Construction

Jumeirah CEO eyeing opportunities in Saudi Arabia’s megaprojects – and beyond

Jose Silva says a big presence in KSA is part of group’s strategy of going global

Jose Silva says a big presence in KSA is part of group’s strategy of going global

A top official at Jumeirah, the leading hospitality and leisure group, has said that the company is planning big developments in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s megaprojects – such as the $500 billion Neom metropolis and the Red Sea Development Project.

Speaking on the side-lines of the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos, Jose Silva, CEO of Jumeirah, said that a big presence in KSA would be part of the strategy of ‘going global’ that he has advanced in his first two years as head of the UAE-based hotels, leisure and restaurants business – which is owned by the government of Dubai.

“We must be in those locations, but I want to make sure we get the right ‘address.’ Jumeiah always wants to be among the top three sites on any location. If someone convinces me this is the right address, I will jump into it,” he said.

According to an Arab News report, Silva is believed to be in contact with Saudi Arabian tourism authorities and potential partners in the Kingdom for future development work. He also revealed that Jumeirah is keen to open hotels in Makkah and Madinah, which he called ‘preferred entry points’ in the Kingdom.

Work has already begun on two sites, he highlighted.

“It is very important for us to acquire the right assets and the right designers. Unless we control the architect, we will not do it. We have to be involved in the design process,” he added.

In 2019, Jumeirah bought the Capri Palace on the eponymous Italian island, and is also involved in a major expansion plan in Asia, with six new projects underway in China, Indonesia and Malaysia. Silva is also overseeing a $100 million renovation of the Carlton hotel in London’s Belgravia.

Expansion via luxury hotel properties in other European capitals is also being considered, the report said.

In Dubai, he has brought in world-class managers to restaurants in the group’s flagship properties in Madinat and Burj Al Arab, with a clutch of “celebrity chefs” in place in restaurants there, it added.

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