The UAE’s hospitality industry continues to make a good comeback and is ready to welcome the world for the upcoming Expo 2020 Dubai as 12,000 new keys are anticipated to be added in the second half of 2021 in Dubai and 1,400 in Abu Dhabi.
Ayman Ashor, cluster general manager for Al Bandar Rotana and Arjaan by Rotana, informed that Dubai and the UAE hotels have been ready since the previous year to accommodate and welcome various nationalities with a range of budgets Expo 2020.
“Hotels are now offering different types of stays that fit individuals, groups, and exhibitors. We are also providing transportation to and from Expo daily to hotel guests to make the stay as useful and entertaining as possible,” he said.
In addition, Ashor says other affiliated industries like retail, residential, transportation, and food and beverages will also gain directly and indirectly from Expo 2020.
As per JLL’s recent UAE Real Estate Market Performance study, hotel occupancy in Dubai has steadily improved this year, registered at 58% in the initial five months of 2021 as compared to 46% for the same period of 2020.
Similarly in Abu Dhabi, occupancy levels have improved slightly by 1% to 61% during January-May 2021. However, average daily rates (ADRs) still face pressure in the capital, decreasing by 7% to $89.
Colliers International expects all the emirates will see a rise in hotel occupancy levels in 2021.
Since international tourism stayed restricted because of the pandemic and travel limitations, the UAE operators also keep on offering staycation deals to benefit from domestic tourism demand.
“We can expect this trend to continue for the short to medium term until further easing of travel restrictions are successful in opening key source markets, particularly ahead of Expo 2020,” said Dana Salbak, head of research at Mena at JLL.
The UAE will see another supply of 13,400 units in the second half, taking into account expanded interest and the continuous return of travel following the impact of the pandemic on the hotel industry.
The study found that four-star hotels account for almost 50% of projects – 49%– that are under construction along with various new five-star properties that make up 37% of the total.
“The balance between four and five-star hotels comes as no surprise and is in line with Dubai’s expanding tourism base. Offering more mid-segment and affordable hotel stays without compromising on quality has been a part of Dubai’s strategy to attract visitors from various destinations and comes in light of the high visitation numbers that are anticipated for Expo,” said Dana Salbak, head of research at Mena at JLL.
As per Colliers, the UAE and most Saudi Arabia hospitality industries are expected to witness a faster recovery in comparison to the other markets in the area.