Events

Sun 30
  • Cocoon at Cairo Jazz Club
    Cocoon at Cairo Jazz Club
    Aug 30 10:30 pm to Aug 31 3:00 am - Cairo Jazz Club
    Local band, Cocoon, return to the Cairo Jazz Club stage for a night of Latin and Afro-Cuban jazz. For reservations, call 01068804764.
  • Nagham Band at El Sawy Culturewheel
    Nagham Band at El Sawy Culturewheel
    Aug 30 7:00 pm to Aug 30 9:00 pm - El Sawy Culturewheel
    Nagham Band to take to the stage at El Sawy Culturewheel's River Hall for a night of quintessential Arabic music. Tickets are 15LE for members...
  • Naghm Band at El Sawy Culturewheel
    Naghm Band at El Sawy Culturewheel
    Aug 30 7:00 pm to Aug 30 9:00 pm - El Sawy Culturewheel
    Naghm Music Band hosts a night of Arabic music at El Sawy Culturewheel's River Hall. Tickets are for 20LE and can be purchased from the ticket...
  • Yehya Khalil at Cairo Opera House
    Yehya Khalil at Cairo Opera House
    Aug 30 8:00 pm to Aug 30 11:00 pm - Cairo Opera House
    Egyptian Jazz pioneer, Yehya Khalil, is joined by some of the country's most talented musicians for a special jazz concert in the small hall....
  • Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Aug 30 10:00 pm to Sep 06 2:00 am - Bab El Nil
    Catch belly dancing queen, Soraya, every night this week at Fairmont Nile City's Bab El Nil. For more information and reservations, call 02...
Mon 31
  • A-Squared & MFayek at Cairo Jazz Club
    A-Squared & MFayek at Cairo Jazz Club
    Aug 31 10:00 pm to Sep 01 3:00 am - Cairo Jazz Club
    Get ready for another Manic Monday at CJC, as A-Squared and MFayek take to the decks. Reservations at Cairo Jazz Club are recommended; call...
  • Open Mic & Jam Night at the Tap
    Open Mic & Jam Night at the Tap
    Aug 31 10:00 pm to Sep 01 2:00 am - The Tap
    Musicians from across Cairo assemble once more for the Tap's Open Mic & Jam Night. For more information and reservations, call 0101 600...
  • Karaoke Night at Overtime Bar & Restaurant
    Karaoke Night at Overtime Bar & Restaurant
    Aug 31 10:30 pm to Sep 01 2:00 am - Overtime Bar & Restaurant
    Mohandiseen's Overtime Bar & Restaurant welcomes on and all for night of karaoke. For reservations, call 0122-0277-686 or 0114-8107-467.
  • Oriental Night at Cavallini
    Oriental Night at Cavallini
    Aug 31 9:00 pm to Sep 01 3:00 am - Cavallini
    Enjoy a night of quintessential Oriental pleasures at Heliopolis nightclub, Cavallini. For reservations, call 01061191100.
  • Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Aug 30 10:00 pm to Sep 06 2:00 am - Bab El Nil
    Catch belly dancing queen, Soraya, every night this week at Fairmont Nile City's Bab El Nil. For more information and reservations, call 02...
Tue 01
  • Nada El Shazly + Abdullah Miniawy & Ahmed Saleh at Cairo Jazz Club
    Nada El Shazly + Abdullah Miniawy & Ahmed Saleh at Cairo Jazz Club
    Sep 01 10:00 pm to Sep 02 3:00 am - Cairo Jazz Club
    Singer, producer and general woman-of-many-talents, Nada El Shazly, returns to CJC with her experimental sounds, before Ahmed Saleh's...
  • R&B Night with DJ Feedo at O Bar
    R&B Night with DJ Feedo at O Bar
    Sep 01 9:00 pm to Sep 02 3:00 am - O Bar
    Head over to Fairmont Nile City's O Bar and catch Cairo's one and only r&b and hip hop master, DJ Feedo. For reservations, call...
  • Belly Dance Night at Ahlein
    Belly Dance Night at Ahlein
    Sep 01 9:00 pm to Sep 02 3:00 am - Ahlein
    JW Marriott Hotel Cairo's Ahlein welcomes one and all for quintessential Oriental night. For reservations, call 0224115588.
  • Karaoke Night at Cavallini
    Karaoke Night at Cavallini
    Sep 01 9:00 pm to Sep 02 3:00 am - Cavallini
    Heliopolis nightclub, Cavallini, welcomes one and all for a night of karaoke. For reservations, call 010 611 911 00.
  • Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Aug 30 10:00 pm to Sep 06 2:00 am - Bab El Nil
    Catch belly dancing queen, Soraya, every night this week at Fairmont Nile City's Bab El Nil. For more information and reservations, call 02...
Wed 02
  • Safi at Cairo Jazz Club
    Safi at Cairo Jazz Club
    Sep 02 10:00 pm to Sep 03 3:00 am - Cairo Jazz Club
    Safi makes his long-awaited return to Cairo Jazz Club, with an arsenal of French house and Nu-Disco in tow. For reservations, call 010-6880-4764.
  • Amie at La Palmeraie
    Amie at La Palmeraie
    Sep 02 10:00 pm to Sep 05 3:00 am - La Palmeraie
    Belly-dancing star, Amie, performs for three consecutive nights at Sofitel Cairo El Gezirah's La Palmeraie. For reservations,...
  • Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Aug 30 10:00 pm to Sep 06 2:00 am - Bab El Nil
