Hurtigruten’s Finnmarken To Be Transformed Into Premium Expedition Ship
Seatrade reports Finnmarkens new Science Center will be packed with the latest technology and high-tech gadgets. After the most extensive upgrade in Hurtigruten’s 125-year history, Finnmarken will reemerge as a premium expedition cruise ship. From 2021, the fully refurbished Finnmarken will explore handpicked destinations along the rugged Norwegian coastline on year-round expedition cruises. Already from 2020, travelers on Hurtigruten’s original Norwegian coastal voyage will get the opportunity to experience a new Finnmarken. Low emission engines, shore power and battery pack capability. ‘We will transform her into a full-fledged premium expedition cruise ship, with all the comforts, facilities and expertise you need for creating a perfect adventure,’ Hurtigruten CEO Daniel Skjeldam said. The keel-to-mast upgrade will bring several new features. Some of the highlights include substantially upgraded, low-emission engines, complying with all known and upcoming regulations (Tier III), installation of shore power connectivity and preparation for future battery pack installation. All cabins and suites will be fully refurbished. Using natural Scandinavian materials such as granite, oak, birch and wool, this will create a relaxed and stylish look and feel, and add to the premium on-board experience. On Deck 8 aft, in the current gym and sauna area, five roomy suites with large panoramic windows will be added. Four new restaurants will be installed. These include Hurtigruten’s new expedition cruise main restaurant, Aune. Social and and informal, with the use of natural elements in design and interiors, Restaurant Aune will serve breakfast, lunch and dinner featuring Scandinavian dishes. Restaurant Lindstrøm, a specialty restaurant named after the favorite chef of the Norwegian polar heroes, will provide fine dining with strong roots in traditional Norwegian cooking that are contrasted with modern cuisine. The informal eatery Fredheim, named after a legendary 1920s hunting station in Svalbard that sheltered adventurers from around the world, will be added on Deck 7. In addition, Deck 8 will gain a new grill venue. In other changes, Hurtigruten’s signature Science Center will be found on Deck 4. Packed with the latest technology and high-tech gadgets such as touch screens, science equipment and other interactive features, this edutainment area will also be the on-board headquarters of the ship’s expedition team. A new, larger wellness area will be added on Deck 7, and includes a lounge, treatment rooms, gym and panoramic sauna. The outdoor pool area will be fully refurbished, the shop expanded, and Finnmarken’s car deck will be replaced by a launching area for exploration boats and other expedition equipment. The ship’s extensive art collection will be preserved during the refurbishment, which will take place in the first quarter of 2020.
Cambodia Bans Food Inside Angkor Complex
Travelwirenews reports t he Apsara Authority is trying to reduce littering at the World Heritage site in Siem Reap province of Cambodia. The Cambodian tourism authority has banned visitors from eating food in the World Heritage temple complex in Siem Reap. Hang Pov, Apsara Authority director, said in a letter dated Thursday that the authority wished to remind relevant parties that the Angkor area is a World Heritage Site with many famous temples, especially Angkor Wat, and that eating food in the complex is now banned. “In order to preserve the precious Khmer legacy and to maintain public order and good sanitation, we ban all food, especially packed meals brought in during sunrise or sunset visits, in the temple complex,” the Khmer Times on Monday quoted him as saying. He added that tour operators, tourist associations as well as guides have to advice their guests not eat meals in the temple complex. Nuon Mony, the Siem Reap provincial environment department director, on Sunday said that the ban will help to keep the Angkor site environment clean. “Leftover food and discarded packages litter the temple complex and it affects the environment at Angkor,” he said. “The authority is taking action as part of efforts to protect the environment at the Angkor complex and keep its surroundings clean.” Mony added that tourists should find appropriate places to eat instead of in the complex. Sou Malin, a Siem Reap city resident, on Sunday said that residents support the ban. “Some people do not clean up after they eat and they litter the area, which affects the environment,” she said. In October 2017, Apsara Authority banned food vendors from setting up stalls in front of Angkor Wat. The Angkor Archaeological Park, which includes the famed Unesco-listed Angkor temples, generated US$116.6 million in income from entry tickets last year, an 8% increase compared with the year before.
The World’s Longest-Running Airlines
CNN reports KLM: The flag carrier airline of the Netherlands turns 100 in October this year, making it the oldest airline still in operation. October 2019 will mark the 100-year anniversary of Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands granting the “royal” title to a small, pioneering airline that was due to be founded. The Koninklijke Luchtvaart Maatschappij, more commonly known by its initials KLM, grew to become one of the largest airlines in Europe, as well as one of the most iconic brands in the aviation industry. A crown features prominently in its livery, but perhaps the crown this airline carries with the most pride is that of being the oldest airline in the world today. Surprisingly for an industry known for its volatility and financial instability, quite a few airlines from those heroic early years of aviation are still surviving in their original form. Here are 10 of the oldest airlines in the world still in operation:
- KLM turns 100 this year, making it the oldest airline still in operation.
- Avianca the national airline of Colombia since 1919.
Qantas Year of foundation: 1920. Passengers transported in 2018: 55.3 million. Few people outside of Australia know that Qantas stands for “Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services.” Its first aircraft was an Avro 504, a pre-World War I biplane that could seat a pilot and one passenger.
Aeroflot; Aeroflot was the largest airline in the world during the Soviet era. Year of foundation: 1923. First flight: July 1923. Passengers transported in 2018: 55.7 million.
Czech Airlines (CSA) Czech Airlines, the national airline of the Czech Republic. Year of foundation: 1923. First flight: October 1923 Passengers transported in 2018: 2.9 million.
Finnair; The Finnish government has a 55.8% holding of Finnair. Year of foundation: 1923. First flight: March 1924. Passengers transported in 2017: 13.2 million.
Delta Air Lines; Delta is the oldest airline still operating in the US. Year of foundation: 1924. Passengers transported in 2018: 192.5 million. Delta has grown from a small crop-dusting operation in America’s Deep South to the largest airline in the world by some measures.
Tajik Air (until January 2019). Year of foundation: 1924. Passengers transported in 2017: 356,000.
Air Serbia; Year of foundation: 1927. Passengers transported in 2017: 2.62 million. 10. Iberia; Year of foundation: 1927. First flight: December 1927. Passengers transported in 2017: 54.9 million
Waikiki Unveils New Measures To Reduce Crime
Travelmole reports that Waikiki has been plagued by a spike in petty crime, and is fighting back. It announced a new crime-fighting plan to ensure ‘visitors always feel comfortable,’ said Mayor Kirk Caldwell. The wide-ranging plan will include the installation of dozens of new surveillance cameras which will be paid for by the Hawaii Tourism Authority. Bike patrols will be increased and it will enforce a late night curfew for unaccompanied children under the age of 16. Waikiki may also impose a moratorium on late-night cabaret liquor licenses. It will also remove benches and walls where ‘bad elements’ are known to congregate at night. There has been a spate of robberies where visiting tourists seem to have been targeted close to hotels. “Waikiki is one of the safest visitor destinations in the entire world, and we want to make sure our visitors always feel comfortable in this very special place,” Caldwell said.