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Car rental firm now in Jordan for tourists to Petra or Dead Sea



A generative AI image of a car in front of an archaeological site in Petra, Jordan

Leading global car rental firm and the Dubai-incubated Finalrentals added Jordan this week to its atlas of world-class destinations for providing transport services to locals and tourists.

Jordan became the company’s 32nd country where FinalRentals will now have a presence, after the fastest growing car rental network reached the shores of Greece last month. “This signifies our commitment to offering quality, yet affordable car rental services to travellers exploring the landscapes and cultural treasures of the region,” said Ammar Akhtar, the CEO and Founder of FinalRentals, who spent his formative years in Dubai and is now being funded by British entities, DevBanc of Wales and Fuel Ventures.

“We are now building on our successful expansion into the vibrant Balkans and South Europe market by bringing our top-notch car rental services to customers in yet another dynamic and growing region like this through Jordan,” said Akhtar as he aims to expand his platform’s range to 100 countries by September 2025. “Our expansion into Jordan reflects our dedication to offering unmatched services in every corner of the globe.”

With two airports serving arrivals in Amman, one of the oldest inhabited cities especially in the Arab world, tourists can look forward to drive around the city before embarking on a road trip of 200 kilometres to the iconic ‘Rose City’ Petra or further south to Wadi Rum (285kms) or the beaches around the nearby Dead Sea. Home to more than 100,000 archaeological and tourist sites and possessing one of the best network of road and infrastructure, Jordan is an ideal destination to take out the car and enjoy the best that the country has to offer.

With the establishment of a master franchise in Jordan, FinalRentals will provide an unparalleled driving experience throughout the country. Travellers can embark on their own unique journeys and create unforgettable memories in the heart of the Middle East through the innovative platform conceived just before Covid-19 pandemic in Dubai.

For now Jordan is the next stop for the globe-trotting Akhtar. “Jordan holds a timeless allure with its rich history and breathtaking vistas, and we are thrilled to be part of our customers’ extraordinary adventures in this remarkable country. And it is also so close to Dubai where I spent so much time and where this company was born,” he said.


Carlos Díez de la Lastra, CEO of Les Roches, is among 150 most influential professionals in tourism in Spain



Sergestur (Servicios de Gestión Turística/ Tourism Management Services), the tourism consulting firm, has published the fifth edition of its list of the 150 most influential figures in the sector in Spain during Fitur 2024. Once again, Carlos Díez de la Lastra, Global CEO of Les Roches, one of the top four specialized schools in hospitality and luxury tourism education worldwide, is featured for the fifth consecutive year.

The CEO of Les Roches, who has positioned the institution as one of the top four schools for hotel management and training in the world, continues to expand the brand into new markets such as Abu Dhabi, China, and India. Recently, the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) has established a hospitality education academy to be managed and guided under the stewardship of Les Roches in Abu Dhabi, which will open in September 2024.

Since joining Les Roches in 2014 as General Manager of Les Roches Marbella, Carlos Díez de la Lastra Buigues (Madrid, 1970) has pursued a clear and ambitious goal: to position Les Roches at the forefront of excellence and innovation in the sector and establish it as a leading academic center internationally.

On his tenth anniversary within Les Roches, Carlos Díez de la Lastra has just presented at Fitur the school’s new educational offerings for 2024. For the upcoming academic year, Les Roches’ prospective students will have a greater number of specialized educational programs in different areas, such as golf course management or cruises. This expansion aims to meet the new needs arising in an ever-changing sector.

The CEO of Les Roches shares the list with other influential personalities from different specialties within the sector such as Dabiz Muñoz, chef of Diverxo; Gabriel Escarrer, chairman & CEO of Meliá Hotels International; Miguel Sanz, general director of Turespaña; Patricia Gutiérrez, director of communication and strategic marketing of the Basque Culinary Center; Rosana González, general manager of the Hotel Colón; Carmen y Luis RIU Güell, RIU Hotels; or Manuel Molina, editor of Hosteltur, among others.

