The recently-held IAAF World Athletics Championships 2019 has positioned Qatar’s hospitality industry on the world map, Sheraton Grand Doha Resort & Convention Hotel general manager Belal al-Kadry told Gulf Times. With a large number of delegates from various countries attending, the prestigious sports competition positively impacted the hotel’s performance and occupancy around the city.
“The influence of the World Athletics Championships enabled Sheraton Grand Doha (official hotel) to achieve an occupancy average of 100% over the duration of the event,” al-Kadry noted. The Championships was held between September 27 and October 6, welcoming around 2,000 athletes from more than 200 countries competing in 49 sports disciplines.
Al-Kadry observed that such events also provide a huge opportunity for many hotels to promote Qatar as favourite tourism destination in the region, as well as contribute in making them successful. He said hotels can deliver and extend a curated product and service to all guests, enabling memorable experience “that befits the culture of the city and the expectations of the event.”
“Initiatives such as recognition of milestones, anniversaries and birthdays are key contributors to impressing guests and leaving with them with a sense of appreciation and admiration to the country and the hotel,” al-Kadry added. It is learnt that Qatar’s hospitality and retail sectors got a further boost during the Championship, with a surge in hotel and restaurant bookings and revenues for three weeks.
Al-Kadry said the World Athletics Championship has been a great platform for Doha to be part of the world sporting stage, where millions of people witnessed Qatar’s capability to host such complex events. This also opened the pathway to future (major) competitions such as the 2022 FIFA World Cup, he said. Qatar will again welcome around 2,000 athletes and accompanying representatives from various countries for the ANOC World Beach Games Qatar 2019, which will take place from October 12 to 16 in Doha.
“The door is now open to the world to access Qatar for all its offerings and its abilities to attract other major events, such as conventions, congresses, conferences and many more,” the general manager added.