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Thursday, June 30, 2016

Miss World Australia 2016 to launch TAT's Women's Journey campaign

Tourism Authority of Thailand appoints Miss World Australia to launch its inaugural Women's Journey Thailand campaign.

Sydney, 30 June 2016: To mark the occasion of Her Majesty Queen Sirikit's birthday, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has designated August 2016 as a month for female travellers.

For the first time ever, TAT is launching a campaign to attract local and international female travellers to enjoy some of the country's many attractions with a wide range of activities, special offers, discounts and privileges, whether travelling alone or with groups of friends, across the month of August.

Miss World Australia will act as the TAT Brand Ambassador in Australia and will visit Thailand between 31 July – 9 August to attend the Opening Ceremony of "Women's Journey to Thailand 2016 before touring Bangkok, Ayutthaya, Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai and Phuket.

The initiative covers five different promotional concepts:

·      Beautiful Look
·      Beautiful Shape
·      Beautiful Mind
·      Beautiful Retreat
·      Beautiful Experience

In conjunction with the Amazing Thailand Grand Sale, which runs from 15 June to 31 August, women will be offered a wide range of offers and chances to win prizes.

In their Spend & Win campaign, for every 500 Baht spent, women will be awarded 10 chances to win a grand prize of 365 days travel in Thailand.

In addition to this, there will be daily offers at all 500 participating retailers, restaurants and attractions, with a total of 1500 special offers each month, and they will also be rewarded for shopping and dining with free cash vouchers.

Women will also be offered exclusive discounts on spa treatments, hotel stays, entry to attractions such as Chiang Mai Zoo and Underwater World, and wide range of retailers and restaurants. For the golfers out there, women will also be gifted complimentary green fees during August at seven participating golf clubs.

Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT Governor said, "Increasingly women are coming to Thailand in groups or as solo travellers and expect to find activities and attractions geared to their needs. So, this campaign will broaden their recognition on how Thailand can cater for a great experience to female travellers like nowhere else."

For more special offers and further details on Women's Journey Thailand, please click:

Fourth of July in Fort Worth, Texas

From the Macy's Firework Show over the East River to the Big Bay Boom Fireworks Show in San Diego, over-the-top July 4th celebrations occur across this great nation. Don't forget the Lone Star State when writing your Fourth of July roundups.

Here are four patriotic events occurring in Fort Worth, Texas:

Let freedom ring as the largest 4th of July fireworks show in North Texas lights up the sky, lasting approximately 28-minutes. Fort Worth's Fourth at Panther Island Pavilion is THE place to celebrate Independence Day in Fort Worth with free live music, free water tube rentals, a free kid zone featuring water slides and zip lines, Jet Ski and Flyboard shows and much more. Food and drink vendors will also be on site with plenty of options to satisfy any craving. General admission is free and VIP tent tickets are available for $40 online.

Pack a picnic and celebrate Independence Day in true patriotic fashion at the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra's Old-Fashioned Family Fireworks Picnic July 2nd, 3rd and 4th in the Fort Worth Botanic Gardens. Thrilling marches, heartfelt military salutes and a spectacular fireworks show will occur nightly. Picnic tables are patriotically themed red ($15 child, $30 adult), white ($20 child, $40 adult) and blue ($50 per person) with lawn passes available for $22 per person.

The world's largest honky-tonk turns it up for Billy Bob's Texas 4th of July PicnicSaturday, July 2. Formerly headlined by the great Willie Nelson, this year's picnic will feature Texas Country musicians in performance order: Mike & the Moonpies, Billy Joe Shaver, Shinyribs and Turnpike Troubadours. Doors open at 6PM and tickets are $30 for pit access and $20 for general admission.

A celebration fit for the whole family, the Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District will host a free July 4th festival including gunfight reenactments from the Legends of Texas following the world's only twice-daily cattle drive occurring at 11:30AM and 4PM, face painting for kids from 1-4PM and live musical entertainment inside the station.

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Historic Route 66

Scenic byways, quirky roadside attractions, charming small towns, Native American reservations, and beautiful national parks; elements that made Route 66 the iconic American road trip, can all be found in Flagstaff, Arizona. Also known as “The Mother Road,” Route 66 continues to bisect Flagstaff today and the road is lined with relics from the route's heyday as well as new businesses reinventing the spirit of Route 66. Route 66 was commissioned in 1926 but was not fully paved until 1937. During its life, the route continued to evolve and had several alignments to accommodate the increased traffic. Flagstaff was home to the original Route 66 “Muffler Man,” a 40-foot-tall fiberglass lumberjack, originally standing, axe in hand, at the Lumberjack Café to attract the business of hungry travelers.

Is your dream to hop on a Harley and cruise Route 66 “Easy Rider” style? Then Flagstaff is the perfect starting point for a motorcycle tour and adventure of a lifetime. At EagleRider Flagstaff located right on Route 66, find the perfect starting point to explore the Mother Road where tours begin directly on scenic roads without big-city traffic or long interstate detours. EagleRider Flagstaff offers a large variety of Harley-Davidson rentals, guided tours with multi-lingual guides, GPS navigation, and riding apparel and accessories for purchase.

Flagstaff's Historic Southside is home to the original alignment of Route 66 along a street now known as Mike's Pike. When traffic became too heavy, it was re-routed, but Mike's Pike continues to keep that Route 66 spirit alive. Three young entrepreneurs have taken up residence in the 1920s Milum Textile building on Mike's Pike, giving new life to this historic spot. Mother Road Brewing Company pays tribute to their location on the original Route 66. The tasting room offers samples of their various brews, with names like Roadside American Ale, Twin Arrows Brown Ale and Gold Road Kolsch. Flagstaff Bicycle Revolution has everything you could possibly need for a bike, and a coffee bar and rotating art exhibit to boot. Pizzicletta combines the owner's love of pizza, cycling and Italy into one amazing Neapolitan-style pizza joint. With a pizza oven handmade in Italy and gelato homemade daily you know you're in for a treat.;;

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Monday, June 27, 2016

What does the UK’s exit from the EU mean for travellers?

Ross Veitch, CEO and co-founder of Wego
Considerations of the impact of Brexit, the leading travel search site in the Asia Pacific and Middle East, reviews the effects of the UK’s separation from the European Union means for travellers.

“Regardless of whether you believe that Brexit was a positive or negative move for the UK, there will undoubtedly be repercussions for travellers in light of the decision,” said Ross Veitch, CEO and co-founder of Wego.

“The UK Pound has dropped 9.8 percent, with the value of the pound to the dollar at 1.3415 in early trading since the referendum result has become clear, which means a UK holiday is going to be cheaper for most foreign tourists than it has been for about 20 years,” Veitch continued. “In-destination trip costs such as accommodation, dining, entertainment and shopping will allow significantly better value for the foreign traveller after exchanging their local currency.”

“You can possibly expect to see a number of changes at arrival points at UK airports, as previously, as a member of the EU, travellers from EU countries were permitted visa free entry so the result could mean busier entry lines at customs as they queue up with other international visitors.”

