Kempinski eyes GCC expansion in next two years

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A general shot of the Kempinski Hotel in Jordan.

A general shot of the Kempinski Hotel in Jordan.

Kempinski Hotels, Europe's oldest luxury hotel chain, plans to open new properties in Saudi Arabia, Oman, the UAE and Bahrain over the next two years.

Globally, the group aims to double its portfolio to 121 hotels by 2015, it said in a statement.

Hotels, resorts and residences are planned in the Middle East and Africa with Saudi Arabia, Oman, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria coming on stream over the next two years, while Bahrain, the UAE, the Seychelles and Namibia will open earlier, it added.

Ulrich Eckhardt, Kempinski's president for Middle East, Africa and Indian Ocean, said: "The Middle East and Africa is an important area of expansion for us and we will continue our development strategy throughout the region.

"There is a worldwide fascination for this region and our brand of luxury with European flair makes us a main player in the Middle East and Africa."

He said 2011 would see four scheduled openings, including the Kempinski Hotel & Residences Palm Jumeirah which is the group's first beach property in Dubai.

Work is also progressing on the Kempinski Hotel Bahrain which is scheduled to open in September.

In 2012, the Kempinski Al Othman Hotel - Al Khobar, in Saudi Arabia's oil-rich Eastern Province will open, as will the Kempinski Hotel, Burj Rafal in Riyadh and the Kempinski Hotel, Jeddah.

Summerland Kempinski, Beirut, Lebanon and Kempinski Residences Alabadiyah Hills - Beirut, will also open during 2012, the company added.

Scheduled for opening in 2013 are the Kempinski Hotel The Wave in Muscat, marking the group's debut in Oman, and a second hotel in Egypt's capital Cairo, the Kempinski Hotel, Royal Maxim.

Further to these commitments, Kempinski has also entered into management agreements for the Kempinski Hotel, Marsa Malaz in Doha, Qatar, and the Kempinski Hotel Solaiman Basha Khan, a boutique hotel in Syria.

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