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Why Muslim-friendly Spas are a Hit Amongst Muslim Travellers - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote

Though spas and wellness treatments are a favourite component of travel amongst many leisure travellers, most Muslim travellers are unable to experience spa treatments since a majority of spas and wellness centres around the world do not meet Islamic values and requirements. However, following the boom in Muslim-friendly travel, this is changing and many wellness centres as well as hotels with spa services are adapting their facilities in order to cater to Muslim travellers.

Such spas and wellness centres that do meet Islamic requirements are popularly known as Muslim-Friendly Spas or Islamic Spas and are specifically designed to offer Muslim travellers a transformational spa experience. They have gained immense popularity amongst Muslim travellers during the recent past and offer rich spiritual guidance in addition to its numerous treatments and therapies , while adhering to Islamic requirements at the same time.

More Non-Muslim Countries Eager to Attract Muslim Tourists - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote

With facilities such as Halal food and prayer facilities becoming increasingly available in many destinations around the world, Muslim travellers are venturing further into European and Asian destinations such as France, Italy, South Korea and Japan.

Japan and South Korea are gradually becoming favourite travel destinations amongst Muslim travellers, with Korean and Japanese tourism boards having partnered with Muslim travel agents and consulting agencies such as CrescentRating to ensure that they are capable of meeting the travel needs of Muslims.

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Due to efforts made by Japan to tap into the Muslim tourist market, facilities for Muslim travellers such as Halal food are being made increasingly available across the country. By tapping into the growing Muslim tourist market, Japan hopes to diversify its tourism industry which has been long dependent on Chinese, Taiwanese and South Korean tourists.

Of the 9.7 million visitor arrivals in Japan from January to September 2014, Malaysia and Indonesia were the two Muslim countries that contributed to most of the visits. Visa exemptions for Malaysian tourists have made it easier for them to visit Japan and similar exemptions are due to start for Indonesian tourists in December.

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Peru's first ever hotel to be awarded Muslim-friendly accreditation by CrescentRating - Sonesta Hotel El Olivar - is a five-star luxury hotel in Lima - the vibrant capital of the country. Given a rating of 5 by CrescentRating based on the facilities and services it provides Muslim guests, Sonesta Hotel El Olivar is an excellent Muslim-friendly hotel for travellers in Lima.

Conveniently located in the heart of the San Isidro district – the shopping and business district of Lima – Sonesta Hotel El Olivar is in close proximity to several of the city's main sights and prominent landmarks, making it a fine hotel for both business and leisure travellers. Travellers in the area will have plenty of things to do - exploring Lima's world-class museums, artisan markets and attractions.

Daily FT reported on the partnership formed between CrescentRating and MasterCard to develop MasterCard-CrescentRating Global Muslim Travel Index (GMTI). It stated that CrescentRating's annual rankings of Muslim-friendly holiday destinations will be developed into a global index to benefit both Muslim travellers as well as  the travel industry and investors.

The agreement was signed at the 10th World Islamic Economic Forum held in Dubai and the Index will be released in January 2015, with updates being made quarterly.

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Mr. Fazal Bahardeen - the CEO of CrescentRating - will be offering advice to startup companies on how they can reach out to Muslim consumers at Startup Asia Jakarta 2014.

Held on the 26th and 27th of November, Startup Asia Jakarta 2014 is a large-scale conference that will showcase newly-launched and product-ready tech startups, along with a huge line-up of fireside chats, keynotes, and discussions.

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A total of 12 memorandum of understanding (MoU) and agreements have been signed between Malaysia and United Arab Emirates partners, following the end of the 10th World Islamic Economic Forum held in Dubai.

Conducted by Malaysian counterpart WIEF Foundation under the helm of former deputy prime minister Tun Musa Hitam, the three-day forum ended on the 30th of August at Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai and saw the participation of numerous Muslim and non-Muslim nations.

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At the 10th World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF) held in Dubai, Indonesia was identified as having much work to do in improving its infrastructure and regulations to support an Islamic-compliant economy.

Industry professionals stated that in addition to Indonesia's large economic size, expansion takes longer due to the country's small scale economy and the large number of un-bankable people.

The event saw many non-Muslim countries that were eager to develop their Islamic economic industry, including Japan, Luxembourg, South Korea and the United Kingdom.

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The recognition by CrescentRating will further enhance Hotel Granvia Kyoto’s ability to attract the growing number of Muslim visitors to Japan      


Kyoto – 05th November 2014 – Hotel Granvia Kyoto became the first hotel in Japan to obtain a Muslim-Friendly rating by CrescentRating. The 4 star hotel conveniently located within the JR Kyoto Station Building Complex was recently awarded a rating of 4 by CrescentRating, based on the services and facilities it offers its Muslim guests.

Known for its commitment for being Muslim-friendly, hotel's rooms are tastefully decorated and marked with prayer directions. Prayer mats and prayer timetables are made available on request. The hotel is also able to arrange separate prayer rooms for group reservations or events.

The hotel's traditional Japanese restaurant - Ukihashi - offers a range of Halal menus; No alcohol, pork or non-Halal seasoning products are used in the dishes and all meat products are Halal-certified. Further, all tableware and utensils at the restaurant are stored separate from the items used with non-Halal food in order to avoid contamination.

