Tauck launches 2018 Bridges family trips with airfare deals for kids

first_img Travelweek Group Share Tauck launches 2018 Bridges family trips with airfare deals for kids Monday, November 13, 2017 Tags: Promotions, Tauckcenter_img WILTON, CT — Tauck has released its new ‘Just For Kids’ print brochure, teaming up with airline partners to trim 50% off the cost of Europe flights for travellers ages 12 and under.Tauck’s new 56-page Just for Kids brochure is designed and written to appeal specifically to younger travellers, says the company, with bright graphics, bold layout, casual fonts and fun text.Tauck’s Bridges journeys are organized in the brochure by interest, rather than by geography, into three categories: ‘Animal Encounters’ (itineraries in Africa, Latin America and Alaska where wildlife features prominently), ‘Natural Wonders’ (outdoor landscapes and adventures), and ‘Landmark Sites’ (journeys to cultural icons in Europe).The brochure also contains a Q&A interview with a young traveller who has been on three Bridges journeys (to Europe, Costa Rica and the American Southwest) and brief profiles on several of the Tauck tour guides who lead Bridges trips.The company pioneered the idea of a kids-only brochure last year, introducing it initially as a digital publication.More news:  Windstar celebrates record-breaking bookings in JulyTo coincide with the brochure launch Tauck is offering 50% off the price of economy-class airfare to Europe for children age 12 and under. To qualify, children must be 12 or younger at the time of travel, and flights must be booked in conjunction with a Tauck Bridges European land journey or river cruise.“We’re thrilled to be working with our airline partners to reduce the cost of children’s flights to Europe,” said Tauck CEO Dan Mahar. “We know from our guests that high airfares to Europe can be a real obstacle for families, and our Bridges trips – in fact, all of Tauck’s journeys – are about making it easy and hassle-free for guests to enjoy enriching and memorable travel experiences. Making airfares to Europe more affordable is just another way we can facilitate those kinds of meaningful travel experiences for our guests.”In all Tauck will offer 19 Bridges journeys in 2018, to Europe, North America, Latin America and Africa. Ten Bridges trips – six land tours plus river cruises on the Danube, Rhine, Rhone and Seine – are eligible for the reduced airfares.More news:  Canada raises travel warning amid escalating protests in Hong KongTo qualify for the lower fares, bookings must be made and deposited by Dec. 29, 2017. Fares are subject to availability, and other terms and conditions apply. Posted by << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

Militants assault worshippers in Egypts deadliest attack on civilians

first_imgTags: Egypt, Travel Alert EL-ARISH, Egypt — Militants attacked a crowded mosque during Friday prayers in the Sinai Peninsula, setting off explosives, spraying worshippers with gunfire and killing at least 200 people in the deadliest ever attack on Egyptian civilians by Islamic extremists.The attack targeted a mosque frequented by Sufis, members of Islam’s mystical movement, in the north Sinai town of Bir al-Abd. Islamic militants, including the local affiliate of the Islamic State group, consider Sufis heretics because of their less literal interpretations of the faith.The IS affiliate has been waging a stepped-up campaign of violence in northern Sinai for years and has claimed deadly bombings on churches in the capital, Cairo, and other cities, killing dozens of Christians. It also is believed to have been behind the 2016 downing of a Russian passenger jet that killed 226.But this was the first major militant attack on a Muslim mosque and the startling bloodshed eclipsed any past attacks of its kind, even dating back to a previous Islamic militant insurgency in the 1990s.The militants opened fire from four off-road vehicles on worshippers inside the mosque during the sermon, blocking off escape routes from the area by blowing up cars and leaving the burning wrecks blocking the roads, three police officers on the scene said.Victims including some 130 wounded were rushed to local hospitals, they added, speaking on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to brief reporters.No one claimed responsibility immediately following the attack, but IS has targeted Sufis several times in the area in the past, notably beheading a leading Sufi religious figure, the blind sheikh Suleiman Abu Heraz, last year and posting photos of the killing online.More news:  Can you guess the top Instagrammed wedding locations in the world?Images circulating on social media showed dozens of bloodied bodies wrapped up in sheets laid across the mosque floor, while others revealed dozens of relatives queuing up outside the hospital as ambulances raced back and forth.Resident Ashraf el-Hefny said many of the victims were workers at a nearby salt firm who had come for Friday services at the mosque, which had contained some 300 worshipers.“Local people brought the wounded to hospital on their own cars and trucks,” he said by telephone.Egypt’s state news agency reported the casualty toll, citing “official sources,” revising it upward several times following the officials’ initial reports.MENA reported that Egypt’s presidency declared a three-day mourning period, as President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi convened a high-level meeting of security officials.Egyptian president Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi has condemned the extremist attack on a mosque in the troubled Sinai Peninsula, calling it “criminal” and “cowardly” and expressing condolences to the victims and their families.In a statement after the meeting, el-Sissi said the attack “will not go unpunished” and that Egypt will persevere with its war on terrorism. The suffering of the victims was not in vain, he added, and will only “add to our insistence” to combat extremists. Addressing the nation later on television, he repeated his view that Egypt was fighting a battle for the rest of the world.More news:  Beep, beep! Transat hits the streets with Cubamania truckCairo’s international airport boosted security following the attack, with more troopers and forces seen patrolling passenger halls, conducting searches and manning checkpoints at airport approaches.State condolences poured in for Egypt, including messages from Israel, the United Arab Emirates, the U.S., Russia, France and Britain condemning the violence.President Donald Trump denounced what he called a “horrible and cowardly terrorist attack on innocent and defenceless worshippers in Egypt.”“The world cannot tolerate terrorism” he said on Twitter, “we must defeat them militarily and discredit the extremist ideology that forms the basis of their existence!”Security forces have been battling militants in northern Sinai for years, but attacks to date have focused on military and police assets, although assassinations of individuals IS considers government spies or religious heretics are not uncommon.Hundreds of soldiers and militants have been killed in the conflict, although exact numbers are unclear as journalists and independent investigators are banned from the area.Egypt is also facing a growing number of attacks by militants in its Western Desert, including an attack last month that killed 16 police, according to an official tally issued by the Interior Ministry. Security officials have told journalists that dozens more, including high-ranking counterterrorism officers, perished in the Oct. 20 attack some 135 kilometres (84 miles) southwest of the capital, Cairo. By: Ashraf Sweilam and Brian RohanSource: The Associated Press Friday, November 24, 2017 Share Militants assault worshippers in Egypt’s deadliest attack on civilians << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

