Malaysia’s new airline – flymojo

Malaysia’s government today announced the establishment of a new airline, called flymojo, and said it has signed a deal with Canadian planemaker Bombardier Inc to buy 20 CS100 aircraft for about US$1.47 billion (RM5.44 billion).

The announcement, made in the presence of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak at the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace (LIMA) exhibition, included an option to buy 20 more aircraft, taking the deal value up to US$2.94 billion.

The new airline will be based out of Johor Baru and Kota Kinabalu.

FlightGlobal reported that flymojo has attained its air operator’s certificate and that it will become a “value” carrier.

The airline will begin flying in the first quarter of 2016 and focus on regional routes, managing director Janardhanan Gopala Krishnan said, without disclosing details about its owners.

“With flymojo’s primary hub at Senai International Airport and secondary hub in Kota Kinabalu, the airline’s ultra-modern fleet of CS100 aircraft will play a key role in improving connectivity between the Peninsula and Sabah and Sarawak, as well as other parts of the region,” said Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Abdul Aziz Kaprawi in a separate statement.

“In addition, as the only airline utilising the Southern Corridor as its headquarters, flymojo will transform Senai into a key regional aviation and logistics hub – augmenting the government’s initiatives in developing Iskandar Malaysia and the Southern Corridor.

“Further strengthening Kota Kinabalu’s standing as a gateway into Malaysia, flymojo will also boost tourism into Sabah and Sarawak.”

“Born of the desire to make air travel a much-anticipated and longed for experience, flymojo is dedicated to providing value, and exceptional customer service that will focus on putting the human touch back into flying,” said flymojo chairman Datuk Seri Alies Anor Abdul, last reported to be Putra World Trade Centre chairman.

“We are confident that our model will resonate deeply with our passengers and that the use of the technologically advanced CSeries aircraft will transform the aviation industry in Malaysia and the region.”

He said flymojo, operated by Fly Mojo Sdn Bhd, is a new airline targeting the travel market within Asean and the regions bordering it.

Meanwhile, Bombardier’s vice president of sales in China and Asia-Pacific Andy Solem said no fixed date has been set for the deliveries, nor a timeframe in place for the firming up of orders.

The Malaysian airline would become the first customer and operator of the CS100 aircraft in the region.

Bombardier now has booked orders and commitments for 603 of its C Series aircraft, which had its first flight in September 2013.

courtesy – therakyatpost

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Kuala Lumpur’s world class mega nightspot to be completed in four months.

IN ABOUT four months, partygoers in the Klang Valley will have a brand new venue where they can let down their hair and dance the night away, when popular nightspot Zouk KL moves into its new home.

The iconic venue, which has been a part of Kuala Lumpur’s club scene for more than a decade, will be moving out of its premises in Jalan Ampang to a spacious 60,000 sq ft lot in TREC, a multi-million ringgit purpose-built entertainment hub.

TREC, which stands for “Taste, Relish, Experience and Celebrate,” is set to be the largest lifestyle and entertainment complex in the country once completed and will cover an area of about six football fields

Located on 2.8ha of land, the mammoth TREC development sees two award-winning architecture firms, Veritas (phase 1) and Unit One (phase 2), joining hands to make it a reality.

Big price tag: The facade of the soon-tobe-completed Zouk KL. Costing RM38mil, it will be the most expensive nightspot in the country.

With an investment of RM323.6mil, TREC — prominently located opposite the upcoming Tun Razak Exchange Centre will definitely stand out amid a sea of office blocks and residences.

“The new Zouk KL is currently 93% close to completion and is well on track to open by July with nine zones within the building.

“We are planning to open the club on a floor by floor basis to keep the excitement alive for our patrons,” said Zouk KL founder Cher Ng.

Ng said the new venue, costing about RM38mil, would make the club, ranked 52nd in the world in 2014 by DJ Mag, the most expensive nightspot built in the country.

More options for fun

Ng and businessman Datuk Douglas Cheng, together with Berjaya Assets Bhd, are the brains behind TREC.

They came up with the idea after years of involvement in the development, entertainment and food industry.

Zouk KL and the two-storey Electric Boulevard are part of TREC’s phase one, which will be the first to open its doors to the public.

According to Ng, who is a prominent figure in the entertainment scene both here and in Singapore, Electric Boulevard was designed to be a bustling complex filled not only with gastro bars, but also boxes for comedians to perform.

During a recent interview, Cheng said 95% of the lots in Electric Boulevard had been taken up, with the majority being popular local brands.