“The UK’s airline network may also have to review regulations, which as a part of the EU secured single aviation area treaties across Europe, which may increase airfare costs for the UK’s national carriers,” Veitch added. “Accommodation costs however, could drop, as Britain fights to retain its large inbound visitor numbers from Europe who will no longer be able to travel freely into the country.”

“As a long-serving entry hub to Europe, London may now be increasingly challenged by other key EU hub airports such as Paris, Frankfurt and Amsterdam which will offer inbound travellers easier onward movement around EU member countries. Although it will take time, it’s likely the UK government will try to negotiate similar travel agreements to replicate those in place as a member of the EU,” said Veitch.

“High spending Arab travellers from the Gulf nations, where London has retained its number one most popular European destination for some time at, may consider selecting other destinations to take advantage of shopping and holiday opportunities. Rome is still a popular destination within Europe, and many football events drive visits to Spain and France.”

“As the dust settles, there’s no doubt that we’ll see visible changes in the UK’s travel industry, and the government will have the unenviable task of implementing independent regulations to maintain the country’s position as a global tourism hub and gateway to Europe,” Veitch concluded.

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Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Travel Writer Award Winners Announced in New Orleans at IPW 2016

Four travel journalists captured top honors in the U.S. Travel Association and Brand USA's 2016 IPW Travel Writer Awards competition, sponsored by CityPASS. The winners were announced today during a media reception at the IPW trade show in New Orleans, Louisiana. The U.S. Travel Association, which coordinates the awards, received more than 150 contest entries from journalists representing 58 countries. The winners are as follows:

Best IPW Host City (Orlando) Article — Brazilian editor Amanda Fernandes Leonel de Queiroz captured top honors in this category, which judges articles highlighting the previous year's IPW host city. After attending IPW 2015 in Orlando, Leonel was inspired to write a cover story for Melhor Viagem, a travel magazine targeting readers 55+ in Brazil. As the title of her article, “Orlando: De volta à infância” (Orlando: Back to Childhood), suggests, all you need to enjoy Orlando is a youthful spirit and a willingness to explore new horizons.

Best U.S. Travel Destination Article — Due to the high number of outstanding entries received, the judges selected two winners in this category. Phoebe Smith, editor-in-chief of the U.K.-based travel magazine Wanderlust, won for her story “A Walk in the Woods.” Using Bill Bryson's classic travel book of the same name as her inspiration, Smith drove the entire 2,180-mile length of the Appalachian Trail over a two-week period, cherry-picking the main highlights to explore on foot as she went. The resulting story, published in the October 2015 issue of Wanderlust, is chock-full of great information for would-be hikers, as well as engaging descriptions of the colorful personalities Smith met along the way.

Also winning in this category is Lindsay Sutton, a freelance travel journalist from the United Kingdom. On the 100th anniversary of President Theodore Roosevelt's creation of America's expansive and much-envied National Parks system, Sutton chronicled a trek across North Dakota, the U.S. state where the idea for the National Parks system was born. Sutton's article, “Follow in a President's Footsteps,” appeared in the Manchester Evening News in February 2016. Sutton's prose takes readers down unsigned dirt roads, through the rugged North Dakota Badlands, and to the far corners of Theodore Roosevelt National Park, all the while highlighting the personality and motivations of the man who would become America's first “conservationist in chief.”

Best Trade Publication Article — Héctor Fabio Rizzo, editor of Mexico's TOUR Magazine, won top honors for “La NUEVA New York” (The NEW New York). Through beautiful pictures and words, Rizzo's article describes the distinctive flavor of New York, created by its diverse population, neighborhoods and energy. His story invites readers to discover the Big Apple's new attractions and features, including One World Observatory at One World Trade Center, the 9/11 Memorial and Museum, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, relocated to a brand-new building in New York's Meatpacking District.

During their evaluation of the entries, this year's judges looked for articles that featured original ideas and exceptional storytelling skills, as well as prose that would inspire readers to travel to the United States.

The IPW Travel Writer Awards competition is held annually. Each of the winning writers receives $1,000 U.S. and an award certificate. This year's competition was sponsored by CityPASS, the company that offers discounted admission packages to the top attractions in 12 North American destinations.

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Spring Into Summer Travel in the Lone Star State

The start of the summer travel season is right around the corner with Memorial Day Weekend, and Texas Tourism invites travelers to take a Texas-sized adventure in the Lone Star State. When it comes to family travel, Texas is full of possibilities, boasting more than 600 miles of coastline, scenic mountain ranges, numerous national parks, historic sites and a variety of attractions. Pack your bags and embark on a Texas adventure.
The start of the summer travel season is right around the corner with Memorial Day Weekend, and Texas Tourism invites travelers to take a Texas-sized adventure in the Lone Star State. When it comes to family travel, Texas is full of possibilities, boasting more than 600 miles of coastline, scenic mountain ranges, numerous national parks, historic sites and a variety of attractions. Pack your bags and embark on a Texas adventure.

Sink your toes in the sand with a Gulf Coast adventure beginning with Corpus Christi, one of the world's top kite-boarding destinations. Galveston, a unique 32-mile beach town, offers soft sandy beaches; one of the largest, most historically significant collections of 19th-century buildings; and is home to more than 500 species of birds, making it a top birding destination. Another must-see Texas beach is Padre Island National Seashore, a safe nesting ground for the Kemp's Ridley sea turtle and a haven for 380 bird species.

Prefer mountains or canyons to waves? West Texas is the place to be. Visitors marvel at the beauty of Big Bend National Park, Davis Mountains State Park in Fort Davis, Franklin Mountains State Park in El Paso, or Palo Duro Canyon State Park in Canyon. In addition to scenic mountain ranges, West Texas is home to many outdoor activities, including horseback riding, white water rafting, kayaking and canoeing. For a different type of terrain, head to Big Thicket National Preserve in East Texas. A convergence of ecosystems, Big Thicket protects the incredible diversity of life found in the multiple habitats. Hiking trails and waterways meander through nine different ecosystems, from longleaf pine forests to cypress-lined bayous.

In addition to Texas' great outdoors, a variety of adventures and activities can be found in the state's diverse cities. In Texas' Capital city, families will enjoy heading to the Thinkery, Austin's innovative children's museum where people connect with ideas by doing, creating and experiencing. Another must-see is the Bob Bullock Texas State History Museum, where visitors can explore the story of Texas. Further south in San Antonio, visitors will enjoy not only the River Walk and the Alamo, but the Spanish Missions – a UNESCO World Heritage Site – and Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch, a safari experience right here in Texas. Adventure-seeking visitors can get their fix of thrills at Six Flags Fiesta Texas, which houses pulse-pounding roller coasters and gentler options for the kids.

