Παρασκευή, 23 Φεβρουαρίου 2018

Common Principles Urged to Help Aviation Continue to Deliver its Benefits

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New York City - The International Air Transport Association (IATA) urged the US government and industry stakeholders to agree upon a set of common principles in order to enable aviation to continue to increase the level of benefits it delivers in the US and around the globe.
Speaking at Aviation Day USA organized by IATA and the Wings Club, Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO said, "Aviation is the business of freedom. It liberates us from the constraints of geography, distance and time, enabling us to lead better lives, and it makes the world a better place. To ensure that the business of freedom continues to grow the benefits it generates, we must be guided by five core principles:
  • First, we must be safe, and we must always strive to be even safer
  • Second, aviation thrives on partnership and cooperation, supported by global standards
  • Third, governments must avoid creating barriers to market innovation
  • Fourth, aviation must be supported by infrastructure that is efficient and affordable
  • Lastly, aviation must be sustainable, both environmentally and economically."
De Juniac focused on infrastructure and market innovation with specific references to continuing developments in the US.
Infrastructure development is not keeping pace with growth in demand for flights. IATA forecasts that 7.8 billion passengers will travel globally in 2036. That is nearly double the 4.1 billion who flew in 2017. "To meet that demand we need sufficient capacity in terms of runways, terminals and airspace. Quality must be aligned with our technical and commercial needs. And it all must be affordable. I believe, however, that we are headed for an infrastructure crisis--and that includes in the US-- where we expect passenger numbers to rise 57% over the next 20 years to 1.1 billion, but the last all new major airport opened more than 20 years ago," said de Juniac.
IATA also reiterated its broader concerns on governments looking to fund airport infrastructure development through privatization.
"We have yet to see an airport privatization that has, in the long-term, delivered on the promised benefits of greater efficiency for airlines and a better experience for our customers. To date there has been no regulatory formula that effectively balances the interest of private owners to earn a profit with the public interest to have the airport serve as an engine of economic growth. By all means, invite private sector expertise to bring commercial discipline and a customer service focus to airport management, but leave ownership in public hands," said de Juniac.
To meet the air navigation service requirements of a growing industry with technology that will improve efficiency and environmental performance, IATA lent its support to the corporatization of air traffic management in the US. "US air traffic controllers do an excellent job. But the US air traffic management system is falling behind in the introduction of new and more efficient technology. That is why IATA supports the long-delayed transformation and modernization of America’s air traffic management system by placing it in an independent not-for-profit structure outside of government," said de Juniac.
The diversion of federal fees and taxes intended for aviation-related infrastructure spending is also a cause for concern. "About 21% of the average domestic ticket cost is taxes and charges. And instead of funding much needed aviation investments, too much of this money is being spent elsewhere. If the latest House of Representatives budget proposal is passed, we will see increased charges for security and customs services. But much of that will be diverted to general spending. It’s bad enough being taxed like a sin. It is unbearable to have those taxes spent elsewhere," said de Juniac.
Market Innovation
IATA encouraged further rationalization of the regulatory environment to remove barriers to innovation. "Aviation is being challenged by the digital revolution and constant innovation is critical to survival. Often, however, governments create regulatory barriers to innovation. For example, the success of the so-called ultra-low cost carriers makes it clear there is a huge appetite for an absolutely basic travel experience. Yet in parts of the globe, regulators try to limit airlines’ ability to meet this demand by imposing some service levels—like requiring inclusive or flexible fares," said de Juniac.
Specifically focusing on the US, IATA supported the US Department of Transportation’s (DOT) ongoing review of regulatory over-reach. "Under the Obama Administration, DOT retreated from some of the principles of free and open market competition in favor of a more heavy-handed approach to regulation. We welcome the initiative by DOT under the Trump Administration to review regulations where there is an unnecessary and unwarranted intrusion into a deregulated industry, and when costs to industry cannot be justified by the level of benefits provided to passengers," said de Junaic.

Assessment and rating index system for health tourism destinations in the offing

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The Global Healthcare Travel Council will expand and build an assessment and rating index system followed by recognizing award health tourism destinations, as mentioned by an official recently.
Dr Laila Al Marzouqi, director of Medical Tourism Council and president of the Global Healthcare Travel Council, explained that the assessment and rating index system will entirely be developed in aid with a working group headed by herself as the president of the council.

She stated that the award would be managed by the council. Every year, the awards will be handed out, starting in 2019 at the time of the Dubai International Health Tourism Forum.

