Christophe Landais

Christophe Landais

managing director, Accor Middle East

French national Christophe Landais’ commitment to establishing and expanding his company’s Middle Eastern venture is second to none; since 2000, he has successfully launched internationally branded mid-scale properties in the region with the Novotel brand, and economy lodging with the ibis brand.

He led the first foray of the upscale Pullman brand into the Middle East market and now, is behind the launch of an innovative network of urban residences, Adagio for the Gulf region, which will be introduced in Abu Dhabi to cater to the serviced-apartment segment.

When Landais took up his role in 2000 the group had 16 hotels in six countries; as of September 1, 2013, the Middle East portfolio includes a total of 61 operational hotels with 14,351 rooms in 10 countries: Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Yemen, covering the full spectrum from luxury to economy segments.

Eight hotels (3071 keys) opened in what has been a very robust last 12 months for Accor, including Ibis Riyadh Olaya Street, Novotel Abu Dhabi Gate, Sofitel Dubai Palm Jumeirah Resort and Pullman Zamzam in Makkah, KSA — with 1315 rooms.

Seven hotels were signed in the same period, all of them in Saudi Arabia. The only blemish on the group’s record was the loss of the Pullman hotel at Mall of the Emirates in Dubai, now run by Starwood, although a second Pullman will open in Dubai in 2014, a 354-room hotel in Jumeirah Lake Towers.

By the end of 2014, 11 properties with 2583 rooms are scheduled to open in Saudi Arabia, UAE and Egypt, bringing the portfolio to 72 properties. Adagio Al Bustan in Abu Dhabi will be the brand’s debut this year, followed by Adagio Fujairah Town Centre next year. One year later, and Landais expects there will be another 10 hotels operating — a total of 82 open hotels.

Looking further forward still he says: “We have committed to expand the network to reach over 25 cities in 10 different countries and we are well on track to achieve our mid-term target of 100 hotels throughout the region by the end of 2015”.

Portfolio growth aside, Landais is also heavily invested in achieving Accor’s sustainable development programme, Planet 21. Ibis and Novotel hotels are being environmentally certified under ISO 14001, but developing human capital and helping local communities is also important.

Landais is most proud of the work being done in Saudi Arabia, which links with his long-held vision to develop Saudisation.

“In the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, we have initiated with the Saudi Commission for Tourism & Antiquities to develop a Saudi trainee management scheme in Saudi Arabia to nurture young educated Saudis to become heads of department and future leaders in our hotels.

This is one among some important initiatives that Accor undertakes which has direct impact on the communities, of which I am most proud,” he says.


Rudi Jagersbacher
Pascal Gauvin
chief operating officer, India, Middle East And Africa
Guido de wilde
senior vice president and regional director - Middle East
Alex Kyriakidis
president, Middle East & Africa
Christophe Landais
managing director
Selim El Zyr
president & CEO
Gerald Lawless
president and group CEO
Bani Haddad
regional vice president for the Middle East and Africa
Ali Hamad Lakhraim Alzaabi
president and CEO
Amine E. Moukarzel
president, president
Pascal Duchauffour
area vice president EMEA
Ulrich T. Eckhardt
president Middle East & Africa
Simon Casson
regional vice president and GM
Andreas Mattmuller
chief operating officer
Josef Kufer
chief operating officer
Sami Nasser
senior vice president, operations, Middle East, Africa and India
Peter Fulton
group president
Mark Willis
area vice president for the Middle East & Sub Saharan Africa
Michel Noblet
president & founding partner
Hamad Abdulla Al Mulla
chief executive officer
Mahmoud Mokhtar
vice president of operations for KSA
David Thomson
chief operating officer
Jiri Kobos
vice-president operations
Glenn de Souza
vice president for international operations - Asia and Middle East
Moritz Klein
GM, Area GM
Anton Bawab
regional president
Paul Arnold
vice president of development, Europe, Middle East and Africa
Raj Shetty
chairman & managing worker
Ziad Al Chaar
managing director
Magdi Samman
regional director of operations & development
Sultan B. Al Otaibi
general manager
Simon Coombs
president & CEO
Mohammed H. Arkobi
vice president & managing director
Fadi Mazkour
managing director hotel division
Darroch Crawford
managing director
Hussein Ali Hatata
vice president — hospitality division
Peter Blackburn
president & CEO
Russel Sharpe
chief operating officer
Tarek el Sherif
managing director
Serge Zaalof
president/managing director
Aqeel Raees
chief executive officer
Dr Ali Kasapbashi
group general manager
Hatem Gasmi
founder and managing director
Anders Dimblad
area general manager
Horsten Ries
managing director
Patrick De Groot
general manager
Rupprecht Queitsch
General manager


ACCOR Hotels open in Middle East
21, until 2015
ACCOR Hotels in confirmed pipeline for Middle Eastv
ACCOR Middle East Hotels opened in past 12 months
ACCOR Middle East Hotels signed in past 12 months
ACCOR Middle East Hotels due to open by end 2014
Years in hospitality
Years in Middle East

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