Tag Archives: Oman

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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Salalah Rotana renews deal with European tour operator Itaka

Itaka

Salalah Rotana, a five-star hotel in Oman renewed its partnership deal with Polish tour operator Itaka. The deal directly complements the government’s effort in promoting Oman as a destination of choice to travellers. The renewed partnership will see 180 guests arrive weekly to the resort. Hossam Kamal, General Manager, Salalah Rotana Resort, said, “The renewal of our partnership signifies the success of our journey with Itaka. We pride ourselves in the level of service provided by our colleagues and achieving high guest satisfaction. The Sultanate’s appeal in terms of safety, political stability and unique tourism offering continues to be an attraction for travellers to Oman. Piotr Wrzesniewski, Charter Produce Director, Itaka said “Our journey with Salalah Rotana has been a very rewarding one. The resort has been a great holiday destination to our guests with exceptional service. Oman has gained popularity in the Polish market and it is our pleasure to facilitate the movement of our guests to Oman’’.

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Over 230 customers attend Travelport MESA Conference in Oman

Travelport

Travelport hosted a two-day conference to provide insight into emerging new trends in the market and future of the sector with AI technology at Shangri-La, Oman. Over 230 customers from 14 countries attended the event. Kathryn Wallington, Country Manager, UAE Travelport welcomed the guests and explained the interactive opportunities at the conference. In his opening remarks, Matthew Powell, Managing Director, Middle East and South Asia, Travelport explained that Travelport had transformed from a regular GDS to a travel commerce and distribution platform to enable more opportunities in their portfolio. He reiterated how their platform enabled travel providers and their evolving technologies to deliver relevant content for travel buyers and consumers. He also spoke of how the platform provided new tools and solutions to customers and created a frictionless path to work with speed and accuracy, automated operations and the latest B2B travel payments. He reiterated that there was an expected opportunity of $8.6 billion in mobile travel sales in Middle East and India by 2022.

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MITT continues its growth story; partners with Travelport

Travelport image

Travelport recently announced a multi-year agreement with Mezoon International Travel & Tours (MITT), an affiliate of BCD Travel and one of the largest travel agencies in the Sultanate of Oman. With this agreement, MITT will have access to Travelport’s unrivalled travel content and benefit from its intelligent, fast and accurate search and booking facility to offer its customers information of more than 400 airlines, including low-cost and network carriers, more than 650,000 hotel properties and more than 37,000 car rental locations around the world. MITT can also take advantage of Travelport Smartpoint as its agency desktop to search beyond rates and availability to book a more personalised and tailored travel for its customers, work smarter and subsequently, increase revenues. Riyaz Kuttery, Chief Operating Officer, MITT, commented, “We are delighted by this agreement and look forward to benefitting from Travelport’s content and merchandising capabilities. Travellers have been increasingly expecting more choice and personalization when booking travel and Travelport’s customer-centric technology will enable us to deliver better quality service as well as give our business a continuing opportunity to grow.” Matt Powell, Managing Director, Middle East and South Asia, Travelport, added, “Travelport welcomes one of the Middle East’s leading travel agencies as our newest partner in the region. To maintain their leadership in today’s competitive world of travel, Mezoon needs access to both extensive global travel choice as well as the very best travel booking technology, and this has remained our focus and an area in which we have continued to invest and lead.”

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Oman Air increases weekly capacity to India

Oman Air image

Oman Air, the national carrier of the Sultanate of Oman is growing its capacity to India whereby it will increase its weekly frequencies from 126 to 161 flights per week between Oman and its 11 destinations in India. Effective February onward, Bombay, Delhi, Calicut and Hyderabad will be operated with 21 weekly flights each, and Lucknow with 14 weekly flights. The growth in capacity follows the recently signed agreement between the Governments of Oman and India, where both sides agreed to increase the weekly seats. Chief Executive Officer of Oman Air, Paul Gregorowitsch, commented: “India is a key destination for Oman Air and we are delighted to be offering thousands more guests the opportunity to travel between Oman and India (and beyond). The demand for all 11 of our Indian destinations has always been high and the increased frequencies offer yet more choice and convenience to our guests. Oman Air first launched flights to India in the 1990s and the demand for seats has grown exponentially amongst both business and leisure travellers, not only increasing tourism traffic and revenue but also promoting vital trade agreements between the two countries. The extended traffic entitlements will give a further boost to the tourism sector, prompting many discerning tourists to visit magnificent Oman as well as India’s beautiful touristic spots. The bilateral trade and investment opportunities between the two countries are even further encouraged. This growing commitment in India is part of Oman Air’s ambitious and dynamic programme of fleet and network expansion. This has included the delivery of new aircraft and the introduction of a range of exciting new destinations and new products and services which contribute to a seamless passenger experience. …

