Dubai – UAE 05 May 2011: In a glittering ceremony at Burj Khalifa, Dubai, Raffles Makkah Palace was crowned Middle East’s Leading Luxury Hotel by the World Travel Awards, the travel industry’s version of the Oscars.  Votes were cast online by over 213,000 travel professionals around the world, from over 160 participating countries, who distinguished Raffles Makkah Palace above all others in the Middle East.

Raffles Makkah Palace
Raffles Makkah Palace

This year, “the only 10 months old hotel”, Raffles Makkah Palace was nominated for the first time in the category of Middle East’s Leading Luxury Hotel, following its successful opening in August last year. Winning this Award after less than one year in operation, Raffles Makkah Palace’s dedication to impeccable service has quickly given the hotel an established, eminent name in the Middle East hospitality industry.

“It is an honor to be named Middle East’s Leading Luxury Hotel,” said Mohammed Arkobi, Vice President and Managing Director for Fairmont Raffles Hotels International – Makkah. “We are very proud to be the standard-bearer for hotels in the Middle East, and this award represents the culmination of our tireless efforts to provide the highest levels of the luxury hospitality and excellence while constantly seeking to surpass our own achievements.”

Khaled Yamak, Group Director of Communications and Business Development, added:  “The win is particularly significant as travel industry professionals around the world have voted, carrying global recognition of our well-deserved reputation as the top luxury property in the Middle East.”

Raffles Makkah Palace is located on the holiest city on earth, for approximately 1.6 billion Muslims, in the spectacular new Abraj Al Bait complex, featuring 209 suites with breathtaking views of the Grand Mosque and Kaaba. Personal butlers exemplify “heartfelt service” to anticipate the needs of guests who opt for any of the signature, presidential or royal suites. The Hotel is only steps away from the Holy Mosque and offers easy access to King Abdulaziz Gate, the main entrance to the Grand Mosque.

The design of the hotel offers a residential feel with enchanting private spaces. Guests are introduced to an ambiance created with magnificent touches of local art, architecture and culture. For business needs, a fully equipped business center features a gracious reception hall and a library containing more than 2000 Islamic books, in addition to five private meeting rooms and secretarial services.

Residents of Palace will be tempted to enjoy the exciting dining experiences offered, “Al Qaser” for Eastern, western and international favorites. The “Narjes” Tea Lounge presents its patrons with gourmet teas, coffees and freshly baked produce while Al “Majlis” takes its guests on a culinary tour of Levantine specialties from Lebanon, Turkey and Syria. For lovers of sweets, The Creamery is a must with its custom-made Teppanyaki Ice cream served indoors or outside on the Terrace, overlooking the Grand Mosque.

The World Travel Awards was launched in 1993 to acknowledge and recognize excellence in the global travel and tourism industry and is regarded as the highest achievement a travel product could ever hope to receive. It has been described by Wall Street Journal as the “OSCARs” of the travel and tourism industry.

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About Raffles Hotels & Resorts
Raffles Hotels & Resorts epitomizes enchanting experiences, embodying global sophistication and residential charm, imbued with heartfelt service “like a gentle breeze”. At Raffles, guests arrive as residents, leave as friends and return as family.

Raffles’ relentless pursuit of service excellence has earned its hotels and resorts a legion of international accolades such as Travel & Leisure World’s Best Awards.  Its flagship Raffles Hotel Singapore was voted Best Hotel in Asia for four consecutive years by readers of Ultratravel magazine by The Daily Telegraph while Raffles Beijing Hotel received top score among all hotels in Beijing in Condé Nast 2011 Gold List.  In addition, Raffles Hotels & Resorts is consistently ranked among the world’s top hotel brands in the annual Condé Nast Traveler Business Travel Awards.

Raffles Hotels & Resorts is owned by FRHI Holdings Ltd, a leading global hotel company with 98 hotels and resorts worldwide under the Raffles, Fairmont and Swissôtel brands.  The company also manages Fairmont and Raffles branded residences, Estates and luxury private residence club properties.  For more information, please visit

Raffles Hotels & Resorts’ award-winning collection of legendary hotels includes:

  • Raffles Hotel, Singapore
  • Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor, Siem Reap, Cambodia
  • Raffles Hotel Le Royal, Phnom Penh, Cambodia
  • Raffles Beijing Hotel, China
  • Raffles Dubai, United Arab Emirates
  • Raffles Tianjin, China
  • Raffles Makkah Palace, Saudi Arabia
  • Raffles Paris – Le Royal Monceau
  • Raffles Praslin, SeychellesFuture additions include:
  • Raffles Makati, Philippines
  • Raffles Sanya, Qingshui Bay, China
  • Raffles Konottaa, Maldives
  • Raffles Jakarta, Indonesia