Al Ahsa Inter-Con set to open
The first new upmarket hotel in 20 years will open in Saudi Arabia's Eastern Province in the next three months.The A1 Ahsa Inter-Continental Hotel will give leisure and business tourists easy access to centuries-old archaeological, trading and Islamic spiritual sites. The 166-room property becomes the 11th Inter-Continental hotel operated in Saudi Arabia by Six Continents Hotels, which also manages eight Holiday Inn hotels and resorts, one Crowne Plaza hotel, and seven palaces, in the kingdom. Designed in the style of a nearby 16th century castle, Qaser Ibrahim, the hotel will create a modern role in the Saudi Arabian leisure and incentive hotel sector for Al Ahsa, which was the ninth largest population centre in the world in the first millennium. "The Al Ahsa Inter-Continental Hotel will meet the highest requirements of Middle Eastern, overseas and expatriate leisure and business travellers," said Denis Johnson, vice president, sales & marketing, Six Continents Hotels, Middle East and Africa. On the fringe of the Empty Quarter, one of the most dramatic desert regions on earth, Al Ahsa is situated on the centuries-old trading routes between the Far East and the Middle East, and boasts the world's largest palm oasis, producing top quality dates. The hotel offers royal, presidential, bridal, executive and junior suites with the latest inroom facilities. Guests can also choose from six fully-serviced, self catering three bedroom villas, with a private garden, as well. With a 2,100 sq m Qaser Al Moua'tamarat conference and convention centre and state-of-the-art banqueting facilities, it is a superb venue for a wide range of events, from conferences to product launches and weddings. Offering the finest food fare in Al Ahsa are The Silk Road Restaurant, an open kitchen eatery serving mainly Chinese, Indian and Iranian dishes, The Med Restaurant, offering both buffet and a la carte Mediterranean cuisine, and Al Bustan Restaurant, boasting an outdoor garden and serving a wide array of Middle Eastern dishes, as well as cocktails, and unique flavors of "hubbly-bubbly". In addition, Cafe Elite and Al Maha Lounge cater for light refreshments, hot beverages, pastries and cigar selection. The hotel's Inter-Fit health club and spa features an indoor swimming pool, sauna, Turkish bath, steam room, whirlpool, massage, facial treatments and aerobics. As with all Inter-Continental properties, it offers conference, meetings and incentive organisers "The Meeting Place", a dedicated programme designed to take business conferences and corporate events to new levels of convenience.