In Texas' largest city, Houston, visitors of all ages will delight in the Museum District, made up of 19 cultural institutions including, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. For an out of this world experience, head to Space Center Houston, which features more than 400 space artifacts, attractions, permanent and traveling exhibits and theaters related to the history and future of space exploration. Up north in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex, visitors will have no shortage of activities to enjoy. The Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District  and the Perot Museum of Nature and Science will have kids of all ages exploring and making discoveries, while the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden allows visitors to soak in the beauty of the outdoors. There's also plenty of fun to be had in nearby Arlington, at one of the biggest theme parks in the state, Six Flags Over Texas. Its claim to fame is The Texas Giant, while younger patrons will enjoy Bugs Bunny Boomtown. Across the street, more than 3,000,000 gallons of water await at Six Flags Hurricane Harbor.

From sandy beaches, to picturesque mountains, to urban centers, Texas offers a multitude of incredible leisure experiences for visitors of all ages, palates and interests. In fact, these experiences helped generate an estimated $69 billion in spending in the state in 2015, which directly supported 653,000 jobs. Additionally, domestic leisure travel to Texas destinations continued to increase in 2015, accounting for nearly three out of every four travel days across the state and roughly 60 percent of travel spending.

To learn more about Texas travel events and destinations, or to order a free Texas State Travel Guide, please visit, and connect with Texas Tourism on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.   # # #   About Texas Tourism: Texas Tourism's mission is to enhance and extend local economic development efforts by marketing Texas as a premier travel destination in out-of-state domestic and international markets, generating non-Texan travel to the state. Travel and tourism are vital to the Texas economy, with an estimated $69 billion spent at destinations across the state in 2015. Travel spending directly supported 653,000 jobs across a variety of Texas industries.  

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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Ogoh-Ogoh! Wonderful Indonesia joins forces with MONA for Dark Mofo

20 June 2016: Bali came to the Apple Isle last night as thousands of people celebrated the winter solstice with a Balinese demon-purging "Ogoh-Ogoh" procession and burning ritual in Hobart.

The Ogoh-Ogoh procession and burning was part of MONA's Dark Mofo festival program, with the support of the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism (Wonderful Indonesia), Consulate General of the Republic of Indonesia for Victoria and Tasmania, and the Ministry of Education and Culture.

The procession and burning – Ogoh-Ogoh: The Burning – was the climactic event of MONA's midwinter Dark Mofo festival, which runs from the 10th to 21st of June.

Dark Mofo is an annual pilgrimage south celebrating the dark through large-scale public art, food, film, music, light and noise. Major events including the City of Hobart Dark Mofo Winter Feast and the industrial-scale public art precinct Dark Park, attracting up to 10,000 people each per night

The ogoh-ogoh, paper-mache monsters, were made in the weeks leading up to the purging by Balinese artists working alongside staff and students from the University of Tasmania. During the first week of Dark Mofo, festival goers are invited to write down their fears and pin them to the weedy-sea dragon-inspired effigy. Pots and pans at the ready, everyone is then invited to join a procession from Parliament Lawns to Dark Park, culminating in the burning of this year's ogoh-ogoh—and with it, everyone's fears.

"Dark Mofo is about the Tasmanian community coming together to embrace our longest and darkest night of the year. The Balinese ceremony of ogoh-ogoh is a great way for us to symbolically cleanse our fears and look forward to the days becoming longer," Dark Mofo Creative Director Leigh Carmichael said.

"Dark Mofo is a Winter Solstice festival, so we like to explore darker themes. Facing our fears is an important part of this, and we love how the community has come together for this final event of the festival.

"Our cross-cultural exchange is so important for Dark Mofo. We hope that the ogoh-ogoh continues for many years and we build stronger relationships with Indonesia, with the people and culture. We plan to visit Indonesia soon to explore opportunities around commissioning new work from Indonesian artists, and hope to include more Indonesian food and art in coming years."

Wonderful Indonesia hopes that with continued engagement in events such as Dark Mofo, the number of Australians visiting Indonesia, which has recently surpassed the number of Aussies visiting New Zealand, will continue to rise.

According to Mr Nadjib RIPHAT KESOEMA, Indonesia's Ambassador to Australia, their involvement in Dark Mofo is significant.

"It shows the people of Tasmania the cultural richness of Indonesia. Last night, Tasmanians were introduced to ogoh-ogoh from Bali, as well as bamboo gila from Maluku, and Central-Javanese gamelan. It's our hope that Australians will choose to visit various places throughout Indonesia, beyond Bali. I'm looking forward to continued involvement with Dark Mofo, hopefully introducing Australians to much more of our culture, art and cuisine."

Lilis Fauziah, Assistant Deputy Director, Ministry of Tourism, Republic of Indonesia, said the event was a huge opportunity to showcase Indonesian culture to a large audience in Australia and hopefully encourage more Australians to visit the country to experience more.

According to the Indonesian Ambassador, Mr Nadjib Riphat Kesoema, "We are excited to be a part of this extremely popular cultural festival. It's a great opportunity for us to showcase just one small aspect of Indonesia's rich cultural heritage, and we hope it generates a greater interest among Australians to visit and find out more."

Traditionally, the main purpose of making ogoh-ogoh is the purification of the natural environment of any spiritual pollutants emitted from the activities of living beings (especially humans). In Bali, each village usually builds one ogoh-ogoh, and sometimes smaller ogoh-ogoh are also built by school kids. After being paraded on a convoy around the town, finally it is burnt to ashes in a cemetery as a symbol of self-purification. The following day is Nyepi, a Hindu celebration and the Balinese "Day of Silence" marked by silence, fasting, and meditation.

Harley-Davidson Museum® Puts the Pedal to the Metal with its Lineup of 2016 Exhibits

The Harley-Davidson Museum is going full throttle into 2016 with high-octane exhibits, events and programming that shine a spotlight on Harley-Davidson's deep ties to the sport of racing.

It all kick-starts this week with two new exhibits that will go on display Friday, Jan. 22. The Bridge Gallery will be taken over by Race Day: Photos from the Flat Track, which will feature dozens of photos from flat track racing's foremost photographer, Dave Hoenig. Also on Friday, the public will get its first opportunity to see the revamped Design Lab. Racing Machines from the KR to the XR drills down deep to show how Harley-Davidson engineers created the world's foremost racing team. The Museum will also have extended hours on Jan. 22 (10 a.m. – 9 p.m.) as a part of Gallery Night.

Later this year, the Museum's special summer exhibit will open June 17, with a special media preview day on June 16. Drag Racing: America's Fast Time will give museum-goers the opportunity to trace drag racing's humble back-road – and often illegal – beginnings to the high-tech and high-powered races of today.

With new exhibits, unique race-inspired items from The Shop, a new menu from MOTOR® Bar & Restaurant to be revealed Jan. 27, parties, events and so much more scheduled for 2016, the Harley-Davidson Museum is on a mission to show the world that #SpeedThrills.

Race Day: Photos from the Flat Track, Jan. 22-Sept. 5

The Museum will start kicking up a little dirt on Jan. 22, when Race Day: Photos from the Flat Track, a photo exhibit featuring dozens of images from flat track racing's preeminent photographer, is unveiled. Dave Hoenig takes you down to pit row and into the grandstands to document the thrills and chills of life in the fast lane. Hoenig has captured more than 1,000 races in his career, keeping his lens trained on the pageantry, emotion and camaraderie of a day at the track.

