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Sun 25 May 2008 04:37 PM

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A hotel for all seasons

Four Seasons Egypt looks to the meetings industry to combat the summer slump.

Four Seasons is looking to the meetings industry to drive business through the summer months across all four of its properties in Egypt.

According to Cesare Rouchdy, senior director of marketing for Four Seasons' four hotels in Egypt, meeting planners can find good deals when booking their events during the summer, when the number of leisure tourists declines because if the heat.

"Depending on the time of the year it can represent a very good chunk of business," he said.

"The seasonality means that most of the meetings organisers know that some of the hotels have soft dates and they target these, which is a win/win situation for everyone. They get a good deal and we get to fill up the hotel when we need to."

Four Seasons has four hotels in Egypt; two in Cairo, one in Shark el Sheikh and one in Alexandria.

"They all have meeting space of various degrees because business meetings and incentives is an important part of our business," Rouchdy said.

Each of the properties has its own character, which means that each one is suitable for different kinds of events, he added.

Four Seasons Sharm el Sheikh has traditionally focused on the leisure market, but with a new convention centre in the city and an increase in the number of international events being held there, the focus is beginning to shift.

"Four Seasons Sharm el Sheikh, with its location on the Red Sea, is an ideal combination for having meetings and incentive at the same time," Rouchdy explained.

"You finish your meeting and have time at leisure in an incredible setting. They get a chance to meet in a beautiful location and they can take two or three days pre- or post conference holiday."

The Four Seasons at the First Residence in Cairo lends itself to exclusive incentives and group meetings, Rouchdy added.

"It is a boutique hotel that caters to groups looking for something very residential. People automatically feel very pampered when they walk in," he said.

Four Seasons at the Nile Plaza has a 1000m2 ballroom, five breakout rooms and five smaller boardrooms, while the Four Seasons Alexandria at San Stefano - the chain's latest opening - has a 1057m2 ballroom and five break out rooms, making both properties suitable for larger events and conferences.

"The meetings industry is a very viable and important market for us, both regionally and internationally. It is one that we pay a lot of attention to," Rouchdy concluded.

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