Muscat: Oman’s Ministry of Tourism is making accommodation in the Sultanate more affordable for everyone in order to cater to a wider market by approving the establishment of 24 low-budget hotels, an official from the Ministry of Tourism said.
More than 80 per cent of all the hotels that are set to open in 2019 will be three stars and below, according to data by the ministry.
“The ministry always ensures a balance between the demand and supply of each category level of hotel in the market. Therefore, if there is a demand for a service, then the ministry begins to work on increasing this service, as a failure to do so will lead to an imbalance in prices,” an investor specialist from the Ministry of Tourism said.
“If the rooms from hotels that are three stars and below decrease, the price of this service will increase and will be more than its value.
“That is why it is important for the ministry to [strike a] balance between supply and demand,” the official added.
“According to data from January 1, 2019, to December 31, 2019, there will be 31 hotels including resorts that are expected to open, with a total of 3,264 rooms.”
Muscat is set to have three new five-star hotels, another three four-star hotels, five hotels classified as three star, six two-star hotels and three one-star hotels. This brings the total number of hotels set to open in Muscat in 2019 to 20.
“The launch of five-star hotels this year such as the W, JW Marriott, and Hilton will represent the opening of more than a thousand luxury rooms added to the governorate of Muscat alone,” the official added.
Additionally, 21 hotel apartment projects are expected to be launched with a capacity of 559 apartments. Other hotel establishments that are expected to be launched this year include “one tourist camp with a total of 10 rooms, 33 hospitality inns, and guest houses with a total of 150 rooms”, added the official.
According to data revealed to Times of Oman by the ministry, a total of 29 hotels have received approval by the Ministry of Tourism. In total, 86 establishments have been granted approvals to establish various tourism projects in the Sultanate.
Al Buraimi, Dhofar, and Musandam governorates will each have a new hotel this year. “Musandam is set to open a two-star hotel project with a capacity of 48 rooms. Al Buraimi is set to open a four-star hotel this year with 243 rooms, and Dhofar is set to have a one-star hotel with 101 rooms,” the official said.
Despite not opening any new hotels, A’Dhakiliyah is set to have 20 new hospitality inns, hostels and guest houses this year, more than any other governorate in Oman, with nearly 100 rooms.
The only tourist camp that is set to open in 2019 will be in Northern Sharqiyah, which already has 20 other tourist camps.
“One of the most prominent projects expected to open in 2019 is W hotel. The hotel is located in Wilayat Bausher and is expected to open in the second quarter of 2019. W hotel is classified as a five star and will comprise 279 rooms,” said the official from the ministry.
“Another hotel is Rotana Tulip hotel located in Ghubra. The four-star hotel contains 180 rooms and is expected to open in the third quarter of 2019,” added the official. “Muzun hotel is another prominent hotel set to open in the fourth quarter of 2019. Containing 132 rooms, this three-star hotel is located in Wilayat Seeb.”
Hilton Garden Inn is also set to debut in Muscat’s Al Khuwair district on February 25, 2019.
According to the Ministry, there are more than 22,000 hotel rooms spread across the Sultanate up until the end of 2018.
According to the data, there are “412 hotel establishments and 22,182 hotel rooms in Oman”. Figures also showed that the Governorate of Muscat has the highest number of hotel establishments with 155 hotels and 12,106 hotel rooms, followed by Southern Sharqiyah with 52 hotels and just over a thousand hotel rooms.
The data further revealed that 57 per cent of all the hotel establishments in Oman are located in the northern parts of the Sultanate with 238 hotels and 15,119 hotel rooms spread across Al Buraimi, Musandam, Northern Batinah, Southern Batinah and Muscat Governorates.