Published September 1st, 2005 - 05:57 GMT

Qatar Airways, the Official Airline for the 15th Asian Games Doha 2006, and the Doha Asian Games Organising Committee (DAGOC), today unveiled the first Qatar Airways Airbus A330 themed aircraft to promote the biggest ever sporting event to be staged in the region.

With 15 months to go before Doha hosts the sporting extravaganza, Qatar Airways has taken delivery of the first of its Doha 2006 Games branded aircraft, fresh off the Airbus production line in the French city of Toulouse.

The new livery features distinctive vibrant colours and imagery created specifically for the Doha 2006 Games which will be difficult to miss in many of the 66 destinations served by the award-winning Doha-based airline. There are two distinct designs created on the next seven A330s that will fly in the new colours with deliveries taking place over the next nine months until May 2006.

The first Qatar Airways branded Airbus A330-300 features images from two of the 39 sports featured in the Games. One side of the tail has an image of an athlete – the other a cyclist. Both the tail and rear section of the fuselage are painted in distinct bright colours of yellow and orange.

The design uses elements of texture and gradient that comprise the  'Look of the Games' which takes inspiration from Doha being a city of contrasts - old and new, sand and sea, preservation and progress.

‘Let the Spirit Move You’ are words inscribed on the fuselage to promote the spirit of the Games in which athletes from across the Asian continent will compete for fame and glory next year. Qatar Airways’ partnership logo with the Doha 2006 Games is emblazoned across both engines which are painted bright orange, and on either side of the forward section of the aircraft.

The newest A330, which enters commercial service today, is Qatar Airways’ 41st aircraft to join its young and modern fleet of all-Airbus jets with each of the new A330s being configured in two classes of up to 30 seats in Business and 275 in Economy – the latter offering seats that convert into flat beds. The next A330-Games aircraft to be delivered during September will feature the second branded design of striking blue with the Asian Games mascot, ‘Orry’ emblazoned on both sides of the tail. Orry is the ambassador for both the Games and Qatar, representing the commitment and enthusiasm of the people of Qatar while preserving the cultural heritage and hospitality of the host city.

Four aircraft will be painted in the striking yellow and orange colours, while the other three will be in blue livery.

The Doha 2006 Games will welcome thousands of athletes from 45 countries across Asia and tens of thousands of spectators from around the world for the two-week event, being staged in Doha from 1-15 December 2006.

Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker said the new branded aircraft will be ‘flying icons’ that will raise awareness of Qatar and the feast of sporting entertainment in store when they take to the skies around the world over the next 15 months.

“We are extremely delighted to be the official partner of the 15th Asian Games which promises to be an exciting two weeks of sporting entertainment for the people of Qatar, Asia and rest of the world,” he said.

“Our new Airbus A330s will fly around the world in two distinct colour schemes helping promote the Games, which is by far the biggest sporting event ever to be staged in Qatar and, indeed, the region.”

“We look forward to flying thousands of visitors and athletes to Doha for the Games and experience our unique Five Star hospitality with the highest levels of service and personal attention onboard our flights.”

Added Al Baker: “Between now and the Games, we will work closely with the Doha Asian Games Organising Committee to aggressively promote the event, injecting the dedication and enthusiasm we are renowned for, to make the Games one to remember.”

Abdulla Khalid Al-Qahtani, Director General of DAGOC, said: “Today’s function is a testimony of the great support we are receiving from our prestige partner Qatar Airways to organise the best ever Asian Games. The backing we are receiving indicates the community is receptive to the importance of the Games and marking Qatar’s place on international events in line with the national development plan.

“The alliance with Qatar Airways will surely enable us to deliver the highest possible standards of airline service to  athletes, officials, spectators and media representatives participating in the 15th Asian Games who will be treated with the highest regard to quality and customer service upon boarding Qatar Airways aircraft,” Abdulla continued.

"The branded aircraft will be one of the important means to promote the Games and reflects the great relationship we have developed with our partner in various fields. Our pride for the Games will now fly high over many cities Qatar Airways serves across the Asian continent.”

The 15th Asian Games Doha 2006 is poised to be the world’s second biggest multi-sport event. It is the first time the Games will  be held in the Arab world, the first to include 39 sports, the first to feature 423 events and the first to welcome 10,500 athletes and team officials representing, for the first time, 45 countries.

From its hub in Doha, Qatar Airways has developed a global network of destinations, covering Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Indian Subcontinent and the Far East. The airline currently flies to 66 destinations with Nairobi and Berlin being added to its international network this winter.

Destinations served in Asia by Qatar Airways include Osaka, Beijing, Seoul, Shanghai, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta, Singapore, Yangon, Manila, Cebu, Delhi, Mumbai, Cochin, Hyderabad, Trivandrum, Colombo, Kathmandu, Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar and Dhaka. Qatar Airways plans to fly to 80 destinations worldwide by the end of 2006.

The airline’s state-of-the-art A330s offer the latest in in-flight comfort and amenities. The A330 is the backbone of Qatar Airways’ long-haul fleet to destinations as far as Europe, South Africa and the Far East with the aircraft equipped with a fully interactive award-winning Audio Video On Demand inflight entertainment system in every seat giving passengers a wide choice of movies, documentaries, comedy, drama and children’s programmes.

Each seat is equipped with individual TV screens of nine-inches in Economy and 15-inches in Business. Passengers can start, forward, rewind and pause programming at the time of their choice to give them greater functionality, flexibility and control of their inflight entertainment. The system also features an extensive list of CDs and radio channels for passengers to listen to.


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