Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Aconex inks enterprise deal with Dubai Airports

Aconex, a key provider of global platform connecting teams on construction and engineering projects, said it has signed a five-year enterprise agreement with Dubai Airports.

Under the agreement, the company will standardise on Aconex solutions to manage virtually all small to medium-sized construction projects that are integral to operations at Dubai International (DXB) and Dubai World Central (DWC).

Dubai Airports, which owns and operates the two major airports, has pursued a vision to become the world's leading airport operator.

Today, DXB is the world's number one airport for international passengers, handling over 83 million in 2016. DWC, which initiated cargo operations in 2010, is currently ranked the 19th busiest hub for international freight traffic by Airports Council International.

In line with Dubai Airports' aggressive growth plans, DXB and DWC are under constant construction.
Through 2021, Dubai Airports expects to undertake more than a hundred smaller infrastructure projects.

Throughout all projects, the normal airport operations must be maintained with minimal to no impact on passenger and cargo traffic, said a top Dubai Airports official.

The co-ordination and collaboration among many stakeholders - such as Airport Operations, Engineering Services, over 100 individual airlines, customs, immigration, police, fire, and various government bodies - is essential to on-time delivery, passenger experience and increasing airport capacity, remarked development director Lawrence Vincent-Edwards.

"The efficient transfer of project information between stakeholders is a very critical success factor for us," he stated.

"Accordingly, all stakeholders need to be in the loop to ensure operations run smoothly and passenger service is not affected," he added.

After extensive technical and commercial evaluations, Dubai Airports chose Aconex for its broad range of functionality, successful track record with capital projects of all sizes, and familiarity within the regional construction industry and, in particular, the unique project environment that is aviation, said Vincent-Edwards.

Aconex provides a neutral, project-wide collaboration platform for tendering, design reviews, document control, workflows and approvals, change management, analytics and reporting, and other core processes across the project lifecycle.

"Aconex ensures that everybody receives the information at the same time and allows us to track the receipt of information," remarked Vincent-Edwards.

"We can see where the flow of information is being held up and monitor performance such as response times for requests for information (RFIs) and document reviews," he noted.

Aconex Field helps safety and quality inspectors identify and document defects and their precise location through the capture of photos, drawings and geographical references for assignment to subcontractors.

The result is faster, more efficient defect resolution and close-out.

Henry Jones, senior VP at Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and global accounts at Aconex, said the challenge of operating airports of this size through non-stop construction requires control of all processes and data flow."

"We are pleased with the opportunity to partner with Dubai Airports in achieving this goal," he added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

UAE group in record Dubai Lagoon land aquisition deal

Schon Properties, a major UAE property developer, has announced the transfer of 2.33 million sq ft developments at Dubai Lagoon to Xanadu Real Estate Development – a landmark move in the overall development of the Dh7 billion ($1.9 billion) master-planned mixed-use project.

The move paves the way for the development of Dubai Lagoon and other projects on the same site by multiple developers, said a statement from Schon Properties.

As per the deal, Xanadu Real Estate Development – a Dubai-based private developer, will develop the residential component of Dubai Lagoon.

The transaction marks a major milestone in Dubai real estate market that will help boost investor confidence, it stated.
This deal is set to create synergies amongst developers that will help the projects to be fast-tracked for delivery before the Expo 2020 mega event.

On the major property acquisition, Schon Properties said the agreement involves the development of 2.33 million sq ft area in three phases of Dubai Lagoon, including Rowan, Lilly and, Winterberry developments.

It marks a major turning point in the history of Dubai Lagoon – which will now be developed by Xanadu Real Estate Development – a Dubai-based private developer, it added.

"This is a historic moment for all of us as well as the real estate fraternity and the deal signifies the strength of partnership in developing large projects," remarked Noorul Asif, the chief operating officer of Schon Properties.

"This historic agreement will ensure Xanadu Real Estate Development will deliver Dubai Lagoon. We are confident with Xanadu’s track record, they are the perfect partner to acquire the projects and deliver Dubai Lagoon to the buyers," he stated.

Asif pointed out that due to its close proximity to the Dubai Expo 2020 site and the new metro line – Expo Link passing by the site, the development’s market price has started to gain.

"As a result, Xanadu has decided to increase its investment to acquire the residential component of Dubai Lagoon and build the project with its own resources," he added.

The deal price remains undisclosed but marks a significant development in project execution where multiple investors and developers could join hands to develop different components of the master-planned community and hand over to the buyers in time – that will boost investor confidence in real estate.

Asif said the deal will enable Schon Properties to focus on developing iSuites – a massive home-grown hospitality portfolio that will see the development of 2,550 hotel apartments.  

"Additionally, Schon has committed its focus towards hospitality, and this further proves their commitment toward the sector," he added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

Tatweer Misr to build 1,000 hotel rooms at Egypt resort

Egypt-based property developer Tatweer Misr plans to build 1,000 new hotel rooms in IL Monte Galala, a community project inspired by the starlit mountains of Portofino in Italy, coming up at the Red Sea coastal region of Ain Sokhna, said a report.

IL Monte Galala, spanning over 2.2 million sq m lapping a pristine 1.3 km shoreline, will be home to one of the world’s foremost spas, a first-of-its-kind mountain park, 5-star luxury hotels and a stunningly conceived art zone, as well as a bustling Old Town.

The project offers a world of contemporary living options and branded residences that combine functional beachside simplicity with the highest degree of luxury, reported Amwal Al Ghad, citing a top official.

"These new hotel rooms will be executed after completing IL Monte Galala project which is set to encompass five hotels," stated Ahmed Shalaby, the managing director of Tatweer Misr.

Set over 5 different altitudes and designed with varied communities in mind, each of IL Monte Galala’s distinct zones reflect the unique character and environment of the site, setting it to become an international destination by choice, explained Shalaby.

From villas and elegantly appointed condos to cozy cabanas overlooking 45,000 sq m of crystal clear lagoons, IL Monte Galala offers a world of contemporary living options and branded residences that combine functional beachside simplicity with the highest degree of luxury, he added.

from Construction Realestate

Grohe's Blue Home wins top interior innovation award

Grohe, a leading provider of sanitary fittings and innovative water products, said it has won the Best Of The Best Iconic Award for its Grohe Blue Home water system that delivers filtered and carbonated water directly from the tap.

Awarded by the German Design Council, the Iconic Awards recognise the most innovative products across the globe and this year it was a hotly-contested affair with more entries than ever before.

Despite the stiff competition, Grohe clinched the top Interior Innovation award thanks to the ground-breaking design and features of the Grohe Blue Home.

Grohe said it was one of the four Iconic Awards won by the company and was received by Michael Seum, Grohe VP (Design) ahead of the opening of imm cologne.

On the win, Seum said: "The Iconic Awards are highly regarded within the industry, so we are honoured that the expert judging panel selected the Grohe Blue Home as the Best Of The Best."

"Grohe Blue Home is really changing the way water is delivered to consumers’ homes. It is easy to install and makes it simple for consumer to get high quality still or sparkling drinking water directly to their tap. By cutting down on bottled water consumption it also helps to reduce waste and protect our environment," he added.

According to him, the Grohe Blue Home is a water system that perfectly meets the needs of the modern home.

"It combines a tap with a cooler and an integrated filter and carbonator to deliver perfectly chilled still, medium or sparkling water directly from the tap. Thanks to its slim design it can even be fitted into small spaces," stated Seum.

"Compared to premium bottled water Grohe Blue Home cuts drinking water costs by up to 60 per cent, while total carbon emissions are reduced by about 80 per cent compared to bottled water," he added.

Grohe also won Iconic Awards in the Interior Innovation – Bathroom and Wellness category for the following products:

*Sensia Arena – Shower Toilet
The new generation of shower toilets offer ultimate freshness and meet all your needs of a perfect personal hygiene. "This is pure intelligent care," noted Seum.

*AquaSymphony – Multispray Showerhead with Light and Sound
One of the most luxurious showers in the world, AquaSymphony is a multifaceted personal spa that plays with water, creating liquid harmonies.

"It embodies the perfect fusion between latest SPA technologies and digital innovations for personal luxury every day," he noted.

*SmartControl – Shower System  
The innovative Grohe SmartControl technology lets the customers choose theirpreferred spray pattern and adjust the water flow as desired. "Operation is simple and easy for all the family - including children. That's Smart," observed Seum.

This brings Grohe’s total number of Iconic Awards for 2016 to four, recognising the range of innovative products it has brought to market, he added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

Tatweer Misr to build 1,000 hotel rooms at Egypt resort

Egypt-based property developer Tatweer Misr plans to build 1,000 new hotel rooms in IL Monte Galala, a community project inspired by the starlit mountains of Portofino in Italy, coming up at the Red Sea coastal region of Ain Sokhna, said a report.

IL Monte Galala, spanning over 2.2 million sq m lapping a pristine 1.3 km shoreline, will be home to one of the world’s foremost spas, a first-of-its-kind mountain park, 5-star luxury hotels and a stunningly conceived art zone, as well as a bustling Old Town.

The project offers a world of contemporary living options and branded residences that combine functional beachside simplicity with the highest degree of luxury, reported Amwal Al Ghad, citing a top official.

"These new hotel rooms will be executed after completing IL Monte Galala project which is set to encompass five hotels," stated Ahmed Shalaby, the managing director of Tatweer Misr.

Set over 5 different altitudes and designed with varied communities in mind, each of IL Monte Galala’s distinct zones reflect the unique character and environment of the site, setting it to become an international destination by choice, explained Shalaby.

From villas and elegantly appointed condos to cozy cabanas overlooking 45,000 sq m of crystal clear lagoons, IL Monte Galala offers a world of contemporary living options and branded residences that combine functional beachside simplicity with the highest degree of luxury, he added.

