Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa celebrates its 10 year anniversary in Muscat and will be marking the occasion with a number of fantastic offers to thank guests for their support over the past decade.
As a result of the resort opening in 2006, after three years of construction, the 640 rooms doubled the total room inventory available in Muscat and was, and remains, the largest resort in terms of both size and facilities available. During the construction, materials were shipped to the site by sea as the road was being built as previously the resort was inaccessible by land! The development was created as a self contained and independent location, including its own desalination plant and backup generators. The construction was so extensive that on occasions there was up to over 3,000 workers onsite each day.
When creating Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa, its architects and designers followed traditional themes to produce an experience based on the very roots of Oman’s rich cultural heritage. Ancient castles, palaces, cities, towns and mud brick villages that embody the Sultanate’s unique regional identity were the main focus and inspiration for the resort. Today, these themes continue and are evident in the opulent decor and style still portrayed and maintained throughout the resort.
Since time immemorial, sea turtles have been making their way onto beaches throughout Oman to lay their eggs, and to ensure that these rare creatures experience minimum disruption during their annual pilgrimage, Shangri-La appointed Mohammed Al Hassini, the first Turtle Ranger in a resort in not only Oman, but within the global Shangri-La family. Since opening, the Turtle Ranger has assisted over 50,000 turtle hatchlings (from just over 1,000 nests) make their way to the ocean. During the design and construction of the resort it was important to preserve this environment for the turtles, so after careful consideration the resort was designed to ensure all lighting at night was directed away from the shores so as not to impact on the nesting turtles.
Shangri-La Muscat has always been a key contributor to Oman’s tourism sector and a strong support to the country’s growing economy of employment in Muscat, providing work for over 5,500 people since opening in 2006, with 145 members of staff from the team in 2006 still working there today. At the time of opening, 1,200 palm trees were planted in the grounds of the resort for every member of staff employed, and these palms still line the backdrop of the resort today.
The resort has also been an ambassador in supporting jobs for the local community, employing nearly 2,000 Omani colleagues since opening. They have a dedication and passion for training and developing skills for future careers with a particularly strong partnership with the National Hospitality Institute in Wadi Al Kabir by supporting Omani’s with a passion for hospitality in their first steps in their careers.
In addition to the direct employment Shangri-La has provided in Muscat, they have also indirectly created employment for independent transportation. Taxi drivers, partner-operated cars and tour guides have all benefited from the opening of the resort and it is estimated that on average the resort receives over 85,350 independent transports per year, which since opening has generated revenue for over 850,000 contributors to tourism in Muscat.
Over the years Corporate Social Responsibility has been a growing focus and the team and management have supported over 1,900 CSR projects, ranging from beach cleanup exercises, fundraising and water distribution to redeveloping entire homes and schools for the local community.
“As a pioneer staff member from 2006 I am personally very proud to be here 10 years after opening the resort. From the moment I arrived I fell in love with Oman and, while having a short time working in Dubai, it was like coming home to return to Muscat once again” commented Mark Kirk, Area Manager and Hotel General Manager at Shangri-La.
He continued “There are many achievements that the resort has accomplished over the past 10 years and we are all very proud and excited to be celebrating this milestone anniversary. We have always maintained our Shangri-La Values of hospitality from the heart, and we can truly say our hearts lie in Muscat”.
Since 2006 Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa has welcomed over 2,781,365 guests to the resort, from all over the world, and is looking forward to another 10 years developing the tourism to Oman.