Oman to develop major ecotourism destination

Ras Al-Hadd project will feature five-star hotels and resorts

A rendering of the Ras Al-Hadd project in Oman
A rendering of the Ras Al-Hadd project in Oman

A joint venture between developers and investors from Oman and Qatar is to move forward with an eco-themed project in Oman which will feature five-star hotels and resorts, as well as wildlife, cultural and retail elements.

The Government of the Sultanate of Oman and Qatari Diar Ras Al-Hadd Development Company SAOC, a newly established entity that is jointly owned by the Oman Tourism Development Company (Omran) Qatari Diar Company, recently signed a comprehensive development agreement for the Ras Al-Hadd project, located in the South Al Sharqiyah Governorate.

It will cover a total of 1.8 million square metres and is expected to cost an estimated OR250 million (US $649 million) to develop.

The first phase, expected to be completed by the end of 2018, will include a 100-room eco-themed resort, 50 hotel villas, 150 residential villas and a 7000 square metre area for a market souq.

Coming later in the second phase, 100 five-star hotel rooms will be added to the resort, while and additional 196 residential villas and a dedicated centre for wildlife preservation and observation park set over 10,000 square metres will be built.

The third construction phase will see the construction of a separate 200-room, five-star resort, an additional 50 hotel villas and 179 residential villas, as well as the development of a new market area covering 16,000 square metres, and a specialised marine life park.

The final phase of the Ras Al-Hadd project will include the opening of a 150-room, five-star hotel, 50 hotel villas, 175 new residential villas, a dedicated heritage village, and a specialised accommodation zone for support staff with a capacity for 836 employees.

His Excellency Ahmed Bin Nasser Al Mahrazi, minister of tourism for Oman, said: “The Ras Al-Hadd project forms part of comprehensive Government growth strategy aiming at developing the tourism sector in Oman.

“The development fully caters to emerging trends in the tourism sector globally, and once completed will provide tourists and visitors with a stunning insight into the unique wildlife in the region, as well as generate broader economic opportunities for the tourism sector in the Sultanate.

“This growth strategy directly aligns with the Royal Directives of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said, a focus that looks at balancing new developments to cover the different regions of the Sultanate in a sustainable manner.”

The shareholding in the development company is divided between Omran at 30%, while the remaining 70% will be held by the Qatari Diar Company.

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