Campaign 'paying off'

The Ritz-Carlton ... new packages lined up.

An aggressive promotional campaign initiated by the Egyptian tourism ministry is helping to lure back visitors to the country, says a leading hotel.

The campaign, titled "It's your home" was launched after the downturn sparked by September 11 and targeted the Egyptian satellite and pan-Arab TV channels promoting leisure travel to Egypt from the GGC, Lebanese and Jordanian markets.

Another campaign on CNN and most of the European satellite channels targeted the classic travel market from the US and Europe.

It also involved fam trips as well as presence at major trade shows.

"The result is really noticeable in a very busy Naama Bay, Sharm El Sheikh, where a combination of Gulf travellers, Lebanese, Egyptians, Russians and Italians among others are enjoying what the city is offering from lovely beaches to an entertaining night life," said Ritz-Carlton Sharm El Sheikh public relations manager Amira El Amir.

The hotel's director of revenue management added that The Ritz-Carlton had not lost its market share despite the downturn earlier.

"We at The Ritz-Carlton, Sharm El Sheikh did not lose our share from the market, as we only target exclusive travellers and not mass travellers," he said.

Meanwhile, the hotel is getting ready for the fall and the holiday seasons including Bairam.

A "Fall Special" package is offered between September 1 and November 30 and package includes accommodation in deluxe sea view or pool and garden view rooms, complimentary airport transfers, welcome Nubian Zaffa with exotic welcome drinks and lavish buffet breakfast.

In addition, those who book five nights will get a complimentary dinner for two in Fayrouz, the award winning Lebanese restaurant. And those who book between November 11 and November 30 will be upgraded to junior suites, said the hotel.

Another package offered for the Bairam between December 1 and December 10 includes accommodation in luxurious suites or rooms. Various entertainment and special children's programmes are offered during this period.

El Amir said The Ritz-Carlton used the slow months of June and July to totally repaint the hotel, both the exteriors and the rooms and suites, the walkways and restaurants.

The renovation also included new wooden floors for the Spa and Blue Ginger Asian restaurant.

"The look is very fascinating," said general manager Ricco De Blank.

"The hotel appears as new as the day it was open. Providing the finest personal service and facilities, enlivening the senses and fulfilling the unexpressed wishes of our guests is who we are."