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It’s Bar-B-Q party time! – Urban’s Barbecue at Dusit Thani Abu Dhabi

It’s Bar-B-Q party time! – Urban’s Barbecue at Dusit Thani Abu Dhabi

It’s Bar-B-Q party time!

As committing to its promotion that “DUSIT THANI ABU DHABI BRINGS A LITTLE SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE THIS AUTUMN”. The Thai hospitality once again hit the mark bringing best of the tastes from different cuisines under one roof. Although what’s to be notably commended is their effort to gain the diners attention by bringing the “best quality with reasonable price” this autumn, reflecting specially in this particular theme offering we have reviewed.

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We were privileged to be invited to the exclusive preview of their very first Urban’s Barbecue last Monday, at Urban Kitchen. Experiencing the event first hand was indeed a pleasure as we found this package a complete steal in this value.

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It brought together the finest taste and the flavors of Middle Eastern, Turkish and Tandoori BBQ specialties, you can actually taste all that in just AED 129/- net per person including soft beverage, every Monday and Wednesday from 19:00 to 22:30hrs.

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Chef Aiham, Chef Bulent and Chef Bede have introduced the authentic flavors from each region with their very own recipes that have been passed down over generations. The set-up and spread of dishes was dynamic. We loved their tandoori BBQ items, Adana Kebabs, Paneer Tikka and Vegetable Tandoori. Hariyali Kabab with green marinade was also a must-try item.

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We loved the aroma and tenderness of tandoori items and how they were prepared fresh over live counters. Middle Eastern menu items gained a lot of my attention that day. We have tasted Fish Magli with Harissa sauce and Tikka Marinated Sea bass wrapped in spinach leaf and it was delicious. Ispanakli Yumurta (Eggs with spinach and onion) and Couscous Bil Khudar (Marrakesh classic taste) were made with full dedication and was deliciously tasty.

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In desserts it was a grand affair and we tasted vast variety and sweetness, from Muhalabyia to Halawa Bil jiben and from Znood Alsitt, Baloryia Pista to Katayef. Opera cake was another great find in their desserts menu. You may conclude on assorted Indian Sweets or warm Umm Ali.

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All and all it was a great value treat that every individual should try. Don’t forget to bring along your friends and family as the fun are always doubled when shared with the close ones.

Do comment below on what you think of Urban’s Barbecue themed buffet at Dusit Thani Abu Dhabi.

For reservations or more information on Dusit Thani Abu Dhabi’s food and beverage promotions, please contact +971 (2) 698 8137 or email: reservation.table@dusit.com.

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City Walk – SHINE BRIGHT LIKE A DIAMOND- GALA DINNER 2015 @Westin Abudhabi

City Walk – SHINE BRIGHT LIKE A DIAMOND- GALA DINNER 2015 @Westin Abudhabi

SHINE BRIGHT LIKE A DIAMOND- GALA DINNER 2015

The 2015 Gala Dinner themed ‘Shine bright like a diamond ’ in association with “Ladies Who Lunch ” held on September 4th was indeed a glam affair along with a noble cause, the attendees were individuals, groups including corporate businesses and executives throughout Abu Dhabi, local council and Government officials supporting the event through attendance and/or sponsorship.

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Some highlights of the evening were

• Entertainment and Music

• Silent Auction and Raffles with exciting prizes to be won

•Red carpet and photography opportunities

•Entrée and welcome address

•Main course and ongoing Entertainment – live performances

•Live charity auction

•DJ until late

UNICEF in Action with WASH Project:

PROVIDING CLEAN DRINKING WATER AND PROPER SANITATION FACILITIES FOR CHILDREN AND FAMILIES ACROSS AFRICA AND THE MIDDLE EAST.

As we are aware that dirty water, poor sanitation, and unhygienic practices cause millions of children to suffer needlessly from disease. Despite being preventable, water and sanitation related diseases remain one of the most significant child health problems worldwide. Almost 750 million people lack access to safe drinking water and an estimated 2.5 billion people lack access to proper sanitation facilities.

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UNICEF works in more than 100 countries around the world to improve water supplies and sanitation facilities in schools and communities, and to promote safe hygiene practices. In emergency situations, UNICEF also provides urgent relief to communities and nations threatened by disrupted water supplies and disease.

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In line to the great initiative this Charity Gala Dinner supported “Road To Awareness”, which is a worldwide fundraising initiative taken by Starwood Hotels & Resorts to support the underprivileged children by means of UNICEF. This year, the money raised will also support with much-needed fund to UNICEF Wash project across Middle East and Africa providing clean drinking water. The Middle East and North Africa is the most water-scarce region in the world, and two out of five people without access to safe drinking water live in Africa.

Venue:

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The Grand Ballroom of The Westin Abu Dhabi Golf Resort & Spa was decked up all as per the Diamond theme, decor was indeed stunning.

A total of AED 164,000 was raised from the charity dinner last year. The event this year hopefully will manager to contribute even more.

Food:

Four course all UK Cold fish n’ chips menu with drinks was offered to the guests.

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DSC_0234What comes to the table indeed has marked the first finest impression on the guests it was Scottish Salmon halibut smoked with soft radish jelly, and mushy peas form. Where the dish kept all its softness it did not disappoint us in it’s crunchy element. It was served with Vegetable Chip and made a perfect entrée’.

Then arrive the Roast Irish beef , the main along with yorkshire pudding with ‘bangers’ onion gravy and root veggies.

We thoroughly enjoyed the dessert which is sticky toffee pudding, with stilton crumble and apple cider sorbet, its divine and was the highlight of whole menu.

