After more than a decade operating hotels in the Middle East, leading Asian hospitality group Dusit International further solidifies its presence in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) by entering into a joint venture hotel management agreement with a local partner in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Dusit International and regional hoteliers Dyar Hotels and Resorts recently held a signing ceremony to formally establish a joint venture hospitality management company. Dyar has over 30 years of experience owning and operating hotels throughout the GCC and their local knowledge and expertise, coupled with Dusit’s international experience accumulated over 65 years, will offer truly distinctive products managed in a Shariah compliant manner to the growing Middle Eastern hospitality market.
The new company is already off to a solid start, with three projects confirmed in the pipeline. One will be located in Jeddah under the Dusit Thani label, the company’s original hotel brand most well known for providing gracious hospitality to guests worldwide. The other two projects, to be located in both Jeddah and Doha, will come under the company’s chic and contemporary “next generation” dusitD2 brand, whose newest hotel recently celebrated its Grand Opening in Nairobi, Kenya.
A further five properties are currently under negotiation in the Holy Cities of Makkah and Madinah, which together form the largest tourism market within the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. In 2014 alone, the Holy Cities collectively welcomed 18 million visitors and this number is expected to surge to 23 million by 2020. This exceptional market is amply catered for by Dyar’s sister company Nebras for Tourism Development, an established, tourism company providing an integrated services for visitors and pilgrims, affiliated with over 60 agents from the Far East, Africa, Australia, Europe and the Middle East. It is also one of only 48 companies authorised by the Ministry of Hajj to issue Religious Tourism visas.
Outbound tourism from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is also significant. Nearly 30% of yearly arrivals to Dubai, where Dusit has been operating for over 14 years, hail from Saudi Arabia—over 1.5 million travellers.
With major infrastructure projects currently underway, such as the expansion of Jeddah’s King Abdulaziz International Airport to accommodate 80 million guests by 2035, the Haramain High Speed Railway linking Jeddah to Makkah, and over 30,000 hotel rooms set to come to market over the coming years, the Saudi Arabian hospitality and tourism market is simply booming.
“We have been looking for a way to work within the Kingdom for some time,” remarked Mr. Chanin Donavanik, Managing Director and CEO of Dusit International. “We are proud to partner now with Dyar Hotels and Resorts—their local expertise and decades of experience will be invaluable to the success of Dusit within Saudi Arabia, and we are confident the alliance of an international hotel chain with the knowledge, relationships and distribution channels of a regional operator will provide Owners with a compelling proposition.”
“Being family businesses, Dusit and Dyar share a similar owner-operator mindset, as well as one vision, now we are united under the joint venture,” said Khalid Al-Hattami CEO, Dyar Hotels and Resorts. “This will ensure the companies deliver excellent products to the market, combining the very best of Asian and Middle Eastern hospitality traditions to create something new, unique and unmatched here within the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”