A Hotelier on the RISE

By: Editor In Chief
Thu 29 June,2017

Cerrah Sami Kaplanci, General Manger Rixos Bab Al Bahr

Filed Under: Hotel & Business

Kaplanci oversees the hotel's operations and the commercial performance of Rixos Bab Al Bahr Resort, which includes 650 guest rooms and suites, 15 restaurants and bars, the spa and a conference center.

With over 24 years of international hospitality experience, Kaplanci’s previous roles include cluster general manager of Rixos Sharm El Sheikh and Rixos Seagate Sharm in Egypt; general manager for Rixos Alamein in Egypt; general manager of the Sunrise Select Royal Makadi Resort in Egypt; assistant director of operations for the Joy Group of Hotels in Turkey and general manager of Akka Hotels in Turkey.

His career began in Germany at the Intercontinental Köln in Germany after he graduated with a double degree in hotel management and economics from Bavaria Altötting, Germany in 1992. He then spent three years there before he moved to Turkey to join The Iberotel Sarigerme Park in 1995.

German/Turkish oriented, Kaplanci brings years of invaluable experience to the resort, where he will be responsible for a number of the resort’s developmental projects including the opening of a new waterpark, new restaurants and major resort refurbishments

Situated on the pristine white sands of Ras Al Khaimah’s tranquil Al Marjan Island, Rixos Bab Al Bahr enjoys a beautiful beach, stylish rooms, upmarket restaurants and a luxurious spa. But what really sets Rixos Bab Al Bahr apart is its Ultra-All-Inclusive concept.

A resort with a difference, at Rixos Bab Al Bahr, guest can indulge in all the hotel has to offer. With few exceptions, everything is inclusive from the kaleidoscope of dining options and unlimited beverages, to the diverse choice of entertainment and nightlife, kids clubs, spa, sports, and recreational activities. Even the mini bar is included in the rate.

With its location in Ras Al Khaimah, one of the UAE’s most up-and- coming destinations, Rixos Bab Al Bahr is the perfect getaway for either UAE residents or international visitors alike.

The spectacular pyramid design of the resort ensures that most of the resort’s 650 rooms and suites enjoy a view of the crystal blue Arabian Gulf. In addition to being the ultimate getaway for families, one of the resort’s three pyramids is dedicated adults-only building and configured into suites to suit larger parties of friends and couples.

Decorated in cool, sophisticated hues of azure and bronze, the rooms feature a wealth of comfort and convenience while the marble-clad bathrooms add an extra touch of luxury.


The Rixos Group has experienced substantial growth over recent years. Please give us an introduction to Rixos Group.

The Rixos Group look caters to provide a unique concept within its hotels such as Rixos Bab Al Bahr that offers Ultra All Inclusive to its guests. The key elements within the hotel are the Entertainment and F&B services for the guests. We ensure that we have the best Entertainment Groups within this region to perform and we constantly look for avenues to enhance our 24 hours F&B services.

Ras Al Khaimah is burgeoning emirate and continues to grow in popularity not just within the Middle East but internationally. How is Rixos Bab Al Bahr positioning Ras Al Khaimah as a tourist destination?

Rixos Bab Al Bahr is the only resort to provide an ultra-all-inclusive concept in UAE. We have a unique concept compared to all hotels and resorts in UAE. This has enabled us to venture into new markets and attract new tourists from nations such as Kazakhstan, Czech Republic and Slovakia who had not visited UAE previously.

Ras Al Khaimah’s tourism industry has significantly evolved with various projects. How has this impacted the business of the hotel as compared to previous years?

Ras Al Khaimah has developed and invested in their mountains, especially, Jebel Jais having the longest zip line in the world. Many shopping malls have sprouted across the city along with golf courses, Jazeera Aviation Club and a new Sailing Club. These developments have enhanced our business as guests have more to experience while explore the city and its surroundings.


What would you say sets Rixos Bab Al Bahr apart from other respected and recognized Hotels in Ras Al Khaimah?

As mentioned earlier, we are the only to offer and ultra – all – inclusive hotel in UAE.

GMs are responsible for their hotel’s reputation. With over 22 years of international hospitality experience, what would you say have been the biggest challenges you have faced throughout your career and how have you overcome them?

The biggest challenge that I have faced is working in Rixos Bab Al Bahr as it has employees from 30 countries who are accustomed to their individual work cultures, beliefs and habits. The biggest task is to get all the employees to work towards a common goal which is Guest Satisfaction. To overcome this challenge I took the approach of treating everyone equally and setting targets together as a team in order to provide a sense of ownership for each employee.


With Dubai winning the World Expo 2020, what do you think are the main challenges that hotel GMs will face in 2020?

With my hotel experience I can say that during 2020 the real demand has to be analyzed carefully and right value for the money should be set in order to attract as much people as possible for Expo 2020.