Shivani DDPPL

Inmarsat and Panasonic Avionics enter into landmark strategic collaboration for commercial aviation

Inmarsat and Panasonic Avionics Corporation (Panasonic) have agreed to a strategic collaboration for an initial ten-year period that will enable airlines, aircraft manufacturers and passengers to benefit from the combined expertise of the two companies that have been at the forefront of technology and innovation for nearly four decades. Under the terms of the agreement, Inmarsat will become Panasonic’s exclusive provider of Ka-band IFC for commercial aviation and panasonic will now be able to offer Inmarsat’s high-speed, broadband connectivity service, GX Aviation, powered by Global Xpress. Panasonic will continue to invest in its own network and, with GX Aviation as a primary offering for new business, will be perfectly positioned to serve both its current and future customers. In addition, Inmarsat will now be able to offer Panasonic’s market-leading portfolio of services and NEXT solutions to Inmarsat’s commercial aviation customers. The collaboration presents a unique opportunity to leverage Inmarsat’s proven track record of high-quality and innovative global mobile connectivity, and Panasonic’s market-leading in-flight entertainment, digital services and connectivity solutions. Looking forward, Inmarsat and Panasonic will also collaborate on the development of a next generation GX Aviation terminal, as well as new connectivity-enabled services, data analytics and technology to improve overall end-to-end performance. By delivering this step-change in aviation services capability, airlines will have access to new and better solutions that address widely recognized industry challenges of capacity, coverage and compatibility. This will give greater quality, consistency of experience and more choice to airlines and their passengers in the IFC market, which by some estimates could exceed $100 billion by 2035. Rupert Pearce, Chief Executive Officer, Inmarsat, said, “Our highly complementary collaboration with Panasonic combines the unique expertise and proven capabilities …

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Etihad debuts at first China International Import Expo

Etihad Airways Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner

Etihad Aviation Group (EAG) debuts its engaging and multifunctional booth under the theme “Embracing China, Expanding Partnership” at the First China International Import Expo (CIIE) at the National Exhibition and Conventional Centre in Shanghai. The CIIE held from November 5 to 10 aimed at gathering government officials, business communities, exhibitors and professional purchasers from across the world, and providing new channels for countries and regions to do business, strengthening cooperation and promoting the prosperity of global economics and trade. According to the CIIE, about 2,800 companies from more than 130 countries and regions will showcase products to an estimated 150,000 buyers at this 6-day event. Etihad Aviation Group participated in the CIIE as an exhibitor with a dedicated stand covering more than 100 square meters at the trade in services sector in the business pavilion area. For the first time, Etihad Aviation Group exhibited its various business divisions to Chinese and international customers, including award-winning passenger and cargo services and products, state-of-the-art aviation training facilities for pilots and crew, industry-leading aircraft maintenance and engineering solutions, full event and leisure planning services by its destination management division, and much more. Tony Douglas, Chief Executive Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, said, “China is a strategically important market for Etihad. We have steadily and sustainably grown our presence in this country since we first entered the market in 2008. Currently, we operate daily flights between Abu Dhabi and China’s four main gateways – Beijing, Chengdu, Shanghai and Hong Kong – and dedicated 777 freighter services between Abu Dhabi and two key trading ports in China: Shanghai and Hong Kong.” China is the key trading partner of the UAE with non-oil trade expected to rise …

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IHG signs deal with Al-Arabiya Real Estate Company to launch Staybridge Suites in Kuwait

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IHG has signed a management agreement with the Al-Arabiya Real Estate Company, owned by The Bukhamseen Group, to launch Staybridge Suites in Kuwait. The new hotel is due to open in January 2022 and will add to IHG’s growing portfolio in the Middle East. Located in Salmiya, the 120-keys Staybridge Suites Kuwait Salmiya will offer long-stay guests a choice of one-bedroom and two-bedroom suites. The modern serviced apartments will be stylishly designed and furnished, featuring separate living and working areas, fully equipped kitchens, state-of-the-art entertainment systems and free WiFi. Guests staying at the hotel will have easy access to business areas such as downtown where major banks and financial institutions are located, as well as tourist attractions such as the Marine Museum, Shaab Leisure Centre Park and a variety of shopping malls and restaurants. With the modern-day corporate traveller in mind, Staybridge Suites Salmiya will offer facilities such as an on-site fitness centre, so that guests can maintain their exercise regimen and a swimming pool for a refreshing dip after a long day. Pascal Gauvin, Managing Director, India, Middle East & Africa, IHG said, “We are delighted to partner with Al-Arabiya Real Estate Company, owned by The Bukhamseen Group to debut Staybridge Suites in Kuwait. The Bukhamseen Group has been one of our most valued partners in the Middle East since we signed one of our first Holiday Inn hotels in the region with them more than 40 years ago. We are excited to be working even more closely together to expand our footprint in Kuwait and introduce Staybridge Suites, to cater to the demands of extended stay travellers. We look forward to opening the doors of Staybridge Suites Kuwait Salmiya …

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Embassy of Ireland opens its first visa application centre in Dubai