Virtuoso predicts top 20 travel destinations for luxury travellers this summer

first_img Tuesday, April 24, 2018 Tags: Virtuoso Virtuoso predicts top 20 travel destinations for luxury travellers this summer Posted by Travelweek Group center_img Share << Previous PostNext Post >> NEW YORK — After analyzing its data warehouse of $40.7 billion in transactions, Virtuoso has released its list of top destinations for upscale travellers this summer, including the fastest-growing places of interest.While European countries continue to attract the most visitors, the ranking of the hottest locales displays surprising diversity, with comeback destinations making a huge impact.Here are the top 10 most popular destinations for summer vacations based on future bookings:1. United Kingdom2. Italy3. Canada4. France5. South Africa6. Greece7. Germany8. Netherlands9. Ireland10. SpainEurope remains eternally popular for summer travel, with eight countries cracking the top 10. The boom in river cruising has boosted the popularity of countries like Germany. Canada also finishes strong thanks to its vibrant cities and close proximity to the U.S.Meanwhile, the countries that have seen the largest percentage of growth in year-over-year bookings are:More news:  Direct Travel names Smith as Senior VP, Leisure Marketing, North America1. Greece2. Poland3. Dominican Republic4. New Zealand5. Zambia6. Morocco7. Turks and Caicos8. Saint Lucia9. Vietnam10. EgyptEmerging from its financial upheaval, Greece is this summer’s fastest-growing destination due to pent-up demand. Poland, a gem of Eastern Europe, is also seeing luxury traveller growth, while adventurers are turning to less touristy destinations like Zambia, which boasts varied experiences alongside new luxury infrastructure. In the Caribbean, rising in the ranks are D.R., Turks and Caicos and Saint Lucia, all of which had minimal to no impact from the September 2017 hurricanes.last_img read more

Win a free cruise with TravelBrands NCL

first_imgWin a free cruise with TravelBrands, NCL << Previous PostNext Post >> Share Tuesday, May 15, 2018 Travelweek Group center_img MISSISSAUGA — A new contest from TravelBrands Cruises by Encore Cruises and NCL gives agents the chance to win prizes based on bookings made May 14 – 25.Prizing includes a free seven-night cruise for two aboard Norwegian Bliss and multiple sets of $50 in Loyalty Rewards points. To participate in the contest, agents will receive one ballot for every NCL booking made by phone and two ballots for every booking made online during the contest period.Members of the ‘Your TravelBrands BDM’ Facebook group will earn double ballots. Agents who answer Norwegian trivia questions on the ‘Your TravelBrands BDM’ Facebook group throughout the contest will receive one extra ballot for participating.Trivia questions will be asked by TravelBrands and Norwegian employees, including Frank DeMarinis, President & CEO of TravelBrands. A few lucky agents will receive $50 worth of TravelBrands Loyalty Rewards Points. The TravelBrands Loyalty Rewards program allows agents to collect points and redeem them for a multitude of rewards.More news:  Visit Orlando unveils new travel trade tools & agent perksTravelBrands is also offering a consumer incentive when booking an NCL cruise. Clients booking any 2018 seven-night+ sailing in a balcony stateroom or above will receive free chocolate dipped strawberries which will be delivered to their stateroom during the sailing.Travel agent partners can join the TravelBrands Facebook group to take part in this interactive contest (search ‘Your TravelBrands BDM’ on Facebook). Travel agents can also visit www.travelbrandsaccess.com to learn more about the giveaway and to make their bookings. Tags: Contest, Encore Cruises, Facebook, NCL, TravelBrands Posted bylast_img read more

