Global Travel News

Azerai Can Tho Launches Private Pool Villas

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Azerai Can Tho Launches Private Pool Villas - TRAVELINDEXCan Tho, Vietnam, January 19, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / As travelers around the world look to turn the page on the pandemic, one thing is becoming increasingly clear – space is now the ultimate luxury.

With this in mind, Azerai Can Tho has launched one- and two-bedroom private pool villas to complement the resort’s existing three-, four- and five-bedroom villas, offering exclusive and private new accommodation options for groups of all sizes, from couples to extended families.

“These one- and two-bedroom private pool villas open the door to a whole new class of traveler seeking an enhanced sense of seclusion and exclusivity,” said General Manager Nicolas Pillet.

The resort’s villas range from 636sqm (Pool Villas) to 784sqm (River Pool Villa) to an expansive 1,583 sqm (Mekong Pool Villa), offering guests abundant privacy along with other unique benefits, such as dedicated villa hosts who can help to personalize the experience.

And, of course, villa guests have access to all of the resort’s other world-class amenities and culinary offerings, in addition to private luxury boat cruises in the Mekong Delta, lavish picnics under the resort’s mature banyan trees and other local excursions and activities.

Three hours by car from Ho Chi Minh City, Azerai Can Tho is situated on a private islet in the Mekong Delta that’s accessible only by boat. The resort’s lush grounds cover more than eight hectares and support 60 rooms in addition to the five private pool villas that deliver residential-style accommodation.

Designed by French-Canadian architect Pascal Trahan, the villas at Azerai Can Tho embrace the resort’s tropical surroundings, with sliding-glass doors in most rooms able to open up significantly to draw in outdoor breezes.

The interiors feature a blend of stone, slate, light-coloured woods and rattan accents, with pitched ceilings that expand an overall sense of spaciousness. The locally sourced woods and stones were sourced in Vietnam by a Scandinavian design firm. The overarching aesthetic is sleek and minimalist.

The design signature in the pool villas is similar to that of Azerai Can Tho’s other guest rooms, featuring an understated elegance that is both practical and comfortable. Furniture and décor embrace neutral colour tones, and the exteriors have been designed to blend harmoniously with the tropical island setting.

Azerai Can Tho was named one of the “Top 25 Resorts in Asia” (No. 13) in Condé Nast Traveler’s 2021 Readers’ Choice Awards earlier this year, becoming one of only six properties in Vietnam to make the popular annual “best-of” list. The awards are the longest-running and most prestigious recognition of excellence in the travel industry.

ABOUT AZERAI
Azerai is a new story and brand of resorts offering guests simple elegance, refined design and discreet and attentive service in places of unique beauty and cultural interest. The brand was formed by hotelier Adrian Zecha, and the name is derived from Zecha’s initials and the latter part of the Persian word caravanserai, which references the storied old inns of the Middle East.

Azerai Can Tho is a peaceful retreat set on a lush islet in the Mekong Delta. Azerai Ke Ga Bay marks the brand’s first oceanfront resort. And Azerai La Residence, Hue is a historic city resort overlooking the Perfume River in Vietnam’s former imperial capital.

 

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Meliá Phuket Mai Khao Celebrates Opening

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Meliá Phuket Mai Khao Celebrates Opening - TRAVELINDEXPhuket, Thailand, January 19, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / Meliá Phuket Mai Khao, a wellness-inspired resort that fronts Phuket’s longest stretch of sand with a chilled-out beach club and private pool villas has opened on Thailand’s largest island.

The resort is the second five-star property to be launched in Thailand under Spanish hotel group Meliá Hotels International as part of a brand roll-out in key destinations across the Kingdom.

Situated on secluded Mai Khao beach, commanding eight acres of Phuket’s northwestern coastline on the Andaman Sea, Meliá Phuket Mai Khao opened its doors for business on December 1.

The 30-suite and 70-villa resort, owned by residential real estate developer Phuket Villa Group, is a 15-minute drive to Phuket International Airport and near an array of attractions including Mai Khao Marine Turtle Foundation, Sirinat National Park, and Wat Phra Thong temple.

The resort’s design melds traditional and contemporary Thai aesthetics with a smattering of Mediterranean accents and uses a neutral palette of colours to complement Mai Khao’s sandy shoreline. High ceilings and decorative metal screens make the most of the natural surrounds and sunny, tropical weather.

GUEST SUITES AND VILLAS

Meliá Phuket Mai Khao’s contemporary, light-filled and spacious Mediterranean-inspired accommodations – with a focus on simple, clean lines and indoor-outdoor living – comprise 30 one-bedroom suites and 70 one-bedroom villas.

The resort has three accommodation categories. Each features a single bedroom and is differentiated by an anchoring amenity — be it an outdoor bathtub, a private plunge pool or a wellness arrangement.

All of the suites and villas feature outdoor bathtubs, open-air showers and outdoor terraces to take advantage of Phuket’s tropical climate, which averages 28 degrees Celsius year round. Exquisite gardens and fixtures such as white stucco exterior walls also ensure secluded enclaves and the utmost privacy.

The 78sqm suites are complemented by cabanas and the 85sqm one-bedroom villas have private plunge pools.

At the top of the accommodation scale, the 15 wellness villas each feature an open-air Vitamin C shower, ultrasonic essential oil diffuser, GermGuardian air purifier, Tempur-Pedic pillows, aromatic salts for the outdoor bathtub, a fit ball and yoga mat. A highlight of staying at a wellness villa is a daily 60-minute massage.

Mod-cons in all of the accommodations include individually controlled air-conditioning, 43-inch LCD TV with satellite channels, Bluetooth speaker, Nespresso coffee maker and gourmet capsules and more.

The minibar has healthy snacks such as energy bars on request. Trays and tissue boxes made from banana leaves are among sustainable items in the suites and villas.

DINING

The resort’s diverse dining landscape comprises four outlets under the stewardship of culinary director Luca Mancini and adds a dash of Mediterranean flavor to Phuket’s culinary scene.

Adjacent to a beach pool framed with cabanas and sun lounges, the Gaia Beach Club celebrates Spain’s famed gastronomy by serving Mediterranean and fusion cuisine from an open kitchen and a creative cocktail selection from a long bar.

A warm and intimate setting adorned with timber finishes, SASA is an elegant all-day dining restaurant that specialises in international and Thai cuisine. SASA offers a healthy, freshly made breakfast and delectable Thai set lunches and dinners.

The Elyxr Café features a spacious lounge area with comfortable sofas and a selection of books and serves coffee and tea.

The Pool Bar is a swim-up affair at the centre of the resort that serves a range of refreshments including fresh juices, smoothies and cocktails.

