By Parinaaz Navdar
Once a $32bn expansion is complete, DWC's Al Maktoum International will become the largest airport in the world
Dubai World Central will offer at least 20,000 hotel rooms by 2025, DWC vice president, real estate Mohammed Al Awadhi, told Hotelier Middle East.
When completed the DWC master plan will be home to the Al Maktoum International Airport, and its recently announced expansion, which will increase its capacity to more than 200 million passengers a year.
Once the AED 120 billion ($32billion) expansion is complete, Al Maktoum International will become the largest in the world.
Commenting on interest from hoteliers and developers, Dubai World Central director – business development Eric Perino said: “We have heard some of our investors saying the government of Dubai has a reputation for delivering. So when there is an announcement that $32 billion is being spent on the expansion of the airport, there is a clear interest right away from the private sector to be alongside that investment.
“So the hoteliers are happy to invest money today at the same time as the government announces they are spending money to develop this huge amount of infrastructure which will ultimately bring people, passengers, businesses, who will be future guests of these hotels.”
According to Al Awadhi, around 65% of the hotels will fall under the mid-scale category. He explained: “DTCM has announced tax incentives for three and four star hotels, so almost all of the hotels in this area are in that segment and will benefit from this rebate on the tax in the first year of operation, which is an incentive for development.”
Perino added: “All these hotels are not only focused on serving the airport; they will also serve the wider DWC community – we have a logistics district, and aviation district, a business park, which will by 2020 probably have 50,000 employees. It will require hotel and F&B facilities as well, so this is not purely focused on the airport, but Dubai World Central overall.”
At least four properties have already been signed for the DWC development. These include the 150-key Aloft Dubai World Central, the750-key Studio M Dubai World Central, a 400-room Millennium Dubai World Central, and the 700-key IHG development, which will include a Holiday Inn and Staybridge Suites property.
Al Maktoum International Airport began accepting passengers in 2013 last year The airport will be developed in two phases. Phase one will include two satellite buildings which will jointly be able to handle around 120 million passengers annually and accommodate up to 100 A380 superjumbos at any given time.