Dubai – the big winner at the 20th edition of the World Travel Awards

Just days after being chosen to host the 2020 World Expo, Dubai emerged as the big winner at the 20th edition of the World Travel Awards. The event known as the Oscars of the travel industry recognised Dubai as home of the world’s leading hotel, leading new hotel, beach resort, spa resort and new resort of the year.

World Travel Awards celebrated its 20th Anniversary this year and is acknowledged across the globe as the ultimate travel accolade.

Winners on the night included Intercontinental Hotels & Resorts who were voted “World’s Leading Hotel Brand” whilst JW Marriott Marquis Dubai was named “World’s Leading New Hotel” and “World’s Leading Hotel” went to Burj Al Arab. “World’s Leading Spa Resort” was awarded to Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, Dubai.

In the destination categories, Kenya triumphed with “World’s Leading Safari Destination”, “World’s Leading Culinary Destination” was captured by Peru with “World’s Leading Golf Destination” was awarded to Portugal.

Voters from around the world selected Etihad Airways as “World’s Leading Airline” whilst AirAsia was voted “World’s Leading Low-Cost Airline”.

From the Travel Technology sector, highlights included Expedia who were voted “World’s Leading Online Travel Agency Website” and Marriott Hotels & Resorts who were awarded “World’s Leading Hotel Brand Website”.

It was also an evening of celebration for Qatar with Doha being named “World’s Leading Business Travel Destination” for the third year running. The St. Regis Doha was named “World’s Leading Business Hotel” while “World’s Leading Hotel & Residences” was awarded to W Doha Hotel & Residences. “World’s Leading Travel Agency” went to Regency Travel & Tours, “World’s Excellence in Service Award” to La Cigale Hotel and “World’s Leading Villa” to the Royal Villa at Sharq Village & Spa.


  • World’s leading airline: Etihad Airways;
  • Leading airport: Singapore Changi Airport;
  • Leading beach destination: Grace Bay Beach, Providenciales, Turks & Caicos Islands;
  • Leading beach resort: Le Royal Meridien Beach Resort & Spa, Dubai;
  • Leading cabin crew: Etihad Airways;
  • Leading casino resort: MGM Grand Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas;
  • Leading cruise line: Royal Caribbean International;
  • Leading culinary destination: Peru;
  • Leading destination: Dubai;
  • Leading golf destination: Portugal;
  • Leading honeymoon destination: Mauritius;
  • Leading hotel: Burj Al Arab, Dubai;
  • Leading island destination: Maldives;
  • Leading low-cost airline: AirAsia;
  • Leading luxury hotel: The Oberoi Gurgaon, India;
  • Leading luxury resort: InterContinental Samui Baan Taling Ngam Resort, Thailand;
  • Leading luxury train: Maharajas’ Express;
  • Leading new hotel: JW Marriott Marquis Dubai;
  • Leading safari destination: Kenya;
  • Leading spa resort: Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, Dubai;
  • Leading themed resort: Universal Orlando Resort, Florida;
  • Leading wellness hotel: Grand Hotel Lienz, Austria;
  • Most innovative airline: Korean Air;
  • Most romantic resort: Baros Maldives.