More than 500 tourism leaders from around the world will gather in Dubai (May 1) to discuss investment opportunities in the region and the growth of tourism at the first ever Arabian Hotel Investment Conference.
The event, which has sold out, is being held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman of Emirates. Sheikh Ahmed said: “Arabia is one of the world’s fastest-growing regions for travel and tourism and tourism is driving the economies for many of these countries.
“Turning to Dubai specifically: we have been set stringent targets for tourism growth, with 15 million visitors expected by 2010. The drive to attract inward investment into the tourism sector will continue to be key throughout the region over the next decade.”
Jonathan Worsley, organiser of AHIC, said: “We are delighted to have Sheikh Ahmed on board as our patron, as his insight from years at the helm of one of the world’s leading brands will be extremely valuable. The growth of Emirates and the development of Dubai has gone hand-in-hand, and will provide a case study for years to come.”
The event, which will also feature the presentation of a Lifetime Achievement Award to HRH Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Al Saud, CEO of Saudi Arabia’s Kingdom Holding Company, has attracted the attention of the heads of global tourism groups.
The award was the result of voting across a panel of regional tourism leaders, and Worsley said: “Prince Alwaleed was the natural choice as the first recipient of our Lifetime Achievement. He has mixed studied investment opportunities around the world with a measured expansion plan in the Middle East, and is widely recognised as one of the most visionary leaders in Arabia.”
Platinum sponsors at the event are: IFA Hotels and Resorts; Nakheel Company LLC; Kingdom Hotel Investments and Rezidor SAS Hospitality.
Gold sponsors are: Arabian Travel Market; Deloitte; Dubai Festival City; Emirates Airline, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts; Gullivers Travel Associates; HVS International; Interval International; Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels; Jumeirah International; InterContinental Hotels Group; Le Méridien Hotels & Resorts; Port Ghalib; Marriott International; Movenpick Hotels & Resorts; RCI Middle East; Octopus Travel; RSP Group; Starwood Hotels & Resorts and Strategic Solutions.