Sneak Peek: eFashion

Posted by Mark

emall1

Last month I posted about a new multibrand store that’s opening in Hawalli called eFashion. What grabbed my attention was their teaser image on Facebook which had multiple brands that weren’t officially available in Kuwait yet like A&F, Hollister and Under Armor. I didn’t really understand how they were getting all these brands but I assumed it was just old stock. That comment irked the team behind the project which is why they invited me to pass by the store and get a sneak peek.

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eFashion is a new project by Eureka electronics and it’s going to be located in their new eMall building located in Hawalli opposite Sultan Center. eMall is what Eureka are calling the building which houses Eureka electronics, eToy family amusement center, eFashion which I am going to talk about now and a bunch of restaurants including Zaatar w Zeit, Cafe Supreme, Nestle Cafe, Mrs Fields, Chiquita Fruit Bar and opening soon the popular Turkish bakery Simit Sarayi and the Lebanese restaurant Villa Fayrouz. There’s also an eSocial Cafe that is opening in a couple of months where all the tables will consist of Microsoft Surface multimedia tables.

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eFashion is located on the second mezzanine floor of eMall. Once you step out of the elevator you will walk out into the cosmetics department which separates the sports wear on the left hand side and casual wear on the right. We walked into the sportswear section first where I was met with the familiar Nike section followed by other sections like Puma, Adidas, Umbro, Speedo and more.

nike

What I wanted to pass by was the Under Armor section since it’s a brand everyone wants but nobody had carried until now. I asked them how they were able to get the brand to Kuwait and turns out that Under Armor will officially be coming to Kuwait in around 10 months time but until they do, eFashion will be stocking up on their gear.

underarmour

Once we were done with the sportswear section we headed into the casual wear section which was divided into three parts, men, women and kids. I walked around the whole area which was still being put together and noticed many brands including A&F, Hollister, Tommy Hilfiger, Polo Ralph Lauren, Ralph Lauren RLX‎, Lacoste and more. Thats when I brought up the question on how they were able to bring these brands to Kuwait when some of the brands don’t exist at all or even when some of them already do. Specifically I wanted to know how they were able to get A&F and Hollister. According to the person I spoke, the A&F and Hollister clothing is brought in from the US with some strict restrictions by the company which I am guessing is a very limited range of products. You won’t find everything on the A&F website in their store for example and the section is fairly small consisting of one corner and a few tables in front of it. But they’re official A&F products which is all some people will care about. Other brands like Lacoste for example, the line they’re importing is different from what you will find at the Lacoste store in Kuwait.

aandf

We started talking about prices and I mentioned Sears which I had also mentioned in my previous post on eFashion. According to them, unlike Sears all their products are current to the season and they also have full size runs of all the items they’re stocking. Price-wise they will also be similar to US prices, so if you find something on the A&F website for example that’s $40, it should cost you around $40 at the store as well.

eMall is currently open but the eFashion floor will be opening in ten days time on August 15th. If you don’t know where eMall is located, here it is on [Google Maps]


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Kuwait taking part in the World Championship Tank Biathlon

Posted by Mark

kuwaittank

Kuwait along with Armenia, Belarus, Venezuela, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, China, Mongolia, Russia and Serbia is participating in the 2014 Tank Biathlon in Russia. The championship is being held in four stages:

The first one – an individual race – will be held from August 4 through 6. August 4 will see the first crews competing in three races with four tanks in each. The first race will include tank crews from Angola, Kazakhstan, Mongolia and Serbia. The Russian national team will be performing in the second race along with teams from China, Kuwait and Armenia. The first day of the championship will end with a race among the crews from India, Belarus, Venezuela and Kyrgyzstan. The individual race envisages a seven-kilometer three-round itinerary.

The second stage – the sprint – will be held on August 8-9. The sprint distance, as is traditional in biathlon, will be the shortest one: three kilometers. It will be this stage that will set the sequence and temporary start-time gap in the pursuit race.

The third stage – the pursuit race – will be held on August 11-12. This type of biathlon race will be based on the results of the sprint (individual start) race.

The final stage will see the first four teams resulting from all three stages identifying the winner during a relay race. Three crews from each national team will make three four-kilometer rounds on one tank (with crew replacement). [Source]


[YouTube]

I didn’t know such a competition existed and Kuwait seems like the odd one out amongst the 12 countries. Video from the first day of the championship is already online, you can see Kuwait come in at the 2:14:44 mark.

Thanks Abdul


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KUWAIT – Through Our Eyes (Part 1)

Posted by Mark

The first part of the documentary on Kuwait that is airing on British Airways this month has been uploaded online in full HD. It’s nearly 12 minutes long and you can watch it above. [YouTube]

throughoureyes


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Demolition Blunder

Posted by Mark

demo1

So you know that parking lot in Salmiya I’ve posted about that’s filled with graffiti and is now getting demolished? Well whoever is demolishing the building messed up, not just once, not twice, but three times!

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As you can see from the photos, the demolition has damaged the still brand new unopened mall in three different places.

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What probably is worse is the fact that the demolition area isn’t cordoned off which means kids from the neighborhood could just walk into the demolition site or just go up the easily accessible stairs of the partly demolished lot. Sadly it’s not a big deal because most of us here have grown accustomed to the lack of professionalism involved in demolition. On a similar topic, a reader the other day left the following comment under the Family Bookshop post:

Speaking of demolishing. An Indian that works for our company became paralyzed from the waste down just this past month because the building next door was being demolished. The side wall of the building fell into their building knocking down the wall to his room.

