Few in the UAE would think of getting away to the deserts of Ruwais for a long weekend break.
Although the Sir Baniyas Island which drew in the crowds until now is closed until further notice, many have discovered that spending a long weekend at the Jebel Dhanna Beach Resort hotel tucked away into one corner of this small town is like a ticket away from the intrinsic madness of city life.
Through its continuous presence at major fairs and trade shows, this 109 room beach resort is now a more familiar name for both local and international tour operators and travel agents. The hotel is owned and operated by Danat Hotels & Resorts, a division of National Corporation for Tourism & Hotels (NCT&H), and complements the brand’s existing network of properties in Abu Dhabi emirate.
Efforts to promote the property actively at all major shows such as the recently concluded ITB in Berlin and the World Travel Market are paying off.
Speaking to TTN on plans for 2008, general manager, Manoj Kanwal says, “Our focus for 2008, is to increase our market share and grow in all main key segments i.e. leisure, MICE and local leisure business. This year, the property is participating with its own stand at GIBTM. We are focusing on local MICE business and in the leisure segment look towards Germany, UK, Austria, Switzerland and Russia. This year we hope to achieve a greater market share in all segments and we are projecting 80 per cent YTD in 2008 against our last year’s occupancy levels of 79 per cent YTD.”
According to Kanwal, promotion is made easier due to the fact that the Arabian Gulf is an increasingly popular option for both winter and summer sunshine.
“People are well acquainted with Arabia’s tourism products, and Abu Dhabi is gaining its own ground as a destination that offers something different. We are working with many agents in various markets i.e. local DMC’s as well as overseas tour operators in our effort to reach the product out to seasoned holidaymakers as well as the increasing numbers that seek a ‘getaway’ environment looking to escape from the pressures of urban life. Now, we must show we have the facilities on offer for seasoned holidaymakers plus a ‘getaway’ environment as increasing numbers of people look to escape from the pressures of urban life,” he says.
Confident of the area’s charm, Kanwal said it would appeal particularly to those visitors who had travelled to the Arabian Gulf before and now wanted to try out a new emirate. “But we also expect to attract a large proportion of guests from the region itself, as Jebel Dhanna represents a new destination for GCC residents too,” he added.
by Manisha Koshy
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.
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