The Lexus LC500

Post by Mark

Since the weather is getting better I’m going to be reviewing cars again, mostly because there are a bunch of new cars I’ve been wanting to try. The Lexus LC500 was one of them, I hadn’t seen many on the road, maybe just two or three this past year and so it had always intrigued me. So I got in touch with the dealer and they lent me the car for five days to enjoy.

Right off the bat, you’ll notice how gorgeous this car is, it has an incredible rear end that looks like something from the future. As soon as I drove the car out of the dealership I could feel people checking out the car, and I really think its because of its futuristic look. The dealer used to have a yellow LC500 on display and before picking up the test drive car I was praying I wouldn’t end up with it. Luckily I got the best color combination I could have hoped for, a dark grey exterior with a maroon and black interior. The dark grey color helped with the futuristic look and made it super photogenic in front of the camera.

The LC500 has a 5.0L V8 engine sending 471HP to the rear wheels with a 10-speed automatic transmission. The car is pretty fast but what caught me off-guard the most was the exhaust sound. When you put the car into sports mode it starts sounding like an American muscle car, it was very un-Lexus like which is why I loved it. Sadly the soundproofing on the Lexus is so good, you really need to lower your windows to fully appreciate the sound. Lexus is still going to be Lexus and so the interior of the LC500 was, of course, comfortable, super quiet and just a wonderful place to be in. I had the car for five days and I just felt so chill driving it around. Even though Lexus are marketing the LC500 as a sports car (at least locally), it didn’t feel like one and I didn’t drive it like one. For me, the LC500 is a car that would take me from point A to B in style and comfort. Other than the infotainment system (more on that in a bit), the interior of the car is a fantastic place to be in during traffic. The car also comes standard with a lot of features like pre-crash safety system, lane keeping assist, dynamic radar cruise control, parking assist, a smart entry and start system, as well as a pretty kick-ass Mark Levinson sound system with 13 speakers.

But, like other Lexus’s, the LC500 has one major flaw and it’s the infotainment system. The interface not only looks outdated but is outdated without having modern features like Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. If that wasn’t bad enough, the way you interact with the infotainment system is extremely clumsy using their touchpad which isn’t very intuitive, responsive nor practical when driving. I hated it. It’s really the only major issue I had with the car but one that would most likely drive me mad if I had to interact with it on a day to day basis. If all you want from your infotainment is to stream music via Bluetooth, then you’re going to be fine with a Lexus. But, if you want a visually pleasing interface that will run apps from your phone, you’re going to be extremely disappointed.

The Lexus LC500 starts at KD32,000 which I find mind-boggling because the car looks like it’s worth so much more. It really is a very hot looking car which is why I’ve been so eager to drive one. If you’re interested in test driving the LC500 yourself, the dealership has a car available. For more information, check out the LC500 product page on the Lexus Kuwait website [Here]

On a side note, I have a quick question. What do you want more from these car posts? I generally don’t try to go into too many details since I know a lot of people aren’t into cars, but what else would you want to see? Would a video walk around of the car and interior be something you’d like to see for example? Let me know in the comments.

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The IMPROVengers are Back!

Post by Mark

The Staged in Kuwait IMPROV comedy night is back again and will take place at the end of this month. They’re my favorite local comedy show and if you’ve never been to any of their shows you definitely should. I actually wasn’t going to post about the show until next week, but I just noticed most of the tickets are already sold. So if yo want to check them out, you should probably hurry up and get your tickets today. For more information, click [Here]

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Qatar Is First Gulf State to Offer Expat Permanent Residency

Post by Mark

To be eligible, residents born in Qatar must have lived in the country for 10 years, while those born abroad would need to have lived there 20 years, according to the decree. A passing command of the Arabic language, proof of sufficient income and sound legal standing are also required.

Permanent residents will be able to establish commercial companies without needing a local partner and will be able to take part in national economic projects. Permanent residency permits can be withdrawn in certain cases. [Source]

When expats like me who’ve been living in Kuwait all their lives talk about wanting some kind of benefit or advantage over an expat who’s been in Kuwait for just a week, this is what we really want. We want the ability to live in Kuwait without requiring a sponsor, without having to renew our residency every year and the ability to purchase a home or open a business if we want to. We’re not asking for the passport or a social security check every month.