Last but not the least was assorted cheese platter with crackers and jams, it came late where all guests were busy in bidding and auction however we were so full that we dint opt for it.

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The Charity Gala Dinner turned our to be a memorable night for all those attended being one of a kind event. The night surely has a lot of surprises and wow moments. Funds raised by guests and employees at Starwood Hotels & Resorts will be used to help children wherever the need is greatest.

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There was also an exclusive Gala Dinner and room package including Breakfast at a great price to facilitate the participation by the venue host.

 
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Posted by on September 13, 2015 in Events, hotels, OUT AND ABOUT, PLACES

 

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Carluccio’s at YAS Mall – Win Meal Voucher worth 200 dhs #ItalianCuisineCelebrationonMahiBlog

Carluccio’s at YAS Mall – Win Meal Voucher worth 200 dhs #ItalianCuisineCelebrationonMahiBlog


Congratulations, And the winner is:

1) OMAR SAMI

– Thanks for sharing a lot – Please send us your full name and contact details on mahiblog.ae@gmail.com within 2 days to claim your prize. Incase of failure another winner will be chose.

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Carluccio’s at Yas Mall:

Those who are following my blog are already aware of my love for this brand. I once read an interview of Founder “ANTONIO CARLUCCIO” where he has mentioned that Olive oil, flour, tomatoes and basil are the ingredients you can’t live without; yes we are talking about 78-year-old Italian chef and restaurateur himself who was in Abu Dhabi last year to open Carluccio’s in Yas Mall – his third restaurant in the capital. Having about 100 restaurants around the world, he shows no signs of slowing down, and his great concept of love for Italian Cuisine is beautifully cascaded to the recipes at Carluccio’s restaurant menu.

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Super Gorgeous and our Ultimate Favorite Antipasti Mixed Board, it has each element of our liking ranging from home-baked Focaccia bread to roasted bell pepper with basil pesto.

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Well, apart from covering their FESTA DELLA PIZZA offerings and tasting from the best pizza festival in town, we did taste their main menu items too, and this time in a different location i-e @ YAS Mall. It is quite a big and spacious venue. In the evening, Carluccio’s welcomes those who are looking for a more relaxed dining experience. Carluccio’s deli here is unrivalled – offering a scrumptious selection of fresh meats, cheese, salads, olives, tarts and baked food items, in addition to a range of take-away dishes, they even sell these handy gadget so you can make similar dishes at home! In short YAS Mall Carluccio’s is not just a food outlet but it is a food shop that offers a range of specially imported products from Italy to give it the authentic taste of Italy to this region.

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I must say we had found our spot for comfort food that goes to our very heart. Our visit was memorable; we have been well greeted by the branch supervisor. Kids were well entertained with a customized kid’s pack they offer having a number of fun activities for kids aside from coloring too, I found myself well engross while they were solving the puzzle mysteries.

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Starters were best to name few were Tomato, Pesto & Garlic Breads. We tried on our host’s recommendation their Ravioli and it is just divine, so full of flavors and the tiny pouches will do the magic mix in your mouth where sauce is so carefully coordinated with soft home-made ravioli which is filled with tender spinach and cheese giving the classic breakdown of each ingredients, it’s just absolute harmony. Being served in a traditional way with butter it kept it’s true essence.

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LAGAGNA is also up there in this same category, baked at its perfection simply must-try item on the menu. My kids have thoroughly enjoyed the dish.DSC_0067

Hubby ordered Lamb Shank which is basically slowly braised lamb shank with herbs and vegetable, served with rosemary and mashed potatoes. Meat was well done and juicy at the same time the aroma of braised lamp just satisfies your taste buds and you will fall in love with this dish.  Uncomplicated ingredients, basic taste! It can even cater to my craving for lamb roast incase I am up for big challenges next time.

Kids enjoyed the very simple and basic Penne Pasta with pink sauce, which is too good and accurate to the taste and liking for the kids. The fact that the staff gave extra attention while taking your order you can actually customize your dish by requesting to add on or reduce the selected ingredients.

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As for the Desserts, they have a lovely selection. We tried 3 in total, 2 from the new range and one regular.

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CASSATA which is Semifreddo Sicilian Dessert with Chocolate pieces (I hardly felt any in mine), pistaccio ice-cream and candied fruits (as it’s comparatively hard to chew dint give me much of my dreamtime while enjoying this dessert.)

 

CHERRY SUNDAE: Being a die-hard fan of cherries I had no reasons not to fall in love with this awesome treat, very well proportionate dessert made by simple amalgamation of Italian Amarena Cherries and Vanilla Ice-cream and the syrup was there to balance the sweet ratio too. Love it! DSC_0068

Last but not the least Chocolate Fondente a warm chocolate pudding served with Ice cream. It was a chocolate lovers dream. Thick, chocolaty goodness all over with a layer of ice-cream. If you want a drinking chocolate version, try the Ciccoletta fiorentina.

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WOW Factor:

  • On weekend they are serving new Nutella e Banana so go for it!
  • If you looking for real taste of Italy at home their colorful cornucopia of fantastic fresh food, Keep sake & store cupboard items and gifts you should definitely pass by their deli.
  • Their fondants are mind blowing – pure choco lovers, welcome.

Buon Appetito!

I loved the romantic ambiance and an extended space where you can enjoy with your loved ones or close group of friends for a special dine-outs. There is even possibility to get variety without giving up on your Italian cravings. Categorically worth next visit, maybe even after to try some more Gnocchi next time 😉 I would rate my overall liking for Carluccio’s 4.6 on 5. And it can take mouth-watering 5 for just deli itself as it’s too good to ignore.

