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    DAMAC Introduces DAMAC Casa: Holiday Living at the Heart of Dubai

    DAMAC Properties, a luxury real estate development trailblazer, unveils its latest architectural masterpiece, DAMAC Casa. Poised at the heart of Dubai, this remarkable tower reimagines the concept of vertical island living, offering residents an extraordinary fusion of water, tranquillity, and opulence.
    DAMAC Casa takes inspiration from the essence of water, serving as the driving force behind this innovative architectural endeavour. Located in the Al Sufouh area and with Dubai’s iconic Palm as its backdrop, the tower encapsulates the serenity of island living in every facet of its design. Drawing inspiration from the lotus flower, which thrives in aquatic environments, the tower aims to enhance residents’ experience with unparalleled water views.“We are proud to present our latest offering, DAMAC Casa, which adds another feather to our portfolio of unique, luxury towers. With every detail thoughtfully crafted, the tower reflects our vision of providing unparalleled experiences to our discerning clientele. Drawing from our years of experience and feedback from our community, this addition exemplifies the essence of what we stand for as a company,” said Niall McLoughlin, Senior Vice President at DAMAC. Amenities Beyond Imagination

    Situated close to DAMAC’s Cavalli Tower, DAMAC Casa boasts amenities that redefine luxury living. At its heart is the “Flying Island,” a breathtaking oasis enveloped by water and its super luxury units feature circular outdoor terraces, capturing 270-degree water views.The tower will feature oasis-inspired retreats with the pools transforming into an island oasis surrounded by lush greenery, offering a Dubai living experience like no other. The Aqua Spa is an aquatic haven, with treatment rooms seemingly floating on water, providing an ethereal relaxation experience.
    DAMAC Casa is set to introduce one of Dubai’s first scuba stimulators offering diverse virtual reality experiences, from the Red Sea to the Indian Ocean, or even the wonders of space. The pools will be surrounded by palm gardens.Aqua art will embellish the tower and kids’ play area. Children can express their aquatic creativity in dedicated spaces, with their aqua sketches displayed on digital screens in the lobby.A chill-out lounge recreates the essence of island living, while a 360-degree transparent glass pool concept is under exploration. Public areas within DAMAC Casa will immerse you in an underwater world, harnessing digital components to create stunning aquatic effects. Indoor beach effects grace the walkways. The tower will offer 1, 2, and 3-bedroom luxury apartments, and 3, 4 and 5-bedroom super luxury apartments with each its own private lift. Each super luxury unit boasts its own oasis-vibe pool, providing an exclusive retreat within this vertical paradise.ADVERTISEMENT

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    TUI becomes first UK tour operator to offer British Sign Language interpretation

    Leading travel and leisure company, TUI, has joined forces with SignLive to be the first UK tour operator to give customers the option to have their conversations with the travel firm interpreted into British Sign Language (BSL).
    Deaf customers can sign up for free to SignLive ( and call via the online directory to have their telephone conversations with TUI Accessibility teams interpreted in real time.
    Sue Bradley, TUI Director of Customer Experience, said: “At TUI we want to make travelling with us as easy as possible for everyone. SignLive has come to us with an amazing solution for our customers who use British Sign Language (BSL). This service means that these customers can have conversations with our team to ensure they book the perfect holiday for them and get any additional support they might need.
    “Customers can speak to our contact centre team about new or existing bookings all by signing up to SignLive for free for support with hotel information, navigating airports or booking accessible transfers in resort.”
    Fiona Mackay, COO of SignLive said: “We’re delighted to be working with TUI to make travel more accessible for Deaf people. This partnership makes communication smoother and the overall experience of going on holiday much easier for British Sign Language users. Customers can travel with confidence knowing they can communicate via an interpreter throughout their journey.”ADVERTISEMENTThe service went live last week, and a video has been produced to explain all about the partnership and the service available via SignLive. Link here.


