By Miranda Smith www.emirates247.com
As the hotel sector rebounds from the financial crisis, city hoteliers are hoping their properties will benefit from the annual Dubai Shopping Festival.
The event, which runs until February 20, draws tourists from all over the world, and some hotels hope to see occupancies of over 60 per cent.
The newly opened Moevenpick-Ibn Battuta Gate Hotel, for instance, is expecting occupancy of around 65 to 70 per cent during the DSF 2011 period.
Andrew Hughes, Director of Sales-Leisure, Ibn Battuta Gate Hotel, said: “It is a great accomplishment for a brand new five-star hotel in Dubai. Since its opening the hotel has been running on an average occupancy of 67 per cent.
“Dubai Shopping Festival has done a great job of promoting Dubai as a leisure/shopping destination during the last few years. It is a great way of attracting tourists to a good value holiday where you can enjoy variety of promotions and events and stay in some of the best hotels in the world.”
As a part of its DSF promotion, the hotel is inviting visitors to ‘Unlock the Gate’ (one of the hotel’s key promotions). Hughes said he expects the visitors of DSF and the local market to take advantage of “Unlock the Gate” promotion which will run until May 2011.
As a part of this promotion, the hotel is distributing 22,000 keys worth Dh6 million over a period of four months. The key holders have to bring their gold key to the hotel when they dine, spend Dh250 and play immediately to win fabulous prizes from meals, to instant discounts, to beverages and special stays at the hotel. Meanwhile, one of 2,000 platinum key holders could become the custodian of the key to an apartment lease for one year.
Gold keys to the Gate are available at the Ibn Battuta Gate Hotel from the hotel’s concierge team or any of the restaurants.
Meanwhile, the Pullman Dubai Mall of The Emirates Hotel, which is packing the whole of one month with various packages and offers including adults as well as children.
Pullman Dubai Mall of the Emirates Hotel, meanwhile, experienced occupancy rates of about 50 per cent a week before the shopping festival kicked off.
Commenting on how the hotel is benefiting from the DSF, Leonard Theng, Director of Sales and Marketing, Pullman Dubai Mall of the Emirates, said: “Being directly connected to the Mall of the Emirates, provides a huge opportunity for the hotel to tap into the leisure market that will be visiting Dubai for shopping during the DSF period.”
As a part of the DSF promotions the hotel, which opened for business on September 9, 2010, is offering “Ultimate Family Shopping Experience” at an all-inclusive price of Dh1,673. The package entitles a family to a stay in a Junior Suite (with breakfast and dinner for 2 people), and allows up to two children (up to 6 years of age) to dine for free at each meal when dining with parents. Besides, the hotel is offering Dh100 gift card per day from Mall of the Emirates.
Other Pullman promotions include “Family Shopping Getaway with Kids Room” at an all-inclusive price of Dh1,966; “Shop Till you Drop” offer starting at Dh1,086; and DSF restaurant and spa packages.
Further, Pullman Dubai Mall of the Emirates has partnered with the Dubai Events and Promotions Establishment (DEPE), an agency of the Dubai Department of Economic Development and organizers of the Dubai Shopping Festival, on media and promotional activities during the DSF months, as a part of which the hotel would be hosting two winning families for the MBC competition.
The InterContinental Hotel – Dubai Festival City is enticing visitors with its ‘Stay Sweet, Say Suite’ package. On spending a day with the hotel, visitors will be made several offers. These include a stay in a one-bedroom suite with complimentary breakfast for two; Dh200 worth of dining vouchers per night redeemable at any of the hotel’s signature restaurants and bars; and 50 per cent off on selected treatments at the Spa InterContinental.
The Meydan hotel, meanwhile, is offering a special rate of Dh700+ excluding breakfast (charged at AED 140 per person). Guests can also avail of a 25 per cent discount on spa treatments. Besides, a voucher of Dh300 can be redeemed against food if a guest books for a minimum of four nights or more.
The latest statistics from the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) in Dubai reveal that the number of hotels and hotel apartments increased by seven per cent to 566 establishments in the period between January and June 2010, compared to 530 establishments in the same period in 2009. This saw total hotel rooms increase from 58,188 rooms to 67,369, marking a 16 per cent increase of 9,181 rooms, according to the same statistics.
Dubai hotels also witnessed a 20 per cent increase in the number of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) visitors staying during the first six months of 2010 compared to the same period in 2009, according to the DTCM data.
During the DSF period the numbers are expected to rise. The projected occupancy numbers tell the story.
The DEPE has partnered with over 80 four and five-star hotels including beach hotels and resorts for DSF 2011. Some of the participating beach and city hotels include Madinat Jumeirah, Armani Hotels & Resorts, Atlantis the Palm Jumeirah, InterContintental Dubai Festival City, Jebel Ali Golf Resort & Spa, Jumeirah Bab Al Shams Desert Resort & Spa, Jumeirah Emirates Towers, Kempinski Hotel Mall of The Emirates, The Address Downtown Dubai, The Palace – The Old Town Hotel and numerous other hotels.