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Starwood is to re-enter the Iraq hotel market for the first time in 20 years with a Sheraton property in Dohuk.
The US-based hotel firm has announced plans to open the 202-room Sheraton Dohuk in early 2014. It will be the first internationally-branded hotel in the city which is in the Kurdistan Autonomous Region of northern Iraq close to the border with Turkey.
This property will be followed by three more Starwood hotels - Sheraton Erbil, Aloft Erbil and Four Points by Sheraton Erbil – which are all due to open in the Kurdistan regional capital in 2015.
Michael Wale (pictured), president of Starwood for Europe, Africa and Middle East, said: “We are proud to be part of the development of this important region in Iraq as we bring a new level of hospitality to the local community and to international travellers.”
The move is part of Starwood’s plan to expand within the Middle East and the company already has more than 30 hotels due to open in the region over the next few years.
Bart Carnahan, Starwood’s senior vice president for acquisitions and development, EMEA, added: “Sheraton continues to be a first mover into many new markets around the world, and remains a popular choice for owners and developers in both primary and secondary markets
“As part of our global growth strategy, we seek new frontiers for our brands, and the signing of Sheraton Dohuk Hotel marks a significant milestone as we look for the right expansion opportunities in Iraq and throughout the Middle East.”