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Ritz-Carlton will expand in Saudi Arabia

altApril 8- The Ritz-Carlton hotel group said yesterday that Saudi Arabia will be its key source market in 2010 and beyond, and it is going to expand its presence there. Beginning this year the hotel group will increase efforts to engage travel agents and other major corporations. 

The company said in a statement that Saudi Arabia is its biggest GCC market. Ritz-Carlton has hotels in Dubai, Bahrain, Doha, and Sharm el Sheikh.  Mohamed Halawani has been appointed associate director of sales in Saudi Arabia to increase awareness of the Ritz-Carlton brand among top travel partners and companies. 

The tourism market is growing in Saudi Arabia and hotels are looking to capitalize on this.  Abu Dhabi based Cristal Hotels and Resorts recently said it will expand it Saudi Arabia to tap into its tourism growth.  Business Monitor International (BMI) said tourism is expected to grow 5 percent year-on-year and an average of 6.5 percent year-on-year through 2014.  Ritz-Carlton now operates 73 hotels in the Middle East, Africa, Caribbean, Asia, Europe, and the Americas, and has more than 30 hotels under development around the world.

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