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OMAN’S LARGEST CIRCULATED WEEKLY — 46,760 COPIES

VOL 10 ISSUE 41 / OCTOBER 20, 2016

Body of Work PAGE 22

THIS WEEK INN OMAN

GET GE ET STYLE SANS THE TH HE SPLURGE No w wo woman’s wardrobe is complete without with ou a LBD (little black dress). Learn Lear rn how to build on this style base, without spending a bundle. base e, w PAGE PAG GE 14

BOOK A BRUNCH What better way ay to start the weekend than with a leisurely, luxurious brunch ch overlooking the sea? With the re-opening e-opening of Al Bustan’s Beach Pavilion restaurant, the ideal venue is back. PAGE 16

PR PREPARE FOR A VISIT TO A SALON VI Lea all the local words you’d Learn need for a visit to the hair nee stylist in the latest edition of styl “Omani Slang”. “Om PAGE 18 PA


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VOLUME 10 ISSUE 41 OCTOBER 20, 2016

Give us a shout with questions, comments, compliments, complaints, or just to say “Hi” Founder Essa bin Mohamed Al Zedjali Chairman Mohamed Issa Al Zadjali CEO Ahmed Essa Al Zedjali scottarmstrong@timesofoman.com Chief Executive Editor Scott Armstrong felicia@timesofoman.com

Executive Features Editor Felicia Campbell Features Production Editor Swati Dasgupta swati@timesofoman.com

ashishdubash@timesofoman.com

Research/Copy Editor Ashish Dubash Associate Editors Salim Hamood Al Afifi Shruthi Nair

shruthi@timesofoman.com

salim@timesofoman.com

Associate Features Production Editor Mobin Mathew Blesson mobinmathew@timesofoman.com

gautam@timesofoman.com Digital Editor Gautam Bhargav Viswanathan Chief Creative Officer Adonis Durado Associate Art Director Waleed Rabin Graphics Editor Antonio Farach Design Editor Sahir K.M. Lead Designer Ali Jani Designers Antonio Ismael Sandiego Geri Batara Sonny Gregory Fernandez Director of Digital Television Joe Morrison Photography MMG Photographers

richard@timesofoman.com

Chief Sales Officer Richard Pakenham

aziz@timesofoman.com

Head Of Advertising & Marketing Aziz K. Baker Production Manager Shafi Shaik On The Cover Design by Ali Jani Photography by Haitham Al Manji (Model: Sultan Al Wahaib) For general inquiries or comments: HiWeekend@timesofoman.com

Muscat Media Group AN ISO 9001:2008 CERTIFIED COMPANY Post Box: 770, Postal Code: 112, Ruwi, Sultanate of Oman EDITORIAL 24726600/24726666 Ext 235/160 felicia@timesofoman.com

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THE WEEKEND LINEUP

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Tell us what you’re doing this weekend: Tweet us @HiWeekly_Oman; tag us in your weekend instagram photos @hiweekly_oman; or share with us on FB/hiweekly

Your calendar of the hottest events happening in Muscat this weekend

20 21 22 THURSDAY

FRIDAY

SATURDAY

10:00am Safety First

8:00am Watch the Spartans

7:00pm Drama at the Opera

Attend the last day of the Traffic Expo, held from Oct 18-20, a joint effort by the ROP and private sector organisations to reduce traffic accidents by featuring the latest trends and innovative solutions in traffic safety.

The much-awaited Spartan Race finally lands in Oman. Thousands have registered and will be participating in the obstacle course race wherein people will crawl in mud, under barbed wire, jump over obstacles, and run in a bid to be named the “ultimate Spartan”. It should make for quite the spectacle. ectacle.

Enjoy Lohengrin, the medieval tale of a mysterious knight who rescues a girl falsely accused of murder, under the condition of anonymity. German composer Richard Wagner’s 1851 melodies and the actors’ skilful performances ensure it will be a memorable show.

Sifawy Boutique ue Hotel spartanracearabia.com bia.com

Royal Opera House Muscat +968 2440 3300 rohmuscat.org.om

Oman International Exhibition Centre +968 2451 2109 omantrafficsafety.com

TRAFFIC SAFETY

11:00am Fish Frenzy

7:00pm 00pm Fright and nd Fun

On Thursday, the newest branch of Manhattan Fish Market in Al Khuwair is offering Hake and Ocean Perch fish and chips baskets for just OMR 1.

Celebrate Halloween loween before anybody dy else with PDO’s American merican Section. Dress up in your scariest, weirdest, craziest costumes and party ty like a maniac. Get your tickets before Thursday, OMR27 for non-members. embers.

