Both the hospitality and real estate sectors in Saudi city of Makkah are recording solid growth during the Hajj season, driven by various factors, most notably the remarkable increase in hotel occupancy rates compared to the previous year, according to Engineer Abdulaziz bin Saleh Al Aboudi, the CEO of Saudi-based Thakher Development Company.

A leading player in Saudi real estate sector, Thakher is the master developer of the $7-billion Thakher Makkah project spanning an area of 320,000 sq m on a prime site in Makkah.

On completion, the massive project will boast about 100 land plots for the development for hotels and residential, commercial, and service-related facilities.

Al Aboudi said the hotel occupancy rates in Makkah have reached 100% with the Novotel Thakher Makkah hotel leading the race.

"This substantial increase in occupancy comes in contrast to the 80% rate observed during the last Ramadan, while the corresponding period in 2022 recorded 60% occupancy rate," he noted.

Al Aboudi attributed this remarkable performance to several factors, most notably hosting of over 2 million pilgrims this year, after a series of government decisions that have provided comprehensive facilities to serve pilgrims, leading to a substantial rise in numbers this Hajj season.

He pointed out that this performance was indicative of a prosperous time for the construction and hospitality sectors.

Al Aboudi said: "We are committed to leveraging this opportunity to contribute to the local economy and create lasting infrastructure that serves both pilgrims and the community in the long run."

"As part of our commitment, we are developing the infrastructure and master plan according to the specified timeline for both, and we recently inaugurated the Park Inn by Radisson hotel, which has obtained the Hajj license for this year," he noted.

Al Aboudi pointed out that the current strong performance is likely to persist in the years to come, thus confirming "the impressive success of the ambitious vision of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, which aims to accommodate 30 million Umrah performers and 6 million pilgrims by 2030."

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