By Faiek El Saadani, General Manager, LAPITA Dubai Parks and Resorts, Autograph Collection

In 2023, Dubai once again topped the Middle East cities in hotel performance and welcomed 17.15 million overnight visitors. As of last year, there are 820 hospitality establishments in Dubai alone, and this number is only set to increase. With competition intensifying, there’s an increased need to understand each of our guests to create unique and memorable experiences.

To stay ahead, adopting a diversified segmentation approach is crucial for long term success. It’s crucial to cater to the distinct needs of diverse customer segments, resulting in an increase in bookings and interest. As hoteliers, the ability to adapt and provide tailored experiences is essential for attracting and retaining customers.

Providing a place to stay is no longer enough. Our guests expect more from hotels and want an experience that is not just unique, exclusive but also memorable. Last year, we refreshed our approach to leisure bookings through the launch of our home-grown concept Lu’WOW Weekenders. This Polynesian style weekend redefines the essence of family staycations, attracting both UAE residents and international tourists alike. With themed brunches, live entertainment, and interactive games, Lapita sees high levels of occupancy and interest, solidifying our position as a leisure destination.

Eco-tourism is also on the rise with guests choosing more eco-friendly hotels. We’ve launched several impactful initiativeswithout compromising on luxury. From implementing advanced hydroponic farming systems for onsite organic produce cultivation to innovative water bottling and recycling programs, we want to encourage our guests take part in the hydroponic farming activities, and. As part of this dedication, Lapita holds the prestigious Green Key Certification, which guides every decision made across operations, further validating our eco-friendly practices.

Another key segment in the UAE is the Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions (MICE) industry which is set for continued growth with an expected growth of 8.5 percent during 2023-2030 to $9.12 billion by 2030, making significant contributions to the economy. With increasing business events, exhibitions, and conferences in the country, hotels can benefit from tapping into this niche market and drawing business travellers and event planners worldwide, allowing consistent year-round bookings and sustainable revenue growth.

At Lapita, one of the driving forces behind our success is our strategic focus on corporate customers and wedding bookings. We experienced a 40% increase in corporate, government and business customer inquiries. With our location between Dubai and Abu Dhabi, top-notch facilities, and expansive outdoor spaces, Lapita has become the preferred choice for company events, hosting over 150 unique conferences and meetings. From hospitality to technology and diplomatic missions, our flexibility, tailored rates, customizable experiences and location ensure competitiveness in a diverse market.

Reflecting on Lapita’s success in 2023, the resort is a unique property renowned for its world-class facilities, Polynesian culture, luxury and unparalleled guest experience. It was a truly standout year for the team with a strong demand from a diverse range of customer segments helping cement our position as one of the UAE’s most in-demand multi-purpose resort destinations. Looking ahead, we need to continuously evolve, innovate and adapt to meet the ever-changing demands for our guests.