Stewart Coggans, executive vice president, Middle East & Africa at Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels said: “The tourism and hospitality sectors in the GCC have improved. This is evidenced by increased tourism arrivals and stronger hotel performances throughout 2011 especially in the UAE and Saudi Arabia. Robust market fundamentals coupled with political and economic stability appeal to investors, this correlates with increased investor demand and appreciative pricing of assets.”
According to latest STR figures year on year to March 31st, hotel occupancy is up 8.9%, average daily rates up 7.2% and RevPAR is up 16.8%, underscoring the region’s buoyant hotel sector.
Jonathan Worsley, chairman & CEO Bench Events, Board Member STR Global said: “With Dubai currently topping the world in hotel occupancy rates, and as the UAE posts record-high levels of foreign direct investment (FDI) with more than US$10 billion (AED36.7 billion) pouring into the country from overseas, it provides the ideal location to highlight the benefits of a thriving hospitality industry.”
Despite the upheaval of the past 12-months, the Middle East offers some of the world’s best tourism and hotel investment opportunities. The high level of political stability combined with government initiatives to attract tourism investment in the oil-exporting states of the Gulf, provides developers and investors with some very exciting opportunities.