Find more info on their FB page here or go to their Website.

GIVEAWAY/ COMPETITION: 

Mahi Blog and Carluccio’s have teamed up to offer Mahi Blog readers “Gift meal Voucher worth AED 200” to be used at any Carluccio’s outlet across UAE

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For your chance to win simply do the following:

1- Answer the following question in comments; Name any one of the PIZZA offering at Carluccio’s during FESTA DELLA PIZZA?

2- Subscribe (via email id) on Mahi BlogShare this post on social widgets. (Use buttons below of FB, Twitter, IG etc)

3- Like, Follow, Share us on following:

To win you must do all the above steps. Winners will be announced on September 10th, 2015.  All UAE fans can take part.

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Disclaimer & Notes: A huge Thank you to CARLUCCIO’S Management, Andjelka Pavlovic and our host staff at restaurant. We were guests there however it did not influence our thoughts and reviews, all opinions content are our own. Pictures are owned by Mahi Blog. You can not use any pics without prior permission.

 
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Posted by on September 7, 2015 in OUT AND ABOUT, PLACES, Restaurants

 

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“Festa Della Pizza” Celebration at Eastern Mangroves Carluccio’s – Reviewed

“Festa Della Pizza” Celebration at Eastern Mangroves Carluccio’s – Reviewed

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Carluccio’s is the highly praised Italian cafe renowned for bringing authentic and conventional Italian cooking and ingredients to families in a comforting and friendly environment. Carluccio’s open kitchens are operated by qualified chefs who create all the food in-house including pastas and breads. It offers great worth for cash with the whole lot from scrumptious morning breakfasts and exclusive blends of coffees through to light meals and lunches. Carluccio’s deli is the food shop offers a range of specially imported products from Italy to give the authentic taste of Italy to this region. It is well-known for its pastas, pizzas, classic Italian desserts, fresh salads, and antipasti to name a few.

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Festa Della Pizza Celebration at Carluccio’s

Festa Della Pizza Festival 

Nothing says Italy quite like its food, and nothing says Italian food like pizza. Sharing its passion and expertise for the Italian speciality; Carluccio’s is hosting a two-month long celebration of all things pizza. Started from 26th July and it will go till end of September, Festa Della Pizza will showcase an array of limited edition sweet and savory pizzas alongside interactive kids’ pizza making classes. In addition, Carluccio’s food shops will feature a special display of chilli oils and chilli based products, the ideal accompaniment for pizza at home. You can choose from Sweet or Savoury Choices.

Coverage of Festa Della Pizza at Eatern Mangroves Carluccio’s

DSC_0306To cover the grand festival we have been invited via PRCo and been warmly hosted and greeted by the generous staff at Eastern Mangroves Outlet of Carluccio’s. Venue is cozy and has an amazing view of mangroves and stretched out sea full of boats, Eastern Mangroves is also home to other water sports activities hence attract a lot of goers and Italian food lovers which simple can’t miss this branch of Carluccio’s due to aroma of baked pasta and pizza & smell coming from their kitchen. Restaurant has fining area covered inside and outside on terrace as well, in good weather you can sit outside and enjoy the breezy atmosphere, however we preferred inside in the prevailing temperatures in Capital and were guided via staff to a warm corner with a glass window for an outside view.

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Bowl of Olives

I am a big fan of Carluccio’s and have visited so many branches by now and a big lover of their bread and Olives hence it was must to try the same before we roll on to festival tasting and we enjoyed BOWL OF OLIVES this time. Being a thin crust pizza lover, it’s a treat to find they are serving authentic Roman-style pizzas with perfectly charred crusts, We tried Anatra e Fichi, Calzone Ortolana and Granchio e Gamberi.

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Anatra e Fici

First one consist of tomato, mozzarella, shredded duck confit (You may ask staff to replace with chicken), fresh figs, rocket salad, parmesan shavings and aged balsamic vinegar which has very empowering taste in a good way and the figs added that extra citrus taste to this highly recommended pizza from the festival offerings.

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Granchio e Gamberi was a treat for seafood lover

The second one Calzone Ortolana was basically a folded pizza will balsamic roasted vegetables, goats’ cheese, mozzarella and black olives and has this incredible softness of combination cheese they topped it with and the balsamic roasted veggies give you a great crunch and taste at the same time.

Meanwhile, seafood fans will appreciate the Granchio e Gamberi, topped with crab meat, shrimps, mozzarella, grated zucchini, red chilli, basil and lemon oil, though we are not huge fan of seafood but this pizza is very flavoursome and did gain few interest point on our tastemeter.

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Porcini e Tartufo is one unique in range too

It you have Sweet tooth you may indulge in one of the unique dessert pizzas been offered at FESTA DELLA PIZZA Treat; served on a crispy golden base, they are the perfect way to finish a meal. You can try the fruity Passione e Amarena topped with mascarpone passion fruit cream and Italian Amarena “Fabbri” cherries or the classic Nutella e Banana with Italian Nutella and sliced banana. My kids thoroughly enjoyed their nutella banana edition and it actually made them charged to even run for a small walk around mangroves.

Nutella e Banana Passione e Amarena

Apart from Festival Offerings we even tried our all time favorite antipasti mixed board. There is nothing to complaint about this extra gorgeous complete board which has each element of our liking ranging from home-baked Focaccia bread to roasted bell pepper with basil pesto.

I also ordered Beef Gnocchi, which truly impressed us this time with slowly cooked pulled beef and potatoes dumpling, rosemary flavor added to its taste.

I tried Cheese cake with Latte Coffee and finished off my meal in a delightful way.