Among the notable tenants are Artebar, Friendscino Restaurant & Bar, TBF & Co, Japanese Gastrobar,The Scene by Pisco, Live House, Mercedez Benz, Mango and Route 66.

The Electric Boulevard houses 35 units ranging in size from 1,400sq ft to 4,000sq ft while the second phase will see an additional 42 units added, ranging from 220sq ft to 3,200sq ft.

Classy: An artist’s impression of the TREC once it is completed.

The second phase will play host to the Hive, Alcove, Terraces and Rhapsody Square and Quad themed zones and is scheduled to open in November.

Ng said the Alcove zone, which would house 12 single-storey units, was dedicated to the younger audience where they intend to give exposure to up-and-coming indie brands alongside cafes and snack bars.

Those looking for a different dining experience should pay a visit to the Hive or the Terraces, which allows patrons to dine in style while enjoying the view.

The Hive comprises a two-block cluster of 23 double semi-detached outlets between 1,600sq ft to 1,800sq ft located on the street level with an al fresco concept.

There will also be 6 rooftop gardens with dual frontage of the Royal Selangor Golf Club golf course and the street.

The Terraces, meanwhile, will feature four luxurious double-storey bungalows that will see guests dining in gourmet restaurants overlooking the picturesque golf course.

Big plans ahead

According to Cheng, TREC is in the Kuala Lumpur Tourism Master Plan where it has been earmarked as one of the designated entertainment and F&B zones.

“Kuala Lumpur lacks an entertainment hub like those in our neighbouring countries such as Singapore and Hong Kong.

“That is why we want to make TREC a place both locals and tourists can visit for a meal or to party,” Cheng said.

He said their vision for TREC was to be the one-stop integrated entertainment district similar to that of Hong Kong’s Lan Kwai Fong, Shanghai’s Xin Tian Di and Singapore’s Clarke Quay.

His team believes traffic will not be an issue in the area as those visiting TREC will have up to three different entry and exit points, with major roads in the city linking to the development.

“Patrons can come into TREC from Jalan Kampung Pandan, Jalan Bukit Bintang, Jalan Cheras, the Sungei Besi Highway, Jalan Tun Razak, the MEX Highway and the Smart Tunnel, hence we anticipate a smooth traffic transition once we get into full swing,” said Cheng.

Coming along: Ng and Cheng explaining the progress of the multi-million-ringgit development during the interview.

There will be plenty of parking as well, as TREC will offer more than a 1,000 parking bays spread throughout a five-storey complex and a sub-basement once it is completed.

Additionally, Cheng said neighbouring building owners had agreed to allow the public to utilise their parking bays after office hours.

Safety is one of the team’s highest priorities but policing such a large area will need a large team of personnel and devices to ensure it is secure at all times.

Cheng said they had been spending months trying out different security systems and said the one they eventually settled on was extremely costly but worth every penny.

Cheng and Ng are definitely looking forward to the launch of TREC, and are already making big plans for the complex’s first-

Courtesy – thestar

oCourtsey ever New Year’s Eve party this year-end.

Malaysia among the World’s 15 Happiest Economies, according to Bloomberg

Malaysia ranked 14 among the world’s 15 happiest economies.

This is based on Bloomberg’s calculation of the “misery index.” This index measures a country’s inflation and unemployment rate to determine the level of happiness or misery among its occupants. Malaysia scored remarkably low (lower score, less misery).

Bloomberg’s interviews with economists established two primary causes for “economic misery”: unemployment and inflation. With a comparatively low unemployment rate of 2.7%, Malaysia outperformed its regional and international counterparts in terms of consumer happiness.

However, Malaysia ranked 31st (out of 51 countries) on the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per-capita calculation, which means that Malaysia will soon reach the living standard of developed nations. Still, ultimately ranked as the 14th lowest on the misery index has placed Malaysia’s inhabitants at a better economic standing than those living in Germany, Hong Kong, and Australia; countries considered to be economic powerhouses.

The findings revealed that there is no necessary correlation between GDP per-capita and consumer happiness. To further reinforce this point: Thailand seized the top spot as the country with the happiest economy, despite being ranked 44th on the GDP per-capita.


Source: Bloomberg Business

Another Award for Apollo Holidays Malaysia

Apollo Holidays Malaysia sdn bhd has been awarded as “Top Aces’s Achiever Travel Agent 2014″ by RW Genting Group Malaysia for their best performance towards the year of 2014. as the award was based on the Indian Market sales performance, Apollo Asia Travel Group Group CEO Mr.Presanth Chandra has Received the prestigious award and thanked all travel partners who has been continuously supporting the Group for its various destinations like Malaysia, Singapore & Thailand, with its own offices in india the group has made its presence vide in largely potential markets like india. he also said as a Thanks giving gesture the group has launched its one of its kind online booking system for its travel partners around the globe named this will make things easy for a travel agents to book packages on all above destinations, as a result they can save time and avoid errors, which will increase the productivity and cost saving. as a volume based market like india such a online tool was very much awaited by an overseas supplier and feedback is coming very positive from the partners.

