Showing posts with label travel-tourism-hospitality. Show all posts
Showing posts with label travel-tourism-hospitality. Show all posts

Friday, December 22, 2017

Boeing, Embraer confirm merger talks

The Boeing Company and Brazilian aerospace conglomerate Embraer have confirmed that the two companies are engaged in discussions regarding a potential combination, the basis of which remains under discussion.

There is no guarantee a transaction will result from these discussions, a Boeing statement said.

Boeing and Embraer do not intend to make any additional comments regarding these discussions, it added.

Any transaction would be subject to the approval of the Brazilian government and regulators, the two companies’ boards and Embraer’s shareholders, according to the statement. – TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Dnata launches pushback tractors at Dubai Airport

Dnata, the ground handler at Dubai International and Dubai World Central, has launched pushback tractors, which make sure aircraft are positioned precisely on the taxiway for the aircraft to taxi to their take-off.

Weighing between 30 to 70 tonnes, the tractors can push back a fully loaded A380 aircraft (tow-bar less tractor) weighing 550 tons. As aircraft do not have reverse gears, they rely on a pushback tractor to position it for take-off, safely and with precision. The aircraft is pushed back to the manoeuvring area where its engines can then be started, to taxi safely. dnata currently employ around 200 licenced pushback operators to handle the tractors whose engine capacity ranges from 180 – 750 horse power.

The tractor is connected to the aircraft either directly or through a tow bar. At Dubai International (DXB), dnata has 67 pushback and tow-bar less tractors in service that handle up to 500 push backs every day. A conventional pushback tractor is mostly used with a combination of a tow-bar that is connected to the aircraft for in gate pushback. The tow-bar less pushback tractor connects directly to the nose wheel of the aircraft and pushes the aircraft. This type of tractor is used for both gate pushback and towing the aircraft, and travellers on the A380 will see it push back their aircraft.

dnata handles all flights and baggage at Dubai International (DXB) and Dubai World Central (DWC), as well as all passengers transiting though DWC and those accessing Terminals 1 and 2 at DXB. The global air services company manages more than 80 million passenger and 140 scheduled airlines annually, departing or arriving Dubai, or in transit en route to their final destination. – TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Flydubai finalises order for 175 Boeing 737 MAX jets

Dubai’s low-cost airline flydubai and Boeing have finalised the $27 billion purchase of 175 737 MAX airplanes in the largest single-aisle jet order in Middle East history which includes options for an additional 50 jets.

Announced as a commitment at the 2017 Dubai Airshow, the deal allows flydubai to take advantage of the 737 MAX family's flexibility and commonality, while using the unique size and range of the MAX 8, MAX 9 and MAX 10 to suit its growing network.

"I am delighted that we end 2017 with today's announcement representing the next chapter in flydubai's success story," said Ghaith Al Ghaith, CEO, flydubai. "This is our largest order in our eight-year history and our third order with Boeing whose aircraft have given us the ability to carry 44 million passengers since we began operations. With up to 296 aircraft on order, we have become one of the world's top ten airlines in terms of order backlog and we look forward to continuing to enhance the connectivity of Dubai's aviation hub."

flydubai, an all-Boeing operator, first ordered the 737 MAX in 2013 with a purchase of 75 jets. The carrier has taken delivery of five MAX airplanes from that order.

"We are excited to finalize this landmark agreement with our partners at flydubai and we thank them for placing their trust in the 737 MAX family," said Ihssane Mounir, senior vice president, Global Sales & Marketing, Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

"As one of the first operators of the 737 MAX 8, their order for more models-including the recently launched MAX 10-is a vote of confidence in the MAX family's exceptional fuel efficiency, reliability and flexibility. We look forward to hundreds of MAX airplanes supporting flydubai's continued success."

The 737 MAX has racked up 640 net orders this year and more than 4,200 orders since the program launched, making the MAX the best-selling airplane in Boeing history.

The MAX family of airplanes offers seating for about 130 to just over 200 passengers with a range of 3,200 to 3,800 nautical miles. All of the jets use the latest technology CFM International LEAP-1B engines, Advanced Technology winglets and other improvements to deliver the highest efficiency, reliability and passenger comfort in the single-aisle market. – TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Abu Dhabi Airports Company names new chairman

Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Council has issued a resolution reconstituting the board of directors of Abu Dhabi Airports Company, under the chairmanship of Abu Bakr Siddiq Al Khouri, and Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, as deputy chairman.

Set up in 2006, Adac offers aviation-related services at all of the UAE capital's airports including the Abu Dhabi International Airport, Al Ain International Airport, Al Bateen Executive Airport, Dalma Airport and Sir Bani Yas Airport.

The new board will have Mohammed Hamad Al Hameli, Abdullah Abdul Hamid Al Sahi, Saeed Rashid Al Zaabi, Tony Douglas, and Hisham Malak Khalid as its members.

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Turkey, a winter wonderland

Winter is a time when visitors can experience Turkey like most travellers never do as the country offers a different kind of charm, apart form the obvious off-season benefits. 

Travellers can witness the mountains and countryside transform into a winter wonderland. One can visit Turkey’s beautiful lakes that freeze over to form amazing sites. Admire the country's ancient ruins and archeological sites, minus the crowds. And enjoy Istanbul’s winter festivals and Christmas joy from a unique winter perspective, says the Turkish Cultural and Tourism Office in Dubai.