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Oils and other products range at Deli:

Well if you would love to carry what you tasted in the offerings for number of months, here is a charm, as this festival is running for a certain time however you may purchase the hot stuff which goes into taste over these pizza.

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Yes we are talking about sauces and special infused oils. If you are looking to add a little heat to your menu can head to Carluccio’s famous deli, which will be showcasing a selection of chilli oils and chilli based products throughout the festival. Made from quality Italian olives and infused with chillies dried under the Calabrian sun, chilli oil is endlessly useful in the kitchen and perfectly complements pizza as well as pasta, salads and any other dishes that require a kick. Choose between the traditional chilli oil and chilli and garlic oil, whilst the Tre Oli set makes a lovely gift for any keen cook. In keeping with the fiery theme, a selection of chilli salsa, pesto and pasta will also be available for rustling up impressive suppers for friends and family at home. They are also been offered at much reasonable price and in some cases bundle offer.

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Pizza Master Classes for Kids

In case If you have mini chefs in the making like mine 2, Carluccio’s also offers fun and hands-on pizza master classes for kids, I can recall the memories when my kids had attended the same few months back and guess what they have same been offered throughput the festival; Led by an expert chef, little ones can get messy whilst kneading, baking and decorating before sitting down to enjoy their creations. You may contact your nearest Carluccio’s for dates and timings.pizza class

Follow Carluccio’s on Facebook and Twitter for more information on Festa Della Pizza.

Indeed it’s a great chance where pizza lovers will discover a range of inspired flavor combinations throughout the festival, visit with friends to enjoy a variety in the menu without managing to dilute the running italian theme too.  This festival is available at restaurants in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

Mahi Blog loved exploring the festival at Carluccio’s and rate the Fiesta offering 4.5 out of 5 on our tastemeter.

KEEP CALM AND EAT ITALIAN – ITALIAN TO GO…

Carluccio's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

 
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Posted by on September 2, 2015 in Events, OUT AND ABOUT, PLACES, Restaurants

 

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Westin AD ‘Super Camp’ Review – Time well spent for Kids.

Westin AD ‘Super Camp’ Review – Time well spent for Kids.

Good news: For New excitement and more #giveaways keep following Mahi blog and our FB, IG and Twitter pages

THE WESTIN SUPER CAMP

In the past many expat families used the long summer break to escape the heat and spend two months in cooler climes visiting friends and family.  However, today more and more families have both parents working like my case, which limits the amount of time we can spend away from UAE to back home in our countries. But on other hand summer in the sand and dunes emirates can be fairly tricky at times; how do I entertain my full of life & handful (mashaAllah) kids, that are storming the house as not much of street / outdoor activities due to hot climate in UAE!

Well, perhaps a summer camp will be an unlikely break for both of them communally and emotionally. As a trend here in UAE, majority of children in Dubai soon after saying goodbye to exams say hello to summer holidays! Likewise I wanted to Plan my family’s best summer yet with impressive summer camps for kids in and near our very own residence!

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The Westin Super Camp for Kids is a great venture from the 19th July to 27th August, and designed to promote the pillars of Westin: Eat Well, Move Well and Play Well. Indeed my kids really had an amazing time over the weeks enjoying the camp, they did a lot of fun activities and had completely enjoyed the fun-filled week. They loved their swimming sessions especially which was supervised by professional staff Sofia and her team. She an amazing trainer and really helped strengthening the breath exercises and swim coaching in kids.

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All of the activities have been selected carefully with the ultimate focus of Feel Well, allowing kids that come to the camp to be nurtured both physically and emotionally, as well as with greater awareness of self and of well-being. It’s lovely to see them enjoying their swimming hours, golf talents as well as making their fort and camps in the free play hours, what I love personally is how my boy (Wisam) mingled with the group of kids, interacted well and been an active candidate in all the activities, who is generally appear to be a reserved one when and being along with the masses.

On another note it’s great to know how well my daughter Misha is holding on to her breath while exercising her control activities in swimming classes.

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WOW Factors:

  • I love the fact how the instructor and supervisors are giving individual attention to each kid and trying to focus on their fear and capabilities bringing out the best in them.

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  • To expand the range of activities they have made partnerships with the Abu Dhabi Golf Club and the Fit’n’Flex Gym.
  • What made it extra special for my daughter is her Birthday celebration at the camp, where they have made special arrangements along with big piñata and a delicious birthday cake. She loved the birthday surprise along with colorful balloons and a very fancy birthday candle flower.

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  • Interaction and bonding between Camp Coach“Ana Rita” and kids is indeed remarkable, She is a professional staff who takes care of kids making sure to nourish their intellectual and physical training and bring so much diversity to the schedule of the camp to make it interesting and fun-loving for the kids. It in indeed a great source on interest for kids when they can well explained and enjoy their summer camp activities at their fullest and I strongly believe for that the credit goes to Rita and her team for pulling such a successful Super Camp at Westin Abu Dhabi, which we will definitely recommend to all parents out there.
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Ever-smiling & devoted coach ‘Ano Rita’ with Misha ❤

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Timings are from Sunday to Thursday (9am to 2pm, Early Drop Off and Late Pick Up available) .

The fun and memories are as to cherish for the life time for my kids. My daughter has taken the best of birthday and playdate memories from Westin and talks about it each day. All in all it was great experience. My 2 munchkins simply loved escaping to Westin cool super camp, where they learnt everything from how to decorate their own perfect desserts to swimming and diving. So whether your child’s passion is in the sports or arts there will be the opportunity (lessons of Golf, Swimming, Dance and Yoga, Cooking as SuperChefs etc) for them to be busy and entertained throughout the whole summer holidays here in UAE at Westin Super Camp.