Top Ace's achiever Travel Agent 2015

Top Ace’s achiever Travel Agent 2014 Award

Year of the Goat off to a good start

Fireworks illuminated the skies across China as millions around Asia ushered in the Year of the Goat on Thursday, kicking off festivities with an annual televised gala that got a thumbs down on social media for heavy Communist Party propaganda.

Wednesday night, or Lunar New Year’s eve, was marked by loud booms as people shot off firecrackers in various parts of the country, filling the air with the pungent smell of explosives.

Injuries involving fireworks in Beijing during the first hour of the New Year, however, declined 24% from last year as sales of the pyrotechnics dropped 34%, the official Xinhua news agency reported, citing local authorities.

But the detonations worsened Beijing’s notoriously bad air with “heavy pollution” reported at midnight, Xinhua added.

inside no 10Indoors, hundreds of millions of Chinese tuned in for the annual televised Spring Festival gala, which lasts for about four hours and is broadcast nationwide, featuring singing, dancing, skits and comedy performances.

Spring Festival, which sees Chinese pack flights, trains and automobiles to return to their hometowns for family reunions, is the Chinese name for the holidays.

Social media users, however, complained Thursday that the show was ruined by Communist Party sermons to root out corruption, which has been the pet policy of President Xi Jinping since he became head of the party and government.

The performance included comic dialogues criticising the endemic culture of bribe-taking.

“It was the most disgusting Spring Festival gala,” read a post on microblog Sina Weibo, a Chinese version of Twitter. “It was just for the state leaders, not for common people.”

“The gala is a political performance, the so-called anti-corruption-themed performances are for licking the shoes” of state leaders, another user said.

Ahead of the festivities, Xi proffered a Lunar New Year’s greeting to a gathering of more than 2,000 people inside Beijing’s ornate Great Hall of the People.

“We are proud of our great country and we are proud of our great people,” he said in the speech on Tuesday, which was also attended by other top leaders, including Premier Li Keqiang, Xinhua said.

In Shanghai, China’s bustling commercial capital, Chinese New Year celebrations were toned down with events cancelled and numbers of people limited at tourist spots after a stampede killed 36 people seven weeks earlier.

inside no 10.1Revellers, many of them young women, were trampled to death during a stampede at the popular historic riverfront, known as the Bund, 31 December.

The timing of the traditional New Year varies annually based on the lunar calendar which follows the cycles of the moon. It was celebrated last year on January 31, which marked the Year of the Horse. The lunar New Year’s Eve for the Year of the Goat (also called Year of the Sheep) was celebrated 18 February.

Traditional astrology in China attaches different animal signs to each lunar year in a cycle of 12 years.

Lunar New Year is also celebrated in other parts of Asia, including Hong Kong, Taiwan, North and South Korea, Mongolia and among ethnic Chinese communities throughout Southeast Asia.

Fortune tellers in Hong Kong said that the Year of the Goat, should be calmer in general than the previous Year of the Horse, which was characterised by catastrophic international air accidents, brutal terror attacks, global political upheaval, a resurgent Ebola virus and war.

In Taiwan, President, Ma Ying-jeou, prayed for “safety, health and happiness for the country” in the coming year while attending a religious ceremony in New Taipei city late Wednesday.

Singapore, a largely ethnic Chinese city-state, ushered in the New Year with a countdown party in the heart of Chinatown, Wednesday, culminating in a fireworks display at midnight.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, 63, was discharged from hospital Wednesday in time for the Lunar New Year celebrations after undergoing surgery for prostate cancer on Monday.

The Spring Festival signals a travel boom, with Chinese airlines putting on charter flights for the holiday period.

Qunar, a Chinese online travel service, announced a 350% jump in overseas flight bookings for the Lunar New Year holiday period in 2015 compared with last year. Southeast Asia were the top destinations but there have been sizeable increases in travel to the US.

© 1994-2015 Agence France-Presse

Malaysia Declares MH370 an Accident, but Search Still Continues

On Thursday, Malaysia officially declared the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 an accident. The search for the plane will still go one, but, in the meantime, the airline will proceed to pay compensation to the victims’ families.

