Muscat: Several mega tourism projects, monitored by the Implementation Support and Follow-up Unit (ISFU), have progressed well in 2019 on the level of finalizing and approving the master plans and developing agreements.
According to ISFU annual report said, “While each of the developments is progressing at its own pace, all of them have required follow-up and fast-tracking of approvals. While the developers experienced no major challenges, there were however some delays due to changing and reprioritizing some of the projects’ components.”
The initiative studied a number of factors, challenges, and conditions affecting the current progress
of tourism projects that include fiscal and non-fiscal incentives. ISFU and the Ministry of Tourism are working closely with stakeholders including the Ministry of Finance, Haya Water, Ministry of Health, Muscat Municipality, and Central Bank of Oman (CBO) to launch a list of new incentives that will help attract investments to the sector.
A list of additional projects, Hay al Sharq, Qurayyat Integrated Complex, Al Nakheel ITC, Ras Al
Hadd Resort and Naseem al Sabah were included in the list in 2019 as their impact on creating jobs and boosting the economy are significant.
Al Mouj Project is the first Integrated Tourism Complex (ITC) project in the country and saw a total investment value of RO384 million. It is located in Muscat and consists of five hotels with a total 1,600 rooms capacity; 100 hotel apartments; 6,000 housing units; 18-hole golf course, golf club, and recreational facilities; a commercial center and walkway; and a marina with berths for 400 boats.
Hayy al Sharq Project is the first leisure and entertainment destination in the country. Located in
Al Sawadi, Barka, the project saw a total investment value of RO 300 million. Hay al Sharq Project consists of three hotels with a total of 1682 key rooms; 625 residential units; a theme park and wildlife attraction; a water park; edutainment center; equestrian center, retail and F&B outlets.
Naseem al Sabah Project is an upcoming ITC development, the 400,000-square-meter project will be located near Al Mouj Project. With an investment worth of RO300 Million, it will consist of two hotels with a total capacity of 600 rooms; 696 housing units; and a marina with berths for 75 boats and a sales gallery.
Qurayyat Resort ITC will be located in Wilayat Qurayyat over an area of 1,282,300 sqm. The project will be developed in three phases, and it sees a total investment value of RO360 million.
Once complete, Qurayyat Resort ITC will consist of three hotels with a total capacity of 750 key rooms; 4,000 residential units; a golf course, a waterpark, and a boulevard walkway.
Al Nakheel ITC This mixed-use ITC will be developed on the Abu Nakheel coastline in Al Rumais, Barka. With a total area of 500,000 sqm, the development is set to include three hotels with a total of 485 key rooms; 185 hotel apartments; 1,436 residential units; an artificial lagoon and water park; traditional souq; and an international school. The total investment value of the project is RO246 million.
Ras al Hadd eco-themed resort will be located in Ras Al Hadd, near Sur, over an area of 1,971,823 sqm. Once complete, Ras Al Hadd Resort will consist of 3 hotels with a total of 700 key rooms; 488
residential units; and a commercial center, heritage village, and marina. It will also include a wildlife
park and marine park. The total investment value of the project is RO200 million.
Al Mouj Project: Several meetings were conducted to discuss the pending approval of the development control plan. In addition, ISFU presented to the ministerial committee a full impact analysis of the traffic junction at the Wave Roundabout. As a result, both Muscat Municipality and Al Mouj Muscat are currently collaborating to resolve the issue related to the road infrastructure.
Hayy Al Sharq Project: The designs for the three-Star and four-Star hotels have been approved by MoT. The developer has also procured the construction tender and received No Objection Certificates (NOCs) from the relevant stakeholders. A challenge faced by this project was a delay in the waterpark and edutainment designs, due to internal negotiations with the developer.
Naseem Al Sabah Project: The building permits for the sales gallery and mock-up villas have been approved by Muscat Municipality.
Qurayyat Resort ITC submitted the masterplan to both Ministry of Housing (MoH) and Muscat Municipality on behalf of the developer. ISFU supported the process by facilitating several meetings between the project developers and the Directorate General of Investor Services at MoT, to expedite obtaining the approval of phase one 4-star hotel designs.
Al Nakheel ITC: The first phase of crystal lagoon and infrastructure designs have been completed, and works of leveling and excavation have commenced.
Ras al Hadd Resort: The developer has tendered the hotel and staff accommodation packages for construction.
The focus of the authorities in 2020 will be to continue facilitating the design and construction phases of the current mega projects and add 2 mega projects, Madinat Al Irfan and Yeti.