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Sat 20 Aug 2011 09:48 AM

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Qatar eyeing 78% rise in hotel room numbers

Gulf state has more than 6,600 rooms in his development pipeline, says STR Global

Qatar eyeing 78% rise in hotel room numbers
Construction continues apace in Doha

Qatar's hotel sector will grow by nearly 80 percent if all the properties in its development pipeline open for business, industry experts said on Wednesday.

According to the Middle East/Africa hotel development pipeline report by STR Global, Qatar has 6,604 room in its total active pipeline.

If they are all built and opened, they will add 78.3 percent growth to the current number of rooms open in the Gulf state, STR Global said.

Other countries to report significant expected room growth are Oman, whose number of hotels will grow by 57.9 percent with 3,734 rooms planned and the UAE, which will grow by more than 55 percent if all 48,071 rooms in its pipeline open.

Despite a major downturn in occupancy rates during recent uprisings, Bahrain is also planning significant growth in its hotels sector with 3,155 rooms (49 percent) proposed, STR Global added.

Overall, the Middle East and Africa region's development pipeline at the end of July comprised 460 hotels totalling 125,268 rooms.

Last week it was reported that occupancy rates for all hotels in Qatar reached 63 percent in the first six months of 2011, up two percent on the same period in 2010.

Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) said that the increase showed the continued growth of the hotel sector despite the opening of a large number of new hotels since the beginning of the year.

QTA also reported that the number of tourists to the Gulf state saw a 12.3 percent increase during the same period.

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