Qataris to invest $500m in Turkish 'dry' hotels
A hospitality company based in Qatar is set to invest at least $500 million in Turkish hotels operating under Islamic customs, with no alcohol or smoking allowed.

Semi state-owned Retaj Marketing and Project Management is looking to build multiple hotels to attract hidebound conservative Muslim holidaymakers in Turkey.

Spokesman Ahmed Khorshed said demand for 'dry' hotels in Qatar was booming. He said, "In the beginning it was very hard to predict if there would be demand for creating such a hotel in Doha. But we have found that the demand for 'Islamic' hotels is more than at regular hotels. For example the year-to-date occupancy in Doha hotels is 63 percent, whereas the occupancy at our hotels is 87 percent."

The company has just signed a deal to take over a five-star hotel in front of the Islamic Museum in Doha. Plans are in the works to expand the brand across the region, beginning with the UAE and Kuwait in 2012.

"Our plan for the next five years is to reach 20 hotels in the Middle East. We want to open in Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and the UAE -- Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah; as well as Egypt, Malaysia, Turkey and Indonesia -- any country that can accept the Islamic way of running a hotel."
Posted by: ryuge 2011-11-27