Manhattan Fish Market Al Khuwair (on the service road) +968 2449 9621 manhattanfishmarket.com

Ras Al Hamra Recreation creation Centre, Qurum +968 9413 413 6792 americansectionPDO@ nPDO@ gmail.com mail.com m

PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED


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WEEKEND DOWNLOAD

Have you tried any of these five? What do you think of them? Did we miss any of your favourites? Tag us on Instagram @hiweekly_oman and tell us about it on facebook.com/hiweekly

VOLUME 10 ISSUE 41 OCTOBER 20, 2016

FALL COMEDY SERIES TO WATCH NOW October means the sun sets a bit earlier, the weather is little bit cooler, and our favourite TV shows are back. To help inspire some serious binge watching this weekend, Hi checked out three comedy TV shows that are returning to the small screen and one brand new arrival that is sure to earn rave reviews. WITH GAUTAM BHARGAV VISWANATHAN THE BIG BANG THEORY The story so far: When scientific geniuses Leonard, Sheldon, Howard, and Raj are not breaking new ground at Cal Tech, they’re often off on one of their marathon gaming sessions, waiting all night at a movie premiere or browsing the latest offerings at the comic book store. Their idyllic geek heaven is interrupted though, when Penny, an attractive waitress/actress moves in next door, changing the group dynamic. Now in its 10th season, the show features plenty of pop culture and scientific references including cameos by cult sci-fi personalities including Arthur Jefferies, Bill Nye, Will Wheaton, and even the legendary Stephen Hawking, the show has made geek culture cool. The current season is predicted to be its last, and is sure to be just as ribticklingly hilarious as the previous seasons have been. Genre: Comedy What it’s about: Four scientific geniuses have their lives thrown into orbit when an attractive neighbour moves in next door Run Time: 30 minutes Starring: Jim Parsons, Johnny Galecki, Kunal Nayyar, Simon Hellberg, Kaley Cuoco, Mayim Bialik, Melissa Rauch IMDB Rating: 8.4/10 VICE PRINCIPALS HBO has made plenty of great shows in the past. Band of Brothers and Game of Thrones are just two of the award-winning productions by the channel, and their latest experimentation with comedy, Vice Principals, follows suit as high-quality, thoughtful television. Set in small-town America, the show sees two high-school vice principals — the straight-laced,

no-nonsense Neil Gamby and the simpering, sociopathic Lee Russell—trying to outdo each other in a bid to score the principal job when the current principal leaves. Their world is turned upside down when college professor Dr Belinda Brown is offered the role instead, and they’re compelled to join forces in an unholy alliance to see her go. Genre: Comedy What it’s about: Two highschool vice principals who loathe each other are thrust together when a job they both covet is given to someone else Run Time: 30 minutes Starring: Danny McBride, Walton Goggins, Kimberly Hebert Gregory, Georgia King, Sheaun McKinney, Busy Philipps, Shea Whigham IMDB Rating: 7.9/10 MODERN FAMILY ABC’s award-winning comedy about an extended California family whose members very much reflect the times we live in, is back with its 8th season, and if previous seasons are anything to go by, we should be in for a lot more chortles and chuckles. Jay Pritchett is the patriarch of a family that includes his two children, Mitchell and Claire, his new Colombian wife and her two sons, and the extended families. With so many different personalities in the mix, things are bound to get a bit out of hand with misunderstandings galore, all of which are fodder for often poignant comedy in the show. The characters are able to take liberties with each other because they are family who will always be there for each other. Genre: Comedy What it’s about: Three families get into their own (and each

other’s) problems in an attempt to solve them, usually with disastrous results Run Time: 30 minutes Starring: Ed O’Neill, Sofia Vergara, Ty Burrell, Julie Bowen, Eric Stonestreet, Sarah Hyland, Rico Rodriguez, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Nolan Gould, Ariel Winter IMDB Rating: 8.5/10 THE SIMPSONS America’s favourite TV family is back on screens this October. Now in its 28th season, The Simpsons show is still as popular as it was when it began 1989. Homer, Marge, Maggie, Bart, and Lisa are back to entertain us with light social commentary for yet another season, and they’ve lost none of the humour that endeared them in the first place. Homer and Bart’s slapstick physical comedy as they try to get out of doing even the simplest of tasks with elaborately planned escapades contrast brilliantly with Lisa’s bitter intellectual sarcasm and Marge’s frustrated resignation towards her husband’s and children’s antics. The Simpsons is now one of the world’s longest-running TV shows, well worth watching to see if the show can continue to be relevant, funny, and downright addictive. Genre: Animation What it’s about: A brilliant satire based on the lives of an everyday working-class family that also pokes fun at current world affairs in a tongue-incheek manner Run Time: 30 minutes Starring: Dan Castellaneta, Harry Shearer, Nancy Cartwright, Julie Kavner, Yeardley Smith, Hank Azaria, Pamela Hayden IMDB Rating: 8.8/10

STEVE JOBS Read Walter Isaacson’s bestselling biography on one of the world’s most influential masterminds, Steve Jobs. The book is based on more than 40 interviews with the controversial co-founder of Apple, as well as interviews with family members, friends, and colleagues.

