Dubai wins aviation and hotels honours
Dubai took top honours in aviation and hotels categories at the Business Traveller Middle East Awards announced at a gala celebration at the Burj Al Arab in the emirate yesterday.The awards honoured the best airlines, airports, duty free shopping, hotels, golf courses and car hire companies in the region. The winners were decided by the readers of Business Traveller Middle East who voted for their preferred travel suppliers in 23 different categories, making the awards the leading independent poll of travel consumers in the region. Celebrity photographer Lord Lichfield presided over the awards ceremony, which was held during the Arabian Travel Market (ATM) and attended by senior figures from the regional travel industry. Dubai-based Emirates was voted best airline serving the Middle East, Skywards won the best frequent flyer programme award, Dubai International Airport was picked as the best airport in the region while Dubai Duty Free bagged the best duty free shopping award. British Airways, which was second in the best airline category, won the best European airline serving the Middle East award, while Singapore Airlines was voted best Asian airline serving the region. Dubai-based Jumeirah International took two of the top honours in the hotels categories with Emirates Towers winning best business hotel accolade and the Jumeirah Beach Hotel voted the best leisure/resort hotel in the Middle East. Inter-Continental Hotels and Resorts was voted best hotel chain, having also been voted as having the best business hotels in Amman (Hotel Inter-Continental Jordan), Beirut (Phoenicia Inter-Continental), Cairo (Semiramis Inter-Continental), Jeddah (Jeddah Inter-Continental Hotel), Muscat (Al Bustan Palace Inter-Continental) and Riyadh (Riyadh Inter-Continental Hotel). Hilton International was voted best business hotel in Abu Dhabi, the best business hotel in Manama was Le Royal Meridien, the best business hotel in Doha was the Sheraton Doha Hotel and Towers, the best business hotel in Dubai was Emirates Towers, and the best business hotel in Kuwait City was the Sheraton Kuwait Hotel and Towers. In other awards, the Six Continents Club won the award for the best hotel loyalty programme, Dubai Creek was voted the best golf course and Budget was voted best car rental company.