    Catch belly dancing queen, Soraya, every night this week at Fairmont Nile City's Bab El Nil. For more information and reservations, call 02...
  • Ladies Night at Cavallini
    Ladies Night at Cavallini
    Sep 02 9:00 pm to Sep 03 3:00 am - Cavallini
    Every Wednesday, Heliopolis Nightclub, Cavallini, invites Cairo's femme fatales for a night dedicated to them. For reservations,...
  • Mosh Hategy Fee Bamboo at Bamboo
    Mosh Hategy Fee Bamboo at Bamboo
    Sep 02 10:00 pm to Sep 03 5:00 am - Bamboo
    Rhetorical questions aside, Bamboo hosts a dusk to dawn party featuring resident DJs 3abkarino, Kiko and Bob. For reservations, call 0237496162.
Thu 03
  • Seafood Festival at Napa Grill
    Seafood Festival at Napa Grill
    Sep 03 7:00 pm to Sep 03 11:00 pm - Napa Grill
    Fairmont Nile City invite Cairo's seafood fans for an open buffet and live music in popular restaurant, Napa Grill. Entry is 250LE++ per...
  • Riham Mostafa at Onyx Lounge
    Riham Mostafa at Onyx Lounge
    Sep 03 10:30 pm to Sep 04 2:00 am - Onyx Lounge
    Catch glamourous and soulful singer, Riham Mostafa, at Fairmount Nile City's Onyx Lounge. For reservations, call 01220277686 or 01148107467.
  • Hassan Ramzy & the Cadillacs at Cairo Jazz Club
    Hassan Ramzy & the Cadillacs at Cairo Jazz Club
    Sep 03 9:30 pm to Sep 04 3:00 am - Cairo Jazz Club
    Hassan Ramzy hits the CJC stage with a repertoire of acoustic originals, before local  take over. Reservations at Cairo Jazz Club are...
  • Amie at La Palmeraie
    Amie at La Palmeraie
    Sep 02 10:00 pm to Sep 05 3:00 am - La Palmeraie
    Belly-dancing star, Amie, performs for three consecutive nights at Sofitel Cairo El Gezirah's La Palmeraie. For reservations,...
  • Belly Dance Night at Ahlein
    Belly Dance Night at Ahlein
    Sep 03 9:00 pm to Sep 04 3:00 am - Ahlein
    JW Marriott Hotel Cairo's Ahlein welcomes one and all for quintessential Oriental night. For reservations, call 0224115588.
Fri 04
  • Fairouz T & Special K at Cairo Jazz Club [Duplicated]
    Fairouz T & Special K at Cairo Jazz Club [Duplicated]
    Sep 04 10:00 pm to Sep 05 3:00 am - Cairo Jazz Club
    Fairouz T kicks off Friday night at Cairo Jazz Club with melodic vocal deep house, before Special K headlines with his trademark tech house sets....
  • London Sound Music Festival at Chinese Garden
    London Sound Music Festival at Chinese Garden
    Sep 04 5:00 pm to Sep 05 12:00 am - Chinese Gardens, Cairo International Conference Centre, Nasr Rd, Nasr City
    Bringing some of the Middle East's most popular bands, the third edition of the London Sound Music Festival welcomes Mashrou3 Leila, Massar...
  • Amie at La Palmeraie
    Amie at La Palmeraie
    Sep 02 10:00 pm to Sep 05 3:00 am - La Palmeraie
    Belly-dancing star, Amie, performs for three consecutive nights at Sofitel Cairo El Gezirah's La Palmeraie. For reservations,...
  • Lana at Saigon Restaurant & Lounge
    Lana at Saigon Restaurant & Lounge
    Sep 03 10:00 pm to Sep 05 2:00 am - Saigon Restaurant & Lounge
    Fairmont Nile City's Saigon Restaurant & Lounge welcomes sultry songstress, Lana, for two back-to-back nights of live music. For...
  • Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Aug 30 10:00 pm to Sep 06 2:00 am - Bab El Nil
    Catch belly dancing queen, Soraya, every night this week at Fairmont Nile City's Bab El Nil. For more information and reservations, call 02...
Sat 05
  • El Morabba3 at Cairo Jazz Club
    El Morabba3 at Cairo Jazz Club
    Sep 05 10:00 pm to Sep 06 3:00 am - Cairo Jazz Club
    Cairo Jazz Club ends the weekend with a very special night, as Jordanian rock band, El Morabba3 take to the stage. Reservations at CJC are...
  • Let's N Dance at Tolip El Galaa Hotel
    Let's N Dance at Tolip El Galaa Hotel
    Sep 05 10:00 am to Sep 05 7:00 pm - Tolip El Galaa Hotel, Orouba St., Heliopolis, Cairo
    Fitness event, Let's N Dance, is set to welcome some of the country's best fitness instructors lead Cairo's ladies for a day of...
  • Belly Dance Night at Ahlein
    Belly Dance Night at Ahlein
    Sep 05 9:00 pm to Sep 06 3:00 am - Ahlein
    JW Marriott Hotel Cairo's Ahlein welcomes one and all for quintessential Oriental night. For reservations, call 02-24115588.
  • Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Aug 30 10:00 pm to Sep 06 2:00 am - Bab El Nil
    Catch belly dancing queen, Soraya, every night this week at Fairmont Nile City's Bab El Nil. For more information and reservations, call 02...
  • Oldies Night at Cavallini
    Oldies Night at Cavallini
    Sep 05 9:00 pm to Sep 06 3:00 am - Cavallini
    Heliopolis nightclub, Cavallini, takes a stroll down musical memory lane with Oldies Night. For reservations, call 0106 119 1100.

