Travel News: Owner of Famed French Hotel may have left it to the Dogs

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Owner Of Famed French Hotel May Have Left It To The Dogs

Uncertainty surrounds the future of one of the most famous grand hotels in Europe after the property’s flamboyant owner and chief executive died at the age of 95 without an heir, amid speculation that she may have left her hotel to animals. Jeanne Augier personally ran the striking pink-domed Negresco Hotel, in the French Riviera city of Nice, for more than 60 years after inheriting it from her father in 1957. She died this week in her 96th year and legal disputes are reportedly already underway about what will happen to the hotel. In 2009, it was reported that Augier planned to leave the hotel and its profits to a new foundation devoted to animals and the poor. A great lover of dogs, she championed both causes, and she was determined to keep the hotel out of the clutches of international hotel chains. Whether dogs will inherit her hotel has not yet been determined. The Negresco opened in 1913 in Nice and quickly became a favorite with European royalty. It has more than 140 rooms, each with its own unique furnishings and French art “collection pieces.” The property has always been open to pets and guests are encouraged to bring them along. Augier famously told Microsoft founder Bill Gates that he was not rich enough to buy her fabulous hotel. In an interview with French newspaper Liberation in 2009, she said: “I must have a hundred offers a year to buy the Negresco. It’s out of the question.”

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Courtesy of Le Negresco

United Airlines Replaces Delta As World’s Second-Largest Carrier

Travelmole reports United Airlines has reclaimed the world’s number-two spot for passenger traffic. It edged in front of Delta thanks to mostly domestic expansion with capacity increases at hubs like Chicago, Houston and Denver. Capacity has been increasing by up to 6%. United recorded 230.2 billion revenue passenger miles last year, ahead of Delta’s 225.2 billion. Delta overtook United as the second largest airline in 2015. United spokeswoman Megan McCarthy said: “Our goal is not to be the biggest. We want to be the best and as we implement our strategy, we are looking to build on this momentum in 2019.” Following a couple of years in the doldrums after several high profile missteps, United’s share price has rebounded. While other major US airline stock values have contracted, United saw a 24% bump last year. American Airlines hasn’t released its full-year traffic results yet but is expected to remain the world’s largest airline.

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New Zealand Tourism App Adds Enhanced Reality

An “augmented reality” (AR) app is giving New Zealand visitors the chance to experience a once-famous geological formation that disappeared over 130 years ago. The Pink and White Terraces were once known as the “eighth wonder of the world” and were obliterated by the Mount Tarawera eruption in 1886. They were located 20 km from Rotorua on the North Island of New Zealand. In the 19th century, intrepid tourists traveled from around the world to visit the terraces, which became the most famous tourist attraction in the country. Visitors would gather on the terrace shores to experience the natural spa and health benefits that continue to be a feature in the Rotorua region. The popularity of the terraces signaled the start of organized tourism in New Zealand. Old reference photos and paintings, plus work by early explorers and scientists, have been used to recreate the terraces in augmented reality. The terraces have been brought to life again with a specially developed app launched as an eco-tourism experience. Visitors can download the free app and experience the recreated terraces on daily cruises across Lake Rotomahana to the place where the terraces once were. Users need only hold up their device to explore the site and discover its hidden secrets. The Pink and White Terraces were formed over thousands of years, as silica-rich water emerging from springs and boiling geysers crystallized into giant tiered staircases. The White Terrace covered more than three hectares while the smaller Pink Terrace was used for bathing on the lower levels.

