Tag - mombasa

Jina langu ni Hassan Faisal Ali

Your name and what do you do?
My Names are Hassan Faisal Ali. I am a Film producer and Director at Coastal Films productions. A Hotelier by profession and an event’s organizer and also a music producer.

Tell us about Coast Film Productions ltd?
Coastal Films was started way back 2009 to promote The Films Talent at The Kenyan Coast. We were motivated to start Coastal Films when we realized the number of homes in Mombasa who had an urge of watching Movies. At that time most homes were watching Indian Movies before Nigerians took over our screens.

Why did you go to into production?
I love Films, so I decided to learn how to do scripts thereafter I decided to start shooting movies.

How many series and Movies have you produced?
I have done 7 movies so far

We have few movies and series from Mombasa, what do you think is the problem?
The cost of doing Movies is not cheap and the market is not readily available. We have no sponsors due to the fact this is an Islamic town. The Able people will not sponsor story lines on violence etc. Companies here also have no authority to fund as decisions are made from their head offices in Nairobi

Where do you see the creative industry in Mombasa 5 years from now?
In the next Five years the coast will be leading in productions once we streamline the creative industry market. The coast has what it takes to do good movies; we have superb locations and talent down here.

What criteria do you use to select a script, screenwriter, director, etc.?
This relies on the story line and the budget plus available funds.

What is your latest project?
My latest project was Yoba Movie which we have shot with a Holland films company called CLFILMS.

Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?
One of the biggest producer in Africa

Parting shot
The Government needs to invest more on creative arts industry in order to create self employments to the youth as it’s unable to provide employment to all this youths.

Salim Mansoor Halwa

The history of Mombasa is intriguing; with the governance of Oman Arabs and Portuguese we have Kenyans who have Arabic and Portuguese ancestry. The Oman Arabs have different traditions that have been passed on generation by generation in Mombasa. One of them is making of Halwa (Haluwa), a sugary snack that is served with coffee (Kahawa chungu).

The Halwa is made of different ingredients including starch, eggs, sugar, water, ghee, saffron, cardamom, nuts and rose water.  The Mix is cooked in a big copper pot, stirred vigorously till it becomes a gelatinous substance.

In Mombasa, the first Oman Arab to open a Halwa shop was Salim Mansur Al- Mawly in the 1930’s on Abdulnasser Road.

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It was opened to serve the community with delicious and special Halwa for all occasions and celebrations.  Salim Mansur cooked and served Halwa for over 50 years till his death in 1980, where his son Nassir Salim Mansur took over the business. When Nassir took over the business, he also taught his son the special ingredients and cooking techniques to Abdulmajid.  In just seven years after his inheritance Nassir passed away, and Abdulmajid took over the business up to date.

After a few years at the Abdulnasser road location, they moved to a new Location on Biashara Street (Markiti side). For 70 years they have served in the same shop up to today.  They specialize in Plain Halwa, and Almonds. They cater to all occasions, be it a wedding, a Maulidi (Prophet Mohamed’s Day of Birth). It can be served in a big aluminum tray, or small cups for ease of distribution. Although the original was served in small woven basket called Kitalifa, the baskets were woven by Bajun women from Lamu.  Since there were no refrigerators at that time, it was known for the basket to preserve the Halwa for a longer period of time.

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Kitalifa

The interiors of the shop have remained the same for all these years, giving you a taste of history. Every morning you will find a group of old men playing backgammon while eating Halwa and drinking kahawa chungu (coffee).

For orders and prices call Abdulmajid 0722 587 430

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A swahili Poem about Kitalifa:

Kitaa kilo kitito
Shubiri yalo pungua

Kikatiwa mtunguto
Henda kikilewalewa

Ikatiwa ili moto
Ikiketi ikapoa

Ndio maana ya haluwa kutiwa kitaani.

A visit inside Salim Mansoor through pictures:


Jina Langu ni Tima Keilah

Your name and what do you do?

Hi, my name is Tima Keilah. I am a lawyer by profession, LLB from The University of Nairobi. I work with the County Government of Mombasa in my capacity as Miss Tourism.   I am also the CEO and founder of Sterling Modeling &Marketing Group, a company that deals with professional management of models and offering marketing solutions to corporates. I am also the UBER Ambassador to Mombasa and GLOVEPA Peace Ambassador.

