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Issue 130, December 2017

Party Season

Art of Gifting

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December 2017



December 2017

December 2017


Issue 130, December 2017

Family Attitude Class Entertainment Success

Editor’s Note

Say ‘hello’ to the festive month of December, as FACES packs this brand new issue with seasonal cheer and the joie de vivre that winter ushers in. Founder / Essa Bin Mohammed Al Zedjali

Come along and take a long and leisurely look at the joys of this holiday season with articles and features designed to make this season feel all the more special. We have gone all out to pepper this issue with seasonal flavours to perk up your mood for the party season and the New Year celebrations to follow.

Chairman & Editor-in-Chief / Mohammed Issa Al Zedjali Chief Executive Officer / Ahmed Essa Al Zedjali Business Director / Sophia Raman Editorial Consultant / Suzy Fontes Art Director / Pushpender K. Sharma

vents Tur n of E RY cover STO

PB 770, PC 112, Ruwi, Oman Tel: +968 24 811953 . Fax: +968 24 813153 Printed At / Oriental Printing Press Tel: +968 24816952, 24815330

n to be jolly. of-year work It’s the seaso to break the end- r at informal n The seaso hearted bante with lightand pressure friends e office dos. to catch up with over festiv n The seaso family members extended dinners... es and for cloth and es s ping lunch shop ck home n to go n to bede The seaso the seaso ; r. share e chee take gifts to s with festiv come along and and office us, gement with mana t ss lar even If you agree their succe three popu are they share cues from as that s, s head trend company ight the and highl e. mantras party scen rocking the

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Crowning Glory

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We are on Facebook! ‘FACES Magazine, Oman’

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Email - Sales

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For, it is the magical season. The season of sharing and caring… Happy December friends!

and private, cor porate rustic and nts, both “Our clie more towards the nts out are leaning med events,” poi of the Director ht ng agi industrial Lamki, Man throws the spotlig ne Maha Al r, as she ement sce Desert Rive ng event manag rview ngi owing inte on the cha in the foll l ital cap ture renta in the event furni

Contact Telephone +968 24136771/2

Yes, the mood is distinctively festive, as we take you along on a trip that is replete with fun, food and all things nice. And, as the year ends on a high note, remember all things come to those who know how to smile and stay positive.

Special Season’s

Published By / Muscat Media Group

the tempo parties set to unfolds and make a difference to iday season nners As the hol Year, check out howers and party pla e tips for the New as top event manag son and present littl your event, trends for the sea le affair the rab ht mo a me highlig to make it and tricks

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Turn to the cover story to get set for the parties that the season will unfold, with tips and suggestions from event planners in the capital. Check out the fashion ensemble to rock the mood and the interesting twist on modest fashion from a FACES contributor in London. Learn the art of gifting and little tricks to make your house party a memorable one. With party ideas and easy tips injected into the pages, you are sure to find that dash of panache in your year-end parties.

Operations / M.V.V. Sagar

…? ut your hair on? What abo December 2017 the party seas

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in y pull it up ing knot or simpl , wear a top is all about understand let it down ready decide to a your hair party hether you ting look. check out how you get it a complementhis holiday season, a ponytail, and giving going your hair traits the style to get you types: most hair in doubt about that is suitable for If you are here n to yle guide enough reaso erly quick hairst l, you have es disord appea wav those ur e in glamo might perfection g on to its mess thos party, you element of look holdin through the dry There is an all With messy blowyou loose. and waves stays with hair in front e with the let your messy ensure that the look y pull all your more textur to waves…but style intervention. Simpl if required and get finishing spray. a curling wand set the look with a require some to volume. Use it to create e. Don’t forget your choic a diva look. product of back to adopt back look k all your hair the slicked Right, slick in a half slick itgsbac Yes, even hair back for this party…with a curling iron. and pull the spray No partin hair the wave a hair g your curls into and give your spray has Begin by curlincurls. Brush those your ears when the requires somepins to secure hair aboveby pulling off the pins it and follow ponytail. Use the ponytail touch. Open its own … which has dried. Brush y smooth look and shiny waves to this shin for h and c look, go all out those smoot your dry smooth to reserve spray on to up for a classi the should be al protective If you are the mid to nt. The idea ing a therm magic from opening it glamour quotie hair. Start by apply g iron to work the es before your curlin to 15 minut ing spray. the ends of and use a clips for 10 with a finish n your hair sections with . Again, set the style hair. Sectio Secure the brush a hair. of with ends ing the curls up and loosen

W 42

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honed her Raman has things e guru, Sophia flair for all sed lifestyl with a natural ticated socialite * A self profes and fashion sophis . for beauty nt. She is a expertise to this column style quotie and travel distinctive chic and a fashion, style her love for who brings


Copyright 2017 FACES / All material published remains the copyright of FACES. No part of this magazine may be reproduced in whole or in part without the written consent of the publisher. FACES cannot accept responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts, photographs or other material.




FACES Features 12 Cover Story

As the holiday season unfolds and parties set the tempo for the New Year, check out how to make a difference to your event, as top event managers and party planners highlight the trends for the season and present little tips and tricks to make it a memorable affair

18 In The Spotlight

Enjoy the charms of a quaint famers market and indulge your shopping fancy with homemade goodies and organic delights at the seasonal Saturday market - Souq es Sabt

Ahmed Abdul Mawjoud, aka DJ Pharaoh, chats about his career in the business of audio-visual equipment and his growing reputation as a DJ of choice in Muscat

20 In Conversation 22 Centre Stage

- -

The Opera Galleria has announced a new chapter of developments and a calendar of exciting events Avail an opportunity to experience the awe-inspiring services and facilities at the spanking new Muscat International Airport

24 Feast On

Bahriyat at Grand Millennium Hotel Muscat is the destination to frequent if you love seafood in its succulent avatars

26 Let’s Cook

- Feel the festive mood with these easy recipes - Get into the holiday season with some scrumptious recipes from Simran Dhanju

FACES Health

28 Healthy Tiding

Find out what is making news in the world of medicine

FACES Travel

32 Explore Oman

Experience the ‘Ultimate Jabal Activity Wall’ at the breathtaking mountainscape of Jabal Akhdar

34 Just Travel

If you are looking for a perfect holiday destination closer home, check out Maldives and its scenic delights


30 In The Luxe Make this holiday season feel magical for

your loved ones with gifts that defy the clichéd ‘its-the-thought-that-counts’ idiom

36 Look Good

All set for the party season? What about your hair…?

38 Style File - -

For the first time, Omani fashion designers Amal Al Raisi and Buthaina were part of an exciting new concept of modest fashion, at the ‘Modest Fashion Festival’ in London, recently. London based journalist Rabi’ah M. writes about the event and the designers. Forget trends and the fashion dictates; rock this party season in clothes that define your style quotient

FACES Elements 48 At Home It’s that time of the year again…

50 Relatively Speaking Holiday season is incomplete without

indulging in the act of gifting

52 Mandate There is more to party fashion than your

quintessential jacket, accompanied by a formal shirt and tailored pants


44 Season’s Special

Live for today, plan for tomorrow, party tonight…

FACES Razzmatazz 08 Star Light

Dwayne Johnson’s popular epithet, ‘The Rock’, perfectly personifies his physical mien and his emotional fortitude

10 Razzle Dazzle

Latest celebrity gossip from the world of Hollywood

11 Tittle Tattle

Heard through the grapevine...

FACES Digest

58 Movies & Books

Reviews of upcoming movies and books

60 Gadget Notes

Roundup of new gadgets in the market

Largest Lego Flag in the world Oman achieved the World’s Largest Lego Flag Record on 47th National Day at the Oman Avenues Mall. The flag, which took the form of the Sultanate of Oman’s national flag, ended up being 4.12 metres long by 2.33 metres high, and was built entirely from 169,000 standard-size LEGO® bricks. The estimated weight of the final flag was between 480 to 500 kilograms. The flag was built by a professional team of experts from STACK Events, who had started the first stage of the project two days prior to the National Day. They then completed the second and final stage of the project as planned on 18th November, before the officials of the Guinness World Records. Ahmed Gabr, the Guinness World Records official nominated adjudicator, made the announcement that the official attempt was a success thereby rewarding the Guinness World Records record title for the Largest Flag built from LEGO® bricks.

The Bank Beach Club Jebel Sifah has a new landmark for connoisseurs of fine dining. Muriya, in partnership with Urban Hospitality now has The Bank Beach Club, Oman’s new chic hangout, picturesquely located at the tip of the Jebel Sifah Marina. Offering exclusive 360° views of the Omani sea, Al Hajjar Mountains, Jebel Sifah’s marina and stunning beach to its guests, the new Mediterranean-inspired venue sports an al-fresco lounge and restaurant overlooking its stunning signature 500sqm infinity pool lined with sprawling palm trees. With its unique design, that immerses visitors with the ambiance of an island setting, and hospitality management expertise The Bank Beach Club is set to recreate the concept of lifestyle dining in Oman. The new upscale venue boasts an exquisite Greek-style theme with indulgent gourmet cuisine, two bars, an outdoor shisha lounge and VIP terrace. The Bank Beach Club’s highlight is expected to be its stunning 500sqm infinity pool with palm tree islands, featuring a beautiful pool deck with 40 sun beds, and marina views.

Museum of Illusions Opens at MGM A breathtaking new entertainment option has just opened at Muscat Grand Mall. The Museum of Illusion has more than 70 entertaining and mind-bending illusions, and provides interactive educational activities about vision, perception, the human brain, and science. Brought to Oman by Global Development and Investment LLC, the Museum is the first of its kind in the region and includes the largest single collection of optical illusions in the Middle East. It offers intriguing visual and sensory experiences, together with a truly interactive educational range of games, puzzles, and activities, suitable for people of all ages. The Museum of Illusions, which is managed by a young Omani entrepreneur, is situated on the first floor of the new mall expansion. Doors are open from 10 am to 10 pm and entrance fees are priced at RO 4.9 for adults, RO3.5 for children and RO13 for families of 4. Special rates apply for large groups and school excursions.


December 2017

OFC3 Fight Night to Hit Muscat this December Get ready for the biggest fight night in Oman, which will take place at the Barr Al Jissah Amphitheatre on 16th December. Oman Fighting Championship (OFC), the martial arts league in the Sultanate, has unveiled its third annual fight night, OFC3 Battlegrounds. Set to take place on 16th December at the Barr Al Jissah Amphitheatre, this highly anticipated event is expected to draw crowds of up to 1200 people, making it the largest OFC event so far. The event, adjudicated by World Kick Boxing Federation (WKBF) judges and referees, will showcase the best talent in Oman and will serve to bolster the growing popularity of martial arts in the Sultanate. Commenting on the upcoming event, OFC President Baqar Haider said, “OFC3, as promised, will be bigger and better than we’ve ever seen before. The surge in popularity of martial arts in Oman is clear, with an official UFC gym opening earlier this year.” OFC3 follows the success of the previous year, an event that drew maximum capacity crowds and resulted in the crowning of Hussein Jahjah of RX Gym who took out the Middleweight Title and Vinod Kumar of the Oman Kickboxing Club who bagged the Lightweight Title.

Oman’s new corporate training facility With the generous support of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Al Said, Oman recently celebrated the opening of a unique, international standard purpose built training facility in the Sharqiya sands. The centre, operated by Outward Bound Oman, is the first of three slated to be constructed in the coming two years, with the second, in Muscat, due to open in late 2018. The desert centre, which is one of Oman’s first buildings to be totally powered by renewable energy, is already being considered for international architectural awards, and has been designed with multiple user-groups in mind. In addition to challenging and developing talent within the private sector, the centre will be heavily used by groups of young Omanis developing key skillsets, behaviours and toolkits to enable them to successfully enter the world of work. The centre can also accommodate up to 60 people who may want to use it for sustained periods of academic, biological and geographical research.

Shell Oman launches #Journey2Remember Shell Oman’s latest #journey2remember campaign has been launched to celebrate the 47th National Day. The campaign features a classic car that will visit some of Oman’s remarkable landmarks that highlight the Sultanate’s story of growth, progress, and its diverse beauty. Under the #Journey2Remember campaign, Salim al Amri and Hussain Al Bahrani, staff of Shell Oman, will take the 1965 red Corvette and use Shell App to visit 47 Shell service stations starting from Mina Al Fahal Service Station to spread the joy and spirit of the occasion for a week. The journey will cover a number of key touristic and economic landmarks and will be covered on a day-to-day basis on social media channels (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) with the hashtag #Journey2Remember. The journey was launched at a special flag-off ceremony at Shell Development Oman’s office, under the auspices of H.H. Sayyid Fahar bin Fatik Al Said, in the presence of key stakeholders and representatives from Shell.

December 2017


On The


Dwayne Johnson’s popular epithet, ‘The Rock’, perfectly personifies his physical mien and his emotional fortitude


ith his new flick, ‘Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle’, set to hit the screens before Christmas, Dwayne Johnson is, assuredly, upbeat about the upcoming holiday season. His role as Dr. Smolder Bravestone in the sequel/reboot to the 1995 film is expected to bring much needed festive joy to his legion of fans as well as film buffs, who have been waiting for the second outing in the Jumanji series. The first Jumanji film featured Robin Williams as Alan Parrish and, in a show of homage, the new one is said to include a reference to the character. Johnson sees his presence in the new film as an honour to the memory of Williams. He’d said, “It was the opportunity that we had to introduce Jumanji to a whole new generation… It was my personal way of paying homage and respect to the one man who created the Jumanji magic to begin with – Mr. Robin Williams.” Dwayne Douglas Johnson’s tough persona does hide his warm and endearing relationship with his fraternity and his fans. In an Instagram post during the promos

of the film, last month, he recalled meeting Williams for the first time. “I was a star struck bumbling idiot that couldn’t even get my words out… He literally calmed me down with that smile and laugh.” Actor, producer and professional wrestler, Johnson, regarded as one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all times, is humble in his approach to his craft and in his dealings with his fans. He tasted success very early on... It started with the national championship as a college football player for the University of Miami in 1991 - before wrestling happened. It was only in 1995 that he began training for a career in professional wrestling, just like his grandfather and his father, Rocky Johnson. From 1996 to 2004 Johnson gained mainstream fame in the World Wrestling

Federation (WWF, now WWE) and was the first third-generation wrestler in the company’s history. He made a part time comeback between 2011 and 2013 and, even today, does make appearances, on and off, for the company. His wrestling accomplishments include WWF/ WWE Champion – 8 times, WCW/ World Champion – 2 times, WWF Intercontinental Champion – 2 times and WWF Tag Team Champion – 5 times. He is the sixth Triple Crown Champion in WWE and has won the 2000 Royal Rumble. His cinematic success began in 2002, with his first film, ‘The Scorpion King’, for which he was paid US$5.5 million, a world record for an actor in his first leading role. It was his role of Luke Hobbs, in ‘The Fast and the Furious’ franchise that gained him worldwide recognition. In 2016, he was the world’s highest paid actor; the same year Time named him one of the 100 most influential people in the world. What makes Johnson so special is his ability to achieve success in everything that he does. Even his autobiography ‘The Rock Says...’ debuted at No. 1 on ‘The New York Times’ Best Seller list in 2000. As he says, “Success isn’t always about ‘Greatness’, it’s about consistency. Consistent, hard work gains success. Greatness will come.”



