Shanghai, China – Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, has celebrated the deployment of the Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner on its daily scheduled services to Shanghai by hosting a spectacular “Abu Dhabi Night" reception. The event took place at Bellagio Shanghai, a five-star hotel inspired by the Art Deco history of the city’s famous Bund and styled on a ‘modern interpretation of Shanghai’s past’. The occasion was attended by leading figures from the UAE and local government officials, diplomats, corporate partners, members of the travel industry and social influencers from the two countries.
To highlight the
cosmopolitan nature of Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the UAE, and to promote
cultural fusion between Emirati and Chinese citizens, the evening featured a
series of performances by Arabic and Chinese artists, and offered a tapestry of
cuisines jointly created by Hanan Sayed Worrell, food writer and author of
Table Tales: The Global Nomad Cuisine of Abu Dhabi, and Bellagio Shanghai
Deputy Executive Sous Chef Michael Wu. The evening gave a glimpse into the
fascinating culinary experiences every leisure and business traveller can enjoy
in Abu Dhabi.
Etihad Aviation Group Chief Commercial Officer, said: “Since the launch of our flights
between Shanghai and Abu Dhabi in 2012, we have witnessed huge growth in
China’s outbound tourism market and experienced strong demand from both
business and leisure travellers. We appreciate the tremendous support and
recognition we’ve received in recent years from our guests, partners and
stakeholders, who have been instrumental in cementing Etihad’s position as a
leading airline in this important market.
“We are delighted
to now deploy the larger 787-10 Dreamliner on this popular route, a decision
which reflects the importance of Shanghai and China to Etihad Airways. The new aircraft
will help to support the increasing demand for travel to and from Shanghai. In
Particular, it will help support the surging growth in leisure travel from
Shanghai and its surrounding cities in Eastern China, to the Middle East and
beyond, via our hub in Abu Dhabi.
introduction of the 787-10 to Shanghai, and the introduction of Dreamliners on
our services to Beijing, Chengdu and Hong Kong, travellers departing from all
four of our gateways in China can now experience our latest products, services
and in-flight innovations on the newest aircraft type in our fleet.
“We also believe
our passengers should be able to customise their journey, and last year we
launched our ‘Choose Well’ brand platform, enabling guests to tailor-make their
travel experience with a new range of products and travel options designed to
meet all requirements.”
H.E. Dr. Ali Obaid
Al Dhaheri, UAE Ambassador to China, said: “The aviation sector makes an
invaluable contribution of 13 per cent of the UAE's GDP and as such is one of
the most valuable aspects of the UAE-China relationship. Our country has become
an important strategic trading partner for China’s overseas investment, positioned
as it is at the crossroads of continents. The UAE sits at a crucial pivot point
of the international arc of the Belt and Road Initiative, and we are working
with the Chinese government to capitalize on this geostrategic benefit, as the
natural gateway to Africa and the wider Middle East.
upgrade, alongside numerous other initiatives driven by Etihad Airways, is part
of a series of positive developments in the aviation sector, and I am delighted
that the ties between the UAE and China are being further strengthened in these
very real and practical ways. The new daily scheduled services between Abu
Dhabi and Shanghai support the advancement of the UAE-China relationship
through these connections of businesses, cultures and peoples. This work will
underpin shared UAE-China aims to achieve a common goal of pursuing sustainable
growth, stability, and prosperity at an ever-increasing pace,” H.E. said.
The number of
Chinese tourists arriving in the UAE now exceeds 1 million per year, while 3.5
million Chinese passengers transit through the country each year, assisted by
direct services, the mutual visa-exemption policy between the UAE and China
implemented last January, and the great efforts in promoting bidirectional
destinations and business investment.
Worrell, author of Table Tales: The Global Nomad Cuisine of Abu Dhabi and
long-term resident of Abu Dhabi said: “I am excited to present Table Tales in
Shanghai, one of the modern cultural centers of Asia. Shanghai, with its
multicultural flair, uniquely blends eastern and western influences, as seen in
its architecture, style and cuisine that produce unforgettable memories.
Similarly, Abu Dhabi’s location at the historic crossroads of the spice trade
routes, with the different influences from East and West, has resulted in a
cosmopolitan city, with diverse cultures and a rich cuisine that is packed with
flavours, vibrant in colours and rich in aromas.”
service to Shanghai was inaugurated in March 2012, with Dreamliner services on
this route launched in August 2016. The route has proved very successful for
the airline, recording consistently strong demand to and from both cities.