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OMAN’S LARGEST CIRCULATED WEEKLY — 46,760 COPIES

VOL 10 ISSUE 58 / FEBRUARY 16, 2017

PG 14

THIS WEEK IN OMAN

GO TRENDING Our new column “Trending this Week” gives a sneak peek of the latest news and views that are trending on social media and also the ones that you missed before. PAGE 8

PLAY, PAINT, AND PARTY Visit Al Mazaar Edutainment Centre at Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa and let your children explore their creative sides. PAGE 10

SAY YES OR NO In a casual conversation in Arabic there are different ways of saying yes or no. We compile some of the interesting ones, perhaps not heard before. PAGE 12


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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 Chief Executive Editor Scott Armstrong scottarmstrong@timesofoman.com felicia@timesofoman.com

Executive Features Editor Felicia Campbell Features Production Editor Swati Dasgupta swati@timesofoman.com Research/Copy Editor Ashish Dubash shruthi@timesofoman.com

ashishdubash@timesofoman.com

Associate Editors Salim Hamood Al Afifi Shruthi Nair

salim@timesofoman.com

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

richard@timesofoman.com

Production Manager Shafi Shaik On The Cover Photography by Mehdi Taghavi Design by Geri B. Sonny 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

CIRCULATION 24726600/24726666 Ext 135/136 circulation@timesofoman.com

ADVERTISEMENT 24726600/24726666 exT 435/193 hi7ayam@hotmail.com

SAY “HI” ON SOCIAL MEDIA facebook.com/hiweekly twitter & instagram: hiweekly_oman


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What are you doing this weekend? Tweet us @HiWeekly_Oman; tag us in your weekend instagram photos @hiweekly_oman; or share with us on FB/hiweekly

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THURSDAY

8:00pm Sober Laughter

Do you want to be around sober people and have sob fun? Then head to Bistro T 64 and watch Oman’s first standup comedy show sta featuring featuri Abbas Al Lawati that will w take place amidst vibrant ambience and a vib great Italian food. Bistro 64, Jawaharat Al Bist Shatti +968 9628 6783

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11:00pm Shady Party Brin your shades to this Bring quirky Bollywood themed quirk party and enjoy some p Bollywood Bollywo music and flaunt your moves. Stag entry you OMR10. Couples free O before 12am and ladies free all night. On the Rocks, Golden Tulip Seeb +968 2451 0300

Your calendar of th the he h hottest ottest events happ happening in Muscat this weekend

FRIDAY

1:00pm No Flight, Just Fight This 2-hour programme offers a course on street survival techniques to teach self-defence when necessary. Vantage International Muscat, Mumtaz Residence +968 9343 5226

7:00pm A Romanian Valentine’s It might be a few days after Valentine’s Day but it’s never too late to celebrate love. Join the traditional Romanian party at the PDO Club. OMR15 Sohar Garden, PDO Club +968 9417 8455

PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED


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SATURDAY 6:00am Crawl and Climb

Conquer the snake canyon starting off with a roped descent followed by crawls and climbs and every other technique that will test your strength, will-power, and spirit. Twenty3 Extreme

THE WEEKEND LINEUP

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THE WORLD OF WEB MIGHT BE COMPLEX, BUT IT HAS CERTAINLY BECOME AN ESSENTIAL PART OF OUR LIVES. ACCORDING TO STATISTICS, AN AVERAGE ADULT SPENDS MORE THAN 20 HOURS PER WEEK ONLINE. SO IT IS FAIR TO GIVE THE VIRTUAL UNIVERSE ITS FAIR SHARE OF SPACE HERE.

