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THE OFFICIAL SHOW DAILY 5-8 May 2014


TAKING THE TOURISM OFFENSIVE


Contents 18


4 Thursday 8 May


WHERE LUXURY IS THE STANDARD


Middle East destinations continue to raise the bar “When you look at the


Boasting more fi ve-star hotel rooms and mall space per capita than anywhere else on Earth, Dubai’s top selling point is often defi ned as “affordable luxury” and it is a successful formula being replicated in neighbouring Gulf destinations. Yet, with more than 60


26


percent of the GCC’s upcoming hotel pipeline between 2014 and 2019 focused on the fi ve- star sector, together with three leading airlines expanding rapidly and their respective


airports establishing a name as global aviation hubs, is there room for several tourism hot spots across the region? Leading hoteliers attending


Arabian Travel Market say yes, as they forge ahead with more ambitious luxury hotel developments that hone in on the key growth markets of Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, while simultaneously raising the standards of their facilities and services in a bid to outpace customer expectations.


UAE and Qatar – the major hubs they have become and the tourism developments they have created or have planned – there are so many opportunities for luxury hotel brands to thrive in this environment,” said Hilton Worldwide Vice President Operations, Arabian Peninsula, Christian Grage. “Having recently launched


04 EXHIBITOR NEWS


18 In pictures ARABIAN TRAVEL MARKET 2014; HIGHLIGHTS FROM THIS YEAR’S SHOW


20 In focus


VISITING SAUDI ARABIA’S HOLY SITES


FC_Solus_Strip_Ad_Dubai_280x105mm.ai


25 EXHIBITOR TRAILS 26 DESTINATION PROFILES 30 EXHIBITOR REFLECTIONS


Arabian Travel Market 2014 featured a luxury theme. Thousands fl ocked to the show to take full advantage of its valuable networking opportunities


1 4/27/14 6:12 PM


two Waldorf Astoria hotels and a Conrad in the UAE, we are now looking to open a new Waldorf Astoria in Qatar in 2015. We believe it is the right time to be in these destinations, because each one is reinventing itself, especially with upcoming milestones such as Dubai Expo 2020 and the 2022 FIFA World Cup, allowing it to be successful in its own right.” A key driving force behind


the prolifi c growth of the luxury tourism sector is the region’s own vibrant travel community. GCC visitor numbers to Dubai and Abu Dhabi increased 15 percent in 2013 compared to 2012


Mark Walsh, Portfolio Director at Reed Travel Exhibitions, presenting the New Frontiers Award to Devinder Singh, Economic Advisor to India’s Ministry of Tourism and Ashok Babu, Deputy Consul General of India in the UAE


INDIA RECEIVES NEW FRONTIERS AWARD 2014


India’s expert handling of relief, rehabilitation and rebuilding in the two natural calamities that hit the country last year has earned it this year’s New Frontiers Award. India saw twin tragedies last


year. Heavy floods and landslides devastated its northern Uttarakhand state in June, leaving 5,500 dead. Cyclone Phailin causing significant fatalities on its east coast barely five months later, displacing more than 1.1 million people. Mark Walsh, Portfolio Director


at Reed Travel Exhibitions, presented the award of recognition to the Indian contingent during a special session at Arabian Travel Market yesterday. The award was accepted by Devinder


Singh, Economic Advisor to India’s Ministry of Tourism and Ashok Babu, Deputy Consul General of India in the UAE. Speaking in the panel


discussion that followed the awards ceremony, Singh said: “Well-drilled disaster relief machinery swung into action promptly as the incidents unfolded, first with rescue work and then with the rebuilding which continued for many months thereafter to ensure those displaced were rehabilitated and their lives returned to normal as quickly as possible. “We are now using the


global media and forums such Continued on page 4


anantara.com United Arab Emirates • Cambodia • China • Indonesia • Maldives • Mozambique • Thailand • Vietnam


VISIT US DURING


ARABIAN TRAVEL MARKET: STAND UAE2310


FIND US AT FACEBOOK.COM/YASISLAND @YASISLAND YASISLANDAE


WHY SPORTS ARE THE GULF’S WINNING TICKET


Thai inspired luxury in the heart of Dubai


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