Saudi Arabia—The MEAI region is set to see the development of seven new hotels operated by FRHI Hotels & Resorts, the company recently announced at the Arabian Travel Market. FRHI is the hotel management company currently holding upscale brands such as Raffles Hotels & Resorts, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts and Swîssôtel Hotels & Resorts, all of which are set to expand by at least one new facility in the Middle East, Africa and India region.
FRHI’s announcement is the first phase of the company’s goal to double its operations in the region by 2020. The operator’s current footprint in MEAI currently stands at 19 existing properties. The seven new hotels that are to be added to the portfolio will open in markets including the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Nigeria.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is slated to add two new properties to the existing FRHI properties in Makkah and the capital of Riyadh, the city of Jeddah being the focal point for expansion in the country. Raffles Jeddah will be 180-guestroom, 188-branded-residence facility offering a penthouse entertainment suite, spa, fitness facility and high-end meeting facilities totaling approximately 19,000 square feet of space. Swîssôtel Jeddah will be a 350-key hotel in the Palestine Road growth area that will feature 26,900 square feet of meeting space, and a 12,900-square-foot spa center offering both indoor and outdoor pools.
FRHI’s presence in the United Arab Emirates already includes four properties in Dubai and Abu Dhabi with a number of other properties already in development such as Fairmont Fujairah and Fairmont Abu Dhabi Marina. But the hotel announced at the recent ATM is the first of the Swîssôtel brand in Jaddaf, one of the fastest growing areas of Dubai. Swîssôtel Jaddaf will be a 276-key facility including luxury meeting space, a high-end Pürovel Spa & Sport, and proximity to the nearby Aabar Properties-developed mixed-use project that the hotel is set to anchor.
The company’s ambitions for the Egyptian hospitality market include three planned hotels as follows:
- Fairmont Citystars Sharm el Sheikh—The first of three hotels to be included in a mixed-use project developed by Citystars in Sharm el Sheikh. Slated to open in 2015 in the first phase of development, the hotel will offer 457 guestrooms and 232 residences.
- Swîssôtel Citystars Sharm el Sheikh—Included in the second phase of development, this will be the first facility to introduce the brand to the Egyptian market. The 400 residences and 400 rooms and suites will be available sometime in 2016.
- Raffles Citystars Sharm el Sheikh—The 250-guestroom, 50-villa development the luxury hotel will also include an 18-hole championship golf course and a large banquet and conference island.