Canadian Ismaili Muslims Welcome India’s Popular Music Duo Salim-Sulaiman to Toronto!!

The Canadian Ismaili Muslim community welcomed popular Indian composers Salim-Sulaiman to Calgary last week, the first stop of a Canadian concert tour to celebrate His Highness the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee. The final concert takes place this Saturday in Brampton.

Two of India’s most respected composers, Salim and Sulaiman Merchant, will be performing live in Brampton on Saturday, March 17. The pieces to be performed at this final concert will include a combination of Bollywood music and devotional songs in a unique mix that connects mind and matter, body and soul. Using music – a universal language that transcends faith, ethnicity and nationality – the performance is designed to uplift, inspire, and unite.
The performance is part of a global series of Jubilee Concerts organized in celebration of His Highness the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee or 60th year of leadership of the Ismaili Muslim Community. Past concerts venues have included Moscow, Mumbai, Dar-es-Salaam, Houston and Atlanta, with upcoming concerts in Hyderabad, Dhaka and Sydney.

Over the past six decades, the Aga Khan has transformed the quality of life for millions of people around the world. In the areas of health, education, cultural revitalisation, and economic empowerment, he has worked to inspire excellence and improve living conditions and opportunities in some of the world’s most remote and troubled regions.
The sibling duo, the pride of the global Ismaili community, has directed songs for over one hundred films as well as many TV shows and records incorporating cinematic, folk, electronica and sufi influences to their music. Continue reading “Canadian Ismaili Muslims Welcome India’s Popular Music Duo Salim-Sulaiman to Toronto!!”

2018 Brampton Visitor Guide now available

BRAMPTON, ON – Offering something for everyone, the 2018 Brampton Visitor Guide is now available online and in print. The guide helps residents and visitors plan all of the exciting and fun things to see and do across Brampton. It invites readers to discover unexpected finds and unique places shaped by exceptional character in the city.

The guide showcases Brampton through:
• Authentic culinary experiences
• Celebrated members of the community
• Festivals and events that bring people together
• Featured activities and attractions
• Hidden natural spaces and trails
• A vibrant arts and culture community
The 2018 Brampton Visitor Guide is produced in cooperation with Tourism Toronto, Ontario’s Regional Tourism Organization #5, and the City of Brampton. Copies of the guide are distributed throughout Ontario to tourism information centres, chambers of commerce, hotels, industry tour operators and more.

Residents and visitors are encouraged to pick up a print copy at Brampton City Hall or download an electronic version available on Tourism Brampton’s website.

“Whether you’re hosting visitors from out of town or just wanting to know your city better, use the Visitor Guide to make your plans. This guide will help you explore our city’s tourist attractions, attend premier festivals, events and sport tournaments, as well as enjoy our many parks and trails. Continue reading “2018 Brampton Visitor Guide now available”

Celebrating Women in the Month of March with Female-Friendly Solo Travel Destinations

 The entire month of March is dedicated to celebrating women and their accomplishments and last year, various travel authorities cited 2017 as “the year of the female traveler.” Since then, 2018 has become known as the “year of the woman.” What better way to recognize such important strides – both individual and communal – than to take a solo trip? Considering cultural immersion, learning opportunities and overall inspiration, these eight destinations are welcoming solo female travelers.

“There is a direct correlation between higher job satisfaction levels and work-life balance, especially for female professionals,” said Kieran Donahue, vice president, brand, marketing and digital for the Americas at Marriott International. “Travel plays an imperative role in that balance creating opportunities to not only reset, but also learn from the culture of a new destination. As a solo-female traveler myself, here are some of my favorite picks for 2018.”

Columbus, OH – The city is preparing to host the Women’s Final Four® from March 30 – April 1.  In the year of the women, these 2018 games will be ones to remember.  Columbus is fostering creative talent like never before with female chefs, artists and fashion designers.  Located downtown, The Westin Columbus is in center of it all. Solo travelers will enjoy visiting the Short North Arts District with its boutiques, restaurants and galleries, or going for a run at the Scioto Mile with 33 acres of riverfront parkland. Continue reading “Celebrating Women in the Month of March with Female-Friendly Solo Travel Destinations”


 In keeping with the global tradition of recognising the significant and growing contribution of women, Jet Airways, India’s full-service, premier international airline, celebrates the International Women’s Day (IWD) by operating flights with an all-women Cockpit and Cabin Crew members, along with a host of other measures, as part of its JetVivainitiative.