That’s messed up.


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Thinking of going to Cuba?

Posted by Mark

cuba

A couple of weeks ago, me and a friend where looking for places to travel this coming October and Cuba was on the top of our list. We didn’t manage to do much research other than finding out which airline would take us there but, the local travel blog Hello 965 just posted some information on Cuba including how to get there and what to do once you’re there. So if you’re ever considering flying to Cuba, this post should interest you. Check out her post over [Here]


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A Porsche Spyder from Kuwait in London

Posted by Mark

Someone recently spotted a Porsche 918 Spyder from Kuwait in London and recorded a video of it. Not sure what hotel is in the video but based on all the Kuwaiti cars parked there you’d think it was a hotel in Kuwait. The Spyder starts at KD265,000 but the one in the video is a modified Oakley Design model and might possibly be the first and only Spyder in Kuwait at the moment. [YouTube]

spyder


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Orbea and Olma Bicycles

Posted by Mark

orbea

If you’re looking for a good branded bike in Kuwait you really don’t have much options other than Trek. I actually had to order my bicycle online due to this fact but things are starting to get better. VIB is a small bike store that opened around a year ago in the Al-Rai area but recently moved to Salmiya and opened up shop right next to Extreme Sports (the Trek dealer).

VIB carry two brands of bicycles, Olma and the race winning Orbea which is the more popular brand and the one that a lot of top racers use. Back at the Beijing Olympics two gold medal winners were on Orbea bikes for example. They carry both road and mountain bikes and seem to have a large variety to choose from. Prices vary but most of the ones I checked hovered at around KD300.

If you’re interested in their bikes, they’re open from 10 to 1 and then again 3 to 9. Their phone number is 55219829 and here is their location on [Google Maps]


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The Kuwaiti Resistance

Posted by Mark

resistence

On the occasion of the Kuwait Invasion I thought I would share a very informative article on the Kuwaiti Resistance. The article was published by the Middle East Quarterly back in 1995 but is actually taken from a book called “Days of Fear“. It’s very interesting to read although it’s a bit long. I actually had to send it to my Kindle so I could read it since I don’t generally read articles this long in a web browser.

The article contains intricate details on the resistance and lots of accounts of their heroic actions, many which I hadn’t heard of before. Here’s a snippet just to give you an idea of the kind of stories that the article contains:

On some occasions, Kuwaitis had no choice but to take severely wounded Resistance fighters to the hospitals, sometimes only steps ahead of the Iraqis. In one incident, a youth shot in the head was admitted as a traffic accident victim. The Iraqis knew that someone had been wounded and would end up in a hospital, so they searched the operating rooms just as he was about to undergo surgery. The patient was obviously in a bad way but the Kuwaiti doctor could not risk telling the cause of his wound. The patient’s x-rays would clearly show the bullet in his head, so the Kuwaiti doctors played a trick: One of them left the room, ostensibly to get the images that were just then being developed, but actually x-rayed his own head and showed the film to the Iraqi, who was satisfied by this ruse and left the hospital staff to get on with its work.

And here is another:

About ten days before the land war, in late February 1991, another gaffe outside Kuwait may have undone much of their good work. The Resistance informed the government-in-exile that it had sabotaged the Iraqi mining of the oilfields, and that most of the wells apart from the Wafra field and a few others were safe. An official apparentlyfoolishly broadcast news of this accomplishment. The Iraqis may have heard the broadcast or may have simply decided on their own that they had to test the circuits for real. In any case, they tried to blow up a number of wells at Rawdatain, in the north of Kuwait, as a test. They failed to explode. The Iraqis then checked the charges and discovered the sabotage. Over the next few days, Iraqi army engineers frantically reset the detonators, and then blew the wells. Overall, the operation was still a victory for the Resistance, for while about 720 wells were destroyed, the Iraqis did not have time to reset and blow the other 300.

As I said the article is pretty long but it’s thorough. Check it out [Here]

Photo: Bob Pearson/AFP/Getty Images


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The Kuwait Invasion Anniversary

Posted by Mark

invasion

Since it’s the anniversary of the 1990 Kuwait Invasion I always like to share the important links below.

Free Kuwait
This is a website that focuses on the campaign that was led by Kuwaitis in exile and is loaded with photos and information.

Kuwait Invasion – The Evidence
This is a website that contains over 1,200 pictures taken right after the 1990 invasion as photographic evidence to all the destruction caused by Iraq.

Short movie: Hearts of Palm
Hearts of Palm is a short movie set in August 2nd 1990 and deals with Kuwaiti students living in Miami Florida during the Iraqi Invasion of Kuwait.

The Class of 1990
This is a short documentary about reuniting class mates years after the 1990 Iraqi invasion.

Homemade video from the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait
Video clips taken by a Kuwaiti family during the Iraqi invasion

Desert Storm Photos
Photos taken by soldiers during Desert Storm.

Photo by Adel Al-Yousifi


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The Family Bookshop & Old Salmiya

Posted by Mark

familybookshop

I’m still on vacation and will get back to blogging next week but I was flipping through some old photos when I found the photos below of The Family Bookshop before they closed down.

It really pisses me off how they demolished the whole block of buildings three years ago taking away a lot of great stores as well as the street’s life from the area. Until this day there’s nothing to show for it except a large big hole in the ground.

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They even closed off the sidewalk and parking spots adjacent to the construction site.

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The mall that was supposed to be built in that place pictured above (here’s a video as well) was supposed to be completed this year but as you can see below, construction hasn’t even started.

hole


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