The "Halal Bento Box" and "Halal Japanese Kaiseki" are favourites amongst guests and offer a way for Muslim guests to sample authentic Japanese cuisine. In addition to the Ukihashi restaurant, Le Temps restaurant at the hotel also offers a separate Halal menu between 11:00am and 11:00p.m. This popular café restaurant also offers breakfast with clearly marked Halal items.

"We are increasingly aware of the need to cater to the requirement of the Muslim guest. This recognition from CrescentRating further strengthens our resolve to continue to explore other areas to make our Muslim guests feel at home in our Hotel. We are looking forward to welcoming Muslim travellers from all over the world to our beautiful city of Kyoto” said Shiho Ikeuchi, Overseas Marketing Director of Hotel Granvia Kyoto.

According to CrescentRating, Muslim travelers to Japan are projected to more than triple by 2020. In 2013, it estimates 300,000 Muslims tourists visited Japan. This figure could exceed 1,000,000 by 2020. More and more cities across Japan are developing services and facilities to attract this segment. As a consequence of that, Japan made the biggest improvement in CrescentRating’s 2014 Annual ranking of Muslim Friendly Holiday destination.

"With the growth of the Muslim visitor arrivals to Japan, Hotel Granvia Kyoto is ideally positioned to cater to them. With more such services and facilities becoming Muslim-friendly, we strongly believe Japan has the possibility to reach 1 million visitors even before 2020” said Fazal Bahardeen, CEO of CrescentRating.

For more information, a full list of facilities and services offered by Hotel Granvia Kyoto is available on

About Hotel Granvia Kyoto:

Hotel Granvia Kyoto is a world-class deluxe hotel that prides itself on serving the needs of discerning visitors to the city of Kyoto, the historical and cultural heart of Japan. First opened in 1997, the Hotel Granvia Kyoto is an integral part of the Kyoto Station Complex, a strikingly beautiful architectural masterpiece. Contemporary in style, yet imbued with the traditions of service and comfort that are associated with Kyoto, the Hotel Granvia Kyoto is renowned for its impressive collection of over 1000 unique pieces of art by Kyoto artists. Hence, the hotel’s museum-like elegant ambiance. The hotel features 535 tastefully decorated rooms, 12 restaurants, 13 banquet rooms, fitness facilities, and shops. High-speed internet access is complimentary in all guest rooms. Centrally located at the Kyoto Station Complex, guests have numerous transportation options available to them within minutes of leaving their rooms, making it the city’s most convenient hotel. Guests will easily find direct transportation links to anywhere in Kyoto, as well as quick access to Japan’s vast top-flight rail network including the high-speed Shinkansen bullet train and convenient transport to Kansai International Airport.

About CrescentRating:

CrescentRating, a Singapore based company, is the pioneer and world’s leading authority on Halal/Muslim friendly travel. It’s vision is to enable Muslim travellers to explore the world with peace of mind by leading the growth of the Muslim Travel segment to benefit travellers, destinations and travel service providers. Since 2009 CrescentRating has been enabling destinations and travel services across the globe to effectively connect with the niche and lucrative Halal conscious Muslim travelers. CrescentRating provides rating & accreditation, research & consultancy, workshops & training and destinations marketing services. It’s in-flight prayer time calculator is the world’s first and only prayer calculator app which can calculate prayer times for flights. Crescentrating also partners with MasterCard to bring the “MasterCard-CrescentRating Global Muslim Travel Index (GMTI)”. is a sister brand of CrescentRating providing travel inspiration and online travel booking platform for Muslim travelers.

Recent Announcements: 29th October 2014: MasterCard and CrescentRating Announce a Global Muslim Travel Index

For further information or discussion, please contact:


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The Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry has stated that the family tourism market segment makes up 12.5% of the entire global tourism market. Industry professionals have noted that the size of the family tourism market segment is larger than the world’s largest conventional tourism market -  the US market - which makes up only 11.4% of the global market.
The report by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry was released for the 10th World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF) - organised by Dubai Chamber and the WIEF Foundation in Dubai - which was held from 28-30 October 2014.

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UAE Info




The United Arab Emirates, sometimes simply called the Emirates or UAE, is a country situated in Southwest Asia, bordering the Gulf of Oman and the Persian Gulf, between Oman and Saudi Arabia. The largest emirate, Abu Dhabi, accounts for 87% of the UAE’s total area (67,340 square kilometres) while Ajman, the smallest emirate, covers an area of only 259 square kilometres.


A population of close to 5.4 million. Muslims account for about 76% of the entire population.


Tropical and warm. On the coastal plain average maximum temperatures reach above 48 °C (118.4 °F) during July and August. Average minimum temperatures in January and February are between 10 and 14 °C (50 and 57.2 °F).


Arabic and English are two commonly spoken languages in the UAE.


GMT+4 hrs throughout the year


Government: 8 AM to 3 PM
General: 9 AM to 5 PM
(Sunday to Thursday are the working days of the week. Friday & Saturday are considered as weekends)

Independence Day: December 2nd
New Year's Day: January 1st

Muslim Festivals (Based on the lunar calendar):
Islamc New Year


UAE Dirham


Police/ Emergencies: 999
Tourist Security: 800-4888
Medical: 998
Fire: 997

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