Hawaii Issues Warning Of High Bacterial Levels At Several Beaches

HawaiiNewsNow reports high bacterial levels were detected Wednesday at several beaches across Oahu, and have even prompted the closure of a popular spot. The state Department of Health Clean Water Branch said inspectors found elevated levels of enterococci at the following beaches: Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve, Ala Moana Regional Park, and two sites at Queen’s Beach in Waikiki. The normal level for enterococci doesn’t surpass 130% per 100 mL. DOH officials issue alerts when levels exceed 130. Due to the elevated levels, a city spokesperson said Hanauma Bay would be closed Thursday. The upper viewing area, parking lot, and visitor center will remain open. Officials say swimming in waters with elevated bacteria counts could make you sick. Children, the elderly, and people with weakened immune systems are most vulnerable. The most common symptoms associated with swimming in affected waters include nausea, vomiting, stomachache, diarrhea, headache or fever. Other minor illnesses include ear, eye, nose and throat infections. But the warning wasn’t enough to keep many beachgoers out of the water here in Waikiki. “The water was nice and clean from what I could see,” said Canadian visitor John Jonker. “We didn’t see any problem in the water at all, and we never noticed anything on the shore either. Everything is nice and clean.” The advisories will remain in effect for the beaches until levels return to normal. In addition, a Brown Water Advisory has been issued for Punaluu Beach Park in Windward O’ahu.

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Turkey Has Introduced A Passenger Security Tax

Travelwirenwews reports Turkey has introduced an airline passenger security tax of 1,5€ applicable as from 1 January 2018 without any advance notification. In addition, the Turkish Tourism Minister is considering changes to the tourism strategy and marketing activities. He wants to cut the state-financed budget for tour operators promoting Turkish destinations and plans a more centralized approach focusing on high-end products.

This App Will Deliver Food Right To Your Boarding Gate

Airwise reports most people-and certainly most underrated comedy writers-agree that airline food is bad. Luckily a food delivery app wants to make sure that you never fly hungry again and won’t be tempted to eat whatever it is the airlines are serving. AtYourGate is a food delivery service that will bring you food while you loom around the boarding gate, even though you’re sitting in Row 44. The delivery team doesn’t have to bring your loaded baked potato through security, though, because for better or worse, the app only lets users choose from options within the airport. To use it, just download the app, browse the options, make your selection, and they will run it over to you, usually within 20-30 minutes. AtYourGate has just announced it is landing in the New York area, making it easier for passengers flying through Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia, and Terminal 7 of John F. Kennedy International to decide whether it’s worth paying someone to bring them an Auntie Anne’s pretzel. (New York and New Jersey airport travelers who download the app qualify for free delivery on their first purchase by entering the promotion code AYGFREE. There is no minimum order requirement.) The app is still pretty new, with only New York City, San Diego, and Minneapolis St. Paul airports on board, but if it rolls out nationwide, those traveling through Portland International Airport (hello, Country Cat) or O’Hare (where Rick Bayless has a torta restaurant) may never eat airplane food again.

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A Foodie’s Guide to Greece

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We get it—after all these months of snow and rain, you need a little pick me up.

You need to get the kids out of the house.

You need sun. You need fresh air. Most of all, you need fresh food that will knock your socks off.

Greek food is prized for being soaked in sunlight: think green olives, soft cheeses, lemon, roasted meats and exceptional seafood.

But did you know that Greek food varies widely from region to region?

It’s not all just feta cheese and kalamata olives and olive oil, you know! (Ok, we’re kidding with the olive oil part. Greece = olive oil, what can we say.)

The cool thing about these regional variants is that based on your taste preferences, you can check out a different region of Greece.

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The Aegean Islands

The Aegean islands are known for a rougher terrain than found elsewhere in Greece. Ingredients are simple and limited, grapes, grains, and olives of course. Fish plays a huge role in some islands, whereas others, like Sifnos and Rhodes, have a special attachment to the humble chickpea. Santorini is all about their yellow split pea. You will find salt-cured or wine-soaked charcuterie. In parts of the Dodecanese Islands, look to the seawater shellfish.

The Ionian Islands

These are the more experimental islands, drawing on Italian influences in dishes such as the rosemary and vinegar sauce used in seafood specialties. Look for trademark kumquat liqueur and homemade ginger beer. But it’s the desserts here that are the real stars of the show—pantespani, a syrup-soaked sponge cake, nougat and sesame and honey bars.

