Shivani DDPPL

Dubai launches first-ever Dubai Association Conference at WTC

2. HE Dr Abdulla Al Karam, Chairman of the Board of Directors and Direct...

The inaugural Dubai Association Conference opened on December 11 at Dubai World Trade Centre under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council. Industry leaders from around the globe attended the two-day event. The leaders of the Dubai Association Centre expressed optimism about the future for associations in the emirate. The Dubai Association Conference is being hosted by the Dubai Association Centre (DAC), a joint initiative of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) and Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC). In the opening session, His Excellency Helal Al Marri, Director General, DTCM and DWTC, and His Excellency Hamad Buamim, President and CEO, Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, discussed their vision for growing the association market community in Dubai and the wider Middle East region. The programme will focus on building the association community, skill development for association executives and sharing best practices from around the world.

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IHG expands presence in Oman with second Crowne Plaza

Crowne Plaza Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre Muscat

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) and Oman Tourism Development Company (OMRAN) announced the opening of Crowne Plaza Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre in Muscat. The newly opened hotel will be the second Crowne Plaza in the capital and the fifth in Oman, demonstrating the increasing popularity of the brand in the Sultanate. The 296-room hotel is located 10 minutes from the New Muscat International Airport and is a part of the Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre (OCEC) project. OCEC is Muscat’s state-of-the-art commercial hub for business and international events. This precinct is one of many innovative communities currently being developed that are designed to world-class standards in support of the Sultanate’s growing tourism sector. While guests will benefit from the centre’s 22,000m² of exhibition space, they will also enjoy overlooking a natural waterway and the surrounding parklands, a wadi, and a nature reserve. Crowne Plaza Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre also offers great facilities for a broad range of visitors including two pools, a children’s playground, a large fitness zone, three large meeting rooms and an independent function centre.

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China’s Ningxia woos Dubai visitors

ningxia

An introduction conference ‘Beautiful China Amazing Ningxia’ held at JW Marriott Marquise in Dubai was organised by Tourism Development Commission of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region and prepared by China Travel Service of Ningxia, representatives from Dubai Tourism Bureau, Chinese and foreign travel agencies along with news media attended the event. Qiu Weining, Senior Executive, International Operation Department, Dubai Tourism Bureau began the conference with a welcome speech. “Dubai creates as world travel destination at all times and welcomes other tourism bureaus from all over the world to promote themselves with inclusive attitude. Ningxia is a very beautiful place and worth to pay visit”, he said. Hu Ling, Vice President, Chia Association of Travel Services, Chairman of Ningxia Travel Agency Association, then delivered a speech. She said, “Ningxia with its abundant scenic spots and traditional Hui folk culture, is one of the world’s 46 best places to visit, according to The New York Times.”

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Travelport inks deal with Fiji Airways

Travelport

Travelport signed an agreement with Fiji Airways, a South Pacific airline where the former will provide the airline with a mobile application powered by its new Travelport Fusion product. Travelport Fusion is a quick-to-market mobile solution that helps airlines keep up with the rapid changes in mobile technology. The new mobile app will provide Fiji Airways with a robust tool, providing an engaging experience for travellers. It will allow Fiji Airways to fully maintain their brand identity with consistent brand experience. As part of the service and support from Travelport, Fiji Airways will also benefit from future product upgrades. Marc Cavaliere, Chief Commercial Officer, Fiji Airways, commented, “We recognise the importance of mobile engagement and being able to connect with our customers, bringing them highly relevant, personalised information and services they need, at every step of their journey. Travelport Fusion allows us to implement this mobile app rapidly.” A recent Travelport Global Digital Traveler Research report highlighted the need for a strong airline mobile app solution with findings indicating that 64 per cent of travellers in Asia Pacific look for a good digital experience while choosing an airline.

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7th Arab Aviation Summit focuses on sustainable transformation

HH_Sheikh_Ahmed

The 7th edition of Arab Aviation Summit held in Dubai was inaugurated by His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman and Chief Executive, Emirates Airline and Group. Themed on ‘Time to Transform: Addressing sustainability challenges and opportunities for the regional aviation sector”, the summit was attended by more than 200 industry participants from 15 Arab countries. Welcoming the delegates, Adel Al Ali, Arab Aviation Summit Chairperson and Group CEO, Air Arabia, said, “We gather every year to debate the ever-changing state of the aviation industry and its complexities. Arab aviation is highly affected by the evolving geo-political situation, global economy, technological developments and others. Today, we address the sustainability of our industry and the challenges and opportunities it faces in the short and long term.” The summit delineates how market forces are driving the further evolution of Arab aviation and how greater collaboration between public and private sectors can be achieved to unlock the region’s potential.

