Malaysia hotels cater to Muslim tourists

November 24, 2012 § Leave a comment

On the sixth floor of an upscale hotel in the Kuala Lumpur suburb of Ampang, Quranic verses are piped through loudspeakers in the hallway 24 hours a day.

In the guestrooms, a Quran sits on the bedside table, and garments for men and women to wear while praying are neatly folded on the bed. In the bathrooms, a dedicated ablution tap is provided for guests to perform the ritual cleansing that Muslims must complete before praying.

Known as the “Islamic floor”, these rooms are reserved for Muslim guests only.

Hotel rooms also have the qibla – an arrow indicating the direction of Mecca

Downstairs in the lobby, the call to prayer sounds five times a day, calling guests and staff to the surau, or prayer room, where one of the hotel’s four resident imams will lead the faithful.

The De Palma group, which claims to offer Malaysia’s first Sharia, or Islamic-compliant hotels, is one of a growing number of tourism operators around the world seeking to appeal to the burgeoning number of Muslim travellers who represent one of the fastest-growing tourism markets globally. […]

In Australia, the Gold Coast – the city renowned for its beaches and theme parks in the state of Queensland – is also trying to draw Muslim tourists. It has opened prayer rooms in shopping malls and theme parks, and some leading hotels provide halal food and copies of the Quran in guest rooms.

Source: Al Jazeera

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