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all hail the KiNG how two brothers are revolutionising the art of the shawarma

how zara became the world’s biggest fashion retailer

why sir ben kingsley is the greatest actor of his generation

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HH Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum is the Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Airline & Group

Looking back at 2012, I reflect on a year of growth with our expansion to 15 new destinations: Adelaide, Barcelona, Buenos Aires, Dallas, Dublin, Erbil, Harare, Ho Chi Minh City, Lisbon, Lusaka, Lyon, Phuket, Rio de Janeiro, Seattle and Washington DC. This was a record number of new gateways for us and is testament to our commitment to connect the world via our global hub in Dubai. In 2013, we again look forward to building on this growth with the opening of Concourse A at Dubai International Airport. Built in partnership with the Government of Dubai, this facility is the world’s first purpose-built terminal dedicated to handle 20 Airbus A380s. Operated exclusively by Emirates, the Dhs11 billion (US$3 billion) concourse will increase the airport’s total capacity from the current 60 million to 75 million passengers per annum. With an ever expanding fleet of A380s, which currently stands at 31 aircraft and another 59 on order, the new concourse will be instrumental in aiding our forward growth trajectory. The A380 is a world-class aircraft and our new concourse is no different. Every part of the facility has been designed with the needs of our passengers in mind. The 11 storey concourse provides convenient connections with Terminal 3 via an underground train, as well as offering enhanced retail and food and beverage outlets, a spa, a hotel and two floors of exclusive lounges dedicated to our First Class and Business Class customers who will have direct boarding access from the lounges. At Emirates we consider ourselves to be more than just another airline. We are passionate about connecting our customers to new experiences with the help of our global network. Bridging the distance between cities with a world-class fleet of modern aircraft we are able to bring people and cultures closer together. Our new, state-of-the-art concourse will make the connections for our customers to exciting corners of the globe even easier. This year we will continue to grow our network and in the next two months alone will say ‘Hello’ to new passengers from Algiers and Warsaw as we launch routes to Algeria and Poland, with more to follow in the year ahead. This expansion of our hub and our network is intended to keep Dubai at the centre of global connectivity and stands as testament to the vision of the Government of Dubai in being at the forefront of aviation innovation and global connectivity. Emirates is committed to ensuring that this dynamic city remains at the centre of this growth, for now and the future. With the future in mind I would like to close by saying ‘Hello 2013, Hello Tomorrow’ and by wishing you and your families a safe and prosperous New Year.



Editor’s LEttEr

editor@ openskiesmagazine. com

This issue we sit down with legendary actor Sir Ben Kingsley and talk about his roles, his method and how he feels about ageing. We also take a trip down one of Istanbul’s most fascinating streets, and meet some of the artisans, shopkeepers and traders who are keeping this part of the Turkish capital alive. Another city we love is Madrid, and we get a guided tour of its hottest hotels, bars, clubs and cultural hotspots – if you are planning a trip to the city, it’s a must-read. Closer to home, we chat with the Wild Peeta brothers about their unique take on the shawarma – and how they have used social media to promote their business. We also figure out how Zara became the world’s largest fashion retailer, and we get a no-holds barred look at the life of a city trader. We hope you enjoy the issue.

Emirates takes care to ensure that all facts published herein are correct. In the event of any inaccuracy please contact The Editor. Any opinion expressed is the honest belief of the author based on all available facts. comments and facts should not be relied upon by the reader in taking commercial, legal, financial or other decisions. Articles are by their nature general and specialist advice should always be consulted before any actions are taken. PO Box 2331, Dubai, UAE Telephone: (+971 4) 427 3000 Fax:(+971 4) 428 2261 Email:

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edItor-In-ChIef Obaid humaid Al Tayer Group edItor & ManaGInG partner Ian Fairservice edItorIal dIreCtor Gina Johnson • senIor edItor Mark Evans • marke@ edItor Conor Purcell • deputy edItor Gareth Rees • gareth@ desIGners Roui Francisco • Olga Petroff • staff wrIter Matthew Priest • edItorIal assIstant Londresa Flores senIor produCtIon ManaGer S Sunil Kumar prduCtIon ManaGer c Sudhakar General ManaGer, Group sales Anthony Milne • dIGItal developMent ManaGer Helen Cotton • Group sales ManaGer Jaya Balakrishnan • deputy sales ManaGer Amar Kamath senIor sales exeCutIve Rahul Shivaprakash edItorIal Consultants for eMIrates: edItor: Jonathan hill arabIC edItor: hatem Omar deputy edItor: Andy grant websIte • ContrIbutors: Simon Johnson, Farooq Salik, Tahira yaqoob, gemma correll, Jake Bugg, Mathew grimm, Fergus henderson, Olivia gunning Bennani, Martin hinze, Andew Birbeck, Noah Davis, Susy hansen InternatIonal MedIa representatIves: AUSTRALIA/NEW ZEALAND Okeeffe Media, Kevin O’ Keeffe; Tel + 61 89 447 2734,, BENELUXM.P.S. Benelux; Francesco Sutton; Tel +322 720 9799, Fax +322 725 1522, chINA Publicitas Advertising; Tel +86 10 5879 5885 FRANcE Intermedia Europe Ltd; Fiona Lockie, Katie Allen, Laura Renault; Tel +33 15 534 9550, Fax +33 15 534 9549, administration@intermedia. gERMANy IMV International Media Service gmbh, Wolfgang Jäger; Tel +49 89 54 590 738, Fax +49 89 54 590 769, hONg KONg/MALAySIA/ThAILAND Sonney Media Networks, hemant Sonney; Tel +852 27 230 373, Fax +852 27 391 815, INDIA Media Star, Ravi Lalwani; Tel +91 22 4220 2103, Fax +91 22 2283 9619, ITALy IMM Italia Lucia colucci; Tel +39 023 653 4433, Fax +39 029 998 1376, JAPAN Tandemz Inc.; Tel + 81 3 3541 4166, Fax +81 3 3541 4748, NEThERLANDS gIO Media, giovanni Angiolini; Tel +31 6 2223 8420, SOUTh AFRIcA Ndure Dale Isaac; Tel +27 84 701 2479, SPAIN IMM International, Nicolas Devos; Tel +331 40 1300 30, TURKEy Media Ltd.; Tel: +90 212 275 51 52, UK Spafax Inflight Media, Nick hopkins, Arnold green; Tel +44 207 906 2001, Fax +44 207 906 2022, nhopkins@spafax. com USA Totem Brand Stories, Brigitte Baron, Marina chetner; Tel +212 896 3846, Fax +212 896 3848, brigitte.baron@


Open skies / january 2013


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contents / january 2013

44 30

A secret cabaret club discovered in the centre of Berlin


A tour of one of the coolest streets in Istanbul

Marrakech through the eyes of artist Hassan Hajjaj

68 48

We tour one of Europe’s most happening cities: Madrid



How local duo Wild Peeta have tweaked the shawarma

Open skies / january 2013


A slice of San Francisco life

How Zara became the world’s biggest fashion retailer

contents / january 2013


Inside one of Dublin’s most charming museums


Our columnist tells all about life in the finance fast lane


Sir Ben Kingsley on his most famous role

Front Bits Question/The grid Calendar The Street Skypod Room Consume Our Man

30 32 34 36 39 42 43 44

Twitter Pitch Mapped Local Knowledge Place Column Store BLD The Matrix

Main Zara Sir Ben Kingsley

45 48 52 57 58 60 63 64

news 68 78

Warsaw Recycling Map


Open skies / january 2013

89 92 98

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contributors Jake Bugg

Born in Nottingham, Jake has established himself as one of the major new talents in UK folk music. He has appeared on Later... With Jools Holland, and his eponymous debut album has been hailed as one of the best of 2012.

simon Johnson

The publisher and editor-inchief of That Magazine, a free arts and culture magazine aimed at the residents of Istanbul, Simon is an expert on the Turkish city. This month, he takes us on a tour of one of Istanbul’s most interesting streets.

andrew BirBeck

Andrew Birbeck is a writer and author who has written for a range of inflight magazines and The Irish Times. He has travelled extensively worldwide and lives in Dalkey just outside Dublin.


Open skies / january 2013

noah davis

A freelance writer living in Brooklyn, Noah writes about everything from sport to science. He has been published everywhere from Sports Illustrated and the Wall Street Journal to New York magazine and

olivia gunning Bennani

Olivia Gunning Bennani London’s magazine offices for Morocco twelve years ago. And did what we all contemplate: she stayed there. Her intrigue for the region is yet to be quelled. She lives in Casablanca with her family.





We take a walk in A tour of Kumbaraci Yokusu, Madrid’s best Istanbul’s most spots for culture, happening street music and food

Kasbah Cool Moroccan pop artist Hassan Hajjaj takes us on a tour of his favourite haunts in Marrakech, from boutiques to tea houses



An investment banker gives us the lowdown on life in The City


Berlin’s Secret Garden A HIDDEn CABArEt tHEAtrE In CEntrAl BErlIn HAs BEEn DIsCOvErED – A pIECE OF HIstOry HIDDEn FOr 80 yEArs

Four years been lost or ago real estate destroyed. developer He then Dirk Moritz did further was visiting a research in the public indoor city registers swimming and museums, pool in the all of which central Berlin revealed district of nothing. With Mitte with the help of the his daughter Berlin-Mitte hidden treasure / At one time Berlin had 136 cabaret clubs, most of which have now been destroyed when he municipal noticed a runarchives and down building next door. It was private collectors, he eventually 30 tonnes of garbage – from old hidden from the street, inside the found postcards of the interior sofas and shoes to construction courtyard of another property. dating from 80 years ago, when it rubble. But what caught his eye It was three storeys high and was a swinging cabaret hall and were the beautiful high ceilings, all of its windows were boarded restaurant. And so the property’s wall paintings and big theatrical up, deserted and dilapidated. rich history began to emerge. stage. And so began a quest to Out of curiosity, Moritz asked find out about the history of the the caretaker for the keys to see building. He found the owners – inside. What he found was a mess: a group of Czech heirs that had reacquired the property during the post-reunification privatisation of The Moritz Group former East Berlin. All the owners’ is always looking for We speak to dick Moritz, records and documentation had interesting venues

CEO of the Moritz Group, about his find

There are a lot of abandoned buildings in Berlin, but they are well known. This is the first time a building so hidden and closed up has been discovered. Cabaret theatres represent the culture of Berlin in the 1920s – there were 136 of them in the former Latin Quarter at one time, but most of them closed down before 1939.

The building was reconstructed after a huge fire in 1905 and was owned by a Fritz Schmidt, who ran a music hall under the name ‘Fritz Schmidt’s Restaurant and Festale.’ From 1900 to 1923 it was owned by the builder Oscar Garbem and subsequently it was sold to a family from the Czechoslovakia.


Open skies / january 2013

The ‘kabarett’ shows of the 1920s were very popular, combining acting, music and poetry in a political satire. The shows were part of a wide range of entertinment at the time, including ventriloquists, clowns and gymnastics.

that it can work with. We have converted a former chocolate factory which was shut in 1992, into loft apartments and town houses. I hope to find many more treasures such as the Secret Garden – and if this means clearing 30 tonnes of rubbish and rubble again, then I am happy to make that effort.


WHY ARE DETERGENT BOXES SO COLOURFUL? Detergent boxes were originally sold stacked on a shelf behind the counter of the local corner shop – this was in the pre-supermarket days, and customers would have to make a decision on a detergent brand (all of which offered broadly the same service) from a distance. Hence, the main detergent brands used their boxes as a colourful palette on which to lure the consumer in with bright colours and graphics – a shout for attention on a crowded shelf. Despite the fact that we now live in an age where we can browse through detergent brands at our leisure, the colour scheme has remained the

The Expert: Martin Lindstrom Author of: Buyology - Truth and Lies About Why We Buy

same. According to branding expert Martin Lindstrom in his book Buyology, colour plays a strong subconscious role in how we make purchasing decisions. He claims that when people make a subconscious judgment about a person, environment or a product within 90 seconds, between 62 and 90 per cent of that assessment is made on colour alone. With everything from the colour of M&Ms to butter packaging based on rigorous market research, it would seem that snap visual jusgements of a product play a huge role in what and why we buy.

THE GRID We are disappointed at the news that the brilliant Boss, starting Kelsey Grammer as the corrupt mayor of Chicago was cancelled after two series. It’s on ICE still - so get watching. (ICE, channel 45)

We are polishing our snorkels in anticipation of a trip to Phuket, the latest destination on the Emirates’ network. Diving, beaches, hiking, sunsets – this jewel of the Andaman has it all.

The V&A’s new exhibition, Light From the Middle East, continues until April 7th, and is a stunning collection of contemporary photography from the region. We urge you to visit if you are in London.



We have checked out The Archive, a new arts and culture hub in Safa Park, Dubai, and believe us, it’s worth the visit.

We love Elle Decor’s Shredded range of furniture created out of recycled magazines in conjunction with Belgian designer Jens Praet.