Racing Machines from the KR to the XR

The Museum's Design Lab, which recently underwent a renovation, will also reopen on Jan. 22. The installation focuses on the role Harley-Davidson's hardscrabble engineering team played in creating the legendary bikes that would dominate the race tracks of the 1950s, '60s and '70s. This exhibit shows how man and machine have combined to make Harley-Davidson Racing a king and the winner's circle its throne.

Additionally, the Museum lobby will feature a newly acquired 1947 WR Harley-Davidson racer believed to be one of only 20 made. The bike was also discovered to have Wisconsin ties, as it was owned by legendary racer Ray Tursky of Madison.

Drag Racing: America's Fast Time summer exhibit; June 17 - Sept. 5

Go under the hood with mind-blowing mad scientists of speed to see just how much blood, sweat and elbow grease hot rodders pour into their machines – two wheels or four – in their race against time. See the sport make tracks from its humble beginnings on darkened streets to the bright lights of the winner's circle as the need for speed permeated pop culture.

Confirmed artifacts and exhibit details will be shared this spring.

The fun doesn't stop at the Museum doors. The Museum campus will be buzzing with activities and can't-miss events like our monthly bike nights, specialty dinners just in time for Valentine's Day and more. Coming later this month, MOTOR® Bar & Restaurant will unveil its new menu, with a focus on American classics.

About the Harley-Davidson Museum

The Harley-Davidson Museum is located at 400 W. Canal St. in Milwaukee and provides a glimpse of American history and culture like you've never seen it before – through the lens of Harley-Davidson Motor Company. The Museum, a top destination in Milwaukee and the state of Wisconsin, is open year-round and attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors to the area each year. The 20-acre campus offers abundant and free parking, and includes MOTOR® Bar & Restaurant and The Shop. For more information on the Museum's galleries, exhibits, special events, tickets and more, visit the new and improved

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New Developments in Detroit

News of new restaurants, hotels, retail and other new developments in Detroit are being announced all the time. From the Cobo Square and the Little Caesars Arena to the Detroit Zoo and Motor City Harley Davidson, Detroit is bustling with new exciting activity.

World-Class, Mixed-Use Sports and Entertainment District Coming to Detroit

The District Detroit will be 50 blocks of thriving businesses, parks, restaurants, bars and event destinations. It will be home to the young and the young at heart, families, new residents and long-time residents who want to be where the action is. It will connect Downtown and Midtown into one contiguous, walkable area, where families, sports fans, entrepreneurs, job seekers, entertainment lovers and others who crave a vibrant urban setting can connect with each other and the city they love. Recently Olympia Development of Michigan, LLC, has announced plans for more than 200,000 square feet of privately financed retail and office development projects in The District Detroit. The structures, along with further expected private retail, office and residential development throughout The District Detroit, bring the currently expected total project investment to as much as $1.2 billion by 2020, with $900 million plus of that investment from the private sector. Original plans called for a $650 million total investment in The District Detroit by 2022 at the earliest.

The District's main feature will be the Little Caesars Arena, home to the Detroit Red Wings, other sports and entertainment events, concerts, family shows and community functions. This will not only service as a hockey arena to the Detroit Red Wings but will have active community spaces including on-site practice ice for amateur hockey use and an outdoor plaza featuring area for entertainment will be accessible. There will also be a more interactive experience for fans such as enhanced video and sound capabilities for a more immersive experience and creative food-service options. The expected completion date for the Little Caesars Arena is summer 2017.

Streaming video of the construction site is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week at

DFW International Airport Becomes Only U.S. Airport Providing A Full Range Of Facilitation Services for Travelers Entering The U.S.

Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) has expanded and launched more new services for international travelers and is the only U.S. airport that offers Automated Passport Control© (APC) with automated passport processing for eligible international travelers, customers from all 38 visa waiver countries, customers with only carry-on bags and Lawful Permanent Residents (citizens with “green cards”).

“Since the implementation of Automated Passport Control we have seen great results with more than 70 percent of all international customers automatically processed through the APCs,” said Sean Donohue, CEO at DFW Airport. “Working in partnership with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, we have been able to shorten wait times for international travelers passing through CBP even with an 8.46% increase in overall passenger traffic.”

Most recently, DFW expanded its leading edge APC technology from 30 self-processing kiosks to 51; launched Carry E-Z© lines, labeled in green in the International Arrivals Hall, which enable international customers traveling without checked bags to clear the CBP arrival area in one step and move directly to the landside concourse bypassing the baggage claim process; instituted automatic processing for citizens from all 38 visa waiver countries in cooperation with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection; and became the first and only U.S. airport to begin automatic processing of U.S. Lawful Permanent Residents (citizens with green cards). DFW also offers Global Entry with 20 automatic processing stations also recently expanded.

“CBP is committed to working with its partners to implement solutions to improve efficiency while ensuring our primary mission to secure our nation remains a priority,” said Cleatus P. Hunt Jr., U.S. Customs and Border Protection's area port director. “APC and One-Stop (called Carry E-Z©) are the latest examples of our commitment to facilitate legitimate travel in a secure manner with less delay.”

DFW was recognized by President Obama in May for leveraging technology to reduce wait times by nearly 40% with its APC kiosks. The President ordered the technology to be implemented at the nation's top 25 airports.

“Our ultimate goal is to be the preeminent global hub for passengers around the world,” said Donohue. “Making the entry process to the U.S. the most expedient, secure and convenient for travelers helps put DFW in the forefront in the minds of international travelers.”

DFW has not only developed new systems and services, but is working to address every step in the process once an international passenger lands. On July 15, DFW will expand CBP baggage egress from 7 to 13 positions and the Terminal D22 checkpoint will grow from 4 to 6 lanes to better accommodate international passengers connecting on other flights.

DFW's Automated Passport Control, a proprietary system first implemented last fall is part of an overall passenger facilitation strategy which includes a total of 51 kiosks that speed up the entry process. DFW's APC is also processing more than 70 percent of arriving customers with an average processing time of 14 minutes or less.

“Now, all of our 51 APC kiosks are capable of handling US citizens, Canadian visitors, Visa Waiver customers and LPRs…and it's making a big difference in the customer experience,” said Donohue.

In its first few months, DFW's APC was processing about half of DFW's international arrivals. On June 21, 2014, DFW saw the highest international passenger entries ever in one day as more than 12,500 international travelers entered the U.S. at DFW with over 9,100 of these travelers, or 73 percent, processed through DFW's APC. June also saw another milestone achievement for DFW with total travelers processed by APC exceeding one million since its automated system was implemented last October.

In addition to the latest new services, DFW has worked with federal agencies, legislators and industry partners to implement innovative solutions to improve the customer experience and facilitate processing international travelers, including early adoption of federal trusted traveler programs (Global Entry and TSA Pre-√), payment of some overtime costs for CBP officers, and support for additional staffing for CBP starting next year.

For the summer season running from June 1 through August 31, 2014, DFW expects to host 17 million customers, which would make the summer of 2014 the busiest summer ever at DFW and 2.4% above the same period last year.

About Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW)

Celebrating its 40th Anniversary in 2014, Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) is the world's third busiest, hosting 1,850 flights a day and serving more than 60 million customers a year. Located halfway between the cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, DFW Airport provides nonstop service to 148 domestic and 55 international destinations. For seven consecutive years, DFW has ranked among the top ten large airports worldwide for customer service in surveys conducted by Airports Council International. For the latest news, real-time flight information, parking availability, or further details regarding the many services provided at DFW International Airport, visit or download the Official DFW Airport Mobile App for Apple iOS, Android or Blackberry devices.

(re)defining DFW International Airport

DFW International Airport's $2.3 billion Terminal Renewal and Improvement Program (TRIP) is (re)defining first class for this global gateway. For the latest details regarding TRIP, log on to

Follow DFW International Airport On:

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What's New in New York City


No city in the world can match New York City's unparalleled energy, or the tremendous pride New Yorkers take in opening their arms to our visitors. There is always something fun, exciting and inviting to do here, no matter what kind of experience you prefer. With Broadway shows, outdoor movies or concerts, tours of museums or historical attractions, cuisine from every world culture, and more, there are endless opportunities in each of the City's five boroughs—the Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island—to discover something new.

In 2015, New York City welcomed a record 58.3 million visitors, the City's sixth consecutive year for record-breaking tourism. Visitation for 2015 comprised an estimated 46 million domestic and 12.3 million international visitors, both all-time highs. This year, New York City is expected to welcome 59.7 million visitors, comprised of approximately 47 million domestic and 12.7 million international travelers. New York City has the most active hotel development pipeline in the country, with approximately 109,000 hotel rooms as of June 2016, and an expected inventory of 135,000 hotel rooms by 2019.

This June, NYC & Company announced the organization's visual rebrand, including the launch of the newly rebuilt and reimagined—the trusted, authentic and centralized five-borough tourism resource. New elements of NYC & Company's brand overhaul include two custom typefaces, more than 250 custom icons and a custom color palette, all inspired by New York City's vibrancy, energy, diversity and legacy. New capabilities and features on the relaunched website include: mobile-first and responsive design to optimize user experiences across devices; increased video presence with more than 200 videos, high-impact visuals, real-time responsiveness to trending topics; integrated and contextual mapping and a flexible platform to serve multiple audiences; and the ability to surface member, partner and user-generated content (

NYC & Company's biannual dining and theater promotions make visiting NYC even more affordable. The first and largest dining program of its kind, NYC Restaurant Week offers discounted three-course prix fixe menus at more than 350 restaurants every January-February and July-August. This summer, the program will take place July 25–August 19, with reservations opening on July 11 ( Launched in 2011, NYC Broadway Week (September 5–18; tickets on sale August 18) and NYC Off-Broadway Week (September 26–October 9; tickets on sale September 12), launched in 2009, are designed to increase ticket sales during typically slower periods of attendance every winter and fall and offer visitors and New Yorkers the opportunity to see some of NYC's best shows, with 2-for-1 tickets ( and

Growing the family segment is a key focus for NYC & Company. Since the launch of its Official NYC Family Ambassador program in 2009, family travel to New York City has increased by more than 30 percent. The program was created to help position New York City as a welcoming family-friendly destination, encourage families to visit year-round and invite those who have already visited New York City to return and enjoy all of the new attractions the City has to offer. In April 2016, NYC & Company announced its newest Official NYC Family Ambassadors, The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Previous family ambassadors include Dora, Curious George, Where's Waldo, the Muppets, The Smurfs and Sesame Street (

This spring, NYC & Company's See It for Yourself campaign can be seen in markets around the world, including Australia, Austria, Brazil, France, Germany, Italy, Norway and the UK. The new campaign showcases the vibrancy of the City's iconic landmarks and attractions with its colorful and eye-catching creative (   

In 2015 NYC & Company launched a new Free in NYC guide ( highlighting the best free activities New York City has to offer, including events, museums, tours, TV tapings, attractions and more.

For a list of annual events taking place in New York City's five boroughs, visit For a list of things to do around New York City this summer, take a look at our summer guide at

For general information on New York City, visit

Traveloscopy | 

Thursday, June 16, 2016

TAT Newsroom Blogger Campaign to launch on 16 June

TAT Newsroom Blogger Campaign to launch on 16 June  

Bangkok, 15 June, 2016 – The date has been set for the long-awaited TAT Newsroom Blogger campaign to start accepting entries. From 16 June, 2016, the world's talented bloggers and photographers can upload their stories and images of Thailand and get the chance to win an exclusive trip to the kingdom.

Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) said, "Here at the TAT, we are always writing stories about the wonders to be found in Thailand. So it's really exciting to be able to hear from the world's talented bloggers about their own adventures in the kingdom and to see some of the amazing pictures they have taken. We want to hear how people have experienced Thailand and connected with the people. We want to know how they've been inspired to creativity. We are very much looking forward to 16 June, 2016 when these tales of Thailand start to flood in."

The TAT Newsroom Blogger Campaign is aimed at promoting the charms of and attractions of Thailand, its culture and its people through stories and real experiences. It is the kingdom's unique blend of, traditions and festivals that epitomise "Thainess" and make the country stand out as offering unique experiences to all visitors, writers and photographers especially.

The TAT Newsroom Blogger Campaign is open to anyone who has an active online blog or social media presence. All that is required is for bloggers and photographers to write a blog post about their experiences in Thailand or upload a favourite Thailand photo.

To enter, bloggers must have a high-profile and regularly-updated social media presence as well as a number of regular followers. This could include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google Plus, etc. or a personal blog that covers travel, food or culture topics. Entrants also need to be followers of the TAT Newsroom via social media platforms. Content bloggers who have yet to come to Thailand can also enter the contest by writing about the amazing experiences they would love to enjoy in the kingdom.

Entrants can upload up to five stories and photos to the specially created TAT Newsroom Blogger website,, which will be launched on 16 June, 2016. The Campaign will be open for 45 days or until 31 July, 2015. After posting their stories and photos, the bloggers and photographers can then ask their online followers and members of the public to vote. The top three bloggers and three photographers with the highest numbers of votes will win an all-expenses-paid trip to Thailand, which will take place from 16-20 September, 2016. The next three most voted, each, for story blogs and photos will receive a special prize.

Voting on the website will be open from 16 June to 10 August, 2016, and the top three active voters will get the chance to receive prizes with their names entered in to a lucky draw. By signing in via their personal Facebook or Google plus accounts, voters are allowed to cast one vote per hour for up to 10 votes per day.

Facebook: TAT Newsroom
Twitter: TAT Newsroom  

MTA Members upgrade to first class Rocky Mountains lounge

Pictured MTA – Mobile Travel Agents' Beate Carr (on left) and Sonia Jones lounging around as they take in yet another memorable view of the magnificent Rocky Mountains while participating in an exclusive study tour with the iconic Rocky Mountaineer.