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Action Hotels opens third property in Oman

Front exterior

Action Hotels has announced the formal opening of its third hotel in Oman, Mercure Sohar. The 151-bedroom freehold hotel, located in the heart of Sohar, is Action’s ninth collaboration with AccorHotels and the first Mercure-branded property in the portfolio. The hotel welcomed its first paying guests on December 1, 2016 and early business enquiries have been encouraging. Mercure Sohar brings Action Hotels’ portfolio to 12 operational hotels and 2,181 rooms in six countries with the total pipeline set to take Action to 3,000 rooms by 2017.

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Air Canada taps new markets in the Middle East

air-canada

Air Canada is expanding its reach within the Middle East and aims to tap new markets such as Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Oman. The only four star international network carrier in North America, Air Canada celebrated one year of their operations in Dubai recently in the presence of Margaret Skinner, Director Sales EMEAI, Air Canada. Skinner says that the Dreamliner is a game changer for them, but now they have upgraded it to a Boeing 777 for the convenience of the passengers travelling from Dubai – Toronto route and vice versa. Deepu Cyriac, Country Manager for UAE/GCC, Air Canada, stated that they recently opened BSP in Kuwait. They are further expanding their services to have SPA partnerships with Qatar Airways, Kuwait Airways, Oman Air and Saudi Arabian Airline to travel via Dubai and London to more destinations in Canada. This flexibility has seen a very good growth from the region. They are currently serving a very good mix of markets around the region.

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VFS launches France Visa Application Centre in Muscat

VFS GLOBAL

Residents of the Sultanate of Oman can now apply for visas to France at the visa application centre launched for the Embassy of France in the capital city of Muscat. Applicants can visit VFS Global’s centre to submit visa applications and enrol for biometrics. The Muscat centre is conveniently located in main city centre at Level 1, Tilal Office, Muscat Grand Mall, Dohat Al Adab Street, Al Khuwair, Muscat, Sultanate of Oman. Services at the centre commenced on 08 November 2016. With France being a popular tourist destination with Omanis, the launch of this new centre will bring added convenience and ease to applicants through quicker and more streamlined application processes. Furthermore, the new centre joins 5 other client governments served at the same premises, making it more convenient for travellers planning multiple business or leisure trips abroad. The Sultanate of Oman is the fourth country in the Middle East, after Saudi Arabia, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, from where applicants can apply for a visa to France. Since commencing visa processing operations in the Sultanate of Oman in 2005, VFS Global now serves 9 client governments in the country. VFS Global has been serving the Government of France since 2004, and currently serves the client in 15 countries from 52 visa application centres globally. Some of the key features of the centre include: Convenient and centrally-accessed location, professional staff with local language capability to handle queries and applications, well-appointed centre for enhanced comfort of applicants, automated queue governance for smooth flow of applicants, dedicated website for easy access to information including visa categories, requirements, check-list and applicable fees, 100% secure handling of passports, documents and personal information, door-step delivery of …

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Bank Muscat joins hands with Oman Tourism

Bank Muscat

Bank Muscat, the flagship financial services provider in the Sultanate, in association with the Ministry of Tourism is hosting Sheikh Majed Al Sabah, renowned social media personality, on a unique ‘Discover Oman’ programme. During the week-long stay, Sheikh Majed will explore Oman to discover the country’s well-kept secrets covering natural attractions, vibrant heritage and culture. Sheikh Majed has over six million followers on social media such as Snapchat, Twitter and Instagram. He travels widely and engages in open communication with people through social media posts to highlight unique Arab traditions and values as well as remarkable social and economic developments across the world. The bank hosted a grand reception in honour of Sheikh Majed at the head office, attended by dignitaries led by H.E Maitha al Mahrouqi, Under-Secretary at the Ministry of Tourism, senior Management Team of the bank, social media enthusiasts and bloggers. The event evocatively showcased the country’s rick folklore music, traditional crafts and costumes, offering the opportunity for Sheikh Majed to interact with veteran craftsmen pursuing some of the country’s popular traditional crafts. Popular fashion designers engaged in designing traditional costumes for men and women also presented their latest offerings at the event. In his characteristic vibrant style, Shaikh Majed utilised the opportunity to whip up an air of friendship and bonhomie.

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