Highlights

Restaurants

Kazouza: Delicious Street Eats in Small Portions at Maadi Favourite

Kazouza: Delicious Street Eats in Small Portions at Maadi Favourite

No matter how much we love pizza, sushi or nachos, our very own traditional Egyptian cuisine will forever remain our go-to comfort food; because let's face it, it's in our genes. Craving some homemade Egyptian food, we paid a visit to Maadi's Kazouza on Street 9, which hits enough right notes in terms of atmosphere and delicious Egyptian street bites offered.  After miraculously finding a parking spot around the corner and doing a discrete little happy dance - spotted by the people in the car next to us - we were greeted by thefriendly staff into an all-outdoors area, where we took our seats next to several fans leaving us slightly pacified in the insufferable heat.  With a traditional Ahwa Baladi setting, Kazouza offers Egyptianised décor with retro touches, including circular Ahwa tables, old-looking salt and pepper shakers, aged frames as well as vintage tin boxes - the kind of stuff you'd find at grandma's house.       Checking the menu, we were a little disappointed to find that many items were either unavailable or are still to be added in Kazouza's new menu. . After some debate, we opted for some fries (8LE) and Cheese Sambousak(14LE) as appetisers, which arrived, hot and delicious, in no time. The fries were gold and crisp, while the four sambousak pieces satisfied our afternoon cheese-cravings; perfectly crunchy on the outside, with soft molten cheese on the inside infused with fresh mint. Coming up next was the much anticipated feteer, Kazouza's signature dish served on a wooden cutting board; we went for a Mixed Meat Feteera (50LE) - comprised of sausages, minced meat and salami mixed with vegetables and cheese. We also wanted to try out Kazouza's Kofta sandwiches (12LE), served in fino bread. Taste-wise, the feteer was among some of the best we've ever had, boasting a fluffy texture, fresh ingredients and a balanced combination of cheese, meat and veggies. As far as the size goes, however, the portion was rather small. The kofta sandwiches were also a success; smothered in tomatoes and tehina, the meat wasn't too greasy and we loved flavourful seasoning. After our feteer and kofta fiesta - and after washing it all down with some cold refreshing lemon juice and some Karkadeh (11LE each) - we were ready for dessert. Dessert, however, wasn't ready for us; many of the items in the menu, including rice pudding and cream caramel, weren't available at the time of our visit. We eventually opted for  Cream and Custard Feteer (31LE). It must have been fate, though, because we quickly forgot about the unavailable dishes; filled with heavenly fresh cream, sprinkled with coconut and dripping a delicious syrup, it made up for the initial dessert choices we craved. Overall, we left Kazouza with mixed feelings; on one hand, the food and the service were excellent, the décor and props were creative, but on the other hand, the small portions and the unavailability of several items was disappointing.