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Swisslog WDS posts solid results in Q4

Swisslog Warehouse & Distribution Solutions (WDS), a leading automation expert for robot-based and data driven intralogistics solutions, maintained its successful course in the fourth quarter and also continued its expansion into new markets.

The key highlights last year for Swisslog WDS were the big orders from around the world, a significant award, and forward-looking innovations, said a top official.

"It was the most successful year in the history of Swisslog WDS as we enjoyed substantial growth through major contracts in all regions across the globe,” remarked Dr Christian Baur, the chief operating officer of the Swisslog Group and CEO of the WDS division.

Swisslog designs, develops, and delivers automation for warehouses, and distribution centres. It also offers integrated solutions from a single source – from consulting to design, implementation and lifetime customer service.

Contract awards from Mai Dubai, Stemilt, and one major Asian customer alone generated new orders in excess of €76 million ($84.3 million) in the last three months of the year.

"Whether in the automobile or pharmaceutical industry, the food and beverage sector, e-commerce or retail: Wherever customer requirements and specialised expertise in process design are critical, Swisslog made a lasting impact in 2016 with its competence in logistics automation solutions," he added.

According to him, Swisslog posted several noteworthy orders, particularly in the fourth quarter.

The company boosted its business in the Middle East with a contract win from Mai Dubai, an up-and-coming bottled water producer in the UAE.

On the Dubai project, Dr Baur said Mai Dubai was pursuing an ambitious expansion strategy and had partnered with Swisslog on a comprehensive logistics automation project.

The €18 million project includes implementing a high-bay warehouse for raw and packaging materials as well as constructing a new high-bay warehouse for finished goods. All production and storage areas will be linked via a 1000 m electrical overhead conveyor, he explained.

Stemilt Growers, a major US fruit growing, packing and shipping company, recently decided to invest in the technology. As part of this €12 million project, Swisslog WDS Americas will be responsible for upgrading the automation in Stemilt Growers’ distribution center located in Wenatchee, Washington over the next several years.

In the final quarter of 2016, Swisslog WDS won a major contract in Asia worth €50 million, its largest by far.

"The logistics system for a major Asian corporation will be equipped with the latest software, conveyor and storage technology components and feature a fully automated storage system for pallets," he added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

Truckers DXB sets foot on a new landmark in Dubai

Food truck movement Truckers DXB and new development Marasi Business Bay have partnered to host ‘Truckers by Marasi Business Bay.’

As part of Dubai Food Festival, the foodie event will take place on March 9-11 at the new waterfront destination along the Dubai Water Canal in Business Bay.

Offering al fresco dining experience, the three-day event will feature 20 home-grown food trucks serving fusion cuisines and authentic food from all over the world. In addition to food on wheels, guests can also shop at the craft market; enjoy live performances; and participate in interactive entertainment for the whole family - from mechanical bull ride, jugglers, face painting, to kids’ cooking station and more.

The new venue which redefines Business Bay landscape is part of the 12-km mixed-use destination developed by Dubai Properties, a leading Dubai-based real estate master developer and asset manager known for renowned destinations across the Emirate.

Juma Bin Darwish, executive director Retail & Hotel Asset Management at Dubai Properties (DP) said: “Our partnership with Truckers DXB is aimed at supporting the growing food truck movement in Dubai bringing together homegrown food concepts and showcasing the skills and creativity of our local chefs and entrepreneurs. Focused on sustained value creation for the community, Marasi Business Bay is the newest waterfront destination in town where visitors and residents can gather to enjoy the best in entertainment, F&B and leisure that the city has to offer.”

Hitting the streets to park across 1km stretch waterfront promenade are: BurgerItch, Calle Tacos, Casa Latina, Chef Corner, Copperwood, Cryspes, Deli, El Greco, Frings, Gobai, Huguette & Guy, Melt, Moti Roti, Sir Loin & Sons, Sugar Rush, Tandem, Toasted, The Shebi, Woki Naki, and Yumtingz.

Alexandre Teodoresco, cultural entrepreneur and founder of TruckersDXB, said: “We continuously strive to encourage the community to support homegrown concepts. At the second season of Truckers DXB, we explore different areas in the Emirates; and our collaboration with Marasi Business Bay will help us reach more audience and provide them with an ultimate backyard party experience that Truckers DXB brings.”

Organised by events management company Core ME, Truckers by Marasi Business Bay is open to families of all ages from 4pm till 11pm and entry is free. For more information, please visit https://www.truckers.ae/ or follow us on Facebook and Instagram. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Emirates named official carrier of World Government Summit

The World Government Summit (WGS) 2017 has announced the appointment of Emirates Airline as its strategic partner for the fifth year in a row.

Emirates will be the official carrier for the delegations of the summit that convenes under the theme ‘Shaping Future Governments’ from February 12 to 14, at Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai.

Sheikh Majid Al Mualla, Divisional senior vice president of Commercial Operations Centre at Emirates Airline, said: "Emirates' partnership with the World Government Summit is a prime example of effective cooperation between the public and private sectors. We are proud to support the inspiring discussions and forward-looking initiatives of the prestigious event that aims to improve people's lives worldwide and reinforce the status of the UAE as a hub for future knowledge."

He added: “The summit is the largest global platform that convenes senior leaders, decision-makers, thinkers and innovators to build a new framework of progress and prosperity through exploring the role of future governments. This strategic partnership aligns with Emirates Airline’s objective to promote the UAE as a leading destination for talent from all over the world and contribute to the growth of the tourism sector to significantly drive economic prosperity.”

The World Government Summit 2017 will draw the participation of more than 4,000 personalities from 139 countries around the world, reflecting the leading stature of the summit on regional and international levels and the high interest from governments, global organizations, private and public sector entities, decision makers, entrepreneurs, academics and university students as well as scientists and innovators. WGS 2017 will feature 150 speakers across 114 sessions that highlight the world’s most pressing challenges and showcase best practices and cutting-edge solutions to deal with them. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Oman Air to share offices with Omantel in Duqm, Khasab

Oman Air has announced the soft opening of its retail offices within the Omantel premises in Duqm and Khasab.

The move into Omantel’s offices is expected to leverage the already existing relationship following the recently signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the two companies. The MoU enables each company to create synergies across a range of activities to promote each other’s products and services.

There will be a number of benefits to the move including Oman Air having the use of existing Omantel’s self-service kiosk machines for online check-in, co-operation on an e-commerce platform as well as overall joint marketing activities.

Oman Air offices in these locations provide the guests with full-fledged ticketing and reservation services. The airline will also co-operate with Omantel on an e-commerce platform using the existing B2B and B2C originally launched by Omantel, helping boost Oman Air’s interactions with other businesses and consumers.

As part of a progressive expansion of its services, Oman Air opened its offices with Omantel in Duqm and Khasab. The Khasab office is located in the LuLu Centre, which is in the heart of the city and the Khasab Business Area. The Duqm office, is located in the centre of Duqm town.  Oman Air staff at both offices will work in two shifts from 9am to 9pm.

Omantel has 70 retail offices in total across Oman which will be utilized for further collaboration and expansion between the two companies.- TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

First Central Hotel Suites employee gets top honour

Mais Al Temimi, guest relations officer at First Central Hotel Suites, managed by Dubai-based Central Hotels group, was named the winner of ‘Hotelier Express: Young Hotelier of the Year 2017’.

The award is designed to recognise young talent in the mid-market industry and was held last week in Dubai.
Congratulating Al Temimi, Wael El Behi, general manager of First Central Hotel Suites, said, “We are extremely proud of this achievement which reflects the culture of the team behind First Central.
Expressing her delight on winning the award, Al Temimi said: “When a guest comes to the hotel, he expects to be a VIP and wants to feel special. My strategy is to make everyone feel special. Hospitality is definitely one of the most challenging industries I have ever been in with something new to learn and experience every day – especially as a young person.”
With the focus on bringing the best out of every individual and recognising the robust multinational team at First Central Hotel Suites, El Behi added: “With her effective communication skills and conflict handling, Mais truly shines as a hidden gem and I see her as a potential candidate for middle management positions."
Featuring 524 apartments, equipped with top-notch facilities, First Central Hotel Suites is superbly located in Barsha Heights (TECOM) near Sheikh Zayed Road in close proximity to Dubai Marina, Montgomerie and Emirates Golf Clubs and Mall of the Emirates. Included in it is facilities are fabulous dining, leisure and business amenities designed to meet the needs of modern travellers. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Monday, February 27, 2017

Renewables shift 'can save GCC states $87bn'

Shifting to clean and renewable energy presents a very strong potential for oil-producing GCC countries to maintain global leadership in the energy sector despite the current market slowdown, while reaping massive savings of up to $87 billion as well as potentially reducing up to one gigaton of carbon emissions, according a new report.

‘Clean Energy in the GCC’ highlights the array of benefits for the GCC economy and the global environment if the region would focus and take advantage of the growth potential in clean and renewable energy (RE).

The report was released recently by Orient Planet Research, an Orient Planet Group venture. Scaling up renewable energy in the GCC countries would reap multiple benefits across the region, the report noted, adding what Gulf countries would stand to gain in terms of job creation, fossil fuel savings, and reduction in carbon emission, among others.

Achieving the RE plans for the region’s electricity sectors, for instance, could result in an overall savings of $55 to $87 billion, depending on oil and gas prices. Carbon emissions could also be reduced by one gigaton (Gt) by 2030, leading to an 8 per cent cut in the region’s per capita carbon footprint, it said.

The figures were based on the findings of the Abu Dhabi-based International Renewable Energy Agency (Irena), which added that as more renewable power plants are brought online every year, fossil fuel savings in the power and water sectors could peak at around 400 million barrels of oil equivalent by 2030.

