Slim Zaine, General Manager, Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates, talks about retail tourism segment in light of the upcoming Dubai Shopping Festival.
Over the years, retail tourism has always provided many opportunities to the industry. What are the key programmes which support this initiative?
The shopping malls in Dubai are major contributors to retail tourism and have become famous globally for offering experiential features such as indoor ski slopes and aquariums in addition to a massive selection of branded showrooms. As Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates is directly linked to Mall of the Emirates, we naturally support and take part in key programmes by Dubai government.
How does one contribute towards the progress of tourism?
Creating attractions and events, staying on top of new trends, highlighting your history and aligning promotional packages with ongoing events are some initiatives to enhance tourism in a country. The UAE has successfully positioned itself as a luxury retail and leisure destination due to the extensive shopping possibilities as well as a large variety of five-star hotels.
What are the initiatives by the Dubai government to enable this programme?
Examples of Dubai Tourism’s initiatives are extended shopping sale events promoted as tourist activities such as the recurring Dubai Shopping Festival and Dubai Summer Surprises as well as weekend flash sales with up to 90 per cent discounts. Launched in 2017, the annual retail calendar is a key part of the strategy to attract regional and global visitors to Dubai.
Please share strategies to develop a better technology.
Large-scale retail developments with onsite hotels and mall experiences are becoming increasingly successful. The fact that some shopping malls have evolved into tourist destinations in their own right is adding significant value to the tourism industry and hospitality.