Dubai hotel sector to rebound by 2010



Dubai hotel sector will witness considerable boost during the fourth quarter of the year, or early 2010, after suffering major decline in average hotel room rates during the first half of the year, the hotel industry executives revealed.

The Middle East was the last to bear the fallout of the global economic downturn, than rest of the world, with the slowdown becoming apparent only in the fourth quarter of last year. Dubai was much hardly hit by the downturn than Abu Dhabi.

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With the average price of a hotel room in the emirate dropping by 26 percent during first half of the year, Dubai has grown to be more attractive compared to that during the same period, seen a year ago.

The average global room rate also fell around the same time by 17 percent, as per the latest study of the price index by Hotels.com, part of Expedia group, and an online travel agency.

Dubai hotels has witnessed the greatest drop in rates, making it an even more attractive tourist destination, while hotel prices in Abu Dhabi have also fallen considerably, said Walter Lo Faro, Director of Market Management, Expedia for Middle East and Indian Ocean.

Towards the second quarter of this year, the room rates began dropping in Abu Dhabi too, as the economic downturn affected more business travelers. In Dubai however, with the drop in prices during the first quarter, the hoteliers came out with more promotional offers to attract customers, and got adjusted to the changing economic scenario.

The hoteliers planning to open new properties in Dubai or Abu Dhabi markets this year are Movenpick, Kempinski, Sofitel, Rotana Hotels, Armani hotels and Media One.

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