A revised classification system for Dubai’s hotels is being drawn up by the emirate’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM).
A new law covering the five-star system has been approved and will take effect during the first quarter of this year and will replace its 10-year-old predecessor.
DTCM Director-General Khalid A bin Sulayem said the law was intended to cover new hospitality and tourist sectors not included in the existing legislation.
Existing hotels will not have to reapply for a star rating. However, newcomers to the hospitality sector will obtain their one- to five-star ranking under the new, tougher system.
The law will revamp the requirements for hotel classification, said Bin Sulayem, adding the department had issued 17 hotel licenses and 34 licenses for hotel apartments so far this year. He said tougher quality standards would be applied and new types of hotels, such as self-service hotels, would now have to apply.
The number of visitors to Dubai reached seven million last year, according to statistics from the department. The emirate’s hotels netted earnings of up to Dh11 billion in the first 10 months of 2007, compared with Dh8.7bn in 2006.
Hotel occupancy in the emirate is the highest in the world. Last year, the rate stood between 70 per cent and 100 per cent in winter, and from 60 per cent to 90 per cent in summer,” said Bin Sulayem.
The decision was welcomed by Kempinski Hotels. “We at Kempinski will support DTCM in all its efforts to develop tourism and hospitality in Dubai and are happy to comply with the new law,” said Michael Hennsler, General Manager of Kempinski Mall of the Emirates and Regional Director of Kempinski Hotels.
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