In Brief


DSS from June 21
THE next Dubai Summer Surprises (DSS) will be held from June 21 to September 1, according to the organisers.

About 1.51 million visitors spent a Dh1.72 billion during the last DSS, boosting the emirate's retail sector.

SATS for Doha Airport
QATAR Aviation Services Company (QAS) and Singapore Airport Terminal Services Limited (SATS) have entered into a broad-based collaboration agreement under which SATS will provide management services at the Doha International Airport (DIA). QAS, a subsidiary of Qatar Airways, is the principal ground handling operator at DIA.  As part of the deal, SATS will provide its services in the areas of process re-engineering, performance measurement, planning, training and review of systems and procedures, for QAS’s ground handling operations at DIA.

WorldHotels drives with Avis
WORLDHOTELS has announced a new partnership with the leading European car rental company, Avis, giving guests at the brand’s properties up to 20 per cent off Avis’ standard rental rates at 4,850 Avis’ stations in 161 countries worldwide. Customers must quote the WorldHotels’ Avis Worldwide Discount number when booking.

New category at DEPA awards
THE fifth edition of the DEPA Middle East Hotel Awards will feature a new category for this year’s line up, to be given to any owner or developer of a Middle East-based mixed-use development that includes four- or five-star hotel components. Judges will evaluate the level of synergy between the key business activities whilst assessing the impact of the design within the local environment and the overall economic effect of the initiative to the given location.

HK residents make 70m trips
HONG Kong residents made 72.3 million outbound trips in 2005, exceptional since the city only has a population of around seven million. A 4.9 per cent increase over 2004, the significant majority of those trips were to China (62.7 million) and Macau (3.84 million). Meanwhile, China reported that Hong Kong residents made 22.6 million overnight trips there, and Macau reported a figure of over 1 million. The numbers were thrown up at the recent travel exhibition ITE, which drew 9500 visitors.

Award for Dubai airport
DUBAI International Airport has won the Silver Award in the Air Transport World 2006 Advertising Awards in the Airports Category.  The award was presented to Anita Mehra Homayoun, director, marketing and corporate communications in Singapore last month.
The emirate’s Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) has announced its participation in more than 20 major exhibitions and road shows worldwide this year to promote Dubai International Airport overseas.

Dubai debut for Costa cruises
LEADING European cruise operator Costa Crociere will offer Arabian Gulf cruises with departures from Dubai starting December 2006. Two ships, the Costa Classica and AIDAcara, will depart every week from the state-of-the-art Dubai Cruise Terminal. A total of 25 departures and 70,000 passenger movements are forecast.

New aircraft firm in Bahrain
SAUDI Arabia’s Alsuwaiket Trading and Contracting has signed an agreement with the Russian Financial Leasing Corporation to establish a new Bahrain-based company, Gulco. The joint venture company will buy and sell civil aircraft and establish aircraft maintenance centres throughout the Middle East and North Africa.

$572m Fujairah Paradise planned
A Dh2 billion ($572 million) tourism project is to be launched in the UAE emirate of Fujairah shortly. Paradise International UAE’s Fujairah Paradise will include building 1,000 luxury villas, a five-star hotel and a shopping mall by the coast of the Arabian Sea.

New terminal for low-cost airlines
THE region’s first dedicated passenger terminal for low-cost airlines will be completed by the end of 2007 at the Jebel Ali Airport City in Dubai. This will be dedicated to budget airlines and executive jet operations. Jebel Ali International Airport will be located 40km from downtown Dubai and 55km from Sharjah.

Dubailand to host 12 theme parks
DUBAILAND will have 12 entertainment theme parks, including one of the largest water parks in the world, says Saeed Al Muntafiq, CEO of Tatweer, which owns and manages Dubailand. The theme parks will also include dinosaur theme park The Restless Planet; a complete Sports City; the Great Dubai Wheel; the Islamic Culture and Science World; the Mall of Arabia and other attractions.