On the last day of the forum on Wednesday, she disclosed simultaneously that the Health Bank in collaboration with Dubai Health Experience (DXH) introduced DXH SmartCare to offer health tourists with single point of contact to receive flawless health care coordination, second medical opinion along with flight bookings, visas, accommodation, airport transfers, leisure activities and post-treatment support.

DXH SmartCare can be availed on www.dxh.ae, provides three tiers of membership, Blue being the vital package provides research and referrals in terms of treatment options for Dh1,100; Silver, at a cost of Dh2,599, and the Gold membership, at a cost of 5,455 respectively. Both offer journey planning services with dedicated account manager, concierge and comprehensive care coordination respectively.

The Global Healthcare Travel Council or the GHTC is a forum of national councils related to the health care travel industry. It comprised senior executives of the leading health care travel councils and associations of the world. They have an exclusive mandate and overview on matters related to health care travel.

Eden Roc Miami Beach unveils $250m. transformation and new brand experience

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MIAMI BEACH, FLA. - Eden Roc Miami Beach, the iconic Miami Beach hotel, is newly transformed after $250 million in renovations and the creation of a reenergized brand experience that provides avid business and leisure travelers alike, and discerning locals, with a fundamentally inclusive hotel experience defined by a vibrant atmosphere, international perspective and a fresh take on luxury. The 415-room refurbished property is bringing the Beach Cosmopolitan lifestyle to guests from around the world by combining the enigmatic spirit of Miami with a beachside attitude that offers an immersive escape.
"As the city of Miami Beach continues to flourish, we look forward to bringing a more distinctive and clearly defined experience to our guests and locals," said Andrea Chapur, ownership, Eden Roc Miami Beach. "Not only has the hotel itself undergone a massive refurbishment, but we have infused every part of the local Miami experience to create a fun and welcoming atmosphere and showcase the one-of-a-kind persona that defines Eden Roc Miami Beach."
Signs of the landmark's $250 million makeover are evident throughout the property - from the complimentary welcome drinks to the utilization of a new in-room pathfinders guide, a program dedicated to bringing the most up-to-date and insider knowledge of the Miami epicurean, activity and nightlife scene. Additional updates elevating the experience include the reimagination of Morris Lapidus' famous 16-seat lobby bar by interior designer David Rockwell, the introduction of the signature Nobu restaurant and the flagship Nobu Hotel tower (boasting a hotel-within-a-hotel concept), soon-to-open Malibu Farm restaurant, and inclusion of Boho Hunter - an upscale boutique featuring contemporary women's fashion & accessories from Latin American designers.
With some of the most breathtaking ocean views and oversized balconies, a refreshing renovation to all 415 spacious guest rooms and suites creates a calm seaside atmosphere, including a number of new amenities, tailored to cater to Eden Roc's celebrated guests:
  • Sweeping, sand-like carpet and palm inspired wall coverings that invoke the tropical spirit of the city; natural wood toned furnishings and a soft color palette create a coastal ambiance while red and brass accents add an element of Miami glamour; and teak wood and an illuminated round mirror in the bathroom emulate a retro-classic vibe, paying tribute to the property's history
  • A pathfinder guide in every room, offering a 24-hour locals guide to Miami
  • Boutique shower amenities from Maison Margiela's Replica collection, with Eden Roc being the only hotel to feature its formula, entitled "Beach Walk"
  • 55' flat screen TV and JBL Bluetooth speakers for in-room entertainment
  • Nespresso machine in every room
  • Sunbeam Steamers, and CHI hair dryers and flat irons in each room
  • Curated in-room art from Saatchi Art, the world's leading online art gallery featuring a selection of works inspired by Miami's rich art deco history and sophisticated beach aesthetic
  • Hooded jersey robes and beach flip flops, replacing the traditional bathrobes and hotel slippers
For those looking to unwind and escape during their stay at Eden Roc, the previous "Spa Eden Roc," will be reinvented as Esencia Wellness. The reinvigorated facility includes the 22,000 sq. ft. Esencia Spa featuring 18 treatment cabins, a spa relaxation room and Eden Roc signature treatments such as the "Rocks, Not Diamonds" volcanic massage, "Mommy-2-be" prenatal treatments and the "Keep Calm" aromatherapy massage. The Esencia Fitness Center, showcases 3,000 sq. ft. of state-of-the-art Technogym fitness machines and a studio offering fitness classes from Miami's best instructors while Esencia Beauty, a boutique hair and nail salon, will provide a truly personalized pampering experience, ensuring each guest is prepped for their vacation in style.
Beyond the personal experience offered in each guest room, a number of hotel offerings have also been added. Epicurean innovation inspired by the flavors of the budding Miami food scene have inspired ERC BITES, a revitalized in-room dining and pool menu, hand-selected by Eden Roc Miami Beach and Nobu Executive Chef, Thomas Buckley. Local farmers and restaurants such as Miami Smokers, Zak The Baker, Florida Beer Company and Collins Fish and Seafood help to create a menu that evokes the true taste of Miami.
Enhanced poolside experiences such as DJs and entertainment, locally inspired mixology, vibrant floaties and poolside coolers allow guests to relax and soak up the Miami sunshine in style. A brand new outdoor beach bar concept, Gitano, will offer a mezcal-focused cocktail menu featuring mojitos infused with fresh-pressed cane juice, an airstream serving Mexican cantina-style bites and outdoor activities such as corn hole, foosball, pool floaties and ping pong, embodying the carefree swagger of Miami Beach, set to open in spring 2018.

