InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) announced the signing of a franchise agreement with Abjar Hotels International for a new 450-room Holiday Inn Dubai World Central and 250-room Staybridge Suites Dubai World Central. The two hotels will be located in Dubai World Central (DWC), along the main route to the Al Maktoum International Airport and a stone’s throw from the current terminal.
Holiday Inn Dubai World Central will feature an all-day dining restaurant, a speciality restaurant, bar and meeting space. This will be the fifth Holiday Inn property to open in the UAE, offering travellers to the city an inviting, familiar environment where they can relax and enjoy themselves.
Located beside the new Holiday Inn hotel, Staybridge Suites Dubai World Central will be the first franchised property under the brand in the Middle East. The new Staybridge Suites hotel joins a pipeline of two other Staybridge Suites properties set to open in the next three to five years across the UAE.
Ideal for business travellers or those seeking a home away from home during their holiday, Staybridge Suites Dubai World Central will feature a mix of spacious studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom suites designed to create a homely residential environment to meet the needs of extended stay guests. The suites will feature fully-equipped kitchens, entertainment and communications facilities, and separate working areas with complimentary Wi-Fi. Guests staying at Staybridge Suites Dubai World Central can also enjoy the food and beverage options available at the neighbouring Holiday Inn Dubai World Central.
Dubai World Central is the world’s first purpose-built aerotropolis. Built around Al Maktoum International Airport, the largest airport in the world when completed, Dubai World Central is the first city in the world to be exclusively designed around an airport. At 145 square kilometres, DWC has been designed as a self-sustained economic zone with a state of the art airport in the centre surrounded by businesses, trade facilities, customised transportation links, residential offerings and the home to Expo 2020. The eight districts comprising DWC are Residential, Logistics, Aviation, Commercial, Humanitarian, Exhibition, Golf and the Airport itself.
Rashed Bu Qara’a, Chief Operating Officer, Dubai World Central, said: “DWC is pleased to open its doors to IHG as it expands its presence in the UAE. In line with the National Vision, DWC represents a dynamic plan of expansion and development. To meet the needs of the 25 million visitors for Expo 2020, 70% of whom will be from other countries, as well as the 200 million passengers expected annually at Al Maktoum International Airport, we are proud to be able to offer our hospitality partners the necessary infrastructure and facilities needed to remain at the forefront of this growth.”
Pascal Gauvin, Chief Operating Officer, India, Middle East & Africa, IHG, said: “Dubai is a key growth city for us in the Middle East and with the development of new infrastructure we see greater opportunities for us to build our brands’ presence here. Dubai World Central is set to become a major commercial hub with immense potential for us to cater to the rise in business and leisure travel, and we are very pleased to be working with Abjar Hotels International to develop the new Staybridge Suites Dubai World Central and Holiday Inn Dubai World Central. We have had a successful relationship with them and the signing of these two new hotels is a fantastic step forward for both Abjar Hotels International and IHG in the UAE.”
Yousef Almulla, Managing Director, Abjar Hotels International, said: “Our development strategy goes hand in hand with Dubai’s bold vision to be amongst the world’s most prominent tourist destinations. When developing new hotels it is vital to find the right brand. We have been working with IHG for many years and in that time we have enjoyed healthy growth and excellent returns on our IHG-branded hotels such as Crowne Plaza Dubai Deira and the four Holiday Inn Express hotels. We are pleased to be extending our partnership with IHG to bring two new world-class properties to one of the most exciting upcoming business districts in Dubai.”
Abjar Hotels International, the hospitality arm of the Almulla Group, currently has five IHG properties in its portfolio across two brands in Dubai: Crowne Plaza Dubai Deira, Holiday Inn Express Dubai – Internet City, Holiday Inn Express Dubai Jumeirah, Holiday Inn Express Dubai Safa Park and Holiday Inn Express Dubai Airport.
The Staybridge Suites brand launched in 1998 and the first Staybridge Suites in the Middle East opened in Cairo in 2008, and in Abu Dhabi in 2009. IHG currently has three hotels across the Middle East, with six properties in the pipeline for the region.
IHG currently has 17 hotels across five brands in the UAE: InterContinental, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express and Staybridge Suites. The company will open a further nine hotels in the next three to five years, including InterContinental Dubai Marina by next year and Crowne Plaza Dubai Marina by 2016.