RIYADH: Elaf Group, one of the leading hospitality players in the region, is now set to focus on expanding its presence with the opening of its first property under the newly launched hotel brand Joudyan in Riyadh later this week.
This will be Elaf Group’s first hotel in Riyadh and the opening of Joudyan in the capital will be followed up with other cities outside of Riyadh.
In an exclusive interview with Arab News on the sidelines of the World Travel & Tourism Council Global Summit in Riyadh, Ahmed Al-Azzouni, director of marketing and public relations, Elaf Group, said they intend to expand in the Eastern Province and the north and south as well.
“Joudyan will be the focus of Elaf Group’s expansion plan in the Kingdom,” he said.
Elaf Group which offers a mix of five- and four-star hotels, promises to offer a “unique experience” of the local feel of the Kingdom to the visitors.
Al-Azzouni added: “The hotel in Jeddah will be in the Red Sea Mall. We’re currently renovating the property and it will be reopened as Joudyan brand.”
He said they are confident that Joudyan will soon carve a niche for itself in the hospitality industry.
"The new brand would have multiple locations across the Kingdom,” informed Al-Azzouni. “The official opening of the first Joudyan brand would be in Riyadh this week. It will soon be followed by the opening of the second hotel in Jeddah during the second half of 2023.”
Talking about the new brand name, Al-Azzouni explained that when you dissect the word Joudyan, joud is from the Arabic word which means alkaram or generosity. “We made sure that we created a new name that reflects that (generosity),” Al-Azzouni explained.
“Generosity is part of the Saudi culture. And that’s what we intend to make sure our guests feel about us when they come visit us. We will also make sure that that is our core brand essence and how we do business,” he continued.
As for Elaf hotels, Al-Azzouni informed they will be concentrated in Makkah and Madinah due to the Elaf name having its roots in the holy cities.
The company is also planning to expand across the Gulf Cooperation Council and the Middle East regions while setting its eyes on the European market.
“We are open to any kind of ventures and investment opportunities that is mutually beneficial to all parties,” Al-Azzouni said talking about the company’s future plans.
Going on to discuss the overall outlook of the hospitality industry, Al-Azzouni said things were catching up with 2019. “We have seen positive numbers and things are going back to where we were in 2019,” he informed. “We’re almost there and we can feel it in different sectors including hospitality and travel and tourism. We see a positive outlook for 2023 and beyond.”
Not surprisingly then that the group is currently working on the completion of extensive renovation and upgrading efforts in all its hotels in order to keep pace with the rapid growth in the tourism and hospitality sectors.