50 off CTC CTIE certification with The Travel Institute

first_img Monday, June 25, 2018 Posted by 50% off CTC, CTIE certification with The Travel Institute Travelweek Group Tags: CTA, CTC, CTIE, The Travel Institutecenter_img FRAMINGHAM, MA — With the Travel Institute’s scholarship fund for its three flagship certification programs, Canadian agents can enroll in the Certified Travel Associate (CTA), Certified Travel Counselor (CTC), or Certified Travel Industry Executive (CTIE) programs and qualify to receive a 50% savings.All content and certifications are relevant to Canadian travel agents. The offer applies to enrollments throughout July and is part of The Travel Institute’s ‘Promote Your Professionalism’ month. Depending on selected coursework, the value may be as high as US$275 off standard curriculum pricing.“Simply put, when you learn more, you earn more, especially when you’re engaged in a comprehensive educational curriculum,” said Diane Petras, CTIE, President, The Travel Institute. “Certification increases earning because it builds the skills, knowledge, and confidence needed for career-minded travel agents to take risks, improve marketing, revise business plans, and take action. Our annual scholarship program is one of our most visible and far-reaching commitments to the vitality and future of our industry.”More news:  CIE Tours launches first-ever River Cruise CollectionRoyal Caribbean International’s Senior Vice President Vicki Freed, who completed her CTC from The Travel Institute more than 30 years ago, produced a short video in support of this year’s ‘Promote Your Professionalism’ campaign, calling certification “an investment in yourself, your brand, and your expertise.”Check out the video here: https://youtu.be/BcACPXZL4zY.Complementing the certification-scholarship offers in July are three interactive webinars, plus the weekly Hot Tip Tuesday and Friday Five Blog e-communications.The webinar schedule is as follows:July 10, 2 p.m. EDT – ‘Boot Camp: Storytelling Skills for the 21st Century, Part 1’ with Richard D’Ambrosio of Hudson Valley CommunicationsJuly 18, 1 p.m. EDT – ‘Top 5 Copy Mistakes You’re Making on Your Travel Website (and How to Fix Them!)’ with Emily Matras of Bon Vivant CopyJuly 24, 2 p.m. EDT – ‘PR Boot Camp: Storytelling Skills for the 21st Century, Part 2’ with Richard D’Ambrosio of Hudson Valley CommunicationsAll sessions are free, but advanced registration is required. In addition, webinars on topics including certification and specialization are offered in July.More news:  AMResorts has a new Sr. Dir. of Cdn. Sales & Consortia Rel’nsTo qualify for a certification scholarship, individuals must complete the application form on The Travel Institute’s website at thetravelinstitute.com.The Travel Institute Fund has endowed more than US$238,000 in scholarships since it was established in 2014 to celebrate the non-profit’s 50th anniversary. Share << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

