The Hotel Show 2012, which has drawn on to a single platform 420 hospitality supplier companies from across the region, opened on Tuesday at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre. Shaikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman of Dubai Airports, Chairman of Emirates Group and CEO of Emirates airline, inaugurated the show that has attracted industry professionals from more than 94 countries throughout the Middle East, the Levant and North Africa region. As the gateway to the Middle East and North Africa region, and the most direct route to the fast-growing hospitality sector in these markets, the Dubai show continues to grow year-on-year, said Frederique Maurell, event director for The Hotel Show. The hospitality sector in the UAE has been witnessing a robust growth regardless of the global economic slowdown. Statistics show that the UAE hotels hosted over 14 million guests as guestnights rose by 15 per cent annually to hit 40 million. The hotel occupancy rate went up to 70 per cent boosting revenues to Dh22 billion. European guests topped the list of hotel guests followed by Asians, citizens of the GCC member countries while North Americans came in the fourth place. The three-day event features a record number of exhibitors participating in the Green Initiative that highlights sustainable, energy efficient and eco-friendly solutions from all sectors of the industry. These include companies as diverse as ABB, Pedro Y Lopez, Axminster Carpets, King Koil, Serta, Renarte, ADA Cosmetics International GmbH, Systemfiltration, Interel, Technogym, Hypnos and Headline Technology Sponsor, Etisalat. The international telecommunications provider will highlight its pioneering eHospitality services during the show. Sustainable products and services range from soft furnishings to in-room cosmetics, water filtration systems and lighting solutions. “For the hospitality industry, service experience is a core and the most competitive differentiator. We are delighted to sponsor and participate in The Hotel show for the second consecutive year. The event is an ideal platform for us to demonstrate our pioneering eHospitality solutions designed to give a strong value proposition to our customers in the hospitality segment,” said Abdulla Al Ahmed, senior vice-president — business, at etisalat. He said etisalat’s eHospitality services provide hotels in the UAE the winning advantage of high-speed Internet, high definition voice and content-rich TV services for a unique guest experience. Samsung Electronics, a global specialist in digital media and digital convergence technologies, showcased its latest range of Hospitality TVs, video walls, digital signage and mobility solutions at the show. Samsung understands the hospitality sector needs when it comes to state-of-the-art technology. That has become evident by the fact that some of the world’s premium hospitality brands are partnering with Samsung to create some of the most breathtaking interiors, said Madhav Narayan, Regional Director, GCC, Enterprise Business, Samsung Gulf Electronics.