With moderate Mediterranean weather, Turkey’s average temperature in December ranges between 8 and 12 degrees centigrade on the low side, and a conformable 16 to 18 degrees centigrade on the higher side. It’s a perfect weather to investigate Istanbul’s historical and Unesco world heritage buildings located in the Sultanahmet district bursting with colour and art, followed by shopping at the Grand Bazaar.

Visiting the city during the New Year is an extra bonus. Istanbul hosts huge fireworks displays that reflect stunning views reflected by the waters of the Bosphorus. With the city usually covered with a blanket of white snow, the streets come alive with parties, Istanbul style, that spread across neighborhoods and well into the night.

Venturing outside Istanbul during is best suited for travellers who want to visit Turkey’s most ancient Greco-Roman sites on the Mediterranean without the vast loud crowds of tourists witnessed in the summertime. In Antalya, where the climate is warmer than other regions in Turkey, tourists can enjoy its city center which remains active and vibrant with modern shopping malls and renowned nightlife.

As Turkey’s most visited historical site, Ephesus’ magnificent old theater with a capacity of over 25,000 people, can be enjoyed and appreciated to the maximum in December. Get an almost exclusive tour of the Celsus library that in ancient times held over 12,000 scrolls and manuscripts. Finally, end your historical visit by viewing the amazing mosaics of the Roman terraced houses, and the Byzantine homes built for the rich and powerful governors of the time.

Turkey has had as many as a dozen ski resorts that drift down beautifully snow-covered mountains. With more than 100 peaks that reach above 3,000 m, the most famous ski resort, of which there are more than a dozen in Turkey, one of the most popular is located south of the Sea of Marmara, in the alpine village of Uludağ. With an elevation of over 6,500 ft, Uludağin Bursa is the perfect place to combine an active lifestyle, with a relaxed and spiritual feeling of well-being.

And finally, for a genuinely authentic Christmas flavour, winter travellers can venture to visit the place where St. Nicholas lived and preached in the ancient village of Myra, now known as Demre. On St. Nicolas’ Feast Day, which happens on December 6th every year, Greek Orthodox faithful crowd Demre’s ancient basilica to pay tribute to the global icon. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

4.5m travellers heading overseas from UK

ABTA, the UK’s largest travel association, estimates that over 4.5 million passengers are heading abroad over the Christmas and New Year period (December 18 – January 2), with the peak travel day predicted to be December 22, and Christmas Day expected to be the quietest day for travel.

ABTA is advising customers to leave extra time to get to the airports as the roads will be extremely busy, and to check in advance for any travel restrictions if using public transport.

Holidaymakers are either heading off for some much-needed winter sun or to colder climes to enjoy the snow.  Winter sun lovers are heading short haul to the Canary Islands, Antalya in Turkey and Hurghada in Egypt, long haul to Mexico and the Dominican Republic.

France, Italy and Austria are the most popular destinations for those looking for a traditional experience in a snowy destination, with Lapland and Iceland also selling well this year.

Popular New Year’s Eve breaks include the cities of, New York, Amsterdam, Geneva, Dublin, Barcelona and Budapest and domestically London and Edinburgh lead the way.

Millions of people are leaving the UK through the major airports, all of which are reporting high numbers. Over a million are departing from Gatwick, 525,000 from Stansted, 330,000 from Luton, in addition around 480,000 are leaving from Manchester. Heathrow is also anticipated to be very busy with substantial passenger numbers in line with other airports.

Hundreds of thousands of passengers are leaving the UK from Scottish airports, with 226,000 travelling through Edinburgh alone, as well as large numbers leaving from other regional airports.

A significant number of people are also travelling across the English Channel by ferry or through the Channel Tunnel, with hundreds of thousands heading off on the Eurostar who report their busiest days will be December 22, 27 and 29.

Many are taking the opportunity to take a break in the UK, staying in a country cottage or a seaside resort, and city breaks in London and York have also sold well.

Mark Tanzer, ABTA Chief Executive, said: “Christmas and New Year are always a very busy time for the travel industry with people heading off for winter sun or guaranteed snow for a truly authentic Christmas experience. For many people the festive period is a really busy time of year, going away for Christmas or New Year gives families and friends time to relax, safe in the knowledge that someone else is doing the hard work for them. The weather in the UK looks set to be mild over the holiday period, which should help avoid travel disruption, but the roads will be exceptionally busy so customers should allow extra time to get to their departure port and check for line closures and engineering work if using public transport.” - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

ME hotels show negative results for November

Hotels in the Middle East reported negative performance results during November 2017, while hotels in Africa posted growth across the three key performance indicators, according to STR, a provider of analytics and marketplace insights.

Occupancy in Middle East hotels decreased 1.8 percentage points to 69.6 per cent during the month. Average daily rate (ADR) declined 4.6 per cent to $171.10 while revenue per available room (RevPAR) dropped 6.3 per cent to $119.01.

STR analysts note that consistent declines in RevPAR over the past two years correlates with the drop in oil prices. Qatar, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia have experienced the steepest performance decreases in 2017, and all have been significantly affected by reduced corporate business.


Occupancy in African hotels was up by 8.7 percentage points to 64.3 per cent. ADR grew by 0.9 per cent to $106.73 and RevPAR surged 9.7 per cent to $68.66.

