The Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL) has announced its foray into the Saudi holy city of Makkah with a partnership with Umm Al Qura Development and Construction Company.
The Taj hotel brand operator will develop a property in the city's King Abdul Aziz Road (KAAR) project, one of the largest urban rejuvenation projects in Makkah.
Puneet Chhatwal, managing director and CEO of IHCL, said: “We are honoured to partner with Umm Al Qura Development and Construction Company in bringing the first Taj hotel to Saudi Arabia.
"This signing is aligned to our strategy of a strong focus on global growth markets and to be present where our guests travel to. We are committed to expanding our presence in the MENA region.”
This hotel will be IHCL’s fourth venture in the MENA region. The company manages Taj Dubai located in the Burj Khalifa downtown area. It will also open another two hotels in Dubai in the next 12-18 months.
The proposed hotel is situated within walking distance of the Grand Mosque (Masjid Al-Haram), the main attraction for over 6 million pilgrims who visit the city each year.
It will also be in close proximity to commercial offices, retail stores and restaurants within KAAR project. The hotel, scheduled to open in January 2023, will have approximately 340 keys, banqueting facilities and several restaurants.
Mohammad Al Ganawi, CEO of Umm Al Qura Development and Construction Company said: “We are delighted to partner with The Indian Hotels Company Limited. We look forward to working with them to bring the iconic Taj brand to the unique development project in Makkah.”
As the birthplace of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and the site of his first revelation of the Quran, Makkah is the holiest city in the religion of Islam.
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