Shopping

Bazaar Al Shaaban: Colourful Mosaic Lighting in Old Cairo's El Muez Street

Bazaar Al Shaaban: Colourful Mosaic Lighting in Old Cairo's El Muez Street

As a street that encompassses the beauty and authenticity of Islamic Cairo with all its architectural treasures, a walk down El Muez Street in Khan El Khalili always leaves you inspired. With hundreds of handicrafts shops and bazaars selling a variety of gifts and souvenirs in the area, it it's hard not to stop by and shop. Our last visit to the busy and vibrant street left us particularly drawn to a small boutique in El Muez Street selling colorful and beautifully crafted mosaic lighting called Bazaar Al Shaaban. Inside Bazaar Al Shaaban, hundreds of colorful mosaic lamps sit along the shelves, while colourful brass lamps in different designs dangle from the ceiling, and look nothing short of stunning.  Most of the lanterns exhibited in the bazaar are inspired by different cultural aesthetics; lanterns inspired by Islamic architecture - some of which are shaped to resemble the dome of the mosque - and lamps derived from the Ottoman style, made from brass and mosaic stones, as well as Indian lanterns with colorful mosaic-carved roses stand out in particular. Among our favourite pieces, however, the oval shaped, scattered-mosaic lamps colored in blue, red, white and green; create gorgeous reflections and light patterns in the dark. Other interesting mosaic lamps include vase-shaped lanterns, mosaic lamps which resemble an upside-down drum and square shaped lanterns. We were particularly amused to see small mosaic balls with mystical lighting which looked like a gypsy's crystal ball.   Prices of the lamps vary according to size, shape and style; small lamps sell for 70LE to 250LE and larger ones - with intricate copper and brass carvings - cost betwwen 400LE to 2500LE.     The pieces at Bazaar Al Shaaban are 100% handmade by Egyptian craftsmen, which the owners take great pride in. The lamps are perfect for adding a colorful touch to any room and also make for excellent gift ideas.

Cafés

Nutelleria Egypt: First Nutella Shop in Cairo Meets Expectations & Then Some

Nutelleria Egypt: First Nutella Shop in Cairo Meets Expectations & Then Some

One day, someone will tell the story of how the world fell in love with a hazelnut chocolate spread created in a small town in Italy. Yes, we speak of the worldwide phenomenon that is Nutella.   Few countries love to indulge in their sweet-tooth than Egypt and so news of a Nutelleria shop opening at Porto Cairo Mall and bringing Nutella-infused happiness was greeted with a delirium – and we're not exaggerating when we say that. With fresh smell of baked chocolate treats ghosting through the area, Nutelleria's Porto Cairo mall shop is difficult to miss. Decorated with several sizes of Nutella jar – including gigantic ones – and an extravagant melting chocolate fountain, our arrival and amazement was something akin to when Charlie entered into Willy Wonka's chocolate factory. Excited to try out everything and anything, we ordered a chocolate waffle infused with Nutella (24LE), a plain waffle with Nutella topping (24LE), a date tart with Nutella sauce (25LE) and a 'Nutella injection' – Nutelleria's avant-gardist approach to consuming Nutella through a syringe (10LE). With the venues still in soft opening mode, some items on the menu are unavailable – but everything we were able to get our hands on were outstanding. The waffles were the perfect combo of soft and crispy, smooth and chewy, with the Nutella adding the perfect chocolate kick.    The base of the date tart was crunchy and crisp making for a perfect textural contrast with the soft dates and rich Nutella sauce. We then sealed the deal with a Nutella injection comprised of Nutella's pure hazelnut spread – it's like a neater version of eating Nutella with a spoon.     Recovering from our Nutella fiesta, we were offered a complimentary Fiore Tea by the friendly staff; a tea made from a dry flower that blooms in hot water. Served with basil leaves, the tea, which filled the air with a strong, sweet aroma of sweetness, was perfectly soothing. Nutelleria also offers a large variety of cheesecakes, assorted tarts, ice-cream, as well as many other chocolaty items, soon to be available after their ground opening – and based on our visit, we can't wait. In the end the experience delivered what it promised. There's no critiquing Nutella itself – it is what it is – but as fans, we were relieved to find that the kitchen's craft was up to scratch – let's just hope it stays that way.