The MTA Members were fortunate to experience the Rocky Mountaineer's best-selling 'First Passage to the West!' program, features of  which include overnight stays in Calgary, Banff and Vancouver as part of a mountains meets coast combination.



Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Harmony of the Seas’ lion gets the jump on MTA’s Tracey Flower

It's not every day you get jumped by a lion and certainly not on board a luxury cruise ship.

But that's exactly what happened to MTA – Mobile Travel Agents' Member and current Cruise Line Industry Association (CLIA) 'Consultant of the Year' Tracey Flower when she was invited to join an exclusive pre-inaugural cruise of Royal Caribbean International's Harmony of the Seas from Barcelona.

Tracey met Alex the Lion from 'Madagascar' as part of the ship's featured DreamWorks experience which enables younger passengers to meet with many of their movie heroes including Princess Fiona and Shrek, Po from 'Kung Fu Panda' and several other popular cartoon characters.

Additional highlights of her cruise experience included the opportunity to sample a host of the vessel's huge array of features ranging from ice skating, visiting 'Central Park' in the middle of the ship featuring real trees and plants, a 10-storey slide, two flow riders and Jamie Oliver's on board Italian restaurant.



Fantasea Coastline Cruise now includes Whale Watch guarantee

Fantasea Cruising Sydney, operators of Sydney Seven Wonders Coastline adventure cruises, a day trip covering the seven most iconic sights on Sydney's waterways and coast, have added whale watching as a no-cost bonus - with a guarantee.

Angus Campbell, General Manager of Fantasea Cruising Sydney announced "From May to November, our whale watching season, all guests travelling with us on a Seven Wonders cruise will also get the opportunity to see humpback whales as we return from Port Hacking back to Sydney Harbour. We are so confident they will see whales we are offering our Whale Watching Guarantee. If you don't see a whale then we will provide you with a complimentary ticket on one of our Fantasea Whale Watching cruises."

"The Seven Wonders Cruise provides the opportunity to experience the harbour and coastal highlights of Sydney in one day. From inner harbour sites to historical monuments plus whales, there is no better way to experience what the city has to offer. Adding to the experience, our onboard team will provide expert commentary, pointing out places of special interest as we move from place to place. With access to a secluded beach to relax and unwind, this is a trip that has something for everyone.

The highest rating of all Fantasea Cruising Sydney coastal adventures, the Seven Wonders Cruise is popular with interstate and overseas travellers. Sydney locals too are now also enjoying exploring from the water - a special way to introduce visitors to Sydney, harbour and coast.

The six hour Seven Wonders adventure cruise departs Darling Harbour on Thursdays and Sundays at 10.30am, providing spectacular views of the Harbour Bridge, Opera House, Sydney Heads and Bondi Beach, before heading to Botany Bay and Captain Cook's first landing place where he first stepped ashore in 1770.

After lunch ashore in Port Hacking, time is spent at Bundeena in the Royal National Park viewing ancient indigenous rock carvings, before heading back to Sydney Harbour to view Manly and Middle Head, returning to Darling Harbour. Throughout the tour the crew are constantly looking for opportunities to spend time with the marine wildlife, especially during the whale migration season.

*In the interest of passenger safety, departures are subject to sea and weather conditions with 24 hours notice.
**Minimum age for travel is 5 years old.

Fantasea Seven Wonders Coastal Adventure information:

Lasting approximately 6 hours, voyages run daily with departure at 10.30am / returning at 4.30pm. Embarkation is conveniently located at Darling Harbour (King Street Wharf #9). Further information available at
Each cruise provides the opportunity to enjoy the foreshores of Sydney Harbour, exiting Sydney Heads for Port Hacking and then returning to search for and observe the numerous pods of whales.

Fantasea Cruising Sydney reports it has already had plenty of recent humpback and southern right whale sightings and anticipates this will be a full-on season all the way through until early November.

Pricing: Adults $165 / Child 5 to 15* $100 / Family (2 adults, 2 children) $495.

* Minimum age for travel is 5 years old.

Fantasea Seven Wonders whale sighting guarantee - if on the Seven Wonders adventure cruise whales are not sighted then guests will receive a free Fantasea Whale Watch experience valid between June and October 2016. Cruises operate daily during this period and depart from Darling Harbour and Circular Quay


Fantasea Cruising Sydney is part of the Riverside Marine Group of Companies; an Australian, family owned company, established in 1928.

With over 30 years of experience in tourism, Fantasea's modern fleet provides half a million guests a year from across Australia and around the world with authentic Australian experiences. Fantasea is reinvigorating Sydney Harbour cruising with its friendly, knowledgeable team, providing memorable and enjoyable experiences that take in some of Australia's most recognised sites.

The fleet of 23 boats, varying in capacity from 1 to 400 provide a range of charter opportunities for social events - Christmas parties, birthdays and anniversaries, corporate events, educational excursions as well as special events that include regular Seven Wonders exploration voyages, the Bledisloe Cup, Sydney to Hobart Boxing Day Yacht Race, Vivid from the harbour, and New Year's Eve fireworks experiences.

Other services include Fantasea Water Taxis, the largest fleet of water taxis on Sydney Harbour; Fantasea Cruising Magnetic car and passenger ferries from Townsville to Magnetic Island in Queensland; and Fantasea Cruising Pittwater, the regular ferry service for the Northern Sydney beaches and Central Coast.

Further information available at

For bookings and information call 1800 326 822 / email or visit the Fantasea Flagship Store, Pier 26, Darling Harbour Sydney NSW 2000

The Savoy Suite, An Artist’s Residence New Two-Bedroom River View Suite At The Savoy

Featuring Curated Art Programme And Artist's Salons

The Savoy, a Fairmont Managed Hotel, has unveiled The Savoy Suite, a new two-bedroom suite on the sixth floor of the riverside of the hotel.

As well as providing the setting for an authentically London stay, The Savoy Suite will feature a changing private art collection by a contemporary artist adorning the walls of the suite. Guests staying in the suite will have the unique opportunity to enjoy their own private exhibition within their accommodation. The Savoy Suite, an Artist's Residence will also host regular Artist's Salons, a chance for the artist whose work is displayed in the suite to introduce their work to guests during an informal evening event.

First to display their work in The Savoy Suite will be renowned artist Ralph Heimans, the only artist chosen to paint an official portrait of Her Majesty the Queen in her Diamond Jubilee year. In association with publisher Random House, Heimans has painted a series of portraits of celebrated authors commissioned to rewrite a Shakespeare play in prose, as part of Shakespeare400. The remarkable portraits, known collectively as 'Shakespeare Revisited', feature Margaret Atwood, Tracy Chevalier, Gillian Flynn, Jo Nesbø and Anne Tyler, and will be transferred from the Globe to the walls of The Savoy Suite for summer 2016.

Open and light-filled, the layout of The Savoy Suite, an Artist's Residence exaggerates the unrivalled views of the River Thames and iconic London landmarks across two large windows. It was this same view that inspired Claude Monet to paint his famous series of London bridges as he resided in this same suite for the first of three lengthy stays at The Savoy between 1899 and 1901. Since then, so prominent are The Savoy's links with the art world that it was deemed appropriate to honour all artists, both past and living, who have been inspired by, and continue to take inspiration from, The Savoy.