Crete

No island is quite like Crete—a massive stretch of land, home to one of the oldest civilizations ever in Greece. They’ve had time to perfect their specialties! Here you’ll find pilaf rice mixed with chicken or beef, fresh salads, and roasted baby goat. Don’t miss out on dakos, barley biscuits prepared with fresh tomato, feta (or mizithra) and olive oil.

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Dodecanese

Though in many ways a blend of Aegean and Cretan, the flavors of the Dodecanese stand out thanks to a delicious abundance of spices. Cumin yes, sesame seeds, and the oh so lovely tahini. They consume large amounts of sun-dried fish, sometimes served with its own intestines! Dried octopus, octopus roe, dried eggs are more delicacies that are a bit unusual. Truthfully, if you’re a curious traveler and want to taste seafood you’ll find nowhere else, head down to the Dodecanese.

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Mainland Greece

The mainland has perfected all sorts of pastry pies, whether savory cooked with veggies and meats, or sweet with milk, rice, cinnamon or yoghurt. Wash these dishes down with a glass of ouzo and you’ll find yourself “When in Rome”-ing before long!

Don’t wait – book your sun-filled vacation now! WIT Travel Agent can tailor an amazing trip for you and yours in the Greek Isles. Call 503-224-0180 or email inquiry@wittravel.com. 

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The Government Shutdown is now affecting your airport travel

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The Government shutdown is beginning to bite the world of travel.

TSA screeners are now calling in sick with much more regularity.

At least three airports–Miami, Houston/Intercontinental and Washington/Dulles–are closing some TSA checkpoints and redirecting passengers.
– Miami: afternoon closures on Concourse G.
– Houston: Terminal B closures.
– Dulles: West Mezzanine closures.

It’s to be expected that more closures are to follow in the next days or weeks–without advance notice.

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Lines are also beginning to lengthen substantially. At Atlanta Hartsfield this morning, for example, checkpoint lines have exceeded one hour and photos posted by travelers show lines backing up into the baggage claim areas.

What can you do?

Expect the unexpected. That means showing up earlier for flights, leaving more time between connecting flights that require a second passage through security and leaving much more time after your arrival on an international flight.

And don’t forget… TSA agents are people too

Finally, please remember that checkpoint agents and customs officials aren’t receiving any compensation right now. So have a little consideration. Don’t get angry or impatient. Be polite. Say thanks. Wish them well.

If you see someplace to chip into food banks or other services that help the agents get through, feel free to make a donation. But do not try to tip or otherwise pay a TSA or Customs agent directly. They are barred by law from accepting remuneration of any kind.

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Top Posts of 2018

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Another Year has come to a close, so for today we’re bringing you the WIT Blog’s Top Posts for 2018. 

It’s been a doozy of a year – January 2018 was our top month on the blog ever! Take a look and get inspired for your own upcoming adventures in 2019!

Posts that Played the Most

Where to Spot the Southern Cross: Letting the constellations guide your travel this year?

2018 Travel Trends from our Travel Agents: See if our predictions were right!

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Embark on an Incredible Voyage on the West Coast of South America: an older post from 2015, check out similar itineraries with G Adventures

A Drive through Snaefellsnes Peninsula in Iceland: seabirds, basalt cliffs, mountain peaks, waterfalls, oh my!

Questions to Ask before you Book an All-Inclusive Resort: The Whats, Wheres and What ifs

Itinerary: 13 days on South Island, New Zealand: How would you spend your two precious weeks in New Zealand?

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A Closer Look: Ithumba Safari Camp in Kenya: Explore one of our favorite camps in beautiful East Africa

2018 Travel Trends: Walking Tours in and out of Town: Tours we recommend on the cobblestone and the trail

6 Hacks to Get Your Luggage through the Airport: A must-read for your sanity!

Where are you going in 2019? Let us know! Leave a comment or email us at inquiry@wittravel.com.