SPA, WELLNESS AND RECREATION

Privately tucked away behind the lobby and Elyxr Café, Meliá’s signature YHI Spa is 300sqm and home to five treatment rooms. In addition to its extensive menu of massages, facials, body scrubs and wraps, spa therapists also provide poolside and in-villa treatments.

The resort will offer wellness packages that include healthy menus and freshly squeezed juices as well as activities such as meditation, yoga, and walks and cycling amid stunning natural scenery.

The fitness center is equipped with treadmills, ellipticals, exercise bikes, and weights machines. The kids club Kidsdom has workshops to keep youngsters entertained and the resort also provides a babysitting service. Recreational pursuits on offer range from horse riding on the beach, to scuba diving at Racha Yai, Koh Dok Mai, Phi Phi Island and Shark Point, to golf at the nearby Blue Canyon Country Club.

MICE FACILITIES

The resort’s conference facilities include a grand ballroom and two additional multi-function rooms at 231sqm. The Grand Ballroom totals 131sqm and caters to up to 100 guests for a standing cocktail reception or 88 guests for a sit-down dinner. The two adjacent multipurpose rooms are each 47sqm that seat up to 16 guests for a boardroom meeting.

The resort’s event planners provide customized catering to suit any occasion. Mini mindfulness sessions also enhance the wellbeing of attendees.

“Meliá Phuket Mai Khao’s debut marks such an exciting time for Phuket, signaling our genuine optimism for the future of tourism on Thailand’s largest island,” said Mr Maetapong Upatising, Phuket Villa Group’s Managing Director.

“The team and I are thrilled we could bring such a significant hotel debut to fruition during these unprecedented times and we’re delighted with the interest in our resort so far despite the difficulties stemming from the global pandemic,” said Ms Magdalena Martorell, Meliá Phuket Mai Khao’s General Manager.

“With its distinct focus on guest wellbeing, Meliá Phuket Mai Khao brings Meliá’s sunny Spanish hospitality and passion for service to Phuket, as well as stringent health and safety measures to combat COVID-19,” said Mr Ignacio MartinArea Managing Director South East Asia of Meliá Hotels International.

Elsewhere in Thailand, Meliá Koh Samui debuted in January 2020 with a nautical theme underscored by boat suites made from refurbished merchant vessels. Meliá Chiang Mai is slated to open in April 2022 with a rooftop bar featuring two bars connected by a glass bridge. INNSiDE by Meliá Bangkok Sukhumvit, the first property of its brand in Thailand, with 176 guestrooms, is due to open 2023.

Meliá Phuket Mai Khao has launched a seven-night sandbox package priced from THB 38,500 (USD 1155) for direct bookings before March 24, 2022 for stays before March 31, 2022. The offer includes daily breakfast for two, a one-way airport transfer and 20% off food and beverage as well as laundry.

About Meliá Hotels & Resorts
Meliá Hotels & Resorts is the best-known international brand in the portfolio of the Meliá Hotels International company; it has more than 100 city and resort hotels in the main leisure and business destinations of Europe, Asia, Africa and America. The brand offers exemplary meetings and events facilities in all important business cities as well as in exotic locations, catering to the ever-expanding conference and incentive travel market. As part of its innovation philosophy and new positioning, Meliá Hotels & Resorts has reinvented itself to cater to every aspect of the guests’ wellbeing. Unique experiences are created for guests and are defined by relaxation, quality time and personalised services. For a balanced lifestyle, Meliá Hotels & Resorts instinctively understands the guests’ needs and lifestyle expectations, which is an integral part of its redefined identity.

About Meliá Hotels International
Founded in 1956 in Mallorca (Spain), Meliá Hotels International operates more than 380 hotels (portfolio and pipeline) throughout more than 40 countries, under the brands Gran Meliá Hotels & Resorts, Paradisus by Meliá, ME by Meliá, Meliá Hotels & Resorts, INNSiDE by Meliá, Sol by Meliá and TRYP by Wyndham. The Group is one of the leading companies in resort hotels worldwide, while also leveraging its experience to consolidate the growing segment of the leisure-inspired urban market. Its commitment to responsible tourism has led the Group to become the most sustainable hotel company in Spain and Europe in 2020, according to the SAM Corporate Sustainability Assessment (CSA). It also has ranked seventh in the Wall Street Journal’s list of the 100 most sustainably managed companies in the world (and the leading travel company) and is the only Spanish travel company included in the list of “Europe’s Climate Leaders 2021” by Financial Times. Meliá Hotels International is also included in the IBEX 35 Spanish stock market index and it is the Spanish hotel leader in Corporate Reputation (Merco Ranking).

About Phuket Villa Group
Founded in 1989 in Phuket (Thailand), Phuket Villa Corporation, together with its affiliates, has constructed over 7,000 houses and condominium units all over Phuket and Bangkok. As one of the first developers in Phuket to include a wide range of lifestyle facilities within its developments, such as tennis courts and swimming pools, the Group offers detached homes, townhouses and commercial buildings, catering to the growing local real estate market. In addition, the Group also has two hotels under its banner, offering more than 300 rooms to tourists and business travellers, mirroring Phuket’s steady growth as a premier tourist destination of Thailand. Over the years, Phuket Villa Corporation continues to re-invent itself to cater to an increasingly diverse customer base in a more competitive landscape.

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Metropole Hanoi Introduces New Sustainable Luxury Bath Amenities

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Metropole Hanoi Introduces New Sustainable Luxury Bath Amenities - TRAVELINDEXHanoi, Vietnam, January 19, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi, in keeping with Accor’s global commitment to replace single-use bathroom amenities with eco-friendly alternatives, is introducing a new range of luxury bath products from French fashion house Balmain Paris.

New shower installations in guest rooms feature tamper-proof 400ml bottles of premium Balmain shampoo, conditioner and body wash. The dispensers and pumps are 100% recyclable. Other Balmain products provided to Metropole Hanoi guests include lotion, perfumed bar soap and hand cream. And premium accessories, including shower cap, vanity kit, sanitary bag, shoe shine, dental kit and shaving kit are also offered to in-house guests.

Metropole Hanoi is seeking to bring its distinctive style of “French luxuriousness” to life by partnering with creative, passionate and sophisticated French brands like Balmain Paris that embody a modern sense of art de vivre.

For nearly half a century, Balmain Hair, which is part of the Balmain Paris fashion label, has combined hair essentials with inspiration from the latest catwalk trends. Established in 1954, the quintessentially Parisian House of Balmain has managed to retain its unique position as both a historic French fashion house and as a trendsetting luxury brand that other fashion houses look to as a reference.