CARELESS LOVE Dive into the tumultuous, rock-androll world of Elvis Presley in Peter Guralnick’s book. The biography is a fascinating, no-holds-barred story of the artist’s life from his army service in Germany to his untimely death in Memphis, America.

MARTHA STEWART UNTOLD Martha is a famous, self-made millionaire and media mogul, who is known best for her cooking and housekeeping, but that’s all most of us know. Tyrone Jackson’s book offers a deeper, more personal look at the good, and the bad, that contributed to her success.

THE FIGHT The biography of Mohammed Ali by Norman Mailer, a commentator who used to call Ali’s matches, offers a sportsman’s view of The Champ’s dramatic professional and personal life.

MY STORY: MARILYN MONROE Words can’t describe the mysterious beauty that Marilyn Monroe exuded, a beauty that continues to hold a spell over people to this day. Though there have been countless biographies, you can now read her story in her words with this autobiography, published a decade after her death.

PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED

FIVE TO TRY BIOGRAPHIES


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TEE-OFF FOR A CAUSE STORY SWATI DASGUPTA

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ighting the epidemic of breast cancer is a cause anyone with a wife, mother, or daughter can get behind. It is an issues that is especially important here in Oman, as the latest report issued by the National Registry of Tumours puts the total number of registered cases of cancer here in the Sultanate at 1,314. As per the reports of World Health Organisation (WHO), breast cancer is the top cancer in women both in the developed and the developing world and the incidences are increasing in the developing world due to increased life expectancy, urbanisation, and the adoption of western lifestyles. The report says that early detection is the best way to control the progression, and for that, it’s mandatory to generate awareness. Hence various local organisations are joining hands for October, Breast Cancer Awareness Month, to raise money for cancer charities to aid in the fight for the prevention and cure of this devastating disease. Once such organisation is Muscat Hills Golf and Country Club, which has decided to host a Cancer Charity Golf & Fun Family Day on October 28, 2016. “Previously we have just concentrated on the Golf event and then the evening function. This year we would like it to be much more of a family event so that any golfers can go and have their usual fun round of golf plus we JOIN THE FIGHT want entertainment for the For further information golfers’ families, local Muscontact Sarah Goodyear: cat Hills residents, plus visi+968 9321 7462 tors to Muscat Hills. We want sarah@muscatgolf.com to make it a big community muscathills.com event with all the proceeds raised during the event going to Oman Cancer Association,” said Sarah Goodyear, marketing manager of Muscat Hills. And there are many ways to help, from attending to donating to the event itself. “Golf & Family Fun Day will be an evening event (for which) we are seeking donations of prizes, decorations, and entertainment,” Sarah explained. Various organisations have been invited to sponsor the prizes for the event which includes restaurant vouchers, hotel vouchers, spa/beauty therapy vouchers, airline tickets, beverages or food vouchers, shopping vouchers, memorabilia like signed football shirts, entertainment, decorations, fun family activities (bouncy castle, face painting, games), food sponsor and any other kind of donation. On October 28, there are a multitude of ways you can join the fight, whether you want to play a round, bid on prizes, donate to the event, or volunteer your time. Muscat Hills is providing the perfect opportunity to end Breast Cancer Awareness month with a bang. —swati@timesofoman.com


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THE WEEKEND ESCAPE A Posh Place “In Town”