Throughout the European summer in 2016, guests of The Savoy Suite will have the unique chance to visit Westminster Abbey with artist Ralph Heimans for a private viewing of his portrait of The Queen, which can only be viewed by special invitation only. Ralph is also available for portrait commissions and will be available for sittings within the suite. Price on request.

The Savoy Suite, an Artist's Residence is available to book and starts from AU$12,700 per night.

Interior Notes:

Award-winning designer, Pierre Yves Rochon and ReardonSmith Architects have returned to head up the design of The Savoy Suite, maintaining the grandeur of The Savoy whilst adding a modern elegance for 21st century clientele. Edwardian influences are combined with a colour palette of creams, ivories and blacks in keeping with the 1930's, which run through other areas of the hotel. A bolder, contrasting cinnamon tone will provide warmth and complement the wood used throughout the suite.

The Suite, boasting unrivalled views of the River Thames and iconic London landmarks, will comprise an entrance foyer, master bedroom, en-suite bathroom and master dressing room, lounge with fireplace and private luxury bar and pantry, and a hydraulic table that can be installed for modern, flexible dining. An adjoining suite is to be incorporated into the design to make for a more spacious, two-bedroom suite, in recognition of the growing trend of guests requiring larger guest suites. Guests will also benefit from 24-hour Savoy Butler service.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Citizenship of the Great Barrier Reef up for grabs

People around the world will be mobilised to become advocates for the Great Barrier Reef through a global campaign to be launched in Cairns in December.

Tourism Tropical North Queensland (TTNQ) Chief Executive Officer Alex de Waal welcomed the announcement by Federal Member for Leichhardt Warren Entsch that a re-elected Malcolm Turnbull government would invest $1.3 million to launch the Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef campaign.

Diver meets another citizen of the reef at Lady Elliot Island (Diveplanit) 
"Warren has been an advocate for promoting Tropical North Queensland and the health of the Great Barrier Reef and we thank him for his support for this important campaign," he said.

"People from around the world will be invited to become Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef to galvanise the symbiotic relationship between education, conservation and tourism.

"The campaign aims to empower current and future generations of the world with the knowledge, experience and ability to protect and enjoy the Great Barrier Reef.

"Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef will be delivered through a central online platform where people can apply for membership and it will showcase Great Barrier Reef education, conservation, tourism resources, activities, partners, benefits and participation opportunities.

"We want people of all nationalities to emotionally and financially buy into the protection, promotion and enjoyment of this World Heritage area.

"This is an opportunity for the people of Tropical North Queensland to show leadership by calling on the rest of the world to join them in this campaign to be an advocate for the Great Barrier Reef.

"Pre-register at to show your support for the campaign and become a Citizen of the Great Barrier Reef.

"Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef has been initiated by Tourism Tropical North Queensland with the support of founding partners James Cook University and the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority.

"The Great Barrier Reef Foundation will facilitate all donations and investment in research projects funded by Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef.

"Other content partners will include the Reef and Rainforest Research Centre and Reef HQ Aquarium.

"The co-founder and founding CEO of Earth Hour, Andy Ridley, will support the development and implementation of the Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef program and will serve on the Strategic Management Committee.

"Both Tourism Australia and Tourism and Events Queensland have committed to utilise the full weight of their digital assets to promote the Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef movement.

"Thought leaders like Jean-Michel Cousteau and Barack Obama will be approached to lead the campaign's social media engagement which will devised by Rumble Creative & Media's James Burchill and Nancy Hartley who were the creative directors for the Best Job in the World viral social media campaign.

"With support from the Cairns Regional Council, a public artwork will be commissioned to feature on The Cairns Esplanade as the 'Citizens Gateway to the Great Barrier Reef'.

"This Gateway will be digitally interactive and provide a view to the Great Barrier Reef on the horizon.

"It will be highlighted in all campaign activity to encourage visitors to photograph this iconic sculpture and engage in social media communication about their visit to the Reef."

The objectives of Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef are:

·        PARTICIPATION: Empower citizens and organisations of the world to demonstrate ownership, leadership and responsibility for preserving and experiencing the Great Barrier Reef.

·        CONSERVATION: Promote, foster and support research and management activities that contribute to best-practice conservation of the Great Barrier Reef for current and future generations.

·        EDUCATION: Increase local and global awareness of the Great Barrier Reef and its universal value, and communicate initiatives and progress towards its sustainable existence.

·        TOURISM: Encourage sustainable tourism experiences and visitation to the Great Barrier Reef and through visitation, increase advocacy for its value and conservation.

Solomon Islands visitor arrivals continue to build

Honiara, Solomon Islands – A continuing strong performance across March has seen the Solomon Islands close off Q1 with a 14.5 per cent increase in international visitor arrivals including a marked 19.4 per cent increase in Asian-based traffic.

Official Solomon Islands government statistics released this week show a total of 5,037 international visitors arrived over the Jan to March period.

This compares with the 4,399 figure achieved for the same period in 2015.

Australian figures continued to dominate, the 2024 figure recorded across Q1 a 15.6 per cent increase on the 1750 total recorded last year.

US visitor arrivals again showed strong growth with a 9.11 increase backing up the 41.0 per cent growth recorded in February and March.

Solomon Islands Visitors Bureau (SIVB) CEO, Josefa ‘Jo’ Tuamoto said he was particularly gratified with the marked growth for the destination’s combined visitor arrivals from Asia.

In February Mr Tuamoto led an SIVB to Port Moresby where he held talks with Air Nuigini CEO, Simon Foo to discuss way in which both organisations could collaborate to increase the flow of Asian visitor arrivals via the carrier’s services ex-Bali, Hong Kong, Manila, Singapore and Tokyo into Port Moresby and onwards to Honiara.

“We are still working off quite low numbers but slowly and surely, Asian visitor arrivals are starting to pick up as our reputation particularly as a world-class dive destination in the massive Asian dive community continues to build.”

Solomon Airlines’ Dash 8 resumes service

After a three-month absence, Solomon Airlines' Dash 8 aircraft (H4-SOL) has resumed full operation on the national carrier's domestic services as of Friday, 11 June 2016.

The aircraft, affectionately known as 'Megapode', had been undergoing its heavy C-Check maintenance program under contract with Hawker Pacific based in Cairns, Queensland.

Solomon Airlines General Manager - Operations & Commercial, Gus Kraus said that after close on three months out of operation it was with a great sense of pride that the carrier welcomed the Dash 8 back into service.

"'Megapode' has been sorely missed," Mr Kraus said.

"Solomon Airlines would like to thank our valued travellers and the general public for their patience and understanding during the Dash 8's absence.

"We look forward to the aircraft once again providing a safe and comfortable return to a service that provides a vital air link for the people of the Solomon Islands.

"Naturally much more can be done with this level of commuter aircraft in the Solomon Islands and with government assistance we see much potential in opening up further ports in the Solomon Islands to a Dash 8 service."