TR EN DI NG

THIS WEEK IN CASE

YO U M I S S E D I T

SUPERBOWL 2017: You can catch a glimpse of the best of Superbowl 2017 including Lady Gaga’s astounding performance, the flying drones, and more on timesofoman.com/hiweekend

TOP FIVE OMAN VIDEOS: Hi Weekly has picked five videos that have visually documented Oman’s magnificence in a brilliant way. Check it out on timesofoman.com/hiweekend

TOP TRENDING VIDEOS: While Barack Obama’s kitesurfing adventure with Richard Brenson is still the top trending video, there are other videos such as Ted Yoder’s video and a baby hippo’s first step that are gaining numbers and winning hearts. See the whole list of top trending videos on timesofoman.com/hiweekend

#popularhashtag #Grammys2017 #SendTwitterAValentine #TrudeauMeetsTrump

CELEB DEATHS: 2016 has been a difficult year for the glitzy and glamorous Hollywood film industry whereby we lost many of our beloved celebrities. Here’s a tribute at timesofoman.com/hiweekend


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LIST

CHILD’S

PLAY STORY SWATI DASGUPTA | PHOTOS SHABIN E.


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and badminton use,” informed Ece. In addition to the Adventure and Teen Zones, at Al Mazaar there is a dedicated children’s Party Box and a special lounge, where parents can relax and enjoy a cup of coffee at Zafran Café as their children have a ball at the party. After some real fun-filled moments as you walk towards the exit you will spot a collection of classic cars tucked away in a corner; they are indeed a feast for the eyes. These vintage cars are on exhibit seven days a week from 9am-8pm and as you walk around you gather some interesting history behind each one of them. There are more in store at this perfect play factory, which isn’t just a place to entertain your children but also to get them off their couch and explore their creativity. —swati@timesofoman.com

Al Mazaar Edutainment Centre Shangri-la Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa Open daily from 9.00am to 8.00pm Bookings can be made at the Al Mazaar ticketing office Call +968 2477 6856 Instagram: @almazaar Twitter: @almazaar Facebook: @almazaaroman

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toddler walked inside the play area brimming with confidence; he didn’t have an iota of inhibition as he forayed into an unfamiliar territory at ease. Within minutes we could see him climb on to a ride while his mother waved him from a distance and walked out towards the adjacent café. We were at the entrance of the Adventure Zone in the recently launched, Edutainment Centre at Al Mazaar in Barr Al Jissah, watching the antics of a toddler on a bright and breezy Friday morning. Nestled inside Barr Al Jissah’s Heritage village this newly-built centre is one-of-a-kind edutainment centre and has everything that allows children to explore their creative side, from a dedicated zone where children can wield all their energies called the Spring Box and Oman’s first ever trampoline hall, to the Art Box, where you can let your creativity loose; Edutainment Centre has it all. As we walked inside the sprawling enclosed area towards the main lobby to buy our entrance tickets, we noticed a bunch of young girls busy with their paints and canvases unawares of all that was happening around them. We were at the Art Box. “The entire centre has been segregated into four different entertainment areas, what we refer to as boxes. Right now we have Spring Box, Art Box, Adventure Zone, and Teen Zone.” “Art Box is a unique concept promoting arts for the entire family that encourages children to create their own masterpieces while visitors can also get involved in art workshops – from T-shirt painting, origami, and sand art, to school art activities,” said Ece Barlah, marketing manager at Barr Al Jissah Resort. “Al Mazaar Edutainment Centre offers a dynamic programme of kid’s entertainment, sports activities, art, culture, and much more for adults and children alike to enjoy,” added Ece. As we walked past our eyes fell on a designated art wall which had colourful hand impressions. “This is the Hands of Oman wall, a unique concept that was initiated to promote art. The other art walls are Omani Orchard Wall, Rainbow Jigsaw Wall, You Create Wall, and Chalk Wall that intends to encourage interactive art among the visitors. Also, the gallery space showcasing the children’s artworks is a way to inspire youngsters to bring out their creativity. “At the Spring Box we have the first ever trampoline hall and the biggest of its kind in the region — with sports activities including basketball, climbing, and a specially-designed gladiator course; while the multi-purpose air-conditioned sports field is available for basketball, football,

