Tag Archives: Riyadh

VFS Global opens three visa application centres in Saudi Arabia for visas to Ireland

Ireland VAC launch

Citizens and expatriate residents of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia can apply for visas to Ireland at the new visa application centres jointly launched by the Embassy of Ireland in Saudi Arabia and VFS Global. With the launch of three new centres in Riyadh, Al Khobar and Jeddah, applicants can submit their visa applications at the VFS Global centres without having to visit the Embassy of Ireland. The new centres provide outbound travellers from Riyadh, Al Khobar and Jeddah a very convenient visa application platform, ensuring enhanced quality of services and seamless procedures. During the official inauguration event of the Visa Application Centre in Riyadh, Ambassador of Ireland to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, said, “We are pleased to announce an extended partnership with VFS Global to open new centers to provide seamless visa application services to a greater number of travelers from Saudi Arabia. Ireland is recognised the world over for the hospitality of its people, its beautiful landscape and its cultural richness.With opening of these new centers we welcome travellers from Saudi Arabia to experience the beauty and hospitality of Ireland.” Visitors from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia account for approximately 33% of all visitors from the Middle East to Ireland. In 2018, approximately 6000 visitors travelled to Ireland from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. VFS Global has been associated with the Client Government of Ireland since 2004 and presently serves applicants through a network of 60 Visa Application Centers across 17 countries including Hong Kong, India, Russia, Turkey and United Arab Emirates, amongst others. Commenting on the launch of three new centers for visas to Ireland, Vinay Malhotra, Regional Group COO for Middle East, South Asia & …

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Emirates introduces Airbus A380 service to Riyadh

Emirates Boeing 777-300ER

Emirates will be providing more options for its customers in Riyadh with the introduction of the first scheduled Airbus A380 service to the capital city, effective from April 21, 2019. Riyadh will be the 51st destination to join the Emirates A380 network. Flight EK 817/818, currently operated by a Boeing 777-300ER, will now be operated by the iconic and highly popular Emirates A380. The Emirates A380 aircraft will be operating on the route five times a week. Emirates flight EK 817 will depart Dubai at 18:50hrs, arriving in Riyadh at 19:35hrs. The return flight EK 818 leaves Riyadh at 21:25hrs, arriving in Dubai at 00:35hrs the next day. The deployment of the iconic double-decker aircraft will offer business and leisure travellers from Riyadh even more connection opportunities for a seamless ‘all A380’ journey to business hubs such as New York, London and Hong Kong as well a leisure centres like Mauritius and Barcelona. Adil Al Ghaith, Senior Vice President Commercial Operations Gulf, Middle East & Iran, said, “With the introduction of a regularly scheduled A380 service to Riyadh, Emirates is once again reaffirming its ongoing commitment to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia by catering to growing passenger demand.  This A380 service complements the newly introduced Game Changer Boeing 777-300ER on the route, which means that customers travelling to and from Riyadh can enjoy our latest flagship products. The introduction of the A380 to Riyadh also supports Saudi Vision 2030 by helping to grow the Kingdom’s aviation sector through stimulating robust traffic growth, increasing connectivity and deepening its global footprint.” The Emirates A380 aircraft that will serve the Dubai-Riyadh route will be set  in a three-class configuration, with 429 spacious seats …

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Philippine Tourism to host road shows in Kuwait and Riyadh

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As summer approaches, more travellers from the Middle East will be on the look-out for new destinations to discover. This year Philippine tourism board representatives will host two road shows in Kuwait and Riyadh. The first road show will take place in Kuwait on March 24 at JW Marriott Hotel Kuwait from 6 to 10 pm and expects many leading agents to be there. The next road show will take place in Riyadh on March 26, 2019, at Faisalaih hotel from 6 to 10 pm.

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Philippines to organise roadshows in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia

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The board representatives of Department of Tourism (DOT), Philippines are set to host roadshows in Kuwait city and Riyadh. The roadshow in Kuwait will be held on March 24 at JW Marriott Hotel Kuwait while the one in Riyadh will be held on March 26, 2019 at Faisalaih Hotel. Leading agents from the cities are expected to participate at the event. The objective is to showcase new destinations for the Middle Eastern travellers.