Watch for a new Regional Director Canada for the JTB this spring

first_imgWatch for a new Regional Director, Canada for the JTB this spring About Latest Posts Kathryn FolliottEditor at TravelweekKathryn is Editor at Travelweek and has worked for the company since 1995. She has travelled to more than 50 countries and counts Hong Kong, Jerusalem, the Swiss Alps and the Galapagos Islands among her favourite destinations. Latest posts by Kathryn Folliott (see all) “They need to go where the bucks are”: Agents on ACTA partnership – April 18, 2019 As the cost of doing business climbs, host agencies, retail groups say they have options – April 4, 2019 As of 2021 Europe-bound clients will need to apply online for a visa waiver and pay a fee – April 3, 2019 << Previous PostNext Post >> Share Tags: Jamaica, JTB Posted by This story originally ran in the January 31st, 2019 issue of Travelweek magazine. To get Travelweek delivered to your agency for free, subscribe here.TORONTO — Now that Philip Rose has packed away his toque and taken up residence in sunny Fort Lauderdale as the Jamaica Tourist Board’s new Regional Director of Tourism, Northeast USA, the trade is wondering who will succeed him as the JTB’s new Regional Director for Canada.Dan Hamilton, the JTB’s District Sales Manager, says the target timeline for announcing the new Regional Director for Canada is early spring and specifically by April 1.For now Hamilton is keeping things under control by doing double duty as the JTB’s Acting Regional Director – Canada.Year over year Canadian arrivals to Jamaica came in just less than flat for 2018, making it almost equal to record-breaking 2017, when Jamaica welcomed 405,000 Canadian travellers. Worldwide arrivals to Jamaica topped 4.3 million.Looking back on 2018, the JTB’s Director of Tourism, Donovan White told Travelweek that arrivals remained strong despite a few challenges, not least of which was public perception following the State of Public Emergency (SOE) declaration for St. James Parish, including popular Montego Bay.The SOE freed up extra funds to get more police into the area in response to escalating crime and was seen as a positive and proactive move by the industry, however consumer media coverage prompted more than a few calls to the JTB from concerned travellers.Steady support from Jamaica’s tour operator partners, and a calm, level-headed response to the situation from the JTB itself, kept visitor numbers on an even keel.Back in October Jamaica had announced it was extending the SOE for St. James Parish until Jan. 31.“There’s a level of confidence for Canadians travellers with what to expect from Jamaica,” says White. “Jamaica is a tried and tested destination for Canadians.”Not only does Canada punch above its weight when it comes to visitor arrivals to Jamaica, it also has a return rate of about 42%.The priority now, says White, is to keep the experience fresh by emphasizing the island’s attractions, food, entertainment and culture. “Jamaica has experiences you can’t have anywhere else, from Chukka (with its long list of excursion options) to river rafting down the Martha Brae.”More news:  Transat calls Groupe Mach’s latest offer “highly abusive, coercive and misleading”And what about Jamaica’s hotels? As reported on Jan. 25, Both H10 Hotels and Princess Hotels & Resorts are coming to Jamaica, with a combined 3,000 new rooms set to open on the Caribbean island by 2021.Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett made the announcement at FITUR in Spain in late January. The total investment from the two hotel companies is worth US$750 million.H10 Hotels will construct 1,000 new rooms in Trelawny at a value of approximately US$250 million. H10 currently has more than 55 hotels in 18 destinations.Princess Hotels and Resorts, meanwhile, will construct 2,000 new rooms in Hanover, at a cost of US$500 million.The value of this latest investment from H10 and Princess “cannot be overstated as it will transform our tourism product and allow for heavier marketing of the destination,” said Bartlett.“More rooms mean more visitors and more visitors mean more foreign exchange earnings and ultimately more economic growth, which is in line with our 5x5x5 growth strategy.”Jamaica has made no secret of its goal to significantly boost its room stock.Currently Jamaica has about 32,000 rooms. As part of the Ministry’s 5x5x5 growth strategy, Jamaica is looking for 5 million visitors and $5 billion in revenues over 5 years. Jamaica also wants 15,000 additional rooms by 2022.The H10 and Princess mega projects “are ready to go”, adds Bartlett. “Funding is in place, lands have been purchased and development ready to begin following the requisite approvals being granted.”H10 will officially break ground on Feb. 6 and Princess Hotels will follow suit by mid-February.Other big-name resorts already opened or in the pipeline as part of Jamaica’s room stock surge are Excellence Oyster Bay and the new S Hotel Jamaica, now open on the site of the former Breezes Montego Bay.Meanwhile Sandals Resorts – practically synonymous with Jamaica and its stellar tourism product – is working on retrofits and refurbishments of its many properties on the island. Sandals Resorts International’s partnership with Marriott International to manage a new 220-room AC Hotels by Marriott property in Jamaica’s capital is moving ahead, with construction on the $50 million AC Kingston well underway. The hotel is currently eyeing a summer 2019 launch.More news:  Air Canada’s global sales update includes Managing Director, Canada & USA SalesOther new resort projects include a Hard Rock Montego Bay and a 5,000-room commitment from Karisma. RIU continues to bolster its Jamaica resort lineup, and Playa Resorts is now one of Jamaica’s largest resort owners thanks to its 2018 agreement with Jamaica’s Sagicor Group.Jamaica will need a lot of new rooms if it’s going to keep up with demand, and all the extra lift it’s getting. For this 2018-19 winter season Jamaica has more than 40,000 new seats out of Canadian gateways.“We believe we have to expand,” says White. “We want to expand the product and also diversify the product. And we want to achieve our objective of 50,000 rooms in the next few years.”Jamaica recently welcomed the world as host of the 2019 Caribbean Travel Marketplace, along with the Caribbean Hotel Tourism Association (CHTA) in collaboration with co-hosts the Jamaica Hotel & Tourist Association, the Jamaica Tourist Board and the Jamaica Ministry of Tourism. The event brought 576 supplier delegates from 147 companies to Montego Bay and also saw the official launch of the Global Tourism Resilience and Crisis Management Centre. The centre is designed to help vulnerable states across the world to recover quickly from natural disasters. Tuesday, February 5, 2019 Kathryn Folliott last_img read more

Beatrice Tollman inducted into British Travel Hospitality Hall of Fame

first_imgBeatrice Tollman inducted into British Travel & Hospitality Hall of Fame Share << Previous PostNext Post >> Posted by Tags: Britain, Red Carnationcenter_img Friday, May 10, 2019 TORONTO — Beatrice Tollman, President and Founder of Red Carnation Hotel Collection, part of The Travel Corporation, is the latest inductee into the British Travel & Hospitality Hall of Fame.Each year, the British Travel & Hospitality Hall of Fame event honours the greatest achievers in travel, hospitality, tourism and leisure, each having led their business to success while simultaneously inspiring and shaping the industry.In a career spanning more than 60 years, Tollman has used her service ethos, “no request is too large, no detail is too small”, to build a collection of four- and five-star boutique hotels in the U.K., Ireland, Geneva, Florida and South Africa.Receiving the award last week at the Four Seasons Hotel in London, Tollman said: “This wonderful award means the world to me, it’s quite overwhelming and I’m so appreciative of the kind words. The hotel industry is very competitive and you can only be a success if you’ve got your staff and teams working with enthusiasm and passion, and I do try to inspire them and show that I am always there to help them in any way I can.”More news:  Save the dates! Goway’s Africa Roadshow is backSome of the most inspiring ways Tollman motivates her staff include holding an Annual Staff Appreciation Party, which is considered the Oscars of Red Carnation, operating an award-winning training program, and personally selecting holiday gifts for the more than 2,000 employees across the business.Notable properties in the Red Carnation Hotel Collection include Ashford Castle in West Ireland, the Oyster Box Hotel in South Africa (the Best Hotel in South Africa according to TripAdvisor’s Travellers Choice), and the newly five-star rated Rubens at the Palace in London. In 2018, the collection was recognized by Travel & Leisure as the number two hotel brand in the world. The Travel Corporation’s list of brands is long and varied and includes Insight Vacations, Luxury Gold, Trafalgar, Contiki, Lion World Travel, U River Cruises, Uniworld and many more.For more information about The Red Carnation Hotel Collection, visit redcarnation.com. Travelweek Group last_img read more