Pharrell Williams crowning glory

John Travolta and Kelly Preston headed for a breakup? According to onlookers at an amusement park, where John Travolta took his seven-year-old son Benjamin, the actor looked lost and dejected. He wasn’t accompanied by his wife of 26 years, nor was he wearing his wedding ring. It is rumoured that Kelly had declared to friends that their marriage was over.

The 44-year-old singer/songwriter is wearing a bold new look for the season. He has coloured his mane red and has gotten a cross drawn between his eyes. He was seen sporting the new look, as he went out for dinner with his wife Helen Lasichanh, recently.

Prince George’s Christmas list…

The holiday season is here and the royal family in UK is already getting into the mood. Prince William, who was visiting Esplanade Park’s Christmas market in Helsink, saw Santa Claus ‘ho-ho-ho-ing’ and handed a copy of Prince George’s Christmas list to him. The four-year old Prince George’s Christmas list had only one item – police car. The little prince had not forgotten to put his name at the bottom.

‘Can I say yes now?’

In an interview with the BBC about their engagement, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle revealed some interesting details. According to the couple, the engagement happened at Nottingham Cottage in Kensington Palace and Prince Harry got down on one knee to make his case. But Meghan, it appears, was over excited and wouldn’t let Prince Harry finish – she kept butting in and asking, ‘Can I say yes now?’

Kim Kardashian’s legal dream team

Kim Kardashian is all set to add a new image to her social diva one. She is reportedly putting her high-powered legal team to work to help another incarcerated woman get justice. She has hired attorney Shawn Holley to represent Alice Marie Johnson, 62, who was sentenced to life in prison, two decades ago, for a first-time, non-violent offense. Kim was also involved in providing legal counsel for another woman, recently.


December 2017



“I’m not going to make a movie with Harvey Weinstein. And I’m not going to get paid a third less than my male co-star who has equal experience. If you want to blackball me for that, then okay, but I won’t participate in the disease.” - Jessica Chastain expresses her thoughts on postWeinstein Hollywood and why she won’t be paid less than men.

“It’ll be a great; it’ll be a great show. I’m very excited about it. Every year, apparently a lot of people watch the Super Bowl.” - Justin Timberlake talks about performing at this year’s ‘Super Bowl Halftime Show’ on ‘The Late Show’.

“Kanye came into this business on my label. So I’ve always been like his big brother. And we’re both entertainers. It’s always been like a little underlying competition with your big brother…” - Jay Z speaks about his ‘complicated’ relationship with Kanye West.

“Those characters are experts in the quantum realm. In Ant-Man and the Wasp, they are trying everything in their power to safely enter the quantum realm and return back from it because they have evidence from the first film that Scott Lang was able to do that.” - Evangeline Lilly (aka the Wasp) reveals how the Ant-Man sequel will bend the MCU framework.

“We are just a regular couple, we have been together for seven years and, like any other relationship, you have your ups and downs and nothing is ever perfect - so you make it work.” - Karen Clifton of ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ admits she’s ‘working’ on her marriage to Kevin despite rumours that indicate otherwise. December July 2017


Turn of Events cover STORY

As the holiday season unfolds and parties set the tempo for the New Year, check out how to make a difference to your event, as top event managers and party planners highlight the trends for the season and present little tips and tricks to make it a memorable affair

It’s the season to be jolly. The season to break the end-of-year work pressure with light-hearted banter at informal office dos. The season to catch up with friends and extended family members over festive lunches and dinners... The season to go shopping for clothes and gifts to share; the season to bedeck homes and offices with festive cheer. If you agree with us, come along and take cues from three popular event management company heads, as they share their success mantras and highlight the trends that are rocking the party scene.

“Our clients, both corporate and private, are leaning more towards the rustic and industrial themed events,” points out Maha Al Lamki, Managing Director of Desert River, as she throws the spotlight on the changing event management scene in the capital in the following interview

Maha Al Lamki


December 2017

Tell us about your event furniture rental company… Desert River Oman is a dynamic young company based in Muscat specialising in the rental of designer brands for events and parties, both private and corporate. Originally set-up in January 2004 in Dubai, we decided Oman needed a taste of the modern furniture world so in 2015, Desert River Oman was born. The company has since been very successful in bringing new European quality products, through retail, wholesale and rental operations to the market. Our contemporary products are ideal for event rentals, or to purchase

cover STORY

for homes, offices, hotels commercial projects.


What are the new trends for the forthcoming party season? This season, a number of our clients, both corporate and private, are leaning more towards the rustic and industrial themed events, opting to offer their guests something different to the standard classical look they would usually choose. This theme is taking the décor world by storm, and event companies, corporations and private parties are following suit. Locally, do you see the party season capturing these trends? Overall, our Oman based clients like to keep their events simple and classy, and generally opt for our classical range of white leather sofas and lighting to accommodate. We hope to inspire our current and future clients and help them to make some educated risks without jeopardising the quality of their brand or event. How receptive is the local public to newer ideas and party concepts? Are more and more people relying on professionals to organise their party/event? There are some extremely talented and inspiring event companies available in Muscat, some of who are our biggest clients. We are seeing an increase this season in event furniture rentals, especially in the private party sector. People are, more and more, hosting parties in the comfort of their own homes, as opposed to hiring Photographs from Desert River

out small venues. This could be a combination of the party host saving on venue rental costs or opting for a more intimate setting in their private homes. Are there ready materials/resources to help plan big events or parties? We are predominately an event furniture rental company, but our services extend much further than that. We want our clients’ event to be perfect for them, so we will always assist where possible to help our clients source all the supplies they require for their event. There are an abundance of event planners in Muscat who have their unique speciality; we will always direct our clients to those we think will suit their event best.

What, according to you, is an ideal office party concept? Generally, offices can be quite clinical with neutral colours taking centre stage. If you are providing an informal party for your staff we would recommend our ‘glitterati’ theme, which is one of our collections available on our website. The furniture is fun and over the top and unlike anything you would ever see in a corporate office. What are the dos and don’ts to follow while organising a formal party? Don’t make presumptions that formal should equal boring. Formal event attendees want to have fun and be inspired. Take subtle or small risks and give your guests some décor eye candy. Do plan well in advance. There are always hidden tasks that will creep up on you at the last minute when organising a party. The more organised you are the more you will enjoy the evening itself. Any tips/guidelines to ensure that the party begins and ends smoothly? Be flexible. Your event might not go as you perfectly planned but the main aim is that your guests enjoy themselves.

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Wear Your


Amina Al Zadjali, General Manager of Tiara Events, talks about the growing social media influence in parties, both private and corporate, while highlighting the different facets of event management and party planning in the country

Amina Al Zadjali

To begin, tell us about your event management company… Tiara Events is a fully-fledged event management company, based in Muscat. At Tiara, our slogan is ‘Just wear your smile’, in which we mean for the clients to be stress-free wearing their smile while we take on the hard work in making their event a unique and memorable experience. We offer our clients a strategic approach with meticulous attention to production and details, so that we make their special event elegant, stylish, and glamorous with their input and our creativity put together. We also have our rentals division, which gives on hire chairs, tables, décor items, kids play areas, table décor, party accessories, etc.

What are the new trends for the forthcoming party season? The season is here and everyone is looking at something unique for their party. From the latest movie themes to glamorous colour schemes, the clients love to have them all. Weddings have taken a new turn, where some couples love to create a fairytale white wedding or flower garden, while keeping their traditional activities and ceremonial acts alive. Locally, do you see the party season capturing these trends? Almost all locals and expatriates are online and most of them are heavily into social media. Hence, they discover lot of things online, especially on Pinterest and Instagram. Some of them like us to create the exact the same thing for their event as well. We would say most of our clients will always

Photographs from Tiara Events


December 2017

don’t depend on supplies from the market, though the market is more open than ever before, providing quite a variety of supplies.

Are more people relying on professionals to organise their party/event? When it comes to a basic small party, some prefer to organise it themselves and rely on our rental section. But when it comes to creating a whole new experience from an empty space, garden or a living room, they need professionals to handle it for them. We always give them few options when it comes to venue décor, inspired from our meetings and discussion with the clients. We try to dig deep into concepts to create something unique and different that is tailor-made for the client.

What, according to you, is an ideal office party concept? It really depends on the values that each brand we work with stands for. The best ideas are the one derived from our client’s brand values and concepts. Fun team activities are always a great way to bring office employees together and bring out the fun side in them.

As an event manager, what has been your biggest challenge? It has always the last minute calls. In this field, as any other creative field, we often find ourselves in a situation where last minute inquiries come from our clients. We have some long lasting relations with our clients that were built on support in these kinds of situations. As an events agency, we love to undertake challenges, as we feel accomplished when that particular task is delivered to the satisfaction of the client. Are there ready materials/resources to help plan big events or parties? Our business model, depends to a large scale, on customisation, adding uniqueness to each event; hence we

With most people preferring to organise open house parties rather than elaborate dinners, would you say the party trend is moving towards more casual affairs? Most of the people like informal gathering to formal ones, as it’s easy and there are no hard and fast rules on dress code. Of course, it all depends on what exactly they like their event to be. Many corporate firms still prefer the formal dinners for their important annual functions, than casual. What are the dos and don’ts to follow while organising a formal party? Do’s: l Select a right venue l Select a theme l Prepare a final guest list/number of guests l Put up a budget for the event l Have options for entertainment and choose the correct entertainment l Have a seating plan

l l l l

Venue decor and other elements like stage, backdrop and AV requirement list Draw up an agenda for the event Logistics for the event set up and removal after the event Have a pre-event calendar with set dates for each of the tasks

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have their theme in mind with some inspirational images to start with. This helps us to deliver what they require to a greater extend.

Don’ts l Get late - for the event set up and on the event date l Wait for the last minute to prepare the items for the event l Panic for any last minute mishaps; instead, find and be geared for immediate alternative solutions l Propose any new item to the event if it’s not available on the required date. l In general do not promise anything to the client, if you cannot deliver it. Any tips/guidelines to ensure that the party begins and ends smoothly? We always like to make sure that the set up and the venue preparations are done at least 2 to 3 hours before the event starts. At the same time, we have a formal agenda of the event with precise timings and another with the full flow of the event for our internal support staff to see what comes next and who does what for each item of the agenda/programme, so that they will prepare the particular performers or items well ahead and keep them ready. Sometimes, the bigger events and shows get rehearsed few times before the event start time.

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At the heart of things Technology is the biggest trend in event management business, opines Sukaina Haider Moosa, Managing Director of Suza Events “It is not just about printed flex banners anymore. Things are changing…” observes Sukaina Haider Moosa, MD of Suza Events, as she talks about the shifting event management horizon in the country. Clients are seeking newer and modern styles and creative twists in their parties/events, she maintains, pointing out that technology is emerging as the biggest trend in putting an even together. This, however, places the onus on being innovative in every aspect of the event, which Suza is equipped to handle, she adds. Suza Events, which has grown in strength and stature, since it began operations over 7-years ago as a one-man show, has its presence in the neighbouring Dubai and Abu Dhabi, and has to its credit shows and exhibitions in Qatar, Al Ain and Berlin. It was Sukaina’s love and passion for organising events that has helped her shape the fortunes of her company. Recalling those early days, she says, “I worked day and night, putting everything together in a very small office, which is turned into my store now. But I believe it is not where you started from that is


December 2017

Sukaina Haider Moosa important; it is about what you want to be and where you want to reach.” It was her passion for creativity and her determination to keep abreast the international and Dubai markets that helped her propel Suza to its current position. Her eyes are trained on the global scenario when it comes to research and survey, which have helped her constantly upgrade the success quotient. “I have always been studying the latest trends in the market, especially when it comes to technology in events,” she maintains. Towards this end, Sukaina also attends event management shows along with team members, to get a grip on things happening around the world.

Team work

Having understood the importance of enlisting right team members to handle various aspects of event management, she did not think twice about expanding her team and hiring professionals, even when others in the market were shying away from the prospect, owing to a slowdown in the economy. “We were always positive and always optimistic that things would happen in our favour, and Oman will always be growing... And that is exactly what is happening. We are not only working in the local market, but we have projects running in Abu Dhabi and in Dubai.We also did an exhibition in Al Ain, recently, wherein we had 63 exhibitors at a five-day exhibition. It was very successful; I was also showcased in Ain

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Al Emirate magazine. Recently, we did the Levante Maserati launch in Oman, which was the best in the region and, consequently, we were selected to do it also in Qatar. We are the only, rather one of the few event companies that has so much experience out of the country,” she explains. With operations in Dubai since the last two years, they have no problems in sourcing materials, even at the last minute. According to her, it is the family bonding that she has established with her team mates that has helped her carve a niche in the local as well as the regional market. “I ensure that they are happy, but I do put them under pressure when it comes to work. I am a tough, but flexible boss,” she quips. Talking about Suza’s business portfolio, she says, “Our core business is corporate events. But we do high-end weddings and private parties, as we are looking at niche audience. We cannot take most of the wedding requests due to their budget constraints.” This is especially disconcerting, she adds, when clients demand creative ideas, but aren’t willing to match the money involved. The challenge, however, is when clients require proposals in a day, not realising that presenting concepts and creative ideas requires time. It becomes overtly stressful when the actual scope of work is changed at the last minute, she adds.

Event guidelines

Calling herself a taskmaster, she says being strict and following it through with the plan/schedule of the event is key for the success. Her other guidelines include creating technical drawings to apprehend the requirements and ensure they are produced in the way it was planned, followed by cleanliness. “Often, cleaning of the venue is forgotten by the agency handling the event. Even before the show starts, it is important to supervise cleanliness of, say the panels used, as they usually come from the workshop with the dust intact. It is these little details that make the difference in any event,” she states.

