New opportunities for budget and mid-scale brands are constantly opening up in the hotel industry across the region, according to Ignace Bauwens, regional vice president, Wyndham Group.
Bauwens (pictured right) says that the midscale market is expanding all the time and will grow by a further five million people before 2030.
“You will see the economy brands grow faster in the UAE, Jeddah and Riyadh than other places,” says Bauwens, whose own company count Super 8, Days Inn and Travelodge among its portfolio.
“We see the change in demographics, companies and people are looking at how they can travel three or four times a year on a budget. The millennial generation is moving, it is growing in importance.”
So what about the projects that Wyndham has in the pipeline for the region?
“A 650-room Tryp by Wyndham will be opening in Dubai in the summer,” he says.
“It’s the second one in the UAE and it’s the largest one in the world. We are bringing more Wyndham family brands in here which will strengthen our name, next year we will also have the Wyndham Dubai West Bay Marina.
“Moving forward we are talking about bringing the Days Inn brand to Saudi Arabia, we will bring more Super 8 brands to the Middle East, we have already have one in Riyadh.”
Bauwens says he believes the Super 8 brand will prove to be a massive hit over here with one market in particular – Chinese travellers.
“It is a big brand that is known so well by Chinese travellers over here, so immediately that creates a massive opportunity for investors. Secondly it is a standardised brand, so people that come in will understand what they get for their money,” he says.
“It’s the right time because it’s an economy brand.”