Northern Africa drove demand and occupancy growth for the region, with increases of 26 per cent and 25.2 per cent, respectively. Egypt helped that performance with continued high occupancy growth (+39.3 per cent). ADR decreased in Northern Africa (-4.0 per cent), which was in part due to decreases in Morocco (-8.5 per cent) and Tunisia (-2.0 per cent).

ADR in the Southern Africa region grew 4.7 per cent, pushing RevPAR up 4.9 per cent. While occupancy only grew 0.1 per cent, the 68.6 per cent absolute occupancy is the region’s highest occupancy for a November since 2008. – TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Airbus puts new communication solution to the test

Airbus successfully provided the latest in secure communication services to help facilitate operations of the ‘Fortune Global Forum 2017,’ one of the most influential forums on economic development in the world, which was recently held in Guangzhou, China.

The annual conference, hosted by Fortune magazine, saw the participation of more than 1,000 conventioneers—including international politicians and senior business executives from more than 150 of the world’s top 500 companies. Airbus' successful implementation demonstrates its excellence as the official Tetra equipment supplier of the Guangzhou Government Shared Tetra network, which is the second largest city-wide Tetra network in the world.  

In order to ensure the smooth running of the event, 1,000 government members of staff were equipped with smartphones provided with the Airbus application Tactilon Agnet. The app allowed officials to communicate securely and simultaneously in groups with the local authority organisations, who were using their mission-critical Tetra network during the event. At the same time, Tactilon Agnet and the tens of thousands of Tetra users were dispatched from the same command and control centres.

Guangzhou information Technology Security Evaluation Center, the entity responsible for administrating the Guangzhou Tetra Shared Network, confirmed in a statement that ‘the unified command control of Tetra and LTE were adopted, which allowed the network to provide good performance during the Fortune International Forum.’ Moreover, the Tetra and LTE convergence platform ran smoothly and led to the success in securing this international event.

Selim Bouri, head of Middle East and Asia-Pacific for Secure Land Communications at Airbus, said: “For the first time in China and Asia, the convergence application for secure narrow- and broadband communications has been implemented by Airbus. Therefore, this year’s Fortune Global Forum marks another milestone. Again, after providing professional mobile radio technology for the Belt & Road Forum in 2017, we have demonstrated convincingly our expertise and experience in secure communications for this year’s outstanding convention.”

Protected wireless communication was entirely integrated during the event into the Guangzhou Government Shared Tetra network for public safety. It now consists of four Tetra switches and around 400 Tetra base stations. As well as 45,000 subscribers from various authorities, including the emergency response office, the police, rescue services, fire departments, the city administration and other governmental institutions.

Since 2009, Airbus has played a significant role in the overall efforts to upgrade the Guangzhou Government Shared Tetra network. At present, the company is supplying and overseeing the complete migration to the latest version of Internet Protocol (IP), which will also cover the city's new metro lines. The upgrades and extensions are expected to be fully completed in 2018--reaching six Tetra switches and 540 Tetra base stations. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Strong growth predicted for Mideast aviation

Despite a strong headwind of global economic turbulence and fluctuating oil prices, Trumponomics and Brexit, the Middle East will see strong passenger growth in 2018 with an expected annual increase of 7 per cent, according to figures from International Air Transport Association.

Aviation will feature heavily in the programme at Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2018, which is being held between April 22-25, 2018 at the Dubai World Trade Centre. The sessions at ATM 2018 will be moderated by Alan Peaford, a former national newspaper journalist and current president of the UK’s Institute of Internal Communications. Peaford edited Flight International’s Flight Daily News for 17 years and has won an Aerospace Journalist of the Year award on five occasions.

He said: “Aviation and aerospace is thriving despite lower oil prices. Even with regional uncertainties aviation continues to grow. The Arab air transport market grew by 9.9 per cent in the past year, according to the Arab Air Carriers Organisation (AACO) at its 2017 AGM. Growth figures like these should support lively debate at ATM 2018 and provide an element of cautious optimism.”

Iata figures also revealed that Middle East airlines will see net profits doubling to $600 million in 2018, double what they are estimated to make this year. Passenger capacity is also estimated to rise by 6.6 per cent this year and a further 4.9 per cent increase is forecast for 2018.

The Emirates Group which is, one of Arabian Travel Market’s premium partners, had a revenue of Dh49.4 billion ($13.4 billion) for the first six months of its 2017-18 financial year, up 6 per cent from Dh46.5 billion ($12.6 billion) during the same period last year.

However, Etihad Airways bucked the trend in July when it posted a group loss of Dh6.86 billion ($1.86 billion) for 2016. The figure was heavily influenced by one-off impairments that included Dh3.67 billion ($999.1 million) on aircraft and Dh2.96 billion ($805.8 million) on exposures to the ailing carriers Alitalia and Air Berlin.

Air Arabia saw profits rise in this year's second quarter, up 21 per cent to Dh157.93 million ($42.9 million) from the same period last year, although revenues were flat, rising 1.3 per cent to Dh907.23 million ($246.9 million). But Flydubai reported losses of Dh143.24 million ($38.9 million) on revenues of Dh2.5 billion ($680.6 million) for the first half of 2017.

Simon Press, senior exhibition director, Arabian Travel Market, said: “As this mixed bag of results demonstrate, there are continued challenges to be faced by the aviation sector in the Middle East. This includes the US Supreme Court’s decision to back President Donald Trump’s third travel ban, blocking the entry of travellers from Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen.

“President Trump’s protectionist agenda may also impact the Open Skies Agreement which US airlines have campaigned bitterly against for several years.”