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OMANI SLANG

S AY Y E S OR NO

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 Omani Hi editor, Salim Al Afifi. — hiweekend@timesofoman.com ILLUSTRATION ISIDORE VIC CARLOMAN

Heh Yes

Haa’a No


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He na’am

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Ella

Yes No

Heewa Yes

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STORY FELICIA CAMPBELL • PHOTOGRAPHY MEHDI TAGHAVI

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ith out of town guests coming to visit us in Oman, my husband and I wanted to give them a taste of what makes this country so special. The catch? They were coming for less than a week, ruling out Salalah as a stop on our tour. I began to think about what makes Oman distinctive from other places. One of the most obvious things is the geography. There are few places in the world where you can find stunning coastline, desolate mountain peaks tinged with stepped orchards, and the kind of sprawling desert that has inspired travellers and explorers for centuries. To explore all this, with four adults, what better vehicle than a Toyota? The Land Cruiser, afterall, might as well be the official vehicle of the GCC. This trip provided the perfect opportunity to put its younger brother, the Fortuner, to the test, to see if it could live up to the family legacy. Our journey began on the coast, right here in Muscat. Our picturesque city of white washed buildings, spectacular mosques, ancient souqs, and bountiful seafood is a fine example of the Sultanate’s coastal treasures. Next up were the historic castles and forts at the base of the Jabal Akhdar Mountains, and then an ascension of the peaks to the picture-perfect Alila hotel. From the high mountains we travelled down to the sea of sand that begins its sprawl in the small town of Bediyah. There we not only observed the spectacular desert views, but also enjoyed an authentic taste of local Bedouin culture at Bediyah Safari Tours where Hamed and his family were our hosts. We ended our whirlwind trip in Old Muscat, where there were so many things left to see and do. — felicia@timesofoman.com

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MUSCAT AND THE SEA 9AM VISIT TO THE SULTAN QABOOS GRAND MOSQUE I’m always surprised to find out how many residents of Oman have never been to this iconic structure. Built in 2001, the mosque is one of the most unique piece of architecture, combining various styles and materials, from intricate etched wood ceilings from India, to colourful tilework that is reminiscent of the mosques of Iran. The Persian carpet that adorns the main prayer hall is the second largest in the world, the first being in Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi. It took four years to produce this single piece carpet, that has 28 colours in varying shades. One of the main attraction is the chandelier hanging at the men’s prayer hall. With such diverse sources of inspiration and material, one might think the overall look would be disjointed, but instead the place is a visual feast, harmoniously bringing together otherwise disparate elements. It is a beautiful reflection of the country itself, whose openness to diversity is its most valuable asset. Visiting Hours for Non-Muslims: 8am-11am, Saturday-Thursday Entrance Fee: None Dress Code: Women covered to wrists and ankles with hair covered, men should wear long pants and long-sleeve shirts. 10AM BREAKFAST BY THE SEA Sleep late and then make your way to Shatti for the perfect Turkish breakfast overlooking the waves at the absurdly named Twins Fish and Chips. One breakfast is plenty for two people, with a variety of cheeses, olives, sometimes mortadella and herb fritters, cheese pastries, and more, served with thick, fresh-from-the-oven bread and a baked pot of peppered eggs. At OMR5, including tea, it is certainly the best breakfast deal in town. Twins Fish and Chips Oasis by the Sea (between Costa and Slider Station) +968 2234 4341