Nightlife

Som3a Basha: Sohour at Cairo Marriott's Charming Ramadan Tent

Som3a Basha: Sohour at Cairo Marriott's Charming Ramadan Tent

Jewel of the Zamalek crown, the Cairo Marriott Hotel & Omar Khayyam Casino never ceases to dazzle, offering rich oriental vibes with a refined twist, especially this year with the hotel's fancy Ramadan kheima, Som3a Basha.   A play on Khedive Ismail Pasha, who built the castle for a French Empress, the theme of the kheima is that of a castle setting with all its luxury coupled with the authentic feel of Egyptian street food served from carts and vendors. As we walked past the Marriott Promenade Garden leading to the tent, we were struck by a surprisingly beautiful cool weather in dry July – a promising start to the night. As we stepped inside, we were immediately taken by the elegant ambiance, stylish lanterns, beautiful castle inspired décor and smiling waiters. We picked a table with a good view of the stage, and waited patiently for the Sohour buffet to begin (10.30PM). As we waited, we were offered the drinks Karkade (Hibiscus)  and Tamr Hindy (Dates).   The Karkade was bold in flavour, and tartness, and despite being slightly warm, it was refreshing. The Tamr Hindy was easy on the sugar and had a pleasing hint of bitterness that complimented it. The live Takht show began soon after and we were transported – there was just something about the atmosphere, the spirit, the music and the night that made us forget how hungry we were. When we did remember how hungry we were, and the buffet opened, we headed on over to check it out. All the food, except for the salads and desserts, was served in authentic street-carts with a kitschy, yet classic Egyptian feel to them. We took a stroll down the aisle where the carts were, and had a good look at everything before we decided what to dive into. The buffet ranged from falafel and eggs, to grilled kofta and chicken. The salad selection consisted of assorted vegetables, dressings and yoghurt and though the selection provided no surprises, the food was quite flavoursome and we went back for seconds – of course. No Ramadan sohour would be complete without shisha and we opted for Grape and Peach (30LE each).  In terms of quality, both were bold and distinct, though the grape was a bit too harsh for our taste. In terms of coal maintenance, however, you'll need to be patient – on the busier nights, the shisha attendants, are somewhat overwhelmed. Then, as we started to feel a bit peckish, we went back for dessert and were met with a large selection of fruits and sweet Ramadan delights, our favourite of which was the Zalabya cart. You might have to time your dessert excursions, though, with the desserts quickly getting cold in the breezy weather. Overall, the aura and the entertainment at Som3a Basha were delightful and, although not faultless, the Marriott has made good use of its space.

Arts & Culture

Gayer Anderson Museum: One of Cairo's Most Unique Historical Landmarks

Gayer Anderson Museum: One of Cairo's Most Unique Historical Landmarks

Nothing is as alluring as a house with a story; something that is perfectly demonstrated with the Gayer Anderson Museum, which boasts an astonishing history, precious antiquities and valuable heritage, that are both exquisite and well-preserved. Located in Ahmed Ibn Tulun Street in the Sayida Zainab district, the Gayer Anderson mansion – later turned into a museum – was owned by Gayer Anderson Pasha, a British art collector who fell in love with Egypt's history and culture.      Perhaps best known for being an Orientalist who preserved history in one of Cairo's most beautiful buildings, Anderson (1881-1945) was a British officer who had an eventful life, to say the least. In 1904, Anderson worked with the Royal Army Medical Corps, providing medical care for British army personnel, before being transferred to the Egyptian army in 1907, then later operating as an inspector in the Egyptian Ministry of Interior. After his retirement, Anderson developed an interest in Egyptology and Oriental Studies. His journey through life and his passions are demonstrated inside the walls of the mansion where Anderson resided between 1935 and 1942.    The museum, which is adjacent to Ahmed Ibn Tulun Mosque, consists of two remarkable buildings; the larger one was built in 1632 and the smaller one in 1540.   The house holds 29 halls, decorated with Oriental architecture and designs in which artifacts are placed in a glass display to preserve them. Inside the Egyptian room, artifacts including iron pistols, daggers and swords, as well as Pharonic artifacts including a black and gold mummy case, a cast of Nefertiti's head and an ostrich egg engraved with a map of Egypt.  One room which documents the era in which the house was built is the child birth room, with hard wooden chairs with a simple hole carved in the seat was prepared for the baby's delivery is. Each room at the Gayer Anderson Museum has several lamps powered by olive oil, as well as a special granite cabinet to keep the food cool. In addition to a glorious view, the terrace contains several stone sinks and large ceramic containers used to store seeds and other dry foods. The museum still has remnants of the separate living quarters between men and woman; open, public and spacious areas were afforded for men, whereas living rooms designed for women encouraged a rather secluded atmosphere equipped with few examples of mashrabia – Oriental windows with wooden carvings. Women's living rooms are rich in decoration; every piece of furniture from the cabinets to the chairs are filled with intricate patterns and designs dating back to the Islamic period and some of the styles are also derived from Iran, India, China and Syria.  The 'secret room' was one of the most interesting to observe. The room was used as a perfect hiding place – its door looking like a storage cupboard – used to hide outlaws or merely for women to peek at house parties.   Anderson's personal room was equally fascinating, boasting an old-fashioned Persian bed and a smaller one beside it where it is said his housekeeper would sleep. One important thing to remember when visiting this museum is to never forget to look at the ceilings which are decorated with intricate Syrian designs. Perhaps the most beautiful aspect of the Grayer Anderson Museum story is that when Anderson was ill and had to move back home in 1942, he gifted his mansion with all its belongings to the Egyptian government, which, in return, granted him  with the title Pasha. One room in the house shows the original certificate from King Farouk. Gayer Anderson museum was home for several film sets, including James Bond's The Spy Who Loved Me and visiting this museum is like being transported back in time to an almost kitschy, unreal and sometimes even surreal space.   

