Jeddah hotels, restaurants cook up ways to reduce food waste

Alfolk and Al-Mirkaz Ramadan tents are among the experiences that prioritize sustainability through practices such as reducing food waste and promoting environmental consciousness. (Supplied)
Short Url
Updated 21 March 2024
Follow

Jeddah hotels, restaurants cook up ways to reduce food waste

  • A range of outlets are offering iftar and sahoor experiences with sustainability on the menu

JEDDAH: Many hotels and restaurants in Jeddah are placing a strong emphasis on sustainability practices to make Ramadan more eco-friendly.

The outlets are actively working toward reducing food waste and promoting environmental consciousness throughout the month.

At The Ritz-Carlton, the theme for Ramadan at The Palace is “Bab Al-Bahr,” meaning “Gate to the Sea,” drawing inspiration from the hotel’s proximity to the sea. The gates of the hotel open directly to the sea, embodying the essence of its coastal location. Guests can look forward to luxurious iftar and sahoor experiences in the grand ballrooms, featuring nine live cooking stations offering a wide selection of appetizers, salads, main courses, desserts, and a dedicated mocktail station.

HIGHLIGHTS

• The Ritz-Carlton is making efforts to minimize food wastage by collaborating with Etaam, a local charitable organization focused on distributing food to the needy.

• The Hotel Galleria Jeddah has embraced cost-effective practices and is currently testing food waste monitoring systems.

• Bab Al-Balad at Rosewood Hotel’s Soleil restaurant offers an iftar buffet experience that captures the essence of Ramadan and Saudi heritage.

General Manager Peter Katusak-Huzsvar highlighted how the hotel strikes a balance between creating a festive atmosphere and maintaining elegance with the Ramadan menu. He told Arab News: “The Ritz-Carlton brand’s inherent elegance seamlessly intertwines with the richness of Ramadan traditions at our stunning property, aptly referred to as The Palace. This title perfectly aligns with our commitment to providing a regal and sophisticated atmosphere during Ramadan.

“We skillfully strike a balance, ensuring a Ramadani ambiance while upholding the utmost sophistication in our Ramadan offerings … Our meticulously curated stations reflect this harmonious blend, promising a celebration that transcends culinary delight into an exquisite journey of refined indulgence.” 

Katusak-Huzsvar also mentioned the hotel’s dedication to sustainability in its culinary practices. Collaborating with Etaam, a local charitable organization focused on distributing food to the needy, The Ritz-Carlton is making efforts to minimize food wastage. All untouched food is carefully preserved and promptly collected by the Etaam team to benefit those in need. Additionally, the culinary team passionately advocates for sustainability by prioritizing locally sourced products and ingredients, reducing the environmental footprint while delivering a dining experience that is both conscious and delightful.




At The Ritz-Carlton, all untouched food is carefully preserved and promptly collected by the charity organization Etaam to benefit those in need. (Supplied)

Similarly, the Venue Jeddah Corniche offers an extraordinary iftar experience at its Subha Ramadan Tent. Juan Uribe, general manager of the hotel, expressed his excitement about the experience, saying: “We are honored to invite our guests to join us for an unparalleled culinary journey during the holy month of Ramadan. Our team has meticulously crafted an iftar buffet that celebrates the diversity of flavors while ensuring a memorable experience for each guest. We look forward to welcoming families, friends, and colleagues to the Subha Ramadan Tent and creating cherished moments together.”

Uribe mentioned that guests can enjoy a variety of appetizing dishes, including Arabian mezze, salads, grilled meats, seafood, vegetarian options, and tempting desserts. The tent provides a serene and elegant ambiance with warm lighting, comfortable seating, and traditional elements, creating a perfect setting for guests to immerse themselves in the spirit of Ramadan.

Another perfect place to spend some quality time with family and friends this Ramadan is the Movenpick Hotel Tahlia Jeddah. The hotel offers a captivating vibe for iftar, with a contemporary hall and a stunning Ramadan tent. The diverse menu featuring Hijazi and international cuisines, along with live cooking stations, adds to the allure of the lighting and atmosphere. Monther Abou Alssil, director of food and beverage, said: “Through culinary excellence and a commitment to sustainability, we strive to create unforgettable dining experiences that not only satisfy the palate but also nourish the planet.”