I have a passion for  youth development and women in particular which has me constantly engaging with various organizations, to name a few; Girls On A Mission, UPIA, Arigatou International, Adam Smith International, and A&J Heclife.

Why did you want to become miss tourism?

I have a deep passion and love for Mombasa having been born and raised here all my life. I understand the important role that the tourism sector plays on the County’s economy and the lives of the people. The Industry has for a time been struggling leading to a lot of suffering in the community. Through Miss Tourism, I felt that I could help ameliorate this situation and aid in restoring the sector.

What are the roles of Miss Tourism Mombasa? Do you face any challenges?

The title of Miss Tourism Kenya Mombasa seeks to personify Kenya’s Tourism strengths through marketing the County and Nation both nationally and internationally. The assignment of Miss Tourism is to rally people towards the Promotion of six key Tourism development pillars identified as Tourist attractions, Investment opportunities, Environment conservation practices, Cultural diversity, Hospitality & beauty of our people and Peace.

Yes, I do face a couple of challenges that include acquiring funding for tourism development projects and insufficient media exposure.

Tourism is still suffering a bit right now. What can we do as Mombasa residents help boost our tourism?

We should work together in marketing the county to increase the positive information about the destination. Tourism is driven by the community around it. I think social network is an important tool for shaping perception and if we as the people of Mombasa were to positively utilize it to showcase what our county has to offer, in terms of tourism, I believe we would see a positive shift on things. Also, if we all took measures to keep and maintain the city clean, it would be a big boost to the tourism sector.

However, the situation has been improving thanks to the efforts of stakeholders in the industry with Mombasa having scooped 1st position as Africa’s Leading Destination in the recently concluded World Travel Awards 2016. The foreign direct investment by international companies such as UBER into the County is also a clear indication that the industry is on a steady rise.

Drug issue in Mombasa is high; do you think parents are to blame or society?

I don’t think you can blame any particular cause for the drug menace in Mombasa as it is caused by many different things. However as a lawyer I believe the law is the solution to all of society’s problems and by coming up with stiffer legislation and enforcement of the same the issue can be curbed.

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Tell us more about Naipenda Mombasa and future goals.

I started the NaipendaMombasa Campaign as my Miss Tourism Kenya Mombasa County project as a way for the people of Mombasa to express their passion and love for the County and to improve the state of tourism in the county by showcasing popular tourist attractions, culture and cuisine, art, fashion, music and the beauty and magic of Mombasa County.

I recently launched the NaipendaMombasa campaign merchandise i.e. t-shirts, mugs, water-bottles, caps, key holders etc. so that everyone can carry a little bit of Mombasa everywhere they go. All products are sort and made in Mombasa, giving employment opportunities to our youth, with part of the proceeds going to charity work.

My vision for the campaign is to see it attain mass popularity as a way of boosting Mombasa’s tourism industry.

In Mombasa, we have a lot of tuk-tuks with no proper management system. In your opinion, how can they be managed?

Again, through proper legislation and enforcement of the law tuk-tuks can be managed. I think they play an important role in the transport sector of Mombasa and employ many locals. They are also a unique feature of the island and travel experience in Mombasa.

It is difficult to get into the modeling industry, how did you manage to succeed?

Yes, it is difficult, but like in my case, and in any other profession, hard work, patience, perseverance, and most of all desire are key ingredients to success.

Who inspires you?

My family and fans are a great source of inspiration. I also look up to the First Lady and the Governor of Mombasa’s work ethic.

Parting shot

Mombasa ni sisi, na sisi ni Mombasa. #NaipendaMombasa

 

Kenya Blog Awards

Life in Mombasa has been nominated for the Kenya Blog Awards 2016.
Kenya Blog Award recognizes and awards exceptional Kenyan bloggers in different categories every year. It is organized by the Bloggers Association of Kenya.
Please take your time to vote and spread the word.
The link to vote is: http://www.blogawards.co.ke/vote/
Go to the bottom to Best County Blog – vote for Life in Mombasa (www.lifeinMombasa.com)

Thank You

 

Swahili Breakfast: Mbaazi and Mahamri

It’s not a Swahili breakfast without Mbaazi and Mahamri (Mahambri), if you have lived in coast you know this is true. A true coastal tradition passed on generation by generation, and still going on up to date.