12PM WALK ALONG SHATTI AL QURUM BEACH There are few places to enjoy a brisk stroll in our car-centric city, and as my guests are avid walkers, I wanted to make sure and take them out to stretch their legs. One of my favourite places to do this is along Qurum beach. Whenever I walk through the palm tree lined paths in Shatti Al Qurum, I am reminded of what a spectacular place it is that we live. We left Tche Tche and began walking towards the Jawharat Al Shatti and Oasis by the Sea complexes. We meandered past them, continuing down the sidewalk through gazebos and white sand. At the end of the stretch, we turned around and found our way back to Oasis by the Sea where we stopped for lunch. 1:30PM LUNCH IN SHATTI There are plenty of restaurants in Oasis by the Sea, from Slider Station to Pizza Express, but my favourite of the lot is the humble Arax restaurant, which serves up the best falafel in Oman. I always order mine with fried cauliflower stuffed inside, along with sides of their creamy hummus and French fries. Two large sandwiches, hummus, French fries, and drinks typically cost OMR5, a great deal by my accounts. We ordered our lunch and took a seat at one of the metal tables out front. After lunch we stopped next door at Bateel to shop for dates. Arax Restaurant +968 2460 0935 Hours: 9am-12 midnight Bateel, +968 2460 1572 Hours: Saturday -Thursday, 9.30am-9.30pm

2:30PM SCENIC DRIVE After lunch, everyone was feeling a bit sluggish, but there was more to be seen, so we went for a scenic drive to further showoff the sparkling coastline. We made our way back up love street before getting onto the highway. We exited in Muttrah, driving along the Corniche, up passed Riyam Park, through the Gate Museum, and into Old Muscat. There we turned towards Sidab, winding up the mountain road, passed villages until we reached the Al Bustan roundabout. From there we turned right, driving past the Majlis Al Shura building, and getting onto the Qantab Road, heading to the iconic Shangri-la Resort. 3:30PM COFFEE AND SUNDOWNERS AT SHANGRI-LA We walked through the frankincense scented lobby and down to the courtyard where we found some chairs facing the beach. There we enjoyed cappuccinos and mocktails, until the sun began to wane. It was time to head home to rest and freshen up before dinner. Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort and Spa +986 2477 6666 7:30PM A FRESH FISH FEAST Turkish House Restaurant is the best place in Oman for fresh seafood. Period. The owner, a former fisherman himself, goes to the fish market every morning to select his seafood. We walked past the newer dining rooms closer to the parking lot, and headed for the original dining room set back behind the building. We settled in and were handed menus, which I promptly set aside. See, in my opinion, there is only one correct order at this fantastic place: Mixed mezze, a massive platter of hummus, baba ganoush, tabouleh, olive salad, red pepper slaw, and some fresh cut veggies, served with hot-from-the-oven, metre-long Turkish bread; pomegranate-dressed house salad called Rocket Salad, grilled jumbo prawns, and a whole grilled fresh fish. The waiter will tell you which types are available, and which is the correct size for your group. We went with the snapper. If you aren’t stuffed to the gills after your meal, the restaurant also serves a very good knafeh for dessert along with strong Turkish coffee. The mezze costs OMR3. Turkish House Restaurant Al Khuwair (near Muscat Pharmacy) +968 2448 8071 Hours: 11.30am-12.30pm