Nicaraguas Ortega defends military ties with Russia

first_imgMANAGUA, Nicaragua – Nicaragua’s president Saturday defended his country’s right to strengthen its military with Russian help, seemingly backtracking on statements earlier in the week shrugging off suggestions of increased cooperation.Daniel Ortega said Nicaragua was “committed to further strengthening and modernizing the army” with the help of any country willing to provide aid, especially in respect to the Central American nation’s fight against drug trafficking.In remarks during a military exercise closed to press but broadcast on a local channel, Ortega said Russia has in recent years granted “extraordinary” and “sustained” cooperation “without putting a single condition.”He did not give details of an agreement between Nicaragua and Russia, but on March 27, Russia’s ambassador in Managua confirmed Moscow is interested in building a military resupply base in Nicaragua.Russian defense chief Sergei Shoigu has said that Russia is weighing increasing its military presence in countries including Nicaragua, Cuba and Venezuela — particularly bases to refuel Russian warplanes far from home.Nicaragua Army Chief General Julio Áviles had said this was just “speculation.”Russia has faced international condemnation over its actions in Crimea, which has switched to Moscow from Ukraine after pro-Russian forces seized the peninsula. Facebook Comments Related posts:Russia’s Putin in Cuba, Nicaragua to rekindle Latin America ties Central American leaders concerned over rekindling of Nicaragua-Russia military ties Russia back to fishing in troubled waters in Latin America, Costa Rica expert tells US congressional committee Nicaraguan legislature approves Russian satellite baseslast_img read more

Hard days night McCartney rocks Costa Ricas National Stadium

first_imgRelated posts:Tickets go on sale for Beatles legend Paul McCartney in Costa Rica Paul McCartney: All you need is love Casa Presidencial flies provincial flags Health Ministry shuts down Chocolate Festival As Sir Paul McCartney whipped off his blue blazer and picked up a color-spattered electric guitar, he declared, “I think we’re going to have afiesta here tonight.” He punched the word “fiesta,” and a wave of cheers washed over the audience. If there’s one thing McCartney knows how to do, it’s rally a crowd.The much anticipated “Out There” tour finally played in San José last night, and it more than lived up to expectations. With tickets selling for as much as $700, the concert has been hyped for months. Thousands of diverse fans crowded into the National Stadium to see McCartney play, and most seemed deeply satisfied.At 71 years old, McCartney still brings the same energy and showmanship he brought to “The Ed Sullivan Show” in 1963 1964. For the better part of four hours, McCartney played more than 30 songs. He introduced each ballad in enthusiastically broken Spanish, dedicating one song to “mi preciosa esposa” (my beautiful wife). He turned “Hey Jude” and “Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da” into colossal singalongs. He leaped in the air, held his guitar triumphantly aloft, and exclaimed “Pura Vida” at least three times, inciting roars of affection. Fans pack the National Stadium in the minutes before the concert begins. Robert Isenberg/The Tico TimesMcCartney switched from instrument to instrument, banging out notes on piano, then raking his guitar strings with ease. Advanced age hasn’t enfeebled him in the slightest: Along with fellow performers Rusty Anderson, Brian Ray, and Abe Laboriel, Jr., McCartney proved that he can still jam out to hits like “Paperback Writer” and “Back in the U.S.S.R.” with youthful virility. McCartney’s voice is still strong, and he continues to belt, scream, and hit falsettos for hours on end; his occasionally warble is endearing, just like the late Johnny Cash’s.What’s most striking about McCartney is his characteristic playfulness – on stage, he is equal parts rock star and screwball. He made heart shapes with his fingers. He sang the “Olé, Olé, Olé” soccer chant. He raised hands to his ears to encourage more cheering. McCartney is one of the only men in the world who can sport suspenders and a mullet-like haircut and still be galactically cool. Some of his set list sounds like children’s songs – the Beatles classic “All Together Now” and his latest single “New” are like pop-rock versions of a Raffi tune – but McCartney can pull off anything. Throughout the show, he looked unabashedly happy. Indeed, he looked like he could play, or even live, forever.The show had its share of fireworks, lasers, smoke machines, and bursts of flame, and video projections played throughout. But such window-dressing was fairly reserved, for McCartney needed no special effects. In the middle of the show, he drew a ukelele and played a simple rendition of “Something.” Faced with a legendary musician and his tiniest of instruments, the audience was petrified with joy. Such moments are never forgotten. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

