Jumeirah Opens In Mumbai; Rumours Of Delhi Opening

Hospitality company Jumeirah has signed an agreement to operate in Mumbai, India; CEO tells Gulf Business that Delhi may be next.



A rendering of the proposed building which will house the Jumeirah hotel in Mumbai.

Jumeirah Group, the global hospitality company and a member of Dubai Holding, has signed a management agreement to operate a luxury hotel in central Mumbai, India.

The hotel is part of a major new development in the Lower Parel district of the city and is expected to open in 2017.

When complete the property will consist of 470 rooms, suites and serviced apartments, a wide range of restaurants and bars, conference, wedding, banqueting and meeting facilities and a Talise spa.

Jumeirah Group currently operates 20 luxury hotels and serviced apartments. A further 15 hotels are now under development.

President and group CEO of Jumeirah Group, Gerald Lawless, said: “The demand for five-star hotels in the Indian market has been robust and we are delighted to have initiated the first phase of our expansion into India with this landmark project in Mumbai.”

In June Lawless told Gulf Business that Jumeirah was in talks to open up hotels in two major Indian cities.

“We have some very specific discussions going on in Mumbai and Delhi,” Lawless said without disclosing further details.

The group, which manages properties in London, New York, Shanghai and Rome, will also focus on growth in the Middle East and Asia, he said.

“Asia should come through the economic situation that we are now facing in good shape. We see a lot of demand in emerging countries like Indonesia, Philippines and all of Southeast Asia. There’s also plenty to do in countries like China and Pakistan,” said Lawless.

Within the GCC region, Jumeirah is in active discussions with five cities in Saudi Arabia – Jeddah, Riyadh, Al Khobar, Mekkah and Madina.

When asked about Jumeirah’s earlier target to operate 60 hotels by the end of 2012, Lawless clarified that the figure included hotels with management contracts, those under construction and hotels under operation.

“Will we be at 60 by the end of the year? Probably not. We hadn’t anticipated when we made these pronouncements [in 2008] that we were going to go through the recession in 2009 and 2010,” he said.

“In that respect I am very pleased with what we have achieved. It’s a moving target because sometimes we have hotel management agreements signed up and then the investor will say for whatever reason – ‘well I am not going ahead’- so that one drops off, but another one comes on.

“So currently we are running at about 51 hotels under development or in operation in total,” he added.