The emirate of Dubai continues to consolidate its position as an economic and tourist hub for the Middle East region, with planned mega-projects such as Palm Island and Dubai Festival City on the horizon, according to an Andersen Consulting report. Strengthened crude oil prices were cited as the main growth factor for the heightened activity in the Gulf markets.
While hotel occupancy declined the first half of 2001 for 18 of the 28 markets tracked, Dubai witnessed an overall occupancy level of 79 percent on an average room rate of $125, thereby recording a 10.1 percent revPar growth (Revenue Per Available Room growth).
Dubai’s Jumeirah Beach was once again the top performing market in terms of average room rate, achieving $191 in the first half of the year, results from the Middle East and Africa edition of Andersen Hotel Industry Benchmark Survey reveal.
The trade survey said Dubai was the fourth best performing hotel market in the entire Middle East and Africa in the first half of this year in terms of revPar growth. Manama, Abu Dhabi and Muscat were the top performers with double digit revPAR growth when measured in US dollars, said the survey.
The hardest hit regional market was the Egyptian, impacted by a decline in group tour operator business, with only the resort market of Sharm Al-Shaikh recording an increase in occupancy. Hotels in Jordan and Syria were also adversely affected by neighboring political instability.
Despite neighboring conflict, hotels in Beirut rallied in the first half of the year with increases in occupancy and average room rates, due primarily to a regional banking conference held in April 2001. Beirut also achieved better results in June 2001 versus performance in the previous year, which was sharply affected by ongoing air raids.
In 2000, whilst overall the UAE appears to have experienced rooms yield growth of eight percent, rooms yield growth in Abu Dhabi was one percent, and Dubai nine percent. Even within Dubai there was a marked variance in performance with hotels on Jumeirah Beach reporting a rooms yield rise of 22 percent, driven in the main by significant advances in average room rate.
The Andersen Hotel Industry Benchmark Survey comprises information gathered from more than 5,000 hotels in 300 markets across 140 countries. Andersen is a global leader in professional services. — (Mena Report)
© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com )