Category Archives: Fun Things To Do

Zanzibar Bakery & Confectionery, North Al Hail

zanzibar restaurant  Zanzibar Bakery & Confectionery is one of the best places in Oman to try authentic Zanzibari food.  It’s located in North Hail, exactly one roundabout north of the Wave up the coast.      selecting food  You should go inside and point out which food you’d like to have from behind the glass.  You could also just have a seat and ask one of the waiters to see the menu.  It’s always nice to see what it is you’re ordering.  I tried getting pics of all the different types of food you can order there.  This is mainly a post of pics and I recommend going there to try it out for yourself.  Good, cheap food!like a cafeteria juices snacks yum yum rice and more more yummy stuff specials appetizers grills tastes better than it looks sticky substance all kinds of goodies  another great food cooking soups sandwiches dessert hotdrinks dish 1 dish 2 dish 3 main dishes one of the dessert like dishes  great breadgreat soup  The soup was incredibly good!great company  It’s always so much nicer to go to such local restaurants with Omani friends! :-)fresh bread and such  Let’s not forget that this Zanzibari restaurant is also a bakery.  As you see here, you can order some products near the door to take home with you.zanzibar sign  I was really impressed with this gem of a spot that is quite famous to the locals but often overlooked by foreigners.   Would you believe that the total bill was only 8.5 rials?!  And we ate LIKE KINGS!  This is a definite “must try” for you foodies out there.  GSM numbers for restaurant: 99201536, 92408212, 98534311zanzibar logo and info

VOX Cinemas in Oman – Movie Lovers, Rejoice!

VOX cinemas pic  Now that all the bugs have been worked out after the initial opening, VOX Cinemas is a wonderful experience for movie lovers in the Sultanate!  I’m a little late in putting this post out but I wanted to share my experiences watching 6 movies during June of 2014 just after VOX opened in Muscat City Centre (MCC).  BTW, they are now open in Qurum City Centre (QCC) as well!  That makes 17 new theatres in Muscat to enjoy!ticket and waiting area  One thing that is different from other cinemas I’ve been to is that tickets and food items are purchased at the same counters! I’ve seen some frustrated people who simply wanted to buy a ticket real fast waiting behind huge families who were ordering every food item possible.  I definitely recommend buying tickets online (It’s a cinch!) and then proceed to one of these kiosks to push in your confirmation # and “voila”, you’ve got your tickets! You will need to go to the counter anyway if you are watching a 3D movie as you need to pick up a pair unless you have some from a previous 3D movie experience. I think the 3D glasses were 300 baizas each.ticket kiosksvox apps  If you have a smart phone, these mobile apps should come in handy!whole theatre to myself  For my first cinematic experience at VOX, I had this entire theatre to myself! It was at an 11:45am showing of “The Angriest Man in Brooklyn” with Robin Williams and Peter Dinklage who you might better know as Tyrion Lannister of GoT fame. Enjoyable movie that didn’t do well in reviews.  This movie didn’t last long in the cinema here as dramas are not that popular in the Sultanate I’ve noticed. BTW, the best time to watch a movie is late in the morning or early afternoon to avoid the crowds.  (Movies only run in the evenings during Ramadan.)  My favorite lines from The Angriest Man:

  • “Everyone has regrets except for idiots and pychopaths.”
  • “Who ever heard of a doctor without money! This isn’t Toronto!”
  • “The only normal people are those you don’t know very well.”VIP seats  I chose a VIP seat (4 OR) not realizing that the VIP are furthest from the screen!  The VIP are these leather types chairs I don’t really care for rather than the more comfortable blue cloth seats. My advice-Save yourself some money and get a regular seat.popcorn  Plenty of food options of course but the prices are a bit steep for snacks. Example of some prices: small pepsi-1.09, reg. pepsi-1.31, large pepsi-1.53,  kids popcorn (small)-.87, regular popcorn – 1.42, slushpepsi – 1.74.hotdogs!  Love the hotdogs at VOX! They had this special style in which there is only one open hole at the end of the hotdog rather than the slit along the side. Unfortunately, it often resulted in all the ketchup, mustand and mayo forming at the bottom! Steep price at 1.74 OR.color coded timings  I love the signboards which tell you how many minutes left before the next movies are scheduled to play.  Even cooler that they color-code them based on how much time is left.