Welcome to the Vibrant Heart of Aqaba Launching Al Raha Village soon


Al Raha Village Aerial View

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january 20

MUMBai Marathon

one of only 35 road races certified as gold Label by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and with a first prize of $340,000 on offer, expect to see some of the world’s best marathon runners at the tenth mumbai marathon. the race starts and finishes at the spectacular Chhatrapati Shivaji terminus (formerly the Victoria terminus), a UNeSCo World heritage Site, and also incorporates the impressive rajiv gandhi Sea Link bridge that connects West and South mumbai.

Until January 27

Cartier-Bresson: A Question Of Colour

French photojournalist Henri Cartier-Bresson shot his many iconic images in black and white, so curator William A Ewing’s exhibition at London’s Somerset House is a bold and unique proposition. Featuring ten of Cartier-Bresson’s works never before exhibited in the UK, Cartier-Bresson: A Question Of Colour also features 75 works by 15 photographers who were influenced by the photographer’s term “the decisive moment,” including Belgian colleague Harry Gruyaert, American photographer Helen Levitt and Ernst Haas. This is your last chance to see this intriguing exhibition.

January 5 to 27

Sydney Festival

Founded in 1977, the Sydney Festival is now one of the highlights of the city’s cultural calendar. The three-week annual arts event incorporates dance, theatre, music and visual arts, as well as a number of talks, with more than 1,000 Australian and international artists taking part. Highlights of this year’s festival include screenings of master director Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey accompanied by music from The Sydney Symphony and Sydney Philharmonia Choirs at the impressive Sydney Opera

House (January 24 and 25) and former Talking Heads frontman David Byrne’s collaborative performance piece with St Vincent, Love This Giant, at the State Theatre (January 17 and 18). There are also a number of free performances, including a show by popular Australian musician Archie Roach, who has toured with the likes of Bob Dylan, Patti Smith and Billy Bragg (January 25).

Until january 23

PiCasso BlaCk & White

Pablo Picasso, one of the greatest artists of the 20th century, claimed “colour weakens,” so it is no surprise that some of his most famous works, such as the milliner’s Workshop (1926), the Charnel house (1944) and guernica (1937), are in black and white. this “chronological survey” at New York’s guggenheim includes paintings, sculptures and works on paper produced between 1904 and 1971. It is not to be missed.

Calendar 34

Sundance Film Festival

Open skies / january 2013

page 40

the street

Kumbaraci Yokuşu Want a glimpse behind the scenes into the generators of local culture? From mid-morning to the small hours, Kumbaracı Yokuşu might well be Istanbul’s most fascinating yet overlooked byway, in a city crisscrossed with streets and street culture. Rolling from the heights of pedestrian street Istiklâl Caddesi, Kumbaracı links the electric buzz and hillside splendour of the Pera/Beyoglu entertainment district with the up-and-coming port-level chic of Tophane/Karaköy. This street houses the workshops, studios and storefronts of everyone from traditional artisans and craftspeople to the latest generation of digitally equipped artists, designers and hi-tech music studios.

Words by Simon Johnson / Images by Martin Hinze


If you don’t have much room in your carry-on, you can always bring home something from local artisan Senay Sahin. Her jewellery and handiworks are both beautifully detailed, and beautifully small. Kumbaraci Yokuşu No. 56A 0212 293 82 40

4 Floors

This stunningly beautiful apartment hotel was designed by Sema Topaloglu and is managed by her brother, Murat Topaloglu. 4 Floors peels back years of disinterest and neglect by renewing a Beyoglu building that’s high on style and makes the most of her favourite media: timber, stone, brick and glass. Kumbaracı Yokusu, Tercuman Cikmazi sokak 20


Open skies / january 2013

Future Anecdotes Of Istanbul (FAI)

Since 2011 Ankara-born, London-educated designer Aslı and artist husband Can have run the Istanbul arm of Future Anecdotes, which was established in London in 2009 by Aslı Altay and Mary Ikoniadou. This graphic studio regularly transforms into a pop-up shop/gallery, featuring a single publisher’s art book range. Kumbaraci Yokusu 23A

Cumhur Usta’s Model Wooden Ship Workshop Engage in voyages of nostalgia? Cumhur and his scaled down vessels are a perfect way to bring home the romance of travel without seasickness, scurvy or an unexpected attack of pirates like the famed Beylerbeyi of the Mediterranean Barbossa. Kumbaraci Yokusu No.26 0535 279 94 46

Nihat Bey’s Workshop

Master craftsman Nihat may well be one of the last craftsmen with the love and dedication to faithfully restore and create antique wood and mother-of-pearl furniture. His workshop is a wonder house of lost treasures from another era.

A classic Pera era facade

Kumbaraci Yokusu 79-A 0212 243 11 00


Turkish cuisine is world-class, but that doesn’t mean other tastes shouldn’t be sampled sojourning in the city. New Zealander Chef Chris Maxwell and his Turkish international affairs graduate wife, Melis have created one of the most intriguing cultural crossovers in years. Linger a while and enjoy the flavours of French influenced, Vietnamese cuisine in the secluded comfort of this former artists’ den. Kumbaraci Yokusu, Camci Fevzi Sokak 36A 0212 24 39 281


Open skies / january 2013


Modern folk singer-songwriter Jake Bugg reveals his eight favourite tracks





John Martyn Solid Air

Nick Drake Hazey Jane

Michael Kiwanuka Home Again

Don McLean Vincent

He worked in a lot of weird Celtic guitar tunings, which I want to look into experimenting with. His lyrics are great, too – you can’t always follow them just by listening, but with a lyric sheet it’s something else.

This is from his more orchestrated album, Bryter Later. His phrasing is brilliant. I love Pink Moon, too – it’s really stripped back, just a man alone in a room.

I toured with Michael recently, and he’s cool, a really nice guy. His music has that old soul feel. It’s great that there are still people doing that.

I had no interest in music before I heard this song. I heard it first on The Simpsons when I was about 12, which is a pretty weird place to be turned on to this stuff.


Open skies / january 2013


Jimi Hendrix Red House This is blowing my mind at the moment, amazing electric blues. So many aspire to his standard, but I don’t think anyone is going to top him.


Stone Roses Love Spreads My favourite of their songs, but I could have picked I Wanna Be Adored, Waterfall; they’re all great. I never thought I’d ever get the chance to see them live, and they blew me away.


Leonard Cohen So Long, Marianne His lyrics are mysterious. You need to hear them a few times to let the meaning sink in. I also love One Of Us Cannot Be Wrong – another great tune, really sad.


CALENdAR January 17 to 27

Sundance Film Festival

Robert Redford’s Sundance Institute – set up in 1981 to boost independent cinema in the US – took over what was then known as the rather dull sounding Utah/US Film Festival in 1984, renaming it the Sundance Film Festival. Since then it has developed into perhaps the world’s most famous celebration of film after Cannes. It is certainly the highlight of the year for any fans of independent cinema. Visitors to the festival can expect music, panel discussions, tens of thousands of diehard film fans (last year’s festival attracted 46,731 people) and, of course, plenty of movies, with categories ranging from US and world cinema documentary and dramatic film to shorts and animation. There will also be a number of premiere screenings of films from established directors.


europe’s party town page 48


Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds If I Had A Gun Oasis’ (What’s The Story) Morning Glory is probably one of the best albums of all time. But I can’t really pick a track off it, so I’ll go with one of Noel Gallagher’s new ones.


Open skies / january 2013

Marsa Zayed Cruise Ship Terminal


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ROOM 139


Anyone travelling to Mauritius is expecting a small slice of paradise and, if your idea of paradise is pure relaxation, tranquillity and a beach just a short stroll from your bedroom, that is exactly what you will get if you check in to a Beach Villa at the striking Four Seasons Resort at Anahita. There are many large resorts in Mauritius, and this has a strong claim to the title of most impressive. The beach villa itself boasts a walk-in closet, free-standing bath, shower, iPod dock, LCD plasma TV with cable, DVD player (DVDs available from the games room) and a Nespresso machine. Outside you have a shower, a plunge pool and, across your covered patio and dining area and through your own private garden, direct access to the beach. Bicycles are provided for you to explore the resort, where you will discover an 18-hole golf course, fitness centre, tennis courts, a library, a kids’ club, an entertainment centre, spa, four restaurants, a lounge and numerous water sports options – many of them complimentary – including kayaks for exploring the surrounding coral reef.


Open skies / january 2013

INTERNET SPEED: 2MB PILLOWS: four iPOD DOCK: yes CLUB SANDWICH DELIVERY TIME: 25 minutes COMPLIMENTARY SNACKS: chocolates, fruit and macaroons delivery each afternoon TOILETRY BRAND: L’Occitane EXTRAS: Nespresso machine DAILY NEWSPAPER: a choice of short, printed newspapers from various countries is available. Specific titles available on request (24-hour notice required) TV CHANNELS: 40 VIEW: 4/5 RATE: from $685

consume BOOK

Cat’s Cradle, Kurt Vonnegut 2013 marks the 50th anniversary of Kurt Vonnegut’s novel Cat’s Cradle. The book was published a year after the Cuban missile crisis, at the height of the Cold War and the narrative follows John, a writer, as he sets about interviewing the children of fictional Nobel physicist Felix Hoenikker – who helped develop the A-bomb – for his book. John discovers that Hoenikker’s children possess a destructive substance – created by their father – called ice-nine, shortly before following them to the island of San Lorenzo, which is inhabited by adherents of a bizarre religion known as Bokononism – where the oddball tale reaches its fittingly barmy climax.


GanGster squad

Movie buffs would go and see this film based purely on its cast – Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling, Nick Nolte, Emma Stone and Sean Penn – but entrusting it to a director (Ruben Fleischer) with only two films under his belt and a writer (Will Beall) with no scripts on his CV was a gamble. Nevertheless, a film about LAPD officers combating gangsters in 1940s and 1950s LA, with a star-studded cast, has more than a snowball’s chance of success


time Out The Dave Brubeck Quartet In honour of the legendary jazz composer and pianist Dave Brubeck, who died on December 5, 2012, at the age of 91, anyone who loves music should listen, or re-listen, to The Dave Brubeck Quartet’s classic 1959 album Time Out. The first jazz album to sell a million copies and featuring the hit single Take Five, written by alto saxophonist Paul Desmond, Time Out’s experimentation with unique time signatures makes it one of the most influential jazz records ever made.


Open skies / january 2013

our man in

Express tour of Marrakech Hassan Hajjaj takes Olivia Gunning Bennani on a kaleidoscopic tour of his Marrakech – the workshops, the medina, the food and the people


’m in Marrakech waiting for a man with a moped. “Meet me at Café de France,” he instructs on the phone. “Next to the medina, on the Jemaa el Fna square. Everyone knows it.” I’m very excited that Hassan Hajjaj is my guide to the splendidly

red city of Marrakech. This multifaceted artist cannot put a foot wrong in, and out of, the art world. His recent project, My Rock Stars Volume I, exhibits photographic portraits of figures Hassan appreciates, wearing his iconic garments and encased in his own frames fabricated from recycled tyres or food and drink cans. Hassan’s images, installations and myriad objects, from furnishings to slippers, are a witty, pretty showcase of Morocco’s postcolonial, tradition-proud attitude. There are comparisons a-plenty to Warhol, but Hassan’s no copycat.


Open skies / january 2013

An unconventional tour Café de France, I quickly realise, is where everyone meets everyone else in Marrakech. It’s a tumblingoff-the-pavement crush of chairs and teapots. Hassan arrives. Waistlong dreadlocks, gentle, smilelined face, London accent. “Ready?” he asks. “Hop on, then.” And there she is. The inimitable vehicle, Louis Vuitton covered seat and heart-shaped pedals. The coolest moped I’ve ever seen. I clamber, rather than hop, on and Hassan fires us into motion. The clamorous warren that is Marrakech medina awaits. I’m clinging on.

work / A selection of Hassan’s work, which has seen him gain international recognition

“We’re going to see my favourite places,” warns Hassan. “Not the guidebook’s.” Hassan, exclusively Arabophone, was shipped from Morocco to the UK in his early teens. “You can imagine how it was landing in London and going to school there without any English,” Hassan says. Today, he spends around six months each year in Marrakech. “I do a lot of my work here where the craftsmen are,” he explains. “I have shows in the UK and overseas along with my shop in Shoreditch, named Larache after my Moroccan birth town.”

