Shivani DDPPL

Salalah Rotana Resort adds rooms to its inventory

The five-star waterfront Salalah Rotana Resort, located on the shores of the Indian Ocean, has added an additional 22 rooms to its already existing 400 key inventory, as a response to the continuous increase in guests arrival. Following its cluster-building system, a new building housing the rooms, features two room categories. Both offer ample space and an array of in-room amenities for guests’ comfort. Premium Room as its highlight directly overlooks the Indian Ocean and offers guests majestic views of the ocean. Speaking on the new addition, Hossam Kamal, General Manager, Salalah Rotana Resort asserted, “We have watched Salalah grow as a tourist destination over the years. Notably, the increase in guests to the resort have resulted in our decision to invest in the additional inventory at our five-star resort. We pride ourselves in the quality of service offered to our diverse guests.”

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Emirates celebrates ‘Year of Zayed’ through inflight magazine

Emirates will share the legacy of the late His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan to a global audience in 2018 through its inflight magazine, Open Skies. The magazine will mark the ‘Year of Zayed’ throughout 2018 by featuring the achievements of HH Sheikh Zayed through a host of classic images and stories in honour of his memory. The magazine will dedicate pages to highlight his role in establishing the Federation as well as his local, regional and international successes. In addition, each article will also tell readers how they can explore the region and see HH Sheikh Zayed’s vision come to life. Emirates has also adorned its aircraft with a bespoke livery of the late HH Sheikh Zayed. 10 Emirates aircraft – five Airbus A380s and five Boeing 777-300ERs – will carry the special livery and travel across the Emirates network throughout 2018. The unique livery is the first time Emirates has featured a customised decal of a public figure.

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Network International strengthens hospitality payment solution capabilities

Leading payment solutions provider in the Middle East, Network International (MEA) has strengthened its product proposition to the hospitality sector following a partnership with 3C Payment, a global provider of payment solutions. Network International is the largest merchant acquirer in the UAE and the first in the region to offer hospitality merchants access to an integrated F&B solution on the 3C Integra terminal range. The company’s solution is geared to meet the specific needs of table service restaurant outlets, enabling them to recall a list of open bills by table or waiter ID. To help with large group billing, waiting staff can recall and print itemised table bills from the POS device in addition to offering split bill payments via cash or card payment, without affecting the till functionality or tip handling. Paul Clarke, Head of Product & Innovation, Network International, commented: “One of the strongest and most vibrant sectors in the UAE’s domestic market, the food and beverage industry is rapidly adapting to the digital age in which customers expect faster and seamless ways to pay. Our new solution enables customers at F&B outlets to pay faster than ever before and make it more convenient to split bills, leave tips and simply enjoy their dining experience.” Network International’s holistic solution incorporates PCI 3.x Worldline devices and 3C Payment’s Integra Pay@Table terminal solution, integrated with Oracle Hospitality Simphony, the premiere cloud and mobile hospitality management platform to create a flexible integrated payments solution with specialist functionality and reporting across multiple channels. The terminal solution is PCI (payment card industry) Point-to-Point-Encryption (P2PE) validated, providing a secure and effective solution to protect cardholder data. The solution’s universal payment gateway is able to …

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Etihad concludes successful year of giving

The Etihad Aviation Group concluded a successful year of humanitarian initiatives to mark the year of giving. One dirham from every ticket booked was donated to charity and other noble initiatives that touched the lives of those in need around the world. 2017 was officially declared as the ‘Year of Giving’ by UAE President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan. In support of this national initiative, EAG launched a strategy based on the government’s three Year of Giving pillars: Corporate Social Responsibility, Volunteering and Serving the Nation. Ray Gammell, Interim Chief Executive Officer, EAG, said, “We are proud that the EAG family worldwide so generously supported the many initiatives throughout the year. Volunteering and giving back to our community, as well as to the communities in which we operate, is an important part of the Etihad culture.” A number of activities supported Syrian refugees, including a welfare trip to Lebanon where more than 3,550 Syrian refugees received winter clothes, shoes, mattresses, dry food parcels and blankets; and a trip to the UAE-Jordan Mrajeeb Al Fhood refugee camp in Jordan where EAG staff and senior management distributed school bags, stationery sets, blankets and garments to more than 2,500 children. In Greece, vital school and home supplies were donated to more than 1,000 Syrians at the Ritsona refugee camp near Athens. The event coincided with the United Nations Universal Children’s Day and supported the global education initiative to help underprivileged students pursue their studies. The Year of Giving drive was also visible on its flagship aircraft, the Airbus A380, with all four engines of the superjumbo displaying the official Year of Giving logo to promote the national initiative overseas in …

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160-room Waldhotel Health & Medical Excellence opens doors

Five-star luxury Waldhotel Health & Medical Excellence in Lucerne, Switzerland has opened its doors within the historic Bürgenstock Hotels & Resort after an extensive regeneration programme. The 160-room Waldhotel Health and Medical joins Switzerland’s world-class collection of exclusive wellness centres, which attract more than 250,000 GCC medical tourists per year. The luxury Swiss resort offers non-invasive medical treatments, recuperation, rest and relaxation. The integrated, state-of-the-art alpine facility is an exclusive retreat for medical tourists, wellbeing enthusiasts and athletes, providing diagnostic, therapeutic and rehabilitation programmes, in addition to preventative and cosmetic treatments. Set in the luxury of the five-star Waldhotel, the holistic approach to health encompasses nutrition, exercise and rest, balanced with the healing qualities of Lake Lucerne, to create a bespoke wellness experience for each guest. With alpine air, dramatic scenery and a focus on health and nature, as well as exclusive shopping districts, it makes for a compelling proposition for a growing number of visitors from the GCC region. Switzerland is now a destination of choice for 253,919 outbound medical tourists from the GCC countries. According to the Deloitte Swiss Hospitality Study 2015, GCC health and medical tourists accrued 735,318 overnight stays in 2014, marking an increase of 23% on the previous year, with the highest number of visitors arriving from Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Swiss arrival figures received a further boost in 2017, with UAE passport holders no longer required to obtain short-stay visas – music to ears of luxury hoteliers, especially when GCC visitors spend up to $450 per day, four-times that of domestic Swiss tourists

