Rotana, one of the leading hotel management companies in the region with hotels across the Middle East, Africa and Turkey, signed a management agreement with Golden Group Holding (GGH), a diversified Oman-based business group with interests in real estate, hospitality, construction, logistics and oil and gas, for a new hotel project in Muscat, Oman.
The agreement was signed by Nasser Al Nowais, Chairman of Rotana, and Sheikh Salim bin Ahmed Al Ghazali, Chairman of Golden Group Holding, at a ceremony held on the sidelines of the Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2017, the region’s premier travel and tourism event taking place in Dubai.
The signing ceremony was held in the presence of H.E. Maitha Al Mahrouqi, Undersecretary, Oman Ministry of Tourism, H.E. Dr. Khalid Said Al Jaradi, the Ambassador of the Sultanate of Oman to the United Arab Emirates, H.E. Shaikh Salem Samhan Al Kathiry, Manager of the Commercial Office of Sultanate of Oman in Dubai, and senior executives from both Rotana and GGH.
The new hotel – named Al Mouj Rayhaan by Rotana – will be located within the landmark Al Mouj development, an integrated tourist complex spread along a stunning 6-km stretch of Muscat’s coastline and comprising a mix of hotels, luxury residential properties, retail and dining facilities and a private yachting hub in addition to Oman’s only signature PGA-standard 18-hole links golf course, designed by legendary golfer Greg Norman.
Al Mouj Rayhaan by Rotana will feature 250 beautifully appointed rooms, suites and apartments along with world-class amenities and services. Located in a prime sea front location designed to meet diverse guest needs, the property is scheduled to open before 2020.
The management agreement for Al Mouj Rayhaan by Rotana further strengthens the strategic relationship between Rotana and GGH; the two companies had earlier in 2015 signed an agreement for the development of five new hotels in Oman.
“The agreement marks the continuation of our valued partnership with GGH,” said Nasser Al Nowais, Chairman of Rotana. “As one of the fastest growing tourism and hospitality markets in the region, Oman has everything going for it – from a rich history and spectacular landscapes to an increasingly diverse mix of top-class tourist attractions. Rotana has ambitious plans for the Oman market, with no less than nine hotels set to open in the Sultanate by 2020, and we are delighted to have a company of the stature, reputation and financial strength of GGH as a key strategic partner in our efforts to transform Oman’s hospitality landscape and continue our company’s expansion in the region.”
“Once complete, Rotana’s upcoming properties in Oman will add more than 1,600 keys to our existing inventory of 400 rooms in the Sultanate, bringing the total tally to over 2,000 rooms. More importantly, these projects will bring significant economic benefits for Oman and create hundreds of new jobs for Omani nationals, while providing a new level of guest experience to visitors to the Sultanate,” Al Nowais concluded.
Inbound tourism to the Sultanate rose by an average of 7.4% per annum in the decade beginning 2005, and the Oman government has outlined plans to attract 1.4 million international visitors annually by 2019, up from 1.1 million in 2015. Rotana is seeking to capitalize on the opportunities created by Oman’s renewed focus on developing its tourism and hospitality sector.
On this occasion, Sheikh Salim bin Ahmed Al Ghazali, Chairman of GGH, said, “We are happy to further strengthen our strategic alliance with Rotana, and the event we are witnessing today confirms our commitment to investing in Oman’s tourism industry and to contributing actively to the plan developed by the government to increase the share of the tourism sector in the country’s GDP.”
“GGH’s investment in Rotana hotels coincides with the opening of the new Salalah International Airport and the final stage of completion of the Muscat International Airport, which will significantly increase the number of flights coming to Oman. Rotana is one of the most renowned hotel management companies in the region and our strategic collaboration with them will ensure that our hotels maintain the highest quality and service standards,” he added.
The tourism sector is expected to play an important role in driving economic development in Oman over the next years. Recognizing the economic importance of the tourism and hospitality sector, the Government of Oman is making significant investments in developing its tourism infrastructure and there are currently a number of major tourism projects underway across various parts of the country. Tourism is also identified by the National Program for Enhancing Economic Diversification (Tanfeedh) as a core pillar in promoting diversified economic development.
Sheikh Salim said, “GGH is developing multiple hospitality, mixed-use and master developments in line with the government’s diversification strategy and cooperates with the government to accomplish a variety of tourism projects throughout Oman to enhance the Sultanate’s position in the tourism sector. GGH, with its subsidiaries Taameer Investment and Al Sedrah Real Estate, is considered among the leading real estate investment companies in the Sultanate of Oman and currently has 13 hotels in various stages of development – all managed by major international operators.”