Shivani DDPPL

Meeting Point Emirates’ first charter debuts on Dubai-Leipzig route

Meeting Point Emirates & FTI Germany Press conference

Meeting Point Emirates commenced its first charter flight set to fly from Leipzig to Al Maktoum International Airport (DWC) 365 days of the year, regardless of seasonality arrivals. The flight programme includes daily, year-round direct flights and departs on a weekly basis from Leipzig, Hannover, Cologne, Munich and Stuttgart. In winter, weekly flights are scheduled from Berlin and Basel, while in summer, weekly flights are scheduled from Nuremburg and Dresden. This initiative, which started on November 2, makes Dubai directly accessible from most of these cities, hence, exposing the Dubai to new potential travellers, with a market reach like never before. Khaled Jouni, CEO, Meeting Point International, said, “Adding over 100,000 arrivals per year from the German speaking market is certain to have a positive augmentation on the destination and our local hotel partners alike”. Dubai Tourism’s Saud Hareb, Market Lead for Germany, said, “Dubai has seen strong growth and enthusiasm among visitors as a safe, family-friendly destination with a variety of attractions to be enjoyed year round, from theme parks, beaches, water parks, cultural offerings, and authentic desert safari experiences.”

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One million beds made at Ibis Deira City Centre

ibis deira

AccorHotels managed Ibis Deira City Centre celebrated their one millionth made beds with a special programme titled ‘Art of housekeeping’. The housekeeping team demonstrated the way to make a bed with a special room concept kept in the lobby for five days. Any guest had the opportunity to witness or even join in making the bed. Ramesh Bappoo, General Manager, Delegate Hotels and ISS said, “We are very proud to announce Ibis Deira City Centre has achieved a million cycles of making beds. It is a milestone and we want to invite everybody to witness the art of housekeeping where they will demonstrate and allow any guest to participate in making the bed right at the lobby.”

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Second ‘Four Points’ by Sheraton in Kenya

Four Points Nairobi airport exterior

Marriot International announced the opening of its second hotel ‘Four Points by Sheraton’ in Nairobi Airport, Kenya. The all-new 172 room hotel features spacious and modern rooms including suites. Strategically situated within the main complex of the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, the hotel is within easy reach from major highways and overlooks the famous Nairobi National Park. “Four Points by Sheraton Nairobi Airport is a great addition to our East Africa portfolio and strengthens our rapidly growing presence in the region,” said Alex Kyriakidis, President and Managing Director, Middle East and Africa, Marriott International. It also offers exciting dining options including an all-day dining, a lobby café and a rooftop bar and grill, Tazama. Guests can also experience the brand’s signature Best Brews programme featuring a local craft pilsner created especially for the hotel in collaboration with the well-known Big Five Breweries.

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Over 300 travel agents attend Abu Dhabi roadshows in UK and Ireland

DEPARTMENT OF CULTURE AND TOURISM, ABU DHABI'S UK & IRELAND OFFICE ORGANISES TRADE ROADSHOW

The Department of Culture and Tourism, Abu Dhabi’s UK and Ireland office organised its annual trade roadshow in partnership with Etihad Airways. The team visited Glasgow, Manchester, London and Dublin, showcasing the destination to a total of 330 travel agents. Throughout the roadshow, agents were made aware of all the new exciting offerings in the destination, including the opening of Louvre Abu Dhabi, new hotels under construction and the packed calendar of events the emirate provided, as well as providing attendees with further destination knowledge and advice on selling packages. The UK is the leading European market and the third largest overseas market for Abu Dhabi, with 2017 arrivals (as of September) at 173,103, a 5 per cent increase compared to 2016 figures. Events kicked off in Glasgow and Manchester, where 140 agents met with stakeholders to gain knowledge about Abu Dhabi. A holiday package to Abu Dhabi was also given out at the event. Held at The Mayfair Hotel in central London, 120 agents attended to network and meet with stakeholders.

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Emirates welcomes 100th A380 to its fleet

Emirates livery flight

Emirates celebrated the milestone delivery of its 100th Airbus A380 aircraft at a special ceremony with Airbus at the manufacturer’s delivery centre in Hamburg. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al-Maktoum, Emirates’ Chairman and Chief Executive officiated the ceremony. Ahmed said, “This is a tremendous moment for Emirates, for Airbus and our many partners involved in the A380 programme. There is no doubt that the A380 has had a big positive impact on aerospace manufacturing and the broader aviation industry, supporting hundreds of thousands of jobs and stimulating innovation and new product development in many related areas such as ground handling, catering, airport facilities and cabin products, to name a few.” The unique livery will feature a customised decal of UAE’s founding father Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, marking the airline’s first initiative for the ‘Year of Zayed’, which commences in 2018, coinciding with the centennial of the birth of Zayed. A total of ten Emirates aircraft, five Airbus A380s and five Boeing 777-300ERs will carry the special livery. The aircraft will carry the distinctive decal of HH Sheikh Zayed beginning in November 2017 and throughout 2018.