The success of the aviation industry in the sky is matched in the Middle East by the continued huge infrastructure investment.

The total value of 152 active aviation-related projects in the Middle East reached $57.7 billion at the end of April 2017, according to research provider BNC Network.

In the GCC countries, Saudi Arabia accounted for the largest share of project value (at 46 per cent of the GCC’s total), followed by the UAE (26 per cent), and Kuwait (12 per cent).

The Gulf region’s aviation projects also accounted for 72 per cent of the total estimated value for all aviation projects in the Middle East and North Africa.

“Aviation is integral to the Arabian Travel Market show and plays a significant role not only during the seminars but also on the exhibition floor. With strong investment prevalent throughout the industry in the region, the growth in passenger numbers will continue unabated,” added Press.

Confirmed exhibiting airlines for ATM 2018 include Etihad Airways, Fly Dubai and Saudi Airlines with more major players to follow.

ATM 2018 has adopted Responsible Tourism as its main theme and this will be integrated across all show verticals and activities, including focused seminar session, featuring dedicated exhibitor participation.

ATM – considered by industry professionals as a barometer for the Middle East and North Africa tourism sector, welcomed almost 40,000 travel professionals to its 2017 event, including 2,661 exhibiting companies, signing business deals worth more than $2.5 billion over the four-day show. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Emiratis exempted from pre-entry visa for China

The UAE and China have signed an agreement to exempt UAE nationals carrying regular passports from obtaining pre-entry visas, with the possibility of staying for up to 30 days on each visit, starting from January 16.

The memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed on Tuesday in Abu Dhabi by Ahmed Saeed Elham Al Dhaheri, Assistant Under-Secretary for Consular Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation for UAE, and Ni Jian, Ambassador of the People's Republic of China to the UAE, reported Emirates news agency Wam.

Al Dhaheri said that from January 16, 2018, UAE citizens can visit China without getting a pre-entry visa and stay for up to 30 days per visit.

Al Dhaheri added that the move by the Chinese Government reflects the stature attained by the UAE and contributes to strengthening bilateral relations and opening new avenues for growing tourism and trade between the two friendly countries.

"The UAE has become a model for good governance, moderation and peaceful co-existence and a symbol for achievement and excellence at the international levels," he said.

He also noted that the welfare of the UAE citizens features as a priority in the wise leadership's vision.

The UAE and China established diplomatic relations in November 1984. The UAE opened its embassy in Beijing on March 19, 1987. It also opened consulates in Hong Kong on April 2000, Shanghai on July 6, 2006, and in Guangzhou on June 13, 2016.

China opened its embassy in Abu Dhabi in April 1985 and its consulate in Dubai in November 1988.

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Explore the streets of Istanbul this winter

This winter, Ajwa Hotel Sultanahmet offers the chance to step away from the conventional holiday and loose oneself in the winding streets of the magical city of Istanbul.

The artisanal gem is located in the very heart of Old Istanbul, providing guests with opulent yet quintessentially Turkish rooms, creating an air of excitement and mystery from the moment guests set down their bags. The winter season is the perfect time to make use of the extensive ‘Culture Package’ available at the hotel, wherein guests can reside in lavishly decorated deluxe rooms. Visitors can marvel at the especially sourced artworks that adorn the grand walls of the majestic property. In order to keep up energy levels for a long day of exploring all that the city has to offer, the in-house Azerbaijani restaurant Zeferan provides diners with a sumptuous range of wholesome dishes that pay homage to the inviting scents and piquant flavours of the popular cuisine.

As part of the generous ‘Culture Package’ guests will be supplied with an Istanbul travel card with a value of 50 Turkish Lira, which can be used whilst traversing across the beautiful city. Sights that are not to be missed include the iconic Blue Mosque, towering imposingly over the city, with its glorious minarets and domes. The Hagia Sofia would be the next stop, providing visitors with a glimpse of the architectural styles of both the legendary empires that once ruled Istanbul, the Byzantine and Ottoman empires. Furthermore, visiting Topkapi Palace, the Grand Bazaar and Istiklal Avenue will make for a truly memorable end to the year. With the plethora of historical sights and museums to fit into the trip, guests will be glad to find that the package includes 2 complimentary entries to sights of their choosing.

The combination of the grandeur of the hotel, the intriguing sights and sounds to take in and the flavoursome cuisine on offer render the festive well spent at Ajwa Hotel Sultanahmet.

Prices for the Culture Package start from €230 ($270.9) per night
• Deluxe Room with breakfast
• Two complimentary entries to the museums or historical sights in Istanbul
• Istanbul NOL Card with 50.TL
• 15 per cent discount on dinner at Zeferan Restaurant. - TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Monday, December 18, 2017

Philippines targets 100,000 ME tourists in 2017

The Philippines expects to record 100,000 tourist arrivals from the Middle East region by the end of 2017, the country’s Department of Tourism (DOT) said.

The Philippines received a total of 83,546 tourists from the Middle East during 2016, growing by 9.69 per cent over 2015, DOT added, noting that the region is one of the fastest growing source markets.

 Tourist arrivals from Saudi Arabia and UAE, the two largest markets out of the region for the Philippines, reached 50,884 and 16,881 respectively.

The PDOT aims to achieve seven million tourists by the end of 2017 and proactively developing strategic partnerships with key stakeholders in the Middle East to capture a sizeable percentage of its high-yield tourist market.