Ireland Dubai Inauguration Pic - 2018

The Embassy of Ireland, Abu Dhabi, has announced the opening of a visa application centre in Dubai, UAE in partnership with VFS Global. Earlier this year in June, the Embassy had opened its first-ever visa application centre in Abu Dhabi. The Dubai centre has started accepting visa applications from non-UAE Nationals who are based in the UAE and who require a visa in order to enter Ireland. In addition, they will no longer need to visit the Embassy and instead they should submit their visa applications only at the VFS Global centres in the UAE. Opening the visa application centre in Dubai, Minister Mary Mitchell O’Connor, TD Ireland, accompanied by HE Ambassador Aidan Cronin, Embassy of Ireland, Abu Dhabi said she very much welcomed the opening of the centre and that the new external visa application centre located in downtown Dubai and operated by VFS Global will provide an excellent streamlined service for the non-UAE nationals who are based in Dubai and who require a visa in order to enter Ireland. Ambassador Cronin also welcomed the opening of the centre and added that this is the second visa application centre in the UAE and the fourth outsourced processing centre for Ireland visas in the GCC. He also said that VFS Global provides a whole range of services for the customer. The centre in Dubai is located at Level 3, Falcon Phase 2, WAFI Mall, Umm Hurair 2. Visa applicants can direct their queries to the call centre number +971 4 2055912 or communicate with the centre via email at info.irelandUAE@vfshelpline.com. Details on visa application procedures can also be accessed at www.vfsglobal.com/Ireland/uae. Commenting on the new centre, Vinay Malhotra, Regional Group …

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dnata doubles operations in Canada

GTA dnata 2

GTA dnata expands operations at Toronto Pearson International Airport with the start of a new, long-term partnership with Air Transat. Starting from November, GTA dnata provides ground and passenger services to the airline, more than doubling the number of flights handled by its operations. To support the growth, GTA dnata has hired more than 200 additional staff to its team, which now consists of 450 customer-oriented aviation professionals. Mario D’Urso, Chairman, GTA dnata, said, “We are proud to have been selected the ground handling partner of Air Transat at Toronto Pearson International Airport. This long-term contract is a vote of confidence in our quality services and we look forward to supporting the extensive operations of Canada’s largest leisure carrier. It is our aim to exceed our customers’ expectations, and we will continue to work hard to deliver excellent service for all our airline partners in Toronto with our expanded team.” dnata entered the Canadian market by establishing GTA dnata through the acquisition of 50 per cent stake in GTA Aviation’s cargo and ground-handling operations at Toronto Pearson International Airport in 2016. GTA dnata now serves 12 airlines in Toronto, assisting 4,800 passengers and moving two tons of cargo every day. Underlining its commitment to the Canadian aviation market, dnata will also establish flight-catering operations and open a new, state-of-the art facility in Vancouver in January 2019.

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Lemon Tree Hotels signs first hotel in Dubai

Lemon Tree signing pix 2_4x3

Lemon Tree Hotels has announced its latest signing for the first Lemon Tree Hotel in Dubai. The hotel owned by Al Waleed Real Estate LLC is expected to launch in the third quarter of the coming year. The signing of the agreement was facilitated and supported by Raine & Horne, Dubai. Located on Al Wasl Road, this will be the first mid-scale hotel in the area featuring 114 well-appointed rooms and suites, complemented by a multi-cuisine restaurant, Citrus Café, with a beautiful al fresco extension, a conference room, Tangerine, a swimming pool, a well-equipped fitness center and more. Speaking on the occasion, Rattan Keswani, Deputy Managing Director – Lemon Tree Hotels and Director – Carnation Hotels, said, “We are delighted to enter Dubai with our partners Al Waleed Real Estate LLC. This is our first hotel in the UAE, and we feel that it holds immense business potential. We have a locational advantage, with the hotel strategically situated in proximity to famous destinations like Burj Al Arab, Kite beach and the Mall of Emirates, and equidistant from Business Bay and JLT, the two major business districts of Dubai. The addition of this hotel opens a new location for the brand, thereby increasing our appeal to our existing and potential customers.” Mohammed Abdulrazzaq Abdul Aziz Al Mutawa, CEO, Al Waleed Real Estate LLC commented, “We are pleased to announce our partnership with Lemon Tree Hotels for our upcoming hotel in Dubai. There was a need for a mid-scale hotel of this calibre in this location, and we found Lemon Tree Hotels to be the best partner for the project, taking into account that India has been the largest source into Dubai, …

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Arabian Adventures invests in Italy

Arabian Adventures JPG

Arabian Adventures has signed a partnership agreement with HTMS International. Under the agreement, HTMS will promote and sell the UAE-based destination management company’s premium services in the Italian market. Arabian Adventures is the UAE’s leading destination management company. Its full service offering includes everything from personalised meet and assist services at the airport, transfers, hotel reservations, tours, event management and visa assistance. With their passion for excellence and safety, Arabian Adventures’ 450 customer-oriented team members provide best-in-class service to one million customers annually. Arabian Adventures offers its personalised services to consumers directly as well as through its extensive international partnership network. Samir Mehta, General Manager, Arabian Adventures, said, “We are delighted to increase our investment into our international operations with this strategic partnership. The announcement underlines our commitment to the Italian market, where we see excellent business opportunities and solid demand for our quality services. We look forward to welcoming more Italian travellers in the UAE with the legendary Arabian hospitality we are renowned for.” Marco Innocenti, CEO, HTMS Italy, said, “We are excited to partner with Arabian Adventures, a leading destination management company operating at one of our customers’ most preferred destinations, the UAE.” He further added, “Following the recent celebration of our 30th anniversary, this announcement marks another remarkable milestone at the end of a memorable year.”