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Over 59 mn passengers flew Emirates since Jan 2017

Emirates has carried over 59 million passengers since January 2017 to over 159 destination around the globe. The airline served over 63 million meals onboard with over 35 million pieces of baggage. Reflecting on the year, Sir Tim Clark, President, Emirates Airline, said, “Despite the ups and downs of 2017, Emirates delivered steady growth and we have come out stronger and even more resilient. Throughout the year, we challenged convention and acted nimbly to mitigate challenges and maximise opportunities. We implemented initiatives to boost revenues, trim costs, and used emerging technologies to make our business and operations more agile, without compromising on quality or service. We enter 2018 with optimism, and an unflagging drive to keep raising the bar in terms of customer experience and business performance.” They further registered over 3,600 passenger flights on average per week, or over 191,000 flights in 2017, travelling more than 886 million kilometres around the globe, which is equivalent to over 16,000 trips to Mars. Emirates grew its fleet by 21 new aircraft in 2017, with 9 A380 and 12 Boeing 777-300ER deliveries, rounding off the year with 269 aircraft, and 243 aircraft pending delivery. The airline also retired 11 aircraft over the course of the year. The airline marked 9 years of A380 operations and also celebrated its 100th A380 delivery milestone in November, strengthening Emirates’ position as the world’s largest operator of the iconic double-decker aircraft. Powering its fleet expansion and future growth, Emirates made global headlines at the Dubai Airshow when it placed a US $15.1 billion for 40 Boeing 787 Dreamliners. The order will enable the airline to maintain a young and efficient fleet, complementing its Boeing 777 and …

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Dubai Fountain to premiere with Korean pop song on Jan 16

The Dubai Fountain is set to add the Korean pop song, ‘Power’ from the popular Korean boy band EXO to its list of melodies. The song’s inauguration will take place on January 16, 2018. In addition to key media representatives from UAE, GCC, China and South Korea, influencers and fans as well as EXO members and organisers are expected to watch the premiere of the song played at the fountain. “We are thrilled that visitors to The Dubai Fountain will be entertained with EXO’s latest song. Dubai is at the crossroads of the world and it’s only fitting that a major Asian group’s music should become an integral part of one of the most visited attractions in the city.” said Issam Kazim, CEO, Dubai Tourism. Ahmad Al Falasi, Executive Director – Group Operations, Emaar Properties, said, “Our goal with The Dubai Fountain is to engage every visitor and offer them a memorable time through spectacular performances set to world-famous songs.  The rhythmic swaying of the fountain to the beats of Power will be a delight for all, especially for fans of K-Pop.”  

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Qayyem launches website for consumers in Kuwait

UAE-based business review directory and website, Qayyem Limited has launched a new website for consumers in Kuwait. Users in Kuwait can access kuwait.qayyem.com, while in the United Arab Emirates, consumers can visit www.qayyem.com. Qayyem aims to bring together the experiences of shoppers, diners, and travellers to help build a wealth of information that other users can access to inform their own buying decisions. The websites crowdsource reviews for business in all sectors including retail, travel, restaurants and more. Qayyem uses an AI spam detector as well as human review when necessary in order to ensure the legitimacy and accuracy of reviews. There are 130,000 business already registered in UAE and 10,000 businesses registered in Kuwait.

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Amadeus connects Gulf travel agents with industry players

Amadeus Gulf has launched the Amadeus Champions Club, a first platform of its kind in the region dedicated to connecting travel agents and industry players to discuss industry policies, share best practices, access market intelligence and more. Members offered a space in the club are recognised for their exceptional knowledge of history within the Gulf’s travel industry. In addition to gaining access to exclusive networking events, the programme will offer participants unique skills development opportunities, engaging with global leaders in their respective fields. Cristian Sucu, Director Operations – Amadeus Gulf, said, “Innovation is at the heart of Amadeus, driving us to create new solutions that bring our customers together for the benefit of travellers everywhere. The Amadeus Champions Club establishes a platform that has never before been available for representatives of the Gulf’s travel sector, enabling them to expand upon their knowledge and create new synergies within the travel market.” The establishment of the club within UAE reflects a shift in global economic and travel trends that has placed the Middle East at the heart of many of the world’s fastest growing markets.

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Dubai Shopping Festival kicks off on December 26

The retail calendar once again started its annual course as the Dubai Shopping Festival (DSF) kicked off on December 26, 2017. This year, DSF, Dubai’s citywide shopping extravaganza, has teamed up with five homeware stores over the next five weeks to give shoppers a chance to give their dining room, living room or bedroom a stylish new makeover. Starting with one of the largest retailers in the world, IKEA, from December 26 until January 1, for every purchase of AED 1,000 in the Dubai store, shoppers will automatically be entered into a draw to win a concept room, created specifically for DSF. The lucky winner will be announced on January 2, 2018. Another new feature this year from December 26, 2017 to February 20, 2018 is the Dubai Shopping Festival Pass which offers amazing discounts on Dubai’s top attractions and dining offers during DSF. Tourists can enjoy discounts on 61 of Dubai’s top attractions and dining outlets, including Atlantis’ Aquaventure Waterpark, Burj Khalifa, Dubai Parks and Resorts, La Perle, IMG Worlds of Adventure, Desert Safari Tours and more. Each pass comes with adult and child options for maximum savings.

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