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Events

Oman - The spirit of Arabia

BI WORLDWIDE's Head of Events Shaun Casey, tells us about his trip to Oman and how it could be the perfect destination for a unique corporate incentive event.

Shaun was excited when he accepted an invitation to travel to Oman with Mags Worldwide and Shangri-La Hotels. Shaun's previous experience of The Middle East was limited to Dubai and Abu Dhabi and whilst both destinations appeal to many of BI WORLDWIDE's clients as an incentive destination, Shaun was looking forward to exploring another part of The Middle East.

First impressions

The Sultanate of Oman is very different to Dubai and Abu Dhabi, with pristine beaches, spectacular mountains, canyons and wadis, world-class diving, dolphin watching and the chance to explore ancient forts and tombs. There are no skyscrapers, only low-rise white buildings and the landscape is truly breath-taking. Easy access to the Sultanate is provided by Omanair flying regularly from Heathrow and with the introduction of services from Manchester, the destination is within easy reach for the UK market.

I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of service. Our destination company, Zahara Tours had its own fleet of vehicles, professional drivers and experience in managing MICE programmes that would rival any of our business partners in other parts of the world.

Oman's variety of high quality hotels 

When I travel to a new destination, I’m interested in the level of investment being made by hoteliers and other business tourism services as well as understanding the vision from the national tourism office. What’s clear is that Oman has already attracted some high quality hotel properties offering a vast array of experiences for the MICE participant.

The Shangri-La in Muscat was a fabulous base for us to explore this unique destination, offering us a beach dining experience which really would be hard to beat from a quality perspective.

We were privileged to visit the stunning Anantara resort on its grand opening. The view from the private pool would clearly demonstrate to the incentive winner that they were worth it!

What’s more, there are some exciting products such as the Alila Resort and Dunes by Al Nahda offering a greater connection with nature and wonderful dining experiences.

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I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of service.

  • Shaun Casey
  • Head of Events

What to see and do in Oman

Souks and mosques are very much part of the destination experience in this part of the world. However, authenticity of the experience and the true splendour of Muscat’s public buildings were a delight. The dining experience was fabulous as well with The Cave offering an impressive selection of cuisines from around the world.

Oman has certainly lagged behind its neighbours in terms of investment in tourism over the past decade. However, this now seems to have been rectified, according to Khalid Al Zadjali from Oman’s Convention and Visitors’ Bureau, with the opening of a state-of-the-art convention and exhibition centre and a major airport expansion scheme due for completion at the end of 2017.

Room service!

If you are looking for a connection with the authenticity of a destination, then Oman is most definitely worthy of consideration to stimulate all of the senses and offers a novel way to deliver room service in some of its more remote locations!

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