Who’s visiting Dubai?
The emirate was hit by a substantial decline in tourist numbers last year, but could be on the road to recovery.
January 31, 2010 2:14 by Aarti Nagraj
Dubai saw the number of hotel rooms increasing to 59,372 during the first nine months of 2009, a 19 percent rise compared to the same period in 2008, according to DTCM figures.
Earlier this year, the organizers of The Hotel Show said that hotel projects under construction across the GCC are valued at more than $7 billion, with the majority of them-with a value of $4.4 billion-located in the UAE.
“We asked research company Proleads to examine active and under-construction hotel projects scheduled for completion between now and 2013 across the GCC countries. The results indicate that the continuing development of the regional hospitality industry is both robust and sustainable,” Maggie Moore, exhibition director of The Hotel Show said in a release.
“It has undoubtedly been a tough time for the hospitality industry on a worldwide basis in 2009 and the Middle East has not escaped totally unscathed. But set against global trends, the region is still comfortably placed,” she said.
Most of the research reports seem optimistic about tourism picking up across the region this year. But even as the shopping festival begins in Dubai, taxi drivers complain that there are no tourists, and the Jumeirah Beach road, which used to announce the event with lights and colors, remains bare this year. It is going to take a while, it seems, before the tourists numbers shoot up again.