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Travel News: Admission Charge doubles for foreigners at Chichén Itzá

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Admission Charge Doubles For Foreign Tourists At Chichén Itzá 

Authorities in Yucatán doubled the admission fee for the Mayan city of Chichén Itzá from 242 to 480 pesos (US $12 to $24) effective January 2, drawing criticism from the tourism sector. Several state tourism and hotel associations warned in a letter to lawmakers that the new fee will cause financial losses for tourist service providers and a drop in the number of visitors to the state. The president of Cetur, the Tourist Business Council of Yucatán, asserted that 90% of tourists visiting Chichén Itzá are foreigners, and that 90% of them travel from the neighboring state of Quintana Roo, meaning that the new fee will negatively impact the tourist industry in both states. Jaime Solís Garza, president of the Tourism Business Council of Yucatan, warned that if the new fee is not rolled back tourist service providers will take their clients to the archaeological site at Tulum, where the price of a ticket is 75 pesos (US $3.80). 

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Verona, an alternative to Venice just an hour away 

Venice Plans To Tax Day-Trippers In Effort To Curb Tourism

Travelwirenews reports a controversial new proposal aims to stop overcrowding in the Italian city of Venice, one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations. To deal with the approximately 30 million visitors it sees every year, the city is planning to start charging many tourists an entrance fee. Locals say that Venice has become a Disneyland for tourists, and the city’s future is at stake reports. Hoards pack its narrow alleys searching for that all-important selfie, but the vast majority, about four-fifths of visitors. do not spend the night, meaning the city loses out on potential earnings from hotel taxes. Now, Italy’s parliament has approved a measure that’ll allow the city to charge tourists who only come for the day up to 10 euros, the U.S. equivalent of about $11.50. The money would go toward keeping the city clean, Mayor Luigi Brugnaro said, and allow locals to live with more decorum. Venetians have told us they’re concerned the daily deluge of visitors is not only straining the city’s resources and delicate architecture but causing Venice to lose its soul. Since 1951, the city’s population has plummeted to fewer than 55,000 people but it can see, on average, more than 80,000 visitors per day. 

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United Airlines Publishes A Cookbook For Its Airline Food 

Detroit Free Press reports airline food doesn’t have to stay on the plane: Business-class meals can now be made at home with the new United Polaris cookbook. This isn’t the peanuts and pretzels served in coach. United Airlines shared an image of the cookbook featuring a recipe for “coconut soup with sambal oelek chicken” with the Free Press. According to the United Airlines shop, the $29.99 cookbook features over 40 recipes from United’s executive chefs and chefs from The Trotter Project, which works to aid young chefs in the culinary and hospitality fields. On its website, United said it’s “excited to be the official airline of The Trotter Project,” bringing gourmet options for United Polaris business class passengers and premium transcontinental service flyers, plus new dishes for international economy dining. “A portion of proceeds (for the cookbook) will be donated to The Trotter Project to continue its mission of inspiring the next generation of culinary professionals,” a United spokesperson said Monday. As Travel + Leisure notes, other airlines have also ventured into cookbooks: Southwest Airlines published “Feel the Spirit, Savor the Fare” in 2006 and Delta put out a book of recipes compiled by flight attendants called “First-Class Meals” back in 1987.

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Gatwick, Heathrow Airports Order Military-Grade Anti-Drone Equipment

Reuters reports London’s Gatwick and Heathrow airports have ordered military-grade anti-drone defenses worth “several million pounds” after drones caused three days of disruption at Gatwick last month. Transport Minister Chris Grayling met police, aviation and defense chiefs on Thursday to discuss the issue, The airports did not immediately comment on the report. Drone sightings caused chaos at Gatwick, Britain’s second busiest airport, last month, disrupting the travel plans of tens of thousands of people in the run up to Christmas. The incident revealed a vulnerability that is being scrutinized by security forces and airport operators worldwide. The military was drafted in to deploy specialist equipment, enabling authorities to reassure the airport that it was safe for planes to take off and land. The technology included the Israeli-designed Drone Dome system, The Times reported. Security minister Ben Wallace said last month Britain’s security forces had detection systems that could be deployed throughout the country to combat the threat of drones. Media reports suggested that the defense ministry had since removed its anti-drone hardware from Gatwick. 