Mbaazi is made of pigeon peas cooked in coconut milk, while Mahamri (Mahambri) is a Swahili delicacy eaten with other meals to compliment the taste. It’s fascinating that in Mombasa, this is a very common around town. You will find food vendors around different areas selling the combo at a reasonable price. A cup of Mbaazi goes from 30 kshs to 50kshs, while a Mahamri (Mahambri) goes for 5 kshs a piece. People on their way to work will stop over these vendors and devour in a coastal breakfast leaving them full for the rest of the day.


 

Jina Langu ni Mauko Maunde

mauko 1

Your Name and what you do?

Mauko Maunde. I’m a lot of things rolled into one. Blogger, Web developer, Poet, Band manager and a trainee civil engineer.

What’s the one thing that amazes you?

Beauty in its rawest, most innocent form. It is all around us, in the sights and people around us. That, and the capacity for humanity in people. Despite all that happens, those people that remain “good” and restore your faith in humanity never cease to amaze me.

Tell us about Artists in Mombasa, do you think they are doing enough to be recognized?

I don’t think so. Wanataka kuchezea nyumbani hapa. Most do not want to get out of their comfort zones. They are going the tried and tested way forgetting that this line of work requires one to think beyond the gamut and try out new things. Go out there into the unknown, so to speak.

You manage different artist, what is the one challenge you face the most?

Getting them gigs to perform, then getting them paid after an event. On top of that is finding producers they can work well with, but these are apparently “normal” challenges.

Tell us about Sanaa Salon?

Sanaa Salon was borne of the need for a platform for artistes and writers to showcase thier various creative endeavours and create a large community where networks can be created and as result utilised to grow both individuals and the arts industry as a whole. It is a showcase of creative works and opinions from various stakeholders, but primarily young artistes.

Our publishing and marketing division, at www.books.sanaasalon.com also seeks to offer convenient and affordable publishing for budding writers who would otherwise not afford the exhorbitant costs associated with mainstream publishers. We do this by creating ebooks in various formats and distributing the same across markets.

Blogging has not been received well in Mombasa, compared to Nairobi. Do you think this will change?

Yes. I think the tide is changing, albeit too slowly, but we are headed there. I have seen a number of blogs come up in the recent past. Pretty decent ones I must add. Coupled with the establishment of the Coast BAKE chapter, the future looks good.

What is required, I think, is an awareness by Coastal young people of the immense opportunities blogging offers, both in terms of self-development and expansion of thought spaces; not to mention the obvious financial gains that can be achieved from a well- written blog.

How do you manage time to run your blog efficiently?

I realised the best way to handle it is to ask for help. I know, most people wouldn’t want to cede control of their blogs to others, but it’s the only way to maintain an active blog with a wide variety of perspectives.

Since one of my blogs is for events, I thought it would be easier and more convenient to crowdsource its content, so I only have to edit the submitted posts.

How do you want to improve yourself in the next year?

Ah, we are making new year resolutions now, are we? Well, for one I’d like to see better performance from by blogs and other projects; perhaps even take them up as a full-time gig. I want to invest more in growing the literary space in Mombasa because I realised that makes me happy, and I’m content when I’m happy.

Can you name some of your favourite bloggers and explain why they are your favourites?

Well, you for one. I love your photos. They represent a perspective of Mombasa only those of us who live here see, a beautiful face they don’t show much elsewhere. Keep up the good work. There is Jackson Biko too, I want to conceive and nurture words in the way he does so when I let them out into the world they can hold their own, blow minds and change lives. For the better. Ah, Jacque Ndinda. I love her. Her writing I mean.

Parting shot

A while back, someone mentioned off-handedly that Mombasa was backward, and the residents too daft for their own good. I could have argued otherwise then, in their  defence, but I did not. I’m glad I can do that now

Safaricom Jazz: Rhythm and Serenity

The wind whistled slowly as the night crept in, the heat engulfed the air it was bound to be a beautiful night. The crowds started streaming in flocking the grounds at Butterfly pavilion for the Safaricom Jazz. The  Gates opened at 6:30 in the evening and cars were directed to designated parking areas, while others were taken to the venue by various buses.

