Renovating 159 rooms at Mövenpick Resort & Spa Dead Sea

The USD 2.2 million project includes furnishing 159 rooms located at the Northern and Southern villages, as well as the main building of the resort. In addition, the project includes full maintenance of the rooms and bathrooms, painting of walls, installing wall paper and electrical fixtures. The A/C system will also be upgraded.

The mock up rooms were completed in August 2015. The execution will start in February 2016, and it’s expected to finish in December 2016.

"Vision is the art of seeing the invisible"
Jonathan Swift (1667-1745) Author of Gulliver's Travel

Tribute to the late Khalil Talhouni

Zara Investment Holding Co. Ltd. was based on such a vision… one man's vision of transforming his country into a first class world destination. May 1999 witnessed the premature death of Mr Khalil Talhouni, the founder of Zara. Although his short life ended, he enriched his country with monuments that will last a lifetime.

Mr. Talhouni envisioned a Jordan with five star hotels and leisure complexes that rival any developments in the Arab world. Through his vision and drive, he was able to create a series of stepping-stones across the country; luxury hotels in various tourist destinations that would not only provide the best service, but also would become attractions in and of themselves.

World-renowned architects designed the hotels and buildings, but Mr. Talhouni's passion for architecture meant he himself was always heavily involved every step along the way.

Mr. Talhouni had a clear vision of what he wanted and he applied a comprehensive approach in order to translate what he planned for into reality. This approach led Zara into becoming self-sufficient, self-contained and independent.

He was attentive to the finest details from the blue prints, to the projects construction management, to Zara's art collection, to the hotels' landscaping, to tourist transportation, to investing in the hospitality skills of his staff, all handled under Zara's umbrella.

Today Zara's projects stand tall as a great tribute to a great man whose vision has been realized. Each detail and every corner are a constant reminder that he is still among us.

Mr Khalil Talhouni's best friend and long time business partner Mr. Sabih Al Masri shared those same dreams and vision and together they co-founded Zara. Today Mr. Masri is the Chairman of Board of Directors of Zara, Mr. Masri is deeply committed to the path they started and on taking their shared dreams to new heights.

John Elliot
of Wimberly Allison Tong and Goo Architects

"He should have been an architect. He possessed the instinctive ability to understand the three dimensional and long-term implications of arranging a plan in a particular way. His small sketches on pieces of paper done in hotel rooms or on planes were amazing for their accuracy and perception. The intellectual ability to switch form the micro to the macro and pursue specialist subjects into the finest details earned him the respect and admiration of the entire consultant team."

Simeon Halstead
Arcadia Design Architects

"He had the vision when all we had were bits of paper, he believed in our abilities when we had nothing built to show him. Someone once wrote that architecture was "frozen music" to which Khalil was the finest conductor. I hope that our projects will be a great tribute to this great man for all the faith he kept with us; to his great support to all our dreams. I shall always remember and his legacy in our industry stands proud now for all to see.

The hotels owned by Zara Investment are among the first establishments in Jordan to house and support works of local and international artists. With the growth in popularity and the maturity of the art scene in Jordan, this initiative at institutional art has resulted in Zara owning a large collection of substantial artworks. Many of the artists that were identified by Zara, are now well established and featured in major events such as Christies art auctions in Dubai. Zara Gallery at Grand Hyatt Amman Hotel follows the vision of its mother company Zara Investment in emphasizing the importance of art and in supporting artists. The entire art collection as well as the profile of each artist can be viewed and purchased online by visiting Zara Gallery website.

With a firm belief in their country and the region's growth potential, the late Khalil Talhouni and Chairman of the Board Sabih Al Masri, along with a group of independent investors, local banks, and investment companies, founded Zara Investment (Holding) Co. Ltd. in 1994 with one clear goal: to provide tourists with a network of first class hotels and services throughout the Kingdom.

Zara has firmly established itself as the linchpin of Jordan's tourism industry with its network of 5-star hotels and resorts that perfectly complement Jordan's sites and attractions.

1994 1996 1999 2000 2009
  • Zara Investment Holding
  • Intercontinental Jordan
  • Mövenpick Resort Petra
  • Grand Hyatt Amman
  • Mövenpick Resort & Spa Dead Sea
  • Mövenpick Nabatean Castle Hotel
  • Mövenpick Resort & Residence Aqaba
  • Mövenpick Resort Tala Bay Aqaba

A pioneer in its approach, Zara chose the legendary Nabatean City of Petra as the site of its first venture with the Mövenpick Resort Petra in 1996.

