Marriott International, Inc. announced plans to add over 20 properties and more than 5,000 rooms in the Gulf over the next 15 months. The company’s growth in the region is fueled by demand for its hotel brands in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the UAE, and by developers’ appetite for conversions and adaptive reuse properties.
Jerome Briet, Chief Development Officer, Europe, Middle East & Africa, Marriott International, said the Middle East tourism industry continues to grow in line with regional governments’ long-term strategies to diversify their economies. Marriott International’s reputation and world-class brands, along with our long-established presence in the Middle East, put us in a great position to contribute to the region’s tourism sector’s growth and diversification.
Luxury leads Saudi Arabia’s growth, while select maintains momentum
Marriott International expects to add six luxury properties in Saudi Arabia by the end of 2023 to meet demand in the country’s ambitious projects like the Red Sea Project and Diriyah Gate. St. Regis, EDITION, and Nujuma, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve in the Red Sea Project will open in the country. A new Four Points by Sheraton in Riyadh and Courtyard by Marriott in Jubail are expected to open in 2023.
Tourism demand boosts Qatar’s growth.
Marriott International plans to add 10 hotels in Qatar over the next 15 months, with 6 opening before this year’s global sporting event. EDITION Hotels, Delta Hotels by Marriott, Element Hotels, and Autograph Collection Hotels will join the company’s portfolio in the country. The St. Regis Marsa Arabia Island, The Pearl will open later this year.
UAE, Kuwait, and Oman expansion
Marriott International sees opportunities in the UAE to add to its 70-plus properties. This year, the company expects to reach 50 properties in Dubai with the additions of Marriott Resort Palm Jumeirah, Delta Hotels by Marriott Green Community, and Four Points by Sheraton Production City. St. Regis and Marriott Executive Apartments will debut in Kuwait by 2023, and Aloft Hotels will enter Oman.
Demand for conversions and adaptive reuse
While much of the company’s growth in the region is through new-build developments, conversion opportunities continue to rise, highlighting demand for its sought-after brands. Developers are also interested in converting existing buildings into hotels. Over 30% of the company’s expected property additions in the region by 2023 will be conversions and adaptive reuse.
Chadi Hauch, Regional Vice President – Development, Middle East, Marriott International, said, “We’ve developed a conversion-friendly platform that allows existing properties to quickly and cost-effectively access our world-class sales, distribution, and loyalty platforms to meet owner and guest demands.”
Marriott International’s Middle East portfolio includes 150 properties with more than 40,000 rooms in 11 countries and territories.