The decor at the dome was impeccably done, with the seating area, draped in white and the dome well lit, setting the mood for a lovely night of jazz. Everyone was seated by 8pm eagerly waiting for the show to start.  With various vendors set up at nearby tents selling food and drinks, as well as other vendors selling African artifacts, there were enough activities to indulge in before the show started. We all love photos, and Safaricom definitely knew this, by providing a photo booth, where all in attendance got a chance to look glam while having their photos taken!

The crowd was ready for a soulful night, the ladies all dressed and the gents looking dashing as ever, this was not your everyday music concert. Finally at around 9:30pm, Edward Perseen and the Different Faces band gave a spectacular performance, including a special rendition of jazz with a Coastal feel to it, that got the whole crowd dancing and ready for the main show! They are definitely a force to reckon with, when it comes to the jazz scene in Kenya.

Kirk Whalum graced the stage with passion and fire, and his soulful performance made you reconnect with your spirit. In his first piece he started off with the Gospel according to Jazz from Chapter 1 to 5, that left everyone in the crowd in awe. His energy resonated in every song he played, as they shared the stage with Gerald Albright and Norman Brown. Many people among the crowd, weren’t familiar with Shelea Fraizer’s music, but she captivated everyone with her sultry voice and skills on the piano; she’s an upcoming artist that we should definitely look out for in the scene.

Norman Brown was the highlight of the event, his infusion of and contemporary jazz left the audience satisfied  with every succulent inflected note. The crowd moved to his beats, creating a wave of bliss and emotions that swept over the entire audience. He has a way with the guitar and it was evident when he showed off his skills while strumming the guitar behind his back as the crowd looked on in amazement!

Finally, Gerald Albright  came on stage, the crowd still excited and yearning for more jazz tunes. Gerald Albright has this soulful way of making everyone in the crowd, transfixed to his performance; his emotions while playing the saxophone, leaves you in a daze and it’s no wonder that when it comes to jazz, he definitely is a maestro!

The Jazz  Festival was truly a breath of fresh air in Mombasa, a few lucky winners among the crowd were fortunate enough to win phones and airtime thanks to Safaricom. The jazz enthusiast and CEO of Safaricom, Bob Collymore has definitely paved the way and set high standards for  jazz festivals in Nairobi and Mombasa. Safaricom outdid themselves with a well organized concert; from the decor, security, sound and not to mention the entertainment from the jazz maestros, that culminated the year well. Mombasa looks forward to many more concerts, and probably jazz musicians gracing us for the next Safaricom Jazz Festival!

This what others had to say about the event :

Maureen  Bandari

This was my first time attending the Safaricom Jazz event. I didn’t know most of the performers so I was a little skeptical of going but I knew that we don’t get the pleasure of having concerts like this in Mombasa all the time so I decided to go and check it out. First of all, the security was good and there is nothing as awesome as feeling secure during times like this when terror is everywhere. I loved the organization of the event since everything was moving swiftly and the dome itself was well decorated and organized.

I loved the caliber of people that turned up and their energy. The artists were engaging with the audience and playing familiar music every once in a while. It was truly an awesome experience ,swaying to the sound of the instruments, laughing at the jokes and being in awe of the amazing voices. The artists left us wanting more by the time the event came to a close end.

On areas of improvement, this being Mombasa a dome sometimes is too confining which makes it too hot. Unless you go ahead and install fans as well, I think an open air concert is much better and more comfortable. Other than that this is an event I will definitely attend come next year’s version.

Winnie Araka

The thing I liked most about the event was the ambiance. The crowd was great and appreciative. Everyone was on their feet and there wasn’t one dull moment. The musicians were on point. It is worth noting too that the event organizers were very organised, with transport to carry attendees to and from the parking.

All in all, it was a memorable event.

Kelvyne M. John

Awesome!!

Sights and sounds from Safaricom Jazz Mombasa:


Safaricom Jazz at the Coast

The Safaricom International Jazz Festival, one of the country’s biggest music events, is finally here again. This December, Safaricom will not only host the much awaited show in Nairobi, but the Coastal jazz lovers will themselves be getting a treat too in Mombasa. The festival which has been taking place for the past 2 years is Kenya’s premier Jazz exhibition. With big names like Isaiah Katumwa, Jonathan Butler, Salif Keita, Richard Bona, Rhythm Junks, Jimmy Dludlu, The Nile Project and Yuval Cohen, the festival has steadily been garnering a cult following since its inception on the 23rd of February 2014. The Safaricom International Jazz Festival has come to outgrow the Ngong Racecourse as venue and this December it moves to two big stages, The Carnivore in Lang’ata and The Haller Park Butterfly Pavilion in Mombasa.