 

 

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Our WIT Agents Pick Top Destinations you should keep your eye on in 2019

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Happy New Year Everyone! We at Willamette Intl Travel had a fantastic 2018, and we’re excited to see what our 42nd year in business will have in store for us and our clients!

We’ve taken a survey among our agents of which of the best value destinations you should be keeping your eye on for the coming year. These are the big-bangs-for-your-buck, those locations that aren’t quite done-to-death, emerging or getting a whole new revisioning this 2019.

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1. ANTARCTICA

Interest in Antarctica has been high – one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences that no traveler should miss. If you want breathtaking ices capes, awe-inspiring icebergs and penguins, Antarctica in December-March has never been more ideal.

Read all about cruises in Antarctica: https://wittravel.net/2012/12/28/cruise-to-antarctica/

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2. SRI LANKA

Thanks to a European resurgence and Lonely Planet stamping it with a 2019 approval, interest in this island jewel has never been more abundant. Though no longer as cheap as it was perhaps three years ago, it still offers great value and unique experiences. Wildlife, temple ruins, beautiful tropics, Buddha and Hindu influences, deep history and religious diversity—it makes for an ideal destination. Be sure to book in advance as it can be difficult to find space during the peak season.

Read where to eat in Sri Lanka by Parts Unknown: https://explorepartsunknown.com/sri-lanka/eat-like-bourdain-5/

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3. PORTUGAL

A discovered destination for a couple years now, Portugal is still thankfully inexpensive—so go this year before it becomes more expensive and overcrowded. Why it’s remained a secret for so long we have no idea—go for the cuisine, stunning architecture, rich diverse history and surf-worthy beaches.

Read our 7 reasons why Portugal is Awesome

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4. CHURCHILL, CANADA

Polar bears are IN this year—which means a flight to the Canada tundra or an iconic train ride. Churchill is one of the few human settlements where polar bears can be observed in the wild. Prime viewing times are October and November, during the annual migration to seal territory.

Read more about traversing Canada by Train

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5. EGYPT

After a long period of civil strife and upheaval, Egypt is once again back on the traveler’s map. Drawing new attention due to historic preservation efforts, this is one country that won’t be leaving the bucket list any time soon.

Read more about the 7 Best Countries for History Buffs (including Egypt)

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6. KENYA/TANZANIA

With WIT Owners Christina and John leading annual safaris in Kenya and Tanzania, Eastern Africa is more popular than ever. Let our African experts determine best time of year to visit for best game view and weather. But book quickly! August to October 2019 are almost sold out in many safari accommodations.

Read more about Kenya & Tanzania

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7. JORDAN

Jordan has always been the classic Middle Eastern country to visit, and is a must add-on to Egypt. There are few places as iconic as Jordan, with its ancient sites and iconic desert sands. The site of Petra alone is worth its 2-day visit, and there are few memories as treasured as 2 nights in a desert camp in Wadi Rum.  

Check out a sample itinerary in Jordan.

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8. MALAYSIA

Malaysia may be still an obscure destination for Americans, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth a visit in 2019. The country has a diverse wealth of cultures, ancient and modern influences, beautiful national parks and sanctuaries, highlands and beaches, laid-back historic colonial towns and good tourist infrastructure. It’s also a breeze to combine with Thailand, Laos, Singapore, Vietnam or Cambodia.

Check out why Malaysia is worth your while. 