Movenpick Hotel Tahlia Jeddah's Ramadan tent offers a diverse menu featuring Hijazi and international cuisines, along with live cooking stations. (Supplied)

Alfolk Ramadan tent located at Shangri-La Jeddah offers a modern and stylish ambiance. Their iftar and sahoor buffets showcase a fusion of Middle Eastern, European, Chinese, and Indian flavors. Live oud and violin music further enhances the experience for guests.

Al-Mirkaz Ramadan tent has made a grand return this year with a fresh and captivating look that transports guests to a realm of wonder. The tent radiates sophistication and elegance, adorned with luxurious fabrics, ornate chandeliers, and traditional Arab motifs that create an enchanting atmosphere. They offer a culinary experience that explores Ramadan specialties and international favorites.

Both Alfolk and Al-Mirkaz prioritize sustainability by implementing eco-friendly practices such as reducing food waste and promoting environmental consciousness.

In a city where Ramadan dining experiences are evolving, Bab Al-Balad at the Rosewood hotel’s Soleil restaurant offers an iftar buffet experience that captures the essence of Ramadan and Saudi heritage. This immersive dining journey blends deep-rooted history with modern elegance, featuring a fusion of Arabian and Western flavors in a setting adorned with traditional Ramadan decorations.




Bab Al-Balad at the Rosewood Hotel’s Soleil restaurant. (AN photo)

The Hotel Galleria Jeddah has embraced cost-effective practices and is currently testing food waste monitoring systems. Beyond offering delectable cuisines, the hotel features a kids’ corner, photo booth, electronic play area, and a dedicated section for Saudi coffee, all while prioritizing minimal food waste.

In addition to the sustainable practices adopted by some restaurants in Jeddah, Fogo de Chao is committed to providing guests with the safest, highest-quality, and most wholesome food possible. Restaurant General Manager Shady M. said: “Our approach is rooted in the Brazilian gaucho tradition of nurturing and harvesting food with respect, which we call ‘respeito pela comida’ in Portuguese. To maintain this standard, we carefully select vendor partners who share our values and adhere to the Five Freedoms of Animal Welfare, a globally recognized standard.




Fogo de Chao actively pursues initiatives and programs focused on conserving resources, such as water and energy, and reducing waste.  (Supplied)

“We also prioritize ongoing communication, guidance, and transparency to ensure that all aspects of animal sourcing, health, and well-being meet our commitment to exceptional food quality and safety for our guests.”

Furthermore, Fogo de Chao actively pursues initiatives and programs focused on conserving resources, such as water and energy, and reducing waste to offer a more sustainable dining experience for their guests. Core activities include recycling and promoting recyclable options, as well as minimizing usage and waste. Through these efforts, Fogo de Chao in Jeddah is not only delivering a delightful culinary experience but also contributing to a greener and more sustainable future.


Specialist hospital organizes Advanced Therapies Forum

Updated 52 min 49 sec ago
Follow

Specialist hospital organizes Advanced Therapies Forum

  • Event in Riyadh will bring together 30 representatives from various government organizations and academic institutions alongside advanced therapy manufacturing companies
  • Forum’s agenda seeks to build bridges between academic healthcare institutions, industry stakeholders, funding agencies, investors, regulators, and government agencies

RIYADH: The King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center is set to host the Advanced Therapies Forum which will take place from June 23-24, Saudi Press Agency reported.

The event in Riyadh will bring together 30 representatives from various government organizations and academic institutions alongside advanced therapy manufacturing companies. It will aim to foster a collaborative environment where industrial partners can showcase their research and forge strategic alliances with healthcare institutions.

The forum’s agenda seeks to build bridges between academic healthcare institutions, industry stakeholders, funding agencies, investors, regulators, and government agencies. It also strives to increase the number of clinical research studies in the fields of T-cell therapy and gene therapy.

Industrial partners, including pharmaceutical companies of all sizes, will have the opportunity to explore avenues for launching clinical research initiatives at KFSH&RC.

The forum will feature 15 keynote speeches, over 30 presentations on ongoing projects by industry leaders, five panel discussions, and numerous other sessions. The goal is to cultivate a shared vision for the future of advanced therapies in the Kingdom and to localize manufacturing technology for cellular and gene therapies.

In recent years, KFSH&RC has emerged as a beacon of hope for patients who faced limited treatment options, using genetically modified immune cells to successfully treat more than 120 individuals.