In the case of Saudi Arabia, the region’s largest consumer of fossil fuels for power production, the kingdom would save around 170 million barrels of oil and gas resources by 2030, or 44 per cent of the GCC-wide savings. The Irena analysis indicates that the fulfillment of renewable energy targets can cut power sector fossil fuel consumption in Saudi Arabia by 25 per cent by 2030.

Other findings contained in the report include:
• Saudi Arabia says solar contributing 76 per cent of its sustainable energy plans by 2040, with wind at 17 per cent
• Water use could be cut by 16 per cent in the power sector in the region
• In the UAE, fuel consumption in water and power industries could be cut 50 per cent if targets are met
• Fuel use would drop 23 per cent in Saudi Arabia and 21 per cent in Kuwait

Nidal Abou Zaki, managing director, Orient Planet Group, said: “Rapid industrialisation, population growth, and an increased rate of water desalination are all contributing to burgeoning energy demand. Right now, more fossil fuels are being used to meet the rising energy requirement but there is now a growing need to transform towards a more sustainable future. The prospects are bright for GCC countries in this regard especially because the region has a strong potential to be a net exporter of electricity generated from solar power in the future. This is only one aspect which GCC governments can capitalize on moving forward.”

The development of fossil fuel reserves and their exportation has led to wide economic growth, bringing prosperity and development to the region. The GCC economies’ position in global energy markets over the past 40 years has been shaped by their role as oil and gas producers. Rapid socio-economic growth over the past decade is positioning them as one of the world’s highest growth markets.   

“However, now is the time to study and explore sustainable alternative. Pursuing renewable resources in the Gulf is highly practical as it is as richly endowed with renewable resources as it is with hydrocarbons. The region, as the report notes, boasts of abundant year-round sunshine, the space to develop large solar power plants, significant wind and geothermal resources, and biomass derived from urban waste. There is no better time to pursue clean energy than now when the industry is experiencing significant growth worldwide,” Abou Zaki added.

In terms of job creation, meanwhile, the report highlights that the estimated 5.7 million employed directly or indirectly in the global renewable energy industry in 2012 could triple by 2030, with the solar segment expecting to account for 85 per cent, followed by waste-to-energy at 14 per cent.  

The report also cited that renewable energy will help GCC countries produce 116,000 jobs annually.

Such considerable job opportunities are crucial as global economies continue to struggle with economic boom-bust cycles. Unemployment and its associated social and economic impacts remain a key concern and an instrumental driver of public policy.  Moreover, RE power generation is becoming more cost effective. Improving technology and growing competition have seen RE costs drop dramatically. In addition, solar power generation fits very well with demand patterns in a geography such as the GCC, where air conditioning dominates the electricity demand curve, the report said.

Overall, the report states that RE offers the region an important opportunity to be at the forefront of optimising clean energy to efficiently and effectively meet increasing power demand in a sustainable manner. - TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

MAG 5 PD launches Phase III of Dubai South project

UAE-based MAG 5 Property Development (MAG 5 PD) said it has launched the third phase of MAG 5 Boulevard, a first-of-its kind project coming up within the strategic Dubai South area community.

A leading property developer of luxury mid-range developments and pioneering affordable housing initiatives, MAG 5 PD said the project launch comes in response to increasing investor demand for studios and both one- and two-bedroom apartments at the community.

The MAG 5 project falls within the fully-gated Dh800 million ($218 million) MAG 5 Boulevard residential community.

It will see the addition of 270 units to the community’s existing 13 buildings, resulting in a total of 1,442 residential units. These will offer the benefits of a 24-hour, walkable community that spreads over 800,000 sq ft of land in the Dubai Greenbelt, said the statement.

The project is also situated in close proximity to schools, offices and hospitals, offering convenience alongside elegantly designed landscaping, as well as a swimming pool, jogging tracks and gardens, retail, dining and leisure outlets, outdoor leisure spaces, children’s areas, and a community centre.

Most of the development’s apartments will feature balconies and its expansive footprint will allow for ample parking. It will be handed over by the second quarter of 2019, it added.

MAG 5 Boulevard is the second project developed by the compay and is the first of its kind to be launched within the strategic Dubai South area – a key factor driving the surge in demand, said its top official.

"We have witnessed huge demand at MAG 5 Boulevard since its launch, with Phase I and II being outstandingly popular thanks to the project’s state-of-the-art design, fair pricing, high quality and strategic location in Dubai South, which situates the community at the heart of one of Dubai’s most exciting urban developments," remarked CEO Talal Moafaq Al Gaddah.

The company is offering a convenient payment plan, which reduces the risk for customers and is attracting a more seasoned and knowledgeable buyer to MAG 5 Boulevard.

The new payment plan is highly appealing for prospective buyers, offering a 50/50 structure that is designed to offer comfortable payment dates, with a year of no payments before completion of the project.

Since the development is targeted at the mid-market segment - mainly those earning between Dh15,000-30,000 a month - the unit prices start at Dh310,000 for studios, Dh410,000 for one- and Dh510,000 for two-bedroom apartments, explained Al Gaddah.

The project will be developed in phases, with Phase I and II due for completion in the fourth quarter of 2018 and the recent MAG 5 (Phase III) to be handed over by the second quarter of 2019.

"The project’s convenient payment plan and the 12 per cent expected yield for investors are also major factors driving demand and attracting a more experienced buyer to MAG 5 Boulevard," he added.

According to him, MAG 5 PD will be focusing its future efforts on luxury mid-range developments across the UAE, where they are in high demand.

"We aim to fill this gap in the real estate sector by offering high-quality, sustainable and affordable housing tailored to the needs and preferences of middle income earners. Our strategically located projects also aim to serve families, allowing them to live close to their places of work while also enjoying the quality amenities of a fully integrated modern community," he added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

Emirates REIT posts strong rental growth in 2016

Emirates REIT, the UAE’s first regulated sharia compliant real estate investment trust listed on Nasdaq Dubai and managed by Equitativa, has reported a rental income of $45.3 million for 2016, up 23 per cent over the previous year.

Emirates REIT also posted strong rental growth for the fourth quarter in 2016 which increased by 25 per cent to $13 million from the previous year's $10.4 million.

Overall, for the year ended December 31, 2016, the total property income increased 22.2 per cent to $50.7 million, said the company in a statement.

The increase in rental income was principally attributable to increased leasing at Index Tower, and the rent of the new British Columbia Canadian School, it added.

At the year-end, total occupancy across the portfolio reached 81 per cent and the weighted average lease expiry of the total portfolio was stable at 8.5 years.

The strong underlying performance over 2016 saw FFO, or funds from operations, or cash profit, increase to $11.3 million, a year-on-year increase of 37.6 per cent.

Revaluation gains over 2016 were $36.5 million and reflect an increase in contracted cash flow. They include post completion gains on Jebel Ali School and gains following the leasing of commercial floors at Index Tower.

The slowdown in revaluation gains reflects the maturing of the portfolio over time and the slowdown in the broader commercial real estate sector.

As of December 31, 2016, the Emirates REIT's total portfolio value has hit $752.7 million, thus registering a year-on-year increase of 12 per cent.

The net asset value was $1.65 per share, or $493 million, a 5 per cent increase after the dividend distributions of $0.4 cents in both January and June 2016.

In 2016, Emirates REIT completed the construction of the new Jebel Ali School campus on time and within the budget. The property, located in the Akoya development in Dubailand, saw an 18.3 percent post completion valuation gain of $12.8 million.

Following a similar model, the Emirati firm launched another school development with the British Columbia Canadian School.

The REIT acquired a leasehold plot in Dubai Investments Park and immediately leased it back to the school. Development started in September and the overall investment is estimated to be $24 million. The estimated IRR on this project is expected to exceed 12 per cent, it added.

During the latter part of 2016, the REIT Manager made progress in negotiating pre-leases on over 50 percent of the retail podium gross floor area at Index Tower. This includes competitive negotiations with anchor tenants. The remodeling and fit-out of the retail space is expected to start in Q2.

Sylvain Vieujot, the chief executive of Equitativa Dubai, the REIT manager, pointed out that the company continues to offer strong total returns despite the slower market for commercial property.

"Our FFO has grown by 38 percent demonstrating a conversion from valuation gains into actual cash flow. The efforts of the team allowed us to take advantage of the challenging environment to reduce operating costs," he noted.

"Our experience in developing schools has been very successful and we expect the REIT to continue investing in the education sector," he added.

According to him, the asset management team made good progress driving down building expenditure across the portfolio, through negotiations with existing suppliers and energy efficiency programmes.

This lead to an eight per cent relative cost reduction across the portfolio, he added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

30 German firms head to Dubai WoodShow

More than 30 German companies are participating in Dubai WoodShow to be held in Dubai from March 7 to 9 at Dubai World Trade Centre.

“Dubai WoodShow 2017 is a key platform to showcase new products, innovations and technologies governing the industry. It’s where business relationships and networks will be built that will benefit the entire wood industry for years to come,” said Dawood Al Shezawi, chairman, Strategic Marketing & Exhibitions, organisers of Dubai WoodShow.

The Middle East market for wood industry is upbeat. It was noted that the countries in the Mena region have become a major destination for European softwood lumber since mid-2000. In fact, over 10 per cent of world trade of softwood lumber in 2015 was destined for the Mena region. From 2013 to 2015, total import volumes to the Mena region were up 26 per cent, reaching over 11 million cu m in 2015, according to the latest issue of the Wood Resource Quarterly (WRQ).

“The wood industry is an important part of this region’s economy and Germany is a destination of choice for imports. We’re pleased to host the German companies at the Dubai WoodShow once again. The event will not only give them a chance to network with top industry leaders, but will also provide an opportunity discover and explore trending technologies and applications for the industry. The Dubai WoodShow will bring best practices to life, making it easier for visitors to experience the most relevant innovations for their particular needs,” added Al Shezawi.