Tourist arrivals in the Philippines grew by almost 12 per cent in the first ten months of this year compared to the same span in 2016, the DOT said.

The DOT cited data showing an 11.54 per cent marginal increase in tourist arrivals, from 4,908,017 recorded from January to October of 2016, to a total of 5,474,310 in the same 10-month period this year.

Revenue-wise, the department recorded P243.23 billion of visitor receipts from January to September, a double-digit rise of 36.28 per cent from the previous year's P178 billion earnings.

Tourism secretary Wanda Teo said, “South Koreans remain the country’s top visitor market this year with 1,332,141 arrivals (24.33 per cent) followed by China with 810,807 arrivals (14.81 per cent).”

The US had dropped to third place with 785,269 arrivals (14.34 per cent), followed by Japan with 490,857 arrivals (8.97 per cent), and Australia with 206,443 (3.77 per cent).

"International visitor arrivals continue to increase with the influx of Chinese tourists, becoming the second largest in number to come to the Philippines from January to October this year," the secretary added.

The number of visitors from China and India saw a significant increase of 39.28 per cent and 20.28 per cent respectively, the DOT noted.

“With the surge in Chinese and Indian arrivals, we are optimistic to hit the target of at least 6.5 million as set by the National Tourism Development Plan for 2017-2022," Teo said.

In October, when the number of visitors from the US was first overtaken by those coming from China, Teo had cited Beijing's promise to send more tourists to help boost the country’s visitor arrival figures. – TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Air Arabia to start flights to second Moscow airport

UAE-based budget airline Air Arabia is set to launch flights to Sheremetyevo International Airport in Russia from its hub in Sharjah starting from February 1.

This is the second airport Air Arabia serves in Moscow, boosting the flight to daily serve the Russian capital with a double daily frequency, said a statement from Air Arabia.

The flight to Sheremetyevo International Airport complements the airline’s existing daily services to Moscow’s Domodedovo International Airport.
The flight will operate four times a week on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays, departing Sharjah International Airport (SHJ) at 9.10am, and arriving at Sheremetyevo International Airport (SVO) at 1.35pm local time. The return flight will depart Sheremetyevo at 2:35pm, landing in Sharjah at 8.45pm, it stated.
The UAE lowcost carrier said it will upgrade to a daily Sheremetyevo flight starting from March 1, 2018 thus joining the current daily flight to Domodedovo to serve the city of Moscow with a double daily frequency.
On the new flights, Group CEO Adel Al Ali said: "We are pleased to serve Moscow’s two busiest airports providing our customers with choice and convenience. Our flights to Moscow cater to a lively market that is made up of both leisure and business travelers."

"With the launch of our flights to Sheremetyevo, passengers can now benefit from additional travel options to connect to Russia from Sharjah and other destinations in our network," he noted.
Moscow is home to some of the world's most incredible architecture and holds a history that is unique and unparalleled. Eternally showcasing its majestic artistry, combined with experiences that provide an incomparable thrill, Moscow is truly a city that leaves no stone unturned.  
Air Arabia currently operates flights to 133 routes across the globe from five hubs located in the Middle East and North Africa.-TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

At the Top, Burj Khalifa offers new VR experience

At the Top, Burj Khalifa, the region’s most-visited attraction by leading developer Emaar Properties, has unveiled a new virtual reality (VR) experience that simulates the real-feel of scaling all Burj Khalifa’s 160 habitable floors as well as take a hard-knuckle climb to the top of the spire – the highest point of the global icon.
Mission 828, the new VR attraction, gives visitors the unprecedented opportunity to have the virtual experience of scaling to the pinnacle of the tower before taking a parachute-jump right down to The Dubai Fountain. It has been carefully simulated to take users on a nerve-wracking four-minute journey that will give them a feel of what it is like to ascend and descend the tower in the most adventurous fashion.
Highlighting the innovations that are introduced regularly by Emaar, Mission 828 can be experienced through six VR pods at Level 125 and another at Level 124.

A ‘mission commander’ reaches out to the users as they first take the elevator ride on VR mode to the 160th level of Burj Khalifa. They can feel the gravity-defying ride up, and proceed to collect suction gloves to ascent the spire, all of 200-m high, pinnacling at 828 m.

The next step in the adventure is grabbing the parachute for the free-fall VR ride into the dancing fountains.
The VR experience uses ‘room scale’ tracking technology that enables users to move in three-dimensional space and interact with the environment with motion-tracked handheld controllers. The pods even have a wind-effect, whereby the VR ride is as close to real as possible.
Mission 828 has been developed by an expert team that has worked for the Philharmonic Orchestra, Unicef, British Fashion Council and Rotary International as well as supported film and TV productions such as Harry Potter 6 and 7. Apart from the regular ticket charge, Mission 828 can be experienced with an additional ticket of just Dh35 per person.

Regular ticket prices are currently at an average of Dh125 for At the Top, Burj Khalifa, and Dh500 for At the Top, Burj Khalifa Sky.-TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Abu Dhabi Airports completes major MTB tunnel

Abu Dhabi Airports has announced the completion of the Midfield Airside Road Tunnel (Mart) that links the new Dh19.1 billion ($5.2 billion) Midfield Terminal Building with the southside terminals (Terminal 1 and 3) at Abu Dhabi International Airport.

