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InterContinental, Crowne Plaza and Holiday Inn growth continues across Middle East region

Travel News Asia 5 November 2002

Six Continents Hotels will use World Travel Market 2002 in London next week as a platform to promote its unique spread of hotel brands, as well as its aggressive expansion plans, in the Middle East and Africa.

Currently operating 123 InterContinental, Crowne Plaza and Holiday Inn hotels and resorts across the region, the company has 10 new properties under development, with more in the pipeline.

Starting with the superb InterContinental Garden Reef Resort Resort Sharm El Sheikh on Egypts Red Sea Riviera next month, the Six Continents Hotels expansion programme will see new properties opening in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Qatar, and Nigeria over the next two years.

Were reinforcing our position as the leading hotel group in the region, and are using WTM to highlight the growing presence of the InterContinental, Crowne Plaza and Holiday Inn brands there, said Denis Johnson, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Six Continents Hotels, Middle East and Africa.

InterContinental developments

Creating a superb new location for leisure travellers, conferences and incentives, the 422-room InterContinental Garden Reef Resort Sharm El Sheikh will become the sixth InterContinental property in Egypt when it opens next month.

Built in Andalusian and Moorish architectural style, it has stunning views of the Red Sea and the Sinai Mountains. The property is located in the spectacular El Pacha Bay, with an exclusive and private 350 meters beach area with direct access to the famous Near, Middle and Far Garden snorkeling areas.

Also under development are three more Egyptian hotels the InterContinental Heliopolis Cairo (opening summer 2003), the InterContinental Soma Bay Resort (autumn 2003), and the InterContinental Resort Taba Heights (September 2003) as well as the InterContinental Aqaba in Jordan (Autumn 2004). The InterContinental Le Metropole Alexandria and the InterContinental Windsor Palace Alexandria, operated by Six Continents Hotels since the signing of the management contract in April, will open officially later this year.

Crowne Plaza developments

The Crowne Plaza portfolio in the Middle East expanded last month with the rebranding of the Amra Crowne Plaza Amman, which became the brands second property in Jordan and the 12th in the Middle East and Africa.

The former Amra Forum hotel has undergone a four-year, multi-million dollar renovation. New choices for diners include Zaytouneh, a new Mediterranean themed restaurant located on the pool terrace, and the Shehrazad rooftop restaurant, offering an array of Arabic delicacies.

The rebranding in Jordan followed the opening of Lebanons first Crowne Plaza hotel this summer. The Crowne Plaza Beirut, a key venue for business travellers and event organisers, is just a short stroll from the Corniche, 15 minutes from the airport, and has 168 rooms and 31 suites overlooking the Mediterranean. One of five properties in Lebanon managed by Six Continents Hotels, it offers excellent conference and banqueting facilities, including a grand ballroom catering for 600 people, five natural daylight conference rooms, an intimate rosewood boardroom, as well as a fully equipped business center, with extensive in-house audio-visual support.

Holiday Inn developments

Holiday Inn strengthens its presence in Saudi Arabia next month when the Holiday Inn Resort Half Moon Bay officially opens, becoming the brands ninth property in the Kingdom. The resort offers 60 one and two bedroom villas with kitchenettes, parking and maids rooms. The villas, as well as a further 42 guest rooms, are located around a lagoon, with three adjacent swimming pools.

Next summer, the emirate of Qatar becomes a new Holiday Inn destination with the opening of the Holiday Inn Doha. Also under development are the Holiday Inn Heliopolis in Cairo (opening winter 2003), the Holiday Inn Resort Taba also in Egypt (winter 2004), and the Holiday Inn Port Harcourt in Nigeria (summer 2004), while the the Holiday Inn Resort Alexandria officially opens later this year.

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