Marriott on course for massive GCC expansion

Five new Residence Inn properties signed within the region, as group aims to grow total UAE portfolio to 25 properties

Alex Kyriakidis, president and managing director, Middle East & Africa, Marriott International.
Alex Kyriakidis, president and managing director, Middle East & Africa, Marriott International.

Marriott International plans to add 79 properties and 16,415 rooms within the region by 2020, an expansion which includes an increase of the UAE footprint to 25 properties.

The first Residence Inn in the UAE is slated to open in 2019, and the brand has had its first outing in Bahrain.

“Dubai is an ideal location for our first ever Residence Inn by Marriott in the UAE as it offers a convenient location with outstanding accessibility, both to the nearby international airport and to the surrounding emirates. Given the increase in tourism and global traffic to Dubai, as well as market predictions for the future, we see a great opportunity to further expand in this market, and particularly within the extended stay segment,” said Alex Kyriakidis, president and managing director, Middle East & Africa, Marriott International.

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The brand is undergoing a substantial expansion in the Middle East and Africa in line with Marriott International’s regional development plans over the next five years, with a total of five signings already confirmed to date.

The company’s amplified development plans has been defined in line with regional and global market trends. According to the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) a total of 13.2 million tourists visited Dubai in 2014, representing year-on-year growth of 8.2% and almost double the global average of 4.7%. In particular the extended market segment has seen a healthily increasing demand as occupancy hit record levels last year globally.

Marriott International currently operates 14 hotels in UAE, spanning six brands including Marriott Hotels, Courtyard by Marriott, Marriott Executive Apartments, JW Marriott, Autograph Collection and The Ritz-Carlton. As part of Marriott International’s regional expansion plans in the Middle East and Africa, the UAE will see a further 12 properties open adding a further 2700 rooms to the country by 2020.

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