Meeting the masters Today, Hassan has some errands to run and we’re going to meet the maalems [master craftsman]. “They’re the real masters.” Hassan grins, narrowly avoiding a scruffy alley cat. “The only ones that can help me make my designs into objects.” We speed past endless bazaars, stopping

installations and venues. They litter his Marrakech residence and gallery space, Riad Yima, punctuating plastic floor mats with bursts of colour and pattern. After a few minutes of vigorous discussion, we’re back in the saddle, to meet a third master craftsman. “I’m hungry,” Hassan nods. “Let’s get some loubia.”

eventually at a foundouk in the Taking a tea break Bab Fteuh area. “This guy makes A couple of passages away, we’re my slippers – babouche. He’s a real climbing into Tiznit Restaurant. gem.” The maalem bends over an ancient sewing machine; leather “I like it here,” Hassan smiles. cuttings clutter his worktop. “Traditional Moroccan food, Hassan inspects the workmanship prepared properly.” He orders two punctiliously. The two men portions of loubia, explaining “It’s exchange a few remarks, tons of like baked beans – although the gesticulations and then, with a wave and Besalamaa, we’re off. We swing through alleys, veering and braking, Male grooming is one of the world’s coughing in the fastest growing industries. Here’s some city’s red dust. Next leading spas and barbers have to say stop is Sebarine where Hassan’s service – redefined. Close Male pouf man is based. @JohnAllans Grooming “This guy’s a proper Close Male Grooming maalam.” Hassan Pall Mall is Manchester’s first says. Hassan’s poufs Grooming truly bespoke male are an integral part London’s Pall Mall grooming experience, Grooming, a one-stop of the living room specialising in luxury scenes that he haircuts and traditional men’s grooming store offering cufflinks, recreates for both cutthroat shaves. men’s clothing, men’s @Closegrooming shoes, watches and Lounge Male male grooming.



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BLue Hour / Two locals sip tea in the courtyard of Tiznit Restaurant


Open skies / january 2013

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ConTroLLed CHAos / The markets scattered throughout Marrakech contain everything from spices to lamps, fresh fish to sculptures

beans are fatter and the tomato sauce might have a kick.” The place is dinky, homely, peopleworn. “I feel like we’re in someone’s living room,” I whisper. “Probably are,” Hassan laughs. “The medina’s basically a collection of houses. A family would have lived here once upon a time.” gardens. It’s an elegant boutique, Post-prandial tea – an a calm contrast to the chaos of obligatory ritual – is taken at Café the medina. The space is full of des Epices. Everyone smiles when bewitching creations from a flurry we walk in. “This is my local,” of Moroccan designers – Hassan’s Hassan says, minty vapour rising own pieces are quite prominent from his glass. “I’ve been friends – “They showcase work from with them for years.” Moroccan creators,” he says. Marrakech’s medina is organised “We’re all working at keeping by activity. If you make carpets, Moroccan creativity going.” you’re in the carpet quarter, if return to the medina spices are your thing, there’s only We sail past Hassan’s favourite one place to keep shop. Right now, hammam – Bediat in the Rahba we’re heading towards Hassan’s Lakdima quarter. lamp maker in “I’m in there the metalwork Jemaa el Fna at least once a area. There are square is week,” he says. fountaining sparks “Love getting and a vociferous crimson at a Moroccan clanging of sunset and we clean.” Hassan’s brass and iron. a great driver, Hassan’s lanterns, are at stand 14, but Marrakech encrusted with which serves means a lot of North African swerving and images that can be the city’s best stop starting and described only as Fish and chips I’m ready to get iconographic, sit off. At long last I in the nooks and can peep through crannies of Riad the doors of Riad Yima. It’s time for Yima. Hassan an out-of-medina renovated this traditional building moment, so we beep and bump himself. “It took years,” he says. “I our way through Marrakech’s wider boulevards, flanked by heavy did it bit by bit when I had money and time.” It’s been visited by cars and horse-drawn carriages. many household names. Last year’s We arrive at 33 Rue Majorelle, Marrakech Biennale, organised by neighbouring Yves Saint Laurent’s


Open skies / january 2013

Vanessa Branson, brought swarms to Morocco’s red city. Riad Yima received endless guests, from Ruby Wax to a Tate Gallery team. Hassan has people to talk to and things to do, so he sits me on the roof of Riad Yima. Yet more tea is served, on one of Hassan’s North African kitschy tables, a recycled stop sign – in Arabic script, naturally. From a flowery cushion atop a pile of coke crates, I doze in Marrakech’s crazy sensory chaos. We’re back where we started and hungry again. It’s sunset. Jemaa el Fna square is a beautiful crimson, and Café de France is still full. A stream of carts have arrived, plumes of steam lifting out with a promising stink of oil and spice. Stand number 14 is our destination. “Here you get the best fish and chips in Marrakech,” Hassan grins as we hop onto stools. Laid out before us is the most incredible spread. Sole fillets and handcut chips are joined by grilled peppers, genuine tomato sauce – tomatoes are visible – and aubergine caviar. So what’s next? “I’ll be in Marseille for a new museum opening, part of the 2013 European City of Culture event. I’ve got a solo show with Rose Issa in London, and should be part of a couple of exhibitions in the US.” And is there to be a My Rock Stars Volume II? “Definitely. I’m heading towards Casablanca for parts of it. It’s not just about artists, but about people I know, people I like. My own rock stars, you know? And then there’s my next project I’m planning. Work in progress, really” It’s a My Rock Stars film project. Seven-minute sequences of My Rock Stars talking as if they’re selling something, and, as you listen, the words entwine together.” He stops, takes a breath and a chip. “This is street food just as I like it,” Hassan beams. I couldn’t agree more.

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Known as the party capital of Europe, Madrid has a level of vibrancy and energy unparalleled in other cities, and this is largely because of the character of its people. Visitors will be left wondering when these crazy Madrileños find time to sleep, or go to work. Indeed, no matter what night of the week, you’ll find bars and restaurants bursting with people well into the early hours. Madrid is the highest, sunniest and greenest capital in Europe and, according to its natives, is the closest place you’ll get to heaven – ‘Desde Madrid al Cielo’ goes the saying.





01. Hotel Adler 02. Hotel Orfila 03. ME Melia 04. Villa Magna

05. Balzac 06. Santceloni 07. El Jardín Secreto 08. Casa Lucio

09. Loft 39 10. Club Musée 11. Bar Cock 12. Belvedere Lounge

13. Reina Sofia 14. Museo del Prado 15. Museo Thyssen Bornemisza 16. Galería Moriarty



HOTEls 01 Hotel adler In the heart of Salamanca close to designer shops and the Retiro Park, the 45 rooms maintain a classic modernity, while the restaurant serves first-class traditional Spanish meat and seafood, and there’s a cosy bar for evening drinks. 02 Hotel orfila This 19th-century palace, on a leafy street in the Chamberí district, was converted to the Hotel Orfila in the 1990s, but still retains palatial ambitions. Having welcomed a plethora of VIPs, each of the rooms is different and exquisitely decorated and guests are welcomed with a bottle of cava. 03 Me Melia One of the more glamorous hotels in Madrid, the Melia – formerly the ‘bullfighter’s hotel’ – is a modern, luxury offering with dark hardwood floors, rich linen sheets and state-of-the-art technology, such as iPod docks, as well as a restaurant and rooftop bar. 04 Villa Magna This hotel oozes taste: all the rooms are scented with a bespoke perfume and boast Magic Mirror televisions, while one of the two in-house restaurants is run by Michelinstarred chef Eneko Atxa.

MadRId / The Spanish capital is one of Europe’s liveliest, largely due to the passion of its people

rEsTauraNTs 05 Balzac Balzac is home to one of Madrid’s rising young culinary stars: Chef Andres Madrigal with his fusion of modern Spanish cooking and flavours of Provence. Some of the dishes are particularly ‘out there,’ like the wasabi ice cream, but most are more traditionally based with a strong emphasis on fish, wild game and seasonal vegetables, served in a simple, clean environment. 06 Santceloni Previously run by the late Santi Santamaria, this





acclaimed restaurant’s head chef is Michelin star-holder Oscar Velasco. The best way to experience his genius is to opt for the 10-course Menu Gastronomique, accompanied by one of the new generation Catalan wines that feature on the rather impressive wine list. 07 el Jardín Secreto Slightly eccentric and very eclectic, the ‘Secret Garden’ opens its wooden double-doors onto the street to create a romantic nocturnal terrace complete with candle-lit tables for two. The exotic, everchanging menu can include smoked Swiss reindeer, Breton flower salads or rose-flavoured soups, as well as a selection of pastries and homebaked cakes. 08 Casa Lucio Hollywood film stars, visiting dignitaries and the King of Spain himself all head to Casa Lucio for renowned huevos estrellados (‘smashed eggs’) and suckling pig with chips in rustic surroundings with low ceilings, exposed beams and lead-light windows. Dress code is jacket and tie, though more casual is still acceptable.

GallErIEs 13 Reina Sofia One of the largest art galleries in Madrid, the Centro de Arte Reina Sofia is a huge exhibition space housing contemporary Spanish art – 20th-century works from the Prado, and the Miró and Picasso legacies, including the famous Guernica. The white walls and high ceilings are ideal for these modern, large-scale works.

bars / clubs 09 Loft 39 This lounge bar with adjoining restaurant sports rather ornate décor complete with stained glass windows and cosy sofas. Everything stocked behind the bar smacks of quality, from the fresh fruit that goes into the cocktails to the wide range of reserve spirits. The crowd ranges in age and fashion styles, but all have heavy pocketbooks. 10 Club Musée Fusing nightclub with art gallery, Musée was designed by Madridbased design studio Parolio & Euphoria Lab and provides a truly dramatic dance floor backdrop of black glass and mirrors, sculptural furniture and artworks. Explosions of colour and light from all sides complement house music spun by top DJs. 11 Bar Cock Bar Cock is worth checking out as one of the original cocktail bars in Madrid. Ornate furnishing

MuSeo deL PRado / Easily one of Europe’s best art galleries, the del Prado is a treasure trove of Spanish art

belies the bar’s long history, and the DJ roster is surprising, with somewhat incongruous electro sessions. The prices are high, but this is, after all, a Madrid institution. 12 Belvedere Lounge From the team behind one of Madrid’s top restaurants – Ølsen – comes one of the city’s coolest lounge bars. Located in the basement of the eatery, the Belvedere Lounge is an intimate cocktail bar, which specialises in a variety of vodka drinks.


Open skies / january 2013

14 Museo del Prado Housing one of the world’s oldest and most important collections spanning two decades and originally amassed by Spanish royals, you could easily spend several days in the Museo del Prado. Don’t miss the works of Spanish artists Goya (especially his Black paintings), Velázquez and El Greco. A 2007 extension was designed by architect Rafael Moneo. 15 Museo Thyssen Bornemisza One of the best of Madrid’s private art galleries, the collection was assembled by Baron ThyssenBornemisza, who died in April 2002. Some 1,000 pieces spanning the 14th to the 20th centuries by European artists, such as Degas, Manet, Cézanne, Van Gogh, Matisse and Picasso, are displayed in a neo-classical palace. 16 Galería Moriarty Galería Moriarty is one of the top commercial galleries in Madrid, exhibiting works by both Spanish and international artists, with a focus on avant-garde artists like Cristina Barrera and Julio Jara. The gallery also hosts readings and audio-visual shows.


A scenic 35-minute ride on a seaplane past unbelievable atoll formations takes you to a pocket of paradise nestled within the azure blue waters of Baa Atoll UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. A pearl of beauty of 118 villas in 6 different categories all tastefully decorated in luxurious comfort in a truly traditional Maldivian setting. All villas offers you utmost privacy and sweeping vistas of clear blue skies and glistening white sandy beaches, just a step away from the inviting pleasures of the aquamarine waters and a vibrant and preserved coral reef, promising you the ultimate in luxurious solitude and tranquility. The resort also boasts of a vast array of recreational facilities, an incredible over water SPA, a fitness centre, Water sports, swimming pool, tennis, beach volley, squash, excursions and an intriguing Diving centre that will give you the chance to experience Hanifaru Bay, one of the most famous marine reserve in the world.

Kihaad Maldives…simply gorgeous!


Born to be wild

how two emirati brothers followed their hearts and created wild peeta, one of the most original local brands in the uae


s he took a final look in the mirror to adjust his ghutra before heading to another day in the office, Mohamed Parham al Awadhi’s heart sank. At 34, he was in a successful and lucrative role as the regional head of duty-free sales for Beiersdorf, which owns brands including Nivea and Eucerin, but he was miserable.

words by tahira Yaqoob / images by farooq salik

Deeply entrenched in the corporate grind, he longed to do something which appealed to his creativity rather than sapping his passion on a daily basis. So with little more than a fond childhood memory of gorging on snacks from street corners in Dubai, he quit and with his younger brother Peyman, launched Wild Peeta, the UAE’s first gourmet shawarma outlet. The Emirati brothers have just passed their three-year anniversary


Open skies / january 2013

with a single mission in mind – to serve food that represents the UAE while being healthy and nutritious. “We first registered the Wild Peeta website 10 years ago and had been talking about it for a long time,” says Mohamed, now 38. “We looked around at what was offered in the UAE and while there were lots of imported franchises, fast food with a local identity simply did not exist. “The shawarma was an obvious choice. Why couldn’t we take something that is loved by everyone and make it more appealing and nutritious while tapping into the local economy?”