Here is a list of the VOX theatres now open in both MCC and QCC:        MCC cinemasQCC theatres3D glasses  Seems like just about every movie coming up these days is 3D! (The regular 3D movie prices is 4.7 RO. VIP seats in 3D cost 5.2.)maleficent  The wife and I really enjoyed Maleficent.  The best 3D experience I’ve had thus far. Instead of things whizzing past your head and giving you a headache like many 3D movies, the artistic use of 3D made the fairyworld really come alive. We’ll definitely buy this one when it comes out on DVD.big screen experience  This is the largest cinema known as “VOX Cinema”. They have one of these 16.6 meter mega-screens in MCC and one in QCC.  It seats 261 people while the one in QCC seats 236.  I believe we watched the romantic comedy Blended and the Tom Cruise action flick Edge of Tomorrow (3D) in this theatre.  A warning if you intend to watch a romantic comedy in Oman: Omani young male punks love to attend romantic comedies in pairs and groups and are extremely loud and even shout out inappropriate comments during the film. Extemely annoying! And what’s with people putting their feet up on the seats in front of them? It shows nothing but a complete lack of class and consideration.edge of tomorrow poster  I found Edge of Tomorrow to be kind of boring.  It only got interesting once the “repeat and no risks involved segment” (a large part of the movie) finally ended.  Very groundhog day like but GroundHog Day is actually a much better movie.X-Men 3D  X-Men: Days of Future Past was not that good either but what do you expect…it’s X-Men.  Another one of those movies that I think would have been better in 2D. (Peter Dinklage was in this movie as well!)smallest theatre  This is one of the smallest theatres at MCC. I saw Godzilla 3D at midnight in this tiny theatre. I enjoyed this movie a lot more than I thought I would! On a sidenote, make sure you look very carefully when looking at movie timings and don’t book a movie by accident at midnight when you might have assumed that it was for noon… :-( In my defence, it was confusing as Movie Showtimes list 12am 1st rather than falling at the end of the day’s showings.VOX in ME  Besides our horrible experience dealing with young Omani punks during a romantic comedy, the VOX cinemas are something to experience for yourself. Great screens and awesome sound, apart from the over-the-top deafening “sound demonstration” (which is so unnecessary) before the movie begins.  Check out their website here.

MC MO @ O’Malley’s at the Radisson Tonight!

McMo at OMalleysI went to O’Malley’s at the Radisson last week with a few buddies for the first time. It was a lot of fun and Mc Mo really rocked the house!in action  There is no cover charge and O’Malley’s has a lot of great pub food like Shepherd’s Pie, Irish Stew, fries (chips for you Brits!) and a whole lot more.rocking the house  If you’ve never been to O’Malley’s at the Radisson, it’s really worth a visit. Great spot! And there’s no better timet to go than on a Thursday night as you get R&B night thrown in for free!

R&B Night with McMo Every Thursday at Radisson Blu

McMo at Radisson BluEvery Thursday from 9pm t0 3am. Just got off the phone with one of the organizers. Doors open at 6pm and they start playing sometime between 8:30 and 9pm.  This will be Mc Mo’s 2nd Thursday playing in O’Malley’s Irish Bar at the Radisson. Should be a lot of fun!

Extreme Sailing Series – Muscat, Oman – March 18-21

ImageMy apologies for not posting this before.  Extreme Sailing is taking place right now at Al Mouj Golf Course at the Wave in Muscat, Oman! I was out there this morning and it’s truly a gorgeous day to be outside watching the boats and enjoying all the fun activities taking place like camel riding, football competitions and more…in addition to watching expert sailors from around the globe compete for top prize!  You might want to consider going out there tomorrow with the family.  The Extreme Sailing series started Wednesday but there are still 2 days left.  Here is the schedule for the last 2 days of the sailing series, today and tomorrow:                                                                                    Image             I put this up to focus on “on the water entertainment“.  Please ignore the Extreme Club column as this was originally intended for invited members of the media.  I was invited to be on one of the sailing boats during one of the actual races but I did it last year so I declined the offer to allow others the opportunity to enjoy such a wonderful, once-in-a-lifetime event.  Here’s the post where I included video I took during the actual race last year!ImageIf you haven’t been to Al Mouj Golf Course, there’s no better opportunity than during the exciting extreme sailing series!  It’s on November 18th street on the right hand side of the highway a kilometre or 2 just before the main Wave entrance.  Just keep your eyes out for the excellent signage in place.ImageMy buddy, Geoff, scouting out a good spot for the Red Bull team photoshoot.  My main purpose for being out at Al Mouj this morning was helping Geoff with the equipment and lighting.  The last time I was out there was when they was only a 9-hole course.  They are now a full 18-hole course and it is gorgeous!ImageFrom the media invitation, “With vessels reaching top speeds in narrow stadium courses the Extreme Sailing Series has become a benchmark in the sailing world. Oman features a great sea-faring tradition and has once again been chosen to host the sailing elite including Austrian double Olympic champions Roman Hagara and Hans-Peter Steinacher who are part of the Red Bull Extreme Sailing team.  We are very pleased to welcome all Media for the Extreme Sailing Series, Oman 2014 (19-22 March). We look forward to seeing you as they battle it out in the regatta.”  Here’s a great video including yesterday’s highlights: Image                                 RACING SCHEDULE 2014

Act 1: ASIA (Singapore) February 20-23
Act 2: OMAN (Muscat) March 19-22 
Act 3: CHINA (Qingdao) May 1-4
Act 4: RUSSIA (Saint Petersburg) June 26-29
Act 5: UK (Cardiff) August 22-25
Act 6: TURKEY (Istanbul) September 11-14
Act 7: TBC (Mediterranean) October 2-5
Act 8: AUSTRALIA (Sydney) December 11-14

If I did it right, this should give you live coverage of the race going on right now:ImageI love seeing these smaller sailboats out on the water.ImageImageImage Where the “grass canopy” meets the rocks.  Interesting…ImageCamel riding – Fun for the whole family!ImageImageImageSo what are you waiting for? Head on down to Al Mouj now while the action is on! A big thanks once again to Stacey Ross, Red Bull Communications Specialist, who always does her best to bring fine entertainment to the residents of Oman!