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Bollywood sensation Neha Kakkar to perform at Abu Dhabi T10 final



The closing ceremony of the final of Abu Dhabi T10 2023 will be a star-studded affair with Bollywood singing sensation Neha Kakkar set to perform live at the Zayed Cricket Stadium on Saturday, Dec 9th, before the start of the final match. Neha Kakkar, who is currently regarded as one of the most popular Bollywood artists, will set the stage on fire with a vibrant concert starting from 1800 hrs GST. The hottest ticket in town for the Abu Dhabi T10 Final will be available for just AED 10, and fans can also witness the Closing Ceremony at no additional cost! Tickets are available at

Kakkar made a name for herself during the second season of Indian Idol in 2005, and since then, has been associated with some of the top music labels in India. She enjoys a cult following among the Indian masses with her tracks being played out across parties, weddings, and clubs, and is one of the most followed female Indian artists on Spotify. In 2021, Kakkar became the first Indian singer to win a YouTube Diamond award. Currently, her official YouTube page has 14.4 million followers, and she recently also performed live in front of packed crowds during the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 match between India and Pakistan in Ahmedabad.

Apart from the Indian singer, Iranian-German model, actress, dancer, and singer Elnaaz Norouzi will also dazzle the jam-packed crowd with a sensational dance performance. Norouzi entered the Indian film industry with the Netflix cult classic Sacred Games and since then has worked across several Indian movies and TV shows, with her latest appearance being in the second season of Made in Heaven. She also made her Hollywood debut alongside Gerard Butler in the 2023 hit Kandahar.

A stunning fashion show featuring gorgeous costume designs by Libaas will also lighten up the atmosphere at the stadium before the start of the match.

Commenting on the closing ceremony of Abu Dhabi T10 2023, Shaji Ul Mulk, Chairman, T10 Sports Management, said, “The Final day of the Abu Dhabi T10 2023 will be an affair like no other. The T10 format was always meant to entertain fans and we want everyone to have a great time. We have brought on renowned international artists and designers to engage all fans with spectacular performances and set the tone for some cracking cricketing action that they will get to witness on Saturday. The tournament has already raised the bar high this year and the grand finale will only set new limits for the competition.”

Abu Dhabi T10 2023 will be broadcast on CricLife3 available on Etisalat, Elife IPTV, Switch TV, and Starzplay in UAE-MENA. It will also be aired in Pakistan on channel A Sports and live streamed on TapMad. Indian fans can watch the season on Viacom Sports 18 2 (Hindi) and on Jio Cinema app. The tournament this season, will also air on Supreme TV in Sri Lanka, on BT Sport in the United Kingdom, on ESPN in the Caribbean, on Willow TV in North America, on T Sports in Bangladesh, and Fox Sports in Australia.

Cricket fans in UAE can buy the Abu Dhabi Season 7 Final for just AED 10 via:

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Japanese culture gets full display in Dubai



The Japan Culture Con (JCC) convention, dedicated to showcasing the richness of culture from the Land of the Rising Sun, drew to a close with resounding response at the Burj Park, Dubai.

The JCC brought together enthusiasts, artists, and experts over a period of three days to create a vibrant tapestry of traditional and contemporary expressions.

According to the organisers, JCC exceeded their expectations with record-breaking attendance numbers. Over 13,000 enthusiasts gathered to immerse themselves in the multifaceted beauty of Japan’s cultural heritage. The diverse audience contributed to the event’s dynamic atmosphere, fostering cultural exchange and understanding.

A range of diverse and dynamic programming played an important part in the event’s success. Attendees experienced a kaleidoscope of traditional arts, modern performances, interactive workshops, and immersive exhibits that showcased the evolution of Japanese culture. The fusion of tradition and innovation was a key theme, resonating with participants of all ages and backgrounds.

The convention featured a stellar lineup of cultural icons and rising stars, including renowned artists, performers, and experts in various fields. Their contributions brought authenticity and depth to the event, enriching the experience for attendees and highlighting the global appeal of Japanese culture.

The Culture Con successfully leveraged various platforms to engage a global audience. Social media channels buzzed with excitement, with attendees sharing their favorite moments and connecting with like-minded individuals. The virtual components of the event allowed those unable to attend in person to participate, expanding the reach of the convention.

The success was further amplified through strategic collaborations and partnerships. Japanese businesses, cultural organisations, and sponsors played a crucial role in supporting and enhancing the event, contributing to its overall success. Journalists and influencers highlighted the unique experiences, performances, and cultural insights presented at Japan Culture Con, further establishing it as a premier event in the cultural calendar.

The organisers – Keisaku Nishida (CEO) and Beenish Muneer (Managing Director) of Westfield Event Management – said in a statement: “We extend our heartfelt gratitude to all attendees, supporters, sponsors, and partners who contributed to the success of Japan Culture Con. Their enthusiasm and commitment to celebrating Japanese culture made the event a truly memorable and enriching experience.” There are plans already to build on the success, they said.

This family was part of the roughly 13,000 attendees at the Japan Culture Con

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