Younger and newer hotels have made Qatar’s hospitality as one of the best in the Middle East, Al Asmakh Valuations and Research Director Gaurav Borikar has said.
As reported, over 12 million online reviews between April 1, 2018 and March 31, 2019 have acknowledged the merit of Qatar’s hospitality sector and ranked best in the Middle East.
When compared to other neighbouring countries, Borikar said, Qatar has younger and newer hotels with up to date specifications and user-friendly technology.
Qatar has currently a total of about 132 hotels of 3 to 5-star categories with around 26,700 rooms. Out of this figure, the 5-star group consists of about 12,320 rooms comprising 46 percent of total rooms available. The 4-star hotel segment has about 8,000 rooms, about 30 percent of total rooms available.
“Based on our survey, the annualised Average Daily Rate (ADR) is about QR530 in 5-star category, about QR230 in 4-star and QR180 in 3-star categories. The hotel located in West Bay and West Bay lagoon areas secure about 70 percent higher ADR when compared to those which are placed in an around the Doha downtown,” he said.
The average annualised occupancy in 5-star categories is about 65 percent, in 4-star about 68 percent, in 3-star about 75 percent and in budget segment about 78 percent.
“The hotels under the 5-star category are generally larger in size with higher number of rooms per hotel. This is the main reason for having lower occupancy in this class,” he said.
The annualised RevPAR in the hotels under the 5-star category is about QR350, in 4-star is about QR160, and in 3-star category is about QR135.
“In the highly competitive hotel industry, hotels have to find creative new ways to differentiate their properties and services. For instance, booking aggregator sites often emphasise getting the best deal possible over more qualitative factors, and many consumers plan entire adventures without ever speaking to the concierge. The industry is changing so does the Qatar hospitality market,” he said.
“Today’s hotel executive needs to master balancing act, delivering personalised guest experiences leading up to a stay, on-property and post-stay, to a customer base that is increasingly determined to use self-service tools whenever possible,” he added.
Qatar requires about 60,000 rooms to accommodate the guests for FIFA 2022. Currently, Qatar has about 28,000 rooms across all categories, including the budget hotels. Moreover, about 2,500 rooms in service apartments.
“As per our survey, about 13 luxury hotels are under various stage of construction. Upon completion, about 2,935 rooms are expected to be delivered. In addition, about 10 luxury hotels are planned that are likely to contribute about 2,850 rooms upon their completion,” Borikar said.
Altogether, the inventory is just over half the way to the milestone. This indicates the anticipated optimistic behavior of the hospitality sector in the long run.
“Hoteliers in Qatar are faced with a difficult question. They’re confident in their adoption of the changing regional economy, but when the field changes so quickly, are they doing enough to stay competitive,” he said.
“It is necessary now to empower guests to take advantage of self-service tools. The industry’s willingness to meet guests where they are, instead of attempting to force them into more traditional interactions, is a positive development. It’s important to keep guests in the fold, as it were, to build customer loyalty. It’s also important to provide a clear path to more traditional support channels when needed,” he said.