The journey began with a positive outcome for the first child from the region to be treated using T-cells. More recently, the hospital successfully applied advanced gene therapy to eight patients with hereditary hemophilia. The single-dose therapy effectively elevated levels of the missing clotting factor, empowering patients to reclaim their lives.

KFSH&RC has been ranked 20th among the top 250 academic healthcare institutions worldwide, according to SPA, and has held the top spot in the Middle East and Africa region for two consecutive years.

Currently, more than 30 gene and genetically modified cell therapies have been officially approved for clinical use. Experts predict that the global cell and gene therapy market is poised for exponential growth, outpacing the traditional pharmaceutical industry to surpass a staggering $50 billion annually by 2027.

It is estimated that more than 2 million patients will benefit from T-cell therapy within the next decade, with more than a thousand clinical research studies actively underway across the globe.


Award-winning Saudi film ‘Norah’ premieres in theaters across the Kingdom

A special screening of award-winning Saudi film “Norah” was held on Wednesday night at Roshn Front’s Vox Cinema.
Updated 20 June 2024
Follow

Award-winning Saudi film ‘Norah’ premieres in theaters across the Kingdom

  • “Norah” achieved great success at the 78th annual Cannes International Film Festival
  • Film was first screened last December at the Red Sea International Film Festival, where it won the “Best Saudi Film” award

RIYADH: The award-winning Saudi film “Norah” made its premiere in the Kingdom on Thursday after its international success at the Cannes Film Festival.

A special screening was held on Wednesday night at Roshn Front’s Vox Cinema, where director Tawfik Al-Zaidi was in attendance alongside the film’s star, Maria Bahrawi, and her acclaimed co-stars Yaqoub Al-Farhan and Abdullah Al-Sadhan.

Al-Farhan told Arab News: “To be accepted in Cannes is an indication of how important this film is, and also an indication of how much progress the film industry (has made) here.

“Although it’s still the beginning of it, we’re starting to see the results of the huge work that’s happening right now.

“I’m very positive about the future. If this is the beginning, I think after five or 10 years, we’ll be seeing a lot of great films from Saudi.”

“Norah” achieved great success at the 78th annual Cannes International Film Festival, where it was the official selection for the “Un Certain Regard” competition, one of the most critical titles of the event. It also received the Special Mention from the jury, making it the most notably recognized Saudi film at Cannes.

The film takes place in a remote Saudi village in the 90s, where Norah (played by Bahrawi) dreams of seeing horizons beyond her small village. As a new teacher, Nader (played by Al-Farhan) makes his way to her hometown, and Norah’s world begins to open up through art, knowledge and creativity, leading her to discover more about her own family history.

“The fact that they chose me for the role only two weeks before production was a surprise for me. But, thankfully, my first role in a film was a success and reached international audiences. I’m very proud and happy that today it’ll be in cinemas and the world can see it, and I’m excited to see people’s reactions,” Bahrawi told Arab News.

While it was first screened last December at the Red Sea International Film Festival, where it won the “Best Saudi Film” award, the nationwide cinema premiere is a culmination of the film’s journey to its intended audience: the Saudi public.

Bahrawi said: “The fact that they chose me for the role only two weeks before production was a surprise for me. But, thankfully, my first role in a film was a success and reached international audiences. I’m very proud and happy that today it’ll be in cinemas and the world can see it, and I’m excited to see people’s reactions.

“Since I was young, I’ve always dreamed of being an actress, and today I can say that I’ve reached that and acted in my first film as a lead role… AlUla was the city that made my first dream come true.”

Taking public participation even further, a competition was presented to the public last Thursday inviting all girls named Norah to play a part. About 500 girls took part, and two winners received tickets to the special pre-screening event.

“Norah” is the first Saudi feature to be filmed entirely in AlUla. “The city itself and its locations really complemented the film’s story, so that was a wonderful choice for the location,” Bahrawi said.

While the film is both Bahrawi’s debut on the big screen and Al-Zaidi’s first feature film, it was also a personal experience for Al-Farhan, who is widely known for his role in the TV mini series “Rashash.”

“There’s so many similarities between me and the character, which is why it’s a very personal project for me and it’s so dear to my heart, especially after the achievement of the Cannes Film Festival,” he said.

In preparation for the role, Al-Farhan spent time with a professional sketch artist in order to learn the craft for his role — even simple things like holding a pencil the right way.

He said that the beginning sketches featured in the film were his own work, but the final results were “by a real artist.”

