Ascott has clinched a contract to manage three new properties in Saudi Arabia, including its first in the Islamic holy city of Makkah (Mecca).
The 280-unit Ascott Makkah, 92-unit Ascott Villas Riyadh and 69-unit Spectrums Residence in Jeddah are all slated to open in 2017.
The company is also due to open its first serviced residence, Ascott Rafal Olaya Riyadh, in November.
Located close to the new financial centre, the residence is a 20-minute drive from Riyadh King Khalid International Airport.
Ascott Rafal Olaya Riyadh offers 234 luxurious studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments. Each apartment has contemporary furnishings, a fully equipped kitchen, plus spacious dining, lounge and bedroom areas.
Business facilities comprise meeting rooms and a business centre while recreational facilities include a children’s playroom, gymnasium, steam and sauna rooms, swimming pool and residents’ lounge.
A selection of restaurants, cafés and boutiques are also available for residents’ convenience within the property.
Opening offer rates start from SAR700 (US$187) from now to December 31, 2016, inclusive of wifi, daily breakfast, daily housekeeping and parking.
Lee Chee Koon, Ascott’s CEO, said: “Religious tourism is one of the fastest growing segments in the travel industry. In Saudi Arabia, religious tourism is valued at US$5.68 billion, with 19 million pilgrims having visited Makkah and Madinah in 2015, and this is expected to reach US$30 million by 2025.
“We will further expand via management contracts in these gateway cities where we will continue to build scale. We aim to double our portfolio in the Middle East to 5,000 units by 2020.”