02 Feb 2014 13:00

Etihad Airways has introduced a range of limited edition artisanal amenity kits for its guests travelling on longhaul services to and from its home base Abu Dhabi. 

The new products reflect the airline’s deep cultural attachment to the rich and diverse traditions of the United Arab Emirates. 

For the new kits, Etihad Airways has partnered with Sougha, a social enterprise initiative launched by the Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development, which aims to preserve Emirati traditions and promote local artisans. 

The new amenity bags will be offered in Diamond First, Pearl Business and Coral Economy cabins and feature patterns of Sadou, a colourful, intricate and centuries-old Abu Dhabi weaving craft. 

These patterns are based on designs traditionally used on blankets, cushions and Bedouin tents. 

Etihad Airways and Sougha have drawn their inspiration for the kits from these fine textile works and have translated them into modern products which are both functional and stylish in design, reflecting the current trends in fashion yet tapping into the rich and complex tapestry of traditional Emirati craftsmanship. 

Sougha, which translates as ‘a traveller’s gift’ in Arabic, is an initiative which seeks out skilled local men and women across the UAE and gives them a platform from which to develop and find new markets for their craft. 

James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer Etihad Airways, said: “We want our guests to experience the colourful and ancient culture of the UAE – a culture which is inherently part of our identity as the national airline of this diverse nation. These new kits not only enhance the Etihad guest experience, but are also a souvenir of the cultural traditions of this country and a way of supporting local craftsmanship.” 

“The Khalifa Fund’s Sougha initiative, with more than 400 female Emirati members, has become an efficient and practical socio-economic programme focusing on traditional crafts. This skill-developing project seeks to promote the diverse artistic heritage of the United Arab Emirates by empowering women in their families and local community. We are delighted to have the support of Etihad Airways in this endeavor,” said His Excellency Ibrahim Ahmad Al Mansoori, Chairman of Sougha and COO of the Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development. 

Diamond First Class kits will feature exclusive products by luxury New York brand Le Labo, while Pearl Business Class kits will feature all-natural products by Athens based Korres.  

Etihad Airways offers an exclusive range of Sougha products for sale in its Boutique inflight shopping magazine.

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