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WTM kicks off in London

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The World Travel Market (WTM) London, a much awaited travel event of the year, brought together the travel fraternity from all over the globe. Key exhibitors from the region this year include Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority, Sharjah Commerce & Tourism Development Authority, Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage, Ajman Tourism Development Department, Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority, Oman Ministry of Tourism and Jordan Tourism Board. This year’s event will give ample opportunities to a range of new travel experiences and disruptive travel services as well. It will introduce some of the key components that industry specialists need to adapt so as to work towards enhancing the experiences of the many new-age travellers and millennials. More than 80 conference seminars will take place throughout the three days covering all the key sectors pertinent to the Middle East, including aviation, hotels, wedding and honeymoon, gastronomy, sports tourism, responsible tourism, digital influencers, social media and travel technology. Among other highlights is the 300-seater WTM Inspire Theatre, a taste of ILTM joined by a new Wellness & Spa section on the exhibition floor, WTM Speed Networking, and the UNWTO and WTM Ministers’ Summit.

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Abu Dhabi welcomes more than 3.5 million hotel guests in 2017

Abu_Dhabi_Skyline (640x480)

Hotel guests to all three regions of Abu Dhabi increased in total by 5 per cent in September as compared to the same month in the previous year, according to figures released by the Department of Culture and Tourism, Abu Dhabi. Increases for hotel guests have been recorded as 14 per cent in the Al Dhafra Region, 8 per cent in the Al Ain Region and 4 per cent in Abu Dhabi city with a total occupancy rate of 69 per cent. Saif Saeed Ghobash, Director General, Department of Culture and Tourism, Abu Dhabi, said, “Globally, we have invested heavily in marketing Abu Dhabi as a destination of distinction with an emphasis on its history, culture and heritage. Our strategy is to highlight Abu Dhabi as a wealth of natural and man-made attractions across all regions while providing luxurious yet affordable choices of accommodation.” While September saw a slight drop in domestic tourists into Abu Dhabi, the month was marked by a surge in Chinese hotel guests, recording an increase of 133 per cent in comparison to September 2016. India remained the largest international source market with more than 33,000 hotel guests during the month.

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Ethiopian Dreamliner’s maiden entry to Dubai

Ethiopian-Airlines-2

Ethiopian B787-9 Dreamliner made its first Middle East flight to Dubai. Passengers to Dubai enjoyed the unique features of this latest technology aircraft ahead of other major destinations in Europe, the Americas and Asia. The aircraft provides passengers extra comfort with biggest window view in the sky, more leg room, mood lighting and higher air humidity at 40, 000 feet. With its vast intra African network, unrivalled by any carrier, Ethiopian Airlines seamlessly connects passengers to/from Dubai and major cities in the Middle East to more than 55 African cities with the shortest connection time via its main hub in Addis Ababa. It was back in 1979 that Ethiopian made its maiden flight to Dubai. Currently, its operation is scheduled thrice daily and four times weekly passenger and cargo services respectively.

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Louvre Abu Dhabi launches a special membership

Louvre Abu Dhabi's plaza C Louvre Abu Dhabi, Photography Mohamed Somji

The Louvre Abu Dhabi Art Club membership programme has been opened for registration. Members will receive a range of exclusive benefits and the chance to become part of a vibrant cultural community. Throughout the year, there will be special opportunities for members and their families to enjoy exclusive enhanced experiences, events and activities, including previews of the museum’s four temporary exhibitions each year. Art Club members can visit and revisit Louvre Abu Dhabi, discovering something new each time. Options include a Member+1 package, with unlimited free access for a member and one guest, or Member+5, which includes up to five named guests. Members and their guests can also enjoy free admission to Musée du Louvre in Paris and other partner museums. Manuel Rabaté, Director of Louvre Abu Dhabi, said, “The Art Club is a platform for meaningful enrichment, discovery and new experiences. It will be a meeting place where a unique global community comes together in an atmosphere of cultural understanding and inspiration. Membership offers unparalleled access to Louvre Abu Dhabi’s exceptional collections, exhibitions, events and special programmes.”

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flydubai launches flights to 4 Russian cities

flydubai touches down in Voronezh

Dubai-based flydubai marks the start of the winter travel season in Russia with four new destinations and increased frequencies on existing routes. The airline’s first flight to Makhachkala landed on October 31 and was greeted by a traditional water cannon salute. The carrier also inaugurated flights to Voronezh, resumed services to Ufa and announced the launch of flights to Sheremetyevo International Airport in Moscow from 29 November. Jeyhun Efendi, Senior Vice President Commercial (UAE, EU, ME, CIS) at flydubai, said, “It has been seven years since flydubai entered the Russian market and we continue to expand our footprint in the country. With four additional routes and increased frequencies, we’re offering more options to explore Russia for travellers from Dubai and across our network.” These new routes, together with the increased frequencies from mid-December, will expand flydubai’s footprint in Russia to 11 points and 52 weekly flights. The carrier continues to explore new opportunities to service the market while continuing to operate direct airlinks to the remaining points in Russia including Kazan, Krasnodar, Mineralnye Vody, Moscow (Vnukovo), Rostov-on-Don, Samara and Yekaterinburg. All flights to Russia offer the option of a more personalised travel experience with flydubai’s Business Class. The premium offering provides priority check-in, comfortable spacious seating, a range of inflight entertainment, delicious meals and a dedicated 24-hour Business Team to assist with bookings and enquiries throughout the journey. Passengers can relax before the flight at flydubai’s dedicated Business Lounge in Dubai and access business lounges in Voronezh and across the airline’s growing network.

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