Skift Travel News Blog

Short stories and posts about the daily news happenings around the travel industry.

Hotels

Jumeirah Expands Further Into European Luxury Hotels

1 year ago

Jumeirah Group said on Monday it had bought the Le Richemond, a five-star hotel on Lake Geneva. The move signaled that the luxury hospitality company based in the United Arab Emirates is focused on growing worldwide in key gateway cities.

Le Richemond is the fifth European property to be acquired by Jumeirah, which operates a 6,500-key portfolio of about 25 luxury properties across the globe.

“As the gateway to the mountains of Europe, Geneva is strategically significant for us as we look to diversify our portfolio in major cities with both summer and winter resort destinations,” said Katerina Giannouka, the recently appointed CEO of Jumeirah Group.

Giannouka said she plans to hire architects and designers to renovate Le Richemond — pushing it further upscale and turning it into an “ultra-luxury” hotel by 2025.

Tourism

UAE Developer Nakheel Secures $4.6 Billion Financing to Develop Dubai Islands 

1 year ago

Dubai-based property developer Nakheel announced it has secured $4.6 billion in strategic financing deal to drive what it calls, “the new phase of growth.”

The amount includes refinancing of $3 billion, and additional funds of $1.6 billion.

The developer of Palm Jumeirah said that the finance would be utilised to accelerate the development of its new projects including Dubai Islands and other large waterfront projects.

Looking to redefine the concept of waterfront living, Nakheel announced its plan to develop another man-made island — Dubai Islands — situated along the emirate’s northern coastline, comprising five islands over a total area of 17 square kilometres.

The property developer said Dubai Islands would be home to over 80 resorts and hotels, including luxury and wellness resorts, boutique, family and eco-conscious hotels.

This year, Nakheel announced that it would also relaunch and rebrand Palm Jebel Ali, a project that has been left dormant since 2009.

Recently, one of the mansions at the Palm Jumeirah sold for $82 million, pegging it to be the most expensive house sale ever in Dubai.

The $4.6 billion financing reflects the confidence of the banking institutions in the strategic new focus of the company, a Nakheel spokesperson said.

Despite the challenges of the pandemic, Nakheel said that it has invested in building a strong assets portfolio and pipeline of new developments in the last two years.

The company attributed the robust growth of the Dubai real estate sector to regulatory reforms, such as the issuance of long-term visas, and an economy buoyed by the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors.

Hotels

Jumeirah Hires New CEO From Radisson’s Asia Operations

1 year ago

Jumeirah Group said Wednesday it hired Katerina Giannouka, a top executive for Radisson in Asia, as its new CEO. The announcement was made by Dubai Holding, a global investment firm owned by the ruler of Dubai for which Jumeirah is part of.

Giannouka, who will be taking over as the CEO in December, succeeds Jose Silva as the fifth CEO of Jumeirah. She joins Jumeirah from Radisson Hotel Group, where she serves as president of Asia Pacific. Prior to this, she led the Asia-Pacific and China development team of Rosewood Hotels & Resorts.

In an internal email sent last week, Silva had announced his decision to step down. Chief operating officer Thomas Meier had been named the interim CEO.

“Given Katerina’s (Giannouka) impressive track record as a transformative business leader, as well as her luxury hospitality background and drive to create resilient teams and culture, I am confident that she will build on Jumeirah’s incredible success story and lead the business to new levels of sustainable and accelerated growth across the world,” Amit Kaushal, Group CEO of Dubai Holding said in a press statement.

Giannouka said she’s keen to unlock the potential of the Jumeirah brand and sustainably secure its position on the world stage as the “top luxury Emirati hospitality brand recognised and sought-after globally.”

Jumeirah Group, a global luxury hotel company, which operates a 6,500-key portfolio of 25 luxury properties across the Middle East, Europe and Asia, opened new resorts in Bali and Muscat earlier this year. The group will also be opening more properties in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia in the coming months.

Hotels

Jumeirah CEO Steps Down, Thomas Meier Named Interim CEO

1 year ago

Jumeirah Group CEO José Silva said in a company email he would step down. Thomas Meier, named chief operating officer last year, will be interim CEO, as Hotelier Middle East first reported on Thursday.

For five years, Silva led the Dubai-based hotel group, championing a scale up worldwide. Silva also led a refresh of the company’s offerings, including the planned launch of the ultra-luxury Jumeirah Marsa Al Arab, Dubai, that’s expected to open in late 2023.

Meier previously worked at Minor Group and Fairmont Raffles Hotels.

See Hotelier Middle East for more

Tags: ceos, jumeirah