Marriott launches new brands in ME

Sandeep Walia, Chief Operating Officer, Middle East Marriott International, shared valuable insights on their latest research of 192 million global membership, their growth plans for the year with a special focus on empowering women in leadership in Saudi Arabia, as there will be more hotels coming up this year.

Dr. Shehara Rizly

Marriott International in the Middle East, Egypt and Turkey counts for 233 hotels that are currently in operation. About 130 other projects are in different phases of construction. Starting off in the UAE, on 1 January was the announcement of Marriott International taking over operations of Vida Downtown Dubai, Manzil Downtown Dubai and Address Dubai Marina previously operated by Emaar. The three properties were owned by Abu Dhabi National Hotels (ADNH). The partnership went a step further to rename the properties as JW Marriott Hotel Marina (formerly known as The Address Dubai Marina), Hotel Boulevard, Autograph Collection (formerly known as Vida Downtown Dubai Hotel) and The Heritage Hotel, Autograph Collection (formerly known as Manzil Downtown Dubai Hotel).

Openings for 2024
Marriott International kickstarts the year in Saudi Arabia with the opening of the St. Regis Red Sea Resort. The St. Regis Red Sea Resort is the first private island to open in The Red Sea, one of the country’s luxury regenerative tourism destinations on the west coast. The destination-defining oasis features a collection of 90 lavishly appointed beachfront and overwater villas, offering one-to-four-bedroom accommodation, each with a private pool and sundeck.

Sandeep Walia, Chief Operating Officer, Middle East Marriott International, said, “Nujuma Ritz Carlton opens in Q2 in Red Sea which will be our first Ritz Carlton Reserve in this region – today its in six countries and this is the first one in Middle East. We have our first Edition Saudi opening in Jeddah in Q2 this year at the F1 track – this particular track has the highest circular turn and this the property is strategically at that turn.” Nujuma will be the first property from the brand in the Middle East and joins an exclusive collection of only six Ritz-Carlton Reserves worldwide. Next destination in focus is Oman as they open The St. Regis Al Mouj Muscat Resort by Q2. It will feature 250 impeccably appointed guestrooms and suites, all with their own private balcony, walk-in wardrobes and expansive balconies.

Commitment to Sustainability
Walia stated that sustainability is no longer a trend but a way of life as UAE extends the year of sustainability to this year. “Sustainability is engraved into everything we do, everybody is asking about it, whether it is the traveller, booker or operator, everybody is getting into it and doing the right thing. It is no longer a trend, but it is the way forward and here to stay which is good. It is the part where we give back to the community,“ he said.

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