The UAE is dominating the pipeline of hotel projects under construction in the Middle East and Africa (MEA), according to new data.
As of April 2019, the country had 56,701 rooms under construction, which will increase its total supply by a significant 33.6%, industry analyst STR Global has revealed.
This accounts for more than one third of the 150,108 hotel rooms being built region wide across 565 hotel projects.
STR’s regional breakdown revealed 424 hotel projects accounting for 125,052 rooms are under construction in the Middle East and 141 projects with 25,056 rooms are being built in Africa.
The Middle East total represented a 9.3% year-over-year increase in the number of rooms in the final phase of the development pipeline. The region also reported an additional 30,203 rooms in the final planning stage and 45,991 rooms in planning.
Dubai remains the UAE’s largest and fastest-growing hotel market with the emirate’s inventory reaching 118,039 rooms as of March 2019, up 8% compared to the same period last year, according to Dubai Tourism’s latest Performance Report.
Average occupancy at Dubai hotels reached 84% in the first quarter of the year (January-March 2019), with the emirate’s 717 properties delivering 8.63 million room nights during that period.
Luxury hotels comprised 34% of Dubai’s total inventory, following by four-star properties, which commanded a 26% share. Properties in the one- to three-star categories accounted for 19% of the total, while hotel apartment establishments accounted for 21%.
Dubai’s hotel pipeline remains robust and the UAE’s largest, with 168 projects comprising 49,950 rooms under construction in 2018, according to the Lodging Econometrics’ year-end Global Construction Project Trend Report.
It ranked second in the list of global cities with the largest hospitality pipelines, just behind New York City, which has marginally more hotels under construction at 171, but fewer rooms at 29,460.