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Cupcakes / Muffins decor was one of the favorite activity for kids in Super Camp

The reflection of wellness and Food quality is also visible in their Spa facility and F&B related to property. Click to see our review of ” Heavenly Spa”  “SACCI” & “FAIRWAYS”.

unnamedPrice: Weekly package is AED 750 and for a Daily package AED 170, lunch included

Early Drop Off (AED 30) and Late Pick Up (AED 20) of 30 min available

Dates: 19th July to 27th August 2015

Mahi Blog would rate it 4.8 out of 5 !

You may directly land onto their direct page for Super CAMP here.

For more details on ‘Westin Abu Dhabi’ or any other packages, please visit their website

Disclaimer & Notes: A huge Thank you to The Westin Abu Dhabi Management, Ana Rita and all the instructors in different activities at Super Camp . Please note that above thoughts and review, and opinions content are our own. You can not use any pics without prior permission. We used the content with prior permission from Westin Abu Dhabi.

 

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HEAVENLY SPA REVIEW – Westin Abu Dhabi

HEAVENLY SPA REVIEW – Westin Abu Dhabi

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                                  A Day at Spa

I have enjoyed the August Specials at Heavenly spa.

It was indeed very rejuvenating and revitalizing not just for my body but also for my mind. I have experienced this special Heavenly Spa offer, where you may choose any two of the below treatments for AED380 or three treatments for AED480

  1. 30 minute back, neck and shoulder massage
  2. 30 minute rehydrating booster facial
  3. 30 minute silky smooth scrub
  4. 30 minute body waxing
  5. 1 pool day pass

I have chosen from 1-3.

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This was my very first visit to the Heavenly Spa at WESTIN Abu Dhabi. The Heavenly Spa, nestling within the lush gardens of the resort’s expansive grounds, brings together refined, natural materials and sleek modern textures to create an organic, luxurious and stylish setting for sublime serenity. While entering the deluxe alley instantly alleviate my thoughts about wellness.

The wooden inspired brown and pallid walls & interiors feels very soothing.

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Staff at the reception warmly greeted and are very hospitable throughout my session.

All my treatments are taken care of very well by a well qualified and professional therapist ‘Anna”, from Poland, who has thoroughly discussed my consent form and information which I have provided with in, to know best about my skin and what I am looking for particularly. She has given me some great advice over how to keep my body and skin hydrated and some smart and quick fix-ups for me face freshness and replenish.

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Couple’s treatment Room

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Lovely Wall Art in each treatment room is a treat to an eye !

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Anna has guided me towards my treatment room and explained me whole procedure, she ensure that those few hours I have spent at the Heavenly Spa is all about me. My treatment started off with smooth scrub followed by a back, neck and shoulder massage i-e one good break down of lactic acids and the flushing out process which continued for a day or 2.

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Cleanliness and Hygiene wise Westin standards are at peak. They take care of your well-being and comfort so well that you will just leave the venue in completely good spirit. They have a separate ladies and men area where you may get freshen up and has steam room facility too with showers conveniently locate at both sides of it. Accessibility to lockers and towels in much easier while you may get all basic requirements ranging from toiletries to hair dryer and straighten Iron fitted in the area in front of full-sized mirror.

You can enjoy the invigorating power of their signature techniques in one of six treatment rooms.

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Treatment rooms are wide and open with proper lighting and in-room showers with all the complimentary toiletries are available, along with a bath robe and disposable . I have been asked to choose an inspiration stone to be placed under my head rest from HOPE, LOVE & GRATITUDE. I stick to the last one and felt the same vibes throughout.  She then asked me which massage oil I would like. Three special blends have been created for Westin Experience. They are to renew, rejuvenate and to refresh.

It was indeed a refreshing treatment and later I spent some time in relaxing area with ample of natural light and refreshment, powered by SuperFood Fx program, another well-being area and touch by Westin. To re-gain your energy they provide you with best sources food of Iron, Potassium and Vitamin along with Vitamin C infused water to refresh you ever after a long treatment.

The reflection of wellness and Food quality is always visible in F&B related to property. Click to see our review of “SACCI” & “FAIRWAYS”.

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All in all it was great sense of relaxation full of well-being along with professional services and tranquil environment. I would recommend all my friends to experience them, after all in such a busy day-to-day experience we should give other body and soul that extra pampering and care which it indeed deserve, Go on you will surely love it as I do.

Mahi Blog would rate it 4.6 out of 5 !

For more details on ‘The Heavenly Spa’ or any other packages, please visit their website

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Posted by on August 18, 2015 in OUT AND ABOUT, PLACES, Retreat

 

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Iftar Review – “Layali al Baraka” at Jumeirah at Etihad Towers – #WIN Iftar Buffet for 2! (INSTANT GIVEAWAY)

Iftar Review – “Layali al Baraka” at Jumeirah at Etihad Towers – #WIN Iftar Buffet for 2! (INSTANT GIVEAWAY)

IFTAR AT “LAYALI AL BARAKA”

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Like each year Jumeirah at Etihad Towers have their special set-up of Ramadan “Layali al Baraka” in their diversified and multipurpose venue (Mezzoon Pre Function Area). You can Experience the joy of the season with friends and family in the lavishly decorated venue and  immerse yourself in the Ramadan spirit with your family and friends

It is predominantly Arabic food however non-Arabic dishes are also there and been chosen carefully as been best in the menu and also strike a great balance to par the taste of Ramadan menu. Jalab, Karkadh, Laban, Kamar Al Deen & Erk Sous all of these varieties of Ramadan Drinks are available however if you wish you may order for the soft drinks and fresh juices chargeable out of the Ramadan buffet menu.

