ATM key platform for latest attractions and destinations - GulfToday

ATM key platform for latest attractions and destinations

The second day of the ATM was also abuzz with exciting announcements and projects at the venue.

Inayat-ur-Rahman, Business Editor

The Arabian Travel Market entered its second day on Tuesday. Exhibitors are upbeat about this year’s event. The Gulf Today shares the candid views of the exhibitors. The Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq) is turning the heads of global industry leaders and emerging travel industry talents alike at the Arabian Travel Market (ATM) with a carefully crafted presentation showcase of its latest achievements in the sector.


The Shurooq ensemble for ATM 2024, which marks its 17th consecutive participation is thoughtfully aligned with the event’s theme this year ‘Empowering Innovation: Transforming Travel Through Entrepreneurship’, and focuses on ways the Authority’s project portfolio of ecotourism destinations and luxury hospitality assets is elevating the region’s sustainable travel sector by introducing new and exciting opportunities for conscious travellers as well as small businesses.

Commenting on ATM participation highlights this year, Ahmed Obaid Al Qaseer, the CEO of Shurooq said: “The theme resonates with Shurooq’s commitment to sustainable investments, particularly within the travel industry. Our projects don’t just open new doors for providers and end users of travel and tourism; they do it in a way that champions sustainability practices.

Through strategic projects like Mleiha National Park, Heart of Sharjah, LUX Al Bridi Resort, and others, we are preserving our cultural and environmental heritage, while also offering a major push to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) target”.

The impactful and mindful ways in which Shurooq is designing and implementing projects to promote sustainable tourism that promotes local culture and products are clearly highlighted at the event. For instance, the Mleiha National Park, Sharjah’s first protected area dedicated to conserving the natural history and archaeological heritage of the emirate, serves as a blueprint for eco-friendly tourism businesses.

The 34km desert in Sharjah’s central region, in parts of which archaeologists unearthed the earliest evidence of human occupation outside Africa, is being developed as a national park, which will feature three separate areas: the Core Conservation Zone, focused on preserving the natural environment and supporting wildlife; the Ecotourism Zone, offering eco-stays, adventures, and educational activities; and the Dunes Zone, which serves as a middle ground for conservation and sustainable tourism practices.

Al Noor Island serves as a serene city retreat for nature lovers and creative minds through art exhibitions, and cultural workshops. Similarly, the Heart of Sharjah, by restoring and revitalising historical buildings, has turned into a bustling hub for cultural appreciation.

On the hospitality front, Shurooq’s marquee developments such as Najd Al Meqsar,  Kingfisher Retreat and Nomad that are part of Shurooq’s Sharjah Collection brand, embody sustainable luxury. Najd Al Meqsar, a joint project between the Authority for Initiatives Implementation (Mubadara) and Shurooq, is located on a mountaintop near Wadi Shie in Khorfakkan, an important historical site.

The development features seven heritage lodgings based on original village architecture, alongside a reception area, a 300-year-old fort, and a mosque. Phase 1 will soon open to visitors, reflecting Shurooq’s dedication to Sharjah’s vision of preserving local environments and revitalising archaeological and historical sites sustainably.

Kingfisher Retreat, a recipient of the World’s Leading Nature Retreat title at The World Travel Awards, is a unique world of conservation and culture that offers guests an intimate look into the UAE’s mangroves and rich biodiversity. 

Nomad, is Shurooq’s offering to experience nature and adventure in Sharjah from the closest quarters. The 20 Nomad trailers, situated in the eastern town of Kalba mountain, feature a host of eco-friendly amenities and modern comforts.

The LUX Al Bridi Resort is a 35-key five-star hospitality offering from Shurooq. It occupies 784 hectares of the Sharjah Safari project in Al Dhaid, and offers unparalleled opportunities for observing and photographing the Big Five of Africa - the rhino, buffalo, elephant, lion, and leopard.

Situated amidst the scenic terrains of Khorfakkan and against the stunning backdrop of Al Soueifa mountain, the LUX* Al Jabal Resort offers an exclusive escape with its 45 meticulously designed units that minimise disruptions from the external world. Both LUX* Resorts epitomise the seamless integration of luxury with sustainability, featuring eco-friendly construction and organic farming, ensuring a harmonious and indulgent experience for guests.


Tourism Malaysia participates in the 31st edition of Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2024, showcasing the country’s latest attractions and destinations to attract more tourists from West Asia. The four-day prestigious event held at the Dubai World Trade Centre from 6 to 9 May 2024 marks Malaysia’s 31st year of participation, demonstrating its enduring commitment to this burgeoning market.

Led by the Honourable Chairman of Tourism Malaysia Datuk (Dr.) Yasmin Mahmood, and accompanied by Dato’ Shaharuddin bin Abu Sohot, Deputy Secretary General (Management), Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, the Malaysian delegation comprises a good mix of 75 organisations, including hotels and resorts, travel agents, tourism product owners, and representatives from state tourism boards.