It was the memory of wolfing Mohamed left Beiersdorf down the snack as teenagers that while Peyman, 36, who first inspired the brothers, two previously worked for Pepsi and of five siblings (their brother was then head of marketing at the Marwan, 31, is Dubai’s DJ Bliss.) Roads and Transport Authority, Their father, Younes Parham al kept his job while rolling up his Awadhi, was a travelling salesman, sleeves in his spare time to work manufacturing and distributing behind the counter. stuffed toy camels, and as children, At their first outlet in Dubai Mohamed and Peyman would work Healthcare City, both brothers got for him every summer in his shop in stuck into assembling and serving Dubai’s old souk. their shawarmas On the way to with a difference the store for the often at the cost of afternoon shift, their crisp white they would pass a kandouras. shack called King While what wild peeta of Shawarmas shawarmas, with produces is, – and the cheap their shavings snack was the in essence, of meat from a highlight of their skewer slathered salads on a half-hour walk in sauce and platter of every day. sandwiched in It sowed the bread, share the bread, with the seed for an idea same ranking on herbs sourced which took hold the gourmet scale more than two as late-night locally decades later. But kebabs, burgers it was years before and the pizza you the brothers finally took the leap inevitably regret the next morning, and found the funding to turn their Wild Peeta aims to serve up a dish brainchild into a flourishing business. with more thought. Mohamed says: “My brother Their shawarmas are packed and I were both unsatisfied in with greens while the ratio of repetitive jobs. We felt we were not protein to carbohydrates has been making any real contribution and tweaked to be healthier. They are, in there was no personal fulfilment. essence, salads on a platter of bread. “When you are in a well-paid While the meat can be shipped job though, you put your dreams in from as far afield as Brazil, the on the back burner. vegetables and herbs are sourced “You only really explore doing from the UAE or the Middle East if something for yourself when you they cannot be found in the country. get to the point in life where you Courgettes, cabbage, spinach, think: ‘What have I achieved?’ tomatoes and parsley are all grown That made us take the next step.” locally while the sautéed pumpkin in The pair finally got the impetus the vegan wrap is found regionally. to launch Wild Peeta in October Mohamed and Peyman 2009 after securing a loan, to be experimented with sauces and paid back over five years with road-tested them on customers favourable interest rates, from the before coming up with their range government’s Mohammed Bin of seven toppings reflecting their Rashid Establishment for Small and travels around the world, from Medium Businesses. They ploughed the Indian makhani sauce to in Dh400,000 of their own savings the Italian-inspired tomato and and the restaurant was born. herbs and the Emirati-influenced


Open skies / january 2013

MAkING A SHAWARMA How to make the perfect shawarma in four (relatively) easy steps 1) place on piece of flat bread on the bottom corner of some greaseproof paper and spread a serving of sauce across it. 2) carve a handful of chicken and place it on top of the sauce in the centre of the bread. 3) add your vegetables - anything from salad leaves, peppers, jalapenos and olives, as well as pepper, olive oil and chilli sauce. 4) now for the difficult part – wrapping the shawarma. pinch the two edges of the bread together between thumb and forefinger, roll the bread, wrapping it in the paper, fold in one end, finish wrapping and twist the top.

khaleeji saloona, a pureed version of a traditional homemade chickpea and meat stew. Even the ketchup is not of the squeezy-bottle variety but is a blend of unsweetened beetroot puree and pomegranate, which Mohamed says has been a hit with their younger customers. “Every one of our recipes started out differently,” he says. “We regularly ask our customers to come in and try our shawarmas for free and tell us what they think because we want to improve what we are doing. People running businesses forget that connection with their customers.” At their current outlet near the World Trade Centre metro stop, where they relocated 18 months ago, the brothers have a Twitter wall where customers can see their tweets on a large screen. The restaurant, with its Arab pop art commissioned from Emirati artists, diner setting and dishes such as Livin’ La Peeta Loca, has a young feel and draws a crowd of well-heeled, hip Emiratis and expatriates. But Mohamed says their philosophy of ‘local, social, fresh’ and ‘no junk promise’ is as much of a pull for families and mothers who do not want their children to eat junk food. He is passionate when it comes to educating customers on food and nutrition so Wild Peeta’s shawarmas, quesadillas and platters include a variety of vegetarian and vegan dishes. “The fast food we are being fed through most companies is causing diabetes, high cholesterol and heart problems. It is killing us,” says Mohamed. “Everything is genetically modified and pumped full of preservatives. Our responsibility at Wild Peeta goes beyond the cash till.” It has not been an easy ride, however, with their first base in Healthcare City flooding two

LocaL, sociaL, fresh / the wild peeta mantra on a blackboard at their restaurant beside dubai world trade centre

Economic Forum in Dubai last months after opening when November spurned a lavish gala a water pipe burst and some dinner to queue expensive at their stand in mistakes, such the fast the same venue as investing in a for a shawarma bread oven which food we are to go. proved redundant being fed is “We are the (they now order killing us. our happiest we their bread from have ever been,” a local supplier responsibility he says. “Both to save time and at wild peeta Peyman and costs). I worked for They have goes beyond multinational scaled down the cash till companies and their ambitions managed millionto open across dollar budgets, the Middle East which gave us a and are focused great insight into on a single base how global brands for now, with operate – but nothing prepares you a second restaurant due to open for running a small business. in Media City by 2015. They “All the greatest brands in the also operate pop-up stands at world started with a passion and exhibitions and every Saturday went through a period of failure in Al Quoz alongside the Ripe but they persisted. farmers’ market. “2012 was a difficult year but we Mohamed says he knew Wild have planted a seed and in a few Peeta was destined to be a success years it will bear fruit.” when delegates at the World


Open skies / january 2013

Photo: Mathew GriMM


201 Mission Street / San Francisco the floor of an office tower on Mission Street is lit up in the early morning during construction. Mission Street is the main north-south thoroughfare in the city. the street and the Mission District through which it runs were named after the Spanish Mission Dolores. the street is the city’s longest, and one of its oldest.


Open skies / january 2013


Rogue tRadeR

An industry insider with 20 years’ experience as a trader working in London, New York and Dubai, lifts the lid on the financial sector’s highs and lows


started working in the City Of London in 1995, when banks pretty much ran themselves. London is always going to be the financial centre of the world, because it can trade from Asia all the way

around to the US due to the time zone, but this was a buoyant time. People were making a lot of money, there were a lot of IPOs (Initial Public Offerings), a lot of new issues, a lot of takeovers, so it didn’t really matter what sector you were in, people were being headhunted on huge packages. I changed banks in London three times in the space of five years and doubled whatever I was on every time I moved. I had


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my first Ferrari when I was 24, my second when I was 25. I then spent eight years working in New York where it was a lot more aggressive. I had a beach house in the Hamptons; that was pretty standard for guys in the business. In those days the lifestyles were very flash. It was as competitive outside of the office as it was on the trading floor. People wanted to show that they were earning more

money than other people. On a typical Friday a London trader might finish work, jump on a private jet, fly to a chalet in Switzerland, go out and spend $20,000 in a club at the ski resort and return on a private jet for Monday to go back to work. In New York traders would treat customers to $4,000 floor seats at a basketball game, and then go out and spend $20,000 in a nightclub. I’ve seen people spend $50,000 on a huge bottle of champagne just to show how much money they had. Back in the boom times it was exactly like you see in the movies: lots of noise, people shouting buy and sell orders into phones. If you step onto a trading floor now, you can seee that a lot of traders have been sacked so much of it is automated. It would be very quiet. Banks have had their wings clipped, so they can’t take as much risk. Regulation has killed the trading business and brought the industry to it knees. People in the financial industries, especially banks, are looking over their shoulders and worried about keeping their jobs. You can see the headlines every month – people are being sacked left, right and centre. In the UK, as soon as somebody makes a wrong move in the banking business it becomes front-page news. If a banker spends £10,000 going out for dinner and the press latch hold of it he will be sacked from his job because there’s so much political heat on the banks to curb that kind of behaviour. Fifteen years ago you could spend $5,000 on taking a client out to dinner and it wouldn’t be an issue whatsoever. Rules and regulations have been brought into place and you can’t do that. You need to get pre-approvals, there will be a maximum spend and it will probably be $100. If you were a good trader back in the late 1990s through to 2008, you could easily be making seven figures.

In the real good times you could be making two, three, four million dollars a year, easily. Now you would be lucky to be making $400,000 or $500,000. It’s a big difference. If you were a graduate back in the mid-1990s and you wanted to make everywhere. But that’s part and parmoney, you knew this was the procel of this business. If you make a lot fession to go into. Now, most of those of money and spend it and you’re out graduates are going into venture of a job and calling around people capital or the internet start-ups. begging to get back in the business, The investment banks have do I feel sorry for you? seen a talent drain. All the good Absolutely not. guys have started up their own We have at least five years hedge funds or they’ve gone into before we see anything like the private wealth management or good times coming back, and they’ve gone to set up their own because the industry has changed commodities business. The cream so significantly and has become so of the crop, those traders who regulated, they’re never going to go were earning the big money in the back to the way they were in terms mid-1990s up to 2008 don’t work of late 1990s to 2008 with the exin investment banking anymore. cessive bonuses and spending. The politicians should have The problem is that you have been involved way before the politicians trying to dictate the financial crisis in 2008, especially financial markets but by their very in the US; they’re playing catch up. nature markets should take care of They should have been regulating themselves. They have their own the mortgage market in the States agenda. They do what is currently from the late 1990s all the way fashionable. It doesn’t really help through to 2008. They didn’t and it the man on the street when the fincaused the bubble that has brought ancial services sector is so overly everyone down. regulated, because then you have The flash guys made it, they a stale business where people’s spent it and a lot of them have been pensions are not growing in the driven out of the manner that business in the they should. last four years. When you’re I’ve seen Those guys have in this business, people spend had to sell houses it’s very hard to and have been leave it. Most $50,000 on a out of a job for guys who are huge bottle of three years. When successful will champagne just work 14-hour their sectors were hot – the days, six, someto show how CDS markets, the times seven, days much money fixed markets, the a week; it’s very mortgage-backed hard to give up. they had securities markets You get addicted – these guys were to working in making five or ten this business million dollars a and making year. Now they money. It’s like a are on zero. In the Hamptons three challenge to make money. To say years ago you couldn’t drive down a enough is enough and walk away street without seeing for sale signs with your chips is very hard.


Open skies / january 2013


The Little Museum of Dublin


Words by Andrew Birbeck / Images by Claire Duggan

estled on St Stephen’s Green in the heart of Georgian Dublin is The Little Museum of Dublin. The brainchild of museum director Trevor White and curator Simon O’Connor, the

museum was set up to tell the story of Dublin in the 20th century. During the now much maligned boom years the chances of such a concept getting off the ground would have been slim. However, with austerity biting hard and a return for Dubliners to a more


Open skies / january 2013

traditional capital city, The Little Museum has captured the imagination of both locals and visitors alike. The personal nature of the enterprise strikes you as soon as you enter. Indeed a visit is akin to stepping into someone’s home. The museum

HERITAGE / A selection of the everday objects on display at The Little Museum in the centre of the Irish capital

could be said to have come about through accident rather then design. Trevor White’s chance meeting with a tourist sparked the flame that would ignite the idea. Originally his concept was for a tourist greeting service. Volunteers would buy visitors either a pint

or a cup of tea and give them an introduction to the city. As Simon O’Connor says, “It’s what we Dubliners do all the time anyway. We wanted to find a way to tell the world about Irish hospitality and it turned into all this,” Simon adds proudly while simultaneously


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juggling emails, taking phone calls and conducting an interview. The buzz in the building is palpable. From occupying just one floor of the magnificent house 18 months ago all four floors are now utilised including a newly opened café in the basement. Despite the

tough economic times, The Little Museum is a success. According to Simon, ‘timing has been a huge factor. Not only is there an appetite for the project but also a building like this wouldn’t have been available during the days

of the Celtic Tiger.’ At that time property changed hands with more speed than a high-octane game of Monopoly. In 2003 the Dublin Civic Museum on nearby South William Street closed “with barely a whimper.” Dublin was occupied with other matters and was left as one of the few European capitals without such an amenity. Across the Continent and in the UK, however, “house museums were very much in vogue.” Trevor and Simon’s vision was to capture the atmospheric intimate nature of these establishments. In the early part of 2011 a public appeal was launched for personal artefacts and items of interest relating to 20th century Dublin. The massive response and subsequent deluge of donations over a five-month period took them pleasantly by surprise. Items on show range from the lectern used by John F. Kennedy in his 1963 address to the Irish


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Parliament to humble Dublin Millennium milk bottles, which were produced in 1988 to mark the 1000th year of the capital. Not only did the volume and range of donations surprise, the demographic of indigenous visitors equally raised an eyebrow. A younger than expected age group took to the museum, especially those who had lived through the tough times of the 1980s. Simon argues that many of the items on show, including the current excellent photographic exhibition, “reflect the cyclical nature of Dublin’s recent history.” Through everyday objects there is a re-connection with a city that, until relatively recently, appeared lost beneath a frantic grab for wealth. Adds Simon: “We wanted to squeeze in the charm of the city, take a few risks, be controversial, ask questions that were difficult to answer, and above all make something that was small but good.”


