Emirates show-stealing stand takes off at ITB exhibition in Berlin
The 21-ton stand was the biggest aircraft model ever
built inside an exhibition hall. It placed the award-winning Dubai-based
airline on center stage with thousands of influential travel industry
visitors at ITB, the international tourism exhibition in the German capital
On March 7, top German state TV show “Morgenmagazin”
broadcast live from the stand from 5:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m., bringing footage
of Emirates and Dubai to the breakfast TV screens of millions of German
The ‘nose cone’ was covered in see-through gauze to
help visitors visualize the inside of the mighty aircraft. It stood more
than nine meters tall, but was only supported by a single nose wheel -
technically challenging for an exhibition hall with tight limits on floor
Originally intended as a life-sized model of the front
cabin of an Airbus A380, the giant 575-seat double-decker aircraft - which
will form the backbone of Emirates’ fleet for much of this century - had
to be scaled down to 90 percent of its actual size to fit it into Berlin’s
huge Messe exhibition hall.
Mike Simon, Emirates’ corporate communications director
said, “We briefed Pulse Group, our designers, to highlight our
considerable investment in the A380 with a model which would incorporate our
core values of quality, innovation and forward-thinking. The new aircraft
will have two particularly memorable aspects - its enormous size and the two
complete passenger decks running throughout its full length. Our model had
to be as close in size to the real thing as possible to give an impression
of its huge presence.”
The climate-controlled model, built on three floors,
included two kitchens for cabin crew to serve first-class catering, a
fully-networked computer system with Internet links, a DVD-based plasma
display system to broadcast promotional messages around the stand, two
business lounges and a boardroom.
Senior executives from Emirates, Emirates Holidays,
Arabian Adventures, Skywards frequent flyer scheme and Al Maha Desert Resort
were there to brief visitors on the Group’s award-winning products and
Bang Sai Royal Folk Arts
and Crafts Center now
Bangsai Arts and Crafts Village at the Bangsai Arts and
Crafts Center, Ayuthaya was recently introduced as a new tourist attraction.
The center is a village representing four regions of Thailand with examples
of traditional Thai houses, living styles in the olden days, folk arts and
crafts, landscaping and gardening of the four regions of Thailand. This
project has Royal support.
Built and donated to the center by the Tourist Authority
of Thailand (TAT) the center will be a permanent showcase of Thai culture.
The Royal Folk Arts and Crafts Center is under the
Promotion of Supplementary Occupations and Related Techniques (SUPPORT), an
organization under the Royal Patronage of Her Majesty Queen Sirikit.
An annual fair at the end of January highlights the
center’s craft products. A variety of performances enliven the fair.
To get there, take a bus from Bangkok’s Northern Bus
Terminal (telephone 02 272-0299) or take a boat up the Chao Phraya River.
The center is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. daily
except Monday. The admission fee is 20 baht for children (both Thai and
foreigners), 50 baht for Thai adults and 100 baht for foreigners.
Unfortunately, the center has a dual pricing system,
charging foreign visitors double the entry fee for locals. For more
information, call 035 366-092 or 032 225-8165.
THAI profits jump 234 percent
Thai Airways International recorded a 234 percent leap in
net profits for the first quarter of fiscal 2003, with a profit : share
ratio of over 2.5 baht.
The airline’s executive director Kanok Aphiradee said
that profits from sales and service provision for the period
October-December 2002 stood at 6.381 billion baht up 5.475 billion from the
same period the previous year, a staggering increase of 604.2 percent. When
this was added to other income and expenditure the company was left with net
profits of 3.509 billion, up 234.2 percent from the previous year.
Share ratio also soared from 0.75 baht in the first
quarter of fiscal 2002 to 2.5 baht this year.
Unveiling the latest figures, Kanok said that last year
business had been badly affected by fears of global terrorism. “The
improved performance this year is a result of aggressive marketing plans and
an expansion of routes, together with the fact that passengers and tourists
are confident that Thailand is a safe place, and so are visiting Thailand in
increasing numbers. This has resulted in an average passenger carrying rate
of 72 percent for this first quarter,” he said.
Kanok added that while the company has increased its
expenditure in production and transportation, the increase was relatively
low and did not make a significant dent in profits.
TAT opens website for
booking tourism services
The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) in cooperation
with Advance E-commerce Company has launched an online service for travelers
who can now make tour and hotel reservations on its website.
The thailandbooking.com homepage currently offers B2C
(Business to Customer) services to more than 400 entrepreneurs.
Accommodation providers, tour operators, airline
businesses, car rental services are the target groups. TAT’s web-site is
aimed to boost SME operators by allowing payment transactions to be
performed via the Internet.
To cater for the need of worldwide users, a call center
is also on hand to give information and reply to any inquiries from
worldwide business operators.
Khon Kaen gets a facelift
It’s not quite a case of painting the town red, but the
paint pots are out for the northeast city of Khon Kaen in advance of May’s
Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation meetings, with the municipal authorities
offering free painting services for any buildings in the city whose owners
can stump up the paint.
Khon Kaen does not often find itself in the international
limelight, but on May 21-30 it is due to host an official meeting of senior
APEC officials, closely followed by the APEC trade ministers’ meeting on
With over 10,000 people likely to descend on the town for
the two conferences, the municipality decided to do a bit of spring
cleaning. And the finished product will boost tourism to the city long after
the trade ministers have left.
The municipality is busy training 100 painters - mainly
people with low incomes - to decorate buildings across the town. And
what’s more, the services of these painters will come completely free,
with the owners of buildings along the town’s major thoroughfares only
paying for the cost of paint, and the municipality paying all labor charges.
The town is also rushing to improve its overall
appearance, with pride of place going to a new city gate worth 9 million
baht. Twinkling lights on city buildings will cost 1 million baht, while
640,000 baht is being spent on new street signs and 2.2 million baht on new
Khon Kaen Mayor Suraphol Chueachomkul says that city
residents have been called on to ensure that the town is neat and beautiful
to receive its international guests, and has warned local shop owners and
service providers that they must not increase their prices for the