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9AM ROAD FOOD We packed a picnic lunch in our cool box, but before heading off to Jabrin, we needed to fuel-up Omani-style. So we headed to Tea House in Al Khuwair, a tiny karak tea shop attached to the mosque behind the Ministry of Education. We honked twice and the blue uniformed shop vendor came to our window. We ordered my favourites: Special Karak; a spiced tea sweetened with creamy condensed milk, Saffron Karak, Zaatar Karak; and an Original Karak, that is black tea simmered with sweet, condensed milk. To eat, we opted for paper thin Omani bread, stuffed with egg, cheese, and Chips Oman (for the salt and crunch) and another spread with sweet honey and cheese. Tea House Al Khuwair ( behind Tender Board) +968 9426 4555 12:30PM EXPLORING JABRIN CASTLE The Jabrin Castle is my favourite of the many, many old structures scattered throughout the country. Unlike some of the more recently restored forts, the castle has retained many of its original elements, like the intricately carved wooden ceilings. Exploring from one room to the next (each of which are well marked with their original purpose) is not a redundant task, as all the rooms are distinct in their decoration and style. It is incredible to feel the ingenious engineering of the ancient structure, whose interior is 10 degrees cooler in the summer and warmer in the wintertime. After wandering through the halls of the ancient place, and taking lots of photos, it was time to head up the mountain. Jabrin Castle Al Dakhiliyah Region +968 8007 7799 Hours: 9am-4pm (Saturday-Thursday); 8am-11am (Friday) 1:30PM A SCENIC MOUNTAIN DRIVE The winding route up Jabal Akhdar is one of the most scenic in the country, offering jaw-dropping views of the jutting peaks and sharp cliffs of the Hajar Mountain range. Even if you don’t choose to stay in Jabal Akhdar overnight, the drive alone is worth taking out of town guests on. There are several scenic overlooks where you can park and take photos, and as you get closer to Saiq village, there are also small parks with picnic tables. If you need petrol or provisions, there is a gas station in Saiq, but there is little to nothing in terms of restaurants or proper markets, so it is best to bring your lunch with you. 3:30PM CHECK-IN TO YOUR POSH LODGE We were fortunate to arrive at Alila just after a rainstorm, so the mountains surrounding the eco-friendly, ultraluxurious resort were enrobed by thick fog. We checked in and were shown to our rooms. There are no bad rooms at Alila, as each one boasts incredible views of the mountains and gorges, bathrooms that seem to be ripped from a page in Architectural Digest (along with exclusive toiletries made with local products just for the hotel), and generous balconies or terraces on which to enjoy the pristine calm and quiet over a cup of tea. It is a small, boutique property, which means a total lack of crowds. The dining room may ďŹ ll up in the evening, but the noise is never above a happy hum, and there is rarely a wait for your favourite table. The spa should be booked ahead, but they offer treatments for even the most spoiled spa junkie. They are now also adding additional active amenities, like guided hikes, rock climbing, and more. Which is wonderful. But my favourite thing about the place will surely remain the smaller things that make it a peaceful, thoughtfully local, mountain retreat. Alila Jabal Akhdar +968 2534 4200 alilahotels.com/jabalakhdar 7:30PM DINNER WITH A VIEW Dinner is included in the half-board rate at Alila, and it features a three-course menu that showcases many ingredients grown right there on Jabal Akhdar. The cliff-to-table dining began as a community initiative several years ago, and has since blossomed into both a delicious, hyper-local menu and a commendable social development success.

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THE ROAD TRIP RIDE: 2016 TOYOTA FORTUNER So, how did our vehicle for this whirlwind adventure do? Let’s just say the Fortuner lives up to the Land Cruiser legacy. One of the best things about the vehicle, which we drove on freeway, mountain roads, and desert sand, was the ground clearance. When sitting in traffic, we enjoyed a high level of visibility, and in Jabal Akhdar we had no issues with the steep declines and gravel paths. The real test came in the desert dunes of Sharqiyah Sands, where a miscalculation in our approach and descent would have been major drama for an SUV with lower bumpers. Instead, we peacefully made it to the top of the dunes overlooking our desert camp to watch the sunset, thanks to the Fortuner’s 30-degree approach and 25-degree departure angles and ground clearance of 225mm. No matter the terrain, it was as ruggedly capable as you would expect a Toyota 4x4 to be. As for comfort, we travelled the countryside with four adults comfortably in-tow, and the additional two rear seats, which folded conveniently to the side when not in use, would have made it easy to add two children to our mix. The interior upgrades in this model, including soft leather seats, premium “Fortuner” badging, a bluetooth capable entertainment system, a chilled glovebox, and power back door (on the 4.0L V6 option), gave the vehicle a premium feel. It was as tough as we needed it to be, and far more comfortable than we had expected, making it a great steed for our Omani adventure.

