Dubai’s hotel industry is set for positive growth this year, according to the head of luxury hotel chain Starwood. Frits van Paasschen believes more hotels will choose to set up a base in Dubai, thanks to the city’s high occupancy rates and continued growth in tourism.
“We finished 2010 with over 80 percent occupancy in Dubai on average for the year,” explained Frits van Paasschen, adding that the market was not saturated. The Starwood umbrella covers hotel names like Sheraton, Le Meridien, Westin, Four Points and W, and the brand currently has 47 hotels in the Middle East and 20 in the UAE.
“Economic growth is certainly quite strong here,” van Paasschen continues, “The availability of capital is quite good, with the export of oil and gas in the region. Perceived risk is rather low. Even in the crisis, occupancies were very stable. All this points to a market that will continue to grow nicely.”
Dubai's hotel industry continues to thrive, with recent figures showing hotels registering 5,991,660 guests in the first nine months of 2010 - a 6% increase on 2009. Watch this space for the launch of two more of The First Group’s hotel offerings in the very near future; Metro Central and Grand Central in Tecom, adding to The Diamond Hotel Apartments in Dubai Sports City.