Abu Dhabi Airports, which is the operator of both Abu Dhabi and Al Ain International airports, said the Mart tunnel is approximately 1,165 m long with average overall width of 35m, and will provide airside connectivity between the existing terminals and the MTB.

This will pave way for the passage of passenger and crew buses, catering trucks, ground services equipment, transfer baggage, cargo vehicles and emergency service vehicles, said a statement from Abu Dhabi Airports.

The completion of the tunnel was marked by a site visit of Abu Dhabi Airports’ executive team lead by its acting CEO Abdul Majeed Al Khoori, who said: "Today’s achievement is a key milestone towards delivering an airport hub that can sustain growth for years to come."

"It is crucial to have efficient connectivity between all of the airport’s terminals once the MTB is operational, to ensure we deliver a highly functional gateway, utilizing all available resources and infrastructure at its highest operational capabilities," he stated.

The Mart tunnel was constructed in two phases; the Phase One being the southern part of the tunnel section beneath the south runway, which was completed in December 2014, and Phase Two connecting Mart Phase One with the Airside towards Terminals 1 and 3, including the full MEP installation for the entire project, to deliver a fully operational network of road tunnels.

"The Mart project is a very complex one being carried out in a live and extremely busy airport environment, alongside a mega project being built," added Al Khoori.-TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Dubai launches promotion on marine transit modes

Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) is gearing up for the launch of special offers and a host of excellent marine transit services aboard the Water Bus, Dubai Ferry and Abra on the New Year’s Eve (December 31).

Mansour Rahma Al Falasi, director of Marine Transport at the Public Transport Agency, said: “This service is provided in the context of RTA’s ongoing engagement with customers. The RTA is stepping up efforts to offer a new marine transit experience availing riders a superb opportunity to live the thrilling moments of festivities at Burj Khalifa, Burj Al Arab, the Atlantis and Dubai Water Canal, through sea cruises aboard marine transit modes. The experience is bound to leave fond memories for residents, visitors and tourists.”

“Individuals interested in availing this service can communicate via RTA’s dial-free number (8009090) or mobile phone number 050-7932662 to learn more about the Water Bus, Dubai Ferry and abra journeys. Dubai Ferry trips will start from 09:00 pm on New Year's Eve and continue up to 01:30 am (past midnight) while the Water Bus and abra trips will start at 10:30 pm and end at 01:30 am (past midnight). The Water Bus starts service from the Terrace &, Promenade Station and Marina Mall (Dubai Marina). The fare is Dh125 ($34) while children under two years can go for free," he continued.

“Dubai Ferry trips will start from Marina Mall Station (Dubai Marina), Ghubaiba Station, Dubai Festival City Station (Dubai Creek) and Sheikh Zayed Road Station (Dubai Water Canal). Dubai Ferry fare is Dh300 for silver class and Dh450 for gold, with 50 per cent discount for children aged between 2 and 10 years, and free for infants aged less than two years. Abra trips start from Dubai Festival City, Jaddaf Station and Ghubaiba Station at a fare of Dh125 per person, and free of charge for infants less than two years,” explained Al Falasi.

“The RTA would wish to avail this opportunity to share the joyful moments with celebrators of the jubilant festivities marking the New Year. Dubai would be turned out in a festive gear free from inland traffic congestions & crowds in places like the iconic Burj Khalifa; the tallest building on the planet and Dubai Water Canal. The service reflects RTA’s excellent marine transit services for the day, and its attention to raising the satisfaction of customers and riders of these modes.

“The Dubai Ferry, Water Bus, and abras have special appeal to Dubai residents, visitors and tourists, thanks to the picturesque beaches of the city. Dubai boasts of an array of fabulous tourist icons such as the World Islands, Nakheel islands and Dubai Water Canal among other tourist destinations and deluxe hotels. The launch of this quality service will add a further majesty to the marine transit modes during the event,” concluded Al Falasi.- TradeArabia News Service

from Travel Tourism Hospitality

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Marriott to debut nearly 40 luxury hotels in 2018

Marriott International has announced that the company is set to open nearly 40 luxury hotels in 2018 as it continues to cater to a new affluent traveller, offering an unmatched variety of transformative travel experiences.

Providing globetrotters with a truly global perspective and an unparalleled portfolio of eight distinct luxury brands, Marriott International Luxury Brands include world-renowned hospitality hallmarks The Ritz-Carlton, Ritz-Carlton Reserve, St. Regis, W Hotels, The Luxury Collection, Edition and JW Marriott.

With an unrivaled network of landmark hotels and resorts in 60 countries today, Marriott International is set to expand its luxury footprint yet further with 200 hotels in the development pipeline, representing 25 new countries, from Iceland and Nepal to Cuba and the Philippines.
“From former palaces in Venice and Vienna, to skyscrapers in Hong Kong and Dubai, to intimate, remote escapes in the Maldives and Mexico, the breadth of our portfolio is incomparable and allows us to surpass the expectations of our guests around the globe,” said Tina Edmundson, Global Brand officer, Marriott International. “We see luxury as a launch pad for self-actualisation, with bucket lists evolving from where you want to go to who you can be. With data showing a global shift in perception around luxury, we are uniquely positioned to provide personalized and truly differentiated experiences that resonate with this next-generation jetsetter.”
Personalised fulfillment is the future of luxury
A global luxury study conducted in partnership with Skift, the largest travel industry intelligence platform, revealed that the number one priority for luxury travellers is centered around transformative travel and authentic experiences that provide a new perspective on the world.

