Saudi Arabia and UAE leading Radisson Hotel Group expansion in 2021

Area senior vice president reveals plans to roll out nine projects across the two countries next year

The group aims to open six hotels across the kingdom and three within the UAE over the course of the upcoming year.

Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates will continue to be key markets for Radisson Hotel Group in 2021 despite the ‘negative effects of 2020’, according to the company’s area senior vice president for Middle East and Africa.

Tim Cordon said the group aims to open six hotels across the kingdom and three within the UAE over the course of the upcoming year.

“One of my core beliefs is that regardless of the negative effects that came into being, there are always new opportunities that arise as a result. Those who understand the new definition of ‘normal’, adapt and respond, will be able to benefit from these new opportunities,” said Cordon.

“With that in mind we are busy preparing ourselves for an exciting year to come. From our second Radisson Collection in Saudi Arabia, the first Radisson Resort in Ras Al Khaimah to the group’s first hotel on Palm Jumeirah, 2021 has a lot in store for us,” he continued.

The latter period of this year saw the gradual recovery of the hospitality sector across some Middle Eastern countries, which provided a degree of optimism, said Cordon.

“While the recovery speed of the hospitality industry will be determined by the vaccine, and will be different based on the countries and areas around the world, many countries in Middle East have already started to see a recovery in the fourth quarter of 2020, be it from the domestic or international market,” explained Cordon.

Radisson Hotel Group’s area SVP for the Middle & Africa Tim Cordon

“Across the region, government’s stringent safety measures and innovative efforts have played a vital role in supporting businesses in their recovery while safeguarding the people. Once the vaccine becomes available, this will significantly improve our industry’s performance, and until then we need to remain optimistic and positive, listen to our team, be flexible, and make decisions quickly,” he continued.

In October, Radisson Group announced they were planning to open ten properties in Saudi Arabia in the next 12 months, with a particular focus on the kingdom’s capital Riyadh.

Back then, Basel Talal, regional director for Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the Levant at Radisson, told Arabian Business the company had “huge” expansion plans for Saudi Arabia. The group’s current portfolio in the kingdom consists of over 45 hotels, resorts, and serviced apartments in operation and under development.

The planned projects for 2021 will bring Radisson’s total number of hotels, resorts and serviced apartments in the Middle East to 120 – both under-development and operational.

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