The German wood industry is one of the world's prominent technology and innovation leaders. The country’s tradition of building, processing and refining wood dates back several hundred years. In-line with their industrious-business centred spirit, several German companies are participating in this year’s WoodShow to tap the booming Middle East market.

A report by the Federation of the German timber industry (HDH) stated that the German wood industry witnessed an increase in sales in 2016 by 2.4 per cent, up to €35 billion. Currently, 939 companies operate in the German wood industry and the industry employs 149,872 people.

The Dubai WoodShow (www.dubaiwoodshow.com) is one of the biggest events of the industry. The show is the first destination for all the international companies aiming to set up their presence in the Mena region, said the statement.

This year’s Dubai WoodShow will play host to more than 300 exhibitors from 98 countries, with displays spread across more than 15000 sq m. The number of visitors to the show is projected to reach 10,000. - TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

Centro Capital Doha gets top recognition from Booking.com

Centro Capital Doha, Rotana’s most recent addition in the Qatari capital, has received the Booking.com Guest Review Award with an average of 8.5 rating for the year 2016.

The award is a significant milestone as the hotel has not yet completed even a year of operations. The Booking.com Guest Review Award is based on a poll of hundreds of visitors who have stayed at Centro Capital Doha and experienced its restaurants and services, besides excellent facilities at this hotel.

Booking.com is considered to be one of the most important specialised global platforms in the field of online reservations. The site is available in 40 languages and provides more than one million venues in over 225 countries with millions of reviews and comments which help the users to take the correct decision before reserving. Booking.com provides the best rate ever while booking rooms, suites and furnished apartments across all levels.

"We are delighted to get a rating of 8.5 from Booking.com, the leading platform for online reservations globally, especially since the hotel hasn’t completed its first year yet. We have made a significant leap in the hospitality business in particular and tourism sector in general, and managed to meet the expectation of today’s smart travellers, who demand functionality and affordability without compromising on comfort where great care has been considered to optimise room configurations and styles including the design as well as functionality and the latest technology and in-room entertainment facilities. Moreover, Centro Capital Doha will offer two fully- equipped meeting rooms, recreational facilities including a swimming pool, a state-of-the-art gym and three F&B outlets,” said Luca Medda, general manager of Centro Capital Doha. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Dubai Food Festival comes back for new edition

Dubai Food Festival (DFF), Dubai’s annual citywide culinary celebration, returns to the city from February 23 – March 11 bigger and better than ever, offering a 17-day programme of events, activities and promotions.

The festival brings together the best of Dubai’s gastronomy offering and shines a spotlight on the range of cuisine available throughout the city, from the most elite dining experiences to hidden eateries off the beaten track. Presenting the latest food trends and concepts, where award winning fine dining can be enjoyed for an exceptional price, Dubai Food Festival offers a feast of food related events and is sure to whet the appetite of foodies across the city.

Issam Kazim, CEO, Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DCTCM), said: “We are delighted to bring Dubai Food Festival back this year, uniting people all over the city with a 17-day menu of incredible dining experiences, luxury food concepts and a flavour of local dishes. From desert dining to stunning waterside restaurants, Dubai Food Festival is a fantastic opportunity to celebrate Dubai’s rich melting pot of cuisine and put our city firmly on the global gastronomy map for the world to see.”

Among the highlights of DFF 2017 are the Etisalat Beach Canteen, Miele Dubai Restaurant Week, Dubai Hidden Gems, and the Dine & Win promotion.

Etisalat Beach Canteen
Taking up residency at its new location - Sunset Beach, the Etisalat Beach Canteen is the free-to-attend Dubai Food Festival beach club bringing people a fiesta of food, entertainment, sport, fitness and family fun throughout the festival. Four times bigger than last year, Etisalat Beach Canteen will serve as the festival hub offering visitors exciting home-grown restaurant concepts, delicious food truck dishes and unique high-end beach dining experiences. There will also be Al Islami Masterclasses featuring celebrity chefs, beach sports and children's activities.

Foodies will be able to get their taste buds on a variety of dishes, including local Emirati cuisine and an eclectic mix of food truck fare, whilst the health-conscious can take part in beach yoga classes or enjoy a delicious fruit smoothie.

The bustling, vibrant beach location will also act as the ticketing hub for the entire festival selling entrance to all key Dubai Food Festival events plus providing information on the full 17-day programme. Those who are keen to get updates on Etisalat Beach Canteen can stay tuned to Dubai Food Festival social media channels and website for the latest announcements and where to book.

Miele Dubai Restaurant Week
The culinary jewel in the crown of the festival will be the Miele Dubai Restaurant Week (MDRW), wherein 15 of Dubai’s  high-end restaurants will offer an exclusive, limited edition three-course set menu from February 23 to March 4 for a price of Dh199 ($54) per person, with booking now open through the official booking partner, RoundMenu

Highlighting the very best in Dubai’s culinary excellence, diners can indulge in unique world-class dining experiences throughout Miele Dubai Restaurant Week at some of the city’s globally-recognised venues, including Gordon Ramsay’s Bread Street Kitchen at Atlantis, The Palm, the stunning Pier Chic, and the vibrant Scape Restaurant & Bar at the Burj Al Arab. From American to Argentinian, seafood to steak, there is a whole host of cuisine from all corners of the globe for foodies to sink their teeth into.

Guests can also savour dishes created by top chefs from around the world including Jason Atherton (Marina Social), Heinz Beck (Social by Heinz Beck) and Gary Rhodes (Rhodes W1).

Those looking to enjoy the exclusive fine dining value menus on offer throughout Miele Dubai Restaurant Week can book through the RoundMenu website and app for either a 7:30pm or a 9:30pm sitting to take advantage of the offer. With restaurants set to sell out quickly, diners are encouraged to book now at https://www.roundmenu.com/dubai/restaurant-week

Dubai Hidden Gems
Take part in Dubai’s annual citywide culinary celebration by casting your votes during the ‘Dubai Hidden Gems’ campaign and unearth some of Dubai’s most popular and undiscovered restaurants.

From Egyptian to Emirati, American to Arabic, there is a veritable feast of culinary delights vying to be crowned one of Dubai’s top 10 Hidden Gems, all selected for holding a special place in the heart of Dubai residents. All of the venues shortlisted and open for public voting are local, independent, boutique eateries that offer warm service and great food.

Visit www.dubaifoodfestival.com or follow the Dubai Food Festival social media channels for further information and event updates from across the city. - TradeAraabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Kempinksi Summerland Hotel welcomes new GM

Kempinski Summerland Hotel & Resort in Beirut, Lebanon, has appointed Daniele Vastolo as its new general manager to head the hotel’s current and future ventures.

As the hotelier’s new scope of work increases, Vastolo will be responsible for supervising the entity’s minor and major projects, ensuring a quality of work that reflects the Kempinski’s premium standards.

Vastolo joins Kempinski from his most recent role as group director of operations in Nikki Beach Hotels & Resorts EMEA.  In this position he successfully opened Nikki Beach Resort & Spa, Porto Heli, Greece, followed by Nikki Beach Resort & Spa, Bodrum, Turkey and has been instrumental in the pre-opening of Nikki Beach Resort & Spa, Dubai.
He has developed a sound career with respected international hospitality groups such as Shangri- La Hotels & Resorts and Constance Hotels, and has overseen the opening and pre-opening of various prestigious and high-end destinations and Island Resorts as general manager, namely in the Seychelles, Boracay and Fiji, amongst other locations.
Throughout his experience, Vastolo has maintained a high standard of professionalism. His distinguished career includes displaying his personal involvement in every aspect for generating business. He is results-oriented and driven. He strives relentlessly for superior outcomes and continuously reviews business practices in order to improve productivity, quality and efficiency, the hotel said in a statement. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Iran-Afghanistan rail project on fast track

Work on the Iran-Afghanistan railway project is progressing at a steady pace with the network, linking the two neighbours, due for completion early next year, said a report, citing a senior official.

This comes as part of Iran's priority to link its railway system to the neighbouring countries, reported Iran Daily, citing a senior rialway official.

"Iran has extended its railways up to the Afghan border, however the remaining portion within Afghanistan is expected to be completed by 2018," Iran's deputy head for operation affairs Hossein Ashouri stated.

He said the infrastructure in Afghanistan is also ready and two railing blocks are being built in its territory, the report added.

from Construction Realestate

Oman to set up waste management projects in India

Oman-based Muscat Project and Environmental Service Company is in discussions with the South Indian state of Kerala to set up its state-of-the-art waste management projects in that state, said a report.

The eco-friendly project which has been successfully implemented in Oman is the ideal one for Kerala which is grappling with issues like pollution, usage of an overdose of pesticides in agricultural farms and water pollution, reported Times of Oman, citing a top-level Kerala official.

The prevailing waste disposal method in the sultanate is really impressive and can easily be replicated in Kerala, remarked Niyas Pulikkalakath, the chairman of Kerala’s State Industrial Development Corporation (Sidco) after a meeting with EM Badruddeen, the managing director of the Muscat Project and Environmental Service Company.

Pulikkalakathu will submit a report to the Kerala government for replicating similar projects aimed at protecting the environment, which is a major concern in Kerala, the report added.

from Construction Realestate

Bahrain Tourism celebrates Kuwait National Day

The Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (BTEA) celebrated Kuwait National Day by distributing gifts to visitors coming to Bahrain through the Bahrain International Airport and King Fahad Causeway on February 23.

The celebration was in line with enhancing the bilateral relations and strong ties between both countries under the wise leadership of His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa and His Highness the Amir of the State of Kuwait Shaikh Subah Al Ahmed Al Jaber Al Subah, hence stimulating intra-regional tourism in-line with the GCC Ministers of Tourism objectives.