According to a report by Reuters, the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) released a statement officially declaring the disappearance of the flight as an accident.

“We officially declare Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 an accident … and that all 239 of the passengers and crew on-board MH370 are presumed to have lost their lives,” Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) director-general Azharuddin Abdul Rahman said in the statement.

MH 370 disappeared from radar on March 8 last year. The plane was carrying 239 passengers and crew.

The search for the missing plane is still ongoing in the Indian Ocean.

Ten-year master plan to boost tourism in KL

THE Kuala Lumpur Tourism Master Plan 2015-2025 is expected to spur the capital’s growth as an emerging tourist destination.

Kuala Lumpur mayor Datuk Seri Ahmad Phesal Talib said the city was Malaysia’s top generator in tourism spending.

“We are seeing record numbers of visitors growing on a yearly basis and they are spending more time and money to discover the city.

“The overall number of visitors has increased by 18% over the last 10 years,” he said in his speech at the launch of the masterplan at Sasana Kijang in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday.

Ahmad Phesal said for the tourism sector to grow, there was a need for a concerted, well-coordinated approach to manage it.

“The masterplan gives guidance to the fledging tourism industry.

“It is a 10-year strategic agenda and action plan that is prepared by experts in both the public and private sectors.

“We want both sectors to be involved to make its implementation a success,” he added.

Ahmad Phesal added that the aim was to articulate the industry’s interests clearly, not only as a guide for the tourism sector itself, but also to explain to others where tourism in the capital city was heading over the next 10 years and what help was required.

He said the plan identified and developed strategic directions and an action plan for the tourism sector to spur both immediate and long-term growth.

“Through the masterplan, we hope to encourage innovation and allow existing tourism operators as well as potential investors to identify business ventures,” he said.

Ahmad Phesal added that a structured approach was undertaken by Roland Berger Strategy Consultants to formulate the masterplan.

“Input and comments from more than 150 stakeholders were obtained through workshops and interviews. Issues, challenges, new opportunities and 200 ideas were identified,” he said.

The masterplan articulates Kuala Lumpur’s vision to be the top destination for exciting and diverse urban experiences delivered through world-class infrastructure and services.

It contains 47 initiatives across 10 tourism segments and enablers including culture, heritage, places of interest, shopping, entertainment, nature and adventure, luxury travel, sports as well as medical and wellness.

The masterplan has identified five key opportunities that can drive growth of the tourism industry in Kuala Lumpur.

They are to fully capture the demand for distinct multicultural experiences, strengthen premier shopping destination position, establish Kuala Lumpur as a nature and adventure tourism destination, enhance the city’s position as the preferred value-for-money business, education and medical destination as well as ensure provision of world class infrastructure and tourism products that are well maintained.

With the implementation of the plan, Kuala Lumpur’s tourism industry has the potential to nearly double the number of foreign tourist arrivals to 16 million and tourism receipts in the city is expected to achieve RM79bil by 2025.

The average length of stay of visitors to Kuala Lumpur is expected to increase from 3.1 nights currently to 5.5 nights in 2025.

Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor who launched the masterplan, said several issues needed to be addressed to attract tourists to the city.

“For example, Chinatown is not Chinatown anymore. It is now filled with Bangladeshi and Nepalese as locals are subletting their business licences to them,” he pointed out.

The masterplan can be viewed at

Kuala Lumpur launches two new tourism initiatives

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – Kuala Lumpur is expected to receive 16 million foreign tourists annually by 2025, with an expected growth of 4% each year, Kuala Lumpur mayor Datuk Seri Ahmad Phesal Talib said.

To ensure tourists experience the best the city can offer during their stay, Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) has launched two new tourism initiatives — the KL Tourism Ambassador program and the KL Tourist Guidebook.

“Kuala Lumpur is voted one of the New7Wonders Cities of the World in an international survey. To maintain a good global reputation, we need to improve and enhance our products, services and infrastructure.

“The KL Tourism Ambassador Project (KLAP) is a collaboration between DBKL and 1Malaysia for Youth (iM4U), in which 40 youths volunteer as KL Tourism Ambassadors and have a deeper involvement in the tourism industry,” Ahmad Phesal said during the launch at the Kuala Lumpur Library.

He added that the program was modeled after similar programs implemented in Melbourne, Vancouver, Berlin and Hong Kong.

The international voting was conducted by the Zurich-based non-governmental organisation New7Wonders Foundation which, according to its website, has the aim “to create a global memory by garnering participation worldwide.”

