People in Kuwait Getting Unhappier

Post by Mark

The World Happiness Report was recently released by the United Nations and Kuwait once again dropped down the list from the previous year. When the list originally came out in 2012, Kuwait was ranked 31st under the list of happy nations. But, since then, Kuwait has been falling back every year and in the latest report Kuwait is now ranked 41. The scoring is based on answers submitted by people who were asked to evaluate the quality of their current lives on a scale of 0 to 10. In comparison, the UAE came in 28th place while Saudi Arabia came in 34th. Let me repeat that one more time. Saudi Arabia came in 34th place. No clue how that happened.

The happiest country in the world? It’s Denmark. Download the full report from the World Happiness website [Here]


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The Kuwait Towers – Everything You Need to Know

Post by Mark

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Yesterday the Kuwait Towers officially opened to the public for the first time in over 4 years. Here is everything you need to know in case you’re planning to visit it.

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Entrance Fee
There are two main area in the Kuwait Towers, the restaurants sphere and the viewing sphere. If you want to go to the viewing sphere it’s KD3 per person. If you want to go to the restaurants there is no entrance fee. If you eat at the restaurant then you can go to the viewing deck for free as long as you keep your meal receipt. Children under 4 go in for free. If you’re going to the restaurants you can also park inside the Kuwait Towers parking lot.

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The Viewing Sphere
This sphere is located in the top most part of the Kuwait Towers. It’s split into two floors with the top floor having a rotating platform and a small food stand. It’s open from 9AM to 11:30PM.

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The view from the top is spectacular and better than before since we now have a beautiful city skyline because of all the new skyscrapers like Hamra Tower.

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For a closer look they’ve kept the original coin operated binoculars.

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The only issue I had with the viewing deck is that it smelled of popcorn because of the food stand. The food stand really should have been a Starbucks since right now it reminds me of those small dodgy food stalls located under the stairs in old Salmiya. They have drinks, a few cold sandwiches, soft serve ice cream and popcorn.

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The Restaurant Sphere
There are two restaurants and a lounge in the restaurant sphere which is also divided into two floors. The first restaurant is called Horizon (pictured above) and is located on the top floor of the sphere. It’s an open buffet and they’re open from breakfast to dinner, here are the details:

Breakfast Buffet 8AM to 11:30AM for KD7.5
Lunch Buffet: 12:30PM to 4PM for KD14
Dinner Buffet: 7PM to 11:30PM for KD14

For reservations you can contact them on 22444021 or 22444038

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There is a second restaurant (pictured above) which as of this post hasn’t opened yet. Its located on the lower floor of the sphere and it’s called Le Cafe (but it’s going to be a steakhouse). It looks slightly more fancier and instead of being a buffet it will have an à la carte menu. Once it’s open the timings will be 8AM to 12AM (midnight).

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Right outside the second restaurant on the lower floor is a small lounge. You can order beverages there but it’s a fairly small lounge with only three seating areas similar to the one pictured above so good luck trying to find an empty one.

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Finally if you’re taking a guest to the Kuwait Towers and they were hoping to leave with a souvenir well they’re going to be disappointed. According to an employee at the Kuwait Towers, the souvenirs shop that was originally located on the ground floor has be closed down and will be converted to a prayer room.

If you’ve never been to the Kuwait Towers I would highly recommend going. If you’ve been to it before I’d also recommend passing by just for the nostalgia. It’s still by far one of my favorite places to take visitors who come to Kuwait.

Update: I added a bit more information to the post, specifically the reservation numbers and information regarding souvenirs.


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Introducing Double Jump!

Post by Patrick

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I’ve been interested in Podcasts for the longest time but I was always hesitant to get into it because I’m more of a writer than a speaker. But then I ended up meeting some of the guys from the LuckyGG Arabic gaming podcast who encouraged me to take a chance and start my own Podcast especially since there aren’t many English podcasts about video games in this region.

I co-created the podcast with Yaqoub Al- Hussaini who is one of the hosts of LuckyGG and we’re also joined by Abdullah Boushehri also from LuckyGG. The goal of Double Jump is to discuss games we’ve been playing, news that we find interesting and regional news that we feel like our listeners would be interested in. The goal is to record an episode a week and publish it every Wednesday. These episodes will be two hours long.

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I’m also planning on recording Double Jump episodes where I’m on my own and some episodes with a different co-host each week but this is still a work in progress, hopefully I’ll be able to start publishing those episodes sometimes mid-March.

