Archive for Shopping

Villaggio is now open (20th Sep 2012) – Updated: 21/9/12

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So great (or disappointing depending in your perspective) news for the weekend. Villaggio mall is open (or is opening).

@fzaghmout and @queensara33 tipped us that the mall was open. Now I was skeptical. Last time mall management told us that it was opening, they didn’t. I learned that they were always hopeful rather than realistic.

ILQ’s friends, @dohanews, posted that the mall was open after hearing from Villaggio, however I needed a bit more than the managements word. The expression #burnmeonce comes to mind. Havent been to DohaNews? Check them out, they’re awesome.

So asked on twitter and @hamishfs confirmed that he was in the mall itself but very few stores were open.

On our Facebook pages, we were told that people weren’t allowed in because of fired drills and civil defense testing not finished. So people were told to exit.

Extra thanks to @azmiodeh and @haniarif for getting back to me.

Update: now I’m told that people are allowed in. Who’s going to take the first smiley pic in the mall and send it over? :p

Update2: The fire victims families have issued a public letter, read it here.

Had enough of Aramex Shop and Ship? Here are some alternatives in Qatar.

Put simply, I’ve had enough. Packages get delayed in customs for weeks (with no explanation), when I finally do get them, most of the time the box is damaged (watch out if it comes in a softpack, because you’re screwed), and their location can only be accessed by helicopter (and only if you know how to zipline or base jump).

Shop and Ship could be a fantastic service but they just don’t have the basics right… I’ll work backwards. Have you seen their main pick up location? Although they’ve moved to a new location, I think that parking is actually worse! There are huge rocks, steep ditches, and unless you’re in a Land Cruiser, you’re definately going to damage your car. Even after you pass all the rubble and get onto their parking spots (I think there are around 10 by the way and they’re on the sidewalk!), you then have to suffer with the fact that they have NO queing system. That means that you’ll get either drivers with no manners or the ‘I’m better than you because I wear Chanel glasses that cover my whole face’ masters of the universe.

Can you believe that Aramex even gave me someone else’s package by mistake (like they literally put it in my post box, smsed me to pick it up, and then told me that they were sure it was mine), then told me a week later they called me saying they made a mistake and I had to drop it back. I explained that they could come and pick it up since it was THEIR mistake. I think they did come after another week and picked it up from the apartment lobby. Who knows… perhaps it’s still there gathering dust.

Another annoying thing (and perhaps a smart way from their end on charging you MORE) is the fact that they ship every single item separately. They don’t hold your packages and send it in one nice bundle. So since they have a minimum charge, let’s say you ordered a camera, memory card, case, and a pink thobe from Amazon, they would all be sent separately. You’d get charged for delivery of each one.

Oh did I mention that although Amazon delivered 4 packages, Aramex only records 3? Looks like we’re going to have to hunt for the 4th… -_-

It’s not just me complaining, it seems like they’re consistent in many countries. Here are more:

I mean according to Amplicate.com (a site that looks at how positive or negative people feel towards a brand), a whopping 66% HATE…  Read the rest of this entry »

Lagoona Mall is now open – Here’s some pics

Passed by lagoona mall and it’s now open. A few shops are open so far but I thought you’d like to see what it looks like.

Click here for pics

New Patchi Opens (Le Notre and Rogers Diner soon too)

Here’s a nice example of a positive experience from a company in Qatar. While driving back from a very poor experience at a restaurant (which will soon be reviewed at Dine out Doha), I had passed by a building that was right opposite of Blue Saloon and next to Regency Travel, it stood out because it looked modern, had some colorful lights on it and Rogers Diner grabbed my attention.

I drive up to the car park and parked round back. The good news is that they’ve got underground parking by the way! I know! I was pleasantly surprised myself. Walking into Patchi (a chocolate gift shop), I walked through a marble doorway and the first thing I see in front of me is this huge wall of colorfully wrapped chocolates. First impressions? This feels more like Japan than Qatar. Great to see someone stepping up standards.
A man came up to me and offered me some arabic coffee. To my right was the their silver-ware and glass ornaments, and to my left was special packaging for children and special occasions. Near the center were individual peices of chocolate on glass pedistal.

The general manager came up to me and Read the rest of this entry »

Order an iPad anywhere in the GCC – ShipMyPad.com

I just wanted to let you guys know of a brand new site launched by H.U.G. called ShipMyPad.com

If you’re looking for an iPad to be delivered to Qatar (since Apple doesn’t allow shipping Aramex forwarders anymore), and you don’t want to pay extortionate prices (shops are selling them for 4,500 QR for a 32GB wifi iPad) and would prefer to pay something reasonable like 2,700 QR -3,300QR (depending on the model), then this is the site to get it from.

It’s also delivered via special delivery and insured so it’ll be received in 3-7 working days :)

Enjoy!

A selection of the best iPad cases

If you know Mr. Q, you know he loves Apple products. Wait, why am I talking like that…?

