New budget hotel brand Citymax will open its first hotel in Dubai in the middle of April, its general manager told Arabian Business on Wednesday.
The 378-room Citymax Al Barsha will be the firm’s first hotel in the UAE, and will be shortly followed by another two branded hotels in Bur Dubai and Sharjah in June, Michael Weyland said.
“Overall we will be entering the mid market segment with 1,331 rooms,” Weyland said.
Rooms in Citymax hotels will be priced “well under” AED300 including breakfast and government taxes, Weyland said.
“We are the only brand that has an absolute straight forward rate structure. “We have high season rates and low season rates, and that is it,” Weyland said.
Citymax Al Barsha, located behind Mall of the Emirates, has a pool, gym, 24 hour coffee shop, lounge bar and a grill restaurant offering live music on some nights.
The hotel in Bur Dubai is the firm’s largest, with 693 rooms, and will have an Indian and a Chinese restaurant, after location research found these would be popular because of the hotel’s location, Weyland said.
As such, the 260-room Citymax Sharjah will not serve alcohol and will only have the coffee shop facility.
Citymax, a member of the Landmark Group, is not the first budget hotel brand to open in Dubai or consider the emirates for expansion, but Weyland said he was not concerned by the extra competition.
“We feel that the market is large enough for all of us. Something that is in favour of mid market hotels in light of the economic conditions worldwide is that a lot of larger companies have revised putting their staff in five star hotels. It is now a matter of image to say ‘no we’re going into a mid market hotel’.”
He said that Dubai’s image as only a luxury destination was already beginning to change and that many UK and European tourists saw the emirate as an affordable holiday destination.
“If you just look at the number of low cost carriers coming to this part of the world, that speaks for itself. It’s a positive thing for Dubai.”
“We are absolutely looking to expand in the region and internationally, but now let’s learn to walk before we can run,” he said.For all the latest travel news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
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