9AM HAVE BREAKFAST AT CLIFFSIDE The Alila breakfast is as magnificent as the views, featuring a buffet of fresh fruit, cereals, pastries, and salads, which is offered along with hot dishes from their menu. After an indulgent dinner, I opted for Swiss Muesli and some fresh vegetables. Linger over your coffee, or squeeze in a spa treatment before checking out. 11AM DRIVE FROM MOUNTAIN TO DUNES Begin your three-hour journey to Sharqiyah Sands. This is a time when you will be grateful to have a comfortable car, like our Fortuner, as the drive itself can get pretty redundant once you get down the mountain. After the shrubs and rocks seem to have all blended together, your path will end at a freeway where you will begin to see the outskirts of Bediyah. Turn right to get onto this main road, but before you do, call Hamed and his crew at Bediyah Safari Tours to let them know you are nearby. The main part of town is so tiny you might drive right passed if you are not careful. Keep an eye out for the Bediyah Shell Petrol Station, as the tourism office is directly across the street. If you are hungry, the Pakistani restaurant on the other side of the Shell is one of the better options in town for a hot meal, unless you pre-ordered a lunch from Bediyah Safari Tours.

inside, the beds are plush and dressed in soft, luxurious linens. The bathroom is attached, but open to the sky (making evening bathroom visits especially interesting as you can look up at the stars, but be warned, there isn’t hot water, so better to shower during the warm day). The rest of the camp consists of other rooms and luxury tents, connected by a paved walking path to the open air dining room, reception, and the outdoor majlis, where a raging fire is built each night. 5:30PM CHASE THE SUNSET Drive to the top of the surrounding dunes and settle in to watch the sun set over the sand. If you aren’t sure the best path, just ask one of the incredibly knowledgeable and friendly staff members.

2PM INTO THE SEA OF SANDS Follow your escort from Bediyah Safari Tours past an oasis of date palms, off the paved road, and through drifts of golden sand. The 20 kilometre journey takes around 40 minutes, and is absolutely beautiful.

7PM DINNER AND A BONFIRE UNDER THE STARS You will begin to smell the fresh bread and charring meat around six in the evening, and by seven, when dinner is served, you will be ready to attack the buffet like you haven’t eaten in years. The spread is wonderful, featuring salads, freshly made chapatti, rice dishes, curries, barbecued meat, and desserts. Once you have had your fill, ask to have your tea or coffee in the majlis, where the fire should be crackling. All the guest gather here to quietly look up at the massive spray of stars, or to share stories and make new friends. It is here that you will likely see that this particular camp has managed to capture all the best elements of the desert camping experience, with the oh-soimportant addition of a cushy, warm bed to retreat to at the end of the night.

3PM REST IN THE OASIS Against the dark sand, the collection of tents and bungalows of Safari Desert Camp are nearly invisibly camouflaged. The simple thatched roof chalets look humble from the outside, but

SAFARI DESERT CAMP (BEDIYAH SAFARI TOURS) Bediyah, Sharqiyah Hamed: +968 9635 0016; Office Manager: +968 9200 0592 omansafaris.com

2016 Toyota Fortuner Specifications and Highlights (4 Litre V6 reviewed) • Engine: 2.7L, 4 Cylinder, Dual VVTi | 4.0L, V6, Dual VVTi) • Transmission: 6-speed automatic • Leather & wood finish steering wheel with audio, MID, Bluetooth controls, and paddle shifters • 7” Navigation and Display Audio • Power Driver Seat • Push Button Start • Tilt and telescopic steering column • Cruise control • Illuminated entry • Chilled glovebox • Leather upholstery (Top Grade only) • Driver + Passenger Airbag & Knee Airbag (for driver only) • LED Projector Headlamps with DRL • Follow-me-home auto lights • Auto air conditioner • Power back door • 7 inch Navigation System • Front Air-conditioner - Rear Cooler • Vehicle Stability Control • Seven Seats • Keyless entry and start • Economy and Sport Modes • 18-inch alloy wheels • Rear Differential Lock • Rear View Camera • Hill Assist Control • Trailer Sway Control Authorised Oman Dealer: Saud Bahwan Automotive LLC Wattayah Showroom +968 2457 9000 toyotaoman.com