We recorded and published our first episode last week and I’ve linked to it at the end of this post. We’re learning as we go and I think Yaqoub and Abdullah both did a great job especially since English isn’t their first language. I also appreciate the fact that they’re willing to go out of their comfort zone for me. I’m learning a lot after listening to just this one episode and feedback is always welcomed so feel free to leave a comment with suggestions or thoughts.

In this first episode we discuss a variety of games, mainly The Division Beta and Street Fighter V. We also discuss some major news that came out these past few weeks like the pricing of the HTC Vive. Our first episode is available everywhere!

iTunes | Android | RSS | Play in New Window | Download

Posted by Patrick


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Kuwait Towers Reopening March 8th

Post by Mark

The Kuwait Towers will be reopening next month to the public on March 8th with the actual opening ceremony (which will include fireworks) on March 5th. Oddly though, according to the general manager of the Kuwait Towers Mubarak Al Anezi, the refurbishing of the restaurant and observation deck took only two months to complete. So why were the towers closed for 4 years?


[YouTube]

Thanks Sala6a


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Petition: Stop the Demolition of Bayt Lothan

Post by Mark

baytlothan

Someone put up a petition in a bid to stop the demolition of Bayt Lothan. Not being pessimistic here but I highly doubt a petition will make a difference, I mean when they were going to demolish the original Chamber of Commerce and Industry building two years ago, there were protests and it was all over the media yet the building still got demolished in the end. But I guess it doesn’t hurt to at least try so here is the link to the petition [Link]


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Kuwait the World’s Food Capital by 2030

Post by Mark

There are several steps which might develop Kuwait and make new national income for the country, and one of the ideas it to make Kuwait a touristic city where people visit to try high standard quality and ingredients. Creating the world’s food capital within 2030 in Kuwait is the main goal. And this video is the first step toward the main goal.

I have mixed feelings with this idea, on one hand Kuwait does have some really great local food concepts but I don’t think we have enough of them. The majority of the local food concepts basically lack any creativity and are just clones of one another. Plus, the lack of alcohol will definitely be an issue for elite chefs as well as the food tourists coming here. And what about the elephant in the room? Dubai like it or not is more of a GCC food capital than Kuwait is right now. Just thinking about Dubai is making me crave the warm chocolate mousse at La Serre. Yum. [YouTube]

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Internet Prices in Kuwait – 2016

Post by Mark

Even though InfoConnect got canceled this year, the local internet providers still decided to introduce special offers and discounted prices. I took the liberty to list all the internet prices in a table to make it easy to compare. Most of the internet providers are providing additional benefits like scratch and win cards or gifts, so make sure you visit their website for more details. The list above is based on the yearly prices and taken from the internet providers websites. This year I’ve also decided to add mobile internet prices to the list due to the fact that their connection speeds and prices have become extremely competitive with the regular internet providers. Check out the list below:

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It Snowed in Kuwait this Morning

Post by Mark

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Photo taken this morning in Al Salmi area. [Source]

Update: Got a few more pictures, check them out below:

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Kuwait Vision 2035 Film

Post by Mark

As promised, here is the video I spoke about yesterday morning on Kuwait’s vision for 2035. The video is pretty long at 23 minutes so if you want to skip to the interesting parts forward to minute 13:48. Just to give you an idea of how large Bubiyan Island is, Manhattan New York is 87 square kilometres while Bubiyan is 863 square kilometres. It’s literally ten times larger so you can imagine how wasted the space is right now.

Watching the video gives me the impression that fixing Kuwait is going to be such a difficult task that they decided it might be easier to just build a new Kuwait from scratch on Bubiyan. I’m curious to know if alcohol be legal on the islands? My guess it would have to be if they’re hoping to attract tourism. [YouTube]

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Kuwait Islands Project 2035

Post by Mark

island1

Yesterday the Amir was presented a video showing a proposed project for developing the Kuwaiti islands Boubyan, Failaka, Awha, Warba and Miskan. I watched the video late last night and I’m in complete awe. The video presentation is around 20 minutes long and showcases ideas on what could be done to our islands. It was pretty inspirational and really made me realize how lucky we are to have all these islands around us. But, it also made me realize how we are under utilizing the islands even though there is so much potential.

I don’t have permission to share the video just yet, I was told it should be launching officially sometime today so for now I’ll just share some screenshots below. I’ve already uploaded the video online so once I get the green light I’ll share it right away.

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