CORAL HOTEL STORY SHRUTHI NAIR PHOTOGRAPHY SALIM AL AFIFI

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hough I’m sure you’ve driven passed the Coral Hotel countless times on your way through Qurum, but I doubt you’ve ever noticed it. Tucked away in one of the tall, fancy buildings in the shopping district, it is easy to miss. As such, I honestly wasn’t exactly ecstatic when I found out that I would be spending a day and night there to review the relatively new property. Was it a resort? No. But it was an unexpected gem, and I ended up having a most enjoyable weekend there in the heart of the city. Coral Hotel is a part of a shopping arcade, situated in the centre of Qurum. The hotel essentially begins from the 2nd floor, where there is a reception and a waiting area. There I found myself drawn towards the courtyard, a beautiful set up with a cosy seating arrangement around a big, blue glass dome that essentially protects you from falling into the shopping mall. After surveying the sitting area, we went to reception where the polite receptionist gave us key cards to our “apartment”. Strange, I thought. Shrugging it off as a brain slip. My sole aim was to relax and chill in a different place not too far away from home, as

long as that happened, I was happy. I opened the door to my room and my jaw dropped. It was a house. A nice, big, beautiful, spacious, fully-furnished home. I had never been to a hotel apartment before, and honestly wasn’t even aware of the concept, so I found myself wide-eyed as I stepped in and walked around my new weekend home. The modern flat featured two large bedrooms, one hall, an open kitchen, and three bathrooms. There were TVs in all the rooms, big wardrobes in the bedrooms and the kitchen had all the appliances you could possibly need. I loved the warm golds, reds and cream colours in the space, which felt contemporary and classy. I lounged on the big sofa set, tested out the cushioned white chairs, and noticed lovely touches like a little white teapot set on the sidetable, which complemented the setting. The lighting was chic and elegant, and I was especially impressed by the obviously clear vision the designers must have had. Unlike most places I’ve stayed that are either fussy and old-fashioned or so modern as to be cold, Coral’s rooms seemed to casually say, I am a posh 21st-century apartment, wellequipped with modern comforts and facilities to make your stay, however long, convenient and comfortable.


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I was slowly starting to understand the purpose of this hotel. Unlike other tourist hotels, the Coral is situated in the heart of the city, easily accessible to everything. They were designed for those who want to feel, whether here on business or a personal visit, that they are at home in the heart of things, not on a remote holiday. A place to live the upscale, urban life, at least temporarily. We headed down to Sapphire restaurant, an all-day international restaurant where I enjoyed cheesy chicken spaghetti, hamour fish and rice, mashed potatoes, and roast vegetables, and a perfect slice of strawberry cheesecake. As usual, I only realised I’d overeaten after licking every speck of dessert off my plate. I waddled back to the flat where my friend and I began debating how to spend the afternoon. There was a heated argument about the benefits of an afternoon nap versus a trip to the gym. In the end, I hopped in my car to make the short drive to my fitness centre to attend the class I’d missed that morning in a bid to burn the calories I’d just inhaled. My friend chose to nap. I returned to my home-sweet-home and spent nearly two-hours lazying around in the bathtub, until my friend, now away, began banging on the door. We headed up to the 7th floor, which is home to a big gym, an aerobics room, two massage rooms, and a staircase leading up to our destination—the terrace. This was the perfect place to be at night, featuring a beautifully lit pool and the Cloud Base restaurant. But we had higher yet to go. Spying another set of stairs going up, we emerged in one of the coolest restaurant space I’ve seen in town. Made up of big, private cabanas that could comfortably

accommodate about 8 people, each one had its own television and AC inside. The best part was, standing up there, I could see pretty much the whole of Muscat — the busy streets, hundreds of buildings, and thousands of cars that looked like little toys far below. After having some hot chocolate, we went back to the room and watched a few TV series, but the awesomeness of the kitchen was too alluring, even for a non-cook like me. So, after two episodes of The Big Bang Theory, I decided that we had to test out our skills in the kitchen. City Centre was only a few minutes drive away, so we had only to decide what to prepare before heading out for ingredients. The options flew between us — fancy chicken machboos. Pizza. Omani vermicelli. We finally agreed to go for ready-to-make custard when we realised that we were both pathetic cooks who couldn’t afford to set the beautiful room on fire. We rushed to Carrefour and bought milk, custard powder, and some chips and cold drinks (in case the custard didn’t work out) before heading back “home”. In the space of a few hours, that was exactly what the Coral had begun to feel like. We spent the remainder of the staycation making custard (successfully no less), watching Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and crashing-out in our luxurious rooms later that night. A few hours later, it was time for breakfast, an Americanstyle affair complete with hash browns, scrambled eggs, hot chocolate, orange juice, and bread with jam, butter, and honey, delivered directly to the apartment. As I drove home later that morning, I realised that I was going to miss the place. But before I could wallow in nostalgia, I began to imagining the next time I felt the need for a change of pace, but not a change of city. I smiled, realising that I now had “a place in town” ready and waiting for me anytime I felt the need to escape my routine, without totally checking out. — shruthi@timesofoman.com

Coral Muscat Hotel & Apartments Near Sabco Centre, Qurum +968 2465 2888 hmhhotelgroup.com/coralmuscat Nightly, monthly, and yearly rentals available.

