Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, saw a double digit increase in the number of hotel guests during August compared to the same period in 2016 driving the total number of guests in the city to more than 3.1 million so far this year.
That data comes from the Department of Culture and Tourism, formerly known as Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority. The department found that there were 426,912 hotel guests at the emirate’s 166 hotels and hotel apartments in August, a rise of 13 percent over last year.
In addition, the total number of hotel guests so far in 2017 is up 7 percent in comparison to the same time frame in 2016, with occupancy standing at 68 percent.
The emirate’s hotels saw visitor numbers increase across all three regions in August following strong domestic tourism visitors from within the UAE, with Abu Dhabi recording an 11 percent increase in hotel guests, Al Ain recording a 20 percent rise and Al Dhafra up 51 percent.
There were also notable increases in hotel guests from Abu Dhabi’s tier one markets of India, rising 24 percent to 31,202, China 68 percent to 28,747, Saudi Arabia 9.9 percent to 23,111 and the United States up 35 percent to 11,703.
The lifting of visa restrictions at the start of the year on Chinese travelers has resulted in large growth, according to the board, with China now becoming Abu Dhabi’s largest overseas source market, heading India and the U.K.
A number of upcoming high-profile events, including the opening of Louvre Abu Dhabi, the annual Abu Dhabi Art fair, and the Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, are all expected to bring in large numbers of domestic and international travelers to the country.