Accommodating growth

During khareef, average occupancy rates across Dhofar exceed 90 per cent: no wonder we are seeing a growing number of tourism projects, with significant investments from the GCC and further afield.” Hotel chains did their part in promoting tourism last year by tying up with tour operators and airlines to offer special deals to visitors, and are continuing the successful strategy this year too.

Daniel Fanselow, area general manager for Muriya Hotels, says, “We collaborated with leading tour operators to introduce a number of chartered flights from one of our key client demographics, Europe.

However, given Oman’s track record of combining development with retaining the country’s culture and heritage, I believe that the current strategy is a prudent one – concentrating on growth from high-spending, top tier tourists who want to stay in premier hotels and resorts.The new developments are expected to add some 4,000 – 5,000 new hotel rooms in Oman in the next few years.Callaghan says, “The high profile projects one sees announced in the media are the five and seven star properties, others are opening too.In addition, the market for marine activities, underwater adventure, and diving certifications are all new characteristics of Oman’s tourism industry.Growth trajectory According to various reports, the average room rate in Oman during 2014 was of the order of US0-250 per night and occupancy levels above 60 per cent.

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