Chef fergus henderson shares his favourite places to eat out in London


Breakfast Bar Italia on Frith Street. If there’s a better place in London to watch the world go by then I don’t know it. It’s marvellous for people watching, but more importantly the coffee is superb. I’d hate to recommend one coffee, as people have their favourites and I don’t want to change that, but you can bet the coffee here is stunning. They do a superb sausage roll too, have I mentioned that? Quite wonderful. Yes, Bar Italia, incredibly consistent, you know? And consistency is to be admired. And of course, if you’re visiting London, you’ll visit Soho. So go there. Tell them Fergus sent you. Actually don’t. They won’t have a clue what you’re on about.


22 Frith St, London, W1D 4RF. Tel: +44 (0) 20 74374520. 39 Queen Victoria St, London, EC4N 4SF. Tel: +44 (0) 207248 3062.

Lunch Get yourself to Sweetings in the City. It’s not far from the Bank Of England. It’s just the most wonderful fish restaurant. It used to be a fish shop, and you can tell by the lay out. It really shouldn’t work, but it does. It’s a work in chaos. It’s only open Monday to Friday for lunch and they don’t take reservations. They serve a wonderful pint of Black Velvet. Try the scampi and chips. I’m a creature of habit, so that’s my usual order, but I have had the smoked haddock and poached egg, and that’s wonderful too. I should really have that again. It’s an incredibly old place, Sweetings. They’ve been on that site since the late 1800s or something ridiculous.


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Dinner Ikeda on Brook Street in Mayfair. I’ll be honest, it doesn’t look wonderful inside. Blimey, it looks very basic, not cool at all, but you’re not there for the interiors, you’re there for perfect Japanese food. And all of it is great. What do I order? What don’t I order? The sushi and sashimi is great. They do yams brilliantly and the buckwheat noodles are a stand out. It’s fantastic, I mean it’s really fantastic. Pricey but worth it. Very traditional place. Family run. Delightful. 30 Brook St, Mayfair, London, W1K 5DJ. Tel: Tel: +44 (0) 2076292730. Fergus Henderson’s book Nose to Tail Eating is available now





the matrix

w Seoul is one of the most stylish hotels in the very stylish Korean capital. A spa, driving range and huge pool makes it easy to detox.

the maritime in the Manhattan’s Chelsea is the place to live it up in New York. The rooftop bar is a must.

Fasano, Rio de janiero upscale luxury in the heart of trendy Ipanema.

Enjoy natural bliss at the Sankara Hotel in the lush Japanese island of Yakushima. sankarahotel-spa. com/en


The Gheralta Lodge in northern Ethiopia mixes slow food, spectacular views and rock-hewn churches. gheraltalodgetigrai. com

Serenity in spades at Zighy Bay in Oman. sixsenseszighybay

Hacienda na Xamena is a chilled oasis in Ibiza.



FRom cHiLLed to cHic, ouR Guide to tHe BeSt januaRy GetawayS Zara Rise

We find out why the Spanish retailer Zara has grown into the biggest fashion retailer in the world page 68 64

Open skies / january 2013


How Zara has become the biggest fashion retailer in the world

Fit for a king Sir Ben Kingsley talks Oscars, Gandhi, and playing against type


Never eNdiNg Story 68

Open skies / january 2013

Zara, or more precisely, its parent company Inditex, is now the largest retailer in the world. So just how did a company from Spain’s windswept Atlantic coast grow so big, so fast? 69

Open skies / january 2013

By Suzy Hansen

GAlIcIA, on tHe AtlAntIc coASt of SpAIn, IS tHe HomelAnd of GenerAlISSImo frAncISco frAnco, But IS otHerwISe fAmouS for BeInG A plAce people try to leAve. For much of the 20th century, hundreds of thousands of gallegos, as they are called, emigrated to countries as far away as Argentina to escape Galicia’s rural poverty. Today, however, even as Spain teeters on the edge of economic catastrophe, the Galician city La Coruña has attracted notice as the hometown of Amancio Ortega Gaona, the world’s third-richest man — he displaced Warren Buffett this year on the Bloomberg billionaires index — and the founder of a wildly successful fashion company, Inditex, more commonly known by its oldest and biggest brand, Zara. Ortega has never given an interview, according to his communications department, nor does he attend award ceremonies or parties. He rarely allows his picture to be taken. Pablo Isla, who took over the company when the 76-year-old Ortega stepped down as chairman last year, rarely gives interviews or waves to the camera, either. In fact, the public face of Inditex is its soft-spoken communications director, Jesus Echevarría, who, as I discovered during a recent visit to the Inditex complex, is perhaps the only communications director on the planet who all but apologises whenever he must answer questions about Inditex’s runaway success. The company’s outward modesty reflects its surroundings. La Coruña is a quiet place, typically European in its humdrum perfection: tidy highways and compact cars, clean taxis, no need to worry about tipping. The week I visited in late July, the conservative na-

tional government was threatening to implement a new austerity plan, and unemployment among people under 30 in Spain hit 50 per cent, but the city seemed calm. Restaurants were busy, beaches packed. People dozed on La Coruña’s seaside boulders, while their dogs leapt in the water. The city is a little more than 300 miles from Madrid and 555 miles from Barcelona. It’s an odd location for an aggressive, global company like Inditex. The campus (located in the industrial area of Arteixo, next door to La Coruña) consists of corporate headquarters for the entire company, as well as headquarters for Zara and Zara Home, two of Inditex’s eight brands. There are also factories and a distribution centre where clothes are loaded

Inditex is a pioneer among fast fashion companies which imitate the latest fashions and speed their cheaper versions into stores: trendy and decently made, but inexpensive 70

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onto trucks to be sent around the world. The factories are directly across from the corporate offices. The main building, where I waited for my hosts, somewhat resembled a hospital waiting room, with rows of plain boxy black chairs and little else. Apart from a single poster of a fashion model, nothing adorned its white walls. No flowers, no words, no ads, no fashion magazines, no style. The setting felt appropriate for the age of austerity, even if Inditex is one company in Spain that is actually thriving. Inditex is a pioneer among “fast fashion” companies, which essentially imitate the latest fashions and speed their cheaper versions into stores. Every one of Inditex’s brands — Zara, Zara Home, Bershka, Massimo Dutti, Oysho, Stradivarius, Pull & Bear and Uterqüe — follow the Zara template: trendy and decently made but inexpensive products sold in beautiful, high-end-looking stores. Zara’s prices are similar to those of Gap: coats for $200, sweaters for $70, T-shirts for $30. Inditex now makes 840 million garments a year and has around 5,900 stores in 85 countries, though that number is always changing because Inditex has in recent years opened more than a store a day, or about 500 stores a year. Right now there are around 4,400 stores in Europe, and almost 2,000 in Spain alone. Inditex’s main rivals are way behind. Arcadia Group, which owns Topshop, among others, has about 3,000 stores worldwide; H&M, based in Sweden, has 2,500 (when you include its smaller lines of stores); and Mango, based in Spain, 2,400. In an Inditex conference room, Echevarría gave me a multimedia presentation about the company. The number of stores in different countries popped up on the screen — including 289 in China and 45 in the United States. Since the time of our meeting, in late July, Inditex

homeland / the complex in Arteixo, Spain, that houses Inditex headquarters and some Zara factories has reached 350 stores in China and opened another in the United States. The company’s march appears to be as inexorable as the passage of the seasons. But can Inditex survive its own expansion? “When we open a market, everyone asks, ‘How many stores will you open?’” he said. “Honestly, I don’t know. It depends on the customer and how big the demand is. We must have the dialogue with the customers and learn from them. It’s not us saying you must have this. It’s you saying it.” Inditex’s roots go back to 1963, when Ortega, the son of a railway worker, started a business making housecoats and robes in La Coruña. In 1975, he opened his own store in town. He called it Zorba, after the 1964 film Zorba the Greek. “I don’t think they were thinking of making history, just that it was a nice name,” Echevarría said. “But apparently there was a bar that was called the same, Zorba, like two blocks away, and the owner of the bar came and said, ‘This is going to confuse things to have two Zorbas.’ They had already made the moulds for the letters in the sign, so they

just rearranged them to see what they could find. They found Zara.” The holding company Inditex was created in 1985. Ortega wanted to maintain his own manufacturing business in La Coruña, so from the beginning his business model differed from the norm. A traditional ready-towear fashion company in the West sends the designs for its clothes to independent factories in countries like China and India, where the labour to make them is not expensive. These clothes are then shipped back and stocked in stores in spring and autumn, with smaller shipments throughout the year. But a brand at Inditex will make an autumn collection, for example, and then ship only three or four dresses or shirts or jackets in each style to a store. There’s very little leftover stock, few extra-smalls or mediums hiding in the back. But store managers can request more if there’s demand. They also monitor customers’ reactions, on the basis of what they buy and don’t buy, and what they say to a sales clerk: “I like this scooped collar” or “I hate zippers at the ankles.” Inditex says


Open skies / january 2013

its sales staff is trained to draw out these sorts of comments from their customers. Every day, store managers report this information to headquarters, where it is then transmitted to a vast team of in-house designers, who quickly develop new designs and send them to factories to be turned into clothes. More than half of Inditex’s manufacturing takes place either in the factories it owns or within proximity to company headquarters, which is to say in Europe or Northern Africa. Inditex owns factories in Spain and outsources production to factories in Portugal, Morocco and Turkey — considered costly labour markets, typically. The rest of its clothes are produced in China, Bangladesh, Vietnam and Brazil, among other countries. The trendiest items are made closest to home, however, so that the production process, from start to finish, takes only two to three weeks. Inditex’s higher labour costs are offset by greater flexibility — no extra inventory lying around — and on faster turnaround speed. That means that if Inditex stores in London, Tokyo and São Paulo all have customers responding enthusi-

astically to, let’s say, sequined cranberry-coloured hot pants, Inditex can deliver more of these, or a variation on hot pants, sequins or that cranberry colour, to stores within three weeks. The company tries to keep the stock fresh; one promise its stores make is that you will always be buying something nearly unique. Merchandise moves incredibly quickly, even by fast-fashion standards. All those thousands of Inditex stores receive deliveries of new clothes twice a week. In this way, says Masoud Golsorkhi, the editor of Tank, a London magazine about culture and fashion, Inditex has completely changed consumer behaviour. “When you went to Gucci or Chanel in October, you knew the chances were good that clothes would still be there in February,” he says. “With Zara, you know that if you don’t buy it, right then and there, within 11 days the entire stock will change. You buy it now or never. And because the prices are so low, you buy it now.” Inditex owes none of its success to advertising. That’s because Inditex doesn’t advertise. It hardly even has a marketing department, and it doesn’t engage in flashy campaigns, as its competitors do, teaming up with fashion designers like Stella McCartney, Karl Lagerfeld, Martin Margiela and Marni. Zara’s designers are completely anonymous; some would say this is because they are copiers rather than designers. The marketing Inditex does do is all about real estate. The company invests heavily in the beauty, historical appeal and location of its shops. “The high street is really divided according to brand value,” says Golsorkhi, who is also a consultant for fashion brands. “Prada wants to be next to Gucci, Gucci wants to be next to Prada. The retail strategy for luxury brands is to try to keep as far away from the likes of Zara. Zara’s strategy is to get as close to them as possible.”

In the past five years inditex’s overall sales have grown to 13.8 billion euros a year. The company now has 110,000 employees, and while the rest of spain suffers, it prospers For example, in Istanbul, where I live, Zara, Uterqüe and Massimo Dutti can all be found on Tesvikiye Caddesi, an upscale and heavily trafficked avenue. They are one street away from Cartier and Hermès and Chanel. But Inditex is even more ambitious than that when it comes to finding valuable real estate. In 2003, Inditex built a Zara in the San Antonio el Real, an 18th-century convent in Salamanca, and in a historic cinema in Elche (also in Spain). The company likes special buildings. Last

year, it paid $324 million to buy space at 666 Fifth Avenue in New York, according to the company, a building known for being the most expensive ever sold in Manhattan. “In New York, they did one page saying they were opening — in The New York Times,” Echevarría said. “But it’s not a campaign; it’s an announcement; it’s information. The company does not talk about itself. The idea |was that the client was to talk about the company. It was not to say how good it could be. The customer would say that if it was deserved.” In the past five years, Inditex’s overall sales have grown to 13.8 billion euros a year from 9.4 billion euros. Profit has risen to almost 2 billion euros a year. The company expanded to 110,000 employees in 2011, from around 80,000 in 2007. In short, while Spain has been suffering through real estate and debt crises (following the global financial crisis), Inditex has prospered. Echevarría said that is because the customer is always determining production — not the other way around. Every piece of clothing the company

above the fray / despite the economic meltdown in Europe, Inditex continues to post huge profits