At Metropole Hanoi, the new bath amenities meet Accor’s worldwide sustainability goals under its corporate social responsibility initiative launched in 2011 known as Planet 21. In the past year, the hotel has implemented a number of projects focused on serving the local community in Hanoi, saving energy to fight climate change, and eliminating food waste.

Metropole Hanoi is phasing out all single-use plastic items throughout the guest experience. The hotel has attained “Platinum” level in Planet 21, the program’s highest rank. Other recent Planet 21 actions taken by the hotel include introducing eco-friendly towels and bedding, installing an urban vegetable garden, receiving power from a “green” electricity supply, reusing rainwater, offering organic and certified agro-ecology produce, and much more.

For more details on Accor’s Planet 21 initiative, click HERE.

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

New Grecian Escape One&Only Aesthesis to Open in 2022

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New Grecian Escape One&Only Aesthesis to Open in 2022 - TOP25HOTELS.com - TRAVELINDEXAthens, Greece, January 19, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / Discover a paradise of Athenian elegance drenched in nostalgic mid-century glamour. Situated in 21-hectares of exclusive beachfront estate in Southern Athens, One&Only Aesthesis will be the new Grecian escape. Wrapped in ancient mythology in the heart of the Athenian Riviera, where lavender lands meet sapphire waters and our collection of rooms, suites and villas embody the timeless glamour of the Aegean.

Discover Greece and the World’s Best Luxury Hotels with Prestigious Hotel Awards at Top25Hotels.com

Slated to open in late 2022, the One&Only Aesthesis gives travelers the best of both worlds: it’s located a short distance from bustling Athens and iconic sites such as the Acropolis while offering the relaxation and tranquility of a beachfront getaway.

Located on a sprawling coastal area in Southern Athens, just kilometers from the thriving city streets. Discover the natural thermal springs of Lake Vouliagmeni and the endless cove beaches bathed in ancient mythological landmarks. Transcend time in the eye of Greece, and allow your senses to come alive.

One&Only Aesthesis will offer 127 private rooms, breathtaking suites, and private villas designed to frame the enamoring natural beauty of the Grecian coastline. The architecture pays homage to mid-century design with high ceilings, woven leather, muted tones, and accent patterns that embody the inherent beauty of cosmopolitan Riviera.

Drenched in natural beauty, One&Only Aesthesis celebrates the ancient wonders of Athens. Lapped by secret waves, cloaked in flourishing greenery and just moments away from the vibrant metropolis of Athens, feel as if you are in your own private island, in the eye of Greece.

Discover Greece and the World’s Best Luxury Hotels with Prestigious Hotel Awards at Top25Hotels.com

About One&Only
At home in the world’s most inspiring locations, hand-picked for exceptional beauty and unique cultural charm, One&Only Beach Resorts, Nature Resorts, Urban Resorts and Private Homes are havens of outstanding style and service that place you in the heart of every fascinating environment. From incredible, authentic cuisine, to unique tailored excursions, and spectacular spaces to simply be; unforgettable moments begin at One&Only. Hand-picked for exceptional natural beauty and cultural charm, be transported by our collection of exclusive resorts, located in unspoilt, breathtaking destinations across the globe.

First published at TravelCommunication.net

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

UN Secretary-General Calls Private Sector to Help with Post-Pandemic Recovery

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UN Secretary-General Calls Private Sector to Help with Post-Pandemic Recovery - TRAVELINDEXGeneva, Switzerland, January 19, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / In a special address at the virtual World Economic Forum Davos Agenda 2022 on Monday, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres outlined three urgent areas that need to be addressed for the world to emerge from the ongoing global economic and health crisis and to ensure the UN Sustainable Development Goals are achieved.

“Recovery remains fragile and uneven amid the lingering pandemic, persistent labour market challenges, ongoing supply chain disruptions, rising inflation and looming debt traps,” he said. “To chart a new course, we need all hands on deck, especially the global business community.”

The first area that needs immediate attention is confronting the COVID-19 pandemic with equity and fairness. Citing the World Health Organization’s global target to vaccinate 40% of people in all countries by the end of 2021 and 70% by the middle of 2022, Guterres said the world is nowhere near these targets. “If we fail to vaccinate every person, we give rise to new variants that spread across borders and bring daily life and economies to a grinding halt,” he said.

To ensure vaccine equity, he called on countries and manufacturers to prioritize vaccine supply to the global programme COVAX and to support the local production of tests, vaccines and treatments around the world. He also asked pharmaceutical companies to stand in solidarity with developing countries by sharing licences, know-how and technology to find a way out of the pandemic.

The second challenge is the need to reform the global financial system, especially as low-income countries are at a huge disadvantage and are experiencing their slowest growth in a generation. “The burdens of record inflation, shrinking fiscal space, high interest rates and soaring energy and food prices are hitting every corner of the world and blocking recovery, especially in these low- and middle-income countries,” Guterres said. This is stifling any hope of growth by making it even more difficult for governments to invest in the sustainable and resilient systems.

He urged business leaders to help shape a global financial system that works for all countries. This includes working to restructure the long-term debt architecture, addressing corruption and illicit financial flows, ensuring that tax systems are fair and designed in a way that reduce inequalities, and bringing together governments, businesses, the financial sector and international financial institutions to build up private investment in developing countries.

Supporting climate action in developing countries is the third area that needs immediate attention, especially as global emissions are set to increase by 14% by 2030.

“Even if all developed countries kept their promises to drastically reduce emissions by 2030, global emissions would still be too high to keep the 1.5 degree Celsius goal within reach. We need a 45% reduction in global emissions this decade,” Guterres stressed.

Climate shocks, including extreme weather events, forced 30 million people to flee their homes in 2020 alone – three times more than those displaced by war and violence. And 1 billion children are at an extremely high risk of the impacts of climate change. “Turning this ship around will take immense willpower and ingenuity from governments and businesses alike, in every major-emitting nation,” he said. “We see a clear role for businesses and investors in supporting our net-zero goal.”

This, he said, calls for the creation of coalitions of government, public and private financial institutions, investment funds and companies with the technological know-how to provide targeted financial and technical support for every country that needs assistance.

The World Economic Forum’s Climate Action Platform is helping businesses, governments and NGOs accelerate and scale ambition and partnerships needed to drive a sustainable and inclusive future, and its Alliance of CEO Climate Leaders is engaging policy-makers to help deliver the transition to a net-zero economy.

Guterres concluded by saying that many countries need the support, ideas, financing and voice of the global business community.

“If we fail to provide debt relief and financing to developing countries, we create a lopsided recovery that can send an interconnected global economy into a tailspin,” he said. “If we fail to reduce inequalities, we weigh down economic progress for all people in all countries.”

