Sunday, February 27, 2011

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Neighbourhoods - Victory Heights

Located within the Dubai Sports City area, Victory Heights is a unique villa community set in and around the Ernie Els golf course. It is located off Shaikh Mohammed bin Zayed road (old Emirates road) Road adjacent to Dubai's cricket stadium. 

Covering 25 million sq.ft of land, this premium community comprises of 961 villas and townhouses. The community is made up of 8 areas or villages; Estella, Carmen, Esmeralda, Novelia, Oliva, Calida, Morella and Fortuna

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

An open letter to Benihana

Dear Benihana,

I am writing to you to lodge my strong protest against the recent lawsuit that you have brought against Mark, a Kuwait based blogger. I understand that you are now suing Mark for his blog post about his recent visit to your restaurant in Kuwait. In case you are not sure which specific post I am referring to, I have provided the link HERE

I have tried to contact you earlier via the contact link at your website However, after waiting for several days, I realise that you have chosen to not respond to me. Hence I am posting an open letter to you hoping that you will read it and reply to me when you feel it is time to.

Please note that I have no opinion about the food you serve and at this point I really don't care. However, I find the recent legal action that you have taken is an attack on ordinary customers (current and potential) like me. I am shocked to note that you have chosen to sue a customer over what appeared to be a fair and balanced review. 

I am absolutely disappointed to note the legal action that you have taken and will be advising my friends across the world to refrain from patronising your restaurant. I am even more disappointed that you have chosen not to respond to my message sent to you via your website. 

My initial reaction was of shock. I was made to believe that the legal action was probably just a local action by the franchisee. However, your silence on the subject over the last few days suggest that you may be in fact a partner in the decision to sue the blogger. 

Please let me know your stand on the subject. I look forward to your response. Nothing short of dropping the legal action, sacking the GM and apologizing to Mark will satisfy your fans across the world.

In case you have not seen the comments from other bloggers in the Middle East, I have  provided links to only a few of them for your review.

Movies, Pizza, Middle East and Entrepreneurship
Half Eaten Man2ouche

Update 15th Feb, 2011

I have received the following response from Benihana of Tokyo:

Benihana of Tokyo, Inc. is aware that a law suit has been filed by its franchisee in Kuwait, the Las Palmas Restaurant Company, against a popular local blogger. 
Since we have not read nor received a copy of the law suit, it would be inappropriate for us to make a comment at this time.  Until we can review all the facts, there is no way for us to know if the reported legal action has merit.
Nevertheless, the Benihana organization takes pride in the quality of its food and the showmanship of its renowned chefs.   We have been in business since 1964 and have become the largest Japanese themed restaurant chain in the world.  All feedback – both positive and negative are taken very seriously.
The Benihana in Kuwait is the newest restaurant in the chain.  It has been opened a little over a month.  

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Mosque in Satwa

I happened to go down to Satwa this morning for some silly errand when I spotted this simply majestic mosque. The building is a recent one having been constructed a few years ago. But the sheer size of the mosque gives it a majestic feel as compared to some of the other buildings around.

Satwa is an enchanting neighbourhood of Dubai. Every time I drive to Satwa, I feel joy. The place reminds me of what most of Dubai used to be many years ago. It's many cramped up shops offer great value for money. A popular spot in Satwa is Al Dhiyafa Road which is home to a whole range of affordable restaurants in Dubai.

If you liked this post, you may also like this one.

Visit other mosques in Dubai by clicking here

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

O Benihana... why?

During our recent trip to Tokyo, our first session included a 2 hour introduction to the Japanese way of life.  Unlike other cities in the world, knowledge of the local way of life and value system is extremely important. Besides being taught a few common terms and sentences in Japanese, the most important part was the introduction to the Japanese concept of Wa. The concept of Harmony.

While the name Benihana of Tokyo has a Japanese connection and the restaurant serves Japanese food, the guys at Benihana have probably never heard of this Japanese concept.

So it was a shock to me to read that the local franchisee of Benihana of Tokyo has filed suit against Mark, a Kuwait based blogger. Mark has written a pretty much ordinary post about his experience at the newly opened Benihana restaurant in Kuwait City. What seemed to me a fair assessment of the restaurant by the blogger appears to have upset the restaurant owners to the extent of filing a claim for compensation. Sued for saying he didn't like the place? Sued for giving such important feedback? In this modern day world of the internet, what a PR fiasco it is turning out to be!!!

Personally, I will be asking my friends in Kuwait to boycott the restaurant until the local restaurant comes out with a clear public apology for this attack on the general public. This legal suit is not just an attack on the blogger but on the entire community.

Click here to reach Mark's blog.

O Benihana. Why? Why did you do it?

If you'd like to contact Benihana of Tokyo, please click here


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