Health & Fitness

Paradise Fit Zone: Your Ultimate Workout Destination in Sahel This Summer

Paradise Fit Zone: Your Ultimate Workout Destination in Sahel This Summer

Worried that your trips to Sahel may compromise the pounds you've worked so hard to shed this year? It's ok – you can be honest. This is a safe place and you needn't worry any longer; Paradise Fit Zone will come to your rescue.   Brought to you by Paradise Juice, Paradise Fit Zone is the go-to fitness arena that'll keep you pumped and loaded with energy all week long, with its series of workout sessions on Marassi's North Beach and Family Park everyday from 10AM, with many of the country's top gyms, fitness centres and groups set to take part. Officially launching with a grand opening on August 14th and going on till August 29th, Paradise Fit Zone encourages everyone to join the fitness fever, with all kinds of classes and sessions led by some of Egypt's top fitness experts awaiting. There are even several specialised kids' sessions planned, including gymnastic sessions. Some of the names set to appear at his festival of fitness include  The Fitness Playground, CF Hitters, Stallions, Jumping Fitness, CF Machines, The Fitness Grind, Fit Yard, Transbody Fitness, Pole Fit Egypt and Triple F amongst others. Exercise sessions at the Paradise Fit Zone are held all week long; weekday sessions are free of charge, though it is recommended that you arrive at least 15 minutes before a class – spaces are limited and you won't want to miss out. Weekends, meanwhile, will see Paradise Fit Zone host a a number of special mini-events, competitions and other fun fitness activities – just make sure you register here. There is already a lot of buzz around Paradise Fit Zone, following its soft opening – a buzz owed to the fact that it has been put together to cater for all levels of fitness fanaticism, so to speak, and all breeds of exercisers are sure to find something. Stay up-to-date with all the Paradise Fit Zone's schedules and events on the Paradise Juice Faceook and Instagram.