The Malaysia Pavilion will engage with Middle Eastern buyers, generating interest while highlighting tourism products and services tailored to their specific needs and preferences, thus underscoring the importance placed on West Asia as a key source of tourists, especially during its summer vacation.

“With the upcoming launch and celebration of Visit Malaysia Year 2026, we strive to attract more West Asia tourists. We recognise the immense potential of this market, not only in terms of outbound tourism but also trade and investment.

“We are confident that Malaysia’s position as a top destination for Muslim travellers, coupled with our intensified promotional efforts, will enable us to achieve our target,” stated Datuk (Dr.) Yasmin Mahmood during the launch of the Malaysia Pavilion today.

In 2024, Malaysia aims to welcome 27.3 million international tourist arrivals and generate RM102.7 billion in tourism receipts. The remarkable rise in visitors from the

Gulf region in recent years fuels Tourism Malaysia’s enthusiasm to further cultivate this market.


The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) and dnata Travel Group, a global leader in travel services, have signed a Strategic Partnership Agreement with the aim of enhancing tourism to Thailand. The agreement was formalized on Monday, May 6th, 2024, at the Thailand Pavilion during the Arabian Travel Market 2024 in Dubai, UAE.

The partnership seeks to leverage dnata’s extensive global network, particularly in the GCC region, to drive increased tourist arrivals from the Middle East to Thailand. By focusing on key niche markets and promoting quality leisure destinations within the kingdom, both TAT and dnata aim to enhance Thailand’s appeal and attract discerning travelers.

Under the Strategic Partnership Agreement, TAT and dnata will collaborate on a series of joint promotions tailored to elevate Thailand’s tourism profile across the GCC countries, including the UAE, Oman, Bahrain, and Saudi Arabia. These promotions will target niche tourism segments such as sports, luxury, honeymoon, and wellness, offering tailored experiences to travelers seeking unique and memorable vacations.

The agreement was signed by Ms. Thapanee Kiatphaibool, Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand, and Mr. John Bevan, CEO of the dnata Travel Group, at a ceremony held at the Thailand Pavilion, ATM 2024. Also present were Mr. Rashid Al Awadhi, Senior Vice President – Middle East and India at the dnata Travel Group, Mr. Siripakorn Cheawsamoot, TAT Deputy Governor for International Marketing, and Mr. Nithee Seeprae, TAT Deputy Governor for Marketing Communications, along with other officials from both organizations.

Last Straw

Last Straw,” the brainchild of visionary entrepreneur Hesham Al Ghazali, is set to redefine the landscape of specialty coffee, elevating the customer experience to unprecedented levels of taste and satisfaction. With a blend of innovation, passion, and a steadfast commitment to quality, the venture is poised to revolutionize the way coffee fans indulge in their daily brew.

Hesham Al Ghazali, CEO and co-founder of Last Straw, embarked on a mission inspired by his passion for coffee and a desire to uncover the hidden gems within the industry.

The business’s genesis lies in Al Ghazali’s vision to introduce specialty coffee while shedding light on the untold stories of talented baristas, such as the captivating journey of a Yemeni artisan whose expertise adds a distinctive flavor to every cup.

“At Last Straw, we view coffee not merely as a beverage but as an exquisite journey of taste and discovery,” remarked Hesham Al Ghazali.

“Our goal is to transcend the ordinary and craft moments of joy and revelation with every sip. Through our unwavering dedication to exceptional taste and unparalleled customer service, we are ushering in a new era of coffee appreciation.”

Last Straw’s commitment to excellence extends beyond conventional boundaries. By seamlessly blending artisanal craftsmanship with cutting-edge techniques, the company delivers a sensory experience that captivates the taste and invigorates the senses. Each cup of coffee is a testament to the meticulous care and expertise infused into every step of the brewing process.

Moreover, Last Straw places a premium on customer satisfaction, recognizing that true success lies in the delight of each patron. With a keen emphasis on personalized service and a profound understanding of individual preferences, Last Straw curates’ bespoke coffee experiences tailored to meet the diverse tastes and discerning palates of its clientele.

“We are dedicated to forging meaningful connections and creating indelible memories for our customers,” added Al Ghazali. “Whether it’s a tranquil morning ritual or a lively gathering with friends, Last Straw is committed to surpassing expectations and leaving an enduring mark.”

As Last Straw prepares to unveil its latest offerings and new branch, including an array of signature blends and immersive coffee experiences, the company remains steadfast in its pursuit of innovation, quality, and excellence. With Hesham Al Ghazali leading the charge, Last Straw is poised to redefine the coffee landscape, inspiring a newfound appreciation for the artistry and passion encapsulated within every cup.


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