The expected growth in hotel rooms in the sultanate is likely to be highest in the Middle East region if the country opens all the rooms in its pipeline, according to STR Global's recent construction pipeline report. "Among the countries in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region, Oman reported the largest expected room growth at 81.2 per cent if all 5,417 rooms in the country's total active pipeline open," said STR Global in its July 2012 report. The Middle East and Africa hotel development pipeline comprised 495 hotels totaling 125,481 rooms, according to the report.
According to latest statistics released by Oman's National Center for Statistics and Information (NCSI), the total number of guests in the sultanate's four- and five-star hotels rose by 24.6 per cent in the first half of this year to 321,500 compared to 258,000 in the same period last year. The data showed that hotel revenues increased by 13.4 per cent to RO52.7mn in the first half of this year from RO46.5mn in the corresponding period of the previous year.
Occupancy at five-star hotels increased to 59.3 per cent in the first half of this year from 52.3 per cent in the same period last year, while occupancy in four-star hotels declined to 56.4 per cent from 59 per cent a year ago.
The STR Global report added that other Gulf states also showed significant expected room growth. Saudi Arabia is expected to report a 53.9 per cent room growth with 27,624 rooms, Qatar is expected to report 47.1 per cent growth with 6,785 new rooms and UAE to report 38.6 per cent growth with 35,052 rooms included in its construction pipeline.