Shivani DDPPL

SalamAir enters into partnership with Smart Travel

SalamAir-ceremony

An official ceremony was held in Dubai to celebrate the partnership of SalamAir with Smart Travel. Captain Mohamed Ahmed, CEO, SalamAir, stated that over the past year, the airline carried over half a million passengers aboard the aircraft and currently operates to nine destinations. SalamAir is the first low-cost carrier from the Sultanate of Oman which started operations about 14 months ago with the preferred aircraft Airbus A320 for its economical standard and comfortable for passengers. Two SalamAir flights operate in Dubai, besides flying to other destinations like Jeddah, Pakistan, Doha, Shiraz, etc. Ahmed further stated that although the flight has the capacity to carry 186 passengers, they only accommodate 174 to provide comfort to passengers. The objective is to ensure the cost is kept at minimal rates so that it is affordable for more travellers.

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Royal Jordanian to resume Erbil and Sulaymaniyah services from April 1

Royal Jordanian

Royal Jordanian (RJ) will resume its scheduled flights between Amman and each of Erbil and Sulaymaniyah, in northern Iraq, as of April 1, 2018. RJ passengers on these routes will enjoy the added benefit of reduced round-trip fares, at JD280, in an offer valid from March 16 to March 31, 2018, for travel to take place between April 1 and June 8, 2018. RJ will operate 10 weekly flights to Erbil and four weekly flights to Sulaymaniyah. The decision to relaunch the flights was taken as Iraqi authorities announced the reopening of the airports in these cities. Airlines operating to Erbil and Sulaymaniyah had suspended their flights on September 29, 2017, upon directions from the Iraqi authorities. RJ customers are invited to purchase their tickets on rj.com or by visiting RJ’s global sales offices and through travel agents.

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310-room Kempinski Hotel Muscat opens doors

Kempinksi Hotel Muscat_Ballroom_Evening

Located in the modern community of Al Mouj, Muscat, the five-star Kempinski Hotel Muscat is an unparalleled luxury destination in the capital of Oman. The hotel features 310 rooms and suites, state-of-the-art meetings and events facilities, world-class restaurants and bars, a fully equipped fitness centre and a luxury spa, allowing visitors to revel in the beauty of both the location and warm Omani hospitality. Serving as the gateway to authentic Omani adventure, visitors can experience the unbeatable mix of local traditions and world-class European luxury at the luxury hotel.

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IHG expands luxury footprint, adds Regent to portfolio

Regent Beijing_Lobby Lounge (1)

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) announced to bring Regent into its brand portfolio at the top end of the luxury segment and will accelerate its growth globally. It has agreed to acquire a 51 per cent stake in Regent Hotels and Resorts for $39 million in cash. IHG’s intention is to grow the brand from six hotels today to over 40 hotels in key global gateway city and resort locations over the long term. The Regent brand has set the benchmark for luxury hotels globally since it was founded in 1970. It has a world-renowned heritage, built around the elegant, timeless design of its hotels and rooted in its focus on delivering a truly unique and superior luxury experience for guests. The acquisition of Regent is part of one of IHG’s new strategic initiatives focused on continuing to expand its footprint in the fast-growing $60 billion luxury segment.  This initiative is supported by the creation of a new dedicated division to further enhance capabilities in this area and will be funded by IHG’s efficiency programme. IHG also announced that following an extensive refurbishment due to commence in early 2020, InterContinental Hong Kong will become a Regent Hotel in early 2021.

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VFS Global acquires Middle Eastern FMC partner, Al Etimad

ZubinKarkaria_0102-mittel

VFS Global has agreed to take over 100 per cent of the Middle Eastern Facility Management Company (FMC) Al Etimad from TasHeel Group as per a binding agreement signed between both parties. Al Etimad operates as a FMC partner for VFS Global in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, Libya and Tunisia. The Al Etimad visa operations in Pakistan are not included in the acquisition. To benefit from operational efficiencies and synergies with VFS Global, Al Etimad will be integrated in VFS Global’s operations after completion of the transaction. This will enable further development of services and solutions, and improve the overall service to the missions served and the visa applicants in the five countries. Zubin Karkaria, CEO, VFS Global Group, “We are very pleased to take over complete ownership of Al Etimad and Vega. It will enable us to accelerate further development of the business and improve overall performance through greater integration. I would like to thank the TasHeel Group for partnering us in successfully managing the visa services operations in these five countries.”

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Turkish Airlines closes Airbus and Boeing orders

Turkish Airlines Boeing 777-300ER

Turkish Airlines has announced that, in order to insure the need for wide body aircraft, the Incorporation has decided to purchase 50 firm and 10 optional aircraft, a total of 60 wide body aircraft, of which six are to be delivered in 2019, 14 in 2020, 10 in 2021, 12 in 2022, 11 in 2023 and seven in 2024. According to this, a total of 30 B787-9 aircraft, of which 25 firm and five optional, will be purchased from Boeing and a total of 30 A350-900 aircraft, of which 25 firm and five optional will be purchased from Airbus. Commenting on the closed orders, M İlker Aycı, Chairman of the Board and the Executive Committee, Turkish Airlines said, “Today, we’re pleased to conclude this process which will bring a landmark benefit not only to Turkish Airlines, but also to Turkey’s aviation, by firmly ordering these aircrafts to be added to our ever-expanding fleet. This great step, which will further strengthen our ever-expanding fleet for 2023, our Republic’s 100th year, and bring our passenger’s satisfaction to a much higher level will bring a great acceleration to the steady rise of Turkish Airlines.”