About the Davos Agenda 2022
For over 50 years, the World Economic Forum has been the international organization for public-private cooperation. The Davos Agenda 2022 is the focal point at the start of the year for leaders to share their outlook, insights and plans relating to the most urgent global issues. The meeting will provide a platform to accelerate the partnerships needed to tackle shared challenges and shape a more sustainable and inclusive future.

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

UNWTO: Tourism Grows in 2021, Remains Far Below Pre-Pandemic Levels

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UNWTO: Tourism Grows in 2021, Remains Far Below Pre-Pandemic Levels - TRAVELINDEXMadrid, Spain, January 19, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / Global tourism experienced a 4% upturn in 2021, compared to 2020 (415 million versus 400 million). However, international tourist arrivals (overnight visitors) were still 72% below the pre-pandemic year of 2019, according to preliminary estimates by UNWTO. This follows on from 2020, the worst year on record for tourism, when international arrivals decreased by 73%.

  • UNWTO reports 4% rise in international tourist arrivals in 2021
  • However, 2021 was another challenging year: arrivals still 72% down on pre-pandemic levels
  • Recovery needs stronger coordination and increased vaccination rates

The first 2022 issue of the UNWTO World Tourism Barometer indicates that rising rates of vaccination, combined with easing of travel restrictions due to increased cross-border coordination and protocols, have all helped release pent up demand. International tourism rebounded moderately during the second half of 2021, with international arrivals down 62% in both the third and fourth quarters compared to  pre-pandemic levels. According to limited data, international arrivals in December were 65% below 2019 levels. The full impact of the Omicron variant and surge in COVID-19 cases is yet to be seen.

Slow and uneven recovery

The pace of recovery remains slow and uneven across world regions due to varying degrees of mobility restrictions, vaccination rates and traveler confidence. Europe and the Americas recorded the strongest results in 2021 compared to 2020 (+19% and +17% respectively), but still both 63% below pre-pandemic levels.

By subregion, the Caribbean saw the best performance (+63% above 2020, though 37% below 2019), with some destinations coming close to, or exceeding pre-pandemic levels. Southern Mediterranean Europe (+57%) and Central America (+54%) also enjoyed a significant rebound but remain 54% and 56% down on 2019 levels respectively. North America (+17%) and Central Eastern Europe (+18%) also climbed above 2020 levels.

Meanwhile, Africa saw a 12% increase in arrivals in 2021 compared to 2020, though this is still 74% below 2019. In the Middle East arrivals declined 24% compared to 2020 and 79% over 2019. In Asia and the Pacific arrivals were still 65% below 2020 levels and 94% when compared to pre-pandemic values as many destinations remained closed to non-essential travel.

Increased tourism spending

The economic contribution of tourism in 2021 (measured in tourism direct gross domestic product) is estimated at US$1.9 trillion, above the US$1.6 trillion in 2020, but still well below the pre-pandemic value of US$ 3.5 trillion. Export revenues from international tourism could exceed US$700 billion in 2021, a small improvement over 2020 due to higher spending per trip, but less than half the US$1.7 trillion recorded in 2019.

Average receipts per arrival are estimated to reach US$1,500 in 2021, up from US$1,300 in 2020. This is due to large pent-up savings and longer lengths of stay, as well as higher transport and accommodation prices. France and Belgium reported comparatively smaller declines in tourism expenditure with -37% and -28%, respectively over 2019. Saudi Arabia (-27%) and Qatar (-2%) also posted somewhat better results in 2021.

Outlook for 2022

According to the latest UNWTO Panel of Experts, most tourism professionals (61%) see better prospects for 2022. While 58% expect a rebound in 2022, mostly during the third quarter, an42% vs point to a potential rebound only in 2023. A majority of experts (64%) now expect international arrivals to return to 2019 levels only in 2024 or later, up from 45% in the September survey.

The UNWTO Confidence Index shows a slight decline in January-April 2022. A rapid and more widespread vaccination roll-out, followed by a major lifting of travel restrictions, and more coordination and clearer information on travel protocols, are the main factors identified by experts for the effective recovery of international tourism. UNWTO scenarios indicate that international tourist arrivals could grow by 30% to 78% as compared to 2021, However, this is still 50% to 63% below pre-pandemic levels.

The recent rise in COVID-19 cases and the Omicron variant are set to disrupt the recovery and affect confidence through early 2022 as some countries reintroduce travel bans and restrictions for certain markets. At the same time, the vaccination roll-out remains uneven and many destinations still have their borders completely closed, mostly in Asia and the Pacific. A challenging economic environment could put additional pressure on the effective recovery of international tourism, with the surge in oil prices, increase in inflation, potential rise in interest rates, high debt volumes and the continued disruption in supply chains. However, the ongoing tourism recovery in many markets, mostly in Europe and the Americas, coupled with the widespread vaccination rollout and a major coordinated lifting of travel restrictions, could help to restore consumer confidence and accelerate the recovery of international tourism in 2022.

While international tourism bounces back, domestic tourism continues to drive recovery of the sector in an increasing number of destinations, particularly those with large domestic markets. According to experts, domestic tourism and travel close to home, as well as open-air activities, nature-based products and rural tourism are among the major travel trends that will continue shaping tourism in 2022.

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

PATA to Launch New Net Zero Methodology for Hotels

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PATA to Launch New Net Zero Methodology for Hotels - TRAVELINDEXSingapore, January 18, 2022 / TRAVELINDEX / The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) in partnership with global hospitality, travel and tourism sector organisations released a new methodology to guide hotels on how to set a net zero pathway.

The Net Zero Methodology for Hotels provides detailed guidance on how hotels can approach the technical aspects of net zero, such as what should be included in Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions, milestones to be reached by target years such as 2025, 2030 and 2040, and how to approach decarbonization through renewable energy. The methodology also provides guidance on alignment with frameworks such as the Science Based Targets Initiative, Race to Zero and the Glasgow Declaration.

Graham Harper, PATA Sustainability and Social Responsibility Advisor, said, “We are delighted to have supported the development of this new Net Zero Methodology for Hotels. Although many parts of Asia are still suffering significantly from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, as we gradually reopen it is clear that sustainability is top of the agenda. This methodology will help hotel companies understand the steps they need to take to get on the path to net zero.”

The Methodology is authored by Greenview, a global sustainable hospitality consultancy, in partnership with PATA, Tourism Declares a Climate Emergency, Sustainable Hospitality Alliance and World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC). It was developed through a collaborative process with industry experts, including an Advisory Group of over 20 hotel companies, and after a wide stakeholder consultation.