Each clad in a red vest, white cap and a Visit KL bag, the ambassadors can be found in high-traffic tourist areas all over Kuala Lumpur to assist tourists with information on attractions, general directions, events and dining, as well as suggest options of places to see and things to do.

These volunteers will represent Kuala Lumpur in promoting tourism opportunities and attributes in a positive manner while enhancing the visitor’s experience.

iM4U chief operating officer Azlan Rudy Malik said the ambassadors had gone through screening and interview processes to qualify.

“To prepare for duty, the ambassadors underwent a six-day training program to arm them with the right skills and attitude,” he said, adding that their service period ranged between three and six months.

Meanwhile, the KL Tourist Guidebook which was also launched at the event, is an effort by DBKL to enhance the overall consistency, depth and experience delivered by tour guides to tourists.

“We collaborated with the KL Tourist Guides Association to develop the 150-page book to provide comprehensive facts, descriptions and anecdotes of tourists spots in the nation’s capital.

“Being the first of its kind in Malaysia, the KL Tourist Guidebook is designed to be a complete manual for tourists and has been categorised according to six strategic zones, namely City Centre, Wangsa Maju-Maluri, Sentul Menjalara, Bukit Jalil-Seputeh, Bandar Tun Razak and Sungai Besi to enable the user to explore the city with ease,” said Ahmad Phesal.

Also present during the launch were AirAsia X chief executive officer Azran Osman-Rani, Bumitra president Datuk Syed Mohd Razif Syed Yasin, Pacific Asia Travel Association (Pata) life member and KL Tourism Development Council co-chairman Tunku Datuk Seri Iskandar Tunku Abdullah, DBKL deputy director-general (management) Datuk Normah Malik, Visit Malaysia Year 2014 secretariat general manager Nor Yahati Awang, Roland Berger Malaysia managing partner Anthonie Versluis, Malaysian Tourist Guide Council president Jimmy Leong Wie Kong and KL Tourist Guides Association chairman Wong Hing Tuck.

The KL Tourist guidebook will be available from this month and will be translated into other languages to facilitate non-English speaking tourist guides and tourists. It will also be made available on the DBKL-managed official website for the city,


PUTRAJAYA, 29 December 2014 – The Grand Launch of the Malaysia Year of Festivals 2015 or MyFest 2015, scheduled for 10 January 2015, has been postponed to a later date.

The Minister of Tourism and Culture, Malaysia YB Dato’ Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz said it was due to unexpected circumstances such as the heavy flood in several states and the missing Air Asia Indonesia airplane. The Ministry had also expressed sympathy for the flood victims and the family members of passengers onboard the airplane that was reported missing.

“The Ministry of Tourism and Culture had earlier cancelled its Christmas Open House celebration which was scheduled for 27 December 2014 at Pavilion, Kuala Lumpur. The event was instead replaced with 1MOTAC Flood Relief Charity Event which managed to raise donations totalling RM22,000 and other essential items for flood victims,” he added.

The tourism industry had also been affected as Kelantan, Terengganu, Pahang, Kedah, Johor and Negeri Sembilan were among the states which had recorded the highest number of tourist arrivals in 2013.

However, Dato’ Nazri was optimistic that the states affected by the flood would recover and had pledged that the Ministry and its agencies would increase tourism promotion of these states overseas.

MyFest 2015 is a national mission that was announced by the Prime Minister of Malaysia YAB Dato’ Seri Najib Tun Razak in his 2015 budget speech. The campaign is a follow up to Visit Malaysia Year 2014 and aims to maintain Malaysia’s position as a major destination of choice for tourists worldwide and to attract 29.4 million tourist arrivals with tourism receipts of RM89 billion.

Themed “Endless Celebrations”, MyFest 2015 will focus on promoting the country’s diverse cultures, heritage, festivals and attractions.


For more information, please contact Corporate Communications Unit, Ministry of Tourism and Culture at 03-8000 8000 or email

Tata, Singapore Air venture Vistara to take off on January 9

Singapore Airlines Ltd’s Indian joint venture with the Tata conglomerate, Vistara, will start flying from January 9, the airlines said.

Based in New Delhi, the full service Vistara will begin operations with a fleet of new Airbus A320-200s with 148 seats, Tata SIA Airlines Ltd said in a statement late on Thursday.

Vistara will offer flights to Mumbai and Ahmedabad initially, it said.

The announcement comes in the middle of a particularly testing week for the airlines industry in India, with budget carrier SpiceJet struggling for survival.

The Tata Group and Singapore Airlines announced the plan to launch Vistara on September 19, adding a deep-pocketed player to a fast-growing but competitive Indian aviation sector where most operators lose money.