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Little Black Dresses

STORY SALIM AL AFIFI | PHOTOGRAPHY ALI JANI

Sunnies Sunn Su nnnie iess (Koton) OMR5.9 +968 +99688 2206 22 0196

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t’s often said that ‘black is the new black’, a comment on the fact that black is a colour that never goes out of style, can be worn on almost any occasion, and sets a decidedly sophisticated mood. Many women find themselves in a colour quandary, wondering how to stand out in that oh-so-iconic wardrobe essential, the LBD (little black dress). This versatile style staple should be in-and-of itself simple, letting well-chosen accessories shine. This is where styling black dresses can get tricky or expensive. Pick the wrong accessories and you could end up looking sadder than an Adele song. But great style doesn’t have to cost a fortune, and to that end, I headed out with a friend this weekend to help her find her perfect LBD and accessories at Oasis Mall in Al Khuwair. We ended up with two looks that had tons of high style for a tiny pricetag.

Go Leather or Go Home Best for: Concerts, parties, casual outdoor gatherings Let’s say you have a Rihanna concert coming up, or a winter barbecue, or a club opening. You’re going to want to stand out, and the instant edge and texture of leather (or faux leather) is a great way to do just that. Give the look even more texture and a casual, chic vibe with a contrasting dark denim. Go with a long sleeved, dark blue jacket for loads of swagger. Bonus points if the jacket is crop-top. Now add your sparkle. Go subtle with a pair of matte colour bangles with a touch of gold and break up all that black with a long, delicate statement necklace. Avoid wearing chunky necklaces, you already have plenty of texture and pattern going on up top. To that same end, leave your massive handbag at home and opt for a small clutch, either in plain black or with simple gold accents, because tonight, your bag isn’t your statement piece. You’ll be wearing your wow-factor on your feet. Opt for knee-high boots, holographic pumps, or glittery sneakers. Choose shoes as loud as you can stand, it will take your ensemble from subdued to seriously stylish. Throw on a pair of gold accented sunnies and you’re ready to slay.

Multiple Bangles Multltl ip Mu plee B annglles es (New (Ne New w Look) Look Lo ok)) ok OMR4 OMR4 +968 2206 0194

Long Necklace (New Look) OMR5 +968 2206 0194

Leather Mini Dress (Iconic) OMR12.5 +968 2206 0644

Black Clutch (Koton) OMR9.9 +968 2206 0196

Glittery Sneakers (Iconic) OMR13.6 +968 2206 0644

Dark Denim (Splash, Centrepoint) OMR13.5 +968 2206 0160


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The Mighty Mini Best for: Fancy dinners, classy work events, and posh outings Medusa Necklace (Iconic) OMR2.2 +968 2206 0644 Black Mini Dress (Iconic) OMR11.5 +968 2206 0644

Who said a mini dress can’t be formal? Elegance is all about simplicity, so a classic LBD with a straightforward cut and straight-lined design is the perfect base for a go-to classy look. Any material can work, though easy-to-wear (and care for) cotton is the typical choice. The best part about a simple dress is that you can add carefully selected visual interest and shine with gold tone jewellery. Go for a single, chunky necklace. For our look, I selected a medusa-esque tigress head necklace, and to play off of this animalistic theme, we added a gold clutch with a subtle animal-inspired pattern. If your clutch has a sling, remove it or tuck it inside, as the overthe-shoulder action can make your look feel more casual. In keeping with the understated theme, pick a simple pair of black high heels with, at most, a subtle gold accent. We found loads of heels in Iconic, many with lovely gold accents like the pair we ended up with, a patten leather stiletto with a fierce golden heel tip. Though you could add a bracelet to your look, whenever styling an elegant look, remember the words of the most tasteful woman who ever lived, Coco Chanel. Once you’ve dressed, and before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take at least one thing off. —salim@timesofoman.com

