Dubai has rapidly emerged as the most popular tourism destination in the region, with hotel guest numbers forecast to cross the 10 million mark this year. According to the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), 9.3 million people stayed in the emirate’s hotels last year, pushing revenue up to a staggering Dh16 billion. In the first quarter of this year alone, Dubai’s hotel profits rose by 24% compared to the same period in 2011, to reach Dh5.38 billion.
The number of guests flocking to the city’s hotels and hotel apartments also rose by 9% in Q1 to 2.6 million people. Average hotel apartment room rates witnessed a 12% increase, while average hotel room rates rose by 7%. With these figures it is easy to see why Dubai recently shot to number one on STR Global’s world rankings for hotel occupancy. Up from 9th place last year, the city surpassed major cities such as New York, Paris and Tokyo.