Breaking Travel News speaks to Abdullah Melhem, General Manager of
Sheraton Damascus Hotel and Towers, “Syria’s Leading Hotel”
BTN: Congratulations on winning Syria’s Leading Hotel category at the 2003 World Travel Awards. How does it feel to be recognized by travel professionals as the leading hotel in Syria?
AM: I am very happy that the Sheraton Damascus has won the leading hotel in Syria at the 2003 world travel awards. It felt great, and I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the travelers who voted for us.
BTN: What do you think are the key features of the Sheraton Damascus Hotel and Towers for your customers/clients?
AM: The key features of our Sheraton Damascus include the high level of customer service and the location is very important for both business travellers and tourists. Also the specialist restaurants, internet service, and the comfortable bed which we offer.
BTN: Are most of your customers staying at the property on Business or leisure?
AM: Most of our customers are corporate business.
BTN: As the Area Manager for both Syria and Lebanon, how do think these two countries are doing in terms of tourism growth and what do you think could be done to help raise the profile of these two destinations?
AM: The two countries are doing very well in terms of tourism growth and occupancy. Both Syria and Lebanon are very well known as tourist destinations and a lot of efforts have been made by both ministries, however the regional conflict has affected the tourism industry in general.
BTN: How many properties do you look after within Syria and Lebanon?
AM: Two properties in Lebanon (Sheraton Coral Beach, and Four Points Sheraton Bhamdoun) and two in Syria (Sheraton Damascus Hotel & Towers, and Sheraton Ma’aret Sednaya Hotel & Resort)
BTN: Can you discuss any new developments within Syria or Lebanon?
AM: We will have Four Points Verdun in Beirut which will open next July and Sheraton Aleppo Hotel in Syria for next year.