Jumeirah began in Dubai in the ’90s, stunning the world with bombastic hotels like the Burj Al Arab. Today, the luxe operator wants to bring some of that Dubai shine to other key global markets.
Dubai’s homegrown hotel group, Jumeirah is now on a fast-track journey to become a global leader in luxury. The Burj Al Arab operator wants to double its footprint by the end of the decade, meaning more than 50 hotels.
To achieve this, the company is looking more and more beyond the Emirates, eyeing key markets in Europe, the Americas, and Asia.
Chief commercial officer Alex Lee said at the Skift Global Forum East 2023: “We’re at a pivotal moment to reflect on everything we’ve achieved. We have an opportunity from becoming a regional powerhouse in luxury to a global brand.”
This new focus is Jumeirah’s “Mission 2030” and is spearheaded by its new CEO, Katerina Giannouka.
“Mission 2030 is the beginning of where we want to go. Our headline is to double in size over that period. Americas are absolutely on the horizon, but the focus for now is Europe,” said Lee.
Jumeirah as a hospitality brand was born in 1997 with the opening of Jumeirah Beach Hotel and became part of Dubai Holding in 2004, Dubai’s Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum‘s own holding company. Since Giannouka took charge last year, Jumeirah has announced a project in Geneva, and Dubai Holding has bought the Westin in Paris, which many think will become a Jumeirah one day.
While growing overseas, Lee stressed that Jumeirah cannot lose sight of its original commitment to championing Arabian hospitality.
Jumeirah and Arabian Hospitality
Lee said: “We’re doing a huge amount of work on our brand right now, including the development of our brand composition. Some of that starts with looking at our heritage and the heritage of being born in Dubai. We use that as a foundational pillar to take us around the world.”
“We’re starting at a phenomenally high base. We want to live up to that promise in all of our locations.”
To do this, Lee told Skift that Jumeirah is looking at bringing in local and Dubai-based talent into its global hotels. He said: “The human element of hospitality is a bridge between the Arabian hospitality story and international expansion.”