A three-hundred-room Holiday Inn hotel is being built next to the Old City.
It will be the first international chain to be built so close to the city centre – the others (Four Seasons, Meridian/Dedeman and Sheraton) are all on the Mezzeh Autostrad. You’d need a taxi to get anywhere.
The company building the hotel says the Holiday Inn will be a 2000 square meter site, within walking distance of the Citadel and Souq Al-Hamidiyeh. That places it on the western side of the Old City. So could this be the site, in front of ‘Royal Suites’ and next to Jisr Thwara:
The only other site “in walking distance” of the Citadel is the skeleton building site in Merjeh.
The construction was never finished, and has laid empty for decades. It is ripe for redevelopment.
But wherever it is, Damascenes will breathe a sigh of relief when they realise that the massive ‘Holiday Inn Old City’ isn’t actually in the Old City.
It will feature a restaurant, open all night, a bar and nightclub, shops, a business centre and laundry.
The new hotel is due to open early in 2011.