Hoteliers from the Middle East participated and won across a variety of award categories at the Smart Hotel Awards ceremony. It took place on the second day of 20th edition Hotel Technology Summit, held at the Park Hyatt Dubai in November. It was organised by business facilitation company Naseba, in partnership with Hospitality Financial & Technology Professionals (HFTP) the organiser of HITEC, the world’s largest hospitality technology show.
Over 150 hospitality professionals gathered to support and applaud for various smart hotel awards this year, where exceptional hotels were recognised for their achievements across four categories – best in-room automation system, best use of cloud service, best booking experience and best smart hotel.
Ameen Al Darawsheh, Director of Sales and Marketing at The Torch Doha took the award for best smart hotel, beating the competition from a shortlist of eight hotels, in the most popular category for 2016. The iconic hotel in Doha boasts 51 floors with rooms and suites featuring a custom in-room iPad based solution, mood lighting system in 12 different colors and interactive LED TVs. “We are delighted and truly honored about getting such great recognition and winning at the most popular category this year. Management sees this as achieving another milestone to keep up with our high standards. We look forward to a new year of great achievements.” said Sherif Sabry, General Manager at The Torch Doha.
Best in-room automation system was awarded to Emirates Palace Hotel situated in the heart of Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE. Meanwhile, the award for the best use of cloud service was taken away by TIME Oak Hotel & Suites for its first-class hospitality services using cloud computing for business and leisure guests. Corp Executive Hotel won the best booking experience award for its highly curated and frictionless online booking experience for travelers.
Runner ups include XVA Art Hotel (best use of cloud service), The Torch Doha (best in-room automation system), Royal Rose Hotel (best booking experience), Abidos Hotel Apartments Al Barsha (best smart hotel) and Marsa Malaz Kempinski, The Pearl – Doha (best smart hotel).
The awards were judged by an esteemed panel of industry leaders and experts, including Frank Wolfe, Chief Executive Officer of HFTP; Matthew Stephens, Vice President of eHotelier; Denis Sorin, President of Hotel Operations of Dur Hospitality; and Henri Roelings, Founder & CEO of Hsyndicate.org & HospitalityNET. After the awards ceremony, Frank Wolfe announced that the first edition of HITEC Dubai will be hosted in 2017. “HFTP is pleased to continue its successful alliance with Naseba, and we are confident that combining the experience and resources from two global organisations will result in a highly effective event that will be of tremendous value to industry professionals located in the Middle East as well as the hospitality technology industry at large. “said Wolfe.
The 20th Hotel Technology Summit was sponsored by Ateco, Nawatt, Xn protel systems, Akamai Technologies, Idiso, Al Maria, MCOM, Network International, Pagero and Infor.