Over 80 international industry experts, including PwC, STR Global, TOPHOTELPROJECTS and Deloitte, are set to speak on mega trends and developments in the hospitality and leisure industry in the UAE and globally at the 3rd annual Vision Conference in Dubai this September.
“The UAE already rivals world-leading tourism and leisure destination, Orlando, in the scale of its transport links, hotels, F&B, and its central global location within 4 hours flight of 3 billion people, which is unrivalled,” says Philip Shepherd, Partner, PwC Middle East Hospitality & Leisure Leader, announced as a speaker on the ‘Mega Trends’ panel at the Vision Conference. “By 2021, the UAE will have developed the other key ‘enablers’ to become a world-class leisure and entertainment destination and world-leading competitor.”
“We forecast that by 2021 the addressable UAE leisure market will have increased by 70% on 2015 figures to 45 million people including 31 million international tourists, with residents, their relatives and friends, a further 14 million.
“While the UAE has many of the ‘enablers’ in place or planned, ultimate success will depend on co-ordination between the Emirates, hotels, transport providers and the various UAE-wide attractions set to launch. If successful, UAE attractions can achieve 18 million theme park visits alone by 2021, in comparison to Singapore’s 6.7 million and Hong Kong’s 15 million today.”
In the UAE alone, leisure mega-attractions in the planning, construction and pre-opening stages include Dubai Parks and Resorts (2016), Guggenheim Museum Abu Dhabi (2017) and Dream Island, Ras al Khaimah (2018).
Phil Taylor, MD of Team Leisure LLC, speaking on the topic of ‘Dubai theme parks: boom or bust?’, explores the massive undertaking of 10 major theme parks, two safari parks and three international museums being developed concurrently in the UAE at present.
“The UAE in particular is at an interesting point in its development as a global tourism and leisure destination,” says Phil. “Not content with what it has achieved already, it has set itself an even more ambitious vision for the future. The Vision Conference Dubai 2015 is an exciting opportunity for the leisure and hospitality industry to consider the vital role they play in delivering this vision and what lessons there are for the rest of the region.”
Daniel G. During, Principal and MD of Thomas Klein International, will discuss the necessity to develop and grow the mid-range sector at the Vision Conference. “My presentation will address the lack of budget resorts in the Emirates,” he says. “The growth of mid-market hotels is now essential to the success of the UAE’s tourism vision.
“With improved airport capacity and infrastructure, expanding airline networks with a focus on low-cost carriers, emerging source markets in Africa and Asia, and the addition of new family tourist attractions, there is huge demand for affordable options. Operators across the region are now looking at how they can do their part to attract new market segments, including younger families, millennials travelling in smaller budgets and younger travellers in general who will be drawn by the 2020 exhibition.”
Find out more and register to attend the Vision Conference Dubai 2015 for free here.