 Observed annually on March 8, International Women’s Day represents an opportunity to acknowledge and appreciate women and their contributions as well as achievements in all spheres of life. Demonstrating confidence and pride in its women employees who comprise more than one-third of its workforce, this time the airline spreads the International Women’s Day celebrations not only pan-India, but also on its long-haul, transatlantic flights.

 Additionally, Jet Airways is also undertaking a special in-flight fundraising drive to support the work of two leading NGOs working on women’s issues. The airline will contribute the benefits of these in-flight collection proceeds to Mijwan Welfare Society that aims to empower the underprivileged with a focus on the girl child through education, technical skills and employment generation, and Save the Children India’s – Women’s Institute for Social Education, which provides vocational training programmes for adolescent girls from marginalised sections of society across Mumbai. The fund raising drive runs from until March 16, 2018 on all its domestic flights. Continue reading “JET AIRWAYS CELEBRATES WOMEN’S CONTRIBUTION ON ‘INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY’”

NFAI to host Women’s Film Festival, pay tribute to Sridevi

To mark the International Women’s Day, a Women’s Film Festival is being organized from during March 9 – 11, 2018 at National Film Archives of India (NFAI), Pune The festival is being organized jointly by NFAI, Aashay Film Club and the AAYAM Group of Women in Media.

This will be the 9th edition of the festival. The theme of this year’s edition is Travelling Women. The festival will be inaugurated on Friday, 9th March at 4:30 PM. At the ceremony, the AAYAM group will felicitate travel blogger Ritu Harish Goyal for her evocative writings on the subject of travel. The festival will open with Sidney Pollack’s Out Of Africa, featuring Meryl Streep.

On 10th March, 6 pm onwards, the festival will screen Balu Mahendra’s Tamil film Moondram Pirai, in remembrance of actress Sridevi. The film features Kamal Haasan and Sridevi in what is regarded as one of her best performances, as a woman suffering from retrograde amnesia. It was later remade into Hindi as Sadma.

The festival will feature other acclaimed films including Away We GoUnder the Tuscan Sun, and Wild. The closing film is Eat Pray Love, starring Julia Roberts. Before the closing film, Zelam Chaubal of Kesari Tours and Shubhada Joshi of Girikand Travels will share their travelling experiences. Continue reading “NFAI to host Women’s Film Festival, pay tribute to Sridevi”

Jindal Mansion plays host to Eli’s of Elephant Parade

  JSW Group has unveiled an impressive installation of elephant sculpture at Jindal Mansion on Pedder Road in Mumbai. The installation is part of the 101 gorgeous elephant sculptures by leading artists and designers including LN Tallur, Princess Pea, Christian Louboutin, Sabyasachi Mukherjeeand Masaba Gupta that have been set up for public display as part of the Elephant Parade India. Jindal Mansion is a heritage building embedded in the warp and weft of Mumbai. Over the last few years, it has also become a live canvas to various art initiatives to encourage passers-by to stop, admire and think about Art and Beauty. The idea is to make public art accessible so that there is more dialogue around it. The installation is also a precursor to JSW’s annual Earth Care Awards, currently in its seventh edition. TheJSW Earth Care Awards have created a platform for recognising climate change mitigation champions, and showcase their path breaking work.

Commenting on the Elephant Sculpture installed at Jindal Mansion, Mrs Sangita Jindal, Chairperson –  JSW Foundation said,“As a patron of art, I strongly believe that art and culture contribute towards the growth of society and creates positive ripples of conversation for our future generations. It is important that Art is inclusive and should be experienced by a wide array of audiences. I am pleased to bring The Elephant Parade to Jindal Mansion and contribute towards creating awareness around #HelpTheHaathi.” Continue reading “Jindal Mansion plays host to Eli’s of Elephant Parade”

The Unbound Collection by Hyatt Brand to Expand in Europe

New hotels in London and Istanbul expected to join The Unbound Collection by Hyatt brand
Iconic Hôtel Martinez in Cannes partially reopened as part of the brand portfolio

Hyatt Hotels Corporation (NYSE: H) announced today two hotels in Europe are expected to join The Unbound Collection by Hyatt brand – the Great Scotland Yard Hotel in London and Nish Palas in Istanbul. Additionally, the iconic Hôtel Martinez in Cannes, the charming Párisi Udvar Hotel in Budapest and the newly renovated Hôtel du Louvre in Paris are all expected to open and become a part of The Unbound Collection by Hyatt portfolio by early 2019, creating significant growth for the brand in Europe.

