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Sun 26 Apr 2009 08:18 PM

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ME hotel projects hit record high

Property consultancy, Viability, says Mideast activity comes despite other hotel projects being mothballed.

A record number of upcoming hotel projects have been recorded in the Middle East, despite delays due to the impact of the global economic downturn.At least 325 properties are in the pipeline, according to HotelierMiddleEast.com, quoting hospitality and property consulting firm, Viability, which has released its annual GCC future hotel survey.

Viability general manager Guy Wilkinson presented the findings at the HOTEC Middle East 2009 in Cyprus.

The 325 hotels equate to 92,026 rooms, with 23 chains each declaring 1000 rooms under development.

However, 42 further projects, with a total of nearly 10,000 rooms, were reported as being "on hold" with no firm timeframes for completion.

The UAE reported 60% of the region's future hotels, but was also saddled with the most projects listed as on hold or cancelled.

Projects delayed but still confirmed accounted for 38% of all projects, with Bahrain and Saudi Arabia reporting the largest number of delayed but confirmed hotels.

In terms of brands, Accor was the stand-out leader, with 36 hotels and 8677 rooms in the pipeline.

Rotana and IHG rounded out the top three, with 24 and 21 upcoming properties, respectively.

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