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BONUS: UNITED KINGDOM

With Brexit looming, the British Pound could be seeing a dramatic drop in exchange rate. Making the UK simply a bargain in 2019. Definitely the year to take that family trip to Oxford you’ve been saving up for.

Read up on London Walking Tours with Context Travel. 

Here’s to many more amazing adventures in your future 2019!

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Travel News: Delta Airlines To Change The Way You Board Planes 

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Silver Wind To Get Ice Class, Expedition Overhaul In 2020 Refurb

Cruise Industry News reports Silversea Cruises announced plans for a second extensive refurbishment of Silver Wind, which will see the ship pick up ice-class certification as well as a number of expedition cruising additions. The drydock is scheduled for August 2020 and will span two months, according to a statement, and falls under the company’s Project Invictus program. A fleet of Zodiacs and kayaks for on-water exploration will be added as well as an upgraded theater. All suites will undergo another full upgrade; the Spa & Salon will each be completely refurbished; the Reception/Atrium will be overhauled; and additional improvements will be made to La Dame, La Terrazza, the Main Bar, the Observation Lounge, the Panorama Lounge, the Pool Bar, public bathrooms, and the Theatre, among other spaces. Accommodating fewer guests (just 254) and retaining her characteristic sense of small-ship intimacy, the Silver Wind will offer higher space ratios, a higher crew-to-guest ratio, and more upper suites, among other enhancements. Following her drydock period, Silversea plans to deploy the ship on both traditional itineraries and to expedition destinations, including the Arctic and Antarctica. The ship will resume service on November 10, 2020, embarking on her inaugural season in Antarctica.

Delta Airlines To Change The Way You Board Planes 

Global news reports Delta Airlines is ditching the zone boarding process and will determine the order in which passengers board an airplane by which “branded fares” they pay for. The airline made the announcement in a statement last week, saying the zones “will soon be a thing of the past.” Delta operates flights to and from Canada, and Canadians might fly on a Delta flight due to its partnership with WestJet. The way zone boarding works is by letting on people who are sitting at the back of the plane first, with the exception of people who need extra time (like those with small children) and business and executive class passengers, who get on the plane first. Starting Jan. 23, 2019, there will be eight color-coded brands, prioritizing those who have paid more for their seats, and still “prioritizing customer loyalty.” The codes and their order of priority will be shown when people purchase their tickets. The airline says people who need help or more time to board will still board first. Other than that, the first brand is the high-priced Delta One, and the last is Delta’s cheapest ticket, the basic economy fare. The change is the latest attempt for airlines to minimize boarding times. United Airlines switched to a two-lane system, hoping to minimize people crowding around the gate at boarding time. The changes come as airlines are under scrutiny over the way passengers are treated, the legroom between seats is shrinking and passengers are increasingly paying for things that were once included for free, like carry-on bags.

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Sweden’s Ice Hotel Now Open

CNN reports as the annual Arctic deep freeze gets underway, Sweden’s ICEHOTEL is opening its frosty doors. And this year its icy rooms are as beautiful as ever. The famous hotel regenerates every year, and for 2018/19 some 15 new suites have been created by 34 artists and designers from across 13 countries.

But in a tradition spanning almost 30 years, part of the hotel remains transitory, each year when the old ice melts, new applications come forward and a panel of artists and ice experts choose the best of the best. The winners travel to Sweden to help make their frozen visions a reality, aided by experienced ice artists. Many of this year’s suites are inspired by the natural world. ICEHOTEL’s DNA is intertwined with its picturesque surroundings, the ice is sourced from the nearby Torne River, Sweden’s northernmost and the biggest national river. Another is The Living Ocean Suite,” by Jonathan Green and his daughter Marnie from England. It’s an icy underwater haven complete with coral and fish. “The suite is inspired by the climate changes and the overfishing that affects our oceans. “I also thought the idea of using frozen water from a river in northern Sweden to create an ocean with shells, fish, and corals is exciting.” Other designs are more mythical. A team from Sweden, Spain and Slovakia designed “Haven,” a supposed magical ice portal attended by imposing creatures.

