French hotel operator AccorHotels remains optimistic about Dubai’s hospitality market as it expects to double the number of hotel rooms in the next 12 months, a senior company executive said on Monday.
At present, the company has 38 existing properties in the UAE, of which 23 are located in Dubai.
“We today have 8,000 rooms in operation in Dubai. We expect to secure operations for 15,000 rooms in a year’s time and are in advanced negotiation with investors,” Olivier Granet, Managing Director & Chief Operating Officer of AccorHotels Middle East and Africa (MEA) told Arabian Business.
“We see mainly opportunities in Dubai. If you look at what is happening in the city - with the opening of Dubai Opera, Dubai Water Canal and theme parks - you can see there is an increase in number of visitors. So we are positive subject to our properties are bringing and complementing the existing experience.”
However, consultancy firm STR on Monday said average daily rate for hotels in Dubai fell nearly 10 percent in March to AED756.21 ($205.88) compared to the same month last year.
Meanwhile, AccorHotels said it will rebrand and refurbish Yassat Gloria on Sheikh Zayed Road into Mercure Dubai Barsha Heights Hotel Suites and Apartments. With 1,015 rooms, the hotel will be the largest Mercure property in AccorHotel’s global portfolio.
At present, the hotel is undergoing the first of a two-phase refurbishment and is expected to open under the Mercure brand in May.
John Raffoul, hotel manager, Mercure Hotel Suites and Apartments said the renovation process will be completed by end-2018 following which the hotel will upgrade into a 5-star property from its current 4-star rating. Officials did not disclose any financial details.
Granet also confirmed the company is working to bring a lifestyle brand hotel to Dubai.
“It will be a very good addition to Dubai market and we expect to make the announcement soon,” he said.
In January, AccorHotels’ chief executive officer Sébasitien Bazin told Arabian Business of plans to bring lifestyle brand Mama Shelter and Jo&Joe to the emirate.
Subscribe to Arabian Business' newsletter to receive the latest breaking news and business stories in Dubai,the UAE and the GCC straight to your inbox.