Carnival Updates Cruisers On San Juan

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For a while now, cruise lines have — in conjunction with the islands impacted by last year’s hurricanes — been working hard to let potential visitors know that the Caribbean is back in business. But of course, both the cruise lines and the islands have a literal investment in their ability to convince tourists to come back. The various businesses located on the islands need an influx of money in order to get things back to normal, and the cruise lines want to see that happen as soon as possible, given that the impacted ports are as popular as they are profitable.
One of the hardest-hit ports was San Juan, and those paying attention to the news know that much of Puerto Rico still has a long way to go in the recovery process. With that in mind, we asked Terry Thornton, senior vice president of port operations, how San Juan’s recovery is going… and he was brutally honest in his responses.

Is San Juan Ready For Tourists?

Αποτέλεσμα εικόνας για Carnival Updates Cruisers On San Juan

“It’s one thing for cruise lines to talk about everything being fine,” he said during a recent interview  “Don’t trust [naysayers], it’s all good. It’s another thing for me to tell you about how our guests are actually rating their experiences in San Juan when they visit. Because after a cruise, we send a survey to all guests” for feedback about the cruise in general and the specific ports visited.
“What I can tell you about San Juan,” Thornton continues, “is that the ratings we’re receiving [from guests now] are higher than we were receiving prior to the storm.”
The exec says that this is “a great testament to all the people working so hard in San Juan to make it a good experience for our guests. We’re very, very excited about that.” He adds that Carnival is seeing similar results in St. Thomas and St Martin, and that’s why they want to get the word out.
“It’s very easy for the cruise line to say everything’s fine,” he concludes. “It’s another thing for our guests to be telling people that it’s fine, and telling their friends and relatives what a great experience they had!”

Palm Court at Four Seasons Hotel Jakarta Presents Authentic Thai Cuisine from KOH Thai Kitchen

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Palm Court is embracing Asian food culture with new offerings served in a modern, sophisticated and innovative culinary style. Starting March 8, 2018, for four days, the team from KOH Thai Kitchen & Bar at Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui, Thailand joins forces with the team at Four Seasons Hotel Jakarta to present the most authentic flavours from the island with special buffet highlights including a range of classics and authentic Southern Thai fare over lunch and dinner.
Αποτέλεσμα εικόνας για Palm Court at Four Seasons Hotel Jakarta Presents Authentic Thai Cuisine from KOH Thai Kitchen 
Led by Sainoi Prommas (nicknamed Chef Noi), Chef de Partie at Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui, the dishes presented during this promotion will give discerning diners of Jakarta a true flavour of Southern Thailand’s culinary landscape. “We focus on delivering the food in its original style – like I would eat at home,” says Chef Noi, adding, “Guests can enjoy the original taste of our own recipes for sauces and stocks, created by the team at KOH Thai Kitchen. The same recipes are being used since the Resort opened over a decade ago.”

Discover authentic Thai dishes such as spicy prawn soup, slow-cooked beef curry, and the classic favourite, green papaya salad. The impressive buffet spread also includes an array of salads, fresh seafood and desserts.