“We are inspired by the meeting of people and want to create an experience that invites curiosity, creativity, and collaboration,” says one of Haven’s designers, Jonas Johannson. The sparkly ice in the hotel is illuminated by specifically curated light design, adding an otherworldly air to the hotel’s cool interiors. Sweden’s ICEHOTEL is made solely out of snow and ice and will use sustainable architecture to stay open during summer months. Roughly 70,000 guests a year visit ICEHOTEL, where a survival course is offered to help guests adapt to their frozen surroundings. Plus there are warm cabins on offer, so guests can switch between staying in the cold rooms and sleeping in the warmth they might be more accustomed to. The current edition of ICEHOTEL is open now until April 13 2019. Prices for two adults start at SEK 1,549 ($170) for a warm room and SEK 2,354 ($260) for an ice room.

5.1 Earthquake Strikes Sicilian City Of Catania

Following the recent eruption of Mt. Etna, an earthquake caused damage and injuries in eastern Sicily, Italy, during the early morning hours Wednesday. The earthquake was registered as a magnitude 5.1 by the United States Geological Survey (USGS). Italy’s national seismology institute recorded the quake with a magnitude of 4.8. The earthquake occurred at 3:19 a.m. Wednesday local time (9:19 p.m. EST, Tuesday) The epicenter was just north of Catania. No damage or injuries were reported in Catania, according to the Associated Press (AP). Minor injuries and some damage to buildings occurred in other communities of eastern Sicily. At least 10 people were injured, the AP stated. About 18 other people went to local hospitals for panic attacks or shock.
Satellite images from Wednesday afternoon indicate that steam continues to stream away from Mt. Etna. No travel advisories are currently in place by the Toulouse Volcanic Ash Advisory Center. If ash is emitted at anytime through at least Saturday, flights to and from Catania can be affected due to the expected wind direction.

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Cruise Industry Commits To 40% Carbon Emission Reduction By 2030 

The Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) has announced a global cruise industry commitment to reduce the rate of carbon emissions across the industry fleet by 40% by 2030. “The announcement is a tribute to cross-industry collaboration and a shared commitment to environmental sustainability,” said Arnold Donald, Global CLIA Chairman and President & CEO of Carnival Corporation & PLC. “We aspire to the International Maritime Organization’s vision of a carbon-free shipping industry by the end of the century. Our commitment to a 40% reduction in the rate of emissions by 2030 is a strong first step toward realizing that vision.” CLIA says the commitment is the outcome of a collaborative process designed to build consensus among cruise line leadership. Progress toward the 40% target will be measured against a 2008 fleet baseline, and emissions rates will be calculated based on the industry fleet’s total carbon emissions, total ship berths and total distance travelled. CLIA plans to report annually on the industry’s progress toward the commitment. The reduction will be fueled by innovative technologies for energy efficiency in ship design and propulsion, CLIA says. The industry’s first liquefied natural gas (LNG)-powered ship launched just last week, and some 25 such ships could be operating by 2025. While LNG ships principally address pollution, there is a corresponding benefit for carbon emissions reduction.

Norwegian Air Maneuvers To Avoid Collapse

Several days ago there were questions about Norwegian Air’s ability to survive into the New Year. A report from a Danish bank suggested they could breach financing covenants which could have led to the unraveling of the low cost carrier that has been driving down transatlantic airfares and that is active in Europe. The carrier though has announced several moves that they say should shore up their balance sheet. Whether these are enough depends on a variety of factors such as the cost of fuel and demand during the winter dip in travel. $230 million (annualized) cost savings program. Meanwhile the airline faces heavy debt, high costs of fuel hedging in the face of falling oil, and weak seasonal demand on top of questions over whether its business model is sustainable over the long term.

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