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Emirates inks codeshare with China Southern Airlines to expand network in China

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Emirates and China Southern Airlines have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to progress on a comprehensive reciprocal codeshare agreement, which is set to open up new destinations for passengers travelling between China, Middle East and Africa. The partnership with the Guangzhou-based carrier also allows Emirates’ passengers to enjoy seamless connectivity on domestic flights within China, adding eight new destinations to its global network. The Chinese cities covered by the codeshare agreement include Fuzhou, Chongqing, Kunming, Qingdao, Xiamen, Chengdu, Nanjing and Xi ‘an during the initial phase of the partnership, subject to necessary government approvals. Passengers travelling from China will have more choice and travel seamlessly with minimum connection times when flying to destinations in Emirates’ Middle East network such as Riyadh, Jeddah, Dammam, Muscat, Kuwait and Cairo. The codeshare agreement also includes flights to African destinations such as Seychelles and Lagos, operated by Emirates. With the UAE’s visa-free policy for Chinese visitors, passengers can also enjoy hassle-free stopovers in Dubai and experience what the city has to offer before flying to their final destinations. The codeshare partnership will provide customers with the simplicity of purchasing connecting flights using one reservation and a smooth ticketing, check-in, boarding and baggage check experience during the entire journey. “We’re pleased to establish a partnership with China Southern Airlines, allowing Emirates’ customers to benefit from increased choice, flexibility and ease of connection to different cities across China’s provinces, by connecting in Guangzhou. The addition of the eight domestic routes in the initial stage expands our reach in China, beyond the three Chinese hub cities of Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou,” said Adnan Kazim, Divisional Senior Vice President of Strategic Planning, Revenue Optimisation & Aeropolitical Affairs, …

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2nd Saudi Maritime Congress to be held on March 11 and 12 in Riyadh

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Saudi Arabia’s maritime sector is set to receive an allocation of SAR 33 billion (USD 8.8 billion) for the energy, industry, mining and logistics sectors, according to its recently announced budget for 2019. The 2nd Saudi Maritime Congress, to be held on March 11 and 12 at the Four Seasons Hotel Riyadh, Kingdom Centre, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, will examine these budgetary implications on this sector, focus on the growth of intra-regional trade and the booming north-south network, analyse the changing regulatory environment and study existing project opportunities. Held under the patronage of the Saudi Ports Authority (MAWANI) and in partnership with Bahri, the event is expected to set new trends in the shipping and logistics industry, providing extraordinary insights into the country’s ambitious growth agenda and consolidate Saudi Arabia’s position as a global trading hub and a strategic gateway to Asia, Africa and Europe. Chris Hayman, Chairman, Seatrade, said: “We are pleased to organise the Saudi Maritime Congress for the second time, following the great success of the first edition in 2014. Against the background of global change, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 plan is set to transform the Saudi economy, with massive consequences for its maritime and logistics sectors. This event will provide a unique opportunity to see at first hand the scale and nature of the developments which are now unfolding in the Kingdom, as it consolidates its role as a major industry player and as a global logistics hub.”

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Citymax ventures into KSA; first hotel to open in Riyadh by mid- 2019

Riyadh-Signing (L_ Two representatives of Crown Garden Company for Catering LLC, Sanjay Dube - CEO, Landmark Hospitality, Aly Shariff - COO, Citymax Hotels

Citymax Hotels from Landmark Group is set to open its first property in the Olaya district of Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia by mid 2019. Citymax Hotel Riyadh is the brand’s first hotel in KSA and the second to open outside the UAE. The opening comes at a time when mid-market hotels are on the rise and are poised to provide continued competition to the luxury hotel segment, by offering rooms with contemporary amenities at competitive rates. The three-star property will offer 65 rooms, as well as an all-day dining restaurant, Citycafé and a Lavazza coffee shop. Other facilities include meeting rooms and a fully-equipped gym and sauna. With long-stay guests identified as a key audience for the property, Citymax Riyadh will cater to both business and leisure travellers. The hotel is close to many local attractions, including Kingdom Towers, the Ministry of Interior and Al Faisaliah Mall. Aly Shariff, Chief Operating Officer, Citymax Hotels, said, “Mid-tier travel as a whole is on the rise, which puts us in a favourable position as the demand is certainly growing. This is especially true in Saudi Arabia, as the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 to drive economic diversification has had a major impact on the hospitality industry.”