The move to hold the festival in Mombasa too is a much anticipated move with the city being home to a lot of art and Jazz enthusiasts. The lifting of the travel ban will also prove to be an advantage as a lot of hotels have reported early bookings for both international and local tourists who will be there around the Christmas period.

But yes, with the numerous venues in Mombasa, what makes the Butterfly Pavilion Safaricom’s choice? Over the years, the Butterfly Pavilion has proven to be a paragon of both serenity and beauty. It is an extension of the Haller Park, a rehabilitation project by Lafarge owned Bamburi Cement and one of Mombasa’s most popular wildlife sanctuaries. The Butterfly Pavilion, formerly known as Bamburi Forest Trails, is lush forest with trails and an assortment of wildlife including butterflies, birds and vegetation. It is home to a number of ecosystems all thriving alongside each other to bring about a harmonic natural balance. The park literally demonstrates just how beautiful environmental conservation can get.

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Add all that together and you get an epitome of beauty. A magnificent scenery perfect for the art-enthusiast with refined taste. The park guarantees a magical view from the open space where the festival is supposed to be held. The open spaces are perfect for blankets kind of setting with one huge stage and with revelers bringing their own blankets or vikoi, or a formal arrangement. Simply put, when you combine the beautiful live jazz music with the magical view at the Butterfly Pavilion, you are sure to get lost in a world of colour.

This year, The Safaricom International Jazz festival features four huge international artists who join together as a quartet to give you “A Gospel According to Jazz”. The quartet consisting of highly acclaimed Grammy award winners Kirk Whalum and Norman Brown, Grammy award nominee Gerald Albright and newcomer Shelea Frazier will be the main act. All four artistes have impressive music achievements with all having received international accolades and titles. They will be curtain raised by Edward Parseen and the Different Faces Band, and AfroSync who are local jazz sensations.

All proceeds from the Safaricom Jazz Lounge will go towards supporting Ghetto Classics, a music programme based in Korogocho Slums that seeks to provide an opportunity for children from underprivileged backgrounds to explore their musical talents.

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Tickets to the Safaricom Jazz Lounge go on sale on Friday 20th November, and will be retailing at Ksh.1,500 for advance tickets, Ksh.2,000 at the gate and Ksh.500 for students. They will be available from select Safaricom outlets (Sarit Centre, Thika Road Mall, Galleria Mall, Junction Mall, BuruBuru, Village Market, I&M and Nakumatt Mega in Nairobi, and Nyali and Rex Shop in Mombasa). To find out more about the festival, go to safaricomjazzfestival.co.ke

The serene Butterfly Pavilion:


The Beauty of Heena

Every Eid and during weddings women in Mombasa adorn their hands with floral henna patterns, some with the black dye and others natural henna.

In Mombasa, there are henna artist who do the henna designs around town but the most common place is called Bin Sidiq center on Bawazir Lane. There are few salons located inside the shopping arcade that primarily do henna art. In addition, you can find a few on Facebook where you can see samples of their work before you visit them and book online.

 

The designs depend on status, for little girls normally a small simple design pattern suffices. For a single girl, the art goes just up to the wrist of the hand whereas for married women it is not restricted.

It is believed that a woman must always adorn her hands with henna to look beautiful for her husband so that whenever she is with him, he sees the beautiful and colourful artwork.

The price starts at 300 kshs for a smaller design i.e to the wrist and the higher the design on the hand it goes the higher the price.  Bridal designs are different from the other designs because it is the bride’s first night with her husband she has to look extra beautiful.

Different cultures have specific designs; you can Indian design Mehndi or United Arab Emirates Khaleeji style, also Sudanese black dye style.

The process includes mixing the henna powder with water, and the designer puts the wet henna in a cone which is used to draw with. Once the henna is applied on your skin, you wait for about forty five minutes to one hour for it to dry.After that, you just peel off the dried henna and normally you are advised not to touch water for 6-8 hours so the henna can darken preferably overnight. These days henna is mixed with a thinner which speeds up the process of drying.