(MENAFN Press) Souq Waqif Boutique Hotels (SWBH), Doha's unique collection of cultured luxury designer hotels, represented Qatar in the world-leading International Luxury Travel Market (ILTM), which is held annually in Cannes, France.
This year for the first time SWBH had sole representation for Qatar, following its attendance at the same event last year along with Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA). The SWBH delegation at the four-day event from 2-5 December, was headed by Patrick Heuze, CEO of Al Rayyan Hospitality, which manages SWBH, Abdo Kayali, Group Director of Sales and Marketing and Olga Krotova, Sales Manager . SWBH attended to raise awareness of Qatar's heritage and the upscale luxury hospitality offered by its unique and stylish designer collection to the world's leading five-star travel buyers.
ILTM is the leading 'by invitation only' event for the global luxury travel community, held annually at The Palais des Festivals et des Congrs, Cannes and features the most exclusive five-star hospitality and tourism destinations from around the world. The event provides the opportunity to meet face-to-face with international travel buyers of the highest caliber and to showcase to international industry experts the five-star quality of Qatar's tourism offering, epitomized by the refined Souq Waqif Boutique Hotels.
The collection of eight exclusive boutique hotels has also worked in collaboration with Qatar Airways to position Doha as an exclusive stopover destination for long-haul travelers looking to experience five-star, world-class hospitality in authentically designed hotels that offer the latest in contemporary style with the warmth and welcome of Arabic hospitality. Many of the hotels were rebuilt in exquisite designs from former buildings in heart of the vibrant Souq Waqif, the only surviving authentic Souq in the Gulf. Guests can wander through the captivating alleyways of stalls on their doorstep, and barter with stall holders selling stunning Arabic jewelry, beautiful silks, perfumes, spices, local handicrafts and Bedouin weaving as well as antiques and local paintings, before returning to the haven of their hotel.
Abdo Kayali, Group Director of Sales and Marketing at Souq Waqif Boutiqe Hotels, said: "It has been a wonderful opportunity to showcase the rich culture, heritage and identity of Qatar and encapsulated in the designs of Souq Waqif Boutique Hotels, to the world's most discerning travel and tourism experts. We are particularly honored to have been chosen as Qatar's ambassador for its world-class, exclusive hospitality and to have had the chance to raise our profile internationally as a cultured collection of luxury designer hotels blending traditional Arabic hospitality with contemporary chic.
"The experts we have spoken to were excited at the prospect of their clients using our hotels in the heart of Doha's bustling Souq market for a premium stopover and to experience Qatar's impressive heritage and culture in such select surroundings."
Mr Kayali added that exhibiting at ILTM raised the profile of Qatar and SWBH particularly to the French market, one of the key tourism markets internationally.