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Etihad to increase flights to Maldives

Etihad--logo

Etihad Airways is set to increase its frequency of flights to Maldives starting June 15, 2018. According to sources, four additional weekly flights will be added on the popular Abu Dhabi – Malé route, taking frequency to the Maldives to 11 services a week. The extra flights will operate year-round and provide more travel options with an early morning arrival enabling guests to maximise their stay in the Maldives. In addition to providing greater choice and flexibility for UAE and GCC residents, overall connectivity and timing options between the Maldives and key countries on Etihad Airways’ European network will be enhanced. These include the major markets of the UK, Germany, France, Italy and Russia. The expansion from the current daily operation will continue to see a two-class A320 aircraft on the route, offering 16 seats in Business Class and 120 in Economy.

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Smart services at airports in UAE

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Ahead of the International Civil Aviation Day on December 7, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority (DCAA), Chairman of Dubai Airports and Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Airline and Group stated that smart services at airports and in air navigation reflect the UAE’s commitment to ensuring safe, secure and environment-friendly aviation network. “Through efficient implementation of ICAO’s Standards and Recommended Practices, Dubai and the UAE are ensuring safe and secured air travel for passengers around the world. I consider the theme for this year, ‘Working together to ensure no country is left behind’, highly important in the light of the increasing international air transportation between states.” Maktoum said. The purpose of International Civil Aviation Day is to help generate and reinforce worldwide awareness of the importance of international civil aviation to the social and economic development of states, and of the unique role of ICAO in helping states to cooperate and realise a truly global rapid transit network at the service of all mankind.

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15 MENA airlines sign agreement with Amadeus

AACO Amadeus Partnership

A total of 15 airlines from the Middle East & North Africa (MENA) have entered into a 10-year framework agreement with Amadeus for distribution services, negotiated and led by the Arab Air Carriers Association (AACO). The airlines participating in the framework agreement to date carried 110 million passengers in 2016, meaning that these airlines will serve over 1 billion passengers during the 10-year duration of the agreement. For the participating AACO airlines, the partnership will drive economies of scale, technological efficiencies and support the airlines’ vision for distribution in the future. Abdul Wahab Teffaha, Secretary General, AACO commented, “This long-term agreement represents a landmark for a number of AACO members with a technology partner dedicated to supporting new business strategies.” Julia Sattel, Senior Vice President, Airlines, Amadeus, said, “We are proud to further deepen our partnership with AACO and its member airlines. Amadeus’ focus on innovation and technology, combined with a partnership approach were in close alignment with the requirements identified by the members of AACO’s taskforce for future distribution strategies.”

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233-key Anantara Sharjah to open in 2020

Anantara Sharjah Resort

Scheduled to open in mid-2020, the 233-key Anantara Sharjah Resort will be located on a prime beachfront location in Sharjah, approximately at a 15 minutes’ drive from Sharjah International Airport. The resort will offer a selection of accommodation options including Deluxe Rooms and Luxury Suites. Facilities will include multiple dining options with a specialty restaurant located on a pier, spa and wellness centre, a kids’ club, a swimming pool and a ballroom able to accommodate up to 540 guests for a banquet. Sharjah’s first Anantara resort marks a significant addition to the Emirate’s hospitality sector, which has seen impressive growth in recent years. The Anantara Sharjah Resort is co-owned by Basma Group and ARADA, with the latter playing a developer management role in the delivery of the property. HE Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, Chairman, Basma Group and ARADA, said: “Anantara is one of the world’s most prestigious luxury hotel brands, and this new property marks yet another hospitality milestone for Sharjah. We’re looking forward to launching the resort in 2020, and delivering on our commitment to providing exceptional new destinations to tourists.”

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Air Arabia adds Eritrea to its network

Air Arabia

Air Arabia announced Asmara as its first destination in Eritrea, starting from December 10, 2017. The flight will operate once a week on Sundays, departing Sharjah International Airport at 22:00 hours and arriving at Asmara International Airport (ASM) at 01:00 hours local time. The return flight will depart Asmara on Mondays at 01:40, landing in Sharjah on the following day at 06:20 hours local time. Air Arabia currently operates flights to 133 routes across the globe from five hubs located in the Middle East and North Africa. Adel Al Ali, Group Chief Executive Officer, Air Arabia, said “Eritrea is on the path to becoming an important market for the UAE. Through the launch of this route, we look to boost the trade and bilateral relations between the two countries, and expand our footprint in the African continent. We are excited to commence our operations to Asmara, which will provide affordable travel options to passengers travelling from Eritrea to destinations across our network and beyond.”

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