ZURICH, Switzerland — Construction is under way on Swissôtel Hotels & Resorts’ first hotel in the Middle East: Swissôtel Makkah in Saudi Arabia. The international hotel chain expects the hotel to open in January 2011.
The new Swissôtel Makkah is going to have 1571 guest rooms, including 88 suites, spread over 53 floors, with half of all the rooms and suites enjoying a view of the Holy Mosque. The centrally located hotel will have four restaurants serving authentic Arabic and European cuisine, an Executive Lounge, two meeting rooms measuring 75m² and a Business Centre available to guests, according to a press release issued by the chain today.
“Since we are at home in so many parts of the world, we are especially pleased that we will now be represented in the Middle East as well,” commented Meinhard Huck, President Swissôtel Hotels & Resorts, conitnuing “We will definitely look into further opportunities for expanding our business in this market in the future”.
The new deluxe hotel in the Holy city is part of the Abraj Al Bait Complex developed by Saudi Binladin Group in the Development of King Abdul Aziz Endowment Project. The Saudi Binladin Group (SBG) is a multinational construction conglomerate and holding company for the assets owned by the Binladin family, founded in 1950 and headquartered in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
The city of Makkah is located in the west of Saudi Arabia close to Jeddah. It is the birthplace of Mohammed, the Prophet of Islam, making it the Holiest city in the Islamic world. Every year hundreds of thousands of Muslims make the journey to this place of pilgrimage and to the Holy Kaaba. The height of the travel season at Makkah takes place during the annual Hajj pilgrimage and the Holy month of Ramadan when the Holy city welcomes over three million pilgrims for the Hajj alone.