“We would like to express our congratulations and good wishes to the wise leadership and the people of Kuwait on the occasion of their national day. We wish them further progress and prosperity,” said Shaikh Khalid bin Humood Al Khalifa, the chief executive of BTEA.

The Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority has developed a yearlong calendar of events and activities in line with its ongoing efforts to attract tourists to Bahrain and contribute towards the kingdoms economy and the Economic Vision. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Global Restaurant Investment Forum partners with AccorHotels

The Global Restaurant Investment Forum 2017 (GRIF), the world's leading event for the restaurant investment community, has partnered with AccorHotels for its fourth edition.

GRIF, which will be held from April 10-12 at Fairmont The Palm in Dubai, will provide a macroeconomic overview of the food and beverage industry and tackle issues such as concept development, finance and lending, investment feasibility, scaling up for sustainable growth, creating a food culture and catering to the digitally-focused customer.

The event brings together more than 300 industry professionals for interactive culinary tours, vibrant networking receptions, a franchise master class and a stimulating conference programme that gets to core of investing in the restaurant and food service industry.

Jennifer Pettinger-Haines, managing director, Middle East, Bench Events, organiser of GRIF, said: “GRIF facilitates investment decision-making within the restaurant space and showcases the hottest concepts from around the globe. When selecting our partners, we are committed to supporting companies looking to make a real impact in the industry. AccorHotels is making bold steps to revolutionise its F&B and we are excited to witness the unveiling of new concepts from the hotelier at GRIF.”

Dedicated to sharing best practice and innovative insights, the impressive line-up of speakers for the 2017 edition of GRIF includes Amir Nahai, CEO Food & Beverage, AccorHotels, who will be interviewed live on stage about the international hotelier’s F&B strategy on April 11.

Speaking ahead of the event, Nahai said: “Rethinking and redefining our food and beverage offer is a critical element of AccorHotels’ transformation and we are committed to demonstrating that hotels can be market-leaders in the restaurant business. With close to 8,000 restaurants around the world, our goal is to position our F&B offer as a truly differentiating factor for our guests, our partners and our employees.

“Our focus is on ensuring food and beverage is more localised and less commoditised,” added Nahai. “It is about creating concepts tailored to each marketplace in which we operate and developing home-grown F&B. The question we ask ourselves about every concept is, ‘does it matter to our guests?’”

The topic of restaurant conceptualisation will be an important one at GRIF 2017, where panel sessions include: What’s Hot in the Restaurant World; Creating a Food Culture; Demystifying Restaurant Development; Hotel F&B; Smart Design; and The Blueprint to Developing a Successful Concept.

Nahai added: “Our merger with FRHI Hotels & Resorts has certainly accelerated our focus on F&B and provided additional know-how, talent and systems in this specialism. It’s therefore very exciting to host GRIF at Fairmont the Palm, a hotel for which we are currently creating a very exciting new restaurant, bar and beach club concept.”
He concluded: “GRIF is one of the leading international restaurant investment conferences in the region and at AccorHotels, we are committed to furthering the development of the industry globally to meet the needs of today’s diner.”

In addition to the high-level agenda, GRIF 2017 will present the second edition of the Global Restaurant Awards, which give recognition to the businesses behind the world’s leading restaurants and brands. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Evonik opens new coating additives lab in Turkey

Germany-based Evonik, a global leader in specialty chemicals, has annouced the opening of its new coating additives laboratory at Tuzla (Istanbul) in Turkey.

The state-of-the-art laboratory, which also includes a customer service center, will support customers with the development of innovative surface coatings in Turkey and throughout the Middle East, said a statement rom the company.

According to Evonik, the application technology laboratory features top-of-the-line equipment for processing customer requests for a wide range of coatings and printing ink applications.

This allows the lab staff to effectively formulate, apply, and test a variety of coatings and printing inks in water-based, solvent-based, or radiation-curing formats.

The modern laboratory equipment also includes a spray booth and a climatic chamber, it stated.

Gaetano Blanda, the head of the Coating Additives business line, said the new laboratory strengthens the  presence of Evonik in the region.

"It enhances our market proximity and enables us to provide our customers with technical service and product solutions for the development of new formulations even faster," noted Blanda.

The German group said the new laboratory and the adjacent customer service centre have created two new jobs and are staffed by five employees total.

From its Tuzla site east of Istanbul, Evonik Ticaret will manage the distribution for the Turkish domestic market and exports to adjacent growth markets with a staff of fifty employees, it added.- TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

Ellington launches second community project in Jumeirah

UAE-based Ellington Properties, a boutique property development company, has launched Belgravia 2 in Jumeirah Village Circle (JVC), an upcoming district in Dubai increasingly popular as a residential destination of choice.  

This follows the success of Belgravia 1, which recorded sell-out response from investors of over 40 different nationalities making the community one of the most diverse in JVC, said the Dubai-based company in a statement.

Belgravia 2 is an elegant community with 188 perfectly designed units that comprise townhouses, studios, and one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments.

The community is an ideal selection for families, couples and single professionals, and reflects the lifestyle that Ellington Properties’ residents will come to enjoy and appreciate, stated the company which specialises in developing bespoke quality homes.

The public spaces feature elegant furnishings with 2D and 3D art pieces by local designers and artists. Great outdoor amenities include a large swimming pool and elegant landscaping with palm trees around the property, it added.

Five other Ellington projects have already broken ground that will add over 600 residential units across Dubai with several other future projects in the development phase marking a significant expansion of the company’s project pipeline, said a top official.

"Our home-base of Dubai has enabled us to drive our expansion plan with over a dozen projects in the pipeline," remarked Robert Booth, the managing director of Ellington Properties.

"In the run-up to Expo 2020, Dubai is attracting discerning customers who appreciate design and quality over price points. Belgravia is an example of what investors seek today," he stated.

For wellness and exercise, Belgravia 2 offers state-of-the-art fitness equipment complete with a perfect unobstructed pool view, observed Booth.

For families with children, it provides soft kids-scale furniture, fun and colourful flooring and a writeable wall surface, in addition to the fantastic outside living balcony areas spacious for social gatherings, he added.

According to him, Ellington has five other projects that have commenced construction activity this year.

"For us 2017 is set to be another milestone year with several new launches in areas such as Downtown Dubai, Business Bay, Jumeirah Village Circle and The Palm Jumeirah," he added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

Oman Air boosts fleet with new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner

Oman Air continues its ambitious expansion plans in 2017 with three new additions to the fleet already this year, including a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner which joined the fleet on February 23.

This is in addition to the two new 737-800s which were added to the fleet in 2017. The wide-body Boeing 787-9 is a stretched version of the advanced long-range twin engine B787-8.

The Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft is configured with 30 award-winning flat-bed Business Class suites, designed by BE Aerospace and 258 Economy Class seats. All classes feature the state-of-the-art Thales Integrated In-Flight Entertainment System which provides an even more enjoyable guest experience, allowing access to a wide selection of on-demand entertainment delivered through a passenger experience interface developed specifically with Oman Air.

Hunaina Sultan Al Mughairy, ambassador of Oman to the US attended the aircraft delivery ceremony at the Boeing facility in Seattle, along with Eng. Abdulaziz Al Raisi, executive vice president–Products & Brand Development on behalf of Oman Air. The aircraft’s inaugural flight departed Seattle on February 23 and arrived in Muscat on February 24, 2017.

With the addition of this latest Dreamliner, Oman Air operates five Boeing 787 Dreamliners aircraft. This aircraft will be utilised on Oman Air’s European and Far-Eastern sectors. A second new Boeing 787 Dreamliner will be joining Oman Air’s fleet in April 2017.  

The delivery of new aircraft is part of Oman Air’s ambitious and dynamic programme of fleet and network expansion. Oman Air is continuing to invest in providing guests with the best possible on board experience. To complement the new additions to the fleet, the airline has recently invested in the renovation of its three A330-300 aircraft First Class cabin.

The fleet currently consists of five Boeing 787 Dreamliners, six Airbus 330-300s, four Airbus 330-200s, five Boeing 737-900s, 25 Boeing 737-800, one Boeing 737-700 and four Embraer 175s. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

The Sun Siyam Group targets Saudi Arabian travel market

The Sun Siyam Group, supported by the Embassy of the Republic of Maldives, marked the opening of its office in Saudi Arabia recently with a fun and informative reception in the capital, Riyadh, entitled ‘A Glimpse into the Sunny Side of Life!’.

Held in the Four Points by Sheraton Hotel on February 13, dignitaries, tourism professionals and media were officially welcomed by Abdullah Hameed, ambassador of Maldives to Saudi Arabia.

The Maldives as a destination for everyone was the focus of the presentation by Evgenia Boyankova, Sun Siyam’s director of business development, who explained how the nation of islands offered something for everyone: “It’s a destination that caters to anyone who enjoys a wonderful location with great scenery, good food and luxurious villa living, whether they want to experience exciting sports, just want to relax amid the lush green foliage and endless beaches of the island.”

Mamdouh AbdulRhaman AlMallouhi, sales manager - Riyadh for Saudi Airlines, highlighted the convenient flight connections between Saudi Arabia and the Maldives, as well as sharing future plans on launching direct flights from Jeddah to the Maldives. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Dubai to start work on new Sharjah link road

Dubai's Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) is set to start work on the Dh500 million ($136 million) Tripoli Roads project, which on completion, will help ease traffic between Dubai and its neighbouring emirate Sharjah.

The contract for the 12-km stretch, that will provide a new link between Sheikh Mohammad Bin Zayed road and Emirates Road, was approved by Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, said a statement from RTA.