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    Youth travel agency KILROY opens first UK store in Bristol

    Youth travel agency KILROY launched its first UK store in Bristol this weekend – opening its doors for the first time on Saturday 16th September with a well-attended launch party. 
    KILROY celebrated the Bristol store opening at 43 Queens Road in Clifton with a jam-packed day of inspiring travel talks, prize giveaways and entertainment to attract the area’s vibrant population of students and young travellers.
    Established in Denmark in 1991, and now the largest youth and student travel agency in the Nordic region, KILROY announced its launch in the UK earlier this year, which was spurred by the country’s burgeoning youth travel scene.
    Niclas Lundquist, UK Commercial Director at KILROY said: “Bristol was the top choice for KILROY’s first UK store opening thanks to its young, vibrant student population and proximity to universities. The property at 43 Queens Road couldn’t be more fitting for a student and youth travel brand, having previously housed STA Travel. We’re incredibly excited to help fill the gap for tailored youth travel in the Bristol area and look forward to meeting the city’s dynamic young travellers.”   Jacob Strømfeldt, Sales Director for KILROY, travelled from Copenhagen to be part of the launch and said: “Bristol is the perfect location for our first UK store and marks the first step in our plans to be the go-to youth and student travel brand in the country. All of us at KILROY were excited to see such a great reception to the opening event and how our local team is bringing the brand to life in the UK.”
    The Bristol store opens with a team of four travel advisors to help plan and design dream adventures for students and young travellers, with that number expected to grow over the coming months.  ADVERTISEMENTLundquist added: “Our expansion into the UK market is a long-term investment for KILROY. We are committed to serving the market and will do so from Bristol to begin with. We are continuously evaluating new opportunities beyond Bristol to achieve a nationwide reach througha combination of physical stores and online presence.”
    From the start of Saturday’s launch event at midday to its closing at 5pm, KILROY gave away five incredible trips every hour, including a round-the-world adventure visiting three continents with stops in Thailand, Singapore, Australia and the USA. KILROY’s local team of travel experts presented talks on Thailand, Peru, surfing in Costa Rica and working holidays in Australia.
    More than 170 people attended the event on Saturday and five lucky locals were thrilled to win the chance to explore the world with KILROY.There was also food and drinks, music from local DJ Bad n Boothe, free travel-themed tattoos, and a live illustration by local artist Ruby Taylor who has worked with international brands including Gordon’s Gin and Schwarzkopf.

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    Emaar Reports a 15% Net Profit Growth in H1 2023 and Group Property Sales of AED 20.2 billion

    Emaar Properties PJSC (DFM: EMAAR) has released its financial results for the first half of 2023, showcasing consistent performance and operational efficiency across its various businesses.
    Key Accomplishment HighlightsEmaar’s recorded half-year 2023 revenues of AED 12.3 billion (US$ 3.3 billion) with net profit growing by 15% compared to same period last year, reaching to AED 4.9 billion (US$ 1.3 billion). The consistent performance was driven by the growth in tourism, retail sales, and sustained real estate demand in Dubai.Emaar’s focus on improving profit margins and operational efficiencies resulted in achieving higher EBITDA, which grew by 5% to AED 6.4 billion (US$ 1.7 billion) compared to H1 2022.
    Emaar achieved H1 2023 group property sales of AED 20.2 billion (US$ 5.5 billion), a 14% YoY growth.Supported by incremental property sales, the company’s revenue backlog from property sales reached AED 62.8 billion (US$ 17.1 billion) as of 30th June 2023. This backlog represents future revenue from property sales to be recognised over the next few years.
    During the period, Emaar has received credit rating upgrades from major rating agencies S&P (BBB), Moody’s (Baa2) and Fitch (BBB), all with a stable outlook. These upgrades reflect Emaar’s financial performance and improved financial position. Overall, these positive indicators point to a better outlook for Emaar’s future.
    Mohamed Alabbar, Founder of Emaar, said: “Emaar’s recent performance reflects our ongoing commitment to sustained profitable growth and in our focus on meeting the needs of our loyal and new customers. Our investments have resulted in strong returns, driving our growth and improving our operations. We are confident in our ability to continue executing our business strategy and meeting customer demand as we move forward in the year.”ADVERTISEMENTUAE Build-To-Sell Property DevelopmentEmaar Development PJSC (DFM: EMAARDEV), a majority-owned subsidiary, achieved property sales of AED 19 billion (US$ 5.2 billion) during the first half of 2023, reflecting a growth of 25% over H1 2022.UAE build-to-sell operation reported H1 2023 revenue of AED 6.3 billion (US$ 1.7 billion) and successfully launched 16 new projects in the UAE. In June 2023, Emaar Development also unveiled yet another master-planned development, “The Oasis”, a luxury lifestyle destination.
    Shopping Mall, Retail and Commercial LeasingIn H1 2023, Emaar’s shopping mall, retail, and commercial leasing operations reported an 8% growth in revenue compared to the previous year, reaching AED 3.1 billion (US$ 844 million). During the same period, the portfolio yielded an EBITDA of AED 3.2 billion (US$ 871 million), a 77% increase over H1 2022. This success is credited to robust tenant sales, which rose by approximately 30% compared to H1 2022. Emaar Malls Management’s prime mall assets achieved an impressive occupancy rate of approximately 96%.
    Emaar International Emaar’s international real estate operations reported property sales of AED 1.2 billion (US$ 327 million) and revenues totalling AED 1.3 billion (US$ 354 million) during the first half of 2023. Primarily driven by operations in Egypt and India, revenues from international real estate operations represent 11% of Emaar’s total revenue.
    Hospitality, Leisure, and EntertainmentIn the first half of 2023, Emaar’s hospitality, leisure, and entertainment divisions generated AED 1.6 billion (US$ 436 million) in revenue, marking an 18% increase from H1 2022. The growth was driven by the steady recovery in the tourism industry and strong domestic spending. Emaar’s UAE hotels, including those under management, reported an average occupancy rate of 70% in the first half of 2023.During the period, Emaar also announced the opening of its newest hotel, Address Jabal Omar Makkah, featuring around 1,500 keys and conveniently located at the heart of the holy city.
    Recurring RevenueEmaar’s H1 2023 financial results show an 11% increase in recurring revenue compared to H1 2022.The company’s recurring revenue-generating portfolio, including malls, hospitality, leisure, entertainment, and commercial leasing, collectively generated AED 4.7 billion (US$ 1.3 billion) during H1 2023. This revenue represents 38% of Emaar’s total revenue from these businesses.

