IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) is continuing to expand its footprint across Saudi Arabia with the signing of voco Makkah in partnership with Maad International, among the Kingdom’s largest hospitality real estate development companies. The property will be the largest voco in the world, when operational in early 2020, and it will cater to the growing number of religious tourists in KSA. The 4,200-room hotel will take IHG’s portfolio in the country to over 19,500 rooms, solidifying IHG’s position as one of the largest hospitality players in Saudi Arabia.
voco Makkah will occupy a premium location within the greater Maad Hospitality Towers Development, a mega mixed-used development that includes restaurants, lounge areas, event halls and separate male and female prayer halls. Situated in one of the most sought-after locations in the Holy City, the new hotel is within walking distance of Masjid Al Haram, and it will provide an ideal base for pilgrims along with an exceptional guest experience including over 20,000 sqm of dining and meeting facilities.
voco, IHG’s upscale brand combines the informality and charm of an individual hotel with the quality and reassurance of a global and respected brand. The brand allows guests to enjoy an upscale experience with the freshness of a unique, independent hotel under a name they can trust. Since being launched globally just over a year ago, voco has enjoyed rapid growth with multiple signings across the Middle East. After the signing of voco Al Khobar earlier this year, voco Makkah will be the second voco branded hotel in Saudi Arabia. voco Makkah will also be IHG’s fourth hotel in Makkah.
Pascal Gauvin, Managing Director, India, Middle East & Africa, IHG said: “We are honoured to enter into this agreement with Maad International, which is one of the most renowned hospitality development companies in the Kingdom. They have a unique vision not only for the hotel sector but also for Saudi Arabia as a sought-after destination. We are also proud to add this landmark property to our longstanding portfolio in KSA. Having opened our first hotel InterContinental Riyadh in 1975, we have gained significant experience and expertise in running successful operations in KSA, and particularly in Makkah.”
He added: “Religious tourism is expected to increase further year on year to gradually reach 30 million visitors by 2030. We look forward to catering to the influx of pilgrims at voco Makkah, which will provide a welcoming, comfortable and a reliably different experience during the Hajj and Umrah seasons.”
IHG currently operates 92 hotels across 7 brands in the Middle East, including: InterContinental Hotels and Resorts, Crowne Plaza Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Staybridge Suites, voco and Six Senses with a further 38 in the development pipeline due to open within the next three to five years.**
**Numbers as of March 31st, 2019