Blog Posts

Salalah to Muscat

Driving back from Salalah to Muscat along the main road is usually a tedious journey; this time it was quite eventful. The static on the radio announced the storm well before it appeared.

Broken Electricity Poles near Nizwa
Broken Electricity Poles near Nizwa

Ferocious winds and heavy rain swept over the landscape near Nizwa and snapped Continue reading “Salalah to Muscat”

Dhofar Oman

Driving south to Salalah from Muscat I enjoyed seeing some of Oman’s summer bird migrants on the coast.

Bruces Green Pigeon Salalah
Bruces Green Pigeon Salalah

Several pairs of Red Billed Tropic Birds and a flock of Continue reading “Dhofar Oman”

Al Bustan Palace Hotel

I had a nice preview of the changes at Al Bustan Palace during the hotel’s refit. I arrived in Muscat in 1986 just after the initial opening of Al Bustan Palace and then lived for many years in Al Bustan village next to the hotel. Though I have moved a few kilometres away its always been like dear friend and neighbour.

Al Bustan Palace bedroom preview
Al Bustan Palace bedroom preview

The hotel, scheduled to re-open later in 2008, Continue reading “Al Bustan Palace Hotel”

Walk in the Najd of Dhofar

With cloud cover increasing over the Dhofar coast of Oman I took time to trek through the barren landscape of Dhofar, not on the coast but in the barren mountains towards the desert.

Frankincense Tree Najd Dhofar
Frankincense Tree Najd Dhofar

Here we passed Frankincense trees rustling in the wind and occasional Fan Tailed Ravens but little else of substance. Continue reading “Walk in the Najd of Dhofar”

Olympic Torch in Muscat

On its way to China the Olympic Torch snaked its way through Muscat today – I parked my car just behind the roadblocks and joined the crowds.
Oman is the only Arab country where the torch will visit – therefore the government invited personalities from around the Arab world to share in the torch carrying.

Olympic Torch Corniche
Olympic Torch Corniche

It can’t have been a co-incidence that Continue reading “Olympic Torch in Muscat”

Fish and Flora in Oman

The green stuff is very much the focus in Muscat at the moment.

Dr Annette Patzelt
Dr Annette Patzelt

Apart from the green dollars coming in from high oil prices the new Botanical Garden project is now under way and due for completion in 2010 – the same opening time that the new Continue reading “Fish and Flora in Oman”

Meals in Oman

It has been a week of contrasts with meals for me. In the rarefied atmosphere up on the 2000meter high plateau of Jabal Akhdar I took clients on a walk through the flowering Peach, Apricot and Almond gardens where fragile flowers bloom in a rugged landscape. We then enjoyed a wonderful lunch of rice and chicken in the home of a local family – the chicken, flavoured with spices was the most tasty chicken I had eaten in a long time .
Several hundred kilometres away near Masirah Island & 2000meters lower down from my mountain lunch I shared a night-time meal of rice and locally caught fish a few meters from the Arabian Sea. We joined local fisher folk for dinner by the light of an old lantern with the sound of the surf in a very atmospheric meal
The section of coast we enjoyed has a scattering of small fishing villages who use the beach or boat to travel from one to the other.
During the winter, the beaches are full of gulls snacking off discarded fish from the anglers’ nets. Other sea bird passing including chains of undulating cormorants as they flew from their roost to feeding grounds farther along the coast.
By way of contrast back in Muscat I was delighted to have a couple of dinners at The Chedi with Timothy Burrill just before his film ‘La vie en Rose’ won a couple of Oscars. With classic Italian food, a delightful restaurant and sparkling conversation from Timothy and Petra it rounded off a week of special meals.

Shangri-la Al Husn

It was great to be able to welcome the ‘Travel Management Team’ into Oman again with their corporate clients. After a non-stop flight into Muscat from London the 40 strong group arrived at Al Husn hotel, part of Shangri La’s Barr al Jissah Resort and Spa. We had organised a long weekend of rest and relaxation in Oman’s winter sun.

Travel Management Disco
Travel Management Disco

The group arrived after Oman had experienced a cooler period of weather. The newspapers and talk here was of Continue reading “Shangri-la Al Husn”

Lexus showroom opens in Muscat

It’s the weekend and Muscat is engulfed in a dust storm and high winds. Fortunately living, as I do, in a valley means our building is spared the stronger winds.

Lexus opening fireworks
Lexus opening fireworks

Despite the wind, in the evening the pyrotechnic Continue reading “Lexus showroom opens in Muscat”