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    New York Times’ Best Folding Bikes: DAHON’s Mariner D8 Tops the List

    For over four decades, folding bike pioneer DAHON has always been at the forefront of technological innovation. Its high-quality folding bikes are at the heart and mind of bike riders around the world.To find out which folding bike does it all the best for most commuter riders and utilitarian users, the New York Times has conducted a survey on 13 popular models from 9 manufacturers, with 85+ hours of research and rigorous testing on the aspects of user experience, comfort of riding, ease of folding, and bike weight.
    At last, the well-designed DAHON Mariner D8 stood out with all those aspects, combining good riding experience, high-quality components, and a reasonable price, topping the chart of “New York Times’ Best Folding Bikes”.
    The design inspiration of DAHON Mariner D8 originates from the sailing concept. The super anti-rust surface of its parts is suitable for high-salt and high-humidity environments. Marine D8 can be stored on board a yacht or a boat for a long time before the rider goes for a comfortable ride on the island.
    Upon folding, Mariner D8 can be stored in the trunk of a car or a recreation vehicle. Whether carrying on the bus or in the subway, commuters can easily carry it around in the hustle and bustle of the city. Mariner D8 can easily meet the travel needs of cyclists. It can be described as an “all-rounded chariot”.
    The New York Times notes that “the Mariner D8 rides comfortably, smoothing over bumps and shifting fluidly up and down hills; it folds and unfolds quickly and locks securely in both modes; the design also addresses practical concerns”. It comes with fenders to keep mud from splashing in the rain; the front bag can be installed on the frame, and the rear frame can carry and hang items.ADVERTISEMENTWell-known bicycle magazines such as Canadian Cycling Magazine and Momentum Mag coined DAHON Mariner D8 as the best choice for green commuting and leisure travel.
    “Good value for money with perfect craft design” is the true feeling of most riders who have experienced DAHON folding bikes.
    To make the single-beam folding bike stronger, more stable and faster, the Founder and CEO Dr. David Hon led the R&D team on a rigorous research to develop a patent of “Folding Bike Frame with Reinforced Cable at the Down Tube”, giving birth to the DELTEC cable nowadays.
    With DELTEC cable installed on a single-beam folding bike, a stable triangular structure is formed at the frame, which greatly increases the service life and load capacity of the overall frame structure. At the same time, the longitudinal rigidity of the whole vehicle is increased by 15%-35%, and the force of pedaling is effectively converted into propulsion, reducing energy loss and being faster than other vehicles.
    In the future, DAHON will continue to innovate folding bikes’ design and actively promote green and environmentally friendly lifestyle.
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    Embraer deliveries increase 47% in 2Q23

