January 25, 2023 – Atlantis The Royal
If Atlantis The Royal signifies the next chapter of Dubai hospitality, a new classification would recognise the city’s achievements
It was a dumbfounded journalist who said that Burj Al Arab Jumeirah was a seven-star hotel when it opened, or so the story goes.
More than two decades on, writers, VIPs, celebrities and dignitaries have again been dazzled by a new Dubai hotel, this time by Atlantis The Royal.
And again, here is a dumbfounded journalist writing that Dubai has opened a hotel far beyond the realms of five-star hospitality. Kerzner International’s Atlantis The Royal is the city’s crowning jewel of modern hospitality.
That is why I’m saying it is time to officially introduce a six-star rating and give it to Atlantis The Royal.
Atlantis The Royal has no equal
Many hotels are luxurious, other hotels have plenty of celebrity-stamped restaurants, lots are frequented by socialites and rockstars, but none have done so on the scale of Atlantis The Royal’s Grand Reveal.
Dubbed the world’s largest ultra-luxury resort, Atlantis The Royal is a self-proclaimed “juggernaut” of the global hotel sector. It has 795 rooms, 90 pools, eight celebrity restaurants and two kilometres of private beach.
A celebrity hotspot
One distinguishing factor between the top hotels of Dubai and the rest of the world is often heritage, history and prestige. Opened in 1907, The Plaza in Manhattan is legendary, frequently appearing in film and pop culture. The property is an icon of New York and has welcomed the most famous people in the world each decade it has been open.
Atlantis The Royal has pretty much managed the same, in a single weekend. During last weekend’s Grand Reveal Party. It welcomed HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, Beyoncé, Kendall Jenner and many more.
A key part of tourism
Atlantis The Royal’s opening came days after the announcement of Dubai’s new $8.7 trillion economic plan. It also comes in the wake of the UAE Tourism Strategy 2031, which eyes 40 million annual hotel guests.
The Strategy eyes an annual increase of AED27 billion ($7 million), attracting new investments of AED100 billion ($27 billion) to the tourism sector in the country.
This hotel will play a vital role in the country’s ongoing tourism efforts, along with its hopes to boost the national economy.
A six-star classification would propel the hotel into the international conversation again, and help Dubai officials reinforce the emirate’s place as a superpower in luxury and hospitality.
A class of its own
At the moment, hotels do not go above five stars, in Dubai or anywhere else. But that doesn’t mean the city can’t create a six-star classification should it want to. For example, at the end of 2021, Dubai Tourism introduced a new star rating system for wellness resorts. Classifications are also given out to define boutique hotels.
Not only would making Atlantis The Royal a six-star hotel be a recognition of its impact on global tourism, but it would also showcase to the world the pioneering efforts of Dubai in leading the way to redefining what luxury looks like for the next decade.
Moreover, if Dubai Tourism were to pen official guidelines on how to become a six-star hotel, it would push the wider industry to strive for the same. There are around a dozen Dubai hotels I can think of that would revel at the chance to be put into the new classification (and could realistically do it), able to command higher rates because of it and attract deep-pocketed curious tourists from around the world.
As the resort’s marketing and PR VP Hanan Eissa put it: “This is the place you’ll get everything you ever wanted and everything you didn’t know you wanted. Everything you’ll ever dream about is here, in one place.”
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