RAK accelerates investment in tourism

An artist’s impression of The Al Marjan Island: Ras Al Khaimah’s largest tourism intiative

RAK Tourism, the organisation that supports, promotes and attracts tourism initiatives in Ras Al Khaimah, showcased its new developments during ATM. Partners from the emirate included Al Hamra Fort Beach Resort, Khatt Springs Hotel and Spa, Al Hamra Golf, RAK Airways, RAK International Airport, Hilton Ras Al Khaimah & Hilton Beach Resort and Spa, and RAKEEN.

“We have achieved great success in placing Ras Al Khaimah on the global map, as shown by the emirate’s robust annual growth rates in the tourism sector. Ras Al Khaimah is positioning itself as an authentic Arabian tourist attraction, providing visitors a unique mix of rich cultural heritage and state-of-the-art amenities that will make their RAK adventure a truly wonderful and relaxing experience,” said D. Khater Massaad, CEO, Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority (RAKIA) and advisor to the crown prince and deputy ruler of Ras Al Khaimah.
Ras Al Khaimah has experienced significant growth in the number of visitors, as 2007 statistics revealed an annual footfall of over 500,000. Within the next four years, experts project this figure to increase by a phenomenal 400 per cent, reaching over 2.5 million visitors annually by 2012, largely as a result of the emirate’s continued heavy investments to harness its leisure, business and eco-tourism potential.
Hotels in Ras Al Khaimah collectively recorded an average occupancy rate of up to 93 per cent as tourists are taking advantage of more competitive hotel rates in Ras Al Khaimah, which are up to 40 per cent lower than in other emirates.
Several key developments are expected to further consolidate the emirate’s tourism industry, including premium hotels, major golf courses and other tourism-oriented properties that are due to be delivered in the market as early as 2009, as well as the RAK International Airport that has been undergoing a major upgrade to handle over 1.2 million passengers also by 2009.
Ras Al Khaimah emerging fast as a major tourist destination was the strategic message delivered during ATM 2008.
“The Ras Al Khaimah government and its partners in the private sector have acted swiftly in response to the growing number of tourists, commissioning several new developments to enhance the emirate’s tourism infrastructure and expand the amenities and facilities for both leisure and business travellers,” said Hilary McCormack, anager, RAK Tourism.