In Brief

Taj Palace Dubai

Summer Place opens outdoor terrace
BEIRUT: On the occasion of the opening of its outdoor terrace, the Metropolitan Palace Hotel-Beirut’s eminent Chinese restaurant, the Summer Place, hosted a dinner for dignitaries and media representatives.

Situated on the 16th floor, guests were treated to the best of Chinese cuisine amid a breathtaking ambience at the Summer Place Terrace, where they enjoyed a fabulous line-up of authentic Chinese dishes served by our talented Chinese Chef Poon in an ambience quite reminiscent of imperial China, in addition to Mongolian culinary delights and barbecues, while benefiting from a fantastic panoramic view over the sea and the mountains.

Taj Palace Dubai completes three years
DUBAI: Taj Palace Hotel Dubai, the ninth premium property of the Indian Hotels Company under its Taj International Luxury brand, completed three years last month.
When it opened on June 20, 2001, it was the first five-star Dubai hotel with a unique no-alcohol concept. That same year, a market survey rated the hotel as having the largest rooms in the city at 61 sq m (with balcony). The Taj Palace Hotel Dubai retains the same profile, whilst, continuously delivering excellent business results. “Despite the competition in the hospitality industry, the hotel has managed to wrestle the hurdles,” said GM Yannick Poupon. “Our continued optimism towards a brighter business ahead, given our current regional situation, has helped us focus our attention towards achieving our visions and delivering our committed objectives for both our owners and managing company.”

Bennigan’s Irish Tavern & Grill opens in Protaras
LARNACA: In a continuing effort to further upgrade the services offered at their hotels and restaurants, Crown Resorts opened the first Bennigan’s Irish Tavern & Grill in Protaras last month. Bennigan’s Irish Tavern & Grill is a member of the Metromedia Restaurant Group-USA, one of the largest full-service restaurant chains in the world.  MRG is represented in Cyprus and Greece by  Crown Resorts Group, which plans to open several restaurants in the most prominent locations of both countries. Presently there are approximately 300 Bennigan’s Irish Tavern & Grill restaurants around the world.

Shangri-La to open hotel    in Vancouver
HONG KONG: Asia Pacific’s leading luxury hotel group, Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts, has reinforced its expansion outside Asia Pacific with a management agreement for a five-star deluxe hotel in Vancouver, Canada in early 2008.  The hotel is being jointly developed by Vancouver based Peterson Investment Group and Westbank Projects. The deluxe Shangri-La Hotel, Vancouver will be strategically located one  block  from  the  city’s  premier  business  address  at Burrard and West Georgia Streets.

Beau-Rivage Palace offers help for summer courses
DUBAI: While the bulk of Middle East visitors go to Switzerland for a much-awaited opportunity to relax and recharge, an increasing number of parents are now taking advantage of the country’s excellent educational facilities. Known as Switzerland’s cultural capital, Lausanne is in the heart of a region where some of the country’s most renowned private schools are and many of them have announced attractive summer school options for Middle East pupils. While children are busy with their studies, parents can relax nearby in one of the country’s top hotels – the Beau-Rivage Palace in Lausanne which is situated on the shores of Lake Geneva and boasts majestic views of the Alps. Well-established as a discreet getaway destination, the hotel has just completed a review of the special needs and requirements of Middle East travellers and is now better equipped than ever to provide advice and guidance on private education.

Residence Mauritius to open luxury suites
MAURITIUS: The Residence Mauritius has started work on eight new ocean front suites, which will be located throughout this stunning property. These spacious 108 sq m one bedroom suites will be habitable by mid-August and will all be fully air-conditioned. The Residence Mauritius is located on one of the most beautiful beaches on the East Coast.

Soneva Fushi Resort & Spa introduces tree houses
BANGKOK: As the recognised innovator of exceptional guest experiences, Six Senses Resorts & Spas are creating the first tree-houses in the Maldives at the flagship property – Soneva Fushi Resort & Six Senses Spa. Soneva Fushi Resort is uniquely located on the private island of Kunfunadhoo and the two extraordinary tree houses will be interrelated with prime accommodations to become Soneva Fushi Villa Suite & Tree House, and Soneva Fushi Jungle Reserve.