Gold Clutch (Iconic) OMR4.4 +968 2206 0644

High Heels (Iconic) OMR18 +968 2206 0644

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EDITOR’S

PICK

THE BRUNCH IS BACK STORY FELICIA CAMPBELL PHOTOGRAPHY MEHDI TAGHAVI

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very weekend, I have fantasies about a leisurely morning or afternoon meal spent under softly swaying palms taking in a view of crashing waves. Every weekend, I wrack my brain trying to think of where we can go (even in this late summer heat, I’m a dedicated beach person) and the ocean-front restaurant at Al Bustan Palace always comes to mind. But alas, closed for the summer, I move on, ever in search of the perfect seaside venue. But as of last weekend, the wait is over. Beach Pavilion is open for the season. For me, Beach Pavilion is about as perfect a place as I could ask for when

it comes to brunch, that long, lingering weekend meal. I want a place where I can hunker down and pass the hours looking out over the ocean, feel the cool sea breeze, listen to some music, and have an endless supply of coffee, sparkling water, and food at my disposal. Last year the restaurant featured house music, indoor and outdoor seating, and several inclusive brunch options for their surf and turf kind of buffet. A few things have changed this year, as the restaurant launched a new Caribbean brunch theme. Now the music has Latin flavour, as do many of the dishes on the decidedly more seafood-heavy buffet line. There is a sushi, oyster, and chilled seafood bar, a ceviche station along with the returning selection of fine cheeses and breads, a kids corner, and grill stations

that turn out perfect lobster tails, Jamaican skirt steak with barbecue sauce, Puerto Rican chicken legs with a pineapple chilli sauce, and open-fire-cooked black beans and rice in coconut milk. There is, of course fresh fruit, ice cream, and homemade dessert to finish things off. What hasn’t changed is the absolute pleasure of dining directly on the beach in tranquil place that practically begs to be savoured as much as the fine foods on your plate. Now when the oceanfront-brunch-itch strikes, I needn’t agonise where to go. I know that there is a place waiting where I can grab a fresh coconut, let the sound of crashing waves and merengue wash over me, stair out at the watery horizon, and let the world just slip away. –felicia@timesofoman.com


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BEACH PAVILION Al Bustan Palace-A Ritz-Carlton Hotel Reservations: +968 2476 4000 (ext 1010), boxoffice. albustan@ritzcarlton.com Caribbean Brunch Every Friday, 1:30pm – 5:00pm OMR 25 + taxes (inclusive of soft drinks) OMR 39 + taxes (Inclusive of specialty beverages) OMR 49 + (Premium Bubbly Brunch) OMR 12 + taxes for children (6-12 years old) Children under 6 years old dine for free.

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OMANI SLANG A L L A B O U T H A I R A N D S T Y L I N G Interspersed with the Arabic conversations overheard throughout the capital city, even native Arabic speakers might be surprised to hear some unfamiliar words. Though Arabic is the official language in the Sultanate, there are all kinds of words and phrases that are purely local. Here’s your monthly primer from Hi’s Omani team members, Salim and Asmaa. STORY SALIM AL AFIFI & ASMAA AL BALUSHI ILLUSTRATION ISIDORE VIC CARLOMAN


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HEAD TURNING TURBANS STORY SHRUTHI NAIR

PHOTOGRAPHY ALI JANI


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ost people assumed that the tradition of Arab women covering their hair has purely religious roots and reasons, but the hijab was originally worn by women in the Middle East as a symbol of social status long before the time of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Women who belonged to well-to-do families and did not have to earn their own living were allowed (or could afford) to be veiled, which added to their mysterious allure. Later, it is believed by some, that the hijab was only worn by Prophet Muhammad’s wives, as his house doubled as a community mosque. Over the eras, head covering has been adopted by many Muslim women as a sign of their Muslim identity, a symbol of modesty, or as a statement of personal style, which, just as in days of yore, is associated with feminine mystic. Recently, amidst storms of racial and religious discrimination and polarisation, the international digital media outlet, The Huffington Post, launched the #HijabToMe

campaign through which women around the world could post on social media about wearing the veil. Some said that the hijab made them feel empowered, others simply said that wearing one is their personal right, others still said that the hijab denotes their freedom of choice and expression. A great number didn’t mention religion at all, explaining that, like the women who came before them, the hijab is about beauty, fashion, and confidence. This ancient tradition has gone through some decidedly modern adaptations, from designer scarves and colourful, flowy sheilas to the latest hijab trend to take Oman by storm — new, ubercool turbans that I first came across when I met the petite, dynamic Nadia Al Shamsi, owner of Mazayen Oman, a custom jewellery and accessory brand that she both designs and produces herself. She has imported turbans and adorned them with custom embellishments, in hopes of introducing the trend to the Omani market to give women a colourful, stylish, alternative way of covering. The idea came to her when

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she was styling her beach-a-colada collection of light, simple summer jewellery. She began thinking about the fact that Omani women, like herself, would want to cover their hair, even at the beach, and there ought to be a more cooler option. Turbans would protect them from the sun and are easy to wear. They just needed a little extra bling for the bejewelled women of the Sultanate, which she was able to add. Hand made out of elastic and polyester, the turbans fit all head sizes, and most of the adornments are gold plated and feature embellishments such as Fatima’s hand, precious stones, Arabic letters, and traditional Omani designs and range between OMR8 and 12. The Omani entrepreneur behind them is a living example of the graceful strength that the veiled women of Arabia represent, and she has created beautiful head coverings that make a serious style statement for any woman, Muslim or not, who is hoping to add some old-school glamour and a coy dash of mystery to her look. —shruthi@timesofoman.com

