Domestic tourism saved Sharm El-Sheikh’s hotels from closure, increased occupancy to 75%: Aurora Hospitality Management regional manager

Daily News Egypt
3 Min Read
Ali Saudi, the regional operations manager for Aurora

Aurora Hospitality Management, which operates three hotels in Sharm El-Sheikh, is looking to expand its horizons by investing in two hotels in the North Coast and Ain Sokhna over the coming three years.

Ali Saudi, the regional operations manager for Aurora, told Daily News Egypt that the company plans to expand its operations in the North Coast and Ain Sokhna to attract more domestic tourism. He expects that the North Coast will start to compete with the likes of Sharm El-Sheikh and Hurghada in terms of occupancy and interest.

Aurora operates three hotels in the Nabq Bay and Montaza areas in Sharm El-Sheikh. The company reopened two hotels in May after they had been closed for a year. Both hotels include 445 rooms and four Italian restaurants. Aurora Oriental Resort five-stars hotel has 380 rooms, in addition to three restaurants and 24 shops.

The company also runs a hotel in Marsa Alam, which has 190 rooms, as well as a main restaurant and a Lebanese restaurant.

He noted that the increase in the price of the US dollar price has led to an increase in the hotel’s operating expenditures by more than 25%. Aurora’s revenues reached EGP 25m in 2015, and its total profits reached 12% of that amount.

On the other hand, the company has endured losses throughout the first six months of 2016, which amount to EGP 13m.

Saudi claimed that domestic tourism has saved Sharm El-Sheikh hotels from being shut down and increased hotels’ occupancy rates. However, occupancy rates ranged between just 5%-8% from November 2015 to July 2016.

The countries with the highest number of visitors in Aurora-run hotels came from Russia and England, whereas the most prevalent number of tourists who visited from Arab countries came from Algeria, Morocco, Iraq, and Lebanon.

Saudi added that the Ministry of Tourism has been keen on supporting hotels through delaying loan payments, insurance, and electricity bills owed by several hotels, explaining that these hotels were also careful to rationalise consumption of energy sources, in order to reduce operational costs.

About 60 hotels in Sharm El-Sheikh, affected by the decline in tourism numbers, have shut down between November 2015 and July 2016.

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