Sights & Travel

Astrotrips: Egypt’s First Astronomy Trip Initiative

Astrotrips: Egypt’s First Astronomy Trip Initiative

Imagine what thousands of millions of stars within our Milky Way would look like under the telescope. Now imagine that your gateway to get in touch with the universe, the space, the stars, is only as close as a hiking trip or a camping trip to the dessert. Egypt's first self-funded astronomy initiative, Astrotrips, provides exactly that, planning astronomy trips in Egypt and beyond, for all those who want to escape the city and explore the wonders of the universe.     We sat down with Astrotrips founder, Amr Abdel Wahab and his passionate team, who shared the Astrotrips story as well as unforgettable anecdotes from their trips all over Egypt. Born and raised in Upper Egypt, in a town with limited access to light, stargazing has always been a passion of Abdel Wahab; a passion that grew from looking up the sky during the night.   "The roof has always been the 'café' of women in Upper Egypt. Perhaps people don't know that stargazing is among Upper Egyptian women's favourite activities too," Abdel Wahab told us.  Around the same time, when Abdel El Wahab would sit on the roof of his house along with his mother and sisters, he grew a major interest in the science of astronomy and had countless questions on how the universe operates. Keen to fulfill his eagerness to learn about astronomy, Abdel Wahab's father, who was a Director of the Department of Libraries in the Educational Directorate, would bring home lots of astronomy books. Moving to Cairo at the age of 25, Abdel Wahab, who later became the head of the Astronomical Society in Cairo-an association that holds lectures and forums on astronomy- felt that raising people's awareness on what astronomy is was just not enough. "I realised that there is so much more to astronomy than generic lectures. I wanted to take my passion for astronomy beyond the theoretical science which leaves people with untapped information, rather than observational evidence," he said. Elba: Astrotrips Journey Begins  Astrotrips grew out of Abdel Wahab's dream to establish an initiative combining both astronomical knowledge alongside stargazing and discovery trips. The initiative was officially founded in 2014; but the Astrotrips journey began in 2012, when a team of adventurous friends-including Abdel Wahab-went on a trip to Elba, a natural reserve on the Egyptian Sudanese borders thousands of kilometres away from Cairo. After waiting for endless travel permits approved by Egypt's Frontier Guards, after travelling over 11 hours and over 1,600 km from Cairo, Abdel Wahab and his eager travelling buddies arrived to what is Egypt's biggest natural reserve. Located in the southeast corner of the Eastern desert of Egypt, Elba has a rich, unique and unparalleled biodiversity comprising of natural islands, mangroves, coral reefs and sand dunes as well as a group of coastal mountains, including Jabal Elba and Jabal Ebruq.   The team was fascinated to discover a new natural and primitive side to Egypt that very few people knew about. Elba is enriched with a rare wildlife with dozens of animal species that can only be found there; wild birds, eagles, desert deer and sub-saharan species including Zoril, Aardwold and Barbary sheep.   "The untouched beauty, the untapped nature, the plants, the mountains, the wildlife; everything was just incredible. I wanted the whole world to see that Egypt has such unbelievable resources and a beautiful picturesque nature that is yet to be known," commented Abdel Wahab.    From then on, encouraging locals to rediscover and explore Egypt's newfound sights became Astrotrips' main mission. So far, the team have organised trips to different areas across Egypt, including Nuweiba's Coloured Canyon, the White Desert, Bahariya and Siwa Oases. Astrotrips Programs Astrotrips plan their astronomical getaways around three main pillars; the first one is picking the right timing for stargazing , which, according to Abdel Wahab is best done during the beginning or the end of the Islamic lunar calendar-when the sky is moonless- away from any light pollution. Photo: Astrotrips Yarab Eg3alha Leila Soda (May it be a dark night) is Astrotrips' official motto before grabbing their telescopes and hitting the road. "We hope for a dark night or Leila Soda, because that's when the sky is most perfect for crystal clear vision of the universe," Abdel Wahab laughed.     The second pillar is about exploring Egypt's natural reserves because natural reserves, as pointed out by Abdel Wahab, combine both the astronomy and the natural angle.   "Egypt has 28 different natural reserves. Natural reserves including Jabal Kamel on the Egyptian-Libyan borders are formed from meteors hitting the earth's surface forming impact craters," explained Abdel Wahab. Meteor Shower Phenomenon: Astrotrips Groundbreaking Trip Observing astronomical phenomena in the universe is Astrotrips' third pillar; something that the team takes huge pride in-being the very first Egyptian initiative to track astronomical happenings under the telescope- including the Meteor Shower Phenomenon. "The earth revolves around the sun in an orbit; whereas other meteorites and masses in the space orbit around the sun too. Once the remnants of those meteorites interrupt with the earth's spin around the sun, they penetrate our atmosphere and burn. Meteorite burning objects appear under the telescope as small objects that light and disappear," Abdel Wahab explained, adding that the energy, mass and chemical composition of those meteors determine the intensity of lighting and colour seen through the telescope. "Sometimes you'll see white meteors, blue meteors, green ones; it's a fascinating phenomenon," he added. During their trips, the team of Astrotrips provides a navigation session to their travellers on how to read the sky, in which they learn to identify and locate their directions within the desert using a constellation of stars in the sky. "The sky has an average of 2,000 stars under the telescope. In every season we see a different constellation of stars, and that's what defines what we'll be able to observe," Abdel Wahab said.  The second activity involves participants learning how to put together and get the most out of a telescope, immersing their travellers in the process from start to finish. Bedouin Gardens, the White Desert and Kattameya Observatory: Astrotrips Best and Worst Trips The White Desert excursion is Astrotrips most popular trip; you get to enjoy stargazing as well as fascinated and drawn to the naturally shaped limestone formations in the desert.   Photo: Mark Yousry Perhaps Astrotrips most memorable excursion was visiting the Bedouin gardens in Sinai during Ramadan. Located 1,500 meters above sea level in Sinai, Astrotrips and a team of ardent travellers stayed with Siwan Bedouins under the stars.   "The air was fresh and clean, the food was organic and so delicious. We're talking about sipping an exquisite Qamar El Din juice picked freshly from the Bedouin apricot trees and praying under Sinai's starry sky. It's by far one of the most spiritual moments we've ever experienced," Abdel Wahab told us. When asked about their worst experience on one of their trips, Astrotrips Chief Coordinator, Mahmoud Khattab, said it happened during a stargazing trip to Kattameya Observatory last winter, when the weather suddenly dropped to -5 degrees and nobody was prepared for the cold to the point that the observatory guards at the sight provided woollen blankets to the entire team.  "The sudden turn in weather was completely unexpected, but our travellers handled it very well and kept up a great spirit," Khattab said.    On-Road Checklist Before hitting the road to one of Astrotrips' astronomy observatories, make sure you check their 'travellers checklist' which highlights the equipment you'll need for the day; think comfortable shoes and clothes, caps equipped with red headlights- caps designed for better observatory at night which can be found in Radio Shack- and a green laser for pointing at the stars and for navigation purposes. If the trip involves camping in the desert, Astrotrips provides tents and sleeping bags. Prices of the trips vary between50LE to 500LE, depending on nature of the trip and itinerary, which cover night-stays, camping, providing food and transportation.    "Our travellers are the ones longing to step away from the noise of the city, the ones who want to participate in new unconventional and exploratory trips. The spectrum is huge; we always have artists, engineers, doctors, students and children who want to learn more about astronomy. We were honoured to have had Omar Samra attending one of our trips," Abdel Wahab told Cairo 360, adding that some of their travellers come all the way from Sohag and Qena to attend their trips. What's Next for Astrotrips    Astrotrips aspires to create a "Portable Astronomical Observatory"; a car equipped with telescopes touring all over Egypt to spread people's awareness on astronomy while showing them the stars and the universe. "Some people can't afford to pay an average of 100LE for an astronomy observance trip; this is why I would like more and more people know how great the universe is," Abdel Wahab said. Astrotrips answers to the wish of many travellers out there craving adventurous out-of-the-box trips, allowing them to experience Egypt in a different light.  "Our love for astronomy and the universe is our engine at Astrotrips. Because if it wasn't for our passion, if it wasn't for seeing people's happiness during our trips, we wouldn't have started this initiative and we wouldn't have continued doing what we're doing." Stay posted with Astrotrips upcoming trips right here.  Main photo: Yasser El Amir 