Holiday season

Celebrating different festivals, no matter where you come from, is what Sukaina believes in personally; one that she has incorporated in her professional conduct too. Whether it is the Prophet’s birthday or Christmas, putting up decorations in the office, organising fun contests is great, she

notes, pointing out that they even had group dance competitions among the staff of Suza for an earlier festival. Colourful decorations have a way of spreading cheer; even slight change in the office décor and setup can do wonders to the team morale, she opines, adding to that little gifts or goodies to create positivity among the employees. This can be applied to home parties too. Talking about her plans for the Prophet’s birthday, she says, “We will have a lot of green décor and red flowers around; we will buy prayer mats for everybody in the house and have a special festive meal with family and friends… even sing some inspirational songs to remind our children of the special day. This concept can be taken to any festival, like Christmas with tree, gifts and special lunch.” Sukaina truly believes that if you look at things in a beautiful way it will turn beautiful and it will help you grow

Photographs from Suza Events

December 2017



Souq es Sabt

Enjoy the charms of a quaint famers market and indulge your shopping fancy with homemade goodies and organic delights at the seasonal Saturday market - Souq es Sabt


aturdays have become extra special with the onset of the new season of Souq es Sabt (SeS) at Al Mouj Muscat. The Souq has opened up exciting options to shake off the weekend ennui and shop in an ambience that has been deliberately crafted to capture the old world charm of markets run by producers/ manufacturers of the products on sale. But, if you are looking to while away your time, think again... For Souq es Sabt is not an exhibition. As Sara Majeed Alasfoor, Founder of Souq es Sabt, states, albeit with a cautionary note, “We are a one-of-a-kind local market, NOT an exhibition!�


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How did the idea of SeS come about? Who or what was your inspiration? It is inspired by my children, Jena and Hamed who were four and three years old at the time. After a visit to a farmers’ market in Europe, they were amazed at the number of stalls and asked me, “Why don’t we have this in Oman”. I explained to them, at the time, that all the stalls had products and things made by the people selling them - whether it was dairy, breads, meats, food, even handmade dolls and clothing and furniture. What struck me in that town was the fact that a lot of the little shops, cafés, and deli’s were, once upon a time, vendors in the local farmers market (that town was famous for hosting the largest annual market in Europe each summer). Could you trace the growth of SeS since its inception? SeS started ‘organically’, in every sense of the word. From making organic homemade pesto to using organic home-grown basil leaves… my daughter suggested we make the pesto and sell it! From then on, Jena’s Gourmet Kitchen was born, an idea that my husband and I had been floating since she was little. Following the pesto making bonanza, Jena thought that merely setting up a table and chair in the middle of our living room, would mean she could

‘sell’ to ‘people’. Mom had to ‘invite’ family and friends over to buy from Jena, after securing some orders for the pesto, so Jena could deem her shop successful. Capitalising on the footfall generated, Hamed decided to sell lemonade. A few weekends of the happening in our house, we had friends and neighbours setting up tables all around our living room, and before we knew it, there were 60 people coming in and out of our house to buy homemade sauces, bakes and lemonade! We decided to take our little ‘market’ of 3 stalls, which quickly turned to 5, into a neighbourhood park. Within weeks, we had up to 10 stalls setting up their tables and tents under the trees, all around the grass. We quickly outgrew that space and were adopted by Al Mouj Golf, where the second season of SeS officially began. Back then, we had 15 stalls and were open every other week of the month. The year after, we moved to The Walk, in Al Mouj Muscat, and started with the market almost double in size – we have been growing ever since. It is worth mentioning that Jena and Hamed are still making and selling pesto and lemonade! What is the basic premise behind the Souq? Our ethos is local; locally sourced or locally made… Since we support multicultural diversity, we ask vendors to offer in country value to any items not made in Oman. Other than that, we consider ourselves an entrepreneur’s

haven, where small businesses and new ventures can be tried and tested, marketed and known. Could you highlight the Souq’s unique features? We are a one-of-a-kind local market, NOT an exhibition. We are different in that we are outdoor and seasonal, so only in operations when the weather is decent. SeS works towards an economic objective, promoting socio-economic growth, promoting internal tourism as well as external for all the visitors coming into Oman during this time of year. We empower youth, women, and entrepreneurs in general, and have a successful track record of supporting the conversion of multiple businesses from the stalls to becoming a real business establishment.


In the following interview, Sara talks about her inspiration to initiate SeS in Oman and highlights its features and objectives.

Who are the people it engages with? SeS is a community event with multi-fold engagement - from the vendor community, to the residential community within which we are hosted, extending to the entire Muscat and beyond. This year, we have participants from Al Dhahira and Batinah regions and one joining from Buraimi next session. Yes, these people are driving for hours every Saturday to join us as members of our vendor community. We are humbled by the support of Al Mouj Muscat, and the entire community in Muscat for their support. The Government, namely the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, have extended their support to us as well, by paving the way for markets as such to operate on a city scale. Are there any guidelines/criteria for becoming a part of the souq? Yes, every prospect is initially screened before given an application to apply. They must meet certain standards and criteria to qualify. Generally speaking, how big is the souq culture in Oman? The Souq culture in Oman is a traditional one; it has existed for hundreds of years. We have, for example, the Gold Souq in Muttrah, Muttrah Souq itself, a Friday Souq in Wadi al Kabir, not to mention the famous Nizwa Souq every Friday. Surely, there are many more across the regions. SeS is a local souq with a twist; as Muscat is an international city, we chose to have a local representation with a global presence

* Sara Alasfoor is a mother of 3 lovely children - Jena, Hamed and Meriam. She is a technologist by profession, with two degrees in IT, a bachelors of Business Administration majoring in Information systems Technology and a Masters of information systems - 12 year career tenure between Oracle Corporation, Dell Inc and SAP. She is now an entrepreneur, taking SeS on full time.

December 2017



Prime Time with DJ Pharaoh

Ahmed Abdul Mawjoud, aka DJ Pharaoh, chats about his career in the business of audio-visual equipment and his growing reputation as a DJ of choice in Muscat It started with a call: ‘Ahmed, could you bring your CD case and come along? We are not able to reach our DJ...’ Looking back on that day, in 2003, Ahmed can clearly see that it opened the path for his dormant passion for DJing. “That was my ignition…my ignition to get into DJing,” muses Ahmed Mawjoud, as he recalls the day he was asked by a friend to bring along his music collection to stand in for another DJ. That was the day Ahmed donned his DJ Pharaoh garb to establish his credentials in the land of Disc Jockeys. He wasn’t a total novice though. His early tryst with music, during college years in the late 90s in Egypt, did prep him up, in a way, for his DJ days. “Those were the college days when music was a craze. We used to organise trips to beaches, which were in the outskirts of the city. It took us a couple of hours or more by bus to reach the beach, where we would play music the whole day…” he reminisces. Soon he was playing DJ at private parties, weddings and at night clubs, but they were sporadic,


December 2017

as he was busy finding his foothold in the employment horizon, which brought him to Oman in 2003. It was a homecoming for Ahmed, who was raised and schooled here until 1995, when his father retired and left the country for good. His father was employed in Muscat and for Ahmed, returning back after college and military service, seemed like a natural thing to do. Things took time to fall in place, but he managed to give his passion for music a channel, while finding a right break for his career. Today, he lives in Oman with his wife and their three children, and his bonds with the country have become all the more stronger. Two years ago he joined Bright Lights Trading, an audio-video solutions company with business in lighting, automation and integration, to handle sales, and has, since, realised that his interests lie in growing businesses that are parallel, rather complementary to DJing. At present he has back-to-back DJ events during the weekends, which will, expectedly peak during the festive December month. Party scene in Muscat is picking up, notes Ahmed, but hastens to add that DJing is simply

not about playing music to get the crowd on to the dance floor. “Music lovers today are aware of every new song release and they keep following up on new music trends. There are different types of music and different mentalities...success as a DJ depends on the way you interact with the people even without talking. You need to have an insight into where the night is going. What to play when is very important; so is the selection of music and the mixing techniques used while creating mash-ups,” he explains. This also means constantly updating oneself about the new advances in the digital field. However, Ahmed does not see himself DJing five years down the line. He, nevertheless, is keen on initiating a business venture in a related field. As he puts it, “I see future in the AV business. With smart buildings and automation becoming a trend, audio-visual is the way to promote everything. Eventually, I hope to have a business in this line here or back home.” DJ Pharaoh, who calls Oman his first home, attributes his success in the growing arena of DJing to the support of friends and well wishers.

DJ Pharaoh The home I grew up in... Cairo, Egypt. When I was a child I wanted to… Be an engineer. The moment that changed me forever... When my first child, my daughter Nour, was born. My greatest inspiration... My mother. Although she was a housewife, she was the spark in our family. My hero… My Father. He went above and beyond for the welfare of our family. I want to be like him. If I could change one thing about myself... I am happy with what and who I am.

I dream of... Seeing my kids succeed in life and doing better than me. What I see when I look in the mirror... I see what others see - I am a very transparent person and everybody knows it. It’s not fashionable but I like... BBQ place at Ghubra Beach. My greatest regret... That I quit my dream of being an engineer and took the second option. I should have tried harder. You may not know it but I’m no good at... Cooking. I never lived as a single person - my family was around me most of the time. You may not know it but I’m very good at… Socialising. I get along with people from different races and different countries, thanks to DJing. This career keeps introducing me to new and different people everyday. If I have time to myself... I will go to the gym (have kept saying that for several years). My house is... Where my family is. My favourite haunt/holiday destination... I haven’t travelled much, but I like Dubai’s entertainment options.


Up Close & Personal With

My favourite weekend spot in Oman… Any pool side with my family. I will not leave my house without… Phone, wallet, car keys, sunglasses and saying ‘bye’ to the kids. Five things I like about Oman… People, ambience, security, nature and, of course, the roads. On top of my wish/bucket list is... Travel the world with my family. My success mantra is… ‘Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.’ – John Lennon. This quote sums up the struggle in life and how we need to be optimistic. In 10 years’ time, I hope to be... Remembered as a successful person.

December 2017


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A new chapter of developments at Opera Galleria The Opera Galleria has announced a new chapter of developments and a calendar of exciting events


ew developments are underway at the Opera Galleria to present an enhanced experience for all Muscat residents. The mall has welcomed the opening of Chanteclair Café and is looking forward to two new exciting additions, due to be announced soon. The lure of these excellent dining options contributes to Opera Galleria’s reputation as the weekend lifestyle destination of choice within the Sultanate. Among the new retail additions to the mall are the acclaimed Doro Fashion - the beautiful abaya fashion house, known for its unique and original pieces, and the magical boutique store of Walid Attalah, the Middle East’s dream bridal designer. As a stamp of standard and for the added convenience of Opera Galleria’s costumers, Bank Dhofar

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is opening its prestigious Al Riadah premium banking branch at the mall. Importantly, a lease has just been signed to include Al Qurum Jewelry to the extensive range of shops. There is no doubt that the Galleria boasts an excellent range of perfume, jewelry and watch concessions, some of the finest quality products in Oman. The extent of the choice available is a special attraction for visitors. Another characteristic of the mall is the wing dedicated to beauty, spa and wellbeing services. A truly special place to relax and enjoy the attention of beauty professionals dedicated to your needs. The Paris Gallery flagship store features as strong focal point in the mall and offers a wide range of luxury items from skincare products to leather goods. In addition to the luxury brands, Opera Galleria is proud of its shops which support local handicraft production. The Omani heritage is rich in beauty and tradition and the

shops reflect this cultural diversity. Locally designed silverware, Omani heritage items and the highest quality luban perfumed products make the Opera Galleria the place to visit for truly special items, for gifts and for unique homeware. The Royal Opera House Muscat gift shop is also in the mall, with specially sourced souvenirs connected to the season of productions performed at the opera house. In an innovative and fitting collaboration with Royal Opera House Muscat, Opera Galleria has launched a new season of ‘Lunch Music’ engagements. Professional musicians, in Muscat to perform at ROHM, will use the magnificent galleria to showcase excerpts from the touring production. The next lunch music event will take place on the 2nd December with artists from ROHM’s The Moth Princess. Opera Galleria is truly establishing itself as the cultural and lifestyle heartbeat of Muscat.

Want to avail an opportunity to experience the awe-inspiring services and facilities at the spanking new Muscat International Airport?


og on to www. to register for the trials #JoinTheTrials – and enjoy an up close and personal experience of the new Muscat International Airport. Simply click the ‘register now’ button to fill in your details to be one of the 17,000 community members expected to partake in the trials. When you register for ‘Join the Trials’, you will be able to select a preferred date from those available, as there is a limit to the number of Trial Passengers on each day. Following that, the team will contact you by email, before the Trial, to confirm your registration. On the said day, you will be given a role to play, as if you were a real passenger: you will be given a ‘booking’, with a destination, checked in, processed through immigration and security, and back again. There will, of course, be no actual flights or aircraft involved; the trials team will also provide you with ‘bags’. The ‘Join the Trials’ campaign, which began with roadshows in prominent locations, including Oman Avenues Mall, Muscat and Qurum City Centers and Muscat Grand Mall, comes on the heels of the last phase of trials, undertaken by the Operational Readiness and Airport Transfer

(ORAT) at the new Airport. After successful completion of a series of internal technical, logistical and airport management operations among the internal stakeholders, ORAT has entered the last phase of trials. In this last stage of ORAT, as part of the end user experience trials, the Oman Airports Management Company (OAMC) has launched its national campaign, ‘Join The Trials’ to attract residents of Oman to join the final stage of the project. This campaign is aimed at reviewing and assessing if real time experience of customers and operations are in line with the requirements. Speaking about conducting the ORAT trials with the public, Saud bin Nasser bin Said Al-Hubaishi, General Manager of Readiness, OAMC, said, “Today, the Muscat International Airport development is the largest project ever undertaken in the history of Oman. We are excited to be part of the journey and introduce the public to what we believe will be the gateway to opportunity.” The trials will welcome over 17,000 members of Muscat’s community to explore the new Airport and participate in the ORAT customer experience trials. With the involvement of the public, the

trials will provide live assessment opportunity for the ORAT team. “Our mission, together with the support of the public, is to bring the best airport experience to life, to make it memorable for locals and expats alike. The trials are part of the vision ‘to be among the top 20 airports in the world by 2020’,” said Pablo Lorenz, Trials Manager of OAMC.

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Join The Trials

Key stakeholders supporting the public roadshow and ORAT trials include the Ministry of Transport and Communications for investing and managing on infrastructure development project, Public Authority of Civil Aviation – PACA for developing a safe vibrant air hub, Royal Oman Police – ROP for maintaining airport security, and the national carrier Oman Air for making Muscat International Airport their international hub. The trials are also intended to test all systems and facilities, procedures and personnel under real operational conditions – which allows for a comprehensive analysis and mitigation of potential problems well in advance of the opening day. Once fully operational the new Muscat International Airport will have a capacity to handle 20million passengers annually.

