The FINANCIAL — Marriott International, Inc. maintains the pace of its regional development plans by announcing the signing of Residence Inn by Marriott Al Jaddaf, a signing that marks a significant entry in the lead up to 2020 as it will be the hotel group’s first property from the Residence Inn brand portfolio in the UAE. Due to be completed in 2019, the Residence Inn by Marriott Al Jaddaf will be comprised of a total of 135 units.
The newly signed property is owned by Bahrain-based International Trading and Investment Company WLL (ITICO), an existing partner of Marriott International that currently owns two other properties – Residence Inn by Marriott Manama Juffair and Marriott Executive Apartments Manama. ITICO has also recently signed its third property in Bahrain with Marriott International, Residence Inn by Marriott Manama Seef, according to Marriott.
Commenting on the signing, Alex Kyriakidis, President and Managing Director, Middle East & Africa, Marriott International said: “This signing is a significant event for us as it represents the company’s first Residence Inn by Marriott property in the UAE and comes in response to a rapidly increasing demand in the market. Today it’s not only the executive traveller who seeks out an extended stay property, but also young families who are looking for a home-like environment where they can still experience the comfort and convenience that they would benefit from in a hotel, such as free Wi-Fi and hot breakfasts.”
“We are very excited to develop the first Residence Inn by Marriot in the UAE after the great success we had with the brand in Bahrain. We are very pleased with our long term partnership with Marriot International and look forward to further enhance it by announcing more projects in the near future,” said Shaikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Khalifa, Chairman of International Trading and Investment Company.
The signing of the property comes shortly after the recent GCC sales mission where Marriott International reaffirmed their plans to add a further 79 properties and 16,415 rooms within the region by 2020, an expansion which includes an increase of the UAE footprint to 25 properties. The company’s amplified development plans have been defined in line with regional and global market trends. According to the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) a total of 13.2 million tourists visited Dubai in 2014, representing year-on-year growth of 8.2 percent and almost double the global average of 4.7 percent. In particular the extended market segment has seen a healthily increasing demand as occupancy hit record levels last year globally.
“Dubai is an ideal location for our first ever Residence Inn by Marriott in the UAE as it offers a convenient location with outstanding accessibility, both to the nearby international airport and to the surrounding Emirates. Given the increase in tourism and global traffic to Dubai, as well as market predictions for the future, we see a great opportunity to further expand in this market, and particularly within the extended stay segment,” added Kyriakidis.
The Residence Inn by Marriott brand has almost 700 properties globally and prides itself in offering a contemporary residence with all the essential amenities as well as the elements of a modern home. It is the ideal choice of accommodation for the next generation business traveller who desires connectivity and convenience, but also for the modern family seeking a homely environment in an accessible part of town. The brand is undergoing a substantial expansion in the Middle East and Africa in line with Marriott International’s regional development plans over the next five years, with a total of five signings already confirmed to date.
Marriott International currently operates 14 hotels in UAE, spanning six brands including Marriott Hotels, Courtyard by Marriott, Marriott Executive Apartments, JW Marriott, Autograph Collection and The Ritz-Carlton. As part of Marriott International’s regional expansion plans in the Middle East and Africa, the UAE will see a further 12 properties open adding a further 2700 rooms to the country by 2020.