x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 January 2018

Hilton plans 9,000 new staff with six Saudi hotels

Hilton announces plans to open six hotels in Makkah as part of the Jabal Omar development.

Hilton announces plans to open six hotels in Makkah as part of the Jabal Omar development. AP Photo/Hassan Ammar
Hilton announces plans to open six hotels in Makkah as part of the Jabal Omar development. AP Photo/Hassan Ammar

Hilton Worldwide has signed an agreement to manage six new hotels as part of a multibillion dollar development in Makkah in Saudi Arabia, the management company announced on Wednesday.

The hotels are part of the long-delayed Jabal Omar development, which is located overlooking the Grand Mosque and is designed to accommodate the growing numbers of pilgrims travelling to The Kingdom.

Hilton plans to take on 9,000 new staff over the next three to four years as it expands in the country.

"We've got a huge task ahead of us to recruit the number of people required for our upcoming hotels in the Kingdom," said Rudi Jagersbacher, Hilton Worldwide's area president, Middle East and Africa.

To meet legal requirements in the country, Hilton said "a significant number of these team members will be Saudi nationals".

To achieve this, Hilton has partnered with the Prince Sultan College for Tourism and Business to develop its own hospitality curriculum and qualification.

These latest signings mean the operator is to triple its presence in Saudi Arabia. Hilton already has six properties open in the Gulf country and the latest announcement brings the number of hotels it has planned to a total of 12.

The six hotels in Makkah are scheduled to open in 2014 under a range of the company's brands including Conrad, Hilton, and DoubleTree.

Marriott and Hyatt also plan to manage three hotels each as part of the development, the companies announced.