December 2017


feast ON

Seafood at its best Bahriyat at Grand Millennium Hotel Muscat is the destination to frequent if you love seafood in its succulent avatars

Bread basket with special dips

Bahriyat, meaning ‘fruits of the sea’, vividly encapsulates the spirit of the sea and its underwater bounty. While remnants of the sea give the walls a picturesque oceanic touch, it is what comes to the table that makes Bahriyat a must-visit seafood restaurant. The flow of diners, even on a weekday, is proof enough of its growing popularity as one of the best seafood restaurants. The dinnerware, emulating seashells in varied incarnations, are crafted to imbue the sea mood on to every aspect of the restaurant. The restaurant also has an impressive 12-seater ‘Captain’s Table’, which is curtained in thin wire mesh to give it a feel of exclusivity. Diners here get the head chef’s special bespoke menu and exclusive service. But that’s not to deny other guests the taste appeal of Bahriyat, which is contemporary in its approach and very local in its menu - Omani flavours infused with a modern twist in plating and presentation. The menu is crafted to pamper every seafood lover’s palate. ‘Captain’s Table’


ressed in cool blue hues of the sea and the sky, the picturesque Bahriyat restaurant, at the imposing Grand Millennium Hotel Muscat, is a treat for the eyes - from the façade crested with marine elements to the warm glow inside, rolled out in an eye-catching aquatic theme. It’s a beachcomber’s paradise, capturing the rich allure of a treasure chest found on the ocean bed. Even little blue lamps on the tables, with jellyfish miniatures hanging in each one, evoke an underwater sequence, giving the soft overhead lights a mystical touch.


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Its visual representation of the marine theme, alongside fingerlicking dishes, is seamlessly complemented by the friendly staff, who know just how to make your dining experience special. Our gastronomical sea fare featured a selection of Bahriyat’s signature seafood delights, which, we were told, come straight from the Gulf of Oman. The taste, indeed, lies in its fresh appeal, which, with seafood, is a must to get things right. Having tucked into most of the popular dishes on the menu, we can vouch for the taste factor with the fresh appeal enhancing it. Our Bahriyat tryst began with the complimentary breadbasket, accompanied with three special dips, rather spreads packed with cashew nuts, dry fish and olives. The cashew nuts spread is rich and the olives are yummy, but the dry fish one requires a

Grilled Seafood Platter

cultivated palate. The amuse-bouche for the evening was salmon maki roll with tomato foam. Our seafood encounter was just beginning, as our table got stocked up with a twosome soup deal - the Harees lobster soup. It is served with the soup in a separate bowl, showcasing the food grandeur of harees and lobster in another. You simply pour the soup on to the harees, accompanied with chilli paste and lemon wedges, to devour the softly cooked harees and the chunks of lobster. And then came the salads – an array of seafood in delightful combinations. We had Classic Trio – a combination of Kasha Salad, Dried Shark Salad and Calamari Salad; Crab Salad, packed with fresh avocado, green chilli and tomato served with pita bread; and Cuttlefish Salad – Rocca salad, onion, fried cuttlefish with kasha fish dressing. For a seafood lover, there could be nothing more divine than finding ones favourite fish even in a salad. The crab salad is creamy and a melt in the mouth affair, while the cuttlefish variety, with its crispy fried pieces of cuttlefish, is a complete meal in itself. We devoured the salad with the gusto of a hungry diner.

Our mains were as elaborate as the soup and the salads. The Grilled Seafood Platter, a large dish featuring a combination of grilled tuna, salmon, prawns and cuttlefish completely overtook our table and overwhelmed us with its size and variety. And the taste… Amazing. The Kingfish Kabuli Sama looks like an oversized bun as it comes covered in baked dough. When the sheath is sliced, it opens to flavoured basmati rice cooked with kingfish and Omani spices. We also had a taste of Omani style Salmon – salmon stew and potatoes served with cucumber pickle, coriander, onion and sumac with steamed rice. Our generous hosts got us to taste their signature desserts – Cheese Kunafa and Um Ali ‘Surprise’. The kunafa featured a base of mild, stretchy white cheese with a topping of rich semolina pastry soaked in sweet rosewater syrup, while the Um Ali, which came in six mini bowls, proved to be an extravaganza of flavours, as each bowl was infused with different flavours – saffron, cardamom, cinnamon, rose water and vanilla. To state the obvious, we followed the foodie note – ‘sea food and eat it’. Burp to that! Classic Trio salad

Salmon maki roll with tomato foam

December 2017


let’s COOK

Let’s cook up a party

Cheese Straws Ingredients

Black Bean and Corn Salad Ingredients l l l l l l l l l

Canned black beans (drained and rinsed) - 2cups Canned corn (drained) - 2cups Red onion (chopped) - 1/3cup Fresh cilantro (chopped) - 1/4cup Lime juice - 3tbsp Olive oil – 1tsp Salt - 1/2tsp Ground cumin - 1/2tsp Ground pepper - 1/8tsp


1. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and chill overnight. 2. Serve as needed.

l l l l l l l

Frozen puff pastry (defrosted overnight in the fridge) - 2 sheets Large egg - 1 Freshly grated parmesan cheese - ½ cup Finely grated gruyere cheese - 1 cup Fresh thyme leaves (minced) - 1tsp Kosher salt – 1tsp Freshly ground black pepper

Method 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Roll out the puff pastry sheets on a lightly floured board until it’s 10 by 12 inches. Beat the egg and brush the surface of the pastry. Sprinkle each sheet evenly with the parmesan, gruyere, thyme, salt and pepper. With the rolling pin, lightly press the flavourings into the puff pastry. Cut each sheet crosswise with a floured knife or pizza wheel into 11 or 12 strips. Twist each strip and lay on baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until lightly browned and puffed. Turn each straw and bake for another 2 minutes. Cool and serve at room temperature.

Deviled Eggs Ingredients

l l l l l l l l l

Large eggs – 8 Mayonnaise – 3tbsp Sour cream – 3tbsp Canned chipotle pepper (chopped) – 1tsp Cider vinegar – 1tsp Curry powder - ¼tsp Salt - 1/8tsp Chopped fresh herbs (parsley, basil and/or chives) – optional Paprika – 1tsp


1. Place eggs in a large saucepan, add enough cold water to cover the eggs by 1 inch and bring to a rapid boil over high heat. Remove from heat, cover and let stand for 15 minutes before draining. 2. Peel the egg shells and cut the eggs in half, lengthwise. Remove the yolks and keep the whites aside. 3. In a food processor, combine yolks, mayonnaise, sour cream, chipotle pepper, vinegar, curry powder and salt. 4. Transfer the filling to a pastry bag with a large round or open star tip; you could also use a re-sealable plastic bag with a small bit of the corner snipped off. 5. Pipe the yolk mixture neatly into egg white halves. Transfer eggs to a serving platter. Cover and chill until serving time (up to 24 hours). 6. To serve, sprinkle eggs with paprika and fresh herbs.


December 2017

let’s COOK

Feasts are made of these… Get into the holiday season with these scrumptious recipes from Simran Dhanju

Kaju (cashew nuts) Rolls Ingredients: (Serves: 4-6) l Potatoes - 500gms l Cashew nuts, coarsely chopped - 100gms l Stale breadcrumbs - 1 cup l Onion, finely chopped - 1 small l Green chilli, finely chopped – 1to 2 l Red chilli powder - ¼ tsp l Coriander powder - ½ tsp l Coriander leaves, finely chopped - 2 tbsp l Oil - for deep frying l Plain flour - 4 tbsp l Water - ½ cup l Salt - to taste Method 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

Boil the potatoes with skin on. Peel and mash them. In a bowl, put the mashed potatoes, onions, green chillies, red chilli, coriander powder, salt and fresh coriander leaves. Mix them well. Take a level tablespoon of potato mix and shape it into a croquette. Mix flour and water with a pinch or two of salt and make a smooth batter. In a bowl, mix cashew nuts and breadcrumbs together. Now, dip the croquettes in flour batter; roll them in breadcrumbs and cashew nut mix. Place croquettes on tray; cover, refrigerate for 30 minutes. Deep fry croquettes in hot oil until golden brown. Drain on absorbent paper. Serve hot with mint chutney.

Mutton Seekh Kebab Ingredients

(Serves: 4-6) l Lamb or mutton mince - 500gms l Onion, finely chopped - 1 medium l Green chillies, finely chopped - 2-3 l Fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped - 2tbsp l Fresh mint leaves, finely chopped - 2tbsp l Garlic paste - 2tsp l Ginger paste - 1tbsp l Garam Masala (spice mixture) -1tsp l Cumin powder - 1tsp l Red chilli - ½tsp l Egg - 1 l Salt - to taste l Oil - 2tbsp

To Serve

l Chat masala - 1tbsp l Lemons - 2 l Preparation time: 20-25 minutes


1. Mix mutton or lamb mince, onions, green chillies, coriander and mint leaves and grind it to a fine consistency. 2. Now mix ginger and garlic paste, garam masala, cumin powder, red chilli, egg, salt and a tablespoon of oil in the mutton mince mixture. Keep in refrigerator for 30 minutes. 3. Divide the mixture into equal portions. 4. Thread the mince mixture on skewers by applying water on your hands. 5. Cook the skewers either in preheated oven at 250°C or on the electric grill or griddled pan on stove. 6. Baste it with oil in between and cook on all sides until completely done. 7. Sprinkle with some chat masala and lemon juice and serve hot with mint yoghurt chutney.

Simran is a celebrated chef and a winner of multi cooking competitions; she creates visual delights artfully by merging traditional flavours.

December 2017



Long term negative effects from disordered eating A recently concluded study has found that disordered eating among young adults has long-term effects on their health. The study, which focused on 24-year-old women and men, learnt that disordered eating was an indicator of higher body weight, larger waist circumference and lower psychological wellbeing, as well as a lower self-evaluation of general health - at age 24 and even ten years later. Eating is said to be disordered when a person makes random decisions about being hungry or full, regardless of how they are feeling; it also applies to people who weigh themselves constantly or drink non-caloric drinks to keep from feeling hungry. Meticulous planning of each meal long into the future; counting calories and weighing foods; following an excessively strict diet or cutting certain foods from diet for health or ethical reasons, when the real motivation is weight loss, are also classified as disordered eating.

PTSD among cancer survivors Post-traumatic stress disorder, which commonly afflicts war veterans and assault victims, has its effects on cancer survivors too. A new research has shown that the trauma of a cancer scare often leaves survivors with the condition. Researchers tracked outcomes for 469 adults with different types of cancer and learnt that nearly 22 percent had symptoms of PTSD six months after their cancer diagnosis; about 6 percent still had the condition four years after diagnosis. They noted that many patients live in fear that their cancer will return, and many believe that any lump or bump, pain or ache, fatigue or fever indicates a return of the disease. This disorder could have an impact on cancer scare as some survivors tend to skip follow-ups to avoid triggering memories of the earlier experience.

Depression in family According to a new study, having a father with depression might put teens at a heightened risk for the mental health problem. While previous research had linked depression in mothers and in their children, this study found such an association between fathers and their children, whether the mother has depression or not. The study hopes the findings would help reduce depression later in life, as the rate of depression is said to rise sharply at the start of adolescence. The mental health of both parents should be a priority for preventing depression among adolescents, say researchers.

Do not shame overweight kids Shaming might only make things worse‌ For a group of paediatricians has found that overweight kids who are shamed or stigmatised are more likely to binge eat or isolate themselves than make any attempt to lose weight. Generally, people tend to think that by shaming an overweight person or child they can help motivate them to make healthy changes in their lives. On the contrary, it could worsen the situation by making children less likely to be physically active or to seek health care; it may also lead to binge eating and social isolation.


December 2017

healthy TIDINGS

Asthma patients advised to wear scarves People suffering from asthma are advised to wear scarves over their nose and mouth to prevent asthma attacks during the cold winter season. According to health experts, breathing in cold, damp air can make the airways tighten and trigger an attack, causing coughing, wheezing and gasping for breath. Although the scarf is not a replacement for asthma medicines, it can help reduce the impact of the weather on asthma, especially in cold countries.

Quick-fix slimming pills are dangerous Don’t fall prey to quick fix weight remedies, warn researchers who found that slimming pills bought online are ‘potentially dangerous’ and can cause serious health problems. In a survey of 1,800 people on slimming aids, the researchers found that most had bought their pills online without seeking advice from their GP. The side-effects from such quick fix remedies were found to include heart problems, blurred vision and diarrhoea. The study also found that some pills contain banned ingredients.

Early baldness linked to higher heart disease risk Male pattern baldness and premature greying are said to be risk factors for heart disease in men under the age of 40. A new research has found that early baldness is more of a risk factor than obesity. The study, which covered over 2000 young men showed that the majority of them who had coronary artery disease were prematurely bald or grey than men with a full head of hair. This calls for modifications in the lifestyle and risk factors such as high cholesterol and blood pressure. These are far more important things to consider.

Coffee is good?

As studies and counter studies continue to recommend and argue against coffee, a new study has found that three cups of coffee a day may actually be beneficial for health. Although too much coffee during pregnancy could be harmful and coffee cannot be classified as a health drink, the study also found that moderate consumption of coffee could lower risk of liver disease and a lower risk of dying from stroke. Researchers advise coffee drinkers to stick to ‘healthy coffees’, which avoid extra sugar, milk or cream, or a fatty snack on the side.