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You Can’t 3D Print Yourself!

Post by Mark

So yesterday I posted about how you could 3D print yourself at the new Best Electronics store in Boulevard. Well, I spoke too soon since you can’t anymore.

From what I’ve managed to understand, due to religious reasons Best have been told to stop the 3D printing. I thought it might have been fake news at first but last night I passed by the store from outside and noticed they had removed all the 3D printed figurines from the display. Oh well…

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Hello Sony A7 III!

Post by Mark

Earlier this year I sold all my Nikon photography gear because I wasn’t really using them. They were large and heavy so I spent more time using my iPhone and compact but full-frame Sony RX1 camera instead. That setup turned out to be fine for 80% of my needs, but over the past few months, I realized how much of a handicap it was by not owning a DSLR with changeable lenses. So I started looking at compact mirrorless cameras, specifically the Sony A7 series and the newly announced Nikon Z and Canon R series. Mirrorless cameras had similar capabilities as much larger DSLR’s, but they’re a lot more compact. I was kinda leaning towards the Nikon Z mirrorless camera, until I found out that AAB World had recently become official Sony camera dealers. That news made my decision easier, I was getting the Sony A7 III.

Full disclosure, I have a long-standing relationship with AAB World. They’ve been very active with me and the blog over the years and they’ve lent me lenses and camera gear to review whenever I wanted and also hooked me up with discounts. I’m a huge fan.

I’ve had the Sony A7 III for around two weeks and I love it so far. My aim with the A7 III was for it to play two roles, I needed it to be compact when I needed something small and portable, but I also needed a full frame camera I could attach various lenses too˙. The A7 III has fulfilled both those requirements. First thing I did after buying the camera was to get the compact Sony 35mm F/2.8 prime lens for the A7 III. With the 35mm lens, the A7 III was not that much larger than my RX1 (check the picture above).

The second lens I picked up was the Sony 12-24mm F/4 lens and now I’m planning to get the Sony 24-105mm F/4 and Sony 70-200mm F/4 lenses. I’m going with F/4 lenses and not brighter F/2.8 lenses because the F/4 versions are lighter, smaller, cheaper and nearly as good for my needs.

The A7 III feels really great in my hands and I’m loving all its features and capabilities. I can understand why many are calling it the best camera of 2018. I’ll be posting a more comprehensive review after I get the rest of the lenses and shoot some more with the camera. But first impressions, the A7 III is great, it’s so good that I’ve actually decided to sell my Sony RX1, something I told myself I wouldn’t do.

If you’re interested in the A7 III, AAB World are currently out of stock but they should getting another shipment soon. Here are their preorder links on their website:

Sony A7 III (Body only) – KD679
Sony A7 III (Kit including lens) – KD749

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3D Print Yourself!

Post by Mark

Best Electronics have a new service which uses tech by the company Doob to 3D scan your full body and then print you out as a miniature figurine. The result looks pretty realistic and they have a lot of different examples on display for you to check out. I held one figurine and it felt light and fragile, so I wouldn’t give it to a kid to play with, they’re more for displaying not for playing with.

Although it’s pretty cool, especially if you end up getting a 3D scan of you and your friends together, there are two big negatives. The first is that they print these figurines in Germany, which means you need to wait around three weeks to see the results. The second thing is the cost. They can print different sizes figurines but the smallest one which is shorter than your iPhone costs KD40, while the largest size is KD230. If you and your friends get a group shot you have to pay per individual. So if you’re four guys and you want to print out the smallest size that’s 4 x KD40 for one copy.

If you’re interested to check this out, the “Doob” booth is located in Best Electronics at Boulevard in Salmiya. [Google Maps]

Thanks Sabah

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Events are Back!

Post by Mark

As you probably noticed I haven’t been posting the weekend events list for the past couple of months and thats because everything stops during the summer. But, now that the weather is starting to cool down, things are starting to happen again.