Chedi Muscat joins Conde Nast Hot List
MUSCAT: Conde Nast USA has awarded The Chedi Muscat with a listing in its ‘Hot List’ as one of 100 best new hotels in the world. An even greater achievement is the additional nomination of ‘The Restaurant’ at The Chedi Muscat as one of the best 66 new restaurants from Sao Paulo to Sydney.

Ramada Doha refurbishes lobby
DOHA: The Ramada Doha is currently carrying out extensive renovations to its lobby area. Which means that, although the hotel is functioning normally, you have to go in through, what used to be, the side entrance to the Giwana Ballroom, but now functions as a temporary main entrance, complete with Reception Desk and a seating area. The Ramada hotel celebrates its 25th anniversary in November and has been “performing extremely well with a more than satisfying increase of occupancy,” said GM Gordon Mackenzie. “In fact we are seeing a need for greater capacity.”
GCC’s first Conrad hotel to open in Dubai
DUBAI: Dubai’s first Conrad hotel, a 350-room property, is to be built on Sheikh Zayed Road. Conrad Hotels, the luxury brand of the Hilton family, has reached an agreement with the Abu Dhabi headquartered real estate company Private Property Management, to operate and manage the hotel. “We are pleased that Conrad has selected Dubai as the site for the GCC’s first luxury Conrad hotel,” said Private Property Management MD Mohamed Ahmed Al Bowardi. Jacobus Klein, board director of Conrad Hotels and president of Hilton International, Middle East and Asia Pacific, said, “This will be an extraordinary property and it will fit our plans to expand the Conrad brand further into the Middle East.”

SPG chosen best loyalty scheme
CAIRO: Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) was once again voted “Best Hotel Loyalty Scheme” by business travellers. Sheraton Abu Dhabi, Sheraton Cairo and Sheraton Doha were designated as “Best Business Hotels” in their respective cities. This recognition is a result of Business Traveller Middle East’s travel survey directed at its influential readers. In addition, SPG was voted Programme of the Year in both America and Internationally for the fifth consecutive year and took top honours for Best Website, Best Award Redemption, Best Customer Service and Best Elite Level at the 16th Annual Freddie Awards. Starwood also had the most hotels of any company recognised on the recently announced Condé Nast Traveler Gold List.

First Bvlgari hotel opens in Milan
MILAN: The first Bvlgari hotel recently opened in Milan, in Via Privata Fratelli Gabba, 7b. It is the latest tribute from the Italian jeweller, this time in the hospitality sector, to the world of luxury. The three key elements that characterise the hotel are its unique location, its contemporary design, and the variety of services all of which have been studied with the same accuracy that has always distinguished Bvlgari creations. The Bvlgari Hotel, managed by Bvlgari Hotels & Resorts, the joint venture between the Bvlgari Group and the Ritz Carlton Hotel Company, has been built in one of the most prestigious Milanese locations.

InterCon Dubai joins hands with Alitalia
DUBAI: InterContinental Dubai and Alitalia Airlines have joined hands to offer La Moda dinners two round trip tickets to Italy each month starting from last month till August. All you have to do is buy a bottle of White Borgo Selene wine or Red Villa Tonio Sicilla 2001 Italian wines during your meal at La Moda and you’ll get a chance to win a return ticket to Italy with Alitalia Airlines. At the end of each month, a lucky winner, together with a chosen partner, will have the chance to be chosen out of a raffle draw and head straight to his or her dream getaway. Names that weren’t chosen on the first raffle will also have the chance to enter the following draw.

Taj unveils new luxury hotel
DUBAI: Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces are pleased to unveil its latest creation – the Taj Exotica Resort & Spa in Mauritius. Scheduled to open in November 2004, this luxurious haven of solitude is located at Wolmar Beach, Flic en Flac, one of the most beautiful beaches in Mauritius. The resort is located just 30 minutes from the airport and is spread across 27 acres with its own beachfront. Overlooking the blue waters of Tamarin Bay, Taj Exotica Resort & Spa will be an all Villa Resort of Mauritian architecture with colonial influences.