December 2017


in the LUXE

Gift stories Make this holiday season feel magical for your loved ones with gifts that defy the clichéd ‘its-the-thought-that-counts’ idiom

Clock up

Here is a gift for that someone special whose streak for punctuality is legendary. Clock Clock 24 is a statement piece that is both a kinetic sculpture and a functioning clock. In it, twenty four round clocks are united to create one giant digital display. Its hands are choreographed and it can be set for 12 or 24 hour format in three (minimal, medium and elaborate) different modes to add movement between the minutes. Price: $6,000

A ball of yarn

Not just any ball of yarn… This silver deal is from Tiffany, who makes jewellery for savvy buyers. In its everyday items gift collection, Tiffany has created a limited edition ball of yarn that is hand spun with strands of sterling silver. It could prove to be a perfect gift for a friend who appreciates the art of turning everyday items into masterpieces. Price: $9,000

Caffeine cache

Give your coffee addict friend a gift that says you care. The Giga X7 Professional automatic coffee centre is designed to enhance the pleasure of sipping coffee. With the combined power of two grinders, two heating systems, two pumps and two fluid systems in a user friendly set, the Giga X7 can make 28 beverages, including lattes, cappuccinos and macchiatos. It can brew an entire pot of coffee within 2½ minutes. Price: $8,999


December 2017

Going to work on bike may not seem practical, in this part of the world, but with the weather gradually feeling like winter and the weekends opening up avenues for the outdoors, the Townie Commute Go bike might prove to be a perfect gift for someone who loves to soak up fresh air. The battery-powered bike has ‘pedal assist’ and can be customised with a range of accessories to make it more comfortable. It can go up to 20mph and each charge can go for 100 miles. Price: $2,999

in the LUXE

Bike it

Dolls forever

Dolls are just what the gift guru would recommend if you have little children at home. And if money is no issue, it is all right to go for the best in the market. Like the Madame Alexander dolls, which also includes a customised ‘mini me’ version and a large dollhouse. The recipient of your gift will get eight dolls to begin, with the addition of one new doll every month for a year. Price: $8,000

Lay the mat

It is luminous, it is velvety and it is just right for meditation. If you have a yoga enthusiast in your list or someone who is inclined spiritually, gift this abcDNA luminous meditation mat. This handmade mat is presented in rich velvet and is carefully hand-finished with a cross-stitch design. It comes in colours ranging from pearl to deep charcoal and has a comfortable surface. Price: $595

Listen up

Wireless headphone is what you should be picking for the friend/relative who loves to listen to music all the time. The Bowers & Wilkins P7 Wireless Headphones spell luxury in look and in quality. The headphone can deliver a professional-level quality of sound. It is made from lambskin and aluminium, with a 17-hour charge. Price: $400

Light and sound

Here is another option for the musically oriented…but with an interesting twist. The UMA LED Sound Lantern is a perfect combination of next generation portable light and Bluetooth speaker. It could prove to be just what you need when you go camping next. You could sync your mobile device to the UMA to enjoy high-quality surround sound with simple touch sensitive controls. Besides, the LED light is controlled with innovative warm-dim technology, which allows you to create the mood of your choice. You could alter the warmth of the light simply by changing the light intensity. Price: $445.00

December 2017


explore OMAN

Heights of Adventure Experience the ‘Ultimate Jabal Activity Wall’ at the breathtaking mountainscape of Jabal Akhdar


hether you are a weekend reveller out on a sightseeing trip or an adventure traveller seeking to rough it out, the lofty mountain ranges of Jabal Akhdar will fill you with a sense of contentment that comes from a task accomplished. Acting as a muse to set you yonder on trysts with nature; treating your senses with the majestic landscape and its unique flora. Its stunning nature laden vista is designed to satiate every traveller/visitor’s tastes - more so for adventure travellers now that Anantara Al Jabal Al Akhdar Resort has an all new option. For, taking adventure to new heights is the Resort’s new activity wall. It has added an advanced phase to its mountain climbing experience, incorporating nearly 200 metres of via ferrata snaking across the cliff edge as well as Oman’s first mountain zip lines. The Ultimate Jabal Activity Wall is not for the fainthearted as the new climbing route is one of the highest in the Middle East, providing intrepid travellers with a brand new way to experience Oman’s Green Mountain and its expanse of craggy cliffs and limestone rock formations. Meaning ‘iron road’ in Italian, the via ferrata course comprises a series of steel cables that wrap around the mountain side, offering an unsurpassed view


December 2017

of the vast valley from an exhilarating, and otherwise inaccessible angle and providing perfect photo opportunities. Designed with the highest European safety standards, the new course ranges from entry level to advanced, ensuring it is suitable for all abilities, with a series of escape routes allowing any uneasy climbers to quickly ascend back up to the mountaintop. A team of certified instructors, trained by a highly experienced British mountain guide, are on hand to assist climbers as they attach themselves to the cables using a waist harness and a locked carabiner system, dispensing with the need to clip and unclip for extra safety. The adventure then begins, as climbers use their hands and a series of strategically placed metal steps to trace their way along the vertical rock face, before navigating jagged rock formations, ladders and vertical stairs. Below, a vast canyon plunges to 1,000 metres at its deepest point, providing climbers with a front row seat as they soak in the peaceful silence. Towards the end of the hour-long climb, two zip lines suspended high above the canyon allow thrill seekers to fly through the air for the ultimate adrenaline rush. Surrounded by majestic mountains and enjoying cool temperatures throughout the year, Anantara Al Jabal Akhdar Resort presents couples and families alike with a range of authentic mountain escapes and experiences. Guests looking an adventurous getaway can take

explore OMAN advantage of the resort’s exhilarating activity programme and immerse themselves into the rich local heritage and landscape. Those looking for a more relaxed affair, or simply want to unwind after a day of adventure, can do so the resort’s world-acclaimed Anantara Spa, which harnesses the essence of Arabia and boasts ancient hammam rituals. Those looking to add an element of adventure to their stay at Anantara Al Jabal Al Akhdar Resort can book the beginners Jabal Activity Wall, which includes a 90 minute session with expert guidance from two certified instructors. Each session

will have a maximum of four clients per group, aged nine years and above, with the maximum weight of 100kgs. More experienced climbers can book The Ultimate Jabal Activity Wall, which includes a two-hour climbing session with expert guidance from two certified instructors. This is also for a maximum of four clients per group, aged sixteen years and above. For more information or to make a reservation, please go to

December 2017


Explore Maldives


If you are looking for a perfect holiday destination closer home, check out Maldives and its scenic delights


he Maldives is a three-hour 50-minute flight away from Muscat, making it the ideal weekend getaway destination. Unrivalled luxury, stunning white-sand coastlines and an amazing underwater world make the Maldives an obvious choice for a relaxing beach getaway. Maldives is made up of thousands of coral islands and is known for its beautiful beaches and extensive reefs. This also means that all Maldivian resorts have their own island, adding to the intimacy and privacy of the trip. Baros Islands is one such. The property remains one of the easiest to reach from Malé - 25-minute speedboat ride away - opening up avenues ranging from relaxed island living to discovering the rich culture and heritage of one of the world’s most geographically dispersed countries. There are many unique experiences that guests can explore during their stay here, including Naming your own Manta Ray, Black Coral Reef Exploration, Marina life discovery through Scuba Diving and Deep-Sea Diving, Deep Sea Fishing, Malé Island excursion or even an exclusive private cinema screening on a sandbank in the middle of the Indian Ocean.

Name your own Manta Ray

Guests can avail an opportunity to adopt and name a Manta Ray by participating in a survey being conducted by Divers Baros Maldives, the resort’s PADI five-star Gold Palm Dive Centre. In an effort to sustain the rich underwater life, the centre is constantly conducting studies and surveys, including the latest survey to identify the many Manta Rays that can be seen at the various dive sites close to the island. This has resulted in the identifying of new Manta Rays which have been entered into the first scientific database for Manta Rays maintained by the international Manta Matcher Organisation.


December 2017

Malé Excursion Discover the Secret of the ‘Black Coral’ Reef

Enjoy a day-trip on board a traditional Dhoni surrounded by the unforgettable beauty of the scattered isles. Guests can follow an experienced snorkelling guide into the secret underwater world at the ‘Black Coral’ reef. The guide will lead one around the reef wall, which is also home to a stunning variety of coloured marine life.

Satisfy the curiosity and get a taste of Maldivian culture and history in Malé. At approximately 2km long and 1km wide, Malé is the smallest capital city in the world. Concentrated within this densely populated area are the country’s main political, economic, and educational and health institutions. Guests can enjoy a day touring the city’s lively fish market, the Grand Friday Mosque and the Presidential Palace, ending the adventure at the local crafts market for that all-important souvenir shopping.


Big Game Fishing – Deep Sea Fishing

Experience the thrill and excitement of big game fishing as one searches the deep, blue waters for fast, ocean going fish such as Sailfish, Tuna, Marlin, and Wahoo. Professional crew will be around to help guests test their strength and land the catch of their lifetime.


With an elegantly crafted curved prow, a vast single sail, thatched roof and a sarong-clad crew of four, the 19m long vessel ‘Nooma’ is modelled on the traditional Maldivian sailing Dhoni. Embark on a romantic journey at sea for a spot of secret reef snorkelling, sunset sailing or romantic dinner cruises for two.

Divers Baros Maldives

A country of nearly 1,200 tropical islands set in translucent lagoons in the Indian Ocean, the Maldives is renowned for some of the world’s most spectacular underwater diving experiences.

Private Sandbank Cinema

Private Sandbank Cinema is perhaps the most beautiful cinema one has ever been to. On a clear evening, enjoy an exclusive private cinema screening on a sandbank in the

middle of the Indian Ocean, while sipping on some bubbly and nibbling on popcorn. The cinema is aimed at creating magical and intimate memories under the stars. Explore these unspoiled and mesmerising sights of the Maldives…

December 2017


look GOOD

Crowning Glory

All set for the party season? What about your hair…?


hether you decide to let it down, wear a top knot or simply pull it up in a ponytail, how you get your hair party ready is all about understanding your hair traits and giving it a complementing look. If you are in doubt about the style to get you going this holiday season, check out this quick hairstyle guide, which is suitable for most hair types:

Mess those waves

With messy look holding on to its glamour appeal, you have enough reason to let your messy waves loose. There is an element of perfection in those disorderly waves…but to ensure that the look stays with you all through the party, you might require some style intervention. Simply pull all your hair in front and blow-dry it to create volume. Use a curling wand if required and get more texture with the product of your choice. Don’t forget to set the look with a finishing spray.

Slick it back

No partings for this party… Right, slick all your hair back to adopt a diva look. Begin by curling your hair with a curling iron. Yes, even the slicked back look requires some curls. Brush those curls into a wave and pull the hair back in a half ponytail. Use pins to secure hair above your ears and give your hair the spray touch. Open the ponytail and follow it by pulling off the pins when the spray has dried. Brush…

Smooth and shiny

If you are up for a classic look, go all out for this smooth look which has its own glamour quotient. The idea should be to reserve those smooth and shiny waves to the ends of your hair. Start by applying a thermal protective spray on to your dry hair. Section your hair and use a curling iron to work the magic from the mid to the ends of hair. Secure the sections with clips for 10 to 15 minutes before opening it up and loosening the curls with a brush. Again, set the style with a finishing spray.


December 2017


Opt for a bohemian look this season with a braid and wave style. To get this look, section your hair and wrap it around a curling iron. Follow by giving your hair a reverse French braid on one side of the hairline. There you go…your very own crown with a side braid and loose waves to add glamour.

Swept away

This is the perfect style if you love to rock the centre-parted style. With this style, you mark your scalp with a centre partition and let the hair fall in loose curls on both sides of the shoulder. Use a curler, if required, or else simply apply a serum on your hair and let it fall easily around your neck. You could finish it with hairspray to add gloss to the style.

Bob the party

This is a perfect style if you wear your hair short. Like the messy look, the idea is to give it a disorganised touch and feel. Curl different sections of your hair casually, but add a styling product to scrunch those curls. You could set the look with hairspray and finish it off with hairpins if you want to give it a wild look.

Straighten out

There is something so very chic about a blown-out look... Long straight hair, framing the face like a veil is quite appealing. It’s the ease in styling this look that makes it a timeless style. Apply your styling gel to the wet hair and blow dry it section by section, using a rounded brush. Once done, use a hairspray to make the style heed your wish.


By Sophia Raman PARTY SEASON IS HERE AND IT IS TIME TO LOOK BEYOND YOUR LBD We agree black is beautiful and is perfect to rock any formal do. But there is more to the regular LBD. This time around, nail the party season with a little twist to your regular black number. Check out the flashy sleeved ones that have become all the rage this year. The lacy affairs and fluted ones are certain to add oomph to your party look. Velvet is in this season and so is metallic. You could rock the party with a velvet skirt and a lacy blouse or a two-tone metallic outfit. It could easily become your chic ensemble for the daytime party. With the holiday season brining in a deluge of parties, you will have several reasons to pick party wear for different times of the day. Red is another no-fail party outfit. It is a flattering colour and can easily add glamour to your appearance. Pair it with right footwear – may be boots – and you are ready to go. Remember, party dressing is also about complementing your outfit with eye-grabbing footwear and a clutch or even an iconic bag. Make the accessories look festive, whether it is a regular office party, a formal festive banquet or a casual get-together.

* A self professed lifestyle guru, Sophia Raman has honed her expertise for beauty and fashion with a natural flair for all things chic and a distinctive style quotient. She is a sophisticated socialite who brings her love for fashion, style and travel to this column.

December 2017


style FILE

Omani fashion designers take ‘modest fashion’ to the next level in London For the first time, Omani fashion designers Amal Al Raisi and Buthaina Al Zadjali were part of an exciting new concept of modest fashion, at the ‘Modest Fashion Festival’ in London, recently. London based journalist Rabi’ah M. writes about the event and the designers.

Amal Al Raisi

One of the major fashion hubs in the world, which is celebrated for its exceptional new trends, is London, a multicultural city; it is here that an event such as the Modest Fashion Festival seemed to perfectly fit and provide an ideal platform to celebrate modest fashion for the modern Muslim woman. There were a variety of fashion designers from around the world who participated, including Meryem Boussikouk (Morocco), Hengki Kawilarang (Indonesia), Vivi Zubedi (Indonesia), Raishma (UK) and Mira Indria (Indonesia) followed by Omani designers Buthaina Al Zadjali and Amal Al Raisi. As a brand, Bthaina can be defined as modern and feminine with exquisite details for women worldwide. According to Buthaina, her decision to participate in the Modest Fashion Festival was to test the international market and present her designs. As she explains: “Since my rebranding, I have had success in this market and believed that it would be interesting to do something outside the Middle East. It is within this context that the Modest Fashion Festival was seen as an ideal venue and audience fit for my brand.”

Photos by David Jensen


December 2017

Halima Aden, the first Hijabi model dressed in Omani fashion designer Amal Al Raisi’s outfits

Style FILE Amal Al Raisi’s brand, on the other hand, mainly consists of ready-to-wear and capsule collections for every season. “So far, my main source of inspiration for my collections is Oman and its beautiful heritage, allowing me to share a classic tale and the importance of its history,” she states, pointing out that she chose this event for various reasons. “I believe it provides a completely new perspective in regards to modest dressing, offering elegant demureness to women. I was specifically interested

December 2017


style FILE

in giving a new poised emotion towards this. Furthermore, this was an excellent opportunity for me to display to an international audience what Omani fashion was all about; this was pivotal for me,” she notes. The concept of fashion holds great importance for Buthaina who believes that “it is all about designing elegant yet comfortable pieces, which are sought to be confidently worn. I think being able to prevail and express personality, whilst deciding an individual’s identity through what they wear, is most important.” This view is also shared by Amal, who comments: “Fashion to me is all about expressing your identity aesthetically.” When asked about how they both managed to stay updated with fashion, Buthaina explains that the role of social media is very influential in inspiring her. “It keeps me abreast with the latest trends on a local and international level. When designing, I trust my moods and instincts...” Interestingly Amal takes a different approach by following the trend forecast: “Ultimately I am able to speculate my colours, fabrics, textures, materials, graphics and prints that I plan to present on the runway and in stores for my upcoming collections,” she explains. Defining her personal style, Buthaina maintains that she likes a calm, classy and comfortable style; albeit one that expresses her penchant for embellishments. “I have this personal desire for embroidery and embellishment

Buthaina Al Zadjali

Talking about her participation in the Modest Fashion Festival, Amal expresses her joy in being a part of this first of a kind event in London. She says, “I was ecstatic to showcase my Omani heritage in such an iconic city to a wonderful international audience, which made me feel proud… This is such a prestigious global platform showcasing diversity at its finest.” Buthaina, however, had no expectations, but was determined to make an impression. “I wanted to test my collection in an international market; I was certainly looking forward to a positive feedback. I was very overwhelmed with the positive reaction I received,” she states. The festival proved to be an excellent platform for the two designers since they were able to act as brand ambassadors of the Omani heritage. The outcome of the overall event was simply fantastic; the attendees were excited to see something unique and appreciated the creative work and innovation of the talented designers.

