posted on 10/07/2012: 665 views
Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR), the development of 40 towers on the Dubai seafront, has become a new haven for hoteliers as once-stalled projects are revived.
Planned hotels that were delayed because of the property crisis in the emirate are now opening as an increasing number of visitors and residents look for serviced apartments in Dubai Marina and JBR.
Ramada Plaza, which is owned by Arenco Real Estate, opened this week to its first visitors and is already more than 70 per cent occupied.
"JBR is proving to be a very dynamic hot spot," said Wissam Khalek, the business development director for the hotel. "We believe JBR is the location for tourists because it has the beach, The Walk, the facilities and the outlets and shopping."
On opening in 2007, JBR was beset with occupancy problems as many retail tenants on the plaza level went out of business after the onset of the property crash.
The four-star Ramada Plaza project was delayed for a few years, but it has now opened with 356 units, housing more than 500 guests, as well as five food and beverage outlets. It employs about 200 staff.
Hilton Hotels has also recently expanded in JBR and has enjoyed an average occupancy level of 80 per cent since it opened a tower opposite its hotel on the The Walk at the start of the year.
The four-star Ocean View Hotel is also expected to be opened by the end of this year, operated by Jebel Ali International Hotels (JAIH). The property had been originally built to be operated along with the rest of JBR, but was taken on by JAIH this year.
It will house 341 rooms and contain five restaurants and drinks areas, as well as an executive lounge for guests staying in club rooms and suites.
JBR is already well served with hotels, including a Sheraton, a Sofitel resort, a Mövenpick and the Amwaj Rotana, all five-star.
But analysts say the new hotel properties will do well because of the growing tourism market in Dubai and the increasing number of people using serviced apartments.
Dubai welcomed 9 million tourists arrive last year, an increase of 9.6 per cent on 2010, according to data from Dubai's Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing.
In the first quarter, the number of hotel guests staying in Dubai increased 9 per cent, while hotel revenues surged 24 per cent on the same quarter last year.
Hoteliers say the serviced-apartment market is becoming ever more popular in JBR and the Marina.
"The conveniences of the serviced apartments and suites attract a large number of families from the GCC, due to the size of the units and the privacy," said a Hilton spokesman.
"The concept is definitely popular in the Middle East and especially in the KSA, UAE and Qatar.
"Additionally, there are large numbers of consultants with short to mid-term assignments in those particular markets in industries such as oil and gas, construction."
Hotel occupancy averaged 87 per cent in the first quarter of this year in Dubai, up 8 per cent on the same period last year, while average room rates rose 7 per cent to Dh655 (US$178).
Other tourism projects, such as the theme park being built by Ilyas and Mustafa Galadari Groupin City of Arabia, are also now being revived. – The National
|13 May 2013||Hoteliers in Dubai size up rooms at low budget|
|09 May 2013||St Regis confident ahead of Abu Dhabi Corniche debut|
|09 May 2013||Dubai’s new hotel classification scheme passed into law|
|08 May 2013||Rotana to operate 100 hotels by 2020|
|06 May 2013||Jumeirah Group sees strong results in first four months of 2013|