Shane McGinley;  February 12, 2013

Dubai’s iconic Burj al Arab saw a major boost in Chinese guests celebrating recent New Year festivities, hotel operator Jumeirah Group told Arabian Business.

“For the Chinese New Year, Chinese occupancy at Burj Al Arab was around 72 percent,” a Jumeirah Group spokesperson said.

For the annual celebration, which took place on February 10, the Burj al Arab unveiled a series of specially targeted events and promotions.

“Highlights of Jumeirah’s celebration of the Chinese New Year include the beaming of a specially commissioned design for the Year of the Snake onto the sail of Burj Al Arab, a VIP reception on the beach, special menus at Junsui the hotel’s pan-Asian restaurant and the staging of a traditional lion dance,” the spokesperson said.

The sail-shaped hotel on a manmade island off the coast of Dubai has proved particularly popular with wealthy Chinese tourists, the Jumeirah spokesperson added.

“On average the Chinese market represents 26 percent of business at Burj Al Arab annually. This compares to 3.2 percent for Chinese business across all Jumeirah hotels in Dubai and 5.8 percent across Jumeirah global portfolio of hotels and resorts.”

Dubai is home to around 200,000 Chinese residents and in 2011, 214,000 Chinese tourists travelled to Dubai, according to Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing.

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