Halima Aden dressed in Buthaina’s collection

Style FILE

coinciding with materials, which are dainty and delicate,” she adds. Amal, meanwhile, prefers a style which accentuates a lot of comfort and luxurious fine detailing. “I also focus on current trends, which keep me updated,” she states.

Lets Party!

style FILE

Forget trends and the fashion dictates; rock this party season in clothes that define your style quotient


hether you are receptive to the fashion mores or not, here is a quick party night guide to help you get in the mood of the season and help you choose outfits designed to accentuate your look and style.

Jumpsuit it

As the jumpsuit continues to hold its grip on the fashion circuit, you could consider one for the upcoming party. Jumpsuits are elegant and equally comfortable, making it an ideal wear for the casual do or even a formal party. While the casual jumpsuit could be a simple printed affair, a formal one could range from the classy cold shoulder and one-shoulder outfit to the faux dress or the lacy romper.

Pop of gold

You could make the loudest or the most subtle party statement with gold outfit‌depending on how you carry it. The colour gold is extravagant in its presentation and is perfect for most formal dos. You could go for a gold gown or a dress, depending on what appeals your style sense. But, if you are looking to temper the gold look, find a combination - whether in accessories or some part of the outfit – to give gold another twist.


December 2017


LET’S TALK SUPERFICIAL! ‘LOOK FASHIONABLE BUT KNOW YOUR PLACE…’ IS ALE AL ZADJALI’S ADVICE FOR ALL WANNABE DIVAS I feel like it’ll be a crime to start this piece without mentioning Heidi Montag’s ‘Superficial’ which is one of the greatest albums of all time and is available on iTunes *wink.* I’ve spent the past month in a city that truly celebrates fashion, a factor solely based on visual elements. I went to shows; I walked around and even got into the invite-only parties. I did most of this in my Dorothy inspired red glitter boots that are actually an ode to RPDR’s Miss Fan Favorite, Valentina. I got all the attention I needed and satisfied my ego, but what I was disappointed to see was how superficial people seem to think that fashion is meant to be. I hung out or looked over at the elite, the ones that shared the front row with me, and they carried off their styles and were humble.

Black is beautiful

The reference is not to the quintessential LBD. Black, for obvious reasons, has become a mainstay for formal evening. You could opt for various combinations and permutations of the colour to fit your style. It is a very flexible colour in the fashion scheme. If you have a black jacket handy, you could wear it with any short skirt or, alternately, combine a plain black top with any skirt/pant.

Dress and tell

There is something very chic about a party dress. The tunic variety, which has held the fancy of most fashionistas is just what will set you up for this season’s parties. Check out dresses in lacy avatars too; they can give you all the style you want. Another option to consider in the dress counter is the asymmetrical hemmed ones that have found a foothold in the trend list.

However, it’s the baby fashion enthusiasts, the ones sitting outside hoping for an invite, that walk around like they are better than you because they paired an H&M sweater with borrowed Jimmy Choos. That’s the downside of celebrating fashion; being superficial is never warranted, but if you are going to pretend you are that DIVA than - oh honey - you better be the actual Beyoncé and not the budget wannabe I’m seeing in front of me. Look fashionable but know your place, because it’s easy to get fashion attention but your charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent is what makes the look.

The casual touch

While jeans have a casual air about them, they can also create a flurry of formality when accompanied by a dressy blouse and accessories that have chic labelled on them. But if it is an all out casual party, you could top your jeans with a sweatshirt and go with contrasting accessories to look special.

Ale Al Zadjali is a 23 year-old award-winning fashion designer; he is the brain behind the ‘Esque By Ale’ line of clothing

Sequined and ready

Like gold, sequins have that party look that comes through even when they are presented as a part of an embroidery work. You could carry a wear a sequinned jacket and make your fashion statement at the party night. With sequins, you have the choice of colours too. All that you need to ensure is that the sequins don’t look over the top.

December 2017


Season’s SPECIAL

Its party time folks!

Live for today, plan for tomorrow, party tonight…

Season’s SPECIAL


Planner With the holiday season already on us, there is no excuse not to have a party – on the house, in the office, at the beach…


you quicker response. However, if you intend to stick to a theme and have already decided on one, make sure the invite specifies it.

The success of your party depends on early planning; you would need a head start of at least two weeks before the d-day.

3. Chalk up the menu for the party. If your guest list contains vegetarians, ensure that the menu has enough dishes to cater to them.

1. Begin by making a list of your invitees. If you are planning a large open house party, it is best to invite a few people more than your original list. It will turn your party into a full house even if some, as is won’t to happen, are not be able to make it owing to last minute issues.

4. Unless you are sourcing the food from a restaurant or a catering company, you would need to start working on the menu a few days in advance. Some dishes can be made in advance and will save you time on the day of the party.

2. Follow that up by sending out the invitations. With WhatsApp taking over all functions of our everyday life, you could create a special invite that could be forwarded easily. It will also get

6. Start cooking dishes that can be frozen or chilled at least three days before the party.

f you said ‘aye’ to that, get set to plan one right away with this quick party planner guide.

Party checklist

5. A week before the party, do your first round of grocery shopping.

7. Come up with a playlist of popular

songs or get a friend to compile them for you a week before the day. 8. Get your house clean and ready for the party. 9. Set the party hall a day before. Involve family members in rearranging the furniture to make space for the guests to move around easily. Set the table for starters at a convenient point and have a designated drinks counter. 10. Decoration will add to the mood of the party and so would some lighting. Get that sorted at least a day in advance. Use candles to create that special warmth in the house. Fresh flowers could help too. 11. If you are cooking the food for the party, make sure most of the items are ready a day before; any dish that cannot be cooked in advance can be prepped a day before. 12. Last, but not least, do not forget to inform your neighbours that you have a party and there might be some sounds that are louder than usual.

Season’s SPECIAL

Make it special Make your party special with an interesting theme; one that could be spread across the venue, the food and, of course, the dress code


hile the holiday season unfolds with its own festive banquets and parties, you could add a twist to your home party with one of the ideas suggested here…

create the winter ambience for your guests. Campfires also mean dishes that are distinctly outdoorsy. So, go on, make it a special one.

Mini party

Hawaiian luau will not disappoint, as everyone gets to come in fun costumes to fit the theme. Let the décor reflect the theme and food take the guests on a Hawaiian trip.

What fun it would be to set up your dinner table with all the food in bite-sized pieces. You could, perhaps, go with starters that can be put together in mini sizes and shapes and do the same with desserts.


Remember all the fancy dress competitions while you were at school? Bring them on with a masquerade party this time around. Alternately, you could plan a costume party and make it a fun evening for all.

Retro party

This one will prove to be a winner if you have friends in different age groups. The idea should be to bring back the roaring 60s with a dinner party. Create the theme with the décor, the cutlery, music, and, of course, clothes.

Beach dinner

Barbecue would be your best bet for a beach party, but you could also put up a little beach bonfire, without causing any disturbance to other picnickers or visitors. You could have marshmallows and sing around the fire.

Backyard party

If you are living in a villa, which come with little backyards to sit out during winter, you could build a campfire and

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Hawaiian theme

Black and white

Red may be the favourite colour of the season, but give it a twist by having a black and white affair. Keep everything black and white and try and create starters that wear the theme colours.

Breakfast at night

Well… If your guests are game for it, a breakfast for dinner party could be just what you need to break away from the same old party ideas. Prepare a breakfast spread that includes all the popular items and record the reaction of your guests.

Santa Claus party

Imagine everyone dressed as Santa… Ask your guests to be creative in their Santa costume and get ready for laughter and fun.

Season’s SPECIAL

Party Centrepiece Whether you are having a formal sit-down dinner/lunch or a casual do with friends and family, make your centrepiece the talking point of your party

Check out these centrepiece ideas to get you started‌ Candles, candles and more candles

Create your candle centerpiece by placing as many votive candles as possible in a rectangular, possibly red coloured, serving dish. Place dark red cherries, which are readily available at this time of the year in the supermarkets, around the candles to add to the glow of the flame and the red of the dish.

Floating flowers

Use one of your wide-rimmed bowls to create this centrepiece. Fill it with water, half way through and arrange colourful flowers in it. Alternately, you could have gel candles floating in the bowl.

Coloured balls

Get hold of the Christmas decoration balls to adorn your table. Fill a silver bowl with the brightly coloured balls and place this bowl on a cake stand. Add to the stand some holly and greens to create the mood.

Silver treats

Make a centrepiece from foil-wrapped treats that you could pick from any supermarket. Place them in a vase

which has a large base to add to the look. Alternately, you could fill a miniature metal bucket with sand and stick in it colourful pinwheel lollipops.

Leaf touch

Trimmings from your garden ferns or stems from the local flower shop could help you put this centerpiece together. Put these items in a tall glass bottle or a jar and let it spread the freshness around the table. For another take on this centerpiece, use moss - you could buy it online or find it at florists - as the base and place rocky pebbles or some piece of wood on it. Insert little clippings of fern or small potted plants in it.

Wooden holder

The little wooden crates in which fruits are often sold in wholesale market can act as your quaint little flower container for the centrepiece. Fill it with big blossomed flowers and let the colour seep into every part of your home.

Lime and lemony

Pull out your clear glass bowl and pack it with limes, lemons and oranges in green and yellow colours for a citrus affair.

December 2017



Deck the halls It’s that time of the year again…


ring out the holiday decorations; pull out those miniature lights and the paper stars. It’s the season to be jolly. The season to deck the halls, the doors and the windows… If this is the first time you are observing holiday season or if you have discarded the decorations used the previous year, here is a little guide to help you adorn your home for the season on a budget. Let’s start from the front door... A wreath on the door is perhaps the most symbolic piece of decoration for the season. And, interestingly, you can make one yourself with supplies that are easily available in your home. You might require some seasonal embellishments to give it that special touch; otherwise, all that you require is a base to work on. You could use wiring material on a metal structure or use a foam base - whichever is convenient. From here, it is only your imagination that will limit the options. You could turn it into a family keepsake by incorporating little souvenirs and even buttons and beads. Continue your holiday décor to the interiors. If you have a spacious entryway, or if it leads to a staircase, strike a balance by decorating the guardrails with string lights. It will create the holiday magic that you have been seeking. The entryway could also be your candy store place. Use a side table to hold a bowl of Christmas candies to treat anyone who enters/leaves your home during the holiday season. If you plan on making


December 2017

Christmas cookies and sweetmeats, keep a platter loaded with the goodies on the centre table. Now move to the main sitting room, where all the family members would be spending most of the time together. Depending on your budget and the height of the ceiling, pick your Christmas tree from the hypermarket close to you – if you haven’t, already. When making space to install the tree, remember to ensure that it isn’t obstructing the main furniture pieces or blocking the showcase. It is best to place it towards one end of the room, where it will get immediate attention, and not interfere with the proceedings of the room. How you decorate your Christmas tree is, on all counts, a personal choice, but the tree is not your only resource for the seasonal décor. Do not forget the windows, which can act as your display panel for decorative pieces that can work alone, without the support of the tree.


Decorating tips to enhance the look Candles

Holiday season or otherwise, candles never fail to enhance the mood of everyone at home. You could pick tea light candles from any home furnishing outlet in the capital and find creative candle holders to add to the warmth. Not surprisingly, even items lying around your kitchen could act as candle holders, making it a very homey affair. Do not forget to add a few scented candles to the array. If you are using pillar candles, get hold of colourful ribbons to decorate it in seasonal flavours. You could use holiday motifs or the velvet ones to add a glamorous touch.


Spruce up your living space with trimmings that immediately give your room a Christmassy feeling. If you are short on ideas, simply string Christmas cards and hang them around the room. Use clothespins or clips to hang the cards and add a twist to your decoration. Your dining table could also do with some trimmings and spread the mood to different parts of the house.


Twinkling lights have a very festive appeal. You could wrap your stair railing, the Christmas tree and even the windows with colourful lights that blink in accordance to your mood to infuse the ambience with festive cheer.


It is Christmas and you have all the reasons to hang wreaths even inside. Use vantage points in the living room or give the windows the wreath touch. Make the holiday decoration a family affair and let the season soak you in love and camaraderie

December 2017


Relatively SPEAKING

The Fine Art of Gifting Holiday season is incomplete without indulging in the act of gifting

‘Always forget what you give.’

A profound message... It came from a YouTube video, which was, in effect, trying to draw attention to the general apathy among people to beggars who are poor and homeless. The video, a social experiment, pitted a rich dad begging for his infant’s food, against a poor dad doing the same. While the rich dad not just readily got the money he asked and even got a date lined up, the poor dad was cursed, dismissed and generally seen as a social pest. But what added a twist to the clipping was the intervention from an unlikely source – another homeless man begging on the street. He not only thrusts the money asked into the poor dad’s hands, he also gives him – and everyone else watching – a lesson in giving. On a worn piece of


December 2017

While the story has no relevance to the topic discussed here, the homeless man’s message for his givers is profound in any context.

received from the intended person. Let not the worth of the gift we received be our gauge for spending on the gift for that friend, relative or even a colleague.

When you give, whatever it may be, do not expect something in return! Give, because you want to give; not because you will get something equally valuable in return. Gifting as an exchange offer – knowing you will get one in return - defies the concept of giving that this season upholds. Give… Simply gift!

Don’t give because you will get… The true art of gifting lies in making the recipients feel that they are thought of on the special day; that the gift is a token of the shared experiences and emotions that connects you to them. Why then not make it special; why then not revel in the joy of giving? Forget the budget assigned to each recipient in your list of gift buying. Instead, focus on what gift would make the receiver feel special.

We are human and we are tuned to think, rather weigh our prospects, on the scale of money. We have been trained by our circumstances to give only when there is an equal and proportionate chance to receive. And, if the balance is tilted by the money used in purchasing the gift, we are sure to mark it in our mental diary to balance the scale while picking the gift the next time around. Gifting then becomes a mere chore of giving and receiving items that are purchased with a calculator in one hand.

Whether you buy a gift from the numerous outlets in the capital, make it yourself, create a card with a message that rings true or even pick an experience that the recipient would love, ensure that it is the most meaningful gift you have ever given. This might seem as easy as done when it comes to a close family member or a friend, but you would vindicate yourself from the gift curse if you do the same when it comes to gifting a colleague or someone in your neighbourhood too.

This holiday season let’s all make a difference to the art of gifting. Let’s take a stand to buy or create gifts without weighing the last gift we

The best way to go about your gifting agenda this year is to draw a list of all the recipients, to begin with. Against each name, write what you think

is their most significant trait. Add to it their likes, dislikes, hobbies… if you are aware. If not, simply jog your memory to recall anything of interest about the person concerned. Now, consider all the gift options that the person would cherish. Weigh that list with your budget. Do not break your bank to fulfill your list; remember, even a handmade card is more beautiful than a thoughtlessly picked gift from the neighbourhood supermarket.

