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Hotels in Oman offer special packages to attract guests
March 6, 2016 | 10:15 PM
by Rahul Das/Erik Prins [email protected] [email protected]
The Millennium Resort, Mussanah is offering up to three guests per room at OMR40. Photo-Supplied
 
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Muscat: In an effort to boost domestic tourism within the Sultanate, several hotels under the Oman Tourism Development Company (Omran) have come up with special offers, giving attractive discounts on room tariff and dining options to attract customers. The offer is valid for seven days a week until April 30.

Luxurious Alila Jabal Akhdar which is perched on the edge of a canyon is offering breakfast with dinner at OMR90 per night for the locals and residents.

The Ras Al Jinz Turtle Reserve is offering up to three guests per room at OMR55 with breakfast and dinner buffet included. “Added to that, we are offering free evening turtle viewing and museum entry,” said an official of Ras Al Jinz Turtle Reserve Centre.

The City Hotel Duqm is offering up to three guests per room at OMR35 with breakfast and dinner buffet per night.



The Millennium Resort, Mussanah is offering up to three guests per room at OMR40 and InterContinental Muscat at OMR60 with breakfast and dinner buffet per night.

Maurice de Rooij, General Manager, Millennium Resort, Mussanah, said they are working closely with the Ministry of Tourism to drive in-country tourism among residents and citizens of Oman.



“For Millennium Mussanah, it is about giving best value for money to our guests. I think this initiative offers a great opportunity to experience various hotels in exclusive locations which, for some, would not be affordable otherwise. Now this really seems like the best deal in town,” he said.

He also said, “Building in-country tourism for the residents of Oman is a key objective for Omran and for the hospitality sector at large in the years to come. Our exclusive rate package is one of a series of incentives aimed at stimulating the hospitality market for Omani nationals and residents of Oman to rejuvenate and enjoy a break with their family and friends at our unique resorts and hotels that span across the Sultanate.”

But are these offers because of economic situation in the region?

A senior official of a leading hotel in Muscat said they have been affected by the economic situation in the region.

Occupancy rates

“Our occupancy rates are stagnating around 75 to 85 per cent, which is lower than expected in this season. There is a lot of pressure on the average rates because of the macro-economic factors pushing the prices down in the entire region.”Commenting on the question whether his hotel has lowered its prices, he said that they are “more competitive in the market.”

“We have offers and we are looking at other areas and pockets of business we can fill, such as weekends where we can be more flexible with our rate structures and packages with golf or wadi tours. I am hopeful that, together with the Ministry of Tourism, there can be some improvement in the occupancy levels,” he said.

Another hotel, Park Inn, which focuses more on business travellers, feels the pressure in another way.

Sales Manager Ajay Dogra said bookings in January were on the lower side due to the lower oil prices. “The year 2016 doesn’t look that healthy. Projects are on hold and consultants travelling to Oman will not travel unless it’s really required.

“We have reduced the prices by 10 to 15 per cent as we faced strong resistance from clients. In addition, the costs of operation has gone up, as the fuel prices have increased and suppliers have raised their prices,” he said.

However, Julian Ayers, Regional Vice-President for India and the Middle East of Alila Hotels and Resorts, said they have not decreased their prices, since they had “a good season.”

“We haven’t slashed our prices at all. We did introduce a special offer for local Omanis to give a chance to come and see the property.”

He said these rates are about 30 per cent lower than regular rates. He added that it is an initiative of the Ministry of Tourism and Omran, which owns the hotel in Al Jabal Al Akhdar, to attract more Omanis to Omran-owned hotels.

According to the figures provided by the National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI), the total occupancy rate in 3-5 star hotels decreased from 63.6 per cent in December 2014 to 63.3 per cent during December 2015.



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