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Bahrain launches its first Park Regis hotel

Park Regis Lotus Hotel Exterior

StayWell Holdings announced the expansion of its Park Regis brand into Bahrain with the opening of the country’s first Park Regis hotel in the city of Manama (Juffair). Centrally located in Bahrain’s capital of Manama, Park Regis Lotus Hotel has easy access to the diplomatic area and Bahrain Bay in Manama. The 19-storey hotel offers 164 luxuriously appointed guest rooms, an onsite fitness centre with 24-hour gymnasium and lap pool, and state-of-the-art business facilities. With entertainment front of mind, Park Regis Lotus Hotel boasts an array of premium onsite restaurant and bar options including buffet breakfast and casual dining, a patisserie and tearoom, and a roof top café. Simon Wan, President & Director, StayWell Holdings, said, “Alongside our parent company, Prince Hotels & Resorts, StayWell Holdings is in the midst of an exciting rapid development programme with plans to expand both brands internationally, with a current focus on the Middle East. Opening the Park Regis Lotus Hotel in Bahrain is an exciting achievement for StayWell to further cement its Park Regis brand in the region, with two Park Regis hotels already operating in Dubai and a further two under development for the Middle East”

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Royal Jordanian partners with Tanasuk to enhance website performance

RJ's homepage

The recent partnership between Royal Jordanian (RJ) and Tanasuk Technologies is based on producing an unprecedented performance-based enhancement on RJ’s site. Phase 1, which lasted for 10 weeks, saw a complete migration from Royal Jordanian’s previous content management system to the new and improved Sitecore Experience platform. RJ can now satisfy its customers with many flexible online touch-points. Additionally, it integrates extremely well with RJ’s marketing and digital tools, enabling customers to access an advanced website. So far, the Tanasuk team migrated over 200 pages across six different languages on RJ’s website. The next phase will consist of a complete data migration process, whereby all of RJ’s historical data from various sources and platforms will be consolidated and migrated using different Sitecore omnichannel experiences. Stefan Pichler, President/CEO, RJ said, “We are glad to work with Tanasuk Technologies which provides us with this highly customisable platform that helps RJ achieve its short- and long-term future plans to adopt a dynamic Content Management System, while integrating powerful tools, being in sync with IATA’s standards and systems.” leath Arensen, Founder, Tanasuk said, “As the first Jordanian entity to implement Sitecore, RJ is leading the way in digital transformation.Working closely with the RJ team just confirmed to us how committed they are to their customers—being one of them myself!.”

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Sharjah Tourism to showcase offerings at MITT 2018

HE Khalid Jasim Midfa

The Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) is all set for its 19th participation at the Moscow International Travel and Tourism Exhibition (MITT) in a bid to promote Sharjah’s top tourist spots, attract more international visitors, and join the world’s leading tourism and hospitality events. Running from March 13 to 15, 2018, the 25th edition of MITT will provide SCTDA with a global platform to highlight the emirate’s promotional plans to enhance its position as a leading family tourist destination and attract 10 million tourists by 2021 based on the objective of Sharjah Tourism Vision 2021. SCTDA’s presence in the exhibition signifies its full commitment to collaborate with industry pioneers and investors from Europe and 80 other top-notch international touristic destinations. H.E. Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman, SCTDA, will lead the participating delegates. Commenting on the participation, Al Midfa said, “In 2017, local hotels welcomed a total of 266,086 Russian guests compared with 112,171 visitors received in 2016. The numbers represented an impressive growth rate of 137 per cent. Our 19th participation in MITT is another opportunity to enhance the emirate’s presence in Russia, one of Sharjah’s largest source markets.”

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Atlantis launches resort worth $1.6 billion in China

Ambassador Lagoon

Atlantis Sanya, the flagship resort on Hainan Island, opened its doors in time for Chinese New Year and welcomed its first guests. Located on the Haitang Bay National Coast, Atlantis Sanya is the first Atlantis resort in China, joining the flagship Atlantis, The Palm in Dubai as well as The Royal Atlantis Resort & Residences in Dubai and Atlantis, Ko Olina in Hawaii, both currently in development. Serge Zaalof, Chief Operating Officer, Atlantis Resorts & Residences comments, “The Atlantis brand is known for unique, ocean-themed destinations offering a wide variety of entertainment experiences and Atlantis Sanya is no exception. The owner, Fosun International, is an incredible partner and together we have created a resort that offers unprecedented experiences to its guests.” “Following an intense development period by a team of approximately 3,000 colleagues, we are proud to introduce Atlantis Sanya to our guests. When you combine 1,314 guestrooms including 154 suites, five of which are underwater suites, impeccable design from talents like Jeffrey Beers International and Hirsch Bedner Associates Design, and an incredible water adventure at Aquaventure Waterpark, we know we are giving people unparalleled experiences to Hainan Island and China, that only Atlantis can deliver”, adds Heiko Schreiner, Managing Director, Atlantis Sanya.”

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