Eric Ricaurte, Founder and CEO of Greenview said, “As more and more hotel companies make net zero commitments, it is important to document how the specific challenges faced by this sector should be addressed. All too often existing guidance relates to commercial real estate which does not take into account issues such as the particular owner / operator / franchisee relationships in hotels, ongoing changes in portfolio, or the differing status of renewable energy in countries around the world. The methodology provides comprehensive and detailed guidance on all the topics which will need to be addressed by a hotel owner or operator wishing to achieve net zero by 2050.”

“The methodology is not only for those in the hotel sector wishing to set a net zero pathway, but also aims to provide additional insights for the wider climate change and net zero community so that the specific challenges and opportunities faced by hotels can be better understood. Furthermore, as hotel stays are included in Scope 3 Business Travel for companies in all sectors wishing to achieve net zero, this methodology aims to provide a consistent approach to net zero for hotels which will support these ambitions.”

Jeremy Smith, founder of Tourism Declares, added, “We are seeing a great momentum now within the tourism and hospitality sector when it comes to net zero, with many commitments being made by companies large and small. The challenge now is how to realize those commitments and this methodology represents a critical tool in supporting actual progress being made. The challenge is significant, but by following the guidance set out in this methodology hotel companies can start to plot their own pathway, in a way which is aligned with global frameworks and, importantly, in line with climate science.”

Chris Imbsen, Director of Sustainability at WTTC, said, “At the COP 26 meeting in Glasgow in November last year, we launched our Net Zero Roadmap for the Travel & Tourism sector. In it we identified the opportunity for the hotel industry to decarbonize more quickly than some other industries in our sector, such as cruise and aviation, and this methodology provides the details which they can follow in order to achieve this.”

Patrick O’Meara, CEO of the Sustainable Hospitality Alliance, said, “The Net Zero Methodology for Hotels is a significant innovation which will enable hotels to make credible and achievable net zero commitments. The Methodology helps hotels to set boundaries, to measure and report emissions in a consistent way, and to make appropriate use of carbon offsetting in the short to medium term. It will help those hotels who have yet to make significant progress to start immediately on their net zero journey. We are looking forward to reflecting the guidance set out in this methodology in our Pathway to Net Positive Hospitality which will be launched early next year.”

About PATA
Founded in 1951, the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) is a not-for-profit membership association that acts as a catalyst for the responsible development of travel and tourism to, from and within the Asia Pacific region. The Association provides aligned advocacy, insightful research and innovative events to its more than 650 member organisations, including 82 government, state and city tourism bodies, 14 international airlines and airports, 71 hospitality organisations and 75 educational institutions, as well as thousands of young tourism professional (YTP) members across the world. The PATA network also embraces the grassroots activism the PATA Chapters and Student Chapters, who organise numerous travel industry training programmes and business development events across the world. Thousands of travel professionals belong to the 32 local PATA Chapters worldwide, while hundreds of students are members of the 28 PATA Student Chapters globally. The PATAmPOWER platform delivers unrivalled data, forecasts and insights from the PATA Strategic Intelligence Centre to members’ desktops and mobile devices anywhere in the world. PATA’s Head Office has been in Bangkok since 1998. The Association also has official offices or representation in Beijing and London.

About Greenview
Greenview is the world’s leading provider of sustainability programs and data management for the hospitality and tourism sector. We support companies to design, implement, and monitor their corporate responsibility and sustainability platforms to drive profitability, streamline data, keep ahead of trends, and provide effective communication for stakeholders. Headquartered in Singapore, with a global team of experts located in 7 countries, we manage the hospitality sector’s largest collaborative sustainability initiatives, including the Cornell Hotel Sustainability Benchmarking Index, and leverage the power of this network to synergize value to our clients across three pillars of activity: corporate consulting and advisory, Greenview Portal software (GSTC recognized), and collaborative industry initiatives.

First published at TravelCommunication.net

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Around the World in 300 Days: Marriott Bonvoy Is Recruiting Three Travelers to Journey Through Its 30 Extraordinary Brands

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30 Stays, 300 Days
Kike Arnaiz/Kike Arnaiz / Stocksy United

Around the globe, intrepid travelers have been longing for the opportunity to embark on their next great escape and channel their primal need to wander. Today, Marriott Bonvoy – Marriott International’s portfolio of 30 extraordinary hotel brands and highly awarded travel program – is giving the ultimate gift of exploration to three lucky adventurers: an invitation to experience all of its 30 hotel brands, including its curated collection of whole home rentals, and more over the course of 300 days. The price tag is free, but the value is incomparable.

Inspired by Marriott Bonvoy’s belief in the power of travel, winners will experience exceptional stays extending from The Ritz-Carlton and Westin Hotels and Resorts, to Courtyard by Marriott and Autograph Collection Hotels, and more. The winners will also have the chance to take part in money-can’t-buy experiences from the Marriott Bonvoy Moments program, immerse themselves in the locale, and stay in one of the 50,000+ curated premium and luxury home rentals listed on Homes & Villas by Marriott International, the home rental platform launched by Marriott in 2019. Ultimately, winners will experience the breadth of travel programs and services Marriott Bonvoy now offers.

Travel perks for each winner will include:

  • Round trip airfare
  • Exclusive experiential adventures
  • $10,000 Marriott Bonvoy Gift Card to cover items such as on-property meals, spa services, and activities
  • $15,000 check to use as desired
  • “Take Me Away” kit featuring coveted items from the branded online retail stores on Marriott Bonvoy Boutiques
  • Vouchers for transportation from Uber, where Marriott Bonvoy Members can link their accounts to earn Marriott Bonvoy points on select rides and Uber Eats food delivery
  • Progression towards Marriott Bonvoy Elite Status, giving participants the opportunity to unlock exclusive benefits like late check-out, room upgrades, and more, even once their 300 day travel experience is over

Those interested in experiencing this once-in-a-lifetime adventure can submit a TikTok video using the hashtags #30stays300days and #contest from January 18 through March 18, 2022 – ultimately, becoming a Marriott Bonvoy TikTok Correspondent. Marriott Bonvoy invites all adventurers 21 years or older to share why they would be the best candidate for this experience and answer the question, “how has travel shaped you?”– bonus points for creativity. Three individuals will be selected and begin their journey in spring 2022; dates subject to change in accordance with CDC guidelines.

“Our goal with this initiative is to reignite passion for travel in leveraging Marriott Bonvoy’s portfolio in a creative way with a digital-first mindset. Travel is without a doubt one of the strongest tools we have to bring people together, broaden horizons, and foster growth all with an unwavering spirit of curiosity,” said Brian Povinelli, Senior Vice President, Brand, Loyalty & Portfolio Marketing. “We’re excited for our TikTok correspondents to embrace the transformative power of travel and showcase Marriott Bonvoy as the vehicle to explore the world through this once-in-a-lifetime experience.”