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Emirates’ first class suite to debut on Vienna route from December 1, 2018

Business Class Cabin on Boeing 777 - 300ER (2) (1)

Emirates’ latest Boeing 777-300ER aircraft fitted with the ‘Game Changer’ First Class product will operate between Dubai and Vienna on a daily basis from December 1, 2018. Austria will be one of the first few countries in the world to be served by Emirates’ Boeing 777 aircraft with fully-enclosed private suites inspired by Mercedes-Benz. Emirates will fly to Vienna twice daily and both flights will be operated by its flagship products – the iconic A380 and Game Changer Boeing 777 product – underscoring its commitment to the market since 2004. Travelling to or from Vienna can enjoy the latest Emirates products regardless of which of the two daily flights they opt for. The new private suites offer up to 40 square feet of personal space each, laid out in a 1-1-1 configuration. The new suites were designed with customer comfort in mind as the seats recline into a fully flat bed and can be placed in a “zero-gravity” position. The aircraft also boasts the industry’s first virtual windows for suites located in the middle aisle. These virtual windows project the view from outside the aircraft using real-time camera technology. In the other suites, binoculars are available for customers who want to explore the sky outside their windows. Customers in each suite can easily communicate with the cabin crew or request for room service through a new video call function. From first class through to the business and economy class cabins, the latest Emirates 777 aircraft boasts multi-million dollar features that include newly-designed seats and upgraded inflight entertainment systems in all cabins, giving customers an unmatched travel experience regardless of which cabin they are in. It has touchscreen controls for the seat and …

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Etihad Airways to introduce economy-spaced seating

Etihad Airways - Economy Space

Etihad Airways is introducing economy space, a new seating option, across its wide-body fleet, to provide more choice to its customers on longer flights. By December 2018, the airline will have retrofitted its 10 Airbus A380s with economy space seats, which feature an increased seat pitch of up to 36 inches. The redesign increases the number of extra legroom seats in economy from 20 to 80 on this aircraft type. In addition to modifying its A380s, Etihad Airways will also have added additional economy space seats to 12 Boeing 777s and 21 Boeing 787 Dreamliners by the end of 2019, increasing the total number of extra legroom seats by 560 per cent. Families with small children, elderly travellers and those requiring wheelchair assistance can now purchase and benefit from the extra room available in economy space. Economy space complements Etihad Airways’ existing ancillary products to provide customers with greater opportunities to personalise their journey, including the neighbour-free seating option in economy and a range of ‘buy-on-board’ products. Irrespective of which seating option is selected, customers will continue to receive the Etihad’s complimentary core dining service and inflight entertainment. Jamal Ahmed Al Awadhi, Head – Guest Experience, Etihad Airways, said, “We recognise that no two travellers are alike, and today’s customers demand more choice and personalisation during their travels. In response to the popularity and demand for extra legroom seats, we have reconfigured our economy cabin to allow travellers to enhance their overall travel experience. While many airlines have been squeezing more seats into economy class, we continue to focus on providing our guests with exceptional products and services that meet and exceed the demands and budgets of different types of …

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Global Air Traffic Management Conference reveals 2020 goals

Global Air Traffic Conference 2018

The UAE has made significant achievements with recent airspace restructuring, according to speakers at Global Air Traffic Management (GATM). At the event, delegates had deleberations about achievements, challenges and opportunities the industry is facing. During  his welcome address, Ibrahim Ahli, Deputy CEO, Dubai Air Navigation Services (dans), said, “The objective for the UAE is to align its strategic plan with the global plan and methodology.” Mentioning further that Dubai International Airport is busy 24*7, he stated how many European airports are unable to achieve this due to curfews. He informed that while it presents opportunities, we must remain mindful of challenges too. He said, “Even minor routine maintenance can present challenges when you are open 24*7.” Giving the keynote address, Mohammed Al Dossari, Director, Air Navigation and Aerodromes Department, General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) discussed the need for the region to embrace the Global Air Navigation plan while expanding upon the improvement opportunities it offers for operations and how it can align with the UAE’s 2020 goals. “The UAE successfully completed phase three of the airspace restructuring project in an extremely tight time frame,” he mentioned. “This has increased the UAE airspace access and we are on track to meet our predictions for forecast capacity for 2020.” Delegates at GATM heard a real world example of how digitisation can revolutionise air traffic management, with Brett Weihart, CEO, Scandinavian Mountains Airport presenting a case study of the airport’s implementation of the first international airport in the world to be built without a traditional tower. “A traditional tower has a higher investment cost” said Weihart, “and the remote location creates its own difficulties of staff recruitment and retention.” He continued, “The benefits of …

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