Hospitality Industry Update Q4 2015

Hospitality Industry Update Q4 2015

According to Mr. Ben-Mahmoud from JLL, The Middle East and Africa region continues to witness strong hotel development and interest.

It also has a “differentiated and diverse strategies, supported by strong infrastructure programmes as well as niche and specialised hospitality offerings such as heritage, boutique and retreat hotels.”

These infrastructure programs Ben-Mahmoud mentions is due to heavy government spending to attract more tourists through their doors, since the region has seen an increase in publicity from the winning of super events such as Qatar 2022 and Dubai 2020.

Securing these events has promised a high increase in demand for workers in the industry. With an additional 35,000 rooms needed in Dubai and additional 70,000 rooms in Qatar, this will create a huge increase in demand for hospitality workers in and around the hotels and hospitality sector.

A ripple effect will be seen across it’s neighbouring countries also, with the close proximity many of the Gulf countries have to one another, it provides opportunities not only for those countries lucky enough to secure such events.

Saudi Arabia for example, in an article published on al-Arabiya, is said to expect the tourism sector to create 1.7 million jobs by 2020, which includes the hospitality industry according to President of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities, Prince Sultan Bin Salman.

However, in many cases, although there is a demand for hospitality workers now, demand is not anticipated to spike until infrastructure is fully complete.

Looking ahead to the future, it seems 2017 will be the busiest in terms of hiring across the entire region according to, with 30 projects opening to the public including the first fully solar powered hotel, Hotel Indigo Dubai in the Sustainable City and a plethora of new luxury hotels.

concierge, hotel, hospitality

Lets take a look at each country:


Dubai plans to need approximately 100,000 hotel rooms by the time Expo 2020 begins, in order to cater for the sheer of visitors arriving in the beautiful country. With approximately 65,000 rooms currently available in Dubai, the further 35,000 rooms needed to meet the required demand within the next few years will be either built from scratch or expanded to pre-existing hotels.

It looks like they are well on their way, with reporting in March 2015 a total of 87 new hotels currently underway adding more than 27,000 rooms that will be completed by 2018.

There are a number of expansion projects in place to increase this capacity by a further 23,800 units as well.

Hiring for positions within the hotels can be expected in the months leading up to its opening and as mentioned earlier, this can be expected to be around 2018. 


Such a huge event will see the influx of a significant amount of tourists and spectators coming to the region, providing an opportunity for Qatar tourism to make a huge impact.

Hamad international Airport

One of those places requiring an upgrade was the airport in Qatar. The Hamad International Airport, has seen the first of two upgrades completed with the second phase of completion expected to be finished in 2018. Once concluded, it is anticipated to be double its current capacity and handle up to 50 million passengers per year.

Bechtel was awarded the contract for the development of the airport, which includes the design, construction management and project management of the facilities. Any request to work on this project should be made there.

Doha Subway & Rail System

50% of the tunnelling has said to be completed on the new Doha Subway system according to Qatar Rail’s managing director, Abdulla Abdulaziz Al Subaie.

Construction is anticipated to last right through to 2019 where they hope to have the entire system open to the public, including four lines and a total of 37 stations.

Other transport projects, the Lusail Light Rail Transit Network and other long distance rail networks are in the pipeline, but are uncertain as to the start and completion date. This will remain uncertain until a higher concentration of residents and workers move in according to Doha news.

Couple arriving in a hotelDoha Expressway

As well as public transport system, an upgrade to Qatar’s transport links by road is currently underway, with a huge national freeway linking key cities and towns expecting to be completed by 2016.

The $8.1 billion project is expected to deliver over 900km of new roads to improve journey times and flow within and between major cities and towns according to construction week online.

Saudi Arabia

The largest factor driving growth in Saudi Arabia is the construction of new cities, with a huge number of retail shops and hotels to be included. In total, such cities are anticipated to create over 1,500,000 new jobs once completed with a large proportion of them needed within the retail, hotels and hospitalities sector.

Take a look at just some of the projects in place that will create numerous jobs in the hospitality industry: 

King Abdullah Economic City in Rabigh

Located off the Red Sea north of Jeddah across 168 million sq m the project is valued at $27 billion. Master developer is Emaar, The Economic City. It includes a port and logistics, financial centre, light industry, and services and will create an estimated one million jobs and two million people will live there.

The Knowledge Economic City in Madinah

This $7 billion project across 4.8million sq m, will create 20,000 new jobs and be home to around 200,000 people. It will include an education-entertainment Islamic theme park, shopping complex, hotels and public transport. The master developer is Quad International

Jazan Economic City

Focusing on Heavy Industry and Agribusiness in the south west of the Kingdom covering 100 million sq m. The $27 billion city will bring 500,000 new jobs and a population of 250,000. Two-thirds of the city will be industrial park and it will also provide a seaport.

Job Opportunities

As mentioned, with many jobs not expected to really spike for at least a year, there are still many jobs in demand in the region.

There were nearly 15,000 advertised vacancies for retail and hospitality workers across the entire region.

With the most popular positions at the time of publication ranging from waiters, waitresses, chefs, hotel management, services, bar managers, retail assistants, sales persons and top level management, the location with the most vacancies was United Arab Emirates, followed by Egypt, then Saudi Arabia and Qatar. 

There are certainly positions available in the coming term it is a matter of getting your CV in the right place.

If you would like assistance in finding such positions, then upload your CV below and be appointed your very own personal job hunt manager who will help ensure your CV gets under the nose of the right recruiters and headhunters who have vacancies they need to fill!

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