Visitors are now discovering Dhofar in Oman, cooled by the East’s monsoon rains, bringing a carpet of lush greenery to the region as wadis and waterfalls begin to flow.
Known as ‘Khareef’, this phenomenon typically lasts from July until September. With the lifting of Covid-19 restrictions on international travel and the launch of the advanced digital VisitOman.om platform to serve the regional and international B2B travel and tourism sector, Oman is poised to welcome visitors back in droves.
With tourism identified as a critical sector in the Oman Vision 2040, it continues to have a ripple effect on the growth of infrastructure, employment, service industries and opportunities for local suppliers to expand into new markets. In recent years, Oman has enjoyed steady growth in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) from the tourism industry. It is now looking to leverage its unique tourism offering to attract further investment.
Historically, Salalah has been known as the ‘Land of Frankincense’ and is home to two UNESCO World Heritage sites, the ruins of Al Baleed Port and Khor Ruri, which still bear the signs of trade during ancient times. Modern-day Dhofar is more famous for its white sandy beaches and the selection of four- and five-star beachfront hotels in Integrated Tourism Complexes (ITC), a growing trend in Oman’s tourist industry.
Hawana Salalah, the largest ITC in the country, is situated in Dhofar. Built and operated by an internationally acclaimed builder of fully-integrated towns, Muriya, a joint venture between Oman Tourism Development Company (OMRAN) and Orascom Development Holding (ODH), Hawana Salalah currently features 1,200 hotel rooms spread across luxurious four- and five-star beachfront hotels.
This is in addition to a marina surrounded by cafes, shops and restaurants, Oman’s first aqua park, freehold residential properties available to own by all nationalities, and hotels ready to welcome visitors for the Khareef season. In collaboration with Muriya, local and international tour operators have added year-round flights to Salalah Airport from France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Slovakia and the Czech Republic as part of package holidays. With tourism picking up pace, in the first six months of 2022 alone, Hawana Salalah welcomed 30,532 visitors.
Mohamed Abdelaziz, Acting Chief Executive Officer of Muriya, said: “As part of our pledge to Oman, we have dedicated our strategy to develop Hawana Salalah, which aims to unlock the potential of Dhofar and provide the catalyst for further investment in the Governorate while unlocking new opportunities in investment and tourism promotion. Hawana Salalah is Muriya’s flagship destination and has introduced a platform for job creation, local and international investment, and tourism promotion.”
With the Khareef in full swing and international tourists flocking to enjoy the greenery and serenity associated with the season, Salalah and the Governorate of Dhofar continue to welcome visitors to enjoy the unique landscape and pleasant landscape climate. This destination offers a deep insight into Oman’s past and present and its future as a thriving international tourist destination.
Source: TradeArabia News Service