By Andy Sambidge
Emirate's tourism chief hails performance of hotels sector; says future bookings looking strong
Tourism chiefs in Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) have announced that hotel room revenue grew by 47 percent in the third quarter of 2014 as the emirate continues to attract more visitors.
The emirate which boasts 65km of beach coastline, ended the third quarter by exceeding 1,470,000 guest nights in the destination. Last year the 1,000,000 barrier was not broken until November.
Steven Rice, CEO of RAK Tourism Development Authority said: "Our percentage growth in guest nights for the third quarter of 2014 compared to the same period last year was 72 percent, so extremely impressive.
"We are also seeing significant increases in the number of people searching for Ras Al Khaimah in Google, in visits to our website, and in the levels of engagement via our social media presence. In addition, hotel room revenue increased in the third quarter of 2014 by 47 percent compared to last year."
On future prospects, Rice added: "Forward bookings are looking strong, interest in the emirate across multiple business sectors is on the rise and overall we expect the positive growth patterns experienced in Ras Al Khaimah to continue."
Earlier this year, Ras Al Khaimah said it was launching a new tourism branding, pitching the emirate as a “world-class leisure destination” and retreat from the “urban madness” of cities such as Dubai.
The emirate is looking to promote its unique landscape, with beaches, mountains and desert, as well as outdoor leisure activities and its rich history.
RAK TDA is considering building a mountain village and establishing activities such as mountain biking and zip-lining, to add to the myriad of new beach resorts already opening.
RAK has only been a tourist destination for a few years – the RAK Tourism Development Authority was established in 2011.