Developing an iconic tourist attraction is the key to winning a permanent place on the global tourism map, but future success is dependent on achieving the right mix of local and international leisure trends, according to Salem bin Dasmal.
Bin Dasmal, the CEO of Dubailand LLC, will be putting the case for “Think Bigger” at a panel discussion taking place as part of the Arabian Hotel Investment Conference, April 30 to May 2, at Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai.
“We may be aiming high with Dubailand, with expectations of generating upwards of 200,000 visitors a day for Dubai, but there will be the world’s greatest concentration of theme parks, museums, sports facilities and other leisure attractions on a site of three billion square feet - in a city that is easily accessible from east and west, north and south,” he said.
“Already, Dubailand has captured the imagination of developers and architects across the globe, and we are seeing some truly amazing projects taking shape, from theme parks, sports centres, entertainment zones shopping malls, resorts and more.”
A total of US$9 billion is the estimated investment in Dubailand, envisaged as the ‘ultimate fun and leisure destination in the Middle East’.
Development will take between 10 and 15 years, with first phase due to be completed in 2007, and the destination will be twice the size of Disneyland with around 55 hotels and resorts offering up to 50,000 new rooms, creating the world’s largest visitor destination.
“The facility will be of a much larger magnitude and will have much more to offer than any other tourism destination in the region if not the world” claimed Bin Dasmal, who will argue at the conference that in terms of creating a tourist destination, only the largest and most spectacular developments have instant impact in overseas markets.
A curtain raiser to the Arabian Travel Market, the Arabian Hotel Investment Conference in Dubai is organised by CB Richard Ellis Hotels, the largest commercial real estate firm in the world, and MEED Conferences. Details of AHIC can be found on www.arabianconference.com.
At the event, industry leaders will discuss the future of the hospitality industry in the region and the drive to encourage inward investment.
The advisory panel includes among others:Ê Sarmad Zok of CEO Kingdom Hotel Investments; Salem bin Dasmal, CEO of Dubailand; Gerald Lawless, managing director of Jumeirah International; James Wilson, president of IFA Hotels and Resorts & CEO of Nakheel; Jurgen Baumhoff, CEO of Qatar National Hotels; Jean-Claude Baumgarten, president of World Travel & Tourism Council; Susan Furness, managing director of Strategic Solutions and regional directors from international hotel groups InterContinental, Marriott, Movenpick, Rezidor SAS and Rotana.
Platinum sponsors are: IFA Hotels and Resorts; Nakheel Company LLC; Kingdom Hotel Investments and Rezidor SAS Hospitality.Ê
Gold sponsors are: Arabian Travel Market; Deloitte; Dubai Festival City; Emirates; Fairmont Hotels & Resorts; Gullivers Travel Associates; HVS International; Interval International; Jones Lang LaSalle; Jumeirah International; InterContinental Hotels Group; Le Méridien Hotels & Resorts; Marriott International;Ê M.A. Kharafi Group; Movenpick Hotels & Resorts; RCI Middle East; Octopus Travel; RSP Group; Starwood Hotels & Resorts and Strategic Solutions.
Media sponsors are: AME Info, CNBC Arabia, CNBC Europe, Global Hospitality Resources, HOTELS, Sleeper and TTN.
Supporters are: Dubai Convention Bureau, Emirates Academy of Hospitality; International Business Leaders Forum; International Hotel & Restaurant Association; TNS, Villeroy & Boch; Virtual