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UAE’s Rotana expands further into Egypt with Luxor property

Chair, Furniture, Ballroom Rotana
Luxor Rotana will have 319 rooms and 48 suites and is located close to the cities historical sites and the river Nile

Rotana, the Abu Dhabi-headquartered hotel management company, has signed a new agreement to operate a property in Luxor, as Egypt continues to be the dominant player in Africa’s hotel sector.

The five-star Luxor Rotana in Egypt’s historic city is set to open in the fourth quarter of 2023.

The UAE hotelier operates around 100 properties across the Middle East, Africa, Eastern Europe and Turkey, and the Luxor property will be its second hotel in Egypt, following the Grand Rotana Resort and Spa in Sharm El Sheikh.

Luxor Rotana will have 319 rooms and 48 suites and is located close to the cities historical sites and the river Nile.

“Egypt is a key market for us with significant potential and we look forward to further building our brand presence in the country,” said Guy Hutchinson, president and CEO of Rotana.

In its latest Middle East and North Africa monthly forecast, real estate advisory firm Colliers did not specifically cover Luxor, but it said occupancy rates in Egypt ranged from a high of 69 percent in the capital Cairo to 45 percent in Sharm El Sheikh.

Egypt is very much the dominant player in Africa’s hotel sector, as the Arab world’s largest country looks to rejuvenate its tourism sector following the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

A total of 80,300 rooms in 447 hotels, across 42 African countries, are currently in the pipeline for development, according to a study by hospitality advisory firm W Hospitality Group and the Africa Hospitality Investment Forum.

The figures also show that of these 21,281 rooms in 85 hotels are planned in Egypt, with around a third of these currently under construction.

Second in the rankings was Morocco with 7,209 rooms in 50 hotels. However, Morocco had a higher delivery rate as 77.4 percent, or 5,577 rooms, were out of the ground and off the drawing board.

The other African countries making up the top five were Ethiopia (5,206 rooms in 29 hotels), Cape Verde (4,639 rooms in 17 hotels) and Nigeria (5,619 rooms in 33 hotels).

Egypt’s development plans come as its tourism sector was devastated by the Covid-19 pandemic, with revenue dropping to $4.9 billion in 2020-21, down from $9.9 billion a year earlier.

Reuters reported that revenue had recovered to $5.8 billion in July-December 2021, but this year the Ukraine war was likely to have an impact as Russian and Ukrainian tourists were some of its biggest source markets.

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