GET YOUR TURBAN ON Mazayen Al Khuwair, Al Maha Street +968 9468 3017 mazayen.net Turban prices range from OMR8 to OMR12

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Portrait of Salman Khalifa Al Fazari by Haitham Al Manji

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After the Rain, Comes a Rainbow A TALE OF FAMILY, CONFLICT,

PASSION, AND CONTOUR KITS

STORY SALIM AL AFIFI

In 2012, Salman Khalifa Al Fazari decided to express his love for beauty and art in a way that challenged the status quo when he dove into the femaledominated world of makeup artistry. Four years later, he is proud to be known in the industry simply as “The male Omani makeup artist”.

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Portrait of Salman Al Fazari Photo: Ibrahim Al Azzi

VOLUME 10 ISSUE 41 OCTOBER 20, 2016

alman was born in 1994 in Muscat where, from an early age, he fostered his love of art any way he could, starting off painting small canvases as a boy and moving on to experiment with other mediums as he soughtout his true passion in the realm of art. “After finishing high school, I decided to try to study graphic design. I would have rather studied fine art, but I felt that design would be the closest field I could go after with my father’s approval,” Salman explained. But, his father shot-down the idea, seeing graphic design as a feminine trade. He insisted that his son instead study mechanical engineering. Though hugely disappointed, Salman obediently walked down the path laid before him, though at times he felt “utter revulsion,” at the stifling idea of living his life in a technical, rather than a creative way. He finished his studies and graduated, but rather than relief, his heartache grew as he found that his longing for an

artful life had only intensified. Despite the disapproval he was sure to face if he was found out, Salman simply couldn’t bear it any longer, so he began exploring alternative art forms in his spare time. In the process he discovered a form of artistry that went beyond burlap and acrylic dyes, an art form practised on human canvases. He was smitten with makeup art from the very beginning; fascinated with the techniques and the materials themselves. Makeup, from its delicate powders in shades of brown, to its shiny and glossy wax lipstick colours , to the powdery scents and textures, it was a tactile form of expression that represented to him a whole new world of possibility. Salman knew for a fact that his family wouldn’t approve of this trade, but he couldn’t keep trying to change himself to please others. “It was time to stand up for what I believed in, and to just hope that my family would eventually accept me and maybe even appreciate my craft,” he said.

HE DISCOVERED A FORM OF ARTISTRY THAT WENT BEYOND BURLAP AND ACRYLIC DYES, AN ART FORM PRACTISED ON HUMAN CANVASES.

Photo: Prince Ayham Model: Abed Al Balushi

Photo: Prince Ayham Model: Zahra

Photo: Prince Ayham Model: Abbas Al Essa


VOLUME 10 ISSUE 41 OCTOBER 20, 2016

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Photo: Prince Ayham Model: Sultan Mughairi

Photo: Prince Ayham Model: Amran Al Balushi

Mind made up, in 2012, Salman stepped into the world of professional makeup. Hitting his first roadblock almost right away, he discovered that he would not be able to attend training workshops in Muscat, as they were all for ladies-only. So he focused his time and energy studying on his own, watching hours of videos and taking online tutorials. Not long thereafter, he started saving money to buy himself a professional makeup kit, which he used to experiment and practice on his own face. “I couldn’t help but get excited whenever I bought new makeup, but I’d wait for my father to walk out the door just to bring out my new toys and play,” Salman said. But just as his proficiency and confidence had begun to grow and he began to practice makeup on siblings and close friends, his father caught wind of what he was doing. In Omani society, being a male makeup artist can be seen as shameful by many families, including Salman’s. “My dad used to be ugly about this profession. He would yell at me whenever I went to do my thing to a point of a quarrel,” he said. “There was this one time he refused to let me leave the house after I signed a contract for a makeup job, so I had to sneak out.” One day Salman came home to find one of his expensive makeup kit smashed into pieces. “The saddest part was me sitting on the floor, cleaning up the mess made up of something I dedicated all my savings to.”

