Shaza Hotels plans 20 hotels by 2020

Shaza Hotels, a specialist in both family- and halal-friendly accommodation, plans to expand its portfolio from one to 20 properties by 2020.

The Dubai-based hospitality group, a joint venture between Qatar’s Barwa Real Estate and Kempinski Hotels & Resorts, currently operates one hotel located in Medina, Saudi Arabia, which opened in 2010.

However, in the next four years, it plans to open properties in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman, Jordan and Spain, Sanjiv Malhotra, executive vice president of Shaza Hotels, told the Dubai media last week.

Of the 20 hotels, six will be under Shaza’s soon to be launched four-star brand, Mysk by Shaza.

“We found that in the market there is a lot of demand for good four-star hotels, and hence the four-star brand was born,” Malhotra said.

“Next year will see the opening of Shaza Makkah (January), Shaza Doha, Shaza Salalah and the first Mysk-branded property, Mysk by Shaza Al Mouj, located in Muscat.”

The 20 hotels cost on average $1.7 billion, Malhotra added.

The company plans to open at least three hotels each year between now and 2020, and has management agreements with 30 hotels signed in total.

Malhotra said the UAE market was “not an easy one to break into”.

“Whenever the cost of land is high, the pressure on returns is high. Most investors, therefore, want to go in for a very safe bet. We have two to three solid dialogues that are nearing completion, both in the case of Shaza and Mysk,” he said.

Malhotra revealed Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah were all on his radar while overseas, Shaza plans to operate a hotel in southern Spain by mid 2018, and is in talks with an investor for a property in London.

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