Four Seasons Offers Seconds in Dubai

Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts has opened its second property in the City of Gold.

By Barbra Murray, Contributing Editor

Four Seasons Hotel Dubai International Financial Centre
Four Seasons Hotel Dubai International Financial Centre

Dubai, United Arab EmiratesDubai’s hospitality market is attracting a lot of attention, and Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts has added another property to the largest city in the United Arab Emirates with the opening of the 106-key Four Seasons Hotel Dubai International Financial Centre.

It was in November 2014 when Four Seasons made its entrée into Dubai with the debut of Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach, but in this city of well-heeled globetrotters, two is better than one. “Dubai is a well-established destination for both business and leisure travelers. As a key gateway city serviced by major international airlines, Dubai’s easy access and the richness of its offerings make it a popular destination for global and intra-regional travelers,” Sorya Gaulin, director of global corporate public relations and social media with Four Seasons, told Commercial Property Executive.

Four Seasons DIFC came to fruition through Four Seasons’ development partnership with U.A.E.-based holding company Bright Start LLC. Surrounded by the premier restaurants and shops found in the city’s business district, the luxury eight-story hotel features a host of high-end accommodations, including a spa, cigar room and an exclusive rooftop oasis with a swimming pool and juice bar. But it’s a Four Seasons property, so the amenities don’t stop there. The hotel also offers such extras as access to personal shoppers, business assistants and art consultants, and of course, privileges at the Jumeirah Beach location.

Four Seasons DIFC may be the newest kid on the block but it won’t be for long, as hotel developers are quite keen on the market, with five-star properties leading the pool of new projects, according to a new report by commercial real estate services firm JLL. Four Seasons, however, is unfazed by the competition. “Although there is a good supply of luxury hotel brands in Dubai, the unparalleled service, understated elegance and distinct urban and resort experiences that Four Seasons offers truly set us apart in the market, catering to the needs of each and every guest,” Gaulin said.

The international hotel development community has good reason to target Dubai. Tourist arrivals continued on the upswing in 2015, increasing 7.5 percent year-over-year to 14.2 million, according to the JLL report. And the figure is destined to rise, as Dubai has been on a tourism campaign for the last 10 years, with the goal of reaching 20 million visitors by 2020. Something’s working. Dubai International Airport surpassed London-Heathrow in 2014 as the world’s busiest airport in terms of international passenger traffic, according to Airports Council International.

Dubai, however, is just one increasingly popular UAE destination. Abu Dhabi is also on Four Seasons’ radar, and the company will open the 238-key Four Seasons Hotel Abu Dhabi at Al Maryah Island in May.

Four Seasons is no newbie in the Gulf—Four Seasons Hotel Doha in Qatar recently marked its 10-year anniversary—but it is now endeavoring to expedite its growth in the area. The company opened  Four Seasons Hotel Bahrain Bay in March 2015 and will deliver Four Seasons Hotel Kuwait at Burj Alshaya within the next 12 months. Gaulin added, “With a pipeline of more than 50 projects under development, several in the Gulf as well as in the greater Middle East region, Four Seasons is positioned to strategically expand its presence in this priority market for luxury hospitality.”