InterCon goes from strength to strength
Having led the trail to establish Egypt as a key tourism destination in recent history, InterContinental Hotels Group has 12 properties currently in the country.
The country is home to such an impressive number of InterContinental Hotel Group properties based on the demand generated by a strong tourism market that requires a diversity of hotels.
Chris Moloney, chief operating officer, InterContinental Hotels Group, Middle East and Africa, explained the need for such a vast portfolio of properties. “To accommodate all the different sorts of holidays that people want to have, whether it be a beach stay or a city stay, compared to a business trip or a conference, we need to offer a variety of options – and being the world’s largest hotel group means guests have an entire portfolio of property types to choose from,” he said.
The Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza and InterContinental Hotel brands are all represented in Egypt. Of the 12 properties, five are Holiday Inn hotels including Holiday Inn Resort Taba, Holiday Inn Resort Sharm El Sheikh, Amphoras Holiday Inn Resort Sharm El Sheikh and Holiday Inn Resort Safaga Palace. There is one Crowne Plaza property, the high-end InterContinental Hotel brand. With six InterContinental Hotel brands, visitors can choose from Semiramis InterContinental Cairo, InterContinental Pyramids Park Resort Cairo, InterContinental Citystars Cairo, InterContinental Garden Reef Resort Sharm El Sheikh, InterContinental Resort and Casino Hurghada, InterContinental Abu Soma Resort.
The InterContinental Abu Soma Resort, set on the shores of the Red Sea, has become immensely popular with Middle East travellers because of its proximity to Hurghada and Safaga, the amazing service provided by the staff, and the stunning architecture that includes more than 445 rooms, including 63 suites. Later this year, guests will also be able to unwind on a testing and challenging 18-hole golf course.
Most recently, InterContinental Hotels Group opened two very different properties in the country. The stunning 172-room Holiday Inn Taba Resort on the coast of Taba and the luxurious InterContinental Citystars in Cairo.
At the heart of IC Citystars, Cairo’s largest retail and leisure complex with 470 retail outlets, an entertainment centre, cinemas, bowling alley and the only indoor rollercoaster in the Middle East, the hotel features an outstanding lifestyle aqua spa and wellness centre with wide-ranging leisure facilities and a variety of 10 restaurants and bars offering a range of cuisines. InterContinental Citystars also has 19 conference and banqueting rooms, including Al Saraya, the largest hotel ballroom in Cairo with a maximum capacity of 2,200 persons, which is accessible by car and has no pillars. Guests staying at the hotel are assured a blend of comfort and style at the 790 elegantly furnished rooms. Exclusive Club InterContinental floors with 82 rooms and 11 suites provide a separate check-in area, and Club lounge. Other accommodation options include one to four bedroom InterContinental Residence Suites, with private entrance and parking. With so much on offer, it’s hardly surprising that the new hotel has quickly emerged as the city’s most popular destination for tourist groups, corporate travellers and conference delegates and bagged the coveted the platinum award for the Best New 5 Star Hotel in the MENA Travel Awards in Dubai earlier this year.
“These properties really demonstrate the various styles of properties that people look for when they come to Egypt. For example, holidaymakers looking to take a break somewhere peaceful where they can soak in the natural beauty recline on white sands or explore amazing terrain, need look no further than Taba,” said Moloney.
With an aim to attract an even higher number of visitors to the beautiful country, InterContinental Hotels Group regularly represents its Egyptian properties at international trade shows. “From reviewing 2004 figures, it is fair to say it was an excellent year for InterContinental Hotels Group properties in Egypt and the forecast remains strong for 2005,” said Moloney. Based on this strength, the hotels group is looking at new projects in Cairo, Sinai and the Red Sea areas.