Production was supported by the Film Commission through Daw, a national initiative to support and encourage Saudi filmmakers. The film also received support from Film AlUla, the Red Sea Film Fund and Generation 2030.

The inspiration for “Norah” came to Al-Zaidi in 2015 from his need to express something within him. In the same way that Al-Farhan’s character, Nader, portrays his feelings on sketchbooks and canvases, Al-Zaidi uses the big screen.

He told Arab News: “I’m a lover of art in all its forms, whether its music, drawing or visiting museums, cinema encapsulates all of these arts and shows them beautifully through a film’s crew.

“I wanted to create these emotions between two people who love art, Norah and Nader. Art is a means of communication between people, and a means of expression as well.”

As the Saudi film scene continues to develop and grow toward global horizons, Al-Zaidi is confident that the industry can overcome challenges.

“Challenges will always be there, but as they say, ‘success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan’ ... if you believe in yourself, you will get there,” he said.


OIC marks World Refugee Day

Updated 20 June 2024
Follow

OIC marks World Refugee Day

  • Hissein Brahim Taha called for prioritizing the humanitarian needs of vulnerable people forced to flee their homes due to wars, conflicts and natural disasters
  • Brahim Taha said that offering aid and protection to migrants is not only a humanitarian obligation, but also an Islamic duty

JEDDAH: Organization of Islamic Cooperation Secretary-General Hissein Brahim Taha has reiterated the OIC’s support and solidarity with world refugees.

He called for prioritizing the humanitarian needs of vulnerable people forced to flee their homes due to wars, conflicts and natural disasters.

In a statement released on Thursday to mark World Refugee Day, observed annually on June 20, Taha expressed deep gratitude and admiration toward OIC member states for their efforts in providing refuge to displaced people.

He said that offering aid and protection to migrants is not only a humanitarian obligation, but also an Islamic duty.

Taha acknowledged that OIC member states shoulder the largest share of global responsibility in hosting more than half of the world’s refugees. He urged the international community to stand in support of the OIC member states and highlighted the importance of establishing equitable partnerships.

The secretary-general praised the pivotal role played by UNRWA in alleviating the suffering of Palestinian refugees.

He called on the international community to exert concerted efforts to hold the Israeli occupation accountable for its disregard of international laws.


Authorities at Halat Ammar crossing see off departing Hajj pilgrims

Saudi authorities at the Halat Ammar border crossing, in the northwest of the Kingdom, continue to bid farewell to pilgrims.
Updated 20 June 2024
Follow

Authorities at Halat Ammar crossing see off departing Hajj pilgrims

  • Worshippers expressed their gratitude to the Saudi government after being offered copies of the Qur’an, SPA said

RIYADH: Saudi authorities at the Halat Ammar border crossing, in the northwest of the Kingdom, continue to bid farewell to departing pilgrims.

Pilgrims expressed their gratitude to the Saudi government after being offered copies of the Qur’an, Saudi Press Agency reported. 

Hajj 2024 ended on Tuesday and those pilgrims who visited Madinah before the annual pilgrimage have started to leave the Kingdom.  


Ministry supervises Riyadh slaughterhouses for Eid

Slaughterhouses in the Riyadh region received 8,623 slaughters on the fourth day of Eid Al-Adha. (SPA)
Updated 20 June 2024
Follow

Ministry supervises Riyadh slaughterhouses for Eid

  • Ministry said its technical teams carried out 277 regulatory tours of markets and slaughterhouses in Riyadh and 510 visits to shops, stalls and yards

RIYADH: The Saudi Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture said that slaughterhouses in the Riyadh region received 8,623 slaughters on the fourth day of Eid Al-Adha.

This was through both fixed and mobile slaughterhouses supervised by the specialized teams from the ministry’s branch in the region, conducting regulatory operations and providing veterinary inspection services for all livestock.

The ministry said that its technical teams carried out 277 regulatory tours of markets and slaughterhouses in Riyadh and 510 visits to shops, stalls and yards in the region’s markets. These activities resulted in issuing 14 warnings and one violation for non-compliance with health regulations and requirements in slaughterhouses.

In addition, citizens and residents continued to respond positively to the community initiative, “One-third of the sacrifice,” contributing to meat donations for families in need. 

The Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture’s branch in the Riyadh region has made significant efforts during this year’s Eid Al-Adha season.

These included early preparations for organizing the main and temporary sheep markets, as well as the regular and mobile slaughterhouses.