Trade Arabia

2nd May 2012


The Middle East’s most successful travel brands will vie for top honours at a glittering gala ceremony hosted by World Travel Awards (WTA) in Jebel Ali Golf Resort & Spa, Dubai on Monday.

The likes of Jumeirah, Emirates, Etihad Airways, Armani Hotel Dubai, Qatar Airways, Emirates Palace and Rotana Hotels are among those in the running for the WTA awards, said the organisers of the WTA awards programme, dubbed as the ‘Oscars of the travel industry.’

The evening coincides with the Arabian Hotel Investment Conference and Arabian Travel Market (April 30 to May 3), which are both taking place in Dubai.

Lebanese singing sensation Carole Samaha will headline the show, with the critically-acclaimed comedian Wonho Chung also set to perform. Ece Vahapoglu of Al Jazeera Turkey will anchor proceedings.

More than 500 of the most important decision-makers in the region’s travel and tourism sector, as well as a host of international media, are set to attend what will be the most important night of the year for Arabian travel.

The WTA awards programme highlights and rewards those travel brands that have made the greatest contribution to the industry over the past year.

After a fierce round of voting featuring more than 2,000 organisations, the nominees have been whittled down to the elite few.

Categories to watch include “Middle East’s Leading Destination” with Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia in contention. Competition for “Middle East’s Leading Hotel” is expected to be fierce, with Emirates Palace (Abu Dhabi), Burj Al Arab (Dubai), Six Senses Zighy Bay (Oman) and the Ritz-Carlton Doha (Qatar) among those going head-to-head.

Graham E. Cooke, the president & founder, WTA, underlines the core strengths of the Middle East nominees.

“Travel and tourism in the Middle East is rebounding strongly following the political and economic challenges of 2011. The winners at our ceremony will be those organisations that have made the greatest contribution to this recovery,” he stated.

“I am delighted that we will be returning to Dubai for what promises to be the most exciting and competitive Middle East Ceremony yet. The emirate is a hotbed of fresh ideas being put into practice, as exemplified by our host, Jebel Ali Golf Resort & Spa,” he added.

Jebel Ali Golf Resort & Spa is the flagship resort of Jebel Ali International Hotels, and consists of two five-star properties, Palm Tree Court & Spa, which has recently undergone a full refurbishment, and Jebel Ali Hotel, which offers views over the Arabian Gulf and a championship-standard nine-hole golf course.

David Thomson, the regional general manager of Jebel Ali International Hotels expresses his pleasure at hosting the event, saying: “We are delighted that the leaders of the Middle East travel industry will celebrate their achievements at Jebel Ali Golf Resort & Spa this Monday. The awards are an accurate representation of excellence and it is a true honour to be nominated alongside other leading hotel groups.”

Other regional heats in WTA’s Grand Tour 2012 will be taking place in the Algarve (Portugal), Nairobi (Kenya), Singapore and Turks & Caicos. The winners of these regional heats will progress to the Grand Final, which will take place at The Oberoi, Gurgaon, New Delhi on December 12.

Article taken from Trade Arabia.

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