Arik Air links the UAE to Nigeria
WEST African airline Arik Air is expanding its network to include the Middle East, while becoming the first airline to offer commercial passenger services between Dubai and Nigerian capital Abuja. Arik Air has appointed the UAE-based Dadabhai Travel as its general sales agent for the GCC region.
Arik Air launched its first commercial flight on this route on July 28, and will operate five flights every week between Dubai and Lagos via Abuja.
While some UAE-based airlines offer weekly flights between the UAE and Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial capital, the Abuja sector remained unserved. Last year, the UAE-Lagos route served more than 300,000 passengers.
Dr Michael Arumemi-Ikhide, Arik Air’s global chief executive officer, said: “The new flights between Lagos and Dubai recognise the increasing demand for travel between these three very important commercial cities.”
The airline has currently deployed a fleet of Airbus A330-200 aircraft on the sector with the aim of providing maximum in-flight comfort, luxury and convenience. Each aircraft is equipped with 30 Premier Business Class seats and 187 Economy Class seats.
Rwanda talks baby gorillas and Kempinski
HOME to half of the world’s remaining mountain gorillas, Rwanda offers tourists a rare opportunity to observe them in their natural habitat on the luxuriant slopes of the Volcanoes National Park. Eighteen baby gorillas were named in Rwanda as part of the tenth annual Kwita Izina – Gorilla Naming Ceremony – on July 1 at the Volcanoes National Park. The theme for this year was ‘Conserving – Empowering – Growing’. This celebrated the registered 26.3 per cent growth in gorilla population in the years since the last census.
Meanwhile, in the Rwandan capital, Kigali, Kempinski Hotels took over the Hôtel des Milles Collines, made famous by the film Hotel Rwanda as a place of refuge during the Rwandan civil war in 1994. This property will be Kempinski’s ninth hotel on the continent, with three more hotels in Africa scheduled to open in the next six months.
Plans are in place for a major refurbishment of the rooms and restaurants to facilitate the full implementation of its signature services and standards before the grand opening in late 2015.
Located atop a hill in the centre of Kigali, the hotel features 112 rooms and suites, meeting and conference facilities including a large conference room for 120 people, an outdoor swimming pool, seven boutiques and a recreation area.
The name of the hotel translates to ‘a thousand hills’, after the lush, hilly landscape of Kigali. Located at a 20-minute drive from Kigali International Airport, the hotel is great for leisure travellers making their way to gorilla treks.
Dusit adds property in Tunisia
DUSIT International has signed on the new Dusit Thani Samara Beach resort, located within the historic city of Sousse, the third largest city in Tunisia.
A complete reconstruction of an existing hotel, the Dusit Thani Samara, Sousse is slated to open in mid-2018. Designs for the 307-key, five-star luxury resort incorporates diverse food and beverage offerings, including Dusit’s famed Benjarong Restaurant serving Thai cuisine. Dusit’s signature Devarana Spa, extending over 1,600 sq m and boasting the largest pool with solarium in Sousse, will also be a highlight.
On the east coast of the country, Sousse is one of its most popular resort destinations. It is easily reachable from the international airports of Tunis Carthage and Monastir Habib Bourguiba, within one and a half hours and 30 minutes’ drive, respectively.
The resort will be housed within a mixed-use development comprising a shopping mall of 26,000 sq m and an additional 350 residential apartments.
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