This Arabesque hotel, with its Islamic motifs, inlaid marble works, handcrafted oriental wood, gold-leafed and hand-painted walls and ceilings, has become a haven for tourists coming to visit the ancient old red-rose city of Petra.

Zara then moved north to the lowest point on earth, the Dead Sea of Jordan. Named by Conde Nast as one of the finest resorts in the world, the Mövenpick Resort & Spa Dead Sea is an oasis of pure luxury.

The world-class Zara spa is the largest and most advanced in the Middle East, and is unique for making use of the Dead Sea’s natural therapeutic ingredients, providing a myriad of treatments to soothe the body, relax the mind, and seduce the soul.

In December 1998, Zara unveiled a new landmark on the hills of Amman, amidst the financial and business district of the city: the Grand Hyatt Amman. Its distinctly modern design, world-class restaurants, Art Gallery, and one of the largest ballrooms in the country have made it one of the most popular hotels in Amman. In fact the Grand Hyatt Amman was rated the most successful hotel in Amman for the year 2002 and ranked one of the top 75 hotels in the world by BILANZ magazine.

The hotel enjoys a direct link to Hyatt Tower offering beautifully furnished and serviced apartments ranging from 1 to 4 bedrooms. The hotel is also linked to Zara Expo, Jordan's finest exhibition and conference venue. In addition, Zara Expo boasts a world-class auditorium.

Also linked to Zara Expo is Zara Centre, the first modern entertainment and shopping complex in Jordan, arranged over four flours of mixed retail and leisure space, containing a food court and a five-screen multiplex led by the world renowned Grand cinemas.

The founding of the Grand Hyatt Amman, the Hyatt Tower, Zara Expo, and Zara Centre has created an important physical landmark, as well as a cultural milestone in the capital.

InterContinental Jordan Hotel, the oldest 5-star hotel in Jordan since 1963, has long been the choice of visiting dignitaries, discerning guests, and Arab intellectuals. It has maintained its reputation for luxury, quality, and style for almost four decades. The Hotel is presently undergoing a JD14 million renovation project that will lead towards a trendier, more fashionable and stylish hotel scene, blending traditional Jordanian hospitality with modern day, contemporary design.

In the year 2000, Zara expanded its hotel portfolio in Jordan to build the Mövenpick Resort Aqaba on the shores of the Jordanian Red Sea. As the first 5-star hotel of international standards in the port city of Aqaba, the resort is located near the archaeological site of the Islamic city of Ayla. The unique building, which blends the spirit of ancient Ayla and modern Aqaba, connects two pieces of land with a bridge.

During the same year, Zara bought and remodeled the Mövenpick Nabatean Castle Hotel in Petra. Located on a hillside at 1400-meter altitude, the hotel reveals a spectacular view over the Great Rift Valley, only 10 minutes from the entrance to Petra. The renowned Jordanian architect, and winner of the Agha Khan Award for Islamic architecture, Mr. Rasem Badran, designed this magnificent edifice. This hotel was also awarded the HCE (Hygiene Conscious Establishment) trophy of SGS (SocieteGenerale de Surveillance) for the year 2002.

In 2009, Zara completed its 7th 5-star Hotel branded as Mövenpick Resort Tala Bay. The Hotel is situated at the southern shores of the red sea at the Gulf of Aqaba, a beachfront of breathtaking scenery and untouched corals. Set on 65,300 square meters, the hotel is part of Jordan's first integrated resort and residential community known as Tala Bay. It is also part of a group of international hotel chains all slated to open in that area. This development is in line with Zara Investment's aggressive growth policy aimed at maintaining and securing its leading market share in the Jordanian hotel industry.

In order to translate its vision into reality, and in order to ensure the inclusion of Zara's special features within each of its hotels, Zara's supervised the execution of its various projects around the Kingdom through Zara Consultancy & Projects Management Company, also known as Ayla Consultancy; an in-house company that carried out the project management services of projects exceeding the value of $400 million. Zara's ambitions stretch far and wide. The innovative and expansive approach of Zara - providing world-class service, luxurious rooms, remarkable architecture, and interior design - has transformed Jordan's overall approach to the hospitality industry.