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3:30PM WALK MUTTRAH If you are still feeling spry, work-off your lunch with a walk up the Corniche to take in the views from Riyam, also known as “the incense burner park”, thanks to the large monument there. Then walk over to the old Portuguese watchtower, which was constructed during the Portuguese occupation prior to 1650. Then continue your stroll down the Corniche, back towards the souq. 4:30PM ENTER OLD MUTTRAH SOUQ The dark, winding corridors of the covered souq are home to marvellous jewellery vendors, perfume mixers, and garment hawkers, while the sprawling outdoor souq is where you can find Dhofari frankincense, spice vendors, cookware, and more. Wandering the area is an essential way to enjoy what was once the centre of commerce, and what remains an important local shopping area. Be sure to try local snacks being sold by vendors throughout the souq, especially the sambusas. 8:30PM DINNER AT OLD TURKISH The last night of a trip is always tinged with exhaustion and a bit of sadness, so keep your meal casual and delicious at this famed 24-hour shawarma and grill restaurant in bustling Al Khuwair. Whether you sit outside around the restaurant’s bubbling fountain, or opt for takeaway, you can’t go wrong with a large mixed grill, which comes with grilled lamb chops, minced meat kebabs, minced chicken kebabs, cubed chicken and meat kebabs, arais, hummus, tabouleh, garlic sauce, a scattering of French fries, and freshly baked bread. Alternatively, the shawarma plates, thin-sliced, perfectly seasoned chicken served over a bed of hummus, garlic mayonnaise, and a bit of salad along with fresh pita bread. Just be sure to ask for extra garlic sauce.

7:30AM RISE AND SHINE IN THE DESERT Have breakfast and spend some time testing your driving skills in the sand before starting off on your two to three hour drive back to Muscat. 12PM TAKE A HISTORIC WALK Drop your bags off at home, take a much needed shower, and then go stretch your legs with a walk in Old Muscat. The Gate Museum is a wonderful landmark that separates Muttrah from Old Muscat. Starting from the Gate Museum, walk through the old village houses of Old Muscat, past the French Museum, and along the palm lined side streets until you reach the Al Alam Palace. Take photos of the iconic castle before popping across the streets to the brand new National Museum (directly across from the palace). Along the way you will also pass the Bait Al Zubair Museum, the Omani French Museum, and Bait Al Baranda . Muscat Gate Museum Al Saidiya Street, Muscat Hours: Sunday-Thursday (8am-2pm) +968 9932 8754 Omani French Museum Qasr Al Alam Street, Muscat Hours: Saturday-Thursday (8am-1.30pm) The National Museum Al Saidiya Street, opposite Qasr Al Alam Palace Hours: 10am-5pm +968 2208 1500 Bait Al Zubair Al Saidiya Street, Muscat Hours: Saturday-Thursday (9.30am-1pm; 4pm-7pm) +968 2208 4747; +968 2208 4700 Bait Al Baranda Muttrah Corniche +968 2471 4262 Hours: Saturday-Thursday (9am-1pm; 4pm-8pm)

Old Turkish Restaurant Al Khuwair, Near Rawasco +968 9231 1156

2PM LOCAL LUNCH ON THE WATERFRONT Recover from your morning of walking and driving with a high-end meal of Omani-Indian fusion at the wonderful Kurkum restaurant, purportedly owned by a member of the royal family who has her very own family cook oversee the restaurant kitchen. A likewise local experience can be found on the other side of the souq at Bait Al Luban restaurant, which is run by a creative young Omani chef who is keen to put his own twist on Omani food. For cheap, delicious eats, the alleyway next to his fine establishment is home to Fishers Grilled, a nofrills restaurant that takes fish from the adjacent fish market and grills them to order to serve along with salad, hummus, and bread.

