Dhofar gearing up to welcome Khareef tourists

The Ministry of Tourism (MoT) is preparing for Khareef tourism season in Dhofar. Marhoon bin Said al Ameri, Director-General of Tourism in the governorate, said in an interview with Oman News Agency (ONA) that the Directorate has recently held a meeting with officials of hotels to discuss its readiness for the tourist season which starts from June 21 to September 21 every year. He said the Ministry of Tourism provides tourist information centres in Salalah airport, Salalah Gardens Mall and Salalah Tourism Centre.
He said MoT participated in the Arab Travel Market in Dubai from April 24 to April 27 for the promotion of tourism in the Sultanate focusing on the Khareef season.
He pointed out that Al Baleed tourist resort, Anantara, which is located in Al Baleed Archaeological Park listed in Unesco World Heritage Sites, is a new addition this season.
Al Ameri said it is the first luxury villa resort in Salalah and contains 96 villas. There are swimming pools in 88 villas, in addition to 40 hotel rooms including 30 rooms with sea view, as well as various halls and restaurants.
He said that one of the most important investment projects currently under way is the resort of Shatha Salalah that includes a hotel, chalets and restaurants. The 5-star resort contains 450 rooms. Other projects are the resorts at Al Soudah Island, in the Wilayat of Shaleem and Al Halaniyat Islands, and Alila Resort in the Wilayat of Mirbat.
The official said that 80 per cent of the Salalah Mall project, a 230-acre tourist project and hotel suites, has been completed and 60 per cent of the Damar Resort project, a three-star environmental project with 80 hotel rooms, has been completed.
He said that there are some private tourism projects, which are in their final stages, such as the Millennium Resort in Al Saadah area, a 4-star tourist resort, containing 404 hotel rooms. The Puntland Resort in Awqad is also 4-star with 110 hotel rooms.
Al Ameri said the MoT is working in cooperation with the Public Authority for Civil Defence and Ambulance and the specialised companies to conduct a mock drill in Al Mughsail and Al Dahareez Beach during Khareef season to educate tourists about the dangers of swimming.
He added that the ministry has operated 30 temporary mobile toilets in the tourist sites, besides 20 self-cleaning toilets in a number of selected sites in Salalah.
He confirmed that the Directorate-General of Tourism in the Governorate of Dhofar is following upon the projects that have been completed, such as the walkway in Al Dahareez Beach, Ateen Park, Ateen Walk, and maintenance projects of Springs of Darbat, Sahlnout, Garziz and Al Nawafir Natural Sites in Al Mughsail area. — ONA