Muriya Tourism Development will welcome 2,500 Slovak tourists to Salalah Beach bringing the total number of European tourists arriving at the company’s flagship destination to more than 30,000 annually.
Starting March 2016, a weekly direct flight is scheduled to fly from Bratislava, Slovakia’s capital, to Oman’s southernmost Governorate, Dhofar as a part of a partnership agreement signed between Hydrotour, the largest tour operator in the Eastern European nation, and two of Muriya’s hotels, the 5-star Salalah Rotana Resort and the 4-star Al Fanar Hotel & Residences.
“The deal was a natural progression of our continuous efforts to actively promote the Sultanate as a year-round tourist destination,” said Ahmed Dabbous, CEO of Muriya Tourism Development. “According to a recent industry survey, outbound tourism from Eastern Europe is a key growth market for the global travel and tourism industry. This is a market that is yet to reach maturity; therefore, we have identified it as a key opportunity to grow tourist arrivals into the Governorate of Dhofar and Oman.”
The influx of tourists to the Governorate of Dhofar has grown by leaps and bounds over the past few years. According to figures from the National Centre for Statistics and Information, tourist arrivals have grown at an annual rate of 16.3% in recent years, with 2014 alone experiencing a 24% rise in visitation. Occupancy rates have also reached record levels, with four and five-star hotels registering rates higher than 71%.
Hossam Kamal, General Manager of Salalah Rotana Resort said, “Salalah Rotana Resort has experienced a consistent year-on-year growth of occupancy rates. With this deal in place, we expect to book an additional 6,500 room nights in spring 2016. With luxurious amenities, top-class accommodation, and full-range of leisure options, our resort will no doubt appeal to our guests from Slovakia when they arrive next year to experience the authentic Omani hospitality.”
Mikuláš Milko, General Manager of Hydrotour said, “Tourists from Slovakia will appreciate the quality of service, professional staff and the willing management, who is able to react on their requests so they can enjoy the beautiful beach and magical Indian Ocean. We are confident that we have taken an important step for a successful long-term future cooperation between the Salalah Rotana Resort and Hydrotour Slovakia to offer our clients an authentic Omani experience at Muriya’s Salalah Beach destination.”
Muriya is planning to complement the surge in tourist arrivals to the destination by increasing hotel capacity to 702 rooms with the launch of the Al Fanar Hotel & Residencies, a 4 star 220 room-hotel set to open in the coming weeks. It will be the third hotel developed at Salalah Beach, coming after the 400-room Salalah Rotana Resort and the 82-room 4-star Juweira Boutique Hotel.