Port of Tampa Breaks Weekend Cruise Record

Port Tampa Bay saw a record number of cruise ship passengers during two recent weekends. 19,876 guests arrived and departed ships the weekend of February 3 and 4, breaking the previous record. Then last weekend, February 17 and 18, there was a total of 22,960 passengers, breaking the record again.
The previous record for cruise passengers was 12,600 on a Saturday in 2011. That number was surpassed on February 3 with 12,949 people passing through. On Saturday February 17, there were 13,792 travelers.
That being said, there were fewer passengers and ships in the first quarter of fiscal year 2018 than last year’s first quarter. Even so, the port expects to make those numbers up as the cruise season continues and larger ships arrive to transport more guests.
Royal Caribbean will soon be moving a larger vessel to Tampa that will accommodate more than 500 additional passengers this summer. Last summer the line sailed Empress of the Seas from Tampa to Cuba, which carries 1,602 guests. This coming summer, Majesty of the Seas, carrying 2,350 guests, will homeport in Tampa Bay.
Majesty of the Seas – photo: Royal Caribbean
Last month, Carnival Miracle arrived in Tampa to be Carnival’s second year-round ship there. The 2,124-guest vessel joined Carnival’s other Tampa-based ship, the 2,052-guest Carnival Paradise. Together they will carry 280,000 passengers from Tampa each year; a tenfold increase from when the line launched service from Tampa in 1994.
Add in Holland America’s Tampa-based Rotterdam and the number swells to 320,000 guests each year. The port has three terminals capable of handling larger ships with the $1.7 million renovation of Terminal 6, used by Royal Caribbean.

Carnival Paradise Undergoing Massive, Month-Long Renovation That Will Add New Water Park, New Cabins, Balconies to Existing Staterooms and Exciting Food and Beverage Innovations

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MIAMI (February 2018) – Carnival Paradise is undergoing an extensive, multi-million-dollar refurbishment that will add a wide variety of spaces and innovations, including a spectacular water park, 38 new cabins, 98 balconies to existing staterooms, and an a host of exciting food and beverage concepts.
Following the month-long dry dock, which takes place in Freeport, The Bahamas, Carnival Paradise will resume its year-round schedule of four- to eight-day cruises from Tampa, Fla., March 26, 2018. 
The new features include:
·       Guy’s Burger Joint: a free-of-charge poolside venue developed in partnership with Food Network personality Guy Fieri serving hand-crafted burgers and fresh-cut fries enjoyed amidst a décor that celebrates the chef’s California roots and love of car culture.
·       RedFrog Rum Bar: a poolside watering hole offering the quintessential Caribbean vacation vibe with refreshing Caribbean rum-based frozen drinks and beers, including Carnival’s own private label draught brew, ThirstyFrog Red. 
·       BlueIguana Cantina: a complimentary poolside Mexican eatery where guests can enjoy authentic freshly made burritos and tacos on homemade tortillas, as well as an elaborate toppings and salsa bar.
·       BlueIguana Tequila Bar:  a fun and festive outdoor bar offering a laid-back Mexican-themed atmosphere and tequila-based frozen drinks and beers, perfect for chillin’ by the pool.
·       Camp Ocean: a colorful marine-inspired play area designed for kids ages 2-11 that showcases the wonders of the sea through fun and engaging interiors and more than 200 ocean-themed activities, including arts and crafts, science-oriented  programming, and more.
·       New Cabins, Stateroom Enhancements: Thirty-eight cabins have been added – two Grand Vista suites offering floor-to-ceiling windows, 22 junior suites, two scenic ocean view cabins and 12 interior accommodations.  Additionally, private verandahs have been added to 98 existing staterooms, creating spacious new 230-square-foot balcony staterooms. All staterooms will offer new island-inspired interiors with bright colors and soothing pastels inspired by Carnival Paradise’s tropical itineraries.
·       WaterWorks Aqua Park: Located on Verandah Deck, this expansive all-ages water park features an enclosed 300-foot-long Twister water slide full of exhilarating twists and turns, two 82-foot-long racing slides, and a splash zone for kids. 
·       Miniature Golf Course: A nine-hole miniature golf course has been relocated to Deck 14, providing a fun and relaxing pastime for families to enjoy in the fresh sea air.
·       Retail and Photo Enhancements:  The ship’s retail shops are being completely reimagined with a new design and enhanced product offerings with multiple brand boutiques, including Pandora and Guess.  A guest favorite, the Cherry on Top sweets shop, is also being added, while the printed photo gallery is being replaced with a digital Pixels-branded platform that allows guests to identify and purchase images via their smartphones or at a nearby kiosk.
 Αποτέλεσμα εικόνας για Carnival Paradise Undergoing Massive, Month-Long Renovation That Will Add New Water Park, New Cabins, Balconies to Existing Staterooms and Exciting Food and Beverage Innovations

Carnival Paradise’s Tampa-based schedule includes four-day cruises to Cozumel and five-day cruises to Cozumel or Mahogany Bay (Roatan), Grand Cayman or Key West.   The ship also sails to Cuba with four-day cruises visiting Havana, five-day cruises calling at Havana and Cozumel or Key West, and eight-day voyages to Havana, Key West and Grand Cayman. 
To learn more about Carnival Cruise Line, visit Carnival.com