As the official Marriott Bonvoy TikTok Correspondents, winners will not only get to experience an all-expenses-paid trip across the globe, but also be ambassadors of travel – documenting the sights, sounds, places, and people they encounter along the way on TikTok and other platforms of their choice. Ideal correspondents should have a passion for exploration, recording their journey in ways that bring locales to life and shows their distinct perception of travel through a digital narrative. The story should be as creative as it is original, producing content that reflects the energy and culture of a place that reinforces just how essential and cathartic travel can be.

Marriott Bonvoy has evolved from a rewards program to an immersive and inclusive travel platform that includes everything from hotel and home rental stays to retail and experiences. The power of travel goes deeper than sightseeing and checking off destinations on one’s bucket list; travel can change views and perceptions, inform, educate, and connect.

For more information about Marriott Bonvoy or to enroll as a member for free, visit here. For more information on how to become a Marriott Bonvoy TikTok correspondent and rules, visit www.30stays300days.com. No purchase nec. 21+, 50 US/DC. Ends 3/18.

About Marriott Bonvoy®
Marriott Bonvoy’s extraordinary portfolio offers renowned hospitality in the most memorable destinations in the world, with 30 brands that are tailored to every type of journey. Members can earn points for stays at hotels and resorts, including all-inclusive resorts and premium home rentals, and through everyday purchases with co-branded credit cards. Members can redeem their points for experiences including future stays, Marriott Bonvoy Moments, or through partners for luxurious products from Marriott Bonvoy Boutiques. To enroll for free or for more information about Marriott Bonvoy, visit marriottbonvoy.com.

Media Contact
Shannon Bodo
Marriott International
Shannon.Bodo@marriott.com

Read original article at Marriott Hotels

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE IN TONGA: Communications difficult as internet and phone lines severed

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New Zealand and Australia were able to send military surveillance flights to Tonga on Monday to assess the damage caused by a huge undersea volcanic eruption on Saturday. A towering ash cloud had prevented earlier flights and communication in the Pacific Island nation is still severely limited.

New Zealand hopes to send essential supplies, including much-needed drinking water, on a military transport plane today (Tuesday).

U.N. humanitarian officials and Tonga’s government “report significant infrastructural damage around Tongatapu,” the main island in the archipelago, U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.

“There has been no contact from the Ha’apai Group of islands, and we are particularly concerned about two small low-lying islands – Mango and Fonoi – following surveillance flights confirming substantial property damage,” Dujarric said.

The company that owns the single underwater fiber-optic cable that connects the island nation to the rest of the world said it likely was severed in the eruption and repairs could take weeks.

The loss of the cable leaves most Tongans unable to use the internet or make phone calls abroad. Those that have managed to get messages out described their country as looking like a moonscape as they began cleaning up from the tsunami waves and volcanic ash fall.

Tsunami waves of about 80 cm. crashed into Tonga’s shoreline, and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern described damage to boats and shops on Tonga’s shoreline. The waves crossed the Pacific, drowning two people in Peru and causing minor damage from New Zealand to Santa Cruz, California.

Scientists said they didn’t think the eruption would have a significant impact on the Earth’s climate. Huge volcanic eruptions can sometimes cause temporary global cooling as sulfur dioxide is pumped into the stratosphere. But in the case of the Tonga eruption, initial satellite measurements indicated the amount of sulfur dioxide released would only have a tiny effect of perhaps 0.01 Celsius global average cooling, said Alan Robock, a professor at Rutgers University.

Satellite image

Satellite images showed the spectacular eruption undersea Saturday evening, with a plume of ash, steam and gas rising like a giant mushroom above the South Pacific waters.

A sonic boom could be heard as far away as Alaska and sent pressure shockwaves around the planet twice, altering atmospheric pressure that may have briefly helped clear out the fog in Seattle, according to the National Weather Service. Large waves were detected as far away as the Caribbean due to pressure changes generated by the eruption.

Samiuela Fonua, who chairs the board at Tonga Cable Ltd. which owns the single cable that connects Tonga to the outside world via Fiji, said the cable appeared to have been severed about 10 to 15 minutes after the eruption. He said the cable lies atop and within coral reef, which can be sharp.

Fonua said a ship would need to pull up the cable to assess the damage and then crews would need to fix it. A single break might take a week to repair, he said, while multiple breaks could take up to three weeks. He added that it was unclear yet when it would be safe for a ship to venture near the undersea volcano to undertake the work.

A second undersea cable that connects the islands within Tonga also appeared to have been severed, Fonua said. However, a local phone network was working, allowing Tongans to call each other. But he said the lingering ash cloud was continuing to make even satellite phone calls abroad difficult.

Fonua said Tonga, home to 105,000 people, had been in discussions with New Zealand about getting a second international fiber-optic cable to ensure a more robust network but the nation’s isolated location made any long-term solution difficult.

Ardern said the capital, Nuku’alofa, was covered in a thick film of volcanic dust, contaminating water supplies and making fresh water a vital need.

Aid agencies said thick ash and smoke had prompted authorities to ask people to wear masks and drink bottled water.

One complicating factor to any international aid effort is that Tonga has so far managed to avoid any outbreaks of COVID-19. Ardern said New Zealand’s military staff were all fully vaccinated and willing to follow any protocols established by Tonga.

Dave Snider, the tsunami warning coordinator for the National Tsunami Warning Center in Palmer, Alaska, said it was very unusual for a volcanic eruption to affect an entire ocean basin, and the spectacle was both “humbling and scary.”

The U.S. Geological Survey estimated the eruption caused the equivalent of a magnitude 5.8 earthquake. Scientists said tsunamis generated by volcanoes rather than earthquakes are relatively rare.

Rachel Afeaki-Taumoepeau, who chairs the New Zealand Tonga Business Council, said she hoped the relatively low level of the tsunami waves would have allowed most people to get to safety, although she worried about those living on islands closest to the volcano.

“We are praying that the damage is just to infrastructure and people were able to get to higher land,” she said.

The explosion of the Hunga Tonga Hunga Ha’apai volcano, about 64 km. north of Nuku’alofa, was the latest in a series of dramatic eruptions. In late 2014 and early 2015, eruptions created a small new island and disrupted international air travel to the Pacific archipelago for several days.

Earth imaging company Planet Labs PBC had watched the island in recent days after a new volcanic vent began erupting in late December. Satellite images showed how drastically the volcano had shaped the area, creating a growing island off Tonga.

