Chick-fil-A Might Be Coming to Kuwait!

Post by Mark

chickfila

According to an email I received, last week Al Sayer signed a deal to bring the fast food franchise Chick-fil-A to Kuwait (and I’m guessing the region). Al Sayer recently brought Five Guys to Kuwait so I wouldn’t be too surprised if this information turned out to be true. A chicken franchise seems to go hand in hand with a burger one, Americana have Hardees and KFC, Alshaya have Shake Shack and Cane’s Chicken, and Al Sayer will end up with Five Guys and Chick-fil-A. I’ve gotten in touch with my contact at Al Sayer to confirm this information but haven’t heard back from him yet.

Back in 2012 there were rumors Alshaya were in talks to bring Chick-fil-A to the region but the deal fell through. Supposedly one of the terms they couldn’t agree on was the fact that Chick-fil-A wanted to close on Sundays (they’re a very Christian company). Alshaya was trying to convince them to change that rule for the region but Chick-fil-A wasn’t backing down and the deal fell apart.

If Al Sayer do manage to bring Chick-fil-A to the region that would be a pretty amazing accomplishment. Not only does Chick-fil-A only exist in the US at the moment but the way they run their franchises is different from others. For example Chick-fil-A franchise owners generally aren’t allowed to own more than one or two branches in the States so that they can give it all their attention. So handing the reigns to another company to open up as many branches as they wish would be an unusualstep for them. I hope they are coming though since I love their food and I’ve had great experiences at their restaurants which were all super clean and had great service.

Update: Just got a pretty aggressive call a few moments ago from Al Sayer Franchising relating to this post. According to the person I spoke to at Al Sayer Franchising, this is the first they hear about a deal with Chick-fil-A. I’ll not go into too much details relating to the phone call, but I will say it wasn’t the kind of professionalism I was expecting from them.

Now just a bit of perspective on this situation. If by any chance the deal with Chick-fil-A was signed last week with Al Sayer, that information would take time before trickling down the chain of command. So it could still very well be true that Al Sayer acquired the franchise or signed some sort of preliminary agreement but have yet to let everyone internally know. In any case, they are denying this information to be true.


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% ARABICA Gardenia

Post by Mark

arabicag1

Back in April I posted that the popular coffee place ARABICA was opening a second location in Shuwaikh, this past weekend I found out that they’re opening another location as well. ARABICA are opening a new third location in the Arraya Plaza, the open air shaded space between Arraya Mall and the parking lot, the same spot where the first Qout Market took place.

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The new ARABICA will be called ARABICA Gardenia and was designed by a Japanese architect based in Tokyo. Both ARABICA Gardenia as well as the ARABICA location in Shuwaikh are both expected to open in October.

Update: Due to an issue with the original design, the opening of the Arraya location has now been pushed back to November/December.


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Wataniya Airways Coming Back?

Post by Mark

The Wataniya Airways twitter account which had been dormant for 3 years suddenly came back to life with the tweet below stating they’re coming back.

I also got an email from a Wataniya Airways representative stating that they’re targeting to come back between December and January depending on certain circumstances.

For those of you who weren’t around at the time, Wataniya Airways was a premium local airline that launched back in 2009. Compared to Kuwait Airways at that time, they had newer planes and they flew out of the Sheikh Saad terminal which was (and still is) much nicer than the main terminal. In 2011 they shutdown due to financial reasons.

I’ve got a personal attachment to Wataniya Airways since I had worked with them on their advertising from pre-launch till shutdown, so I’m really interested to see how this will pan out.


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Shisha Places Next to Marina Mall Closed Down

Post by Mark

shishaplaces

Does anyone know why all the shisha places next to Marina Mall were closed down? There a couple of rumors circulating including that the government wants the land and that they were all in violation.


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Arnold Schwarzenegger is in Kuwait

Post by Mark

arnie

Arnold Schwarzenegger was spotted at the Kuwait Airport by D’Ron Maingrette, the popular Esports commentator who’s here to attend the GAME Expo thats taking place this weekend. Anyone have an idea why Arnie’s here? Gold’s Gym maybe? [Link]

Update: Arnold just posted the photo below on his instagram account with the caption “Only I can fly around the world, land in Kuwait and run into one of the top bodybuilders at customs @roellywinklaar

arnie2


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Five Guys Opening Soon

Post by Mark

fiveguys

They’re supposedly opening sometime in May or June across the street from Al Shaheed Park in Al Tijaria Tower. They brought down their hoarding today so May or June seems plausible.

Update: The hoarding is still up, the shot was taken from inside it


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Conrad Hotel and Hilton Garden Inn Opening at The Avenues

Post by Mark

Although rumors were originally pointing towards St. Regis and Four Points Hotel opening up at The Avenues Phase 4, it now looks like it’s going to be Conrad Hotel and Hilton Garden Inn (official announcement should be released soon).

I was actually hoping St. Regis would open up since I was really impressed with the one in Doha but Conrad should be nice and fancy as well. On the other hand, Hilton Garden Inn reminds me of those soulless hotels near airports.

The Avenues Phase 4 is expected to launch first quarter of 2018.

Thanks ChaoticTranquility


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Prêt à Manger Coming to Kuwait?

Post by Mark

pretdubaiairport

Now that Pret recently opened up their first location in the Middle East inside the Dubai International Airport, does that mean we’ll also get it? According to a friend who was in Dubai recently and spoke to a Pret employee, it seems that might be the case. The employee didn’t reveal much other than to say they will be eventually expanding around the region which logically should include Kuwait.

Pret is a popular sandwich chain based out of the UK and is super convenient for grabbing a bite on the go which is why I’m not so sure it would succeed here in Kuwait. Not unless they do what “Walls” are doing which is setting up small stations in office towers.

Image Source


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Fashionista Gets 10 Days Jail Sentence

Post by Mark

fashion

The public prosecution yesterday detained a well known fashion blogger in Kuwait for 10 days and referred her to the criminal court on charges of forgery. She allegedly left the using her friend’s passport before the forgery was discovered at Dubai airport and she was returned to Kuwait. [Source]

Since I like gossip, does anyone have any idea which fashion blogger Kuwait Times is talking about?


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Bayt Lothan Closing Down, Turning into Mall

Post by Mark

baytlothan1

Although the title sounds like a joke it isn’t. Bayt Lothan, the non-profit organization that has become an important community center hosting a variety of workshops and events is being evicted from their current property in Salmiya. They’ve been active from that location for the past 20 years but late last year they were told they would have to move out by the end of March.

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Even though the current Bayt Lothan house used to belong to one of the former Amirs, the current owners want the house back so they could turn it into something commercial. The rumor is that the house will be demolished and a mall will be built in it’s place although based on the land size I think it will probably be turned into a food complex.

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Q8 Books whom are located in Bayt Lothan are also being forced to leave although they don’t have anywhere to go. Q8 Books is hoping someone could provide them with space as Bayt Lothan were providing the space to them for free. So not only does it suck that Bayt Lothan is being pushed out but Q8 Books as well. Both are very important culturally and it’s sad to see this happening.

baytlothan4

We don’t need more malls and we definitely don’t need more food complexes.


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