These areas Mr Kraus said included Taro, Seghe and Lata.

The airline was also looking at the possibility of providing Dash 8 services to Manaoba and Lomlom subject to those ports being commissioned and operationally approved.

For enquiries or bookings please visit or contact the airline's Travel Centre in Point Cruz, Sales Offices and Sales Agents or call the airline's toll free number on 177.


Thursday, June 9, 2016

First look at new luxury hotel development for Hobart


MACq 01 launches official microsite and the first immersive look at the 114-suite hotel

·       Coming soon: MACq 01 is set to open doors in mid-2017
·       It's BIG: The hotel will boast 114 rooms across several categories – The smallest room is 43m2 and the largest the largest room is huge at 105m2
·       It's luxurious: A 35 million dollar development, the hotel will offer 20 luxury waterfront suites
·       A hotel like no other: Each of the rooms will be linked to an infamous Tasmanian 'character'
·       Take a look at the newly launched site here

Hobart's newest hotel development, MACq 01 has today announced the launch of their immersive microsite.

The latest development from Federal Group - Tourism (Saffire Freycinet, The Henry Jones Art Hotel) is set to open doors in mid-2017 in the heart of the historic Hobart waterfront, MACq 01 will be a luxury hotel combining premium accommodation with an element of unforgettable storytelling. Capturing the essence behind the stories of Tasmania is what the interiors of MACq 01 Hotel are all about. From the 114 Rooms to the reception, restaurant and cocktail bars, there is an underlying emphasis on warmth and a genuine quality. The design is an eclectic mix of elements from the luxurious to the rustic to the unexpected, that play off one another and come together to really capture a feeling.

"There are so many interesting stories that help you get to know the characters that exist in the hotel. As designers, we've created spaces that pick up on the emotion behind the story of Tasmania, and express them in the most delightful and unexpected way" said interior designer Amanda Pike (of Pike Withers Interior Architecture).

Accommodation will be available in a variety of luxurious suites and rooms, along with a restaurant, bar, tastings, cocktail classes, gym, spontaneous entertainment (stay tuned!) and much more. Centrally located, with gorgeous views of River Derwent, MACq 01 will be the perfect place to start exploring the magic and mystery of Tasmania.

Each of the hotel's 114 rooms will be linked to a real Tasmanian character central to the story of our most southern state – heroes, villains, explorers, inventors, convicts, bushrangers, first people, industrial giants, political mavericks and much more – which means everyone who stays at MACq 01 will forge an unforgettable connection with the people and stories of Tasmania.

"With the launch of our microsite, we wanted to create an experience and not just a holding page.  I encourage prospective visitors and guests to jump online and take a look at the site," said Matt Casey, General Manager, Federal Group - Tourism

"People will leave the site with a genuine understanding of what MACq 01 is all about."


Wednesday, June 8, 2016

MTA ‘Bulas’ from Fiji

Pictured MTA- Mobile Travel Agents' Wanita Thompson enjoying a visit to Fiji's idyllic Likuliku Lagoon Resort and its famous overwater bungalows in the Mamanuca Islands.

Wanita visited the land of the Bula Spirit as part of an Island Escapes study tour designed to showcase Fiji's key tourism locations and update agents on the ongoing developments on the resort scene taking place within the destination.

Her seven-day program also included a luxury-oriented overview of properties in Pacific Harbour, the Coral Coast and the main tourism hub of Denarau.



Solomon Airlines resumes full operation of all international and domestic services

Honiara, Solomon Islands – Solomon Airlines will resume full operation of all international and domestic services from tomorrow, Thursday, 09 June 2016.

The airline has advised it will operate one international flight today from Honiara to Brisbane (Wednesday, 09 June 2016) before full international and domestic flights recommence tomorrow.

Today's service will operate as follows:

Wednesday  08 June      -             IE 700/QF 380                     HIR-BNE    1900 / 2115

The airline will also resume all services provided to all other airlines utilising Henderson International Airport in its capacity as ground handling agent.

Captain Sumsum said Solomon Airlines unreservedly apologised for any inconvenience the situation had caused the airline's passengers, its codeshare partners and other international carriers and their passengers.

For further flight updates visit

Passengers seeking additional information may contact Solomon Airlines Australian Office, telephone toll free on 1300 894311 or + 61 3860 5883 or Solomon Islands Travel Centre in Honiara, telephone + 677 20152.


Sydney Airport's First Internationally Branded 5-Star New-Build Hotel, Pullman Sydney Airport, Now Open

Pullman Sydney Airport, the first internationally branded 5-star new-build hotel to service Sydney Airport, is officially open, welcoming its first guests. Pullman Sydney Airport joins Australia's fastest growing 5-star hotel brand, becoming the 15th Pullman property across Australia, and the 700th hotel to join AccorHotels' rapidly expanding network in the Asia Pacific region.

Dubbed as 'Sydney's newest business playground', the 229-room luxury Pullman Sydney Airport is designed by the award-winning WMK Architecture and SODA (Thailand) Architecture + Interiors who have extensive experience in designing Australian and international hotels.

Spanning 12 floors and located on O'Riordan Street, Mascot, the hotel is expected to be popular with international and domestic business and leisure travellers, due to its exclusive 5-star offering and prime location just 600m from Sydney's domestic airport terminal and 3km from the International Airport.

On arrival, guests are greeted with a welcoming and spacious, high-ceiling lobby which merges seamlessly with Mobius Bar & Grill - an open plan kitchen which allows guests to immerse in the theatre of food preparation.

A hallmark of every Pullman hotel, a stylish Executive Club Lounge provides guests with a sophisticated, intimate space to check in, plug in and work remotely, or enjoy some evening canapés and beverages with colleagues. The Executive Club Lounge also caters to those in transit, equipped with shower facilities and TVs projecting flight arrival and departure information.

The hotel features a state-of-the art 24-hour gym, flooded with natural light overlooking a kitchen garden.

Pullman Sydney Airport General Manager, Bernie Boller said, “Since first announcing the hotel 18 months ago, we are delighted to finally open our doors and welcome the hotel's first guests.

"Our ambition is to be known as a welcoming sanctuary for business and leisure guests, away from the hustle and bustle of the airport, a space where travellers can be both productive and relaxed, without being too far from the convenience of a major international transport hub.”

To celebrate the launch, those travelling to Sydney for business or leisure can take advantage of Pullman Sydney Airport's opening special from $229* per night including Wi-Fi.

Pullman Sydney Airport is also a convenient place to do business. The hotel features three meeting and conference rooms that can combine to form a large venue, catering for up to 280 guests, ideal for workshops or showcase events. A private boardroom with video conferencing can be reserved for full scale presentations. All event spaces are equipped with the latest high-tech AV for event organisers to connect with ease.

To book Pullman Sydney Airport's special opening offer, visit

*Terms and conditions apply. Lead in room rate applies in a Superior Room. Book now until 31 June 2016. Valid for travel until 1 December 2016. Subject to availability and excludes special event dates.

Traveloscopy | 

The Expeditionist

The Expeditionist
Venturing to the world's special places