“The Unbound Collection by Hyatt brand offers tremendous potential for growth in the European market. The brand allows new hotel owners to explore opportunities with us,” said Peter Norman, senior vice president, acquisitions and development – Europe, Africa and Middle East (EAME) and Southwest Asia for Hyatt. “This brand enables us to team up with new owners and developers and furthers the foundation they’ve developed with their individual hotel brands. We also know guests are increasingly seeking authentic and one-of-a-kind experiences and have a desire to stay at properties that have a story to tell while creating new stories of their own and The Unbound Collection by Hyatt brand caters to this demand.” Continue reading “The Unbound Collection by Hyatt Brand to Expand in Europe”


The public has spoken! With over 5,500 people voting in the Toronto Zoo’s “Help Us Name Our Baby Rhinos” promotion, names for the greater one-horned rhino and white rhino have emerged as favourites. “Kiran”, meaning “ray of light” in Hindi,has been confirmed as the name for the Toronto Zoo’s male greater one-horned rhino calf! “Theodore”, starting with a “T” for dad Tom, has been confirmed as the name for the Toronto Zoo’s male white rhino calf! The Zoo’s Wildlife Care Keepers chose potential names for both the calves and the Toronto Zoo asked the public to vote online to help decide on the BEST name for each calf.

“By encouraging the public to assist us in naming our baby rhinos, it allows us to engage the community in a fun way,” says Maria Franke, Curator of Mammals, Toronto Zoo. “At the same time, it also allows us to bring forward the plight that all rhino species face in the wild. We hope that we have educated and empowered people to help the Toronto Zoo generate funds for conservation efforts to save these majestic animals.”

Theodore was born on December 24, 2017, to mother Zohari and father Tom. Kiran was born on January 4, 2018, to mother Ashakiran (affectionately known to her keepers as “Asha”) and father Vishnu.

Theodore’s birth is very important for white rhinoceros conservation as the species is currently listed as Near Threatened on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species.  Continue reading “TORONTO ZOO’S TWO TINY RHINOS HAVE NAMES!”

Malabari at Malibu: Ocean, Sun and Fun!

A  Malabari, like myself, hails from the West Coast! (India’s southwest coast, lying on the narrow coastal plain of Karnataka and Kerala states between the Western Ghats range and the Arabian Sea). Known as God’s own country, Kerala boasts of gorgeous beaches and landscape that makes you fall in love at first sight. No words can do justice to the kind of natural beauty Kerala is home to.  Anyone planning a beach holiday or an escape to the mountains, should definitely consider visiting this quaint place.

However, now I want to talk about a different paradise, another west coast! Malibu by the Pacific Ocean, an escape to the fantasy world! We had a family gathering, a religious event which brought us to beautiful California yet again.  Given the time constraints, we skipped the glitz of Hollywood and the posh landmarks of Beverly Hills. We squeezed time for   L.A.’s most stunning natural wonders.

It’s true that if you don’t have much time to explore, all you need to do is cruise up to Malibu on the Pacific Coast Highway for an amazing experience! We have driven the entirety of Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) through California multiple times and enjoyed it immensely every single time.

From the back sides of billionaire mansions on Carbon Beach   to Zuma Beach on the northern end of Malibu, the 21 mile shoreline that makes up Malibu is on the most exclusive places in the world.  The cliffs and Santa Monica Mountains terraced with massive mansions isolate Malibu from the sprawling madness of Los Angeles. Continue reading “Malabari at Malibu: Ocean, Sun and Fun!”

City and Ryerson University partner to create ShapeLab

The City of Toronto and Ryerson University have partnered to create ShapeLab: Toronto’s Innovation and Co-Creation Pilot. ShapeLab is a hands-on learning opportunity in which students, municipal staff, faculty members and other professionals co-create innovative solutions to Toronto’s pressing urban issues.

As a new pilot program, ShapeLab’s inaugural city-building initiative will be the King Street Transit Pilot area. The ShapeLab initiative encourages Ryerson students to shape public space along King Street through citizen engagement and by creating opportunities for a more interactive and vibrant streetscape. The resulting public space installations are meant to complement those that will be installed as a result of the already announced “Everyone is King” campaign.

“A partnership like this that provides academic and professional development for students while improving public space is a win-win for the city and for the neighbourhoods along King Street,” said Mayor John Tory. “The students will be challenged to create streetscape enhancements that encourage people to engage with and make good use of the public space along King, while at the same time understanding the real-life challenges of designing for Toronto’s streets.”

The initiative invites all Ryerson students and graduates to submit their ideas for public activations at a Design Challenge that takes place in March, in which four interdisciplinary student teams will be selected to participate in the 2018 ShapeLab and move their ideas into action. Continue reading “City and Ryerson University partner to create ShapeLab”