The year 2016 is set to be a banner year for Saudi Arabia’s hospitality industry.
After experiencing relatively slow but steady growth since 2006, the number of hotel rooms across the Kingdom suddenly soared in 2015, increasing by over 100 per cent in just a year.
This trend is set to continue, with 16,000 new hotel rooms in Riyadh and Jeddah slated for completion in 2018. The government’s plans will be supported by a budget of over $628 billion.
Much of this budget will be allocated to hospitality, in order to support the expected influx of tourists over the next few years. Inbound tourism to the Kingdom is forecasted to increase by 13 per cent annually, with Makkah and Madinah alone receiving 25 million visitors by 2020.
These visitors will require accommodation, and the Saudi hospitality market is rising to meet this challenge. Hospitality chains in Saudi Arabia are not simply looking to provide rooms; but the best rooms, supported by the latest technology to enhance guest experience and streamline processes.
With this aim in mind, business facilitation company Naseba has partnered with Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP) – the world’s leading global hospitality association and organisers of HITEC – to produce the upcoming Hotel Technology Summit, taking place from March 20-21, 2016 in Riyadh.
The summit will introduce pre-qualified hotel technology buyers from Saudi Arabia to global technology providers in a platform designed to create the ultimate deal flow. Over 120 leading decision makers from the hospitality sector will come together at this private platform to discuss developments in hotel technology, tackle the challenges of catering to millennial guests as well as sharing insights garnered with years of experience in a constantly changing industry.
Director of information technology, Burj Rafal Hotel Kempinski, Mohamed Gharib said: “Saudi Arabia is one of the top 35 countries around the world in terms of using IT technology. As it has become part of the daily life of Saudi people, our guests depend on many forms of technology to measure hotel services.”
Gharib will be speaking at the summit, joining a lineup of other hospitality leaders.
The summit is also hosting well-established technology providers such as Cisco, Infor, Zohoor AlReef, Nawat, Interlabz Technologies and many others. Media partners include TTG MENA, Travel and Tour World, ehotelier, Hospitality Business Middle East and Hsyndicate.