Times of Oman
You’re too late: Hotels fully booked for holiday
November 29, 2017 | 8:12 PM
by Rahul Das/Gautam Viswanathan
Many hotels are operating at full capacity and the few rooms left are expected to be gone by the weekend
 
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Muscat: People in Oman who have waited until the very last minute to book a staycation for the upcoming National Day holidays are out of luck, as most hotels are now full. The bumper break, from December 1 to 5, means a five-day holiday for most residents, slap bang in the middle of an already bustling tourist season.

With September to April traditionally being Oman’s peak tourist season, many hotels are operating at full capacity during the weekend and the days beyond, and have laid on plenty of offers for residents and tourists alike.

And some resorts have come up with “daystay” packages to cope with demand, where couples can enjoy the facilities for the day, without having to book a room.

“We are quite full at the moment, and what few rooms we have to spare will also be gone by this weekend,” said Dr. Mary Ann Roberta, director, marketing and development for Al Nahda Hotels and Resorts.



“For Dunes by Al Nahda, we currently offer a luxury tent for OMR129, inclusive of breakfast, but the prices change because of occupancy. “People are really excited about the days in the resort,” she added.

“For OMR47, we have a great day spend offer for couples, who can enjoy their lunch by the pool, complete with beverages and a camel ride.”

Up in the mountains, Anantara Jabal Akhdar are also operating at full occupancy levels.

“The upcoming holidays in Oman are coinciding with the UAE National Day holidays as well, so this long weekend is bringing demand from both countries,” said Firas Rashid, director of sales and marketing at the resort.“Because both nations have their holidays at the same time, we have become one of the top hotels for visitors in the GCC.”

Vijay Handa, Cluster General Manager, Ras al Jinz Turtle Reserve Centre and Masirah Island Resort, said: “We are fully booked during this holiday season and can only offer premium rooms to our guests.”

Oman’s oldest hotel, the Intercontinental Hotel Muscat, is also experiencing high guest volumes.

“We are very busy on the weekend because it is fully booked. The occupancy after that is manageable,” said Eunice Fernando, director of marketing and communications for Intercontinental Hotel. “We do have a special rate going for these holidays, where people can get a room with free Wi-Fi and gym, sauna, spa and pool access for OMR47, excluding taxes and service charges. We also have exclusive food and beverage offers for our guests.”

Praveen George, GM (Sales) for Al Falaj Hotel, said: “The holidays see people make many last-minute travel decisions, so we began our campaign only yesterday. We do get good numbers during these days.”

Other cities in Oman are also expecting high customer volumes. In Oman’s northern outpost of Musandam, Six Senses Zighy Bay (SSZB) is also looking forward to welcoming tourists this and next week.

“We have premium rates this weekend, because both countries’ holidays are at the same time, but we still have some rooms available after that,” said Aaron McGrath, general manager for SSZB. “We have good occupancy during those periods, and we welcome residents of Oman to come here to Musandam and spend their long weekend with us.”

“We have started receiving enquiries for our hotels in Muscat and Duqm, and we expect to have more pick-up in the coming days with last minute bookings closer to the public holidays,” said Baiju Krishnan, executive assistant manager for Park Inn. “We will have guests with families mainly from Oman, UAE and other GCC countries during the long public holidays.

“We have special promotional rates for both our hotels in Muscat and Duqm, which will apply until the first week of December,” he added.

Over in Salalah, the Rotana resort is also operating at peak capacity.

“Some of our rooms do go for about OMR50 to 60, but we also have those that are going for OMR150,” said Rhoda Nuhu, assistant director of marketing and communications at Rotana Salalah.“This is the peak season for us, all the way until April, but we do have special offers for residents in Oman for the upcoming holidays.”

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