    Embraer delivered a total of 47 jets in the second quarter of 2023, of which 17 were commercial aircraft and 30 were executive jets (19 light jets and 11 midsize jets).During the year, the company delivered a total of 62 aircraft (24 commercial and 38 executive). The second quarter deliveries were 47% higher than in the same period from 2022. In the first half of 2023, the volume has increased 35% compared to 2022, when 46 jets have been delivered. Compared to the second quarter of 2022, deliveries volume increased by 55% in Commercial Aviation and 43% in Executive Jets. The firm order backlog ended the period at US$ 17.3 billion.
    In Commercial Aviation, American Airlines signed a firm order with Embraer for seven new E175s. The aircraft will be operated by the subsidiary Envoy Air. With deliveries to begin 4Q23, Envoy’s fleet of E-Jets will grow to over 141 aircraft by the end of 2024.
    Embraer also received a firm order from Binter for six E195-E2s, which will bring Binter’s E2 fleet to 16 jets when deliveries are completed. This order will be included in Embraer’s backlog once all contractual contingencies are cleared.
    Malaysia’s SKS Airways closed an agreement to add ten E195-E2 jets to its fleet. In addition, SKS joined the Pool Program to support aircraft to be operated in Southeast Asia. Scoot, a low-cost subsidiary of Singapore Airlines, is also adding nine E190-E2s to its portfolio. And Royal Jordanian Airlines reached an agreement to introduce eight E190-E2 and E195-E2 jets into its operations, with deliveries starting in the 4Q23. All three agreements involved contracts with the leasing company Azorra.
    Four E175s began to operate with Star Air, an Indian airline that already operates E-Jets. Star Air has also extended its Pool Program contract to include the E175s in its fleet.ADVERTISEMENTIn addition to Star Air and SKS Airways, Embraer Services & Support signed Pool Program contract extensions with Rex Group (Australia) and Amelia (France). Another highlight of the quarter for the business unit was the announcement of 20 E-Jets P2F for the Lanzhou Group. This is the first Embraer P2F agreement in China.
    In Executive Aviation, NetJets signed a contract with Embraer for the acquisition of up to 250 Praetor 500 jet options. The deal is valued at more than US$ 5 billion, and deliveries are expected to begin in 2025.
    For Embraer Defense & Security, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed with Saab to position the C-390 Millennium as the preferred solution for the tactical air transport requirements of the Swedish Air Force and in the search for opportunities for potential Gripen customers in Latin America.

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    Heathrow Launches Groundbreaking Trial of Low Carbon Concrete, Targeting 50% Emission Reduction