I just added a bunch of events to the event page and will keep adding more as I find out about them so check them out. [Link]

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Movies Showing in Kuwait this Weekend

Post by Mark

Screenshot from The Predator

The movies below are now showing at Cinescape, Grand Cinemas, Sky Cinemas and VOX:

New This Weekend:
Destination Wedding (6.1)
Final Score (5.5)
Juliet, Naked (7.0)
Luis & the Aliens (6.0)
Peter Pan: The Quest for the Never Book (N/A)
The Predator (6.9)

Other Movies Showing Now:
Alpha (7.0)
Boonie Bears: The Big Top Secret (6.0)
Christopher Robin (7.9)
Mile 22 (6.6)
Mission: Impossible – Fallout (8.9)
Peppermint (6.0)
Reprisal (7.4)
Slender Man (3.0)
The Darkest Minds (5.5)
The Equalizer 2 (7.1)
The Little Mermaid (4.6)
The Meg (6.8)
The Nun (7.0)

The movies below are also now showing at the Scientific Center IMAX theater:

Movies Showing Now:
Amazon Adventure 3D (6.6)
Amazing Mighty Micro Monsters 3D (7.4)
Hurricane 3D (7.0)
Oceans: Our Blue Planet (7.4)

Numbers in brackets refer to the IMDB rating at time of publishing.
★ is for movies I’m interested in.

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Sponsored: MyHome – Your app for home maintenance

Post by Sponsor

We’ve all been there. The AC starts leaking in the middle of a humid day; you need the new apartment cleaned before you move in; or you just can’t figure out why the power keeps cutting every 5 minutes.

Now what?

You can spend 20 minutes looking through promoted listings in the newspaper, and another 15 minutes trying to get a hold of someone over the phone.

Or you can use the MyHome app instead — and have your home maintenance provider assigned and on their way to you in under 5 minutes.

MyHome makes everything about finding the right maintenance solution faster, simple than anything you’ve ever tried before. Here’s how:

1. Professionals You Can Trust

MyHome only connects you with professionals that enjoy a great reputation and have several years of technical experience in their respective fields. Every service provider that’s part of the MyHome network has already been vetted for quality of service and must adhere to a strict standard of behaviour and ethics. We guarantee you’ll get the kind of help you can trust, every time.

2. Fast Response Time

Remember when you had to wait for a full day before your AC’s maintenance company could send for a technician? Well, with MyHome, you can cut that time down from one day to 30 minutes MyHome gets your problem fixed ASAP by pairing you with the right service provider in as fast as 30 seconds.

3. Clear & Simple

Long gone are the days of haggling over every little service. MyHome gives you the power to choose your exact problem, with the price clearly listed for you to pay upfront. Or, if you’d like to have a technician come over and assess, it’ll only cost you 5 KD (the 5 KD will then be credited to any additional works).

In need to book multiple services on the same day? MyHome’s got you covered there too – select all the different services you need directly on the app and leave the rest up to us.

4. Your Privacy = Our Priority

MyHome lets you keep full control over your data throughout your use of the mobile app. You can choose to delete all of your stored data with the MyHome app or request a copy of your stored data whenever you like. As a GDPR compliant application, MyHome places the safety and privacy of each user as a top priority.

MyHome currently provides the following home maintenance services:

– Cleaning
– Air Conditioning
– Plumbing
– Electrician
– Satellite
– Painting
– Cameras
– Appliances
– Palm Tree
– Gardening
– Pest Control

Click here to download the MyHome iPhone app, or get it on Google Play here.

If you’d like to learn more about how MyHome works check out our website, and follow us on Instagram @MyHome_app for an up close look at what we do!

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Kuwait – A Place That Makes Living Easy

Post by Mark

With all these recent negative articles on Kuwait here is one that’s good. BBC Travel shared a list of five places that make living easy and Kuwait made the list. The five places in no particular order are:

Honolulu, United States
Budapest, Hungary
Kuwait City, Kuwait
Auckland, New Zealand
Taipei, Taiwan

Not bad right? Check out their article [Here]

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