KSA top Middle East expansion location: Ascott

Updated 01 May 2019

KSA top Middle East expansion location: Ascott

The Ascott Limited (Ascott) has announced its Middle East, Africa and Turkey expansion plans, revealing that Saudi Arabia is a top expansion location in the region over the next two years.

Ascott currently has five operating serviced residence properties in the Kingdom, with the next set to open this year.

Four new Ascott properties are in the Saudi pipeline for 2020: Somerset Downtown Al-Khobar, Ascott Villas Riyadh, Somerset Corniche Jeddah and Citadines Abha. The recently announced Citadines Al-Aziziyah Al-Khobar signing, slated for Q4 2021, takes Ascott’s total footprint to 12 properties in the region. 

“We’re in the midst of a very exciting period of growth in Saudi Arabia,” said Vincent Miccolis, Ascott’s regional GM for Middle East, Africa and Turkey. “In the four years since we launched our first property in Saudi Arabia, Ascott Tahlia Jeddah, we’ve established a market-leading presence by unveiling a range of highly successful serviced residences, including Ascott Sari Jeddah, Citadines Al-Salamah Jeddah, Ascott Rafal Olaya Riyadh and Spectrums Residence Jeddah. Each property follows international operating standards and offers short- and long-term residents the perfect mix of luxury with contemporary design and supporting amenities.” 

As the Kingdom diversifies its economy in line with the Saudi Vision 2030, Miccolis said they are seeing strong demand for Ascott’s serviced residences driven by a wide demographic of travelers from across the business and leisure sectors. 


Bupa Arabia supports the underprivileged & orphans

Updated 22 min 28 sec ago

Bupa Arabia supports the underprivileged & orphans

Bupa Arabia for Cooperative Insurance has partnered with the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development to distribute 3,000 food baskets among underprivileged families, which are registered with the ministry’s Social Welfare and Family Welfare Agency. The initiative comes in line with the spirit of Ramadan, a month of giving, and in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

This year, orphans who are covered under Bupa Arabia’s free health insurance program will help in preparing and distributing the baskets to inculcate a sense of giving among them.

Dr. Abdullah Al-Wahaibi, undersecretary at the Social Welfare and Family Welfare Agency, hailed Bupa Arabia’s move to involve orphans in preparing and distributing baskets under the supervision of the agency, saying: “This is a caring gesture from Bupa Arabia, and it promotes a sense of belonging among orphans while cultivating the principles of giving, communication and closeness between them and society.”

He added that the initiative supports what the company has been offering orphans for years. More than 2,600 orphans, living in more than 47 homes across the Kingdom, benefit from Bupa Arabia’s free health insurance program. The program includes divorced orphans and widows who live with their children in social care homes.

Loay Hisham Nazer, chairman of Bupa Arabia, said: “The orphans will be joining hands to assemble and distribute baskets to the families in an attempt to get a sense of the pride of giving during the holy month. We’ve also extended this to our employees, who collectively prepared 411 food baskets. We hope that we make a real and positive impact through this initiative.”

Bupa Arabia was the first company to offer free health insurance for residents of “Dar Al-Rafeef” in 2011. Three years later, in 2014, the program expanded to cover all orphans residing in shelters supervised by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development.

“We believe that in order to play a proactive role in society, we need to provide more than just health insurance; we should aim to become the health care partner for every orphan in Saudi Arabia. Therefore, we would like them to know that we are always by their side,” Nazer said, adding that the orphans receive special treatment and the same services that are given to some VIP clients.

The free health insurance program offers a range of quality services, including a designated hotline to receive calls and provide immediate assistance. Bupa Arabia also developed an integrated program that enables doctors to visit beneficiaries periodically for checkups, and regularly organizes health education workshops to raise awareness. The program is approved by the Cooperative Health Insurance Council and covers all treatments, including plastic surgery, dermatology, and even cases that are not covered by regular health insurance.