Open skies / january 2013

boxing clever / automated packing at Inditex’s factory in Arteixo, Spain

makes has, in a way, been requested. A business model that is so closely attuned to the customer does not share the cycle of a financial crisis. Fast fashion has also become more hip in recent years; even luminaries such as Kate Middleton have been photographed wearing Zara. “It’s generally the way the retail market is going — it’s not just Zara,” says Isabel Cavill, a senior analyst with Planet Retail, a consulting firm based in London. “There’s a bit of cachet in picking up something that looks like £500 for £50.” If people compliment your nice dress, you can proudly boast that you got it for a steal. Increasingly, H&M and Mango have raced to keep up with Zara. But the Inditex effect is not con-

fined to cheap, fast fashion. It has forced — or inspired, depending on how you look at it — people to spend their money in a different manner. In Zara, every purchase is an impulse buy; there’s no longer any saving up for that gorgeous leather jacket in the window. You are buying clothes not because you love them, but because, at $50, those hot pants are as cheap as Sunday brunch for two — and likely to be gone in a matter of days. It’s a way of consumption that has conditioned buyers to expect this up-to-the-minute trendiness and variety in higher-end labels as well. “They broke up a century-old biannual cycle of fashion,” Golsorkhi says. “Now, pretty much half of the high-end fashion companies” —


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Prada and Louis Vuitton, for example — “make four to six collections instead of two each year. That’s absolutely because of Zara.” The Inditex brands exist in a dizzying fashion time frame, where the latest trend seems to be wilting on a woman a few hours after she buys into it. The public relations person who gave me the rest of my tour of the Inditex premises — and requested not to be named, presumably in accordance with Inditex’s modesty rules — wore sleek black trousers with zippered ankles, a loose yellow blouse and a black blazer with an upside-down V cut out of the back. She looked sharp and shiny as a penknife. I wore a dress that was at least six years old, which ba-

sically means I showed up for my fast-fashion tour in a poodle skirt. The Zara headquarters is a huge airplane-hangar-sized open space, with regional sales managers sitting at a line of desks running down the middle, designers on either side of them. The managers field calls from China or Chile to learn what’s selling, then they meet with the designers and decide whether there’s a trend. In this way, Inditex takes the fashion pulse of the world. “The manager will say, ‘My customers are asking for red trousers,’ and if it’s the same demand in Istanbul, New York and Tokyo, that means it’s a global trend, so they know to produce more red pants,” the PR person said. I remarked that it must be interesting to see what is fashionable in Turkey but not in New York and vice versa. I imagined that different nationalities still had different tastes, at least in terms of fashion. But I was wrong. “Actually, the customer is more or less the same in New York and Istanbul,” she said. “There are differences, like Brazilian girls like more brilliant colours, whereas in Paris they use more black. But in general when you find a fashion trend, it’s global.” Earlier, Echevarría told me that neighbourhoods share trends more than countries do. For example, the store on Fifth Avenue in Midtown New York “is more similar to the store in Ginza, Tokyo, which is an elegant area that’s also touristic,” he said. “And SoHo is closer to Shibuya, which is very trendy and young. Brooklyn now is a wildly trendy place to go, while Midtown — well, no New Yorker is actually shopping on Fifth Avenue now.” The buyers there are suburban tourists, he meant. I recalled how I returned to my hipsterish Istanbul neighbourhood after a trip to Brooklyn not long ago and discovered that the Turks were all also wearing those huge scarves wrapped around their necks eight

times. I was surprised by how fast a style travelled across the globe, because I don’t see many Turks reading fashion magazines. But it isn’t just magazines that tell us what to wear. People like Ortega do. Or, more accurately, we tell each other, through his Inditex stores and others like them. On my tour, I also visited the mock Zara and Zara Home stores that were set up inside the headquarters. The fall collection, about to be introduced around the world, sat in the store front. There were lots of studs in brassy gold, military colours, skulls,

To the luxury brands they are copycats, they are like mushrooms feeding off the main body of fashion. but the fashion companies also copy each other. In the end, no one is original white lace shirts and animal prints that, the spokeswoman said, “have been trendy since last season and will continue a little bit, but just until Christmas.” A trend can last half a year, but some are finished in a month. “They thought that animal prints would finish by summer, but it kept going,” she said. “In the beginning of this season we had fluorescent colours. It was a trend in April and May, and it was very successful and then that was it.” We stopped in at Zara Home, which the representative said operated just like the clothing stores. (Last month, the company introduced in the United States, as well as Massimo Dutti, a higher-end clothing brand.) I was dubious that people throw away


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and replenish dishes and rugs the way they do miniskirts, but she assured me they do, especially when it was trendy. (I noticed skull-patterned stuff again.) Then we went to Zara Kids. It occurred to me that the avalanche of inexpensive clothing would likely put an end to the custom of hand-me-down baby clothes. Why deal with someone else’s stains when you can buy new (and on-trend) for $25? “The trends for kids are the same for adults,” the spokeswoman said. I looked at a jacket. “So I guess these Chanel-looking boxy things are in style for everyone.” She nodded. “Skulls for kids, too, huh?” Inditex denies that it copies other designers. Yet in The New York Times last March, Alexandra Jacobs described a visit to the new Zara store on Fifth Avenue in New York, where she was reminded of Prada, Alexander Wang, Balmain and many other high-end brands. Christian Louboutin took Inditex to court for selling the company’s signature red-soled shoes but lost, mainly because Inditex takes care to change its designs just enough to evade copyright laws. “To the luxury brands, they are copycats, they are like mushrooms feeding off the main body of fashion,” Golsorkhi says. “I was of the same mind myself, but I have grown out of that because I realise that the fashion companies also copy each other. In the end, no one’s original.” H&M also delivers frequent shipments of new items and imitates the latest trends. But even H&M offers original collections by famous fashion designers. Inditex has discovered it doesn’t need to. “They have done process innovation very well,” says Nelson Fraiman, a professor at Columbia Business School who has studied the Inditex model. “Product innovation? No. But tell me one Chinese company that has done product

innovation very well. They are brilliant at process. I think you should give a cheer for process innovation.” Expansion, however, poses a threat to Zara’s process by putting stores far from the factories and logistics centre in Europe. Echevarría said the company very carefully selects the cities where it opens new stores. Remember the slide presentation showing only 45 stores in the United States compared with hundreds in other countries? There are reasons for that. Foreign brands have a long history of failing miserably there. “The United States is a graveyard of European retailers,” says José Luis Nueno, a professor of marketing at I.E.S.E. Business School in Madrid. “Everyone who has gone there has struggled. Laura Ashley has shut down and even Benetton is declining. The US is really complex because it’s about putting stores in shopping malls in the middle of nowhere. Fashionistas live on the East and West coasts. Then everyone else dresses in Gap and Walmart and T. J. Maxx. If you really wanted to cover the US, you would have to open 300 stores, and they would have to focus all their energy to make it work.” There’s also the delicate matter of sizing. “Would you expand in the United States?” Fraiman asks. “Zara to me is a European store for European style; it’s very fashion forward. And what is the problem in America? They don’t fit in the clothes. So why do it? Having to make larger sizes makes production so much more complex.” Expanding in China, however, will make production more complex and also require heavy investment. The company plans to open more than 400 stores there this year. “Even opening three stores a week is very aggressive,” Fraiman says. “Their factories in La Coruña have a finite capacity to respond quickly. You open more and more stores, and you don’t have the flexibility

The United states is a graveyard of European retailers. Everyone who has gone there has struggled. If you really want to cover the us, you have to open 300 stores of the last-minute response. Once they have a big thrust in China, then what happens is that they will have to take the whole model” — the processing of customer reactions, the quick-turnaround design teams, the logistics platform — “and replicate it in China.” But the bigger Inditex gets, he says, the more it will lose control over quality and efficiency. Still, Asia remains central to Inditex’s plans, and the prospect of more than a billion Chinese consuming clothes at the fast-fashion clip worries some critics of the industry model. According to Elizabeth Cline, the author of Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion, Americans buy 20 billion garments a year, an average of 64 garments a person. When the Chinese are consuming at the same rate, that’s more than 80 billion garments a year. Golsorkhi says that fast fashion hasn’t changed the amount of labour needed to make clothes or the waste created by their production. Your new fluorescent miniskirt might only cost $40, but Bangladeshi workers still work for low pay in poor conditions to make it. Inditex says it works with unions and other organisations “to have the most respectful supply chain” and audits all of its partners every year, but like most major fashion companies that outsource the manufacturing of their clothes, it has received its share of complaints about factory conditions.


Open skies / january 2013

“The reality is: a T-shirt is a T-shirt is a T-shirt,” Golsorkhi says. “It costs the planet the same thing whether you have paid £200 for it or £1 for it. It does the same amount of damage. A T-shirt is equivalent to 700 gallons of water, gallons of chemical waste, so much human labour. But it used to be that we could do with three T-shirts a year. Now we need 30. Sometimes it’s actually cheaper to throw away clothes than to wash them. That has got to be wrong.” It also may not be good for business in the long run. “Eventually, there aren’t going to be resources to sustain fast fashion, so to me it seems to be a very vulnerable business model,” says Alex McIntosh, the business and research manager at the London College of Fashion’s Centre for Sustainable Fashion. “Production costs will also get more expensive, and they won’t be able to keep this up. Value-based companies don’t have margins to absorb that additional cost. And then they will need to convince customers to spend more for clothes again.” At the end of my tour, I went to one of the Inditex factories. There were about 100 workers, I was told; huge machines do much of the work. Hundreds of bright red three-quarter-length coats were hanging throughout the building, almost ready to be shipped. A line of women stood at ironing boards, smoothing out the wool-blend, looking for defects and, the spokeswoman told me with emphasis, attaching security tags. Inditex had discovered that if that task was left to the employees in the stores, it would take an extra few intolerable hours to get that trendy red coat from Galicia into your closet.

Suzy Hansen is an American journalist based in Istanbul

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With four Academy Award nominations, one Oscar, many deďŹ nitive roles under his belt and 50 years of success (so far), Ben Kingsley is one of the world’s most respected actors. George Phree discovers that sir Ben certainly knows how to put on a performance



Sir Ben has more than four decades of film roles under his belt. We choose the most iconic


ir Ben Kingsley is Mohandas Gandhi. Sir Ben Kingsley is Meyer Lansky. He is Itzhak Stern. He is Don Logan. He is arguably one of our greatest actors. He is the compact, wiry man in the wellcut light sea green suit and the crisp, open-necked white shirt perched commandingly on the edge of a big sofa in an anteroom at the Armani Hotel Dubai, in front of a screen advertising the popular whisky brand that he is an ambassador for; it is in this capacity that Sir Ben is in the Middle East. On the coffee table in front of him is a tray of chocolates – untouched. In his left hand is a glass of water – more of a prop than a thirst-quencher. Milling purposefully around the room’s periphery are numerous whispering flunkies, reps for the whisky brand, eager that their employee doesn’t waste too much time on the press, and public relations gofers, and one man – nothing to do with any of the other assembled media – crouched down pointing a Canon EOS 7D camera, set to record, straight at the couch. More on him later. Ushered into this uncomfortable and slightly surreal environment, I am led towards the couch, from which Sir Ben rises to his feet and, a warm smile on his face, the shaved scalp, the Roman nose and the well-groomed goatee all present and correct, moves to shake my hand. I’m pretty sure the PR introduces him as Ben, but I’m not sure, and aware of his alleged demand that he be addressed at all times as Sir Ben, I just shake his hand and introduce myself. I wouldn’t want to anger the man who played the delightfully vicious Don Logan in Sexy Beast, convincing the world that he could intimidate Ray Winstone, and Sir Ben looks like he could handle himself in a scrap.

Krishna Pandit Bhanji – Kingsley’s given name – was born in Yorkshire in 1943 to Anna and Rahimtulla Bhanji, a doctor of Gujarati Indian descent, and grew up in Salford, Manchester. In a 2010 interview with Britain’s Daily Mail Kingsley described both his parents as “distant” and his father as a “terrifying drinker,” and he says that his childhood was “a real struggle.” Sir Ben is more at ease when discussing his craft. I ask him if he treats a press interview like a performance, and he is unapologetic. “It’s an exercise,” he admits. “It’s an exercise in conveying to your group, trying to convey, what I do for a living and how much I love it and how much I’m trying to connect with them [the public].” I’m keen to move on quickly to major achievements like Gandhi, but first I ask what inspired him to become an actor. “One of the things that took me out of the struggle was the local cinema,” he says, leaning forward until the end of that imposing nose is less than a foot from my own, eyes fixed on mine, as if he’s eager to show he’s giving me his full attention – for the short time that we have. It is a consummate performance – a first-rate portrayal of an avuncular veteran actor enthusiastic to share his story. He recounts a story about a childhood visit to see the 1951 film Never Take No For An Answer, directed by Maurice Cloche and Ralph Smart; he attributes it to Havelock Ellis, who was in fact a physician and psychologist – a strange error considering the fact he has told this story to the press many times before. “I was very little, and the boy in the film, the star of the film, was an orphan, a little Italian boy, who during World War II had lost his family, and all he had was this wonderful creature that he worshipped and worked with, which was a donkey,” he says, a genuine warmth in his voice. “I looked very like him, and was greeted when I left the cinema as the boy; they thought I was the little star, which was, in my childhood context, quite thrilling.” The story itself sounds like a scene from a film, but overstated or not, the event –


Open skies / january 2013


MAHATMA GANDHI / Gandhi (1982) Sir Ben Kingsley describes David Attenborough’s 1982 epic Gandhi as “the golden door through which I entered the film industry”, and so it was. The film depicts Gandhi’s life from his involvement in the nonviolent protest movement for Indian rights in South Africa in the 1880s to the mass public funeral that followed his assassination in 1948. It was nominated for 11 Academy Awards, and won eight, including gongs for Best Film and Best Actor for Kingsley’s portrayal of the pacifist protest leader who brought about Indian independence from Britain in 1947. For many movie fans, Kingsley will always be the skinny, bald-headed man with round spectacles, walrus moustache and offthe-shoulder loin cloth.

