Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, is expanding the range of services it offers business and leisure travellers with the launch today of its new destination management company – Hala Abu Dhabi.
Hala Abu Dhabi will be based in the nation’s capital but offer travel products, services and activities throughout all seven Emirates of the UAE.
Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways chief commercial officer, said: “Etihad Airways already plays a crucial role in bringing visitors to Abu Dhabi, and the introduction of Hala Abu Dhabi will enable us to take that role a step further at what is a very exciting time for tourism in the region. Through Hala Abu Dhabi, we will offer a range of unique ground services and travel solutions to visitors to the UAE, further supporting Abu Dhabi’s goal of becoming one of the world’s most attractive business and leisure destinations.
“We look forward to working closely with our destination partners and tourism services in Abu Dhabi and across all seven Emirates to provide a one-stop inbound tourism shop delivering integrated travel solutions and unique experiences of consistently high quality.”
The range of travel products offered under the Hala Abu Dhabi brand from Etihad and various local service providers includes:
• tours and desert safaris;
• event management;
• bespoke experience packages and VIP services;
• airport meet and assist;
• ground transportation;
• a full range of accommodation options - from luxury to economy;
• world-class business conference and meeting venues with state of the art technology and facilities.
Etihad Airways has brought together an experienced team of specialists to work on the Hala Abu Dhabi portfolio.
“Our Hala Abu Dhabi team has recently developed and managed inbound packages for the very successful Formula 1™ Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in 2009, and the V8 Supercars hosted in Abu Dhabi last month,” Mr Baumgartner said.
More than 1.5 million hotel guests visited Abu Dhabi in 2009, many of whom travelled to the city to visit specific tourist attractions. Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority (ADTA) has targeted 1.65 million hotel guests for 2010.
The 10 per cent rise in hotel guests this year will be driven by Abu Dhabi’s aggressive long-term tourism development plan, which will see the development of numerous visitor attractions including Ferrari World Abu Dhabi – the world’s largest indoor theme park –, the Louvre Abu Dhabi, the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi and the eco-friendly Saadiyat Beach Golf Course, designed by golfing legend Gary Player as the Arabian Gulf’s only ‘ocean’ course with several beachfront holes.
The logo of Hala Abu Dhabi has been designed to reflect the heritage and culture of the United Arab Emirates as well as a focus on quality, which Hala Abu Dhabi is dedicated to delivering to all its clients.
Working closely with Etihad Holidays, Hala Abu Dhabi boasts a strong Emirati representation. More than 50 per cent of the tourism professionals in the company are UAE nationals who possess invaluable knowledge about the rich Emirati culture, customs and traditions and must see attractions across the country.