The project provides a parallel and supporting corridor to the Airport Road Improvement Project, which the RTA is currently implementing at a cost of Dh490 million ($133.3 million), thus taking the total cost of both projects to almost Dh1 billion ($272 million), it added.

Mattar Al Tayer, the director general and chairman of the board of executive directors at RTA said: "The project aims to enhance the link between Dubai and Sharjah besides easing traffic congestions, streamlining traffic movement and stepping up safety along this corridor."

"Upon completion, the project will act as a parallel to Al Amardi–Al Khawaneej as well as Al Awir-Ras Al Khor corridors. The new project has an intake of about 12,000 vehicles per hour in both directions (6,000 vehicles per hour per direction) and is set to ease the traffic flow on these two corridors by 30 per cent," he added.

Al Tayer said the project, which links the Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Road and Emirates Road, includes the widening of Tripoli Road over a 6.5 km stretch from the intersection with the Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Road (nearby Mirdif City Centre) up to the Academic City Road.

"The scope of work also includes the construction of a new 5.3 km road of three lanes in each direction from the intersection of the Academic City up to the Emirates Road. Thus, the overall length of the corridor is almost 12 km," he noted.

According to him, the project also covers the development of interchanges across the corridor starting with the upgrading of Tripoli-Algiers Roads junction to a tunnel of three lanes in each direction to serve the traffic flow inbound from Rabat Road heading to Tripoli Road.

Works also include upgrading the current at-grade signalised intersection. With the completion of these works, the waiting time at the existing intersection is expected to drop from three minutes to less than one minute.

The project also includes upgrading Tripoli- Nouakchott junction to a bridge of three lanes in each direction, improving the existing at-grade signalized junction, and transforming the intersection of Tripoli-Academic City Roads into a flyover to ensure a smooth traffic flow.

Al Tayer said work is progressing well on the Airport Road project with nearly 30 per cent construction already completed.

The scope of work includes construction of bridges, a tunnel at the intersection of Marrakech, and bridges at the intersection of Rashidiya as well as the intersections of the Airport Road with Casablanca Road and Nad Al Hamar Road.

"The project is part of a plan set by RTA for accommodating the projected growth in the number of passengers using the Dubai International Airport, which is expected to shoot to 92 million passengers by 2020," he added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

Bahrain tourism industry to reach $1bn by 2020

The tourism industry in Bahrain is growing rapidly and is expected to reach $1 billion by 2020, according to figures released ahead of Arabian Travel Market 2017, which takes place at the Dubai World Trade Centre this April.

Bahrain witnessed an 8.4 per cent increase in inbound traffic in the third quarter of 2016 and a peak of 1.4 million arrivals during the month of August. With the Bahrain Tourism and Exhibition Authority (BTEA) spearheading a robust marketing campaign, the kingdom expects to welcome 15.8 million annual visitors by 2018. This will represent an increase of 36.2 per cent on current figures and will place the country’s tourism industry on track to reach its $1 billion 2020 target.

Simon Press, senior exhibition director, ATM, said: “The Bahrain Tourism and Exhibition Authority has engaged with a number of public authorities and private sector organisations over recent months and the returns are beginning to be realised.

“The BTEA now operates seven official representation offices worldwide, with a focus on source markets in Europe and Asia, and will continue to work hand-in-hand with hotels, tour operators and cruise lines to achieve its objectives.”

This phenomenal growth will be driven primarily by the leisure sector, which should rise in terms of value by 4.3 per cent per annum to BD1.2 billion ($3 billion) in 2026. While business arrivals will generate BD 219.3 million ($560.7 million) per annum by 2026.
As activity continues to increase, GDP contributions from tourism will also rise, from the 10.6 per cent contribution witnessed in 2015 to a predicted 13 per cent contribution towards GDP in 2026.
The news comes as inbound investment into Bahrain’s tourism infrastructure reaches new heights. From funding totaling BD105.3 million ($269 million) in 2015 – representing 5.3 per cent of total investment that year – investment is expected to reach BD217.9 million ($557 million) in 2026, which will be 8.6 per cent of the national total.

The $1.1 billion Airport Modernisation Programme (AMP) at Bahrain International Airport will double capacity from 7 million to 14 million passengers per year, by Q2 2020.

STR Global estimates that there is currently, 12,641 rooms and a pipeline of 4,187 rooms, an increase of 33.1 per cent in hotel stock over the coming years.

Promoting its hotels, leisure attractions and investment opportunities, Bahrain will enjoy a strong presence at ATM 2017, with several exhibitors participating. These include the Kingdom of Bahrain Tourism Sector, Ministry of Culture, Sabre, Farhat International Tours & Travels WLL and the Gulf Hotel Bahrain. The country’s flagship luxury properties, such as Four Seasons Hotel Bahrain Bay and Sofitel Bahrain Zallaq Thalassa Sea & Spa, will also be represented by their respective operators.

To drive the expected demand, BTEA’s plans for 2017 include capitalising on the leisure market, particularly the heritage and cultural aspects, regenerating beaches, targeting cruise passengers, as well as the opening of Avenues Bahrain Mall.

Press added: “The main theme of this year’s ATM is experiential travel and Bahrain is a perfect example of what this sector offers, with investment set aside for the regeneration of the historic bazaar district, Manama Souq and similar projects at Bab Al Bahrain.”

ATM - considered by many industry professionals as a barometer for the Middle East and North Africa tourism sector –  witnessed a year-on-year visitor attendance increase of 9% to over 28,500 in 2016, with 2,785 exhibiting companies, signing business deals worth more than $ 2.5 billion over four days.

ATM 2017 will build on its success with the announcement of an additional hall as Reed Travel Exhibitions looks to add to its record-breaking achievements of 2016.

For more information on Arabian Travel Market 2017, please visit: www.arabiantravelmarket.wtm.com. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Second edition of Bahrain Food Festival kicks off

Bahrain Tourism & Exhibitions Authority (BTEA) launched the second edition of ‘Bahrain Food Festival’ at Bahrain Bay yesterday February 25.

The launch was held in the presence of Taleb Al Rifai, secretary-general of the United Nations World Tourism Organization, and Shaikh Khaled bin Humood Al Khalifa, the chief executive of Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority with Dr. Bandar Al Fehaid, president of the Arab Tourism Organization and, as well as authority representatives and members of the media.

The 10-day festival is considered as one of BTEA’s significant events for the year 2017 and will run for a period of 10 days until March 6 with the aim to attract food enthusiasts from the Kingdom and the neighboring GCC countries. The first edition of the ‘Bahrain Food Festival’ attracted more than 25,000 visitors last year.

The Food Festival will serve as a platform to provide participating restaurants and outlets with the opportunity to showcase their local concepts and position the kingdom as a regional culinary destination.  

More than 50 prominent outlets are taking part this year including businesses and concepts related to the food industry such as restaurants, cafes, hotels, nutrition, kitchen appliances and many more. The Bahrain Food Festival will offer visitors varied cuisines including Middle Eastern, Western, Asian, Indian, Organic, and Healthy options.

The second edition of the Bahrain Food Festival will take place in three main locations- at Bahrain Bay during weekdays from 5:00pm to 10:00pm; at Block 338 in Adliya during the weekends from 5:00pm until midnight; and at Capital Club who is hosting Latin America’s 37th Chef, Gerrado Lugo, who we will be showcasing authentic Mexican cuisine from the north and south of Mexico.

“We are delighted to launch the second edition of the Bahrain Food Festival seeing the success that the first edition received. We have ensured to host this edition in three main locations that focuses on the best touristic and food outlets to provide the opportunity to visitors to enjoy a unique culinary experience. We also hope to see an increase in the number of visitors to more than 50,000 from Bahrain and region,”said Shaikh Khaled.

Bahrain Food Festival will also offer its visitors of all ages the opportunity to enjoy the family entertainment including live cooking shows, musical shows and other entertainment. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

ART Rotana wins big with globally recognized luxury awards

ART Rotana Amwaj Islands, a luxurious property in Bahrain, recently scooped two awards at the 2016 World Luxury Hotel Awards ceremony held in Doha; Global Winner for Luxury Art Hotel and Country Winner for Luxury Design Hotel.

The hotel also bagged the Signum Virtutis, the Seal of Excellence from the 2016 Seven Stars Luxury Hospitality and Lifestyle Awards, in the Hotels & Resorts sector, for the second year consecutively, which was held in Spain.

Commenting on this achievement, general manager of ART Rotana Amwaj Islands Lilian Roger stated: “The global recognition that the hotel has received is a result of hard work by an excellent team who have dedicated themselves to place ART Rotana at the forefront.”

“We are extremely honoured and proud that ART Rotana has been recognised within the international hospitality and tourism industry as the Global Luxury Art Hotel and Country Luxury Design hotel, as well as receiving the Seal of Excellence,” he further added.

The World Luxury Hotel Awards is one of the most prestigious and celebrated award ceremonies in the world, held in recognition of the finest hotels with world class facilities and service excellence the industry has to offer.

The Seven Stars Luxury Hospitality and Lifestyle Awards is the international organization charged with custodianship of the Signum Virtutis - the Seal of Excellence, the highest, most exclusive award for the pinnacle in Luxury Hospitality & Lifestyle. The annual awards not only recognise, but also set apart the extraordinary achievements in the Hospitality and Lifestyle sectors by bestowing upon them the Signum Virtutis, which serves as a guarantee to the luxury consumer that the recipients are truly the best in the industry. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Qatar's first World Cup stadium to be ready in Q2

The Khalifa International Stadium, one of the major venues for the Fifa Wold Cup 2022 in Qatar, is undergoing redevelopment and is likely to open by the end of the second quarter this year, said a report, citing  a top official.