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Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea Project to attract one million visitors

The Red Sea Project - [Photo courtesy Saudi Press Agency (SPA)]_1544703854

One of the most important projects that will position the Saudi Arabia Kingdom on the global tourism map, eventually creating 70,000 jobs, growing GDP by SAR 22 billion and attracting one million visitors per year is on track towards completing its first phase by 2022. A delegation from the Red Sea Development Company, led by chief executive John Pagano, was received by King Salman bin Abdulaziz at Araqa Palace in Riyadh recently. Underlining its economic and development goals and the project’s objective to become a global destination for luxury tourism, Pagano made a visual presentation at the palace on the master plan of the Red Sea Project. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Chairman of the company, was also present. As part of the project that is expected to create an estimated 70,000 jobs, 22 islands on the Red Sea will be developed. It will not just contribute SAR 22 billion to Saudi Arabia’s GDP, but play a major role in the Kingdom’s economic-diversification drive – a chief objective of Vision 2030 – by attracting approximately one million tourists per year. The first phase of the project, scheduled to be completed in 2022, will include an airport, marinas, residential properties, recreational facilities and up to 3,000 hotel rooms. King Salman lauded the delegates for planning a project that will propel Saudi Arabia to a prominent position on the global tourism map and create investment opportunities for the Saudi Arabian private sector – while simultaneously preserving the nation’s cultural and environmental heritage.

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Nofa Resort opens in Riyadh

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Radisson Collection has announced opening of Nofa Resort with 57 luxurious bungalows and villas overlooking Nofa Wildlife Park. Located 1.5 hours’ drive away from Riyadh’s King Khalid International Airport, the Nofa Resort Riyadh is nestled in golden sand dunes and majestic mountains. The leisure activities include an equestrian resort that features a show-jumping arena, a specialised race track, a polo field, am 18-hole course and an extensive stable complex. The hotel features three on-site restaurants- the Tswalu restaurant with its African-style interiors, serving international cuisine for breakfast, lunch and dinner; the Butcher’s Den provides an upscale culinary experience – featuring grilled specialties, outdoor terrace seating and stunning lake views and the Al Fresco restaurant serving Italian classics (including stone-fired pizzas) for a more relaxed and informal dining experience. Guests can also enjoy exotic vibes in the Hookah Lounge, a charming tea experience in the African Tea Room, or relax by the pool with fresh juice at Al Fresco Café.

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GCC Board of Directors Institute announces 6th Chairman Summit in Riyadh

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The GCC Board of Directors Institute (GCC BDI) has announced the 6th Annual Chairman Summit in Riyadh on November 26, that is expected to draw the participation of influential chairmen, board directors and C-suite executives to debate on a wide range of topics. Titled ‘Digital Disruption and the Fourth Industrial Revolution – Are boards ready?’, the summit will look into board strategies on digital transformation and the skill sets required to fully embrace disruptive technologies, as well as cyber security advice, best-practices in IT governance and how Blockchain technology and AI will transform business processes. The summit will be opened by His Excellency Eng Abdullah Al-Swaha, Minister of Communication and Information Technology, Saudi Arabia, with welcome remarks given by Mohammed Al-Shroogi, Chairman, GCC BDI, as well as Dr Abdul-Rahman bin Saad Al-Jadhai, Chief Executive Officer, Elm. Other guest speakers will include renowned serial entrepreneur James Bilefield, Lino Cattaruzzi, Managing Director- MENA, Google; Ihab Foudeh, General Manager- Public Sector- MENA, Microsoft; Abdulrahman Tarabzouni, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, STV; Xavi Anglada, Managing Director and Digital Lead-MENA, Accenture; Phyllis Newhouse, Chief Executive Officer, Xtreme Solutions, Dr Hans-Martin Stockmeier, Senior Partner, McKinsey & Company, Evans Munyuki, Group Chief Digital Officer, Emirates NBD; Matthew White, Head, Digital Trust and Blockchain Lead, PwC; Omar Hashem, Head of Digital and Technology at NCB; Wael Fattouh, Cybersecurity and Technology Risk Partner, PwC; Zeyad Khoshaim, Managing Partner, Khoshaim & Associates and Vinay Chandran, Digital Partner, McKinsey & Company. Jane Valls, Executive Director, GCC BDI, said, “Technological advancements continue to shift the paradigms in the business world faster than ever before. This year’s Chairman Summit has been established to identify industry trends with the help of some of …

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