Monday March 21, 2022
I wrote – Shaima Hefzy:
Hisham Tawfik, Minister of Public Business Sector, witnessed the signing ceremony of the management and operation contract for the historic Shepheard Hotel in downtown Cairo, which was held at Abdeen Palace.
The agreement was signed between the global “Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group” in cooperation between the “Al Sharif Tourism and Hotels” company, which is affiliated with the Saudi “Al Sharif” Holding Group, and the “Egoth” company, which is affiliated with the Holding Company for Tourism and Hotels, one of the companies of the Ministry of Public Business Sector.
The Minister of Public Business Sector explained that this contract comes within the framework of the ministry’s plan to develop its affiliated hotels, whether historical or contemporary, where a cooperation had taken place between EGOTH, the owner of Shepheard Hotel and the Saudi Sharif Holding Group, to develop the Shepheard Hotel at an investment cost of 1.4 billion pounds, while raising it to the level of five stars. Today, the hotel is signed under the global brand “Mandarin Oriental”, to be the first hotel in Egypt to carry this distinctive brand.
He added that the development project – due to be completed in 2024 – aims to increase the hotel capacity by building an annex building with the same height as the current hotel on the administrative rear of the building, which has been completed and removed. The hotel building lacks parking spaces, as well as adding a group of hotel rooms, services and specialized restaurants, and a new swimming pool.
Nawaf bin Fayez Al-Sharif, CEO of the Saudi “Al-Sharif” Group, said: “With the group’s belief in the tourism sector, and with an eye to the future, we signed in 2020 a 35-year agreement with the Egyptian General Company for Tourism and Hotels (EGOTH) to finance, develop and operate the Shepheard Hotel in Cairo.
Fayez bin Abdel Hakim Al Sharif, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Al Sharif Group, said that the group aspires to create a distinguished relationship and to be an example in the Egyptian market, and now we are pleased to announce the signing of an agreement with the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group to manage the Shepheard Hotel in Cairo, which is being developed. Under its unique global, historical and cultural specifications.
The Executive Managing Director of the Egyptian General Company for Tourism and Hotels “EGOTH” stated that within the framework of the fruitful cooperation between the company and the Saudi Sharif Holding Group, the ancient historical value of “Shepheard” Hotel will be revived and its level raised to five stars to be an attraction for international tourism.
On the other hand, James Riley, CEO of Mandarin Oriental Group, said: “We are pleased to expand our work in Egypt to manage the Shepheard Hotel and bring it back to life, and the project provides an ideal opportunity to strengthen our brand in the Middle East and Africa.”
It is worth mentioning that the Shepheard Hotel is one of the oldest historical hotels in Egypt. It was founded in 1841 AD and was based in the Azbakeya neighborhood and was burnt down during the Cairo fire. The current Shepherd Hotel was reconstructed in the Garden City area in front of the Nile River, which is classified as one of the oldest hotels on the regional level.. The Saudi “Al-Sharif” has been developed and restored since 2020 at an investment cost of $90 million, and the French designer Cybele de Margerie is participating in this process, which seeks to preserve the spirit of the ancient building, while enhancing modern facilities and services, and is expected to reopen in 2024.
Just as the historic hotel witnessed important events, stages and major changes in the Egyptian society, “Shepherd” will be on a date with a new stage, in which cooperation will take place – for the first time in Egypt – with the “Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group”, the owner and operator of the most luxurious hotels and resorts in the world, which has been awarded Grand Prizes, and operates 34 hotels and 7 apartment complexes in 24 countries.