Relatively SPEAKING

cardboard that he’d laid out beside his begging bowl, are these words – ‘Forget what you give.’

Some of the most precious gifts are those that are put together by hand. It shows you love and care enough to make time and create a gift. The possibilities for DIY gifts are endless; all that it requires is a spark of inspiration. Ask any old-timer and they will tell you that nothing spells love more than a hand-written note. You might have access to a computer and a printer, but resist keying in your letter for that someone special. Pull out a sheet of paper, your good old pen, and write a letter to each member of the family. Tell them how much they mean to you and share the experiences that have helped you bond with them. You can bet your last baiza, this letter will be cherished forever!

December 2017


man DATE

Are you party ready? There is more to party fashion than your quintessential jacket, accompanied by a formal shirt and tailored pants If you intend to go shopping for the upcoming holiday season, think beyond the usual shirt-pant affair. You might have reservations about checking into a spa or patronising a salon to treat your skin to some facial or a manicure for your nails, but don’t deny yourself the pleasure of basking in the party glow with right outfit and accoutrements to match. Let the clothes become an extension of your personality. Depending on the party theme, go all out to find the outfit that reflects you and complements the party. Although a formal affair requires you to think of several details, it isn’t difficult to put the look together, as you simply toe the established fashion rules. It is the casual spectrum that is wide and left to your imagination. It is here that you can bend the rules, follow your instincts and create a look that is distinctly you.

Here are some casual party ideas to get you started:

To begin, understand the occasion and the theme planned by the hosts. Give your wardrobe a quick check to see if it can meet the requirements – if not, go shopping – and see how you could coordinate the different pieces to rock the party. But don’t fall prey to the ‘anything-goes’ idea, as casual parties also have their own style guides. And, don’t forget, your clothes have to reflect your personality, giving you that groomed look.

For a barbecue party

This is, obviously, an informal party; probably a get-together with friends and you may be tempted not to think twice about what to wear or not to wear. But with weather quickly donning its winter garb, you would have to consider the dip in the temperature in the evenings. If it is a lunch party in a garden, you could easily make do with stylish chino shorts and may be a denim shirt. Top it with sneakers or leather sandals. For the evening, your best bet would be a pair of


December December 2017 2017

Most casual dinner invites do not specify a dress code, giving you a free berth to rock the look in your favourite style. But then, do not forget it is the holiday season and even a casual one requires you to assemble a party look. A t-shirt is fine and you could pick a slim fit one, that is, if the body doesn’t groan under the fitting. Complete it with a pair of dark jeans or the trendy chino pants; even stylish sweatpants are fine. A jacket will help you to stick to the weather dictates.

man DATE

For a casual party


jeans, a neat tee and a cardigan or even a light sweater. Don’t forget your belt and a pair of loafers.

For a beach affair

What better time than December to plan a beach party. This one calls for a carefree look, which, again, requires a little planning. Wear one of your printed shirts and think bold. If you are wearing a plain tee, complement it with colourful or even printed shorts. Carry along your sunglasses and make it stylish with a hat.

For a smart dinner do

A smart dress code calls for a more formal touch. Read ‘smart’ as a party suit. While a grey suit would work well for the dinner, you might want to think beige or khaki for the lunch. And, if you can carry a slim fit shirt, go on; pick one that can accentuate your suit. A turtleneck tee or a sweater could also work with the weather opening up options; top that with a blazer. You would also require to find a belt that fits the colour combination and a pair of leather shoes to complete the look.

Right, you can never go wrong with a ‘right’ pair of jeans. Jeans spells casual like nothing else… The key, however, is in picking a pair that is just right for your body and your distinct personality. Although jeans do come across as the most quintessential piece of outfit, a sharp eye for fashion will bring out the difference in each one. Do not consider baggy jeans as your casual party attire; they come with their own list of dos and don’ts as most are not as comfortable as they claim to be. It is also best to avoid those distressed and ripped varieties, as also the ones that have logos in attention-grabbing areas.


While jeans have that eternal casual look, chinos have that perfect casual yet groomed look. They come in colours that can complement your formal shirt or even a stylish tee and you are good to go for any informal party. According to style gurus, having at least one pair in khaki or grey colour can upgrade your wardrobe instantly.


Your t-shirt collection might include an array of graphic affairs that reflect your beliefs and your fun quotient, but they have no place at a party. Think mature when you pick your t-shirt for the party in question. Opt for solid, one-colour t-shirt; even striped ones are great.


It is the weather for jackets and you will do yourself, rather your wardrobe a whole lot of good by investing in a blazer or even a leather jacket. The idea is to flatter your look by layering. Simply adding layers can make your outfit look interesting and appealing. A jacket can turn your most casual jeans and tee affair into a stylish one

December 2017


Boeing Expands Oman Air 787 Global Fleet Care Services to include engines

Boeing announced an agreement to provide custom services from the Boeing Global Fleet Care portfolio to Oman Air. The agreement, which provides Line Replaceable Unit support for 787 Dreamliner engines, builds on the foundation of a previously contracted Component Services Program with the airline in 2015 and strengthens the services commitment. Under the terms of the agreement, Boeing will support Line Replaceable Units for the 787 engines of the Oman Air Dreamliner fleet. A Line Replaceable Unit is a component that is designed to be replaced quickly during maintenance or overhaul, such as a hydraulic pump or an integrated drive generator. The agreement covers 10 years of service. The Component Services Program includes exchange and repair services that increase efficiency in managing high-value rotable parts, components, and line-replaceable units (LRU).

Bank Muscat launches card promotion to mark 35th anniversary

Bank Muscat, as part of its ‘Let’s Do More’ vision and celebrations marking the 35th anniversary, has launched an exciting card promotion offering attractive cash prizes. Rewarding Bank Muscat cardholders with the attractive value proposition of cash prizes, the promotion runs for 2 months from 25 October till 25 December 2017. All Bank Muscat debit and credit cardholders are eligible to participate in the promotion, which has been launched as part of the bank’s 35th anniversary celebrations. To win the prizes, all customers need to do is use their debit or credit cards to settle payments across merchant outlets in Oman or abroad as well as online transactions. Each transaction of RO 5 using Bank Muscat cards earns customers a chance to enter the monthly draw to win RO 100. In all, 35 winners will be rewarded each month.

Al Mouj Marina gets prestigious ‘Five Gold Anchor’ status from TYHA

Al Mouj Marina has been awarded five Gold Anchors by The Yacht Harbour Association (TYHA) making it one of only four marinas in the Gulf to join this exclusive group. The 124-berth facility marina, located at the heart of Oman’s lifestyle destination, Al Mouj Muscat, won the prestigious certification for attributes including good customer service, giving value for money at all levels of accreditation and achieving recognised industry standards. The Gold Anchor Award Scheme, established by TYHA almost 25 years ago, has been assessing marinas throughout the world and is considered as a reliable evaluator of marina quality. TYHA awards upwards of five Gold Anchors to marinas that voluntarily undergo a series of rigorous tests including a marina audit, mystery shoppers and customer questionnaires.

BSM shortlisted for TES International School of the Year Award 2018

British School Muscat (BSM) has been shortlisted with just three other schools for this prestigious international award, recognising the strides it has taken in becoming one of the leading British International schools in the world. TES Global is a digital education company that has been supporting educators for over 100 years with a mission to help teachers, schools, and universities to develop and deliver the best education. Within the submission for the Award, the major improvements to the facilities now available on the BSM campus were highlighted, along with the exceptional 2017 exam results, extended pastoral care and extracurricular activities.


December 2017

Get up to 40GB with Ooredoo Shahry Plans

Ooredoo continues to offer four times extra data to all its Shahry Postpaid customers. Offering a generous 40GB every month on twoyear Shahry plans contract customers can stay connected for longer. Commenting on this fantastic value plan, Feras Al Shaikh, Ooredoo Director of Consumer Sales said: “This extra special bonus data was developed to give customers a great new experience as well as staying connected with family, friends, the latest apps and the online world for longer.” The generous data included in Ooredoo’s Shahry plans is available to new and existing Ooredoo subscribers. It treats those who sign up for a new 24-month contract with up to four times the standard data allowance every month and also provides an option for those who want a shorter period with double the data for 12 months, depending on the monthly data plan they choose with their contract.

Joyalukkas opens in South Extension, Delhi

Joyalukkas has opened its new showroom in the bustling metropolis of South Extension, Delhi. Set at the heart of the exciting neighbourhood of South Extension, Delhi, Joyalukkas will be a sparkling new jewellery shopping destination to captivate the residents’ hearts. Joyalukkas South Extension features the brand’s signature jewellery collections, spacious interiors, ample parking space and a professional service team offering customers the very best of the world’s favourite jeweller. Joyalukkas South Extension will feature over a million jewellery designs showcasing a mix of traditional, ethno contemporary and international influences. It will carry an exclusive line of Joyalukkas brands, such as Veda Temple Jewellery, Pride Diamonds, Eleganza Polki Diamonds, Masaaki Pearls, Zenina Turkish Jewellery, Li’I Joy Kids Jewellery, the Apurva Antique collection & Ratna Precious Stone Jewellery, along with renowned names in gold, diamond, precious stones, platinum and pearl jewellery.

Rotana celebrates the opening of Sundus Rotana

Rotana, one of the leading hospitality management companies in the Middle East, Africa and Turkey, is continuing its ambitious expansion plans with the opening of Sundus Rotana Muscat, the group’s first property in Oman’s vibrant capital. With the latest annual report by the Ministry of Tourism showing a 16 percent increase in tourist arrivals to Oman, the new hotel will help drive the Sultanate’s reputation as a world-class business and leisure tourism destination. Minutes away from Muscat International Airport, Sundus Rotana Muscat promises its guests and visitors alike unforgettable experiences starting from its 215 spacious rooms and suites, Bodylines Fitness and Wellness Club to its state-of-the-art meeting facilities and modern ballroom, which can accommodate up to 300 people. The hotel is also home to three signature restaurants set to add a new ‘flavour’ to Muscat’s dining scene.

December 2017


Alfa Romeo Stelvio Wins ‘Autonis’ Award

Alfa Romeo’s design has resonated once again with readers of Germany’s renowned car magazine ‘Auto Motor Und Sport’. In this year’s edition of the annual ‘Autonis’ awards, readers named Alfa Romeo ‘Design Brand of the Year’, while the award for the ‘Large SUV’ category went to the Alfa Romeo Stelvio. In addition, the high performance variant of the SUV, the Alfa Romeo Stelvio Quadrifoglio, recently claimed the title of world’s fastest production SUV, setting a new benchmark lap time at Germany’s legendary Nürburgring. This is the latest achievement in the racing tradition of the Quadrifoglio in over a century of Alfa Romeo history. In edition of the ‘Autonis’ awards, 16,602 ‘Auto, Motor Und Sport’ readers cast their votes in ten categories; more than half of the votes (50.5 per cent) went to the Alfa Romeo Stelvio, crowning it the winner of the ‘Large SUV’ category. Alfa Romeo also won the ‘Design Brand of the Year’ award for the second year in a row, receiving 27 per cent of the votes.

Big Deals on Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, and RAM Models

Dhofar Automotive, the official distributor for Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, and RAM Vehicles in Oman, has announced huge discounts on nearly every vehicle across its product portfolio. Going by the slogan ‘It’s a big deal’, the new promotion offers discounts ranging from RO1,500 to as high as RO5,000. Valid until December 31 or until stocks last, this offer applies to all Chrysler 200; Jeep Renegade, Cherokee, and Compass; RAM 1500 Laramie, SLT, and Limited; and Dodge Charger models - with discounts reaching as high as RO5,000 depending on the model chosen. In addition, as part of the offer, the Dodge Durango SXT is being offered at a low starting price of just RO12,160 while at the same time, any customer purchasing a Jeep Wrangler during the offer period will be offered free Mopar accessories worth RO1,900 as well as have the opportunity to purchase a Wrangler Mopar 2-inch lift kit at a discounted fitted rate of just RO499.

The new E-Class Cabriolet

25 years after the launch of the first Mercedes-Benz E-Class Cabriolet, the latest edition of this winning model promises even more style, comfort, space and intelligence than its predecessors. As the newest member of Mercedes-Benz’s new E-Class family, the four-seat cabriolet, with its classic fabric soft top, combines puristic, sensuous design with long-distance comfort and the latest technology. When the soft top is up, the E-Class Cabriolet has a silhouette similar to that of the E-Class Coupé and displays the same expressive proportions. The close ties between the two models are likewise apparent in the pure design, with an emphasis on surfaces with clean lines and sensuous forms. The ‘hot and cool’ design idiom, representing both elegance and intelligence, is what shapes the appearance of the Cabriolet, and informs its unique character – most particularly when the soft top is down.


December 2017

Get ‘Zoom-Zooming’ with Mazda Oman App

Mazda continues to celebrate its ‘Zoom-Zoom’ spirit in the Sultanate of Oman with the new and revamped Mazda Oman mobile app, where users can book Mazda service appointments, connect with Mazda showrooms and service centres, view the latest Mazda offers in Oman, and more. Available in both Arabic and English versions, users can download the app on the Apple Store for i-Phones, Google Play for Android phones, as well as on BlackBerry devices (Q10, Z10, and Z30). It’s also where Mazda customers and current owners can book an expert appointment, give feedback to Mazda, and celebrate the joy of driving a Mazda by becoming a part of the Mazda Zoom-Zoom club. While the Mazda Oman app takes motoring convenience to the next level with short-form, easy-to-access info, the Mazda Oman website www.mazdaoman. com is an extensive showcase of the brand in Oman.

Audi redefines Vorsprung With A8 Launch at Future Mobility Forum

At the 2017 Future Mobility Forum, Audi showcased the original RS 7 autonomous driving concept car that demonstrated a significant step in the development of this technology for Audi. In October 2014, this RS 7 with the project name ‘Bobby’ already completed a driverless lap of the Hockenheimring at speeds of up to 240 km/h. The new Audi A8 presents the future of the luxury class. In its fourth generation, the brand’s flagship model again provides the benchmark for ‘Vorsprung durch Technik’ – with a new design language, an innovative touchscreen operating concept and a systematically electrified drive. The Audi A8 is also the first production automobile in the world to have been developed for conditionally automated driving. From 2018, Audi will gradually be taking piloted driving functions such as parking pilot, garage pilot and traffic jam pilot into production.

Offers on Renault Megane

Renault Oman, from the house of Suhail Bahwan Automobiles, has announced an attractive offer on Renault Megane. Renault Megane is an effervescent and elegant saloon that offers the best-level low fuel consumption and CO2 emissions for the segment. As per the scheme, Renault Megane’s customers can enjoy a host of value propositions, including assured cash gift, free registration, manufacture warranty, periodic vehicle maintenance, free insurance and AAA/ Road Assistance Card. The offer is not applicable for rent a car/ taxi/ driver trainer segment. Renault’s new scheme will go on till December 31. Renault Oman’s scheme offers multiple benefits for customers purchasing their popular models as well as latest models.

