From new tour operators bringing foreign tourists to Syria to recent developments in tourism projects in Tartous, Lattakia or Palmyra; is the tourism industry having momentum?
The number of foreigners who visited Syria this year increased by more than 200 percent compared with 2021, a year impacted by COVID-related restrictions.
A Russian civilian passenger plane recently arrived at the Lattakia International Airport, signalling the resumption of direct flights between Syria and Russia after a twelve-year hiatus.
New documents have revealed the identities of the members of the board of directors of the Syrian Saudi Touristic Investment Company, the company that formally owns the Four Seasons Hotel, the largest and most luxurious hotel property in the country.
This month, the government inaugurated a five-star hotel in Damascus and laid the foundation stones for three other projects in the capital and the coast, as it seeks to attract investment in a foreign currency-generating industry.
The government has inaugurated a new hotel in Damascus, a rare business project to see the light of the day in the tourism sector.
Cham Wings Airlines, the only private airline in Syria and the only one in the country that flies to Minsk, has been accused of facilitating the trafficking of Syrian, Iraqi, and Yemeni migrants to Belarus.
Last week, Ali Reza Rashidian, head of Iran’s Hajj and Pilgrimage Organisation, met with Syrian officials in Damascus to discuss religious tourism and agreed to permit Iranian Shia pilgrims into Syria.
Two international tour agencies have recently restarted operations in Syria after the government resumed authorising tourist visas for foreign travellers earlier this month. A company from the UK and another from Germany have advertised tours to Syria for later this year and into next year.
Profits of Syria’s state-owned hotels have increased during the first half of this year due to the depreciation of the national currency. The government has continued to develop its domestic tourism as it searches for ways to replenish its depleted state coffers with foreign currency and to encourage investment.
The Katerji Group has signed a contract with the Syrian government to turn the site of Aleppo’s old military hospital into a tourist complex, highlighting the expansion of the sanctioned Katerji brothers -- Hussam and Baraa -- into the tourism sector.
A new hotel managed by the Katerji family opened its doors in Aleppo, highlighting the ambitions and influence of the family in the country’s northern city.
The Ministry of Tourism, which last week became the first Syrian ministry to be blacklisted by OFAC, has released data on the performance of some of the hotels under its management.
The Ministry of Interior issued around 182,000 passports in the first eight months of this year, of which 41,898 were for Syrians living abroad, according to a government official. Passports continue to represent a rare source of foreign currency for the government.
The government has signed two contracts for large investments in the tourism sector reminiscent of similar projects from the pre-2011 era. However, the significant deterioration of the business environment since that time raises doubts about their feasibility.
The Kuwaiti bourse blocked trading on shares of Marakez following a decision by that company to divest from a large project in the Syrian coastal area. Meanwhile, confusion also surrounds another large resort near Tartous.
Cham Palaces and Hotels, Syria’s largest five-star hotel chain, said its revenues increased last year, thanks largely to a rising number of foreign tourists.
The Ministry of Tourism has awarded a contract for the restoration of a historic building transformed into a hotel in the old city of Aleppo.
The number of foreign visitors entering Syria increased by 35 percent last year, coming overwhelmingly from the Arab world.
A Kuwaiti company is considering selling its stake in a large tourism project located on Syria’s coast.