In Brief

Radisson SAS Sharjah … refurbished ballroom

New look for Radisson SAS Sharjah ballroom
SHARJAH: Radisson SAS Resort, Sharjah, part of the fast-growing Rezidor SAS Hospitality group, will unveil its newly-renovated ballroom this month.

The major refurbishment will transform the ballroom into a contemporary tropical setting to complement the resort’s aquatic theme. “The new design will reflect both the prime beachfront location of the Sharjah property and its luxurious ambience,” said Guy Chidiac, general manager Radisson SAS Resort, Sharjah. “At the same time, we have ensured that it reflects the cultural richness of the region and the colours and styles chosen blend well with the hotel’s surroundings.” The new ballroom will accommodate up to 950 guests.

Mövenpick to open new Taba resort
TABA: Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts (MH&R) announces the scheduled opening of the new luxury five-star Mövenpick resort at Taba on Egypt’s Red Sea coast in early 2005. The latest addition to MH&R’s enviable portfolio in Middle East is in continuance of the Swiss domiciled company’s expansion policy in both new and existing destinations. The luxury Mövenpick Resort & Casino Taba will include 434 rooms, suites and family-chalets overlooking the sea or the mountains. The Mövenpick Resort & Casino Taba represents the chain’s eleventh property in Egypt, located in eight different destinations, a portfolio enhanced by two luxury Nile cruise ships.

IFA to invest in Mauritius resort
KUWAIT: The Kuwait-based International Financial Advisors (IFA) has announced a $100-million investment in a major resort on the Indian Ocean island of Mauritius. A Memorandum of Understanding will be finalised with IFA and the Government of Mauritius, said IFA chairman and managing director Jassim M Al-Bahar. Under the agreement, IFA will acquire a major property to establish a resort consisting of an internationally-operated hotel, villas, townhouses and a golf course. The property is being positioned as a leading new resort on the island, which allows foreigners to purchase land and property in Mauritius.

Marriott launches new website
DUBAI: MARRIOTT International has unveiled a newly-designed travel agent website,, that offers its Preferred Travel Agencies (PTA) commission direct deposit, 24-hour online commission statement access and research capabilities. The new site enables graduates of the award-winning Hotel Excellence! (HE) travel agent training programme to peruse and reserve Fam-Tastic rates and other special packages. The new look of the site makes it easier for the general travel agent community to navigate its new features, which include a brand comparison tool and a 24-hour internet help desk. The site is the result of months of meetings with travel agents around the world to determine what they really want.

Sheraton Abu Dhabi celebrates 25 years
ABU DHABI: Following a total renovation, which is by many considered as a work of art, the 25-year old Sheraton Abu Dhabi Resort & Towers, is now an unparalleled reference in a hustling cosmopolitan city. A landmark of Abu Dhabi for its architecture and its ideal location, the Sheraton Abu Dhabi Resort & Towers has been welcoming business and leisure over two and a half decades. The hotel is prominently situated on the Abu Dhabi Corniche overlooking the turquoise clear water of the Arabian Gulf. All 272 deluxe rooms, including three Towers floors, 11 Junior and Towers suites, three royal suites, a presidential suite and two diplomatic suites, boast magnificent panoramic views. All rooms and suites have been renovated with modern accessories, and are equipped with a fully-interactive TV with direct internet access. Exclusive to the Sheraton Brand, guests staying in any of the rooms will be able to relax in the “Heavenly Beds,” where every detail has been custom designed for a great night’s sleep.

Mövenpick opens regional office at Dubai Media City
DUBAI: Mövenpick Hotel & Resorts has opened a regional office at the Dubai Media City. “Keeping your finger on the pulse is the key to success as Mövenpick Hotel and Resorts get ready for an additional five new properties. It is imperative to have hands-on management and decision-making of a regional level on the doorstep of your investment and development,” said Andreas Mattmüller, senior vice-president for Mövenpick Hotel & Resorts.

Feast at FS Sharm El Sheikh
SHARM EL SHEIKH: Guests at the Four Seasons Resort Sharm El Sheikh are invited to journey back in time with a feast to remember under the stars in the depths of the Sinai Desert. The Bedouin Night is a new addition to the resort’s many dining options. Held every Thursday, it re-enacts the days when herds of nomadic tribesmen, known as Bedouins, travelled Arabia’s desert plains, living a simple but satisfying life. At dusk, guests depart the resort for a journey into the magnificent desert where the Four Seasons Bedouin camp is located. Dinner includes Egyptian folkloric entertainment, including traditional dances such as the stick duel, the Sufi Tanoura rite, and the typical belly dance. Also on offer is the opportunity to take a camel ride and to relax with a soothing Shisha.

Dead Sea Mövenpick bags prestigious award
AMMAN: The 5-star Mövenpick Resort & Spa has been named Hotel of the Year 2004 by the international award of tourism, Golden Helm. The hotel stands on the northeastern shore of the historic Dead Sea, at the lowest spot on earth.
The Golden Helm Award is granted by an international commission, a permanent body composed of top representatives of the tourist sector honouring tourism professionals who have contributed to the development of international tourism with competence, dedication and professionalism.
Sheraton Soma Bay opens therapy centre
CAIRO: The Sheraton Soma Bay has announced the opening of its new Thalasso Therapy Centre, further boosting the hotel’s image as an ultimate resort in the Red Sea. Les Thermes Marins des Cascades is the region’s largest and most comprehensive facility for thalasso-therapy, opening at the Sheraton Soma Bay by the end of October. Established and operated in cooperation with Les Thermes Marins de Saint Malo, one of France’s pioneers in this field, Les Thermes Marins des Cascades offers a wide range of thalasso-therapy treatments that can be tailored into individual programs extending over four or more days, or they can be experienced as individual a la carte treatments over a shorter stay.

New developments  at Doha Hilton
DOHA: High-Point Rendel has been appointed by Sheikh Khaled Bin Hamad Al Thani of the Doha Hotel Company to supply detailed designs for a beach and breakwater for the Doha Hilton in Qatar. The company has already completed a conceptual design of the project for Hilton Group Asia Pacific, which required the beach’s appearance to contrast with the modern materials of the chrome and glass hotel building. High-Point Rendel has been able to offer a move away from the traditional methods of protecting beaches with concrete wave breakers, concrete crest walls and sheet piling.
Instead, it has sourced natural material such as stone, wood and beach sand to fulfil the project requirements, and the breakwater – on which will be located a wooden seafood restaurant – will provide an area of sheltered safe water for swimmers with access from the beach.

Al Diar relaunches Asmak
FUJAIRAH: The Al Diar Siji Hotel takes the concept of fine dining to the next level with the re-launch of Asmak restaurant, complete with a whole new array of cuisine choices: from Indian, Lebanese, Chinese, Iranian and Far Eastern favourites. This major food event fortifies the reputation of Al Diar Siji Hotel as home to the world’s most exciting cuisines and specialties. An assortment of traditional and continental as well as exotic cuisines are on offer.