My introduction to Jamal Al-Zeedi was in 2008 when we worked together on a mid-range hotel project in Muscat. Jamal and his company, EARC Sabla, were the appointed architects, and we were the proposed operators.
Jamal and his team were responsible for bringing the project to life. Their responsibilities went well beyond the role of architect, as they were entrusted by the owner of the project to arrange all government approvals, among many other tasks. My memory of that approval process was one of appreciation for the calm organising skills of Jamal. He ensured that the many approval documents (I remember a number of around 17) were identified, addressed and processed.
In turn, this minimised the need for the owner to be involved in all levels, and meant that we as operator would move into a property that had all approvals in place. As an operator we have moved into properties where these processes were not undertaken in the same professional manner. Those shortcomings led to significant delays in opening the property, and a corresponding loss of income. Never a positive start for a new business.
From an operator’s perspective I remain impressed with the ability of Jamal and EARC Sabla to present a simple and effective hotel design that addresses the many practical needs of the operator. Operators are often presented with a fait accompli when we assume the lease or management of a hotel property. And the result is often a beautifully produced monument that bears no practical application.
Should you be building a hotel that is designed to address the needs of the market, attract a sustainable level of business, and make a sizeable return on your investment over the long life of the asset, then you need to start with the right design. Jamal and his team can start you off on the right foot.
Since our first working involvement I have been pleased to maintain an ongoing working relationship with Jamal. Through that association I continue to learn from and appreciate the professional and personal skills of Jamal.
I regularly recommend Jamal to hotel owners starting the process of investing their own resources in a major hotel project. As a company we continue to seek his professional support and advice.