All of us have in us Myra Hindley and Mother Teresa Of Calcutta: all of us have within us Adolf Hitler and Mahatma Gandhi

IcoNIc / Kingsley in the role that made his career, the 1982 film Gandhi, alongside Martin Sheen

specifically the audience’s reaction – was clearly very important to the young Krishna Bhanji. “A little seed was sowed then, and I imagined for a few weeks after seeing the movie that I was in a movie, that I was the star of my own little film,” he says. “It was a little bit like some children who are very lonely have an invisible friend; my invisible friend was, erm…” Sir Ben is no longer focusing on me so intently. “My invisible friend was this boy in the film,” he adds hurriedly, before turning his attention to the interloper with the Canon EOS 7D. “Sorry to interrupt, but what’s that?” he asks, pointing at the camera. “It’s a camera,” mutters the cameraman. “I know it’s a camera, but are you videoing this conversation?” asks Sir Ben. “Yes,” mumbles the cameraman. “Oh, I see, it would have been nice if you’d told us” says Sir Ben,

trying to cover his bemusement with that winning smile. There are a few moments of embarrassed and panicked babble from those in the room, as it becomes clear no one has any idea who this photographer is. “He snuck in?” Sir Ben asks nobody in particular. “Wow. Amazing,” he adds, before returning his attention to the interview. I suggest that most children suddenly forced to deal with the attention of an entire theatre of cinemagoers would scarper from the auditorium as swiftly as possible. He must have been a born star (“I reacted quite joyfully”), but he baulks at the idea that the event gave him a hankering for fame. “Not at all, not at all, not at all, not at all,” he says, shaking that famous bald head. “It was a simple acknowledgement of me as a little human being. Acknowledgement. Nothing to do with applause, or fame, or narciss-


Open skies / january 2013

That was the gesture of deep rage and indignation that you could possibly do this to another human being – that informed the whole of my performance as Gandhi

ism or anything grandiose, it was just – there you are. That’s all it was.” But why was it so important for the youn Krishna Bhanji to be acknowledged by strangers? “If you’re not acknowledged [as a child], it’s quite difficult to leave your thumbprint on the world, so there are various issues that I’ve battled with, but then again, erm, without those issues, would my voice as a storyteller be that assertive? I’m not sure. I’m not sure,” he says, visibly a little awkward. Krishna Bhanji also, like most children, enjoyed dressing up, but hinting again at his childhood struggle, Sir Ben adds, “I’m sure it was quite normal, but for me, in my little corner, it was quite extraordinary.” His love of film, rather than a simple desire to be acknowledged, was fostered at Manchester Gram-

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DoN LoGAN / Sexy Beast (2000) The role Kingsley himself admits people associate most with him is about as far away from his famous portrayal of Gandhi as it is possible to go, but Kingsley tapped into both characters’ anger to produce what are two utterly different, but equally impressive, performances. Sent to Spain to persuade Ray Winstone’s retired con Gal Dove to do one more job, Kingsley’s sociopathic Don Logan comes out with so many quotable lines – most of them littered with expletives – it’s hard to pick the best, but one of the most memorable – and least sweary – is offered in response to yet another refusal from Winstone’s Gal: “No, you are going to have to turn this opportunity yes!”. Kingsley was nominated once again for Best Actor In A Supporting Role – but the Academy didn’t turn the opportunity yes.

MAsTer work / Kingsley as gangster Don Logan in Sexy Beast, a role that showcased his acting breadth

mar School, where the “wonderful” film society exposed him to regular screenings of classic movies, including the films of his favourite director, Sergei Eisenstein, “the great Russian filmmaker”. Then, as many of Britain’s greatest actors have, he cut his teeth in the theatre at the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC), which he joined in 1967. “That’s a merciless environment to be in; you sink or swim. You’re being hammered on the anvil constantly to fashion you into an actor with stamina who understands the text, the verse, the meter, who is vocally equipped and physically equipped to project it into what was then and still is an enormous auditorium [at Stratford Upon Avon],” he says of those early years on the stage. “It [also taught me] to love that language and to also deeply appreciate his [Shakespeare’s] perception and genuine patterns of human behaviour. That’s always compelled me whenever I


Open skies / january 2013

read a script – is there in the script a genuine dance, a genuine pattern of human behaviour or is it just confection?” During his time at the RSC, Krishna Bhanji became Ben Kingsley, made his first forays into film and television and, in 1975, played Hamlet – a performance reportedly watched by the great British actor-director Richard Attenborough. Then one day Attenborough called him up – he must have enjoyed the play – and asked him if he wanted to play Mohandas Gandhi in a film about the pacifist Indian nationalist leader. This became 1982’s multi-Oscar-winning Gandhi. “It was the golden door through which I entered the film industry,” he says of the film that won him an Academy Award and launched his film career. “A beautiful film, still very current, still seen by millions every year, and with a maestro of a director. I’ve been nominated for an Academy Award four times, and I would


not have had a career without that beautiful film. Thank God it was me.” Sir Ben famously prepared for Gandhi by learning to spin cotton and meditate, as Gandhi had done, but he denies being a method actor, explaining that he will look in a script for something that for him is the essence of the character. “There is one gesture when I’m reading a script that will make my hair stand on end, and I’ll go, ‘There you are,’ and I’ll play it, and that gesture can be very little, it can be utterly crucial to the man’s choices, but it’s some pivotal moment that can seem almost incidental, but I think, ‘No, there you are, there you are.’ Of course you make that gesture,” he explains. Strangely the trait that allowed Sir Ben to tap into the character of the world’s most famous pacifist was anger. “That was the gesture – the gesture of deep rage and indignation that you could possibly do this to another human being – that informed the whole of my performance as Gandhi,” he says. “It’s how you translate that anger into an intelligent, elegant, life-affirming existence, or punch somebody in the face. And you have the choice. Don Logan would punch you in the face.” I ask him if he has a large capacity for anger. “Well you have, and anyone in this room has. All of us have in us Myra Hindley and Mother Teresa Of Calcutta, all of us have within us Adolf Hitler and Mahatma Gandhi, it’s what life brings out of us that will tilt that balance over that fulcrum,” he says. “We lead very ordered, decent lives. Nobody has ever got us into a corner out of which we’ve had to fight, I love it [playing but I can guarantee that, without doing Don Logan in anybody a disservice Sexy Beast] in this room, we all have that potential because I am for violence. I am no not bipolar, different.” I just have a At this point I am tapped on the broad range shoulder and asked and that’s very to wrap it up, with healthy and 30 years of Sir Ben’s very good career yet to be dis-

cussed. What film, what character will people want to know about? Mobster Meyer Lansky in Barry Levinson’s 1991 film, Bugsy? Oskar Schindler’s uncomplaining Jewish accountant Itzhak Stern in Spielberg’s Schindler’s List? The Hood in Thunderbirds? No, it has to be the role that Sir Ben himself admits he is most often associated with. Don Logan, the sociopathic hard man sent to Spain to persuade Ray Winstone’s ex-con to pull one more job in Jonathan Glazer’s 2000 film Sexy Beast. How did he prepare for what is one of the most memorable performances of his long, distinguished career: an Oscar nominated performance? “I just recognised him,” he says. Does he mind that he’s associated with such a violent character? “I love it. Because I’m not bipolar, I just have a broad range, and that’s very healthy and very good.” The interview is ended, the digital recorder is turned off, but as the photographer snaps away, I discover that Martin Scorsese is “very quiet” and that Sir Ben will voice the lead in animated film Here Be Monsters (due for release in 2014), will be playing a man in uniform, a member of an extraordinary royal family and a failed writer in three other films, and is now producing movies, but will be “participating as an actor in front of the camera as well as cooking all the ingredients together as producer”. Standing up and shaking my hand, Sir Ben brings his performance to a close. “Thank you, thank you very much,” he says with what seems like an almost genuine smile this time. “That was a lovely conversation.” As the man himself puts it, “I’m profoundly an actor, so that’s it for me.” And so he is – one of the best in the business.

George Phree is a film writer based in Hanover


Open skies / january 2013

ITzHAk sTerN / Schindler’s List (1993) Whatever some of the critics say about its historical accurancy, Schindler’s List, disturbing vision of The Holocaust focused on the actions of three different individuals, became a classic the minute it hit cinema screens in 1993. Liam Neeson was superb as the fun-loving Nazi German businessman Oskar Schindler, the unlikely saviour of more than one thousand Jews. Ralph Fiennes was even better as concentration camp commandant Amon Göth, but Kingsley’s understated portrayal of Schindler’s Jewish accountant Itzhak Stern, who keeps his cool despite the horror, provides the soul of Steven Spielberg’s most harrowing movie. The fact that Kingsley was not nominated for an Oscar is truly astonishing.


Meyer LANskI / Bugsy (1991) Adapted by James Toback from Dean Jennings’ 1967 book about the life of mobster Bugsy Siegel, We Only Kill Each Other, Barry Levinson’s Bugsy boasts an all-star line-up that includes Warren Beatty and Harvey Keitel, making it hard to distinguish who the star is, but Kingsley was deservedly nominated for the Best Actor In A Supporting Role Oscar for his portrayal of veteran mobster Meyer Lansky. During one of the film’s most memorable scenes, Kingsley’s Lansky warns Siegel about his ever-increasing fame: “Famous isn’t good, Ben. For Clarke Gable it’s good, for Joe DiMaggio it’s good, for you it’s not good.” His delivery in a New York drawl is faultless.




WARSAW MUNDY & CO ALL SMILES We explore the the Polish capital, set to be Emirates’ latest route

Meet the newest members of the Emirates’ family, named by you

Emirates helps charity through its Ramadan recycling

A New Home The A380 moves into its new purpose-built home in Terminal 3, the first of its kind in the world. We explore the state-ofthe-art facility


• • • • • • • •

Contract Drafting & Review Business Setup , Offshore & Free Zone Companies Corporate & Commercial Legal Services Litigation & Arbitration Debt Collection Banking, Insurance & Maritime Cases Real Estate, Construction & Labor Cases Trademarks, Patents & Copyrights

‫ﺻﻴﺎﻏﺔ ﺍﻟﻌﻘﻮﺩ ﻭﻣﺮﺍﺟﻌﺘﻬﺎ‬ ‫ﺗﺄﺳﻴﺲ ﺍﻟﺸﺮﻛﺎﺕ ﻭﺍﻷﻭﻓﺸﻮﺭ ﻭﺍﳌﻨﺎﻃﻖ ﺍﳊﺮﺓ‬ ‫ﺍﳋﺪﻣﺎﺕ ﺍﻟﻘﺎﻧﻮﻧﻴﺔ ﻟﻸﻓﺮﺍﺩ ﻭﺍﻟﺸﺮﻛﺎﺕ‬ ‫ﺍﻟﺘﻘﺎﺿﻲ ﻭ ﺍﻟﺘﺤﻜﻴﻢ‬ ‫ﲢﺼﻴﻞ ﺍﻟﺪﻳﻮﻥ‬ ‫ﻗﻀﺎﻳﺎ ﺍﻟﺒﻨﻮﻙ ﻭﺍﻟﺘﺄﻣﲔ ﻭﺍﻟﻘﻀﺎﻳﺎ ﺍﻟﺒﺤﺮﻳﺔ‬ ‫ﻗﻀﺎﻳﺎ ﺍﳌﻘﺎﻭﻻﺕ ﻭﺍﻟﻌﻘﺎﺭﺍﺕ ﻭﺍﻟﻘﻀﺎﻳﺎ ﺍﻟﻌﻤﺎﻟﻴﺔ‬ ‫ﺍﻟﻌﻼﻣﺎﺕ ﺍﻟﺘﺠﺎﺭﻳﺔ ﻭﺑﺮﺍﺀﺍﺕ ﺍﻻﺧﺘﺮﺍﻉ ﻭﺣﻘﻮﻕ ﺍﳌﺆﻟﻒ‬

• • • • • • • •

DUBAI EMIRATES TOWERS, 14TH FLOOR, SHEIKH ZAYED ROAD P.O. BOX: 9055, DUBAI, UAE TEL: +971 4 330 4343 | FAX: +971 4 330 3993 | ABU DHABI Tel: +971 2 6394446

RAS AL KHAIMAH Tel: +971 7 2046719

DUBAI INTERNET CITY Tel: +971 4 3900820

SHARJAH Tel: +971 6 5728666

JEBEL ALI Tel: +971 4 8871679

DIFC Tel: +971 4 4019562




Wondrous Warsaw Emirates will be introducing daily flights to Warsaw from February 6. Here’s our pick of what to see in the Polish capital 01 Royal Castle The official residence of the Polish monarchs, the Royal Castle is located at the entrance to the Old Town in the Castle Square. At the top of the imposing brick façade is an enormous clock tower designed in the sixteenth century. Today the castle serves as a museum, although it still hosts state visits and official meetings. 02 St. John’s Cathedral As one of the oldest churches in the city, St. John’s Cathedral is also one of the most impressive. Originally built in 1390 the church would undergo many stages of restructuring until it was largely destroyed during the Second World War. Following the ending of the war it was then rebuilt based on the 14th-century church’s presumed appearance and not on its pre-war appearance. 03 Praga Traditionally the ragged and run-down part of Warsaw, Praga’s streets of abandoned warehouses slowly began attracting artists and musicians and has since blossomed into one of its most vibrant and creative suburbs.

