Published June 20th, 2005 - 07:02 GMT

In the latest World Airline Catering Awards to be published by Skytrax, Gulf Air has clinched top position fobr both First and Business Class onboard catering on long-haul intercontinental flights.

The latest accolades follow the strong showing by Gulf Air in the last year’s Skytrax poll, in which the airline was recognised for the Most Improved Performance 2004 as well as achieving the Best On-board Catering (First Class) and the Best Check-In Facilities (Business Class, at Bahrain Airport) awards.

James Hogan, President and Chief Executive of Gulf Air, said: “It was a truly significant step for us to be recognised in the Skytrax awards last year – and it’s been just as significant for us to retain our strong position in key categories in the latest awards.”

“It also demonstrates that our business strategy, an important component of which is the continual improvement of products and services for the business traveller is working."

"This innovation and development is set to continue following endorsement by the Board of our mandate for the next three years. This year, we have invested US$10 million in our premium seats and in-flight entertainment systems, delivering the final piece of the jigsaw to create a definitive world-class product.”

The enhancement of the cabins in the Airbus A330 aircraft has been accompanied by significant enhancements to the dining concept. The menus feature new and contemporary presentation styles, after specialised crew training, and are complemented by a selection of hand-picked, fine vintage wines and other beverages to complete the dining experience.

Traditional dining - either alone or with up to four companions - and the dine-on-demand facility, is complemented by a stand up on-board buffet which offers a full range of drinks and snacks.

Peter Miller, Marketing Director of Skytrax, said: “Gulf Air has taken major strides forward and we are delighted to be able to recognise this.  Our awards are based on the opinions of the people who matter most – the customers.”

The Skytrax Airline Survey is the global measure of passengers’ opinions. It is the only truly global survey, targeting more than 90 passenger nationalities. 

The latest Skytrax awards follow a series of high-profile wins for Gulf Air in 2004, including the Airline Turnaround of the Year Award from the Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation in 2003, and a nomination as a Superbrand in the United Arab Emirates. Gulf Air also received the top honour of a platinum award for the Best Middle East and North Africa Airline at the 2004 and 2005 Arabian Travel Market’s MENA Travel Awards.

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About Gulf Air
Gulf Air was founded in 1950.  Today, it is owned by the Kingdom of Bahrain, Oman and the Emirate of Abu Dhabi and is the only truly pan Gulf carrier in the region. The airline’s network stretches from Europe to Asia and covers 44 cities in 30 countries. The fleet is one of the most modern in the Middle East and comprises 34 aircraft.

The airline is in the last year of a three-year strategic recovery programme, headed by President and Chief Executive, James Hogan. The airline, which is making rapid strides towards regaining profitability in 2005, aims to further evolve by taking its renowned cultural strengths, which have been gained over more than half a century, into a global environment.

The dramatic turnaround in Gulf Air’s fortunes has won international recognition.  In January 2004, The Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA) presented the airline with the prestigious Airline Turnaround of the Year Award for 2003. Gulf Air was also the recipient of the 2003 Platinum Award for the Best Airline in the Middle East and North Africa, recognising the airline’s commitment to service excellence.
Winner - Middle East and North African Platinum Best Airline Travel Award 2004
Winner - Skytrax Most Improved Airline Award 2004
Winner - Skytrax Best First Class Onboard Food Category 2004
Winner - Skytrax Best Business Class Check-in Category 2004
Official Airline and Sponsor of the Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix 2005


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