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11 Nov 2013 12:00

Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, concluded its 10th anniversary celebrations in style last night, with a lavish gala reception. 

VIP guests included HH Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Crown Prince Court and Chairman of Etihad Airways, HH Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs, HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, CEO and Chairman of The Emirates Group, HH Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture, Youth and Social Development, HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saif Al Nahyan, Founder Chairman of Etihad Airways, and members of the Etihad Airways board.

The glittering event at Abu Dhabi Sailing and Yacht Club was attended by over 500 people, who were treated to a fly-past, with an Etihad Airways Airbus A340-500 flying at a low altitude of 600 feet along the stunning Abu Dhabi skyline and Corniche breakwater.

During a keynote speech, James Hogan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Airways, said: “In just one decade we have moved from a start-up airline to one that is firmly established on the world travel stage as a safe, profitable, and high-quality business. Throughout our history, we have enjoyed the continuous support of our shareholder, the Government of Abu Dhabi. Tonight I am delighted to once again be able to publicly place on record our deep gratitude and appreciation.

“The remarkable journey to reach our tenth year would not have been possible without the visionary guidance and unstinting support of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the President of the United Arab Emirates, and His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces. Etihad and its people owe them a huge debt of thanks.”

Entertainment at the gala reception was provided by Arabic singing star Kadim Al Sahir, who wowed the audience with his popular anthems.

The event concluded with a dazzling firework display, which was greeted by cheers and applause from hundreds of spectators at Abu Dhabi Corniche and surrounding areas.

The reception capped a memorable week of 10th anniversary celebrations for the airline, including a cake-cutting ceremony and Airbus A330-200 fly-past at the Etihad Airways headquarters, and a Staff Celebration Day at Yas Marina Circuit.

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