ABU DHABI JOINS GLOBAL GREENINGS FOR IRELAND CELEBRATIONS
Jumeirah at Etihad Towers and Burj Al Arab light up emerald green for Ireland’s National Day
16 March 2015 – Abu Dhabi, UAE: Representing Abu Dhabi, Jumeirah at Etihad Towers has joined global greening initiative by lighting up in Ireland’s famous colour for national day celebrations. It is the first time that the UAE capital has had a major landmark join the global greening and is a mark of the strengthening ties between Ireland and the UAE.
Photo captions: (from left to right) Ray Gammell, Patrick Hennessy, Stefan Fuchs and Amanda Burns pose for an image during the inaugural greening of Jumeirah at Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi.
Irish Ambassador, H.E. Patrick Hennessy, Jumeirah at Etihad Towers General Manager, Stefan Fuchs, Etihad Airways Chief People and Performance Officer, Ray Gammell and Tourism Ireland General Manager Middle East & Asia, Amanda Burns gathered in Abu Dhabi to mark the greening of the Etihad Towers and begin Abu Dhabi’s Irish celebrations.
Tourism Ireland’s annual greenings have grown from strength to strength. A number of new landmarks have joined the 2015 celebrations includingthe Colosseum, the Sacré-Cœur Basilica, the Grand Ole Opry, the famous Porte de Bourgogne in Bordeaux, the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge in Nashville, the Town Halls of Munich and Bamberg, the National Sanctuary of Cristo Rei in Lisbon, the Fram polar exploration ship in Oslo, as well as City Hall in Tbilisi, Georgia.
The new sites will join ‘old favourites’ which have gone green in previous years – including Burj Al Arab, Niagara Falls, the London Eye, the Allianz Arena in Munich, the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the Sky Tower in Auckland, Cibeles Fountain and Palace in Madrid and one of last year’s newcomers, the Sleeping Beauty castle at Disneyland® in Paris. And, once again, Chicago will be ‘going all out’ with greenings across the city.
Ray Gammell, Chief People & Performance Officer at Etihad Airwaysrepresented the proud connections that Etihad Airways has with Ireland. In 2012, Etihad signed a five year GAA sponsorship and also sponsored the Etihad skyline at Croke Park. Following that,Etihad Airways took an equity stake in Aer Lingus and signed an MoU with College Ireland Aviation Services that involved Emirati aviation students receiving training in Ireland. The double daily flights to Dublin that Etihad launched in 2014 have helped increase tourism from the GCC to Ireland and is a trend that is set to grow over the coming years.
Tourism Ireland General Manager Middle East & Asia, Amanda Burns commented: "St Patrick's Day traditionally marks the start of the tourism season to the island of Ireland and Tourism Ireland is delighted that one of Abu Dhabi's most iconic buildings, Jumeirah at Etihad Towers, is celebrating Ireland's national day with us.
“We are also very pleased to have Etihad Airways here to support us and I am sure they will be flying even greater numbers of holidaymakers from this region and beyond to the island of Ireland this year, where they will experience a truly unique, authentic and memorable holiday with the warmth and hospitality that the Emerald Isle is famed for.”
Jumeirah at Etihad Towers General Manager, Stefan Fuchs commented: “We are pleased to be part of the greening initiative as the first hotel in Abu Dhabi. It is a tribute to a long and successful relationship between the emirate and Ireland.”
Ireland is growing in popularity with travellers from the GCC region. CSO figures for 2014 announced that arrivals to Dublin from Asia and the Middle East markets grew by 13% when compared with 2013.
Tourism Ireland estimates that approximately 45,000 - 55,000 visitors from the GCC came to the island of Ireland in 2013, representing a significant growth of 8% from the previous year. There is every indication of continuing this success into 2015.
Twitter handle: #GoGreen4PatricksDay
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is the island of Ireland’s largest indigenous industry; responsible for in excess of 4% of GNP in the Republic of Ireland and employing approximately 200,000 people.
• In 2014, we welcomed an estimated 8.6 million overseas visitors to the island of Ireland, delivering revenue of about €4.26 billion. Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is www.Ireland.com, available in ten different language versions for over 30 individual markets around the world. In 2014, Ireland.com attracted about 14.25 million visitors.