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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 21 April 2019

Will Smith is delighted to be in Dubai, again

Select guests walked the black carpet to gain access to the VIP British Airways reception at the elegant lounge Noir, which was adorned with exotic flowers.
Will Smith speaks at a press conference in Dubai. The American actor is in Dubai to promote the film Suicide Squad. AP
Will Smith speaks at a press conference in Dubai. The American actor is in Dubai to promote the film Suicide Squad. AP

Dressed in a two-tone mustard and grey jumper, indigo jeans and high-shine maroon sneakers, Will Smith cut a casual figure as he arrived at the Kempinski hotel in Dubai’s Mall of the Emirates on Sunday.

Select guests walked the black carpet to gain access to the VIP British Airways reception at the elegant lounge Noir, which was adorned with exotic flowers.

Once inside, guests were handed boxes of freshly made popcorn and offered canapés, including salmon tartare with gold-leaf garnish, lamb chops and chicken satay.

Running only slightly behind schedule, a grinning Smith made his entrance to whoops and cheers from the crowd.

“Hello, wow! Nice – very tidy!” he said, surveying the sea of faces as he took his seat on the stage for a brief ­question-and-answer session with two BA pilots.

A frequent traveller to the UAE, Smith spoke of his passion for the country’s outdoor pursuits.

“You just have to start the day at Skydive Dubai,” he said. “And it’s the best way to see The Palm Jumeirah – from high up. I also play a lot of golf and there are some of the best courses in the world here.”

The 47-year-old actor – who was in town for a special screening of his latest movie, Suicide Squad – also spoke about his daughter Willow’s trip to the UAE earlier this year. The 15-year-old had also swung by the UAE in August last year, performing alongside her brother, Jaden, at The Dubai Mall as part of Dubai Summer Surprises to mark the launch of their T-shirt brand ­Msfts.

“She was here a couple of months ago and she FaceTime’d me from out in the desert on a camel,” Smith said. “I thought that was so beautiful. It was the cross of modern technology and the region’s ancient mode of transportation. Really beautiful. And by the way – your Wi-Fi is really great here.”

While this trip to the UAE was a brief one, Smith shared his shortlist of upcoming holiday destinations.

“I love Trinidad, when I want to go away and completely disappear,” he said. “I also love South Africa. As for where I’d like to go, well the Seychelles, Maldives, Bora Bora and Indonesia – they are top of my list.”

rduane@thenational.ae

Updated: August 7, 2016 04:00 AM

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