Breaking Travel News

IHG to Introduce Budget Brand to Middle East

The InterContinental Hotels Group announced plans at the Arabian Travel Market in Dubai today to launch its highly successful chain of branded economy hotels in the Middle East and aims to be operating over 20 of the new properties in the next five years. Express by Holiday Inn® hotels, are designed and purpose-built for the price-conscious business and leisure traveller, catering for short-term guests. The hotels are already well known in the US, and in Europe, where the combination of quality and budget price has been extremely successful.

The Middle East’s first Express by Holiday Inn® hotels are expected to open by the end of 2005 simultaneously in Dubai, Jeddah and Riyadh, paving the way for a steady flow of further properties to follow in both business locations throughout the GCC.

In Saudi Arabia, the lead investor in Express by Holiday Inn® is SREDCO (Saudi Real Estate Development Company) a specialised and professional real estate group and a wholly owned subsidiary of Alesayi Group of Companies. SREDCO has a roll out plan for a total of twelve hotels throughout Saudi Arabia, all operating by end 2009. It is expected that a similar roll out plan will be announced by the end of May for the GCC.

“Our research has shown that the Middle East needs a good chain of hotels which place an emphasis on quality at a budget price,” said Chris Moloney, chief operating officer, InterContinental Hotels Group, Middle East and Africa. “We are meeting that need, and our target is to be operating as many as 20 Express by Holiday Inn® hotels in the region within five years, with more to follow. The arrival of Express by Holiday Inn® will be particularly good news for short-break holidaymakers, families and business travellers alike.

He continued, “Every Express hotel will bring the convenience of guaranteed advance bookings and consistent quality at an affordable price to our guests. Each of the hotels will be a new building offering consistent standards of services, while the product has been customised to suit local guest requirements. Express will also offer guests our very successful Priority Club® Rewards programme. The brand will not only add significantly to our presence in the Middle East but also successfully fill a gap in the market”.


Worldwide, there are now more than 1,450 Express by Holiday Inn® hotels with over 120,000 rooms.