10:30PM COFFEE BY THE SEA No visit to Muscat is complete without a coffee or fresh juice on “Love Street”, the stretch of Shatti Road that runs between the Qurum roundabout and the Crowne Plaza roundabout. Lined with coffee shops, the views of the sea during the day are breathtaking, and at night, the view of the pageantry of the sports cars and customised 4x4s that young men drive up and down the stretch, are a sight to behold. We settled on Tche Tche café, finding a table on the roof where my father and I enjoyed some minty Moroccan tea and the others sipped on fresh juice cocktails. With the cool breeze and light Arabic music playing, it was an easy place to pass the time chatting and laughing late into the night. Tche Tche, Shatti Street, Qurum +968 9764 1610

Kurkum Restaurant, Muttrah Corniche, Muttrah +968 2471 4114, +968 2471 1143

Starbucks, Shatti Street, Qurum +968 2230 0169

Bait Al Luban, Muttrah, Muscat +968 2471 1842

Al Makan Cafe, Shatti Street, Qurum +968 8007 7707

Fishers Grilled, Muttrah, Muscat +968 9946 3561

Japengo Cafe, Shatti Street, Qurum +968 9289 2868


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HI WEEKLY

VOLUME 10 ISSUE 58 FEBRUARY 16, 2017

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TAISM hosted the 10th Terry Fox Run to raise funds for the leukaemia research department of Sultan Qaboos University Hospital (SQUH).


VOLUME 10 ISSUE 58 FEBRUARY 16, 2017

Dar Al Atta’a Association inaugurates Al Dhuwaiher Community Centre in Al Hamra A new community centre has been opened at Al Dhuwaiher in Al Hamra with the aim to empower women through education. The centre, opened by the Dar Al Atta’a Association (DAA), consists of a classroom where the Holy Quran would be taught, a hall equipped with books and six computers equipped with internet connection and was inaugurated by Zahir Abdullah Al Abri, a member of the State Council. The project aims to encourage reading and spreading awareness of science and knowledge among the students and the people of the state. The centre will give an opportunity to women who missed out on their studies. “The centre will also feature classes where the Holy Quran will be taught throughout

the year to even the illiterate women in the state. Classes to teach the Holy Quran to children will be undertaken during the summer holidays,” Maryam Al Zadjali, the chairperson of the DAA, said. The project will be managed by a committee of volunteers drawn from the Ahal Al Khair Team working under the office of Al Hamra state. A teacher to teach the Holy Quran will be appointed by the Ministry of Endowments and Religious Affairs. Engineer Abdullah Al Mazrooey, a board member of the DAA, gave a speech about the association’s duties. He informed that the DAA was formed in 2002 and was formally registered as a charity with the Ministry of Social Development in 2006. The creation of Al Dhuwaiher Centre at a cost of more than OMR22,000 is one of the association’s achievements.

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Indian School Muscat celebrated India’s 68th Republic Day with pride and patriotic fervour on the school premises.

HI WEEKLY

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HI WEEKLY

VOLUME 10 ISSUE 58 FEBRUARY 16, 2017

SUDOKU

HOW TO PLAY Fill empty cells with the numbers 1 to 9, so that each number appears once in each row, column, and area.

Level | Easy

3 7

4

7

8

1 9

1 9

2

5

2

7 7

3

6

6

3 8

3 8

6

2 1

3

6

5

7

2

7 6

Level | Moderate

4

2

4

6

5

3 7

7 5

4 7

8

2

1

1

3

5 2

9

6

5

3

6 8

7

9

5

2

6

4

9

Level | Difficult

9

6

3

1

2

4

8

8

2 1

7 6

2

8

4

7

4

7

9

8

5

1

1 8

9

9

7

6

7 4

PLAY AND WIN SUBMIT YOUR ANSWERS IN THE COMMENTS SECTION OF OUR SODOKU POST ON FACEBOOK.COM/ HIWEEKLY FOR A CHANCE TO WIN VOUCHERS FROM PIZZA MUSCAT. SOLUTIONS & WINNERS POSTED EVERY SUNDAY.



Hi weekly - February 16 2017