TV & DVD

While We're Young: Cast Chemistry Carries Wandering Indie Film

While We're Young: Cast Chemistry Carries Wandering Indie Film

Often described as 'the new Woody Allen', writer-director Noah Baumbach – who made his film debut with Kicking and Screaming back in 1995 at the tender age of twenty-four – returns to the big screen with a distinctive dose of panache in the intelligent and witty cross-generation comedy, While We're Young.   Like so many indie, coming-of-age films, Baumbach's latest production asks the impossible-to-answer questions in this game called life. Set in Brooklyn, New York, the story is centred on forty-something year-old married couple, Josh (Stiller) and Cornelia (Watts), whose entire childless existence is brought into question when close friends Marina (Dizzia) and Fletcher (Horovitz) become parents for the first time. Forced to ask themselves some big life questions, the anxieties of being stuck in a rut, growing old and Josh not being able to finish his latest documentary project, are soon taken to another level when they meet a so-hip-it-hurts young couple, Jamie (Driver) and Darby (Seyfried). Charmed by their much-younger friends, Josh and Cornelia soon begin exploring and embracing their quirky life. Written and directed by Baumbach himself, it's definitely not the most even and balanced of pictures, though its honest and humorous look at the challenges of getting old proves to be a premise worth exploring. The funny and the not-so-funny differences between the two generations is portrayed with a mix of humour and sombre realism and it's definitely not hard to spot a bit of Woody Allen-influence in the way the dialogue progresses. As far as the performances go, Stiller is easy to root for and his portrayal of a middle-aged documentarian struggling to make sense of his existence is funny and relatable. Meanwhile, Watts, Driver and Seyfried are superb and the onscreen chemistry between all four is evident throughout.   While We're Young is one of those ambiguous indie-darling films that the critics have raved about, but audiences have been much more hesitant about – the old adage that we fear what we don't understand is just as true in the world of film. The plot is engaging and welcomingly simple, though there is a sense that Baumbach doesn't really have a clear idea where he wants the story go. But there's something endearing about its misguided and muddled nature that serves to be a perfect reflection on its equally disorientated characters.   
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Win! All You Can Eat Sushi for Two at Conrad Cairo's Kamala
Win! All You Can Eat Sushi for Two at Conrad Cairo's Kamala