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We loved the set-up of house Water, some juices, Nuts & Dates available on your table pre-arrival; as it’s much convenient you don’t have to rush to the main food area to find the glasses for juices or to start munch-in soon as you break the fast.

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This might be our last outdoor Iftar this  Ramadan in UAE, but we can’t get enough of our very favorite “Lentil Soup” with Lemon and Zaatar Crouton; oh yes the infusion of Zaatar added that extra zest to this great creation. There was soup of the day also however it’s was not been able to take our attention away from lentil one!

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Another reason I love food at Jumeirah at Etihad Towers is their Condiments; we loved the fact how keen observation and special care they gave it to the small portion of menu; we had noticed the same at our previous review of “ROSEWATER”. Cornichons, shaved Parmesan and marinated Mushroom with grilled Eggplants were tasty.

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There is a huge salad bar and of compound salad having Lollo Rosso and Oak leaves with complete range of dressings, balsamic being the best. We also loved Baba Ganoush, Mohamara and Warak Enab, in Cold Mezzah section.

We noticed a large presence of non-Arabs diners too at their Iftar Buffet. How they cater to that in menu, well to mention Thai Green Chicken Curry with Basil and Stir fried Vegetable Rice were indeed top-notch Asian items in “Layali al Baraka” menu and we were fond of it.

To keep a mix they had few western dishes on menu too; Mediterranean Style baked Mahi Mahi, Tomato, Grilled Chicken Breast with creamy Mushroom Sauce, Potato Gratin with Celeriac and Buttered Peas with Lettuce and Shallots. On a side Indian note their Tandoori Jhinga is a must-try.

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Live station for Churros preparation. it was divine..

WOW Factor:

Guess what we found at Hot Mezzah Chicken Wings & Chicken Liver Pomegranate jus which was very well done and juicy too. Ouzi with Oriental Rice kept its soul along with Emirati Station having Lamb Harris, Vegetables Salona and Lamb Majbous.

The traditional Oud player sets a soothing ambience with his notations and you will enjoy the whole ambiance even louder.

Main Course consist of Arabic Mixed Grill (Shish Taouk, Lamb Kebab, Kofta Kebab), Laban Emmo, Dajaj Bel Batata (it has become our favorite potatoe dish now)

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Other main courses includes Samak Makli with Tarator sauce, the Kousa Mahshi (very simple in taste unlike its name), Yaknet Bazella with Lamb Stew and very popular Vermicelli Rice, very appetizing.

  • There is large variety of Arabic Sweets to name what we tasted were Koulaj, Kataif Ashta with nuts, Cheese Halwa, Aysh al Saraya and of course Umm Ali along with Tangy Lemon Meringue Tart and yummy Red Velvet sliced Cake.
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Tamar Hindi being served via Traditional Dallah Style.

Live station of Kunafa was also in progress. We rate it 4.5 out of 5 for being an exquisite buffet of regional delights including live cooking stations. From sumptuous seafood grills to a live Saj station and customary Ramadan beverages served with the traditional dallah, each appetising dish will enchant your palate.

In the spirit of the Holy Month of Ramadan, they will be donating AED 2, for every person attending their Iftar, to Emirates Red Crescent in support of children in need.

Location: Podium Level 4
Timings: As per Iftar timings
Price: AED 175* per person

For more information or reservations, please contact us:

FB, Twitter , IG

Telephone: +971 2 811 5666
Email:  JADrestaurants@jumeirah.com

GIVEAWAY/ COMPETITION: 

Mahi Blog and Jumeirah at Etihad Towers have teamed up to offer Mahi Blog readers“Iftar Buffet Voucher for 2”

How to win:

For your chance to win simply do the following:

1- Answer the following question in comments; Name any one of the restaurants at Jumeirah at Etihad Towers?

2- Subscribe (via email id) on Mahi BlogShare this post on social widgets. (Use buttons below of FB, Twitter, IG etc)

3- Like, Follow, Share us on following:

To win you must do all the above steps. Winners will be announced on July 14th, 2015.  All UAE fans can take part.

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Disclaimer & Notes: A huge Thank you to Jumeirah at Etihad Towers Management, Maria our lovely host staff at restaurant. We were guests there however it did not influence our thoughts and reviews, all opinions content are our own. You can not use any pics without prior permission.

 

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Iftar Review: Horizon-Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana+MEGA Contest #WIN

Iftar Review: Horizon-Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana+MEGA Contest #WIN

Marina , Mustafa & rpfbcrec you are the winners. Please send your contact details to mahiblog.ae@gmail.com asap. As the voucher is just valid till end of ramadan. If you won’t send email within today another winner will be chosen tomorrow.

CONGRATULATIONS.

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It was a great pleasure accepting a Ramadan invite for Iftar from “Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana” at Horizon Restaurant and it was indeed a great experience. The Iftar Buffet setting at Horizon is not clustered, I like the idea that they set-up the main course counters at 3 locations, catering to the needs of diners who are spread-out till their lobby.

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First being the starter or mezze (Hot & Cold) sections which has an array of what looks like over 12-15 menu items to get the Iftar started. There is everything from salty pickles to baba ghanoush, mixed salads, Kibbeh , spinach fatayer, cheese sambusak etc. What tempted me most was Eggplant moussaka in Oriental and Poached Gulf prawns Smoked salmon in International.

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There is a soup and bread station (Oriental Pita was so good!). You can choose from a selection of lentil or clear chicken noodle soup. Also the Lamb ouzi with Oriental rice station is hidden beneath the staircase make sure to take a walk along the wide menu before fatoor (iftari)  so you would know where it’s placed.