December 2017


Chill Out



Director Jake Kasdan








Dwayne Johnson Kevin Hart Jack Black Nick Jonas Karen Gillan Ser’Darius Blain


1. Despacito: Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee 2. That’s What I Like : Bruno Mars 3. I’m The One: DJ Khaled 4. Humble: Kendrick Lamar 5. Shape of You: Ed Sheeran

Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle ‘Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle’ is a‘re-imagining’ of the 1995 film Jumanji Twenty years after the events of the first film, the infamous board game has evolved into a video game… In the new adventure, the tables are turned as four teenagers in detention are sucked

6. Mask Off: Future iSy: Lyle & Lil Yachty 7. Something Just Like This: Chainsmokers & Coldplay 8. Stay: Zedd & Alessia Cara 9. XO Tour Lif3: Lil Uzi Vert 10. Sign Of The Times: Harry Styles


December 2017

into the world of Jumanji. When they discover an old video game console with a game they have never heard of, they are immediately thrust into the game’s jungle setting, into the bodies of their avatars, played by Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, and Karen Gillan. What they discover is that you don’t just play Jumanji – Jumanji plays you. To beat the game and return to the real world, they will have to go on the most dangerous adventure of their lives and change the way they think about themselves. If not…they will be stuck in the game forever.


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John Travolta, Ella Travolta, Kelly Preston, Stacy Keach, Pruitt Taylor Vince, Lydia Hull Gotti is a biopic of the infamous New York mobster - from his beginnings as the leader of a crew to the heights of leading the Gambino crime family, to his eventual imprisonment. The film delves into the past and explores Gotti’s epic rise and fall in the mob. He earned the name ‘Teflon Don’ by the media, whom he did not shy away from. At the end, however, he was sentenced to life in prison, and a young 24 year old Gotti Jr. becomes the acting Boss of the Family…

FERDINAND Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Benicio Del Toro, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher This is the second film in the Star Wars sequel trilogy, following the hit 2015 film ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ in which Rey took her first steps into a larger world. In the new Star Wars outing, she joins Luke Skywalker on an adventure with Leia, Finn and Poe that unlocks mysteries of the Force and secrets of the past.


John Cena, Kate McKinnon, Gina Rodriguez, Daveed Diggs, Gabriel Iglesias, Bobby Cannavale ‘Ferdinand’ is a heartwarming animated comedy adventure that tells the story of a giant bull with a big heart. After being mistaken for a dangerous beast, he is captured and torn from his home. Determined to return to his family, he rallies a misfit team on the ultimate adventure. Set in Spain, Ferdinand proves one can’t simply judge a bull by its cover.

Skipping Christmas

Author: John Grisham In ‘Skipping Christmas’, Grisham takes a hilarious look at the frenzy that has become a part of the holiday tradition, by imagining a Christmas without crowded shops, loud office parties, Christmas cakes, or unwanted presents. The central characters, Luther and Nora Krank decide to, just once, skip the holiday altogether and set sail on a Caribbean cruise on December 25th. But skipping Christmas, they soon realise, isn’t half as easy as they had imagined.

The Gift of the Magi The Party

Author: Robyn Harding Harding spins a provocative domestic drama about a sweet sixteen birthday party that goes horribly wrong. Jeff and Kim Sander’s flawless life in a wealthy San Francisco family home suddenly begins to come apart, when they throw a party for their daughter, Hannah. It was to be a simply party with pizzas, cake, movies and a sleepover with four friends, but things turn otherwise and they find their picture-perfect life unravelling their darkest secrets and their friends turning to enemies.

Author: O. Henry This is a short story about a young married couple and how they deal with the challenge of buying secret Christmas gifts for each other with very little money. Set in New York at the turn of the twentieth century, this piece of American literature tells the story of a young couple and the sacrifices each must make to buy the other a gift. One dollar and eightseven cents is all the money Della has in the world to buy her husband a Christmas present…

December 2017


Chill Out



Holiday Season

As the countdown to the holiday season begins, get your kids in the festive mood with crafts and activities that are designed to recreate the magic of the season With Christmas being celebrated as a universal festival, there is no reason to shy away from indulging in the celebrations, even if it is only about putting together arts and crafts that are reminiscent of the holiday season. Check out to get your hands on

a variety of resources to soak in the mood. The site has interesting crafts to help your child learn the art of decorating, games to get in a celebratory mood, worksheets to keep the momentum up, poetry to read, cards to share, pages to colour and printable calendars to help schedule special days in the year. There is also a DLTK’s Countdown to Christmas, which is perfect to create that extra interest in the season. DLTK has a wealth of resources even if you do not want to celebrate/observe Christmas. The Crafts for Kids section features a variety of printable children’s crafts, worksheets and activities including projects for holidays, educational themes, etc. The crafts presented are also classified under material and type to make it easy for children of different ages. Check it out and make this holiday season special!

Riddle Time

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Riddle Time Answers ( November 2017)

Why can’t your nose be 12 inches long? What did the judge say when the skunk walked in the court room?


What do you call a sleeping bull? Answer: A bulldozer!


Why did the banana go to the Doctor? Answer: Because it was not peeling well.

Why don’t skeletons fight each other? WWhat kind of lights did Noah use on the Ark? Did you hear about the monster with five legs?

December 2017

3 4

Why is England the wettest country? Answer: Because the queen has reigned there for years! What belongs to you but others use more? Answer: Your name


What did the little mountain say to the big mountain? Answer: Hi Cliff!


s Gadget Riddle Web World Horoscope Trivia Books Gadget GADGET NOTES Jibo, the social robot

With technology making life easier, can a home robot be far behind? Smart homes are all about ease, convenience and comfort and this is where Jibo, the new digital handy robot comes in to picture. Claimed to be the first social robot, Jibo redefines the way people interact with technology. Jibo is capable of experiencing the world around him and can react with thoughtful movements and responses. Jibo is capable of telling the difference between up to 15 other family members or friends and will have his very own unique and engaging personality. What is more, Jibo can answer questions ranging from the weather to the latest news and can even double up as a family photographer.

IoT to aid dementia sufferers

Dementia sufferers could benefit from the new ‘Internet of Things’ technology, say experts. Currently underway, the project, involving a man with Alzheimer’s disease and his wife, is exploring how the ‘Internet of Things’ style technology can increase support for people with dementia. The technology analyses the physical data entries recorded by the couple each day and keeps track of certain things like blood pressure, hydration and temperature. The sensors and devices feedback information in real time so that monitoring staff can see whether someone has wandered too far from home, had a fall or is becoming unwell. It can also identify whether someone is not following their usual patterns of behaviour.

Augmented reality Harry Potter game

The developers of Pokemon Go have announced plans to recreate the magical world of Harry Potter in a new augmented reality game. Fans will be able to cast spells and encounter fantastic beasts when Harry Potter: Wizards Unite hits app stores. The collaboration between Niantic Inc and Warner Bros Interactive Entertainment will use real locations like Pokemon Go, where players are able to catch animated characters in real-world surroundings. In its announcement, Niantic said: “With Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, players that have been dreaming of becoming real-life wizards will finally get the chance to experience JK Rowling’s Wizarding World.”



ane, a busy business executive was late for a meeting, scheduled in another part of the city. She was driving at the speed of 80km/hr on a road where the speed limit was 60, when a cop pulled her over and said, “Can I see your license ma’am?” She nervously replied, “I’m sorry Sir,

but it was revoked two years ago for driving under the influence.” The cop narrowed his brows, gave her a shocked look and said, “Well, can you show me the registration of your car?” Jane gave him a frightened look and mumbled, “Sir… I stole this car and killed the driver… His body is in the trunk.” “Freeze! DON’T MOVE. I’m calling for backup,” he screamed and talked furiously into his walkie-talkie. Five minutes later, half the squad pulled up and the chief of police walked over to

Jane. “Ma’am, can I see your license?” he asked sternly. “Of course, officer,” she smiled and pulled out her license from the bag. He looked at it, said it was legitimate and asked, “Can I see the registration to this car then?” Jane immediately opened the glove compartment and handed it to him. “Ma’am, stand back!” he warned and opened the trunk of the car to find it was completely empty… At this, Jane brandished a finger at the first cop and said, “And I’ll bet that liar told you I was speeding too!”

December 2017


Chill Out



November 2017


(November 22 to December 21) Your happy period continues; it is reflected in your body and personal appearance too. You exude star quality and unbridled optimism. There is prosperity in the offing – your earnings are increasing and financial windfalls will happen. Opportunities could come from ‘out of the way’ places and ‘out of the way’ people – that also includes bosses who might make demands that are not part of the norm. Fortunately, your short term career goals have been mostly attained and now it is time to begin to focus on the family, the home and your emotional wellness.


Career is your main focus this month. You will be feeling almost invincible as no obstacle will appear impossible to overcome. Yes, you are working hard and succeeding, but you need to be more health conscious. This is a short-term issue as your health and energy will improve next month. In the meantime rests more and ensures that you get enough sleep.


On your career front, the month ahead looks very successful. You are very motivated and focused and this will help boost your career. You will soon realize that you are recognised not only for your charitable works, but also for who you are. Personal Appearance and overall demeanour will become important during this phase.


Your love and social life is still quite strong; you are still in a yearly love and social peak. It will prove to be a socially active month. Fortunately, finances also don’t seem to be a major issue this month.

Interestingly, you are more concerned with the finances of others than your own. This is the right time to involve in some personal rejuvenation exercise that will help detox and even lose weight.


You seem to have dedicated the month ahead to others and their needs. People will notice you as unselfish, putting others ahead of yourself. However, now is not the time to make adjustments or to overly assert yourself. Plan the changes that need to be done and in a few months it will be easier to implement them. The month ahead is a month of love and social activities.


Leo, it is party time of the year, and you, as always, are in the thick of it. Health and energy is perfect and love is going in the right direction. It is only the finance that seems to make you sober and serious. You are more careful of how you spend now and want value for your money.


It is time to maintain your focus on the home, family and your personal emotional wellness. Ignoring your emotional wellness is akin to not having a good night’s sleep. Those of you involved in psychological kinds of therapy should make satisfactory progress this month. Health is considerably improved after the 21st. Love is stormy, but improving.


Libran, the month ahead is about home, family and emotional wellness. Remember your message for the month is to get the passionate life right and everything else falls into place. Keep your focus on right feeling than right doing. Finances are usually fine right now, but health needs

Steve Buscemi (December 13, 1957

Steven Vincent Buscemi is an American actor and film director. He is an unconventional actor who has starred in films such as Armageddon, The Big Lebowski, Reservoir Dogs, Con Air, Big Fish, Ghost World, Desperado, and Spy Kids 2. He also played a prominent role in The Sopranos and starred as Nucky Thompson in Boardwalk Empire. Before Hollywood happened, Buscemi worked as a firefighter for four years in New York City. He married director Jo Andres in 1987, and the couple has one son.


December 2017

attention, especially in the second half of the month.


Scorpio, you are in an exceptional time of the year to start a new project or even launch a new product. You are still in a yearly financial peak until the 21st, but there are financial challenges that may affect the harmony at home. Unusually high family expenses might force financial changes. Look forward to career success.


You have the authority to create your personal happiness and to change conditions that displease you. You are in a very spiritual kind of phase and it will open up spiritual breakthroughs and experiences. This is also the month to pamper the body and take advantage of the physical delights of life. Your finances, however, need some clarity.


The month ahead is happy. You are doing everything you love; you are involved with friends, groups, group activities and organisations. Your networking abilities have become better and your technology skills are even stronger. Love still awaits singles in the online world. Health is considerably improved this month and you can enhance it further by making little adjustments.


Your love interests are carrying you far outside your normal sphere and you are taking risks to go outside your comfort zone. Career continues to be strong, as you are very serious about it and are bringing into it the effort required. Advancement and success are happening now, and you can pat your back for earning it on your own merit. Finances are fair this month.


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WEIRD NEWS Art works from elephant auctioned in Hungary

Paintings created by an Indian elephant, Sandra, who enjoys wielding a brush were auctioned off by a Hungarian travelling circus, recently. Three of the 42-year-old elephant’s abstract canvasses, featuring coloured lines flowing across them, fetched about $150 each. Sandra is said to paint with her trunk, purely for pleasure, according to her owner and trainer Florian Richter, who is also a horse acrobat. It was Sandra’s early circus trick involving a shaving brush that helped her adapt her skills to the canvas. Interestingly, Sandra is said to indulge in painting only when she is in the mood for it.

Shopper awarded $7.5million

An Army veteran, who broke his hip while picking out a watermelon in a Walmart supermarket, was awarded $7.5 million in compensation. His lawyer maintained that the injury completely changed his life and helped him sue Walmart on the grounds that their premises were not reasonably safe. The accident happened in June 2015, when retired Sgt. Henry Walker reached for a watermelon and got his foot stuck on the side of a wooden pallet under the display. He fell flat and broke his hip. The jury awarded Walker $2.5 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages

7-year-old girl boards plane with no ticket

A seven-year-old girl who ran away from her parents, managed to take a train to Geneva airport and even board a plane despite having no ticket. The girl gave her parents the slip near Geneva’s central railway station and then took the one-stop ride to the airport. She went through the security gate and managed to slip through the departure gate and boarded the plane without drawing any undue notice. Her parents called the cops who tracked her using the airport security videos.

It’s the time to be jolly Holiday season and all the traditions that make it magical… l Christmas may have become one of the most popular festivals in the world, but it is said to have started slow on the global scene, dating back only to AD 336. l Pan to the present and it is celebrated, more as a cultural holiday than a religious one, by more than 2 billion people in more than 160 countries around the world. l According to Norwegian scientists, Rudolph’s red nose is probably the result of a parasitic infection of his respiratory system. l Germans are said to have made the first artificial Christmas trees using dyed goose feathers. l The Guinness world records lists the tallest Christmas tree ever cut as the 221 foot Douglas fir that was displayed in 1950 at the Northgate Shopping Center in Seattle. l The world’s largest Christmas stocking, made by the Children’s Society in London on December 14, 2007, measured 106 feet and 9 inches long and 49 feet and 1 inch wide. l In Poland, spiders or spider webs are common Christmas trees decorations, as Polish people consider spiders to be symbols of goodness and prosperity. l Interestingly, Christmas wasn’t declared an official holiday in the United States until June 26, 1870. l In ancient times, mistletoe was considered sacred because it remains green and bears fruit during the winter when all other plants appear to die.

December 2017


Faces – issue no 130  
Faces – issue no 130  

Say 'hello' to the festive month of December, as FACES packs this brand new issue with seasonal cheer and the joie de vivire that winter ush...