Patrick Antaki: HMH is expanding its portfolio and entering new markets
Haytham Abdelaziz : The UAE’s tourism sector set to record strong growth levels
HMH Group now operates 13 hotels and resorts in the region with 2032 rooms
The Hospitality Management Holding (HMH) Group has revealed its preparations to participate in the 30th edition of the Arabian Travel Market, the largest and most influential B2B travel and tourism exhibition in the Middle East, at the Dubai World Trade Center from May 1 to 4.
During its participation in the ATM-2023, the Group will showcase its innovative projects in the hospitality sector across the region and look forward to concluding and signing new partnership agreements. It will utilize the platform to shed light on its future strategies and plans to expand into foreign markets.
The HMH Group currently manages 13 hotels and resorts in and outside the UAE market with a total inventory of 2032 rooms of various categories. It is expanding its portfolio by opening three new hotel facilities in KSA in the next quarter and is currently in the process of negotiating and planning with several potential owners in Egypt, Libya, Oman and in other major countries in the GCC, for further hotel developments.
On the first day of the exhibition, the 20-year-old fully- integrated hotel management company will sign a management agreement for three new hotels. It will also celebrate the launch anniversary of its hotel brand, ECOS. The Group will unveil on the second-day details about its expansion plans in addition to unveiling its development strategy for the near future. It will host delegations from the AGCC markets.
Patrick Antaki, Chief Operating Officer at HMH Group, said: “The HMH Group is keen to participate in this important exhibition given the exceptional opportunities it provides for all the tourism industry stakeholders to meet, communicate, exchange experiences and learn about best practices, as well as conclude partnerships and agreements.
He added that this year’s participation is significant as it comes after impressive growth witnessed by the regional markets in general and the tourism sector in the UAE in particular. This exhibition will help bring in wider economic benefits to our industry and opportunities for various participating entities.
HMH will expand its presence in the hospitality sector by entering new and emerging markets, which will help expand its global presence. The UAE, he said, has established itself as a key global tourism hub and continued its efforts to widen its tourism infrastructure, including expanding its airports, building more hotels and resorts, and launching new entertainment venues.
He pointed out that the UAE enjoys a distinguished and strong position in the tourism sector that has proved its high resilience during the pandemic and continues to have a safe and stable climate. The tourism sector contributes nearly 11 per cent of the UAE’s GDP annually. The tourism sector in the UAE has continued achieving record growth levels in 2022 and Q1 of 2023, most of which exceeded the levels of 2019. By the end of 2022, hotel establishments in the country received 25 million guests, who spent 91 million tourist nights, with a growth rate of 18 per cent from 2021 and seven per cent from 2019.
The occupancy rate during 2022 reached 71 per cent, which is among the highest in the region and the world. Hotel revenues achieved a qualitative leap during the year 2022, as total hotel revenues reached AED38 billion, with a growth rate of 23 per cent over 2019. Dubai received 14.36 million international visitors from January to December 2022, an increase of 97 per cent compared to the same period in 2021, thus exceeding the recovery levels globally and regionally. During January and February of 2023, the number of international visitors to the city reached 3.10 million.
Every year, the Arabian Travel Market, which will have this time over 34,000 participants from 150 destinations, sheds light on the most vital issues in the travel and tourism sectors, which will play a pivotal role in defining the global trends in the coming years. More than 34,000 public and private sector travel, tourism, and hospitality experts from around the world are expected at the ATM 2023, including over 1,500 exhibitors.
Haytham Abdelaziz, Director of Operations at HMH Group, said the UAE government continues to invest heavily in the tourism sector to diversify its economy and attract more visitors. This is in line with the National Tourism Strategy 2030 within the framework of 50 projects which aims to raise the contribution of the tourism sector to the GDP to AED450 billion, at an annual increase rate of AED27 billion. This is also aimed at strengthening the country’s position as one of the best tourist destinations in the world and attracting 40 million guests in hotel establishments.
He added, despite the difficult circumstances thrown by the pandemic, has succeeded in reopening its doors to tourists while maintaining strict health and safety measures. This helped promote the growth and development of the tourism industry. With continuous investments and an unfaltering commitment to providing unique experiences and attractions, the UAE’s tourism sector is expected to record strong growth rates in the coming years. The HMH Group, founded in 2003 in Dubai, is continuing to pursue plans to expand its hotel portfolio in the coming years by taking advantage of the strong growth opportunities offered by the regional markets. HMH offers hotel owners and real estate developers a wide range of world-class solutions for comprehensive management with five brands. Its portfolio includes Bahi Hotels & Resorts, Coral Hotels & Resorts, Corp Hotels, EWA Hotel Apartments and ECOS Hotels.