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Before you get too full on soup, don’t forget to get your own Shawarma, made fresh at the counter.

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Syrian style Mix grill and falafel were prepared live along with the shawarma live station in the centre of the main dining chamber of Horizon. The chef is on hand to assist you with any menu choices that you might need to make and the junior chef will also assist you to pour in Tabouleh Rotana and Fattoush in bowls over the counters specifically made for these items.

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Oriental & International Cuisine Mix Balance was another strength of menu at Horizon in Khalidiya Palace which we enjoyed over other After reviews we did.

Harees Chicken / vermicelli rice (Emirati style) Arabic Lamb shank Fasoulya, Chicken Frikkeh (Jordanian style), Kibbeh Bil laban & Baby marrow and vine leaves with lamb chops were all at par, I couldn’t decide which tasted better as they were all made to perfection.  Seafood chili, Cumin roasted potato, Steamed vegetables & Ratatouille in International cuisine has kept a great balance. I loved Grilled sherry Fish with honey mustard sauce.

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Make sure you do not miss out on ‘the desserts counter’ as it is located at the end of the hallway. It has a large variety of desserts and was our favorite, you would find everything ranging from Arabic sweet (Um ali & Kunfa roll were tastiest) and a lovely cake selection I must say and the Blueberry panna cotta was to die for, our other favorites include Linzer Cake, lemon trifle in glass. Just in case you are not yet satisfies you can enjoy ice-creams in cone or cup which was equally enjoyed by kids and adults.

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WOW Factors:

  • I simply haven’t had taste such tastier Lebanese salad “Fattoush” ever before. It is so aromatic and crispy with croutons. The Chef “Abu Halab” will make it just right in front of your eyes and will mix and toss it and you won’t just stop tasting on it.

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  • The dates and nuts setting in the main lobby under giant Palm trees structure. Kudri Madeena and fresh red & yellow rotab was a treat to my taste buds.

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  • Traditional dishes “carving” was another highlight of their menu for Kebbe sajiyeh & Chicken mousakhan rolls.
  • The Ramadan Drinks and Assorted Juices been places in circles, those who are following my reads know my favorite Ramadan drink, Jelab Thamar! Yes and it was best I got in Khalidiya Palace.DSC_0068
  • The involvement of Chef in the whole Iftar Buffet along with the staff and management was something really impressed me as its being so interactive.

All in all the food  we tasted at Ramadan After Buffet at Horizon – Khalidiya Palace is succulent and delicious, full of essence and made us happy 🙂

For More information on Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana click these pages here: Facebook, Twitter, IG.

GIVEAWAY/ COMPETITION: (3 WINNERS)

Mahi Blog and Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana have teamed up to offer Mahi Blog readers “Three Iftar Buffet Vouchers for 2 at HORIZON

How to win:

For your chance to win simply do the following:20150706_172301_HDR

1- Answer the following question in comments; Name any one of the restaurants at Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana?

2- Subscribe (via email id) on Mahi BlogShare this post on social widgets. (Use buttons below of FB, Twitter, IG etc)

3- Like, Follow, Share us on following:

To win you must do all the above steps. Winners will be announced on July 9th, 2015.  All UAE fans can take part.

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Disclaimer & Notes: A huge Thank you to Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana Marketing Team & Management, Faten, Judy, aff at Horizon & Outlet Manager, Dhammika. We were guests there however it did not influence our thoughts and reviews, all opinions content are our own. You can not use any pics without prior permission.

 

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Here comes the Pizza – Grand Launch of Russo’s NY Pizzeria!

Here comes the Pizza – Grand Launch of Russo’s NY Pizzeria!

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“Mangia bene! “ [Eat well] -Chef Anthony Russo. The Russo’s Dalma Mall “Grand Launch” was a private event, as guests are welcomed by CEO himself along with Marketing team and during the event there is a free flow on Pizza and appetizers via attentive hostesses. You won’t miss the store at this location in mall because it is located right near the Cinemas. This restaurant displayed a Russo’s board at the entrance and there is a strong aroma indication to guide to further !

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Had an incredible time at the festive cooking demo at Russo’s by none other than the man himself, founder and Chef Anothony Russo. The variety and colors are so fresh and yummy. It can literally turn an adult into a child in a pizza world. Today, you can find Russo’s New York Pizzeria all around the world. Yet, it is no typical franchise. No matter which location it is, almost everything is made in-house, from the pizza dough to the gnocchi and mainly handpicked and exported from their sorted locations.

