The joint venture of Lebanon’s Arabian Construction Company (ACC) and the UAE’s Drake & Scull International and has been awarded the estimated SR2.7bn ($720m) contract to build phase three of the Jabal Omar development in Mecca.

The local Jabal Omar Development Company awarded the contract in mid-December after it has received bids from five contracting groups for its project in Mecca in October.

The ACC/Drake & Scull joint venture’s price of SR2.7bn ($720m) was about 6 per cent lower than SR2.9bn submitted by the local Al-Yamama Company. The other bidders are the local Al-Redwan Group of Companies at SR3.1bn, India’s Shapoorji Pallonji also at SR3.1bn, and the local Nesma & Partners Company at SR3.6bn.

The third phase of the Jabal Omar scheme will involve the construction of four hotel towers, with each tower 33 to 42-storeys high. The total built up area will be about 400,000 square metres. Two of the towers will contain a five-star Hilton hotel and the other two towers will contain a three-star Double Tree hotel.

The four hotel towers have been designed by the US-based architect Arcrea Studio.

The four towers will be located in the North Zone near the entrance of the Jabal Omar Development and will be positioned next to the planned pedestrian boulevard, which will allow access from the future railway station to the Haram.

In March, a joint venture of the local Saudi Arabian Baytur Construction Company and the local Azmeel Contracting & Construction Corporation was awarded an estimated SR1.49bn contract to build the second phase of the Jabal Omar scheme.

The second phase of the development involves the construction of four hotel towers to be operated by the Starwood Hotels and Resorts group. Two of the towers will be built under The Westin hotel brand, while the remaining towers will be run by Sheraton.

The Jabal Omar Development will consist of 37 towers when completed. The local Nesma & Partners Construction is currently working on the first phase of the development, which involves the construction of nine towers. In December 2010, Nesma was awarded SR3.4bn construction contract for the work. Nesma replaced the local Saudi Binladin and Saudi Oger, which had originally been appointed to build the first phase.