04 Old Town Despite being decimated at the back end of Second World War, the Old Town is now not only a UNESCO protected world heritage site, but also one of Warsaw’s busier tourist streets. Among the coffee shops and tourist attractions there are still plenty of reminders of its recent history.

Perfect timing Don’t miss your next Emirates flight. Make sure you get to your boarding gate on time. Boarding starts 45 minutes before your flight and gates close 20 minutes before departure. If you report late we will not be able to accept you for travel. Thank you for your cooperation.


Open skies / january 2013

05 Warsaw Rising Museum Based in a former tram power station, the Uprising Museum is one of the capital’s more popular museums. The range of exhibits takes the visitor through the history of the capital through Nazi occupation, the Second World War and its role as part of the former Soviet Union.

A new home for the emirAtes A380 The Emirates A380 fleet has a new home at Dubai International Airport that promises to transform the travel experience. Emirates Terminal 3 has expanded to include a purposebuilt facility for the Emirates A380 – the only one of its kind in the world. That means faster boarding, smoother connections and added amenities for every visitor. MulTi-level bOaRding Boarding gates are all multi-level with air bridges to the upper and lower decks to speed boarding and deplaning for all passengers. This allows First Class and Business Class customers to have direct access from the airport lounges to the A380’s upper-deck cabins.

connected to Emirates Terminal 3 by regular underground trains and shuttle buses. MORe SHOPPing & dining Expanded duty-free shopping and dining options that include everything from cafés to fine dining. THe laTeST lOungeS Extra spacious, state-of-the-art First Class and Business Class lounges feature their own Timeless Spa for express treatments, a range of dining options, rest areas and duty free shopping outlets in the First Class lounge. When it is time to board, First and Business Class travellers can access their gate directly from their lounge.

HOTel & SPa The new Dubai International Hotel features deluxe rooms and suites, an Executive Floor with lounge, and a full-service Timeless Spa. The hotel is situated airside for passengers in transit. geTTing THeRe The new A gates are conveniently

emirAtes’ growing fAmily Emirates’ family of colourful ‘Fly With Me’ monsters has grown with the introduction of four new original characters named by Emirates’ global community. The cuddly new toy collectables for children named Worzel, Mundy, Grumpel and Furgus join four existing characters in the collection, and are ideal travel companions to fuel a child’s imagination. The names were chosen through a process that allowed a diverse audience to connect with Emirates across different platforms across social media, online channels and the Emirates’ Skywards Skysurfers programme. Green monster Worzel was named by Emirates’ Facebook community of over one million fans (facebook. com/Emirates), Mundy and Grumpel are winning names selected by online communities in Brazil and Germany respectively, and red monster Furgus has been named by an Emirates’ Skywards Skysurfers member.


Open skies / january 2013


ETS SaNITy PLaNE REcycLING Retired aircraft are getting a new lease of life after commercial airplane makers reaffirmed their desire to build planes from recycled material. With 12,000 passenger planes due to be retired over the next 20 years and the rising price of metal, manufacturers are getting further incentives to reuse materials – with the aluminium alone worth up to US$100,000. Leading aircraft manufacturers, Airbus and Boeing, have committed to building more sustainable aircraft using recycled materials as well as making their planes easier to recycle once they are no longer in service. Boeing’s recent deal to share carbon fiber recycling research with car manufacturers BMW could have a large impact as it is 30 per cent lighter than aluminum. This trend will help the industry reduce the environmental footprint of manufacturing and dependence on imports of raw materials that are used to build aircraft.

International Air Transport Association has welcomed the announcement by the European Commissioner for Climate Action to suspend the inclusion of international aviation in the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS). Last month the EU chose to delay its decision to implement its EU ETS until later this year, after agreeing to postpone the members’ voting on the scheme following opposition from other countries. The acceptance of the EU ETS would have imposed future costs on flights to and from non-EU countries. The ETS, which was launched in 2005 to be the cornerstone of the EU’s policies on tackling climate change, caps carbon emissions on factories and power plants in the 27-nation bloc, forcing them to buy carbon permits if they exceed the limit. The EU’s US$148 billion ETS is core to Europe’s efforts to prompt utilities and industries within the trading bloc to go green – but the drop in the price of carbon has reached such a level that countries are able to buy more carbon for the same price, removing the core incentives of the project. The EU decision cames after the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) agreed to set up a committee to work through difficult political issues such as how to deal fairly with developing nations.





the number of people employed worldwide in aviation and related tourism Source: ATAG’s ABBB report

if aviation were a country, it would rank 19th by Gdp Source: ATAG’s ABBB report

WINNING SMILE Emirates’ Emvironment team has plenty to smile about this month after raising Dhs27,000 for charity. The Recycling for Ramadan campaign was organised by the Environmental Affairs department – and a network of environmentally conscious staff – donating the money raised to the UAE-based charity Operation Smile, which helps children born with cleft palates in the developing world. Employees throughout the Emirates Group were encouraged to increase their recycling efforts during the month of Ramadan, in return for a cheque from recycling companies based on the quantity of goods collected.


Open skies / january 2013

Normally, the funds go back into other environment projects, but this year the money was donated directly to Operation Smile. The amount donated will pay for surgery for 38 children, which normally costs Operation Smile around Dhs700 per procedure. “It was fantastic to get the support of so many of our employees for this project, particularly those who are passionate about environmental issues,” said an Emirates spokesperson. “I’m hoping we can turn Recycling for Ramadan into an annual campaign across the Group, using recycling monies to help worthy causes worldwide.”

Your home in Dubai

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Opposite Metro Station Walking distance to Burj Khalifa, world’s tallest skyscraper Dubai Airport - 15 min. Abu Dhabi Airport - 45 min. Walking distance to shopping malls Close to Business Hubs ( DIFC, DWTC ) SPA & Outdoor Swimming Pool

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Sheikh Zayed Road, P.O Box 116957, Dubai, United Arab Emirates Tel: +971 4 323 0000 Fax: +971 4 323 0003



in the air

to help you arrive at your destination feeling relaxed and refreshed, Emirates has developed this collection of helpful travel tips. Regardless of whether you need to rejuvenate for your holiday or be effective at achieving your goals on a business trip, these simple tips will help you to enjoy your journey and time on board with Emirates today.

smart traveller

Before Your JourneY Consult your doctor before travelling if you have any medical concerns about making a long journey, or

drink plenty of water

if you suffer from a respiratory or

rehYDrAte With WAter or Juices frequentlY.

cardiovascular condition.

Drink teA AnD coffee in moDerAtion.

Plan for the destination – will you need any vaccinations or special medications? Get a good night’s rest before

travel lightly

the flight.

cArrY onlY the essentiAl items thAt You

Eat lightly and sensibly.

Will neeD During Your flight.

At the Airport Allow yourself plenty of timefor check-in.

wear glasses

Avoid carrying heavy bags through

cABin Air is Drier thAn normAl therefore

the airport and onto the flight

sWAp Your contAct lenses for glAsses.

as this can place the body under considerable stress. Once through to departures try and relax as much as possible.

use skin moisturiser

During the flight

ApplY A gooD quAlitY moisturiser to ensure Your skin Doesn’t DrY out.

Chewing and swallowing will help equalise your ear pressure during ascent and descent. Babies and young passengers may

keep moving

suffer more acutely with popping

exercise Your loWer legs AnD cAlf

ears, therefore consider providing

muscles. this encourAges BlooD floW.

a dummy. Get as comfortable as possible when resting and turn frequently. Avoid sleeping for long periods in

make yourself comfortable

the same position.

loosen clothing, remove JAcket AnD AvoiD

When You Arrive

AnYthing pressing AgAinst Your BoDY.

Try some light exercise or read if you can’t sleep after arrival.


Open skies / january 2013



cabin crew will be happy to help if you need assistance completing the forms

Whether you’re travelling to, or through, the United States today, this simple guide to completing the US customs and immigration forms will help to ensure that your journey is as hassle

free as possible. The Cabin Crew will offer you two forms when you are nearing your destination. We provide guidelines below, so you can correctly complete the forms.

to Us cUstoms & immigration forms

customs declaration form

immigration form

The immigration Form I-94 (Arrival / Departure Record) should be completed if you are a non-US citizen in possession of a valid US visa and your final destination is the US or if you are in transit to a country outside the US. A separate form must be completed for each person, including children travelling on their parents’ passport. The form includes a Departure Record which must be kept safe and given to your airline when you leave the US. If you hold a US or Canadian passport, US Alien Resident Visa (Green Card), US Immigrant Visa or a valid ESTA (right), you are not required to complete an immigration form.

All passengers arriving into the US need to complete a Customs DeClaration Form. If you are travelling as a family this should be completed by one member only. The form must be completed in English, in capital letters, and must be signed where indicated.


Open skies / january 2013

43.6 The size in thousand square metres of The cargo mega Terminal where skycargo’s operaTions are based

electronic system for travel authorisation (esta)

if you are an international traveller wishing to enter the united states under the Visa waiver programme, you must apply for electronic authorisation (esta) up to 72 hours prior to your departure. esta facts:

children and infants require an individual esta. the online esta system will inform you whether your application has been authorised, not authorised or if authorisation is pending. a successful esta application is valid for two years, however this may be revoked or will expire along with your passport. apply online at

nationalities eligible for the visa waiver*:

andorra, australia, austria, belgium, brunei, czech republic, denmark, estonia, finland, france, germany, hungary, iceland, ireland, italy, Japan, latvia, liechtenstein, lithuania, luxemburg, malta, monaco, the netherlands, new Zealand, norway, portugal, san marino, singapore, slovakia, slovenia, south Korea, spain, sweden, switzerland and theunited Kingdom**. *

subject to change

** only british citizens qualify under the visa waiver programme.

60,000 The number of people employed worldwide in aviaTion and relaTed Tourism







Open skies / january 2013






Open skies / january 2013


The Fleet

Our fleet cOntains 198 planes. Made up Of 188 passenger planes and 10 cargO planes

Boeing 777-300eR Number of Aircraft: 84 Capacity: 354-442 Range: 14,594km Length: 73.9m Wingspan: 64.8m

Boeing 777-300 Number of Aircraft: 12 Capacity: 364 Range: 11,029km Length: 73.9m Wingspan: 60.9m

Boeing 777-200LR Number of Aircraft: 10 Capacity: 266 Range: 17,446km Length: 63.7m Wingspan: 64.8m

Boeing 777-200 Number of Aircraft: 9 Capacity: 274-346 Range: 9,649km Length: 63.7m Wingspan: 60.9m

Boeing 777F Number of Aircraft: 6 Range: 9,260km Length: 63.7m Wingspan: 64.8m

For more inFormation:


Open skies / january 2013

AiRBus A380-800 Number of Aircraft: 31 Capacity: 489-5 17 Range: 15,000km Length: 72.7m Wingspan: 79.8m

AiRBus A340-500 Number of Aircraft: 10 Capacity: 258 Range: 16,050km Length: 67.9m Wingspan: 63.4m

AiRBus A340-300 Number of Aircraft: 8 Capacity: 267 Range: 13,350km Length: 63.6m Wingspan: 60.3m

AiRBus A330-200 Number of Aircraft: 24 Capacity: 237-278 Range: 12,200km Length: 58.8m Wingspan: 60.3m

Boeing 747-400F/747-400eRF Number of Aircraft: 1/2 Range: 8,232km/9,204km Length: 70.6m Wingspan: 64.4m

aircraFt numbers as oF 31/01/2013


Open skies / january 2013

Ne x t h t n o M


ext month we will be visiting Sao Paulo and exploring this fascinating city of 20 million people; figuring out the best places to eat, stay, see and party. We will profile one of Dubai’s most interesting galleries – a maze of curios, art, photography and collectibles in the heart of Al Quoz. We journey to the Japanese capital to focus on one of the most interesting bookstores in the world, a retail outlet that takes the concept of the bookstore to a new level. We feature some of the most stunning aerial photography in the world and we explore the new world of Bitcoin. See you next month.


Open skies / january 2013

The first signature Windows Phone with Beats AudioTM

| Incredible sound experience with exclusive built-in amp for | Front camera with ultra-wide-angle lens captures twice the image area to fit more in every shot | Personalised real-time updates with Live Tiles on a brilliant display The new Windows Phone 8X by HTC is available in stores now

Copyright Š 2012 HTC Corporation. All rights reserved.

Jessica Chastain

Open Skies | January 2013  

Open Skies | January 2013