New Years kickoffs Tennis Championship and other happenings around Costa Rica

first_imgRelated posts:Festival of Light, Egyptian dancers, and other happenings around Costa Rica Nativity scenes, funk music, and other happenings around Costa Rica Design Festival, Marine Corps picnic, and other happenings around Costa Rica Vacation fun for kids, Craft Beer Tour, and other happenings around Costa Rica Facebook Comments NYE 2016 After PartyPool party at Wyndham Herradura Hotel. Music by guest DJs DJ Tocuma, DR·leo, and Selecta Herbalist. Food and beverage sales.“New Year’s Eve 2016 After Party” takes place Jan. 1 at Wyndham Herradura Hotel, Central Pacific. ₡5,000. 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. More info: 2209-9800.Copa del CaféOne of the most important teen tennis championships worldwide, the competition features the best teen tennis players from around the world in a five-day cup.“Copa del Café” takes place Jan. 4 – 9 at the Costa Rica Country Club, Escazú. ₡2,500 – 9,500 ($5 – 19). More info: Event Facebook page.“The Bright Moment”An exhibit featuring a selection of 26 photographs of great masters of visual arts, from the perspective of the nationalized Mexican photographer Juan Guzmán. It includes photographs of Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, José Clemente Orozco, Rufino Tamayo, David Alfaro Siqueiros and Juan O’Gorman.“El Instánte Luminoso” will be exhibited Dec. 1 – Jan. 10 at Museo de Arte Contemporáneo. Tues.–Sun. 9 a.m.–4 p.m. Free. More info: 2256-1281.“Golden Room”Take advantage of a chance to visit one of San José’s loveliest and most famous rooms, featuring a mural of carved stucco and painted in bronze. The 150-square-meter space was developed by Louis Feron between 1939 and 1940 and was inaugurated on April 7, 1940.“Salón Dorado” will be on display Dec. 1 – Jan. 31 at Museo de Arte Contemporáneo. Tues.–Sun.  9 a.m.–4 p.m. Free. More info: 2256-1281PalmaresTwelve days of celebrations of the patron saint of Palmares, northwest of San José, includes horse parades, live music, a basketball contest, children’s festival, horse exhibit, carnivals, the ranchero festival, fireworks, and more.Fiestas Palmares take place Jan. 13 – 25 in Palmares, northwest of the capital. More info: Fiestas Palmares Facebook page.Festejos de Fin de Año de San José (Zapote)This mega-fest in the eastern San José district of Zapote offers a little bit of everything. Find all types of food, the famed Tico-style bullfights in the Zapote rings, dozens of rides, temporary tattoos, parades, live music, giant bars, and many more activities.The End-of-Year Celebrations take place Dec. 25 – Jan. 3 at Campo Ferial Zapote in eastern San José. More info: Fiestas Zapote Website.Art Exhibit: “Under the Sun”U.S. artist Cher Compton will unveil her latest exhibit, “Bajo el sol,” at Guanacaste’s Hidden Garden Art Gallery. Her paintings reflect the beauty of the simple elements that characterize Costa Rican life.“Bajo el sol” will be exhibited Dec. 12 – Feb. 5 at Hidden Garden Art Gallery, 5 km west of the Daniel Oduber International Airport, Liberia, Guanacaste. 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Free. More info: 2667-0592/8386-6872.last_img read more

3 time bombs found at north Nigeria university

first_img Comments   Share   How do cataracts affect your vision? KANO, Nigeria (AP) – A Nigerian police official says that three time bombs were found in different sections of a university in the city of Kano.Police spokesman Magaji Musa Majiya said Tuesday that the university personnel alerted the police after finding the bombs in the science and law buildings and at the sports complex of Bayero University. Majiya said police were on their way to the sites to diffuse the bombs. Top Stories New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Sponsored Stories More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvementscenter_img Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family How men can have a healthy 2019 Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates Kano is Nigeria’s largest city in its predominantly Muslim north. It saw at least 185 people killed in an attack by the Islamist sect Boko Haram in January.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) 4 ways to protect your company from cyber breacheslast_img read more

8th person dies in attack on Israelis in Bulgaria

first_img New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Defense Minister Ehud Barak told Army Radio on Thursday he thought Lebanon’s Iranian-sponsored Hezbollah group carried out the assault.The bombing in Burgas was the latest in a string of attacks and attempted attacks attributed to Iran targeting Israelis and Jews overseas in the past year.Iran has denied involvement for past attacks.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Clean energy: Why it matters for Arizona More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements Top ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates Sponsored Stories center_img Comments   Share   JERUSALEM (AP) – Israel’s Foreign Ministry says the death toll in the bombing of a bus of Israeli tourists in Bulgaria has risen to eight, after a man died of his wounds.Ministry spokesman Lior Ben Dor said Thursday that six Israelis were killed and 32 were wounded. The Israeli media says the other two dead were Bulgarians.The Israelis had just landed at the Black Sea city of Burgas on Wednesday when an explosion ripped through their bus. Top Stories Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family How men can have a healthy 2019last_img read more