 

First published at Travel Industry Today

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

ROUND-UP:Jan. 10-14, 2021

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Remember when “wave season” meant cruising? It’s that time of year. Also in last week’s news: Lynx Air announce tickets are on sale, with a contest to celebrate; Transat enhanced check-in procedures; TICO deferred payments (again); the US conditional sailing order expired; and winter fun is cancelled.

NEWS

The Travel Industry Council of Ontario (TICO) advises that new provincial funding will enable it to waive registrant fees for a third year as the travel industry continues to grapple with the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Travel agencies and wholesalers will receive a fee waiver for annual registration renewal fees and Travel Industry Compensation Fund payments (Form-1) owed to TICO from April 1, 2022, to March 31, 2023. The waiver applies to all registrants registered with TICO as of March 31, 2022.

Tourism operators in British Columbia can apply for financial help from a $15-million relief fund to cover some of their losses due to COVID-19. The provincial government says BC-owned hotels or motels that employ more than 150 people, Indigenous-owned resorts on reserves with over 100 employees, and tourism operators who hold tenure or BC Parks permits can all apply for grants. The fund was suggested by a task force established in September 2020 to look at ways of helping tourism operators during the economic downturn caused by the pandemic.

Effective Feb. 15 all visitors to Belize are required to apply for Belize Travel Health Insurance – a mandatory insurance that helps protect travellers against incurred medical and non-medical expenses if they test positive for COVID-19 during their stay in Belize. Cost of the policy is US$18 with coverage for up to US$50,000 in medical (including emergency assistance), accommodation, and trip cancellation expenses related to treatment of COVID-19 for a period of 21 days. Arrivals continue to be required to present a negative test.

The European Union ended travel restrictions on flights from southern Africa on Jan. 11, well over a month after imposing them to in hopes of containing the spread of the omicron variant of the coronavirus.

DELAYED/ CANCELLED

Due to public health measures, in-person Winterlude activities at the Snowflake Kingdom and elsewhere in Ottawa will not take place this year. Canadians across the country, however, are being invited to vote online in the 44th annual event’s National Ice-Carving Championship. Also cancelled is the BeaverTails Ottawa Ice Dragon Boat Festival, which was take place as part of Winterlude from Feb. 4 to 21.

With less than 48 days to go, the 2022 Ontario Winter Games were postponed until 2023 due to surging Omicron cases in the province, the uncertainty of some events taking place and the possibility of others being cancelled due to COVID exposures. The games were slated to be a positive economic influx into the tourism sector of Renfrew County, which has been hard-hit by the pandemic. And on Saturday, it was announced that the BC Winter Games next month in Vernon would also be cancelled due to the rise of COVID-19 cases in the province.

Large-scale events, such as Lunar New Year fairs, have been banned in Hong Kong as the city tries to keep a lid on the omicron outbreak. Transit passengers from 150 countries and territories were also banned effective yesterday (Jan. 16). Early this month, Hong Kong imposed a two-week ban on incoming flights from several countries, including Canada. Other restrictions have been posed as part of the Chinese city’s “zero tolerance” COVID-19 policy.

RE-OPENING/RE-START
A section of the historic Old Seven Mile Bridge, paralleling the Florida Keys Overseas Highway, reopened Wednesday (photo) in the Middle Keys so residents and visitors can once again use it for cycling, walking, running, rollerblading, watching sunrises and sunsets and to access Pigeon Key. The oft-photographed 3.5-km span of bridge near Marathon was part of a US$44-million renovation that began in 2017.

Continuing its restart, Carnival Cruise Line resumed guest operations Friday from Charleston, S.C., with Carnival Sunshine. The ship departed today on a four-day cruise to Nassau, Bahamas.

The daily, public ferry service between Anguilla’s Blowing Point Ferry Terminal and the Marigot Ferry Terminal on the French side of St. Martin has recommenced.

AIR

Tickets for Lynx Air flights go on sale on Wednesday (Jan. 19) and to celebrate the Canadian low-cost carrier (formerly Enerjet) has launched a trivia contest starting today (Monday) offering Canadians a chance to win free flights for a year. Two grand prize winners will win one round-trip flight per month to any Lynx destination for 12 months and five additional winners will each receive one round-trip flight anywhere on Lynx’s network. The contest closes Jan 18 at 8 p.m. MT. For details and to enter, click https://www.flylynx.com

Air Transat customers can now upload and validate their destination health documents when checking in online. This will allow them to obtain their digital boarding pass before arriving at the airport and ensure they meet entry requirements. The tool, which uses a technology developed by Amadeus, is currently in a test phase and will be deployed in three phases. Initially it will only validate the COVID-19 test and will be available for a selection of routes. In the coming months, it will be extended to the entire Air Transat network and will also validate proof of vaccination for destinations that require it.

KLM reports that it will start adding 0.5% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) for flights departing from Amsterdam and will additionally give customers the option of purchasing an extra amount of sustainable fuel. In this manner it aims to stimulate the market for SAF. “The face of travel is set to change in the future and SAF will play an essential role in this regard,” says the Dutch carrier.

RAIL

Given the impact on travel demand of tighter COVID-19 restrictions due to the rapid spreading of the omicron variant, VIA Rail will temporarily reduce frequencies in the Québec City-Windsor corridor starting Wednesday (Jan. 9).

Clients booking an eligible Canadian trip this month (through Jan. 31) on Rocky Mountaineer will receive a complimentary upgrade from SilverLeaf to Goldleaf service ($1,500 value). Bookings are also risk free with a full travel credit for use to the end of the 2023 season granted to any travellers who cancel within 60 days of their trip for any reason. GoldLeaf Service includes bi-level glass-dome coaches equipped with spacious seats and unobstructed views; exclusive outdoor viewing platform; and gourmet breakfast and lunch.

DEALS

Through Feb. 6 Bermuda’s “Pink Sale” is offering up to 50% off on hotel bookings in the destination, with rates starting at $100/night and travel available through December. Participating properties and information can be found HERE 

Costa Cruises North America has savings of up to US$800 on select 2022 itineraries as part of Wave Season. The offer, available on bookings made by Feb. 28, applies to select Mediterranean and northern Europe itineraries in 2022. As an added bonus, guests also receive a $100 p.p. onboard credit, totalling $200 in onboard credit per cabin. Wave Sale deals are available on cruises departing from April through November. Restrictions and blackout dates apply.

HOTELS

Atlific Hotels has added four British Columbia hotels to its management portfolio, including two in Fort St. John – the Travelodge by Wyndham Fort St. John and Ramada by Wyndham Northern Grand Hotel & Conference Centre – plus two in Richmond, the Holiday Inn Vancouver Airport and Holiday Inn Express Vancouver Airport. The latter recently completed a top to bottom renovation and offers 161 guestrooms with free fiber optic high-speed WiFi, fridge and microwave, fitness centre, 24-hour airport shuttle, gated parking with electric charging and onsite restaurant. The Holiday Inn Express Vancouver Airport also recently renovated and features 107 guestrooms with a variety of in-room conveniences, fitness centre, 24-hour airport shuttle, and free breakfast.