    Heathrow has kickstarted a ground-breaking new trial, exploring the viability of lower carbon concrete, which cuts emissions by 50% compared to a conventional concrete. The initiative followed Heathrow’s sponsorship of a PhD candidate at the University of Surrey who undertook three years of lab work to reach this point. The trial has been designed to test the concrete’s durability and longevity in a true to life airport setting and is one of the first of its kind at any airport in the world.
    As part of Heathrow’s holistic sustainability strategy – Heathrow 2.0 – the airport is committed to reducing on the ground emissions as well as those in the air. With at least 6% of global carbon emissions each year linked to concrete production, Ecocem and Cemex’s innovative concrete solution has the potential to radically reduce the carbon output of infrastructure projects at the airport. The aim is for the trial’s findings to be used to set out a blueprint that other airports, keen to reduce carbon from all facets of their operation, can follow. This trial is the first of a number being planned that will test and trial other low carbon concrete materials on the market. It is intended that the outcomes of these trials can be used to reduce embedded carbon in a number of projects being delivered by Ferrovial Construction and Dyer & Butler at Heathrow.
    The project, led by Jacobs and implemented by Cemex and Ecocem will see four different applications trialled in a pouring site located close to the control tower. These will replicate use in a range of typical airport infrastructure applications, including airfield pavements, encompassing runways and taxiways as well as reinforced pit cover slabs and other ancillary concrete types. With aircraft taking off and landing close to every 45 seconds at Heathrow, it is critical the concrete undergoes rigorous testing to ensure its strength and durability can withstand the pressures of the one of the world’s busiest airports.
    Nigel Milton, Chief of Staff and Carbon at Heathrow said: “Heathrow is once again serving as a testbed for ground-breaking technologies, demonstrating global leadership with regards to sustainable travel. We’re committed to cutting carbon emissions on the ground as well as in the air and we’re delighted to be hosting one of the first airport trials in the world to test lower carbon alternatives. I hope that this trial will help radically transform the built environment at Heathrow in the years to come.”
    Richard Moore, Europe Aviation Engineering Lead at Jacobs said: “Jacobs are delighted to have been the technical consultant on the Low Carbon Concrete initiative at Heathrow since its inception in 2018. Today’s trial is an exciting milestone in the development of lower carbon infrastructure solutions at the airport. It is the culmination of four years of research and planning towards these initial trials which will form the foundation of further work exploring other lower carbon products and materials. Testing the materials in a range of airport infrastructure applications, not just runway and taxiway pavements, allows us to maximise the opportunity to reduce embedded carbon in a wide variety of concrete types. Building on the success of today, we look forward to upscaling to usage in airfield projects being delivered by Ferrovial Construction, Dyer & Butler and other major programme partners across the airport.”ADVERTISEMENTMark Hill, UK National Sales Manager, Ecocem said: “Our technical solutions have long helped large scale infrastructure projects to reduce carbon emissions across Europe. Having the opportunity to partner with Heathrow airport on a project with huge potential in the UK and for the aviation sector is a testament to the innovation of our products and team. We look forward to working with Heathrow and our other partners to begin this trial.”
    Richard Kershaw, Technical Manager at Cemex said: “Cemex is renowned across the construction industry for its commitment to providing customers with more sustainable concrete solutions. We were the first supplier in the UK to launch a net-zero concrete product, making us ideally situated to support Heathrow with their lower carbon concrete trial. We hope this trial will prove successful and demonstrate to the aviation sector the opportunities available to cut emissions during their development projects.”
    Simon Wright, Regional Manager at Dyer & Butler, said: “As a trusted partner to Heathrow, we’re proud to be collaborating on this project to pioneer carbon reduction in the aviation industry. Our technical delivery team is excited to be involved in delivering this emerging technology. Dyer & Butler is committed to helping Heathrow work towards its net-zero targets on this, and future innovations.”
    Juan Pablo Perez, UK Airports & Civils Director, Ferrovial Construction said: “Our strategy at Ferrovial Construction is to deliver low carbon concrete solutions across our different projects worldwide. As part of our UK project portfolio, we are actively working with Heathrow, Jacobs and Cemex to achieve a low CO2e concrete mix. During the previous Heathrow framework (Q6), we achieved a reduction on carbon emissions in PQ mixes. We have taken that progress and development and are driving further reduction at H7 by exploring and trialling new technologies. As the first company at Heathrow to gain PAS2080 certification for Carbon Management, we have been able to deliver projects with the lowest Pavement Quality Concrete CO2e compliant with the high standard specification at the airport. We are excited to continue working with Heathrow, Jacobs and Cemex to drive the sustainable concrete development agenda in full support of Heathrow 2.0.”


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    The Newest, Independent, Luxury Glamping Sites Across the UK

    Unique hideaways welcome five new luxury, independent glampsites across the UK, into their one-of-a-kind collection. From a dog-friendly clifftop cabin in Devon to a shepherd’s hut in a walled garden on the edge of the Peak District, in the past month, Unique hideaways have welcomed a whole array of dream-worthy places to stay to their bespoke collection.
    The Nest- Devon
    Say hello to paradise. Perched atop a cliff and nestled amongst lush green trees, this heavenly cabin with dazzling sea views is sure to light a sense of adventure within you. The interiors are lavish, the view is awe-inspiring and the location is quite simply out of this world. Welcoming dogs, this hidden haven is perfect for a weekend escape to the seaside, while offering complete privacy and a sense of serenity from the bustling world outside.Secret Garden Escape- Staffordshire

    Perched within a beautiful walled garden, this majestic hut has a magical wood-fired hot tub and delicious pizza oven. Just a stone’s throw from the dramatic landscape of the Peak District National Park, this pocket of paradise is perfect for adventure dreamers, seeking a retreat off the well-worn path.ADVERTISEMENTLazydays Hideaway- Isle of Wight
    How does island life sound to you? This gorgeous family-sized yurt is idyllic for a getaway with the ones you love most. The sea view is sparkling, the interiors are sumptuous and the outdoor bathtub offers a little bit of luxury for your stay in nature. It’s time for an adventure with all the family and we’ve found the perfect hideaway for doing just that…
    Vista Paris- Cornwall
    Cosy interiors, spellbinding views and dream-worthy moments exist at our upcycled, handcrafted haven in the Cornish countryside. From the bubbling hot tub to the central location for exploring the very best that Cornwall has to offer, this stunning hideaway makes for the perfect last-minute getaway to this special corner of the UK.

    Matilda- Sussex
    This cute cabin offers you a dose of escapism. With folklore tales, a vibrant colour palette and rustic features, this quirky glamping abode is just the spot to call home for a little while. Nestled in the blissful East Sussex countryside, there’s so much to explore nearby that you’ll be wishing to return time and time again.

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