Mexico pres seeks to cement legacy in last address

first_img Sponsored Stories Government statistics show 21,500 homicides in the first half of 2012, compared to about 25,000 for the entire year of 2007, Calderon’s first full year in office.No one knows if drug slayings have tapered in the last few months, as his administration claims, because the government stopped providing the official statistics a year ago. Public corruption persists and the economy for everyday Mexicans is sluggish.Mexico’s president is limited to one six-year term and Calderon’s will end Dec. 1, when President-elect Enrique Pena Nieto takes office in what was once considered Calderon’s worst nightmare, handing the country back to the party that was kicked out of power in 2000 after years of rule, often by coercion and corruption.Calderon has said he learned to fight the PRI at the knee of his father, a founder of the conservative National Action Party, or PAN, and he openly criticized the rival party before the election for its history of suppressing dissent. Other members of the PAN openly accused the PRI of making pacts with drug traffickers.Calderon’s criticisms have been more muted since Pena Nieto’s victory, and on Monday he congratulated the president-elect and urged all Mexicans to unite behind him. He boasted of expanding and cleaning up the federal police, putting nearly $160 billion in international reserves and creating more than 2 million jobs, twice the number during the term of his predecessor, Vicente Fox.“It’s been our generation’s job to assume the costs and risks of making urgent changes in politics and security,” he said in the speech at the National Palace. “The reform has begun to bear fruit, but real results will only be seen in the future.”Still, the short-term verdict on the Calderon administration is decidedly mixed, starting with the fact that violence-weary voters in the July national elections were so weary of his tenure that they kicked his party out of the presidency and brought back the long-ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI.“Mexico is a long way from having strong rule of law still, and a solid economic base has not necessarily led to the kind of jobs that people hope to have,” added Andrew Selee, director of the Mexico Institute, a Washington-based think tank. “It’s a well-managed economy but it’s not a dynamic economy. And that’s the legacy.”The sale of armored vehicles in Mexico has at least doubled since Calderon took office and the homicide rate has soared, with decapitations and mass slayings so common they often no longer make the front pages of national newspapers _ and with local papers often too intimidated to cover them at all. Patients with chronic pain give advice The government says it has weakened criminal organizations by confiscating $14.5 billion in assets, including $1 billion in cash from drug gangs.Authorities have confiscated more than 114 metric tons of cocaine, 11,000 metric tons of marijuana and 75 metric tons of methamphetamines since 2006. Authorities also seized nearly 154,000 weapons, the report said.Calderon’s report said the economy is “in a phase of growth” thanks to responsible public finances.He also said foreign direct investment totaled $126 billion during his administration.“This reflects the growing dynamism and competitiveness of our economy,” the report said.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Local and state police departments have only vetted 45 percent of their officers through July, with evaluations pending for more than 239,000 officers, Calderon’s report notes.Thousands of officers, including entire forces at times, have been fired, detained or placed under investigation for allegedly aiding drug gangs.Meanwhile, prosecutions of major, highly publicized crimes are still pending, including that of a casino attack a year ago in the northern city of Monterrey that killed 52 people, mostly innocent gamblers, and an attack that killed a U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agent, who was ambushed by an alleged groups of Zetas also last year.Under Calderon, the Attorney General’s Office has made high-profile arrests for drug-trafficking, public corruption and illegal arms possession, only later to release the accused for lack of evidence.Military generals and court officials have been accused in recent months of aiding both the Sinaloa and Beltran Leyva cartels.Calderon sharply escalated an armed offensive against drug traffickers when he took office in December 2006 and made the battle his top priority. More than 47,000 people had been killed in drug violence since then and through September 2011, the last time the government released official figures. But the reputation of the federal police also has been battered. Two weeks ago, federal police ambushed a U.S. Embassy vehicle, injuring two CIA agents working with a Mexican Navy captain. The federal agents said they were investigating a kidnapping when the opened fire on the armored SUV.In June, two federal police officers fatally shot three colleagues at Mexico City’s airport. Authorities said the shooters were part of a trafficking ring that flew in cocaine from Peru. Mexico announced this month that it was replacing 348 federal police assigned to security details at the airport in an effort to quash drug trafficking through the terminal.Last year, a businessman from Ciudad Juarez, across the border from El Paso, Texas, accused a group of 10 federal police officers of beating him, torturing him and demanding money. He was stabbed to death a day before he was to attend a judicial hearing on his accusations against the officers.Just last week, 10 more federal police were arrested for trying to extort a businesswoman in Morelos state south of Mexico City, an incident she captured on tape.“There have been many problems with restructuring the federal police because they haven’t eradicated corruption,” said Raul Benitez, an expert on security at Mexico’s National Autonomous University. “The adaption of the armed forces to fighting drug trafficking has been slow and difficult, and they haven’t been able to resolve the human right violations.” Associated PressMEXICO CITY (AP) – As he nears the end of his six-year term, Mexican President Felipe Calderon leaves his country with a better-armored economy _ and also more armored cars.Calderon delivered his final state-of-the-nation speech on Monday, trying to cement his legacy as the president who stabilized the economy and took on the country’s entrenched organized crime groups, putting Mexico on the road to rule of law. Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Top Stories Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk “Above all differences, it is essential that we support him,” he said.Calderon acknowledged during the speech that mistakes have been made in his government’s fight against drug trafficking and organized crime, but he said the effort helped to prevent criminals from taking control of the country.He defended his security strategy that largely has relied on unprecedented deployment of troops across the country.In terms of security, his report said Mexico has made its largest security investment in its history, allowing the federal police force to be purged of bad officers. He boasted of reformed laws to better coordinate security operations and noted that federal forces have captured or killed 22 of the country’s 37 most-wanted drug traffickers.Calderon praised the transformation of the federal police, which he said has grown from 6,500 officers to 37,000 during his term, including 8,600 college graduates _ a reform forced by the repeated failure of similar overhauls of earlier police agencies.The federal Public Safety Department, which oversees federal police officers, and the Attorney General’s Office have vetted 100 percent of their agents with background checks, he added. Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Comments   Share   5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Centerlast_img read more