Apple’s designs are amazingly simple and at the end of the day, ILQ shares the same love for simplicity. We’re trying to make things look as simple as possible for our users.

So I now need a great case to protect my iPad and make me look like… a.. man in a…. thobe with an ipad in a…. case…. (I couldn’t think of anything smart to say alright?!)

Searching on Google, I couldn’t really find a nice collection of cases (especially slim ones) so I took it upon myself to provide you all with…..

So click on to read more!

Read the rest of this entry »

Apple cancels orders – No more Aramex :(

Oh Apple why do you do this to me? Where’s the company that inspired us all to ‘Think Different’. If an Apple employee ever reads this, shrugs, and says “Yeah right”; it’ll be a true tragedy.

So I had ordered some iPads from the US store to be sent back home to me here in Doha. Most stores don’t send internationally, so Aramex’s Shop&Ship’s service comes in handy. For those that don’t know Aramex, it’s basically the Arabian FedEx, but more importantly, it’s our link to the West’s fantastic world of shopping.

What Shop&Ship gives you is a US and UK address so that you can order stuff online, send it to your new address and they’ll forward it off to you.

Sadly though! After ordering everything for the Apple store, I just received an email telling me that they don’t ship to P.O.Boxes OR Forwarders. They also told me that I had a day to change the address or the order would be cancelled. What’s more, they’re enforcing a ‘two per person’ policy.

*sighs* why oh why.

Anyway, so I posted on twitter and facebook that I needed a US address and luckily I had 9 people offer to help out. (Thanks everyone!) but the point is, I’m almost tempted to just cancel my order and give up on Apple…

*twiddles thumbs*

Edit: Want an iPad shipped to Qatar or anywhere?! Visit www.shipmypad.com and grab an iPad. (It’s around 1,000 QR cheaper than most shops in Qatar.

Where to buy plants in Qatar?

I’ve been on the hunt for some indoor plants and some pots to match my house for a while now. I finally was lead to a great strip that has a wide selection of plants. Most of them are low maintanence as well!

So here are the places I’ve found:

1) Gardenia – Located on the road which leads up to Applebees, BK, Hardees etc.. and opposite of La Cigale Hotel.
Their plants are quite reasonable in price but their pots are crazily expensive! A large stainless steal was going for 950 QR!

2) The plan shop in Al Asmakh mall. It’s located on the second floor on the right corner of Home Center. They’re quite expensive in my opinion.

3) The Plant strip. Coming from Ramada on Salwa Road, once you hit Decoration roundabout, take a left. You’ll be heading towards Aramex (on the right). Once you hit the round about, turn right. Once you hit the next roundabout, turn right. You’ll find around 6 nurseries with a great deal to choose from. Shop wisely as prices can vary! Delivery of plants is free and remember to always ask for a discount after asking the price of each plant and once they’ve tallied up the total price!
THIS is the place to go for reasonable prices and a variety of choices.

Apple’s new creations in a few days!

I’m so excited whenever Apple wants to announce something. They hardly disappoint (except when they don’t actually announce something except for a software update). At the moment, Apple’s done a great deal of rumour mongering (whomever thinks that the rumours are not planned doesn’t know Apple’s game).

So what are people saying? Some are point to a touch screen device (a giant iPhone), some are saying that there’ll be a new iPhone announced, some are saying it’ll be just a 4.0 update announcement, some are saying they’ll be either adding something to iLife or updating it.

We’ve seen people using words like iSlate, iPad, and iTablet when refrencing this new device. Mainly because Apple registered all three words. My opinion is that it’s probably a decoy. I’m not saying there wont be a device, I’m just saying that there might be another name. iPad sounds too much like iPod, iTablet is a mouthful, and the Apple iSlate could be an inside joke ‘Apple is late’. Apple’s always been late in the game but they’ve always done something fantasmagoric.

Let’s see what happens in a week though when it’s time to announce it!

Fish in Qatar – Species and Names in Arabic

Someone dropped me an email today and I thought that a lot of people might want to benefit from this.

Here are the names of some fish and their arabic names

Grouper – Hamour
White Sea bass – Karoos
Red Snapper – Nahash Ahmar
white Snapper – Nahash Abyadh
Red Tuna – Tuna
Sea Bream – Shiboot

Other tasty fish are:

Chanad
Safi (delicious but small)

What are your favourite fish in Qatar?

Fish in Qatar – Species and Names in Arabic (Original Thread)

Freedom of Expression

    Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which the Qatari Government is a signatory of states: Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any medias and regardless of any frontiers.

    The Emiri Decision Number 86 of the year 2007 on the establishment of the Doha Free Information Centre marked yet another step towards establishing a State of rights and freedom of speech. The decision stipulated that the Centre be a non-profit organization, headquartered in Doha City, and have the authority to establish other affiliated centres inside and outside Qatar. It is worth mentioning that His Highness the Emir issued a decision in 1998 annulling the ministry of information, giving birth to a new era of freedom of speech where censorship was removed from local media.