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Starwood Hotels and Resorts is to operate a new Sheraton hotel in Makkah, further expanding its presence in Saudi Arabia.
The Sheraton Makkah Jabal Al Kaaba is owned by Altayyar Travel Group Holding Company and will open by the end of the year.
The hotel is located close to the new expansion of the mosque and will provide guests with special access and views of the holy Haram.
“Makkah has been a particular focus for Starwood growth, with Sheraton being one of three brands to make its entrance into the market in the next year,” said Michael Wale, President, Starwood Hotels and Resorts Europe, Africa and Middle East. “The property will offer pilgrims the Sheraton brand’s renowned world-class service and a comfortable hospitality experience in the holy city.”
The property will feature 414 rooms and branded service apartments, all outfitted with the Sheraton brand’s signature amenities and services, including its premium sleep experience. It will also offer four dining experiences, as well as ample meeting and events space.
“Saudi Arabia remains one of our strongest growth markets in the region and we are on track to more than double our presence in the country in the next three years,” Neil George, Senior Vice President, Acquisitions and Development, Starwood Hotels and Resorts, Africa and Middle East. “With the growth of religious travel into Saudi Arabia, there continues to be a strong demand for hotels within the holy city and Starwood is in an enviable position with a pipeline of more than 3,000 new rooms in addition to 1,200 existing rooms in this market.”
Abdullah Aldawood, CEO of Altayyar Travel Group, said: “We believe the location of this hotel together with a strong brand name like Sheraton makes for a winning combination for our first branded hotel in the holy city. We are confident in Starwood’s ability to provide the finest of its globally recognised services under the Sheraton brand to pilgrims.”
Altayyar Travel Group has recently taken a strategic direction to integrate and expand its business into the hospitality sector, and to build a solid portfolio complementing its current business of travel-related services and e-commerce.
Starwood currently operates 10 properties in the kingdom, with another 11 scheduled to open by mid-2019, according to its website.
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