AQEEL Raees began his professional life in the accounts department in an oil company.
“Accountancy seemed to be my future, until I saw an ad in the newspaper. I saw this as an opportunity in an industry in its infancy. After all this was 1974. So I answered the ad and was selected for a management trainee course. After that I joined the Gulf Hotel.”
He says he remembers being asked by the then general manager of the hotel in 1974 how long he thought it would take before he became general manager. “I wanted to say five years, but I though they’d think me impatient. So I said 15 years.” He went on to become general manager exactly 15 years after he joined.
“You need an incredibly supportive wife and family in this field, especially when you’re starting out,” he says. “I used to spend so much time at the hotel that my kids actually thought I owned it,” he says, laughing at the memory. “I have spent a lot of my life in the hotel, but I could never have done it without the support of my wife and kids.”
TTN is the most established trade publication in the Middle East distributed on a controlled circulation basis to members of the travel and tourism industry.
Published monthly by Al Hilal Publishing and Marketing Group, the region’s foremost trade publisher, TTN is aimed at professionals in the industry, from travel agents to airline and hotel personnel.
TTN provides in-depth and extensive coverage of relevant issues in the Middle East and North Africa as well as in other parts of the world. Travel related news, analysis, and new appointments together with information on up-coming exhibitions, marketing and promotional campaigns are presented in an innovative and striking colour tabloid.
Every issue also contains a collation of international and regional news and topical features of interest to readers.