Portrush beams even as the weather gods frown

This was a day that had it all. Streams of sunshine, torrents of rain, high winds and even a rainbow or two, all served up by the weather gods whose moods the people of Northern Ireland know only too well. I’m in Portrush for the 148th running of The Open, golf’s oldest major championship, and

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Local pride and cries of “fore left” on the links in Lahinch

“If the wind gets up, this will be one tough course.” So said defending Dubai Duty Free Irish Open champion Russell Knox as we strolled along one of the mighty fairways at Lahinch, as this year’s running of one of Europe’s great golfing occasions began with a Pro-Am event on Wednesday. “What do you mean,

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Southern hospitality at DFW

A remarkable week at FAB 2019 concluded for me with a memorable tour of Paradies Lagardère’s restaurants and retail stores at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW), where I was reminded again of the warmth of Texan hospitality and the rich blend of culinary culture in this southern state. The quality of food also underlined

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A new benchmark for luxury spirits at DXB

While temperatures have hit more than 40 degrees here in Dubai this week, those of us in town for the celebration of The Macallan’s new airport boutique have enjoyed something akin to a northern European season, at least for a few hours. On Tuesday night, Edrington Global Travel Retail and retail partner Le Clos marked

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Bouncing back at Kansai, and capturing the growth wave

Walking around Kansai International Airport on a beautiful April morning, it’s hard to imagine that less than seven months ago, this was a scene of devastation and destruction. On 4 September Typhoon Jebi hit the western Kansai region hard, and this airport harder than almost anywhere else. Because of the extreme weather, and its location

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From Heisei to Reiwa: a changing era in Japan

We’re on location in Japan at an auspicious time for the country, and not just because of the famed ‘sakura’ or cherry blossom season that brings such beauty to the Spring landscape. Japan’s imperial succession has been planned for some time, with the ascendance of Crown Prince Naruhito to the throne on 1 May, replacing

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Feasting on variety at Tokyo Haneda

Each time I visit Tokyo Haneda Airport, I’m reminded of exactly why it is ranked towards the top of the consumer-voted Skytrax list of the world’s best airports each year. As we reported last week, Haneda was second only to Singapore Changi in the voting for World’s Best Airport, Changi having won for the seventh

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Chasing the Chinese wave

The Moodie Davitt Report’s latest interim bureau opened on Friday (for two days only) in Trieste, the beautiful Italian port city. We’ve come here for Costa Cruises’ latest ship launch, and one that marks a milestone for the Italian cruise specialist and its retail partner, LVMH-owned Starboard Cruise Services. The Costa Venezia is the first

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From Punta Cana to Panama

This week The Moodie Davitt Report has a different interim bureau almost every day, as our roving takes us around the Caribbean, Central America and the USA. We’re making a whirlwind tour of some of Duty Free Americas’ (DFA) most important airport sites in the region, and spending time with owners the Falic family in

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On location in Oman, a country of contrasts

Before travelling to Muscat this week for the inauguration of the new airport terminal and Muscat Duty Free stores, I mentioned to a few people that my next trip was to Oman. Even those who knew a little about this Gulf state struggled to conjure up an image of the country and its place in

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Shop windows on the world at Paris CDG

The most important marketing tool in the armoury of any physical store is the shop window. Be creative and colourful and blend art, design and fashion, and you’ll stop people in their tracks. Be drab, grey and lifeless, and they’ll walk on by. Amid increasing pressure from e-commerce, those messages have never been as important.

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In the army now (or 20 years ago…)

Although this image was taken in 1998, from the distance of two decades I can still feel the ‘thwack’ of missile on helmet as, a few minutes after this picture was snapped, I forgot to duck. This was one of the more memorable social gatherings in my early years in this industry, I recall. I

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Bouncing towards victory with the big man in Ballyliffin

“Did you buy those clubs in a yard sale, man? Wow, they’re old…” That was how the world number five ranked golfer Jon Rahm greeted me (and my elderly set of Taylor Mades) today at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open Pro-Am in Ballyliffin, County Donegal. An insult from one of the world’s greats to

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