Since establishing the Accor Middle East office in Dubai in 2000, Christophe Landais has been dedicated to extending the company’s presence across the region.
Paving the way initially with Accor’s budget and mid-range brands Ibis and Novotel, Landais has since overseen the addition of many more of the French hotelier’s brands, with Adagio City Aparthotel opening in Abu Dhabi in Q1 2013, Pullman ZamZam Makkah open, and the region’s first MGallery signed for Doha.
In total, over the past 12 months Accor has opened two hotels and signed four hotels, including Mercure Dubai and Novotel Jizan, KSA. Looking forward, Landais expects to open 11 hotels within the next 12 months, of which nine will be in the UAE.
Expansion in KSA is also a focus and scheduled to open in December is the 176-room Ibis Yanbu, which will be the first time a global group has brought an economy brand into Saudi Arabia. This should take the regional portfolio to 68 hotels by this time next year.
Landais has also pushed forward with Saudisation, with all Accor hotels in Makkah on the Nitaqat green label and a target to recruit 1400 nationals by 2016.