Housed in the historic Tontine Building that originated as the city’s first Stock Exchange in 1729, the sleek, residentially inspired Wall Street Hotel will boast 180 spacious rooms and suites, a fine dining restaurant featuring a Michelin star chef, plus a stylish rooftop bar and lounge with outdoor terrace when it opens in March. The Preferred Hotels member is located at 88 Wall St. in lower Manhattan and in the heart of the global financial district, steps from Battery Park, the World Trade Center, and the Brooklyn Bridge.

RESORTS

Clients can save 45% off the price of all-inclusive spring and summer escapes at top Club Med resorts throughout Mexico, Florida, the Caribbean, and Canada. The “Your Vacation Your Way” sale is open for bookings through Feb. 23 for travel through Aug. 26. Additional perks include a free room upgrade and free stays for kids under four. Participating resorts include Punta Cana, Cancun, Miches Playa Esmeralda, Quebec, Ixtapa, Turks and Caicos, Sandpiper Bay, Caravelle, and Buccanneer’s Creek.

Due to open April 1, Dreams Karibana Cartagena Beach & Golf Resort will be the first AMR Collection resort in South America. The Colombian all-inclusive will feature 268 rooms, all with a private terrace, balcony, or swim-out suites. Other amenities include five bars and lounges with unlimited international and domestic top-shelf spirits; three gourmet à la carte dining choices; pool and beach service; 24-hour room and concierge services; daily activities and entertainment; access to a private beach club; 18-hole golf course; and more.

CRUISE

The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says it will let its controversial conditional sailing order mandating various COVID-19 protocols aboard cruise ships sailing in US waters expire as initially intended on Jan. 15. Health and safety measures applied by individual cruise lines will then become voluntary.

Delayed a full year by the pandemic, Avalon Waterways new vessel, the Avalon View, will now debut in April in Bratislava, Slovakia. The ship will be christened by on April 12 by godmother Meredith Vieira, a 15-time Emmy Award-winning TV broadcaster. After the ceremony, the 166-passenger View will join Avalon’s Suite Ship fleet to sail the Danube River in 2022.

Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) has unveiled the next ship in its new Prima Class category. Norwegian Viva will begin sailing Mediterranean itineraries in June 2023, homeporting in key southern European port cities Lisbon, Venice, Rome, and Athens, before sailing to the Southern Caribbean for her 2023-24 winter season (from San Juan)

ATTRACTIONS & THEME PARKS

SeaWorld Orlando says that its anticipated Ice Breaker roller coaster will make its debut on Feb. 18. The roller coaster ride has four airtime launches, as well as a 28-m.- tall spike with 100-degree angle. Although the ride doesn’t officially open until the middle of next month, those with season passes will get sneak peaks earlier.

FAMS & INCENTIVES

G-Normous, G Adventures’ biggest annual agent incentive offers $75K worth of cash and prizes to agents in Canada through April 30. The 9th annual “thank you” promotion also invites agents to compete in fun community challenges, and to vie for the $5K grand prize for the overall G-Normous top seller in Canada. In addition to the cash prizes, agents also receive one entry to win a fantastic trip each month – drawn at random – with each booking made. Agents with a G Adventures Sherpa account are automatically registered. Agents without an account can sign-up through their agency manager at https://www.gadventures.com/agents/register

EVENTS

Registration for ‘MeetGB Virtual’ 2022, VisitBritain’s free flagship business event is still open. Taking place in Feb. 15-17, the online tradeshow for Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions/Events (MICE) is held in partnership with MeetEngland, Business Events Scotland, Meet In Wales, Tourism Northern Ireland, and London Convention Bureau, inviting international buyers to connect online in real time with UK destinations, venues, and suppliers. For more info and registration: https://www.visitbritain.com/gb/en/business

PEOPLE/APPOINTMENTS

Two familiar faces are back with the AMR Collection in Canada. Scott Reid returns as BDM Central Canada, covering Western Ontario, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan; and after a short stint away Brian Joseph returns as BDM for the Toronto, Greater Toronto Area, Eastern Ontario, and the Niagara regions. They join Orelbys Vigoa (Quebec and Atlantic Canada) and Carlo Trinidad (Western Canada).

AGENTS

An annual customer contest conducted by The Travel Agent Next Door (TTAND) attracted 42,000 online entries. Designed to help build data bases and enhance social media presence, the contest offered a seven-day Caribbean cruise for two from Fort Lauderdale on Celebrity Cruises in a Verandah stateroom, with complimentary air from all major Canadian gateways. Winner of the contest was Paul Vendetti of Ontario, a client of TTAND agent Jennifer Jones (photo).

The American Marketing Group (AMG), parent company of TRAVELSAVERS, NEST and The Affluent Travel Collection, has introduced an enhanced digital platform that delivers social media content for all affiliate agencies in the US and Canada. The platform, called Social Connect, helps advisors engage their current clients and reach new clients to build their brand awareness and increase sales.

BY THE NUMBERS

Nevada casinos set a record in November, reporting a ninth straight month of US$1 billion or more in house winnings, providing another sign that business in the nation’s tourist-dependent gambling mecca has returned to pre-pandemic levels. The $1.32 billion in casino winnings reported statewide was up from $1.22 billion in October, and almost reached the record $1.36 billion figure set last July, the Nevada Gaming Control Board reported. The streak beat the previous record of eight consecutive months set before the Great Recession, from October 2006 to May 2007. Nevada sports betting also set records – reaping a record $72 million in November on sports wagers totaling $1.1 billion.

DESTINATIONS

Cuba has eliminated the need for visitors who test positive to stay in “hotel-hospitals,” instead permitting travellers to isolate in their hotel. The new measures replace previous requirements for passengers who test positive for COVID-19 to quarantine at the government designated facilities. Now, passengers can stay at their hotel in select rooms that are separated from the rest of the hotel in a different block or section and overseen by medical personnel.

From Feb 17 to July 17 the British Museum in London, in partnership with Wiltshire Museum and English Heritage, will host The World of Stonehenge, the UK’s first ever major exhibition on the history and mystery of the ancient site. There will be hundreds of objects brought together from across Britain and Europe including stone axes from the North Italian Alps, stunning metalwork from Ireland, and an extremely rare 3,000-year-old sun pendant, described by the British Museum as the most significant piece of Bronze Age gold ever found in Britain.

Send info to baginski@travelindustrytoday.com

First published at Travel Industry Today

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News