Work is going as per schedule on all projects related to the Qatar World Cup 2022, reported The Peninsula citing Nasser Al Khater, the assistant secretary- general of the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (SC).

“Khalifa International Stadium will be the first stadium to be ready and will be opened by the end of second quarter. This will be followed by Al Khor and Al Wakrah stadiums that are slated to be completed by end of 2018," stated the official.

"Now we are focusing on eight stadiums that would host the big matches, but final decision regarding the number of stadiums will be taken in May this year," revealed Al Khater in a talk show on Qatar TV.

Al Rayan and Qatar Foundation stadiums will open in 2019 while the remaining stadiums will be also ready by the end of 2020,” he added.

from Construction Realestate

Mawaqif Qatar wins giant car park contract

Msheireb Properties, a subsidiary of Qatar Foundation, said it has signed up Mawaqif Qatar to operate and manage car parking facilities at Msheireb Downtown Doha (MDD), an urban regeneration development located in the heart of the capital.

As per the deal, Mawaqif Qatar will offer more than just parking space management as car parks will not be standalone facilities, but part of the mobility chain, digitally integrated to enable MDD to become a smart city, stated the Qatari developer .

This is an extremely important milestone, comprising the integration and future management of one of the world’s largest underground car parks in the world – providing over 10,000 car parking spaces over six basements to residents and visitors of MDD, said Abdulla Hassan Al Mehshadi, the chief executive of Msheireb Properties after signing the agreement with Gilles Guillochon, CEO of Mawaqif.

Mawaqif Qatar’s mission is to bridge the gap between the cars and the smart city, delivering the highest standard of customer services, stated Al Mehshadi.

With a wealth of global experience behind them via Indigo of France and locally through their experience of managing and operating the country’s prime car parks, they have the proficiency to operate and maintain the parking facilities at MDD and to sustain reliable operating conditions based on high-end supervision digital solutions, using a remote management approach, he noted.

Al Mehshadi pointed out that its partnership with one of the Middle East’s leading traffic and car park management companies was very important to the company.

"It enables us to design and operate a five-star car park, offering our community a first class parking and visitor experience. A project of this magnitude requires a specialised skill set, industry experience and innovative ideas to ensure it is perfectly managed," he noted.

On the tieup, Guillochon said: "We are delighted to bring our specialised knowledge and expertise into this transformative development. We aim to enhance customer experiences, by ensuring a smooth flow of traffic with efficient systems, and well maintained parking areas."

"The visitor experience has always been a top priority for us, and we strive to deliver exceptional services, matching the vision of Msheireb Properties," he added.

Msheireb Properties said it aspires to transform the urban landscape, creating an iconic landmark that respects the environment and local surroundings, preserves cultural traditions, and enhances the quality of life for communities.

"We are delighted to have partnered with Mawaqif Qatar for this hugely significant component of the MDD offering. We look forward to celebrating many more milestones, continuing to forge new partnerships to add value to the community, delivering the essential services to the people of Qatar, for the future of Qatar," he added.

The developer’s flagship project, MDD aims to offer a lively urban neighbourhood featuring premier office space, retail services, leisure facilities, luxurious townhouses, upscale apartments, hotels, museums, civic services, cultural offerings and entertainment areas.

The units in the Phase I are now available for leasing, said the developer.-TradeArabia News Service

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Saturday, February 25, 2017

Simco to roll out key products at Dubai WoodShow

Simco, a leading industrial manufacturing company, will be showcasing its most innovative techniques and machineries at Dubai WoodShow which will be held from March 7 to 9 at Dubai Word Trade Centre.

For Simco, participating in Dubai WoodShow has been an annual highlight, said a senior official.

"We have seen the fruits from the very first edition of the show. This year, we are participating with the biggest stand to showcase latest machinery, as we gear to meet potential partners from the region and overseas, and demonstrate to them Simco’s abilities to meet their requirements," stated Raed Zuheir Damrah, the manager, Wood Division, Simco.

Simco has projected that the wood working machinery market will grow by 20 to 30 per cent thsi year.

"Compared to last year, the start of 2017 has seen a dramatic increase in the company’s stock, which indicates market growth of 60 to 90 per cent during the year, stated Damrah.

Dawood Al Shezawi, CEO, Strategic Marketing and Exhibitions, organizers of the show, said the event has built its reputation as a powerful platform for the wood industry, attracting worldwide players.

"Specialized trade visitors, wood-professionals, consultants, who are knowledgeable, professionals and serious business buyers from all over the world will use the region’s leading trade fair as an opportunity to strengthen ties with new customers, make valuable new contacts and catch up on the latest trends and technological developments," he noted.

We are proud that Simco has confirmed its participating in the event and booked a substantial area for it stand,” said Al Shezawi.

Simco said it will provide various solutions for the wood working sector, such as machinery for edging the concave, convex and full round edges, the beam panel saw for sizing the panels and the 5-Axis CNC router machine.

“Our presence in the show will allow visitors to understand our products better through many demonstrations. We look forward to reaching out to new markets and developing new relationships with clients, in addition to get valuable inputs on their needs and expectations. Direct contact with visitors and other participants is always the most effective way to gather information that can help us improve the way we do business,” added Damrah.

Simco will be showcasing its CNC routing machines, doors and windows manufacturing devices, dust extraction equipment, fittings and accessories, machineries for the furniture industry, kiln drying and related timber technologies.
Also it will have on display, saw milling equipment, accessories and tools, wood products: laminates, veneers, plywood, particle board, MDF, engineered wood, molded plywood, panel products, wood composites, sawn timber, wood treatment equipment and boilers, woodworking materials and consumables and woodworking tools.-TradeArabia News Service

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Bahrain Bay opens new waterfront walkway

Bahrain Bay, a $2.5-billion real estate development located on the north coastline of capital Manama, has announced the opening of the Promenade, a waterfront walkway inspired by locations such as Sydney in Australia and Vancouver in Canada.

The Promenade opening will be coinciding with the launch of the 10-day Bahrain Food Festival at Bahrain Bay.

Organised by the Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (BTEA), it is a culinary exhibition that encapsulates and reflects the multicultural dining environment of Bahrain.

With the participation of 54 restaurants, the festival is all set to tickle the taste buds of visitors taking them through a trail of diverse flavors as well as several entertainment activities, said the statement from Bahrain Bay Development.

Connected by a pedestrian bridge over an intersecting canal, the promenade stretches in a semi-circle across the Four Seasons Hotel and includes kiosks by known food and beverage brands such as Wafflemeister, Naseef, Craves and Bites Corner Café.

Promenade will add glamour to the delectable offerings at the food festival in a scenic setting of calm waters with spectacular views of Manama’s landmarks for an unforgettable experience, it added.

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Al Ansari Exchange partners with SriLankan Airlines

Al Ansari Exchange, the UAE-based foreign exchange and worldwide money transfer company, said it has signed an agreement with SriLankan Airlines, the country's national carrier, to facilitate ticket payments.

As per the terms of the agreement, SriLankan Airlines customers will now be able to make payments through more than 170 UAE-wide Al Ansari Exchange branches. The service will be available during the second quarter of this year onwards.

Rashed Ali Al Ansari, the general manager of Al Ansari Exchange, said: "In line with our efforts to enter into corporate partnerships that add value to our clients, we have recently collaborated with the SriLankan Airlines."

"The deal will enable all customers of the airline to process their payments for tickets booked over the phone or via the airline’s website from any of the Al Ansari Exchange branches across the UAE. The extended convenience will also save time and effort for SriLankan passengers," he stated.

The signing follows the continuous growth enjoyed by SriLankan Airlines, which is attributed to its equally vibrant tourism industry - ably positioning Sri Lanka as a key tourist destination.

Aside from the Sri Lankan travelers, recent figures show that the national carrier has serviced more than 45,000 Indian passengers per year, followed by 36,000 Bangladeshis and around 15,000 British, European and Americans. SriLankan Airlines also ferry around 10,000 UAE nationals and 8,000 Indonesian and Filipino passengers per annum.  

"SriLankan Airlines is pleased to seal a partnership deal with a reputed foreign exchange service provider such as Al Ansari Exchange, allowing us to serve our customers in the UAE with enhanced convenience," remarked Siva Ramachandran, the chief commercial officer.

"We always strive to ensure a seamless and hassle-free travel experience for our passengers and we will continue to enter into strategic partnerships through which we can reach to a wider customer base across the world," he added.

SriLankan Airlines, the national carrier of Sri Lanka and a member of the ‘oneworld’ airline alliance, currently operates over 50 weekly flights to nine Middle Eastern destinations. It provides daily services from Abu Dhabi and Dubai to Colombo, rendering onward connectivity to the Indian Sub-Continent, South East Asia, and the Far East.

Desiree Premachandra, the manager (UAE) SriLankan Airlines, said: "With Al Ansari Exchange as a partner, we have taken another progressive step to make our services more reachable to our customers in the emirates."

"As the national carrier, while offering our passengers the trademark Sri Lankan warmth and hospitality, we will continue to explore new avenues that will enhance the passenger journey," she added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Gettco wins Doha mixed-use tower project

Qatar-based Al Sawari Holding has awarded a key contract to its subsidiary Gettco Construction for the development of a mixed-use tower, comprising residential and hotel apartments, in the heart of West Bay at capital Doha.

Al Seeliya Tower, which will come up on a 40,000 sq m area, boasts a residential hotel serviced apartment tower in the heart of West Bay.

“We are pleased to sign this agreement with Gettco Construction, which I am confident will deliver this project to meet the highest standards of quality and agreed delivery date,” said Sheikh Turki bin Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani, chairman of Al Sawari Holding Company.

Located in the most prominent business district of Doha, the 33 storey tower,  will encompass 180 luxury apartment rooms on completion.