CONTACT THE ARTIST Salman Khalifa Al Fazari +968 9537 1223 Instagram: @salman_alfazari Snapchat: @salman_khalifa

Though his father’s contempt for his chosen profession remained, his mother supported him without question and did her best to help ease the tension with the rest of the family. She proved to be a great source of strength, along with his friends, who surprised him by replacing his expensive, branded makeup as a gift and token of their belief in him. “I’ve known Salman since the Grade XI, and to this day he is still Salman, not a pompous artist, which makes us, as his friends, proud,” said Mohammed Al Rashdi. Salman began to throw even more of his energy into transforming his craft into a fruitful career. He began collaborating with talented local photographers Prince Ayham, Haitham Al Manji, and Ibrahim Al Azzi. He teamed up with Prince Ayham to create phenomenal, magazine-worthy editorial shots, while he worked on experimenting and elevating his makeup techniques to explore imaginative designs for his shoots with Ayham. “Some people say that he’s on the wrong track for embracing makeup and this kind of art, but others appreciate the struggle,” said Prince Ayham adding that, “what he does is so unique it has made him a brand, and not a just a person.” As he continued to hone his craft and work with other creative individuals, his creations evolved even further, with works ranging from devil and joker inspired

makeup to conceptual looks like a blackedout, tearful face that was featured on an anti-terrorism poster (see it on our cover). His skills, which vary from basic makeup to editorial and innovative styles, all stem from his childhood love of art and beautiful transformations. And Salman still enjoys other forms of creative expression like painting, dancing, and singing in his free time, all of which influence his professional creations. Salman went on to work with Media Star Productions, Ooredoo, Kuwaiti actor, Abdul Mohsin Ahmed, and countless photographers and models across Oman. Today, Salman has become a known entity in the region, referred to by most simply as The Omani Male Makeup Artist. He’s grateful and proud of his accomplishments. Salman’s entire family has finally become acquainted with his fabulous work. They now endorse and value it. Even his father has come around. Salman’s transformation from a fearful boy, afraid of being judged, to a man who knows exactly who he is, has been as dramatic a change as those of the faces on which he practices his craft. His relentless pursuit of his passion has paved the way for other male makeup artists in the region and an inspiration to anyone who is willing to risk being judged, criticised, or shamed in the name of honest, pure, expression of self. —salim@timesofoman.com


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VOLUME 10 ISSUE 41 OCTOBER 20, 2016

Dar Al Atta’a Association celebrates World Food Day On October 16, 1945, the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United

Nations was founded, built upon its belief that ‘the goal of freedom from want of food, suitable and adequate for the health and strength of all people can be achieved’. Celebrated around the world, World Food Day honours that day and our commitment to defeating hunger. This year Dar Al Atta’a Association celebrated the World Food Day on October 15 with the help of seven schools (Muscat Private School, Oman International School, Azzan bin Qais Private School, Shatti Al Qurum School for Girls, British School Muscat, TAISM and Montessori Nursery) and 12 corporates such as (Bank Nizwa, Ooredoo, Oman Flour Mills Company, Khimji Ramdas, Al Ahlia Insurance, Al

Cochin Gold’s renovated showroom in Ruwi was inaugurated by South Indian filmstar, Jayaram. Photos by Purushothaman K.

Bustan A Ritz Carlton, Shangri La Bar Al Jissah Resort and Spa, InterContinental Muscat, Cameron Services Middle East, Crowne Plaza Hotel, Holiday Inn Hotel and Sheraton Hotel). The schools and corporates that participated encouraged their students and employees to help Dar Al Atta’a collect donations that were later sorted into food boxes before being distributed to families identified by the association. Dar Al Atta’a was able to collect ration packs for 500 families. Maryam Al Zadjali, Chairperson, Dar Al Atta’a said: ”This is the seventh time that we have supported the World Food Day initiative in collaboration with schools, hotels and corporates to provide those

less fortunate with the food supplies they need during this special day and it was exciting to see the volunteers helping out including kids, they were working all towards one goal. On behalf of Dar Al Atta’a I would like to thank all the participants and volunteers in making this initiative a success and look forward to working with them in other initiatives.” Dar Al Atta’a is a Muscatbased non-profit voluntary organisation which was set up in 2002. It endeavours to improve the lives of those less fortunate than themselves both in the capital area and beyond. The group periodically organises fund raising events in order to be able to reach their goals and enrich the lives of others.


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VOLUME 10 ISSUE 41 OCTOBER 20, 2016

Apollo Hospital and City Opticals organised a Free Medical Camp and Eye Check Up Camp in Ruwi Church Hall in coordination with Mangalorean Community and Humanity First Foundation.

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Rajyoga Centre celebrated UN International Day of Non-Violence with Indian Embassy.


Hi 20 10 2016  
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