Gbenga Oluboye

Gbenga Oluboye

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Friday, 24 November 2017 00:00

World Dream launches to Asian cruise guests

Genting Hong Kong has celebrated the arrival of Dream Cruises’ second new ship, World Dream, at the Kai Tak Cruise Terminal with a christening ceremony to impart good fortune to the vessel.

Puan Sri Cecilia Lim, World Dream’s official godmother and the wife of Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay, chairman of Genting Hong Kong, delivered her inspirational message and activated the traditional breaking of the champagne on the hull of the new ship.

The event took place in the presence of more than 1,000 guests including government dignitaries, business and trade partners and media.

World Dream is the sister ship to Genting Dream which debuted last November to great acclaim.

“We are truly excited to christen World Dream in Hong Kong – and to be the first-ever cruise ship to have this honour in a city that holds such significance to Genting Hong Kong and Dream Cruises.



“As the pioneer of the Asian cruise industry 24 years ago, Genting Hong Kong developed the Asian cruise industry with the founding of Star Cruises, with its headquarters in Hong Kong,” said Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay.

“Now, with Genting Dreams’ arrival in the Pearl River Delta a year ago, she has delivered over 300,000 international passenger trips from across the region.

“Hundreds of jobs have been created and tourism receipts in hotels, airlines and destination management industries for the Pearl River Delta have grown significantly.”

During the event, Tan Sri Lim also expressed the importance of Hong Kong to both Genting Hong Kong and the overall cruise industry in the Asia Pacific and reiterated the company’s commitment to showcase the city and grow the Pearl River Delta region into a world-class, cruise destination hub.

Dream Cruises was created to bring guests’ dreams to life through transformational and inspirational voyages at sea.

With the well-received launch of Genting Dream last year, Dream Cruises has been able to build on the success of the inaugural ship to fine tune World Dream to better cater to the needs of affluent, independently-minded and confident Asian travellers.

World Dream will provide guests with the highest levels of service and spacious comfort that Dream Cruises has become known, with over 70 per cent of staterooms featuring private balconies and a selection of connecting rooms catering to extended families and groups.

Friday, 24 November 2017 00:00

Oman Air releases additional flights to Duqm

Oman Air has increased its frequency from Muscat to the port town of Duqm in central-eastern Oman in response to growing demand. 

The national airline for Oman now operates six flights a week on its 737-800 aircraft, instead of the five that it operated during the summer.

The new Tuesday flight, which takes just under 90 minutes, will depart Muscat at 12:50 arriving in Duqm at 14:15 and departing Duqm at 15:00 arriving in Muscat at 16:25.



This new day of operation is in addition to the existing flights that Oman Air operates same timings to and from Duqm on Monday and Thursday.

Duqm is an industrial port town of great commercial importance, which has experienced vast development since 2008.

As a Special Economic Zone, it attracts investors from around the world.

Oman Air always strives to accommodate guests and is delighted to respond to additional demand by increasing the number of flights to the important town of Duqm.

Boeing and Avolon, the international aircraft leasing company, have finalised an order for 75 737 MAX airplanes.

The confirmed order is for 55 MAX 8s and 20 MAX 10s, with options for 20 additional MAX 8s.

The agreement, announced as a memorandum of understanding at the 2017 Paris Air Show, is valued at nearly $11 billion at list prices including the 75 firm and 20 option aircraft.

Launched at the 2017 Paris Air Show, the MAX 10 will have the lowest seat-mile cost of any single-aisle airplane.

The new airplanes will bolster Avolon’s airplane portfolio to meet growing customer demand in the narrow-body market segment.



“The order for Boeing’s newest 737 MAX airplanes will strengthen Avolon’s position as a leading lessor in the global commercial aviation market,” said Avolon chief executive, Dómhnal Slattery.

“This is the largest single order that we have placed with Boeing to date and underscores the scale of our ambition and the strength of our business.

“We have experienced strong interest in our initial MAX orders and this incremental order reflects this demand.

“With over 140 MAX aircraft now in our owned and committed fleet, we are confident that the superior economics and solid reliability of the 737 MAX family of airplanes will continue to allow our customers to grow their businesses profitably for many years to come.”

Headquartered in Dublin, Ireland, Avolon is one of the world’s leading aircraft leasing firms, with an owned, managed and committed fleet of 915 aircraft as of September 30th, 2017.

The 737 MAX is the fastest-selling airplane in Boeing history, having surpassed 4,000 total orders from 92 customers.

Friday, 24 November 2017 00:00

Ascott opens third property in Shenzhen

Ascott is expanding its presence in China with the opening of its third property in Shenzhen.

Located in Nanshan District, the city’s technology and industrial hub, Ascott Raffles City Shenzhen is part of CapitaLand’s flagship Raffles City integrated development.

The location also comprises a 70,000-sqm mall with more than 200 shops, and a 23-storey office tower, and is designed by world-renowned architecture firm Benoy.

Tan Tze Shang, Ascott managing director for China, said: “Shenzhen is one of the world’s top innovation hubs and home to high-tech companies from all over the world, including new-tech giants such as Huawei, ZTE and Tencent.

“With the addition of Ascott Raffles City Shenzhen, Ascott now has more than 900 units across five serviced residences in one of China’s most competitive cities with high demand for accommodation.



“Out of the five properties, three are in operation while two more will open next year.

“Given its strategic location connecting prominent financial centres, proximity to transportation networks and being part of an integrated development under the iconic Raffles City brand, Ascott Raffles City Shenzhen offers business executives and leisure travellers the convenience of a one-stop work, retail and recreational destination.”

In China, three other properties which are part of the Raffles City-branded integrated developments include Ascott Raffles City Beijing and Ascott Raffles City Chengdu, both of which are already operational, as well as Ascott Raffles City Hangzhou which is slated to open in the third quarter of 2018.

China attracted an investment of US$118 billion last year, and remains the world’s third most attractive destination for foreign direct investment.

In 2016, more than four billion Chinese travelled within the country and 135 million travelled overseas.

As one of China’s top gross domestic product-contributing cities, Shenzhen also invests more than four per cent of its GDP annually in research and development, attracting start-ups and enterprises from innovation-driven industries.

Ascott Raffles City Shenzhen offers guests 182 elegantly furnished apartments ranging from studios to three-bedroom apartments, which come with a well-equipped kitchen, high-quality audio-visual equipment and high-speed wireless internet.

Facilities include an indoor heated swimming pool, breakfast lounge, gymnasium, aerobics room, reading room, sauna room, steam room, children’s play area, and business centre.

Well-equipped meeting rooms provide a conducive environment for seminars and training workshops. Guests can enjoy housekeeping, laundry, dry cleaning and babysitting services.

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