Shivani DDPPL

Qayyem launches website for consumers in Kuwait

Qayyem logo new jpg

UAE-based business review directory and website, Qayyem Limited has launched a new website for consumers in Kuwait. Users in Kuwait can access, while in the United Arab Emirates, consumers can visit 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 new logo

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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Customised deals at Mazagan Beach & Golf Resort draw GCC visitors

Mazagan Shores

Attracting a wide segment of tourist population from GCC countries, Mazagan Beach & Golf Resort has weaved several offers for GCC guests including ‘Your Holidays in Ocean View’, which starts at MAD 2650 per night; ‘Unlimited Golf Offer’ at MAD 2300 per night; ‘30 Days Advance Purchase’, which offers visitors a special 15 per cent off, ‘Family Holidays in Mazagan’ starting at MAD 1800 per night and ‘Emirates Skywards Special Offer’, which allows visitors to enjoy exclusive benefits and earn 1Miles for every $1 spent on accommodation when booked via this website or reservations call numbers. Additionally, the resort has also crafted deals for its GCC tourists including ‘Etihad Guest Members Offer’ and ‘Exclusive AlFursan members offer’. “Of the guests that visited the resort, 12 per cent were GCC visitors, who look for real, authentic experiences. At Mazagan Beach and Golf Resort, we have crafted some special offers which not only serve as an attraction for the GCC visitors, but also align with their idea of ‘memorable holiday experiences’,” said Khadija El Idrissi, Director of Communication and Public Relations, Mazagan Beach & Golf Resort.

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Sustainable festive celebrations at JA Hatta Fort Hotel

Green and sustainable festive celebrations at JA Hatta Fort Hotel (2)

JA Hatta Fort Hotel celebrated the festive season in the greenest way to raise awareness about the importance of protecting the environment. Around 275 recycled car tires have been used to build a unique Christmas tree. The tree was made up of recycled car parts, recycled timbers, LED fairy lights and a GI chain. Deborah Thomson, General Manager, JA Hatta Fort Hotel, commented, “As we continue with our holiday celebrations and enjoy the festive period, it’s important that we remember the environment around us. Our ‘very green’ tree is a small reminder to keep recycling and contributing to sustainable initiatives. It’s a fun and different way to celebrate Christmas and we look forward to welcoming all our guests to JA Hatta Fort Hotel over this joyful period.”

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Abu Dhabi witnesses 16% surge in hotel guests during November

Louvre Abu Dhabi - Photography Vartan Kelechian - 2

The opening of Louvre Abu Dhabi on Saadiyat Island and the hosting of Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix contributed to a dramatic surge in hotel guests staying in the emirate during November. The month saw a 16 per cent rise in guests in Abu Dhabi’s hotels and hotel apartments compared to the same period in 2016, according to figures released by the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi. With 4.3 million hotel guests staying in accommodation across Abu Dhabi city, Al Ain Region and Al Dhafra Region in the first 11 months of the year, the emirate has witnessed 9 per cent year-on-year growth and is on target to reach a record 4.9 million guests by the end of December. HE Saif Saeed Ghobash, Director General, Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi, said, “While November and Q4 is traditionally a strong period for us, particularly with visitors from Europe, we are encouraged by the sector’s performance during the month and the increase in hotel guests across all three regions. The opening of Louvre Abu Dhabi was a monumental event, not only for Abu Dhabi but also for the whole of the country and indeed the region, contributing enormously to our appeal as a ‘must visit’ destination.”  

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Cebu Pacific invests 4.4 million AED on high-tech airline services


Launching new customer service innovations for the holiday season, Cebu Pacific (CEB) has invested over AED 4.4 million per year over the next five years by implementing customer-facing Information and Communication Technology (ICT) solutions. These solutions are set to improve airport operations and make online booking services more convenient for passengers. Cebu’s new service called Max Airport is a digital platform that allows the airline’s Philippine airport personnel to remotely check-in passengers, assign seats, facilitate payment for baggage and other ancillary services, and even print boarding passes. The MAX Airport suite, which is installed on iPads, is now being used by CEB ground staff at the NAIA Terminals 3 and 4, in time for the expected surge of passengers during the yuletide season.

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Rwanda announces visa on arrival

Yas, Rwanda

In a move to encourage tourists to visit the destination, Rwanda has announced that any person living anywhere in the world is entitled to receive a 30 days visa on arrival for a nominal charge of US$30. “We are happy to announce that from January 1, 2018, any person living anywhere in the world is entitled to receive a 30 days for $30 on arrival visa in Rwanda. Most people don’t travel due to hassle of obtaining visa to enter a country. In terms of tourism, ease of visa actually can contribute to the revenue of the country,” stated Yasmin Amri Sued, Chargee d Affaires – Consulate of the Republic of Rwanda.

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Ascott to open two new properties in Ghana

Ascott 1 Oxford Street Accra (pending high-res image) (1)

Ascott, the world’s largest serviced residence provider, has secured two properties in Accra, Ghana. The 220-unit Ascott 1 Oxford Street Accra will open in phases from 2019, while the 40-unit Kwarleyz Residence will open in 4Q 2018. Lee Chee Koon, Chief Executive Officer, Ascott said, “We are excited to close a record year of growth for Ascott with the successful addition of Africa to Ascott’s global footprint. Ascott added 18 new cities across nine countries and secured a record of over 21,000 units in 2017. This is not only twice the increase in 2016, but also Ascott’s largest ever portfolio expansion in a single year. As these properties progressively open and stabilise, we can expect more fee income contribution to Ascott annually.

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Dubai Frame to open to public next week

dubai frame

The much-awaited Dubai Frame will be opened to the public as soon as next week. Visitors can pre-book their tour through the website or app apart from the paper tickets that will be available too. Only a specific number of people will be accepted at one time. The Dh160-million Dubai Frame will provide visitors with a 360-degree view of Dubai as they walk through a 93-metre glass bridge to see old Dubai from the north and modern Dubai from the south. The rectangular structure, consisting of two 150-metre towers, connects the past and present of Dubai. Visitors will enjoy a journey through time for only Dh50 for adults and Dh30 for children. Free tickets will be offered for children under three, people over 60 and people of determination.

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