Edmundson said: “Today’s global luxurian defies traditional stereotypes, moving far beyond the antiquated notion of ‘time’ being the ultimate luxury. Our guests are on a journey towards personal fulfillment, seeking meaningful and purposeful travel experiences that speak to their inner, idealized selves. Whether that be creating a signature dish at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman’s Culinary Studio, prioritising wellness by tapping into on-demand fitness with JW Marriott’s Behind the Barre program, recharging in an over-water villa at The St. Regis Maldives or exploring one of the world’s most energetic cities through a W Insider.” With a new lens on luxury and focus on the fast-evolving expectations and aspirations of the global traveller, Marriott International elevates travel with highly contextualised, nuanced brand experiences that signal the future of luxury. “Access is the new authentic, and our brands are portals to diverse cultures and one-off travel moments,” said Edmundson.
The Ritz-Carlton and St. Regis Hotels & Resorts further define the luxury landscape in 2018
The Ritz-Carlton, the legendary hospitality brand with 94 hotels in 31 countries, will continue to set the standard in luxury in 2018. Known for creating exceptional experiences, the brand recently celebrated the opening of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel de La Paix, Geneva and in 2018 is slated to debut six exciting locations, including China’s scenic Jiuzhaigou Valley.

The year 2018 will also see renovations of key properties including The Ritz-Carlton, Berlin and The Ritz-Carlton, Istanbul. With three Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties open, the debut of Zadún, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve in Los Cabos, will further define the brand’s ability to create an intimate, culturally immersive experience that is set apart by heartfelt care and human connection.
St. Regis Hotels & Resorts, with 42 hotels in 21 countries today, is scheduled to celebrate the renovation of The St. Regis Rome in 2018, as well as openings in destinations such as Cairo and Amman. This follows recent debuts, including The St. Regis Shanghai Jingan and The St. Regis Astana.
Luxury rebel W Hotels spins explosive global footprint
Scheduled to reach 75 hotels by 2020, W Hotels skillfully balances the power of a global brand with the relevance and personality of a local insider. In 2017, the iconic lifestyle brand electrified the skyline with the premiere of W Shanghai – The Bund, and debuted the next generation of boundary-pushing design in the United States with W Bellevue. Defined by visionary design, edgy fashion and buzzing music programing, W Hotels sits alongside luxury, not confined by it. 2018 will be a year of unprecedented growth for the brand with eight hotels set to open, ranging from Dubai to Brisbane and Panama City.
Edition set to reach 20 properties by 2020
With seven new properties scheduled to launch across three continents, and many more in the pipeline, 2018 will mark a pivotal moment for Edition. Created through a ground-breaking partnership between boutique hotel creator and innovator Ian Schrager and Marriott International, the Edition brand is slated to grow exponentially from a collection of four to eleven properties by the end of 2018. Its timeless design, uncompromising quality, true originality and impeccable modern service, further defines the boutique hotel category. Following The Sanya Edition’s launch in December 2016, Edition’s Asian presence is scheduled to expand with two additional properties launching in Shanghai and Bangkok in 2018. In addition, the brand’s second and third European hotels are set for launch in Bodrum and Barcelona. Edition will launch its first outpost in the Middle East in Abu Dhabi, whilst Edition’s plans to increase its US presence with two properties located in New York’s Times Square and West Hollywood.

The Luxury Collection embodies experiential travel
A rapidly growing ensemble of 102 hotels in more than 30 countries around the world, The Luxury Collection takes guests on journeys to the world's most inspiring places, enriching and transforming modern global travel with authentic and indigenous experiences. From epicurean delights in the heart of iconic wine regions to city landmarks in Paris and Milan to historic masterpieces such Cristallo, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa nestled in the Italian Dolomites, the brand continues to offer global explorers hotels that define the destination. The Luxury Collection is set to debut 10 properties next year in captivating locations that span the globe, including Los Cabos, Savannah, Vail and Okinawa.
JW Marriott expands global footprint
Inspired by its legendary namesake, JW Marriott is a brand committed to cultivating enriching experiences for guests seeking approachable, modern luxury. With 79 hotels and resorts today in nearly 30 countries, including the recent openings of JW Marriott properties in Vancouver, Jaipur and Phu Quoc, an island oasis off the coast of Vietnam, the brand is looking forward to yet another milestone year with openings slated for 2018 in Nashville and the Maldives. JW Marriott will also continue to reinforce and revitalize its global portfolio with multi-million dollar renovations in more than half of its properties, including JW Marriott Bangkok and Grosvenor House, a JW Marriott Hotel. - TradeArabia News Service

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RJ extends festive promotion

In light of the heavy demand for Royal Jordanian’s end-of-year sales promotion- ‘Merry Reasons to Travel’- and in celebration of its 54th anniversary, the airline is extending the promotion till December 20.

This promotion was set to run from between December 3 and December 14, for travel between January 15 and May 10, 2018. But, due to the growing demand on this offer through RJ’s different sales channels, the airine positively responsed to its guests wish to extend this promo for another one week.  

‘Merry Reasons to Travel’ targets customers who wish to purchase round-trip, Economy Class tickets, with a stay for a minimum of 3 days and a maximum of one month at the place of destination.

