2 May 2011 - Dubai

Etihad Airways, Jumeirah, Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority, Raffles and Royal Caribbean were among the names to emerge victorious at World Travel Awards 2011 Middle East Ceremony, held at the Armani Hotel Dubai on 2 May 2011.

The industry’s elite – including CEOs of leading travel companies, government ministers and tourist board chiefs – attended the glittering gala event, which was headlined by Lebanese pop sensation, Elissa.

The Armani Hotel Dubai offered guests the opportunity to sample the ultimate in hospitality lifestyle, amid the magnificent setting of Burj Khalifa, the tallest skyscraper in the world.

Hailed as “The Oscars of the Travel Industry”, World Travel Awards is acknowledged across the globe as the ultimate travel accolade, and celebrates those brands that are pushing the boundaries of industry excellence.

More than 462 organisations across the Middle East, spanning more than 125 categories entered the competition.

Etihad Airways was one of the big stars on the night, walking off with an impressive four awards, including the blue riband category “Middle East’s Leading Airline”, as well as “Middle East’s Leading Airline First Class”, “Middle East’s Leading Airline Inflight Entertainment” and “Middle East’s Leading Cabin Staff”.

Meanwhile, Dubai’s miraculous rebound coupled with its insatiable eye for invention led to the emirate being voted “Middle East’s Leading Destination” as well as “Middle East’s Leading Meetings and Conference Destination”.

Abu Dhabi’s continuing rise to tourism stardom was rewarded too as it took home a host of top honours, including “Middle East’s Leading Tourist Board” and “Middle East’s Responsible Tourism Award”.

On an individual level, HRH Prince Al Waleed bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud was honoured as “Travel Personality of the Year” for the Middle East for his contribution to the global hospitality sector, which includes backing what is set to become the tallest building in the world, the mile-high Kingdom Tower in Saudi Arabia.

Graham E Cooke, President and Founder, World Travel Awards said: “The Middle East was the perfect region to mark the start of the World Travel Awards 2011 Grand Tour, setting the bar for the rest of the world to raise the standards of excellence in travel and tourism.”

Voting is still underway for Europe, Africa and Indian Ocean, Asia and Australasia and The Americas. Regional events will take place later this year in Antalya, Turkey; Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt; Bangkok, Thailand and Montego Bay, Jamaica. The Grand Final will follow at the end of the year.

Click here for the full list of Middle East winners.


Notes to Editors

About World Travel Awards
The World Travel Awards was launched in 1993 to acknowledge and recognise excellence in the world's travel and tourism industry.

Now celebrating its 18th anniversary, the awards is regarded as the very highest achievement that a travel product could ever hope to receive.

Attended by senior executives from major travel companies, operators and destinations, WTA events are universally respected as providing established, top level networking opportunities, regionally and globally.

Main sponsors include Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association, Cornelia Diamond Golf Resort & Spa, Dusit Thani Bangkok, Emaar Hotels & Resorts LLC, ISO Travel Solutions, Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority, Omeir Travel, Savoy Sharm El Sheikh, Sports Authority of Thailand, Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau, Tourism Authority of Thailand and WeClick Media.

The World Travel Award’s official list of worldwide media partners includes: Breaking Travel News, CNBC Arabiya, Khaleej Times, Trav Talk, Trade Arabia, TTN, Travel Daily News International, Focus on Travel News, New Focus Travel Magazine, Tourism Review, JAX FAX, Passport Magazine, Travel & Leisure China, Vox Africa, Xenios & Xenios World.

For further press information contact Lauren Brady
T: +44 (0)20 7925 0000
E: [email protected]
W: www.worldtravelawards.com

About Armani Hotels & Resorts

Armani Hotels & Resorts was established in 2005 under an agreement between Giorgio Armani S.p.A. and Emaar Properties, with the objective to develop, own and operate an exclusive collection of hotels, resorts and residences in the world’s most important cities and holiday destinations. Armani Hotels & Resorts plans to open at least ten hotels and resorts within the next ten years.


English Spanish Portuguese Chinese (Simplified) German French Russian

Find us on


Subscribe to the World Travel Awards newsletter to keep up to date with our latest news.

Our other awards

World Casino Awards World Cruise Awards World Culinary Awards World Golf Awards World MICE Awards World Ski Awards World Spa Awards World Travel Tech Awards