With an exclusive design, the project will transmit a local authentic atmosphere, innovative lifestyle and intuitive service. The tower has its completion date set for the end of this year.

Commenting on the achievement, Hesham Ibrahim, the acting general manager of Gettco Construction: "We are extremely honoured to be awarded Al Seeliya Tower project. We believe that our proven track record, and Gettco Construction’s team being involved in the successful completion of several prestigious projects, was an essential factor to our nomination."

"Gettco Construction is committed to exceed Al Sawari Hotels and Resorts’ expectations," stated Ibrahim.

The contract win is an illustration of Gettco Construction’s dynamic growth and determination in playing a key role in building the future, he added.-TradeArabia News Service

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Bahrain marks Arab Tourism Day in style

Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (BTEA) recently organised ‘Arab Tourism Day,’ under the theme “Tourism & the Development of Local Communities” in capital Manama.

The event was held at the Arcapita Building under the patronage of Zayed bin Rashid Al Zayani, Minister of Industry, Commerce, and Tourism.

The celebration falls under the umbrella of the Arab Tourism Organization (ATO), a part of the Arab League.

The event kicked-off with the screening of a video produced by the ATO demonstrating the voyage of renowned scholar ‘Ibn Battuta’ and his significant historic role during his travels and excursions around the world which enriched the Arab culture.

This celebration is also significant in that it coincides with the birth date of the scholar, said the event organisers.

The event was attended by representatives from the hospitality industry, touristic restaurants, national carrier Gulf Air, and other industry representatives.

“It gives me great pleasure to commemorate this significant initiative that aims to strengthen the role of the tourism sector as a contributing element to the economy in the Arab region.

This initiative supports the Kingdom’s vision to diversify the economy and revitalize the non-oil sector. Moreover, it aims to showcase Bahrain as a regional and international touristic hub,” remarked Al Zayani.

"The kingdom, represented by BTEA, has always stressed on the importance of shifting the tourism sector to be one of the main contributors to the economy. It has also implemented measures that aim to increase the sector’s current contribution to the GDP to reach 7 per cent by year 2018,” he added.

Following the video, there was a presentation by Shaikh Khaled bin Humood Al Khalifa, the chief executive of BTEA, who revealed the latest statistics released by the ATO about the tourism industry in the Arab countries and the importance of the development of this vibrant industry in the journey of sustainable economic development.

“We are delighted to celebrate the ‘Arab Tourism Day’, an initiative that supports BTEA’s objectives of simulating intra-regional tourism and fostering industry activity that will serve to further economic opportunities,” noted Shaikh Khaled.
Shaikh Khaled also highlighted the annual growth rate of the key tourism sector development indicators for the year 2015 to 2016.

According to him, there was a sharp increase in the number of visitors to the kingdom which hit 12.3 million in 2016 compared to 11.6 million visitors the previous year, thus registering an annual growth rate of six per cent.

He also pointed out the increase in the ratio of the number of hotel guests, which rose from 1.2 million guests to 1.3 million guests, recording an increase of 5 per cent.

Shaikh Khaled said the rise in the key indicators had a positive impact on the rate of tourist residency, recording an annual rise of 21.7 per cent to reach 2.8 days from its previously recorded 2.3 days.

"This directly impacted the rate of tourism's contribution to the annual non-oil GDP of the Kingdom by 37 per cent, which contributed to 4.6 per cent of the non-oil GDP for the year 2015, increasing to the rate of 6.3 per cent in the year 2016," he added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Haulotte plays key role in Jeddah airport project

Haulotte Group, a French aerial work platform manufacturer with key operations in the region, said it has deployed its fleet of hitech equipment and machineries for Saudi government's ambitious King Abdul-Aziz International Airport project in Jeddah.

The equipment, including Haulotte Diesel & Electric Scissors, were supplied through Roots Group Arabia and United gulf Equipment Rentals, the partners of Haulotte Group in the region.

The King Abdul-Aziz International Airport is being developed by General Authority of Civil Aviation to increase the passenger footfall from 13 million to 80 million passengers.

The project is being developed in three phases with the first one to be completed by the mid of 2017.

The new airport, which will come up on a 105-sq-km area, is considered one of the most important modern landmarks in the city.

It won an award for the world's best airport engineering project at the 8th Annual Global Infrastructure Leadership Forum in 2015 in terms of specifications and modern technology, said a statement from Haulotte.

The importance of this project lies in its special architectural design which is performed through high international standards to be one of the best sustainable airports in Middle East where energy and environmental issues were highly considered.

The design of the project is inspired by the Islamic architecture with a modern way and it is in line with the Saudi Arabian environment.

The palette of colors, range of materials and textures reflect the natural desert, beauty of clear blue skies and stony desert colors, complemented throughout with geometric patterns, stated the French company.

"The innovative technology of Haulotte Big Booms was the best solution for one of the world’s most developed airport construction site where they are used for building and finishing the modern high tech elevations," said a company spokesman.

"The Telescopic HT43RTJPro which is well known for its rough terrain capabilities and diesel articulated HA41RTJPro with its 360 continuous turntable rotation ability were utilised to reach the difficult working areas in top of the elevations," he explained.

Several numbers of Haulotte Diesel & Electric Scissors have been used in the interior jobs. H18SX and H15SX are perfectly up to these tasks with their ergonomic and spacious designed platform thanks to double extension, said the spokesman.

The superior 4WD with hydraulic differential lock greatly improves the traction on all grounds and the heavy duty Compact 8 was used for the electrical installations, false ceiling, fire sprinkle installation and interior design of the airport, he added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Haulotte plays key role in Jeddah airport project

Haulotte Group, a French aerial work platform manufacturer with key operations in the region, said it has deployed its fleet of hitech equipment and machineries for Saudi government's ambitious King Abdul-Aziz International Airport project in Jeddah.

The equipment, including Haulotte Diesel & Electric Scissors, were supplied through Roots Group Arabia and United gulf Equipment Rentals, the partners of Haulotte Group in the region.

The King Abdul-Aziz International Airport is being developed by General Authority of Civil Aviation to increase the passenger footfall from 13 million to 80 million passengers.

The project is being developed in three phases with the first one to be completed by the mid of 2017.

The new airport, which will come up on a 105-sq-km area, is considered one of the most important modern landmarks in the city.

It won an award for the world's best airport engineering project at the 8th Annual Global Infrastructure Leadership Forum in 2015 in terms of specifications and modern technology, said a statement from Haulotte.

The importance of this project lies in its special architectural design which is performed through high international standards to be one of the best sustainable airports in Middle East where energy and environmental issues were highly considered.

The design of the project is inspired by the Islamic architecture with a modern way and it is in line with the Saudi Arabian environment.

The palette of colors, range of materials and textures reflect the natural desert, beauty of clear blue skies and stony desert colors, complemented throughout with geometric patterns, stated the French company.

"The innovative technology of Haulotte Big Booms was the best solution for one of the world’s most developed airport construction site where they are used for building and finishing the modern high tech elevations," said a company spokesman.

"The Telescopic HT43RTJPro which is well known for its rough terrain capabilities and diesel articulated HA41RTJPro with its 360 continuous turntable rotation ability were utilised to reach the difficult working areas in top of the elevations," he explained.

Several numbers of Haulotte Diesel & Electric Scissors have been used in the interior jobs. H18SX and H15SX are perfectly up to these tasks with their ergonomic and spacious designed platform thanks to double extension, said the spokesman.

The superior 4WD with hydraulic differential lock greatly improves the traction on all grounds and the heavy duty Compact 8 was used for the electrical installations, false ceiling, fire sprinkle installation and interior design of the airport, he added.-TradeArabia News Service

from Construction Realestate

Dubai group KBW launches Islamic real estate fund

KBW Investments, a UAE-based portfolio group active in key sectors including construction, manufacturing and engineering, has announced the launch of Crestmount Capital, its premier flagship Sharia-compliant real estate investment fund (REIF).

KBW Investments, a company set up by chairman Prince Khaled bin Alwaleed bin Talal, said the launch of Crestmount Capital (Crestmount) was dedicated exclusively to the Islamic finance sector. 

“Crestmount Capital is KBW’s flagship entry into the Islamic finance segment. Having explored a variety of investment vehicles and types, the company’s interest has now increasingly turned to activating our existing strengths in finance to work for the advantage of the sophisticated Islamic investor,” remarked Prince Khaled. 

In tandem with the launch, the Dubai-based company has rolled out its new Crestmount Fund I, a fully Sharia-compliant REIF, with a capital of Dh267 million ($73 million).

Crestmount Fund I will immediately deploy the raised amount into five separate Australian Sharia-compliant projects at a local market value of A$100 million ($77 million), privately circulated the opening investment opportunity under the guidance of Amanie Advisors. 

The projects targeted for the capital, at varying stages of progress, are residential developments conceptualized and developed by the largest Sharia compliant developer in Australia, PietyTHP Developments.

"The equitable structure of Islamic financial instruments, when paired with viable and solid target investees, is a wholly appealing value proposition," stated Prince Khaled.

Expressing delight at the bullish reception it had received from Crestmount Fund I, the company chairman said it was looking to expand upon this early success with consistent milestones.

"The investor comfort was secured based on both KBW’s commercial reputability, and by opening with a prime investment portfolio opportunity that boasts an advantageous risk profile," he noted.

KBW's chief financial officer, Shimmy Mathew, said: "When deciding on the offering of Crestmount Fund I, the key was to present an attractive opportunity within Sharia-compliant specifications that would allow investors to see a promising return."

"Crestmount’s initial activity of Dh267 million, A$100 million, through our premier fund has a higher risk-adjusted return as the projects are already under development, thereby ensuring that we’ve presented an agile and secure offering to fund subscribers,” he added.-TradeArabia News Service 

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