Customers can avail the special fares by visiting RJ’s sales offices or their travel agents, using the RJ mobile app, or contacting the Call Centre. - TradeArabia News Service

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Experience redeined luxury at Baros Maldives’ Deluxe Villas

Situated in sparkling crystal-clear waters, surrounded by natural beauty and limitless ocean views, Baros Maldives offers the perfect place to not only unwind on endless white sand beaches but to also create unforgettable memories with all that the Maldives has to offer.

Baros Maldives has become a leading luxury destination in the Maldives, known for always staying ahead in terms of guests’ experiences. The award-winning resort’s Deluxe Villas have recently been upgraded to a higher level of comfort and luxury in a refreshingly elegant style.

Perfectly secluded, each villa, whether beachside or overwater, boasts the luxury of complete privacy meaning one can share special moments in absolute solitude. Although these 24 Deluxe Villas are the base category accommodation at Baros Maldives, they offer a sophisticated ambience and attractive additions that make them outstanding. The interior features a generous 89-sq-m of blissful living space transformed with bright décor, reflecting the spirit of endless summer. The inner design has undergone a stylish upgrade with elegantly designed rooms, set with incredible views of the sea. Calm and inviting with a soothing colour palette, the rooms also feature a work space and vanity tables in side alcoves.  

The polished wooden furniture is neo-art deco in style with simple, classical shapes reflecting Baros’ understated approach to luxury. Sliding French windows open onto a white sandstone deck which can be widened to accommodate a large day bed and a table for two for alfresco dining or cocktails as the sun sets. Each villa is equipped with fine furnishings, luxurious linen and elegant bathrooms. A unique feature of these upgraded Villas is the stunning partly open-air bathroom with waterfall shower in a sandstone-walled flower garden and separate oval bathtub. Each Deluxe Villa features a thatched roof of palm fronds and is set in its own flower garden with private access to the beach ensuring it blends seamlessly into the natural environment of the island resort.

Every Deluxe Villa at Baros Maldives is independent complete with superior quality amenities and is serviced by a Villa Host 24 hour a day. Tastefully redefined, these villas are typical of the modest luxury that is the essence of Baros Maldives and among the most highly demanded of the resort’s 75 overwater and beachside villas.
Baros Maldives boasts an enviable location, only a four-hour flight from the GCC and a scenic 25-minute boat trip from Male’ Airport, making it an ideal destination for a short or extended break. With the natural beauty of this private island resort, 75 elegant overwater and beachside villas, three gourmet-class restaurants, two bars and a cigar and shisha lounge, Baros Maldives is the perfect retreat for a relaxed or adventurous getaway.

Rates at Baros Maldives start at $422.66 per night for two people in a Deluxe Villa (plus taxes, and service charge). - TradeArabia News Service

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Delta orders 100 A321neo ACF aircraft

US-based Delta Air Lines has placed an order with Airbus for 100 of the manufacturer’s modern A321neo ACF (Airbus Cabin Flex configuration) aircraft.

Delta selected the largest member of Airbus’ single-aisle Family to meet Delta’s future requirements for aircraft with greater efficiency and additional capacity. The airline’s A321neo ACF planes will be powered by Pratt & Whitney PW1133G-JM geared turbofan engines.

“This is the right transaction at the right time for our customers, our employees and our shareholders,” said Delta CEO Ed Bastian. “Delta, Airbus and Pratt & Whitney share the same commitment to safety, efficiency, innovation and continuously improving the customer experience. This order for the state-of-the-art A321neo with Pratt’s Pure Power next-generation jet engines reflects our long-term commitment to these values for Delta people and all our constituents.”

“We at Airbus are very happy we won this hotly-contested campaign, together with our partner Pratt, and we are proud to serve Delta with the A321neo. This important order will further strengthen our partnership with Delta - one of the world’s best airlines - which we have developed over many years.” said Tom Enders, Airbus chief executive officer.

“It is also good news for our employees in Mobile, Alabama, where most of the Delta planes will be manufactured. We look forward to seeing the A321neo ACF flying in Delta colours soon.”

Delta’s announcement on the A321neo ACF follows several orders in recent years for the current engine option (ceo) version of the A321. Delta has ordered a total of 117 A321ceos, each powered by CFM56 engines from CFM International.

The A321neo ACF introduces new door and fuselage enhancements that allow airlines to make best use of the cabin space with a range of up to 4,000 nautical miles. The A321 is the largest member of the A320 Family, seating up to 240 passengers. Incorporating the latest engines, aerodynamic advances, and cabin innovations, the A321neo will offer a significant reduction in fuel consumption of 20 percent by 2020. With more than 5,300 orders received from 96 customers since its launch in 2010, the A320neo Family has captured some 60 percent share of the market.

Most of Delta’s A321neos will be delivered from the Airbus US Manufacturing Facility in Mobile, Alabama. The airline has taken delivery of 13 US-manufactured Airbus aircraft since last year.  In addition, the 50th aircraft to be produced by the Airbus US Manufacturing Facility will be delivered to Delta later this week. The Mobile factory produces four aircraft per month for delivery to Airbus’ US customers. Plans for further production ramp up are currently being discussed.

In addition to Airbus’ US manufacturing, the company has a long and strong partnership with American aerospace supplier companies.  Today, there is more US content in Airbus aircraft than from any other country, with more than 40 per cent of the company’s aircraft-related procurement coming from the United States.

As of the end of November, Delta was flying a fleet of 196 Airbus aircraft, including 150 A320 Family members, 42 A330 widebodies, and four A350 XWB aircraft. – TradeArabia News Service

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