SUnaina Rana / Emirates Business
Danat Al Ain Resort is located in Al Ain, the famous ‘Garden City of the Gulf’, a haven of peace and tranquility. The oasis city is renowned for its abundant greenery and spectacular mountain range. This spectacular place is just 5-minute drive from Al Ain town centre providing a fantastic base to enjoy all that Al Ain has to offer.
The resort is located in the Eastern region of Abu Dhabi, about
75-minutes drive from Dubai and 90-minutes drive from Abu Dhabi. The resort offers 216 rooms with
balconies and a serene view of the lush green gardens on one side and the Jebel Hafeet Mountain on the other.
Soaked in heritage and culture, Al Ain city also offers a lot of exciting recreational activites which include —Al Ain Museum, Al Ain Wildlife Park and Resort, Jebel Hafeet Mountain, plus 18-hole sand golf course.
Talking to Emirates Business Ahmed Margoushy, General Manager, Danat Al Ain Resort, discusses the trends of tourism industry and its
effect on the resort.
The GCC countries are seeing rapid growth in tourism sector. However, do fluctuating oil prices affect the hotel industry?
Yes we have seen decline in the number of tourist arrivals from key markets which has greatly affected the hotel industry. But the decline is also attributed to several factors such as the plummeting oil prices, currency fluctuations and uncertain conditions in the region.
The fluctuating oil prices have been a great concern to all the industries in the region, and hospitality has not been any different. We have witnessed a drop of 10 percent as compared to last year.
What is the percentage of contribution of the hotel industry in the economy of the nation?
Hotel industry is one of the important elements contributing to the economy of any nation, as it is one of the most important infrastructure to host big events, meetings, sports delegations and medical conferences, exhibitions, etc.
However, as you are aware, some country’s main income is coming from the tourism industry and of course hotels are one of the main contributors to the economy.
How do you chalk down the strategies and the future planning for your hotel? What is at the top of your priority list?
We have very methodically analysed the functioning, first we would like to focus on improving the guest experience and customer satisfaction at our resort. Second, we also been working on planning attractive packages and promotions for our customers.
Lastly, we would consciously monitor expenses of the organisation and aim for smart spending.
As a General Manager, what are the significant aspects you need to keep in mind at the time of planning the strategy?
Being a General Manager, I have the responsibility of managing the resort at minimal cost plus maintaining the quality and supremacy of the resort by giving the guest an unforgettable experience during their stay.
In the coming future do you have any plans of investing, in regard to new recruitments, perks? How do you keep your staff motivated?
We have a regular turnover of staff which we have to replace regularly as per business demand.
With regards to staff motivation we impart continuous training to our workforce, conduct team building exercises and organising events like recreational outings, staff recognition programmes, etc.
What are the additional elements that need to be added to the future arrangements of your hotel that can be beneficial for your hotel’s further growth?
We have been working on the new strategies, out of which one of them involves a venture into new markets. It would help in attracting alternative source of business that can capture the shortfall of the corporate and GCC segments.
Any big event lined up, what strategy have you made to diversify the services and generate revenue?
It is commendable the contribution that the Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority has been making and we also appreciate its efforts towards working actively on creating events and activities which will attract additional traffic to Abu Dhabi and the city of Al Ain as well.