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All in all it was great evening I simple loved the menu of the night in Starters my favorite were Caprese Salad, Pomodora Brushetta and Fried Portobello Mushrooms. Of course you can’t beat their originals Cheese and Chicken Rustica Pizzas !! DSC_0392 DSC_0352 DSC_0342 DSC_0343 DSC_0345 IMG_20150610_193945 Lasagna Al forno was indeed a great touch and how can I not mention very tempting Panna Cotta & Tiramisu. I am not a huge fan of Risotto however did taste their Porcini one with drizzled Truffle Oil and it is indeed very delicious! DSC_0377 One could smell the oven baked pizza while you are just passing near cine royal on the same floor. I’m normally not a fan of the thin crust, but this is the right blend of crisp and juicy with each slice covered with fresh toppings. Russo’s is worth a visit. The quality of food and service definitely won’t disappoint! DSC_0400 DSC_0362 DSC_0340 DSC_0433 IMG_20150611_105124 Russo is the story of a chef with immense dreams and have done it in grace, someone who was able to take a winning perception and wrap up it in a way that, in the hands of the right people, can be replicated over and over again. Anthony Russo has developed one of the first New York-style pizzeria concept in Houston, after Mastering his family’s recipes for his own restaurants, he took the idea and started franchising it. That concept was Russo’s New York Pizzeria. I loved the opportunity to taste some of the finest Russo’s creation customized that day and to know about him and chat over some desserts in late evening on same day. We break it down our cluster conversation with him into below main Q & A: Where do you source your ingredients from? Some from Italy and some from US. What about the local market, do you think it’s readily available or is it the procedures and policy of the company/ management decision? It involves a lot of items about 60-70 and in most of the cases we usually bring it from abroad. You have a lot of Arab based and UAE restaurants? Do you adjust/alter your recipes  to meet the demand of the customers in this region? The recipes do not change much, except recipes where it’s pertaining to the nature of ingredients and meat (halal) to be replaced others which do not involve any such obligations remain same and as healthy and full of taste as I have inherited and created some hence It’s a family recipes which we are making for years. What sort of R&D is involved, as you have to make sure it shall be liked by the residents here and matches to their taste buds? Indeed. We want clients & foodies in every market to suit the liking for our food, whether locally or internationally, to enjoy their experience at Russo’s. A big part of that is integrating local gastronomy and ingredients into dishes. Luckily in case of UAE it’s quite Mediterranean and this is a plus for us and a lot of material like egg-plant, veggies  cheese and sauces are rich in such tastes and help us win over the hearts of locals and other nationalities in the region. DSC_0390 DSC_0386 DSC_0385 DSC_0381 What about the chefs at different outlets of Russo’s , are the only from particular region? No, they vary however all of them are being trained for one month to six weeks under an extensive program, even in some locations I’d come in to train them and show them how to do it. I teach them how to cook and carry on the family recipe, I won’t mind doing it as I love my family recipes and treasure them. I wanted to make sure when I handed it off to someone who pizza was going to taste really like New York-style pizza. We make sure that the recipes are ideal. That, no matter who maneuvers the restaurant, the food is going to taste the same as I would make it from our family recipe. What is the reason behind Russo’s being distinctive? It’s the ingredients that you use. Also the simplicity which goes in making this Italian cuisine, the beauty of compatibility and adaptability of its taste by different customs and regions. It has to be high-quality and you need to know what kind of flour to use, back home I pick all the ingredients from flour till veggies on my own. I use high-gluten flour with the highest protein. It’s milled in a certain part of Illinois. The flour, the cheese and the sauce is significant. DSC_0422 DSC_0411 How many branches in region? We have 6 units in total, and are planning to have 10 more in the coming year. However, in the next month we will be opening a branch in Riyadh. What is the biggest challenge you face here in this region? To maintain the quality, as I have been to some place here in UAE and it was really different from the US, in terms of quality, I found it that it is quite challenging to keep the same level of quality that we find in the US, although it is improved over the years, as you can find the best category of Parmesan over here due to export. We also have to bring in ingredients from abroad to maintain the quality of food and that is the only challenge we face. What is the biggest strength you have and what advice you want to give to my readers? My biggest strength is food off course, cause if not, we would not be successful. The only food advice I can give to your readers is if they require pizza and pasta, only go to russo’s 😉 Disclaimer & Notes: A huge Thank you to CEO, host Marketing team at Russo’s, Prime Hospitality, Mutaz (for coordination), charming Layal, Suzzane & most Importantly my favorite Chef Anthony RUSSO! from NY PizzeriaWe were guests there however it did not influence our thoughts and reviews, all opinions content are our own. You can not use any pics without prior permission.

 
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Posted by on June 28, 2015 in Events, OUT AND ABOUT, PLACES, Restaurants

 

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City Walk – Event Review: “Short+Sweet” theatre festival.

City Walk – Event Review: “Short+Sweet” theatre festival.

Abu Dhabi enjoyed its first taste of the international theatre festival ‘Short+Sweet’ this weekend, when a touring show of the festival’s 10-minute plays visited the capital as part of a day of theatre events at Abu Dhabi Theatre. The Short+Sweet festival has run successfully in Dubai for the last three years, and organisers hosted the theatre day to give locals a taste of the fun and energy involved in the event and to promote the idea of having a full Short+Sweet Abu Dhabi theatre festival in early 2016. The day began with an acting workshop on stage, a  playwriting workshop in the afternoon and a performance of ‘Short+Sweet – the Best of Short+Sweet Dubai’ showing some of the most successful, and funniest, 10-minute plays in the world.

HR Shereen Saifudeen, Beth Burrows, Taraash Mehrotra and Salman Qureshi in No 22, Shorter+Sweeter

Says Alex Broun, world-leading playwright and producer of Short+Sweet Dubai: “Short+Sweet has really helped to promote homegrown theatre talent in Dubai. Last February we had over 250 actors, writers and directors involved in staging 70, 10-minute plays and it really brought out the best from local theatre groups”. He continues “there is some incredible creative talent in Abu Dhabi, both Emirati and expatriate. We want to start a full festival of 10-minute plays here, Short+Sweet Abu Dhabi, to give local people a challenge and to enable them to collaborate across cultural divides”.

Short+Sweet currently runs across 23 cities, in seven different countries, although Dubai is currently the only Emirate to host it. The Shorter+Sweeter show, a touring production, hopes to tour the GCC and then Italy later in the year. Anyone who wants to get involved in Short+Sweet Abu Dhabi should contact alex@constellation.ae, at Dubai’s newest performing arts company Constellation.

 
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Posted by on June 1, 2015 in Events, OUT AND ABOUT, PLACES

 

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