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Marriott International plans to expand UAE presence

Bethesda, Md.-based hotelier Marriott International Inc. plans to open five more properties in the United Arab Emirates by the end of 2018, having already added six year-to-date.

Together, the 11 hotels will comprise 2,600 rooms and boost Marriott's portfolio in the country to 59 properties with upwards of 17,000 rooms across six emirates, according to a release.

In the first half of 2018, Marriott opened Aloft Palm Jumeirah, Aloft Me'aisam and Aloft City Centre Deira in Dubai, marking the brand's expansion into the city.

Marriott also debuted its eco-conscious Element Hotels brand in the region with the opening of Element Me'aisam in Dubai, while the Ritz-Carlton Ras Al Khaimah, Al Hamra Beach in Ras Al Khaimah opened as the country's fifth Ritz-Carlton property.

The company also began operating the Yas Island Hotel, which it plans to make Abu Dhabi's first W Hotel in early 2019.

The five new hotels expected to open by 2018-end are the Courtyard by Marriott Al Barsha, Four Points by Sheraton Sharjah in Sharjah, Aloft Dubai South, The Abu Dhabi EDITION and W Dubai - The Palm.

Marriott's five-year development pipeline involves over 20 new properties in the country.

The hotelier projects a more than 70% growth for its global branded residential portfolio over four years. Across the Middle East and Africa, Marriott plans to more than double its residential portfolio with the scheduled opening of eight projects by 2022.