Marriott Cairo to renovate main palace

Gadling Labs spent a good chunk of time in Cairo this past September so we perked up when we heard about an update to our favorite Marriott. The hotel, splayed on the central island of Zamalek, is a calm, warm slice of history in the stir-crazy beehive of Egypt. Apart from two looming towers and a massive courtyard, the hotel is centered around an ornate, historical palace, originally built in 1869 to house guests for the Suez Canal opening.

That palace is the focus of the big news this fall, as the Marriott has just announced a comprehensive renovation to the building as well as several other changes to the property. Big improvements will be made to facets of the palace, which includes over a dozen meeting rooms, the Omar Khayyam Casino, a dozen places to eat and drink and a battery of shops — all while keeping the historical angles of the property well-preserved.

In addition to the main palace improvements, a swath of rooms in the west wing will be eviscerated to make space for a larger, more comprehensive spa facility. Those updates are scheduled to finish some time in 2012.

All total, the full renovation should add a great deal of improvement to an already outstanding property on the banks of the Nile. We can’t wait to get back to check things out.