Pakistan suspends death penalty during Ramadan

first_img Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility He later lifted the ban entirely, and since then about 150 inmates have been hanged in Pakistan.Pakistan’s military has intensified a military campaign against local and foreign militants since the Taliban school attack in Peshawar.The military killed 20 suspected militants in airstrikes Friday in the northwestern Khyber tribal region, the army said.June 15 marked the first anniversary of a major ongoing military operation in the North Waziristan tribal region. The military says it has killed 2,763 militants since launching the operation in North Waziristan and elsewhere, while losing 347 soldiers.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Quick workouts for men Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Sponsored Stories Comments   Share   New Valley school lets students pick career-path academiescenter_img Check your body, save your life Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Top Stories ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif temporarily suspended the use of the death penalty during the holy Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, which began on Friday, the government said.Sharif ordered a pause to observe “the sanctity of the holy month,” according to a statement released by the premier’s office Thursday evening.In December Sharif’s government partially lifted Pakistan’s moratorium on executions, specifically for terrorism-related cases, following the Taliban attack on a school in the city of Peshawar that left 150 people dead, mostly children. 5 treatments for adult scoliosislast_img read more

Aid group Thousands flee fighting in Syrias Hassakeh

first_img Comments   Share   The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said IS detonated three car bombs in the city over the past two days, killing 12 troops and pro-government gunmen.Syria’s civil war, now in its fifth year, has killed more than 220,000 people and displaced nearly half the country’s pre-war population of 23 million, including some 7.6 million who have fled to other parts of Syria.____Associated Press writer Albert Aji in Damascus, Syria, contributed to this report.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk The IS group attacked several government-held southern neighborhoods of Hassakeh on Thursday. The fighting has continued since then, leaving dozens dead, according to activists. Until last week, Hassakeh was split between government forces and Kurdish fighters.Earlier Monday, state news agency SANA said government air strikes killed “large numbers” of IS fighters in Hassakeh. A military official in the city said by telephone that Syrian troops have been making progress. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.The IS-affiliated Aamaq news agency released a video on Monday showing extremists fighting street battles in Hassakeh. The agency also showed a sports complex captured by IS fighters.Duerden said via Skype that many people are fleeing to nearby villages and towns, adding that there are at least 10,000 who are staying in schools or community centers.“It’s a big movement. People have talked about the city basically emptying out,” said Duerden.He said those fleeing Hassakeh are mainly women and children, and include people already displaced from other warzones. “We’ve also been seeing families split up, separated families, unaccompanied children, since many people had to leave quickly on foot.” 5 greatest Kentucky Derby finishes Sponsored Stories Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Mesa family survives lightning strike to home Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Parents, stop beating yourself up New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies BEIRUT (AP) — Fighting between the Islamic State group and the Syrian army in the mainly Kurdish city of Hassakeh has displaced at least 30,000 people, separated families and left some children unaccompanied, a member of an international aid group said Monday.Sam Duerden, an Iraq-based International Rescue Committee official, said people in the northeastern Syrian city of Hassakeh need food, water, shelter and medical assistance. Top Stories last_img read more

Biden to hail gay marriage ruling in NYC appearance

first_imgWASHINGTON (AP) — Vice President Joe Biden will hail the recent Supreme Court ruling legalizing gay marriage nationwide in an appearance in New York.The pro-gay marriage group Freedom to Marry says Biden will speak at a celebration the group is holding on Thursday on Wall Street. The group says the event will “celebrate success in winning marriage nationwide and the triumph it represents for America.” 5 ways to recognize low testosterone Biden has emerged as a prominent advocate for LGBT rights since announcing his support for gay marriage in the run-up to the 2012 presidential election. Biden’s surprise declaration spurred President Barack Obama to announce his own support.Biden has made a number of public appearances since his son, Beau Biden, died of brain cancer in May. He attended the Women’s World Cup over the weekend in Canada.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Mesa family survives lightning strike to home Parents, stop beating yourself up Top Stories Comments   Share   center_img Sponsored Stories Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility New Valley school lets students pick career-path academieslast_img read more

Thai government transition to help MICE industry

first_imgThe smooth transition into power of its newly elected government will show the world that Thailand is worth believing in and will help the country’s MICE industry, said the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) president. Speaking in Bangkok to visiting international media last week, TCEB president Akapol Sorasuchart said the election went well with no problems.“We believe the smooth transition will help the MICE industry,” he said. “In a better political atmosphere we believe the confidence in Thailand will grow.” TCEB, which has and will continue to directly report to the prime minister’s office, will not change its policies said Mr Sorasuchart.“We won’t change our campaigns. “The policy for TCEB has been very clear right from the beginning: that we in Thailand separate the leisure travellers from the meetings industry.” Illuminating Thai MICE business TCEB president inspiring business successcenter_img Source = e-Travel Blackboard: G.Alast_img read more

DJ VS code share to HK kicks off

first_imgVirgin Australia’s new code share agreement with Virgin Atlantic on flights between Sydney and Hong Kong is creeping close to its launch date, with sales on conjoined flights taking off this week.Announced yesterday, the Australian airline explained that under the approved agreement, Virgin Australia will add its code on Virgin Atlantic’s daily direct service to Hong Kong.Operating the Airbus 340-600 on the route, Virgin Australia group executive of alliances, network and yield Merren McArthur explained the agreement was part of the carrier’s plans to build its business and leisure network.“Hong Kong complements our network strategy to provide access to the most important international business and leisure destinations from Australia,” Ms McArthur said. Departing from Sydney at 2.25pm and arriving in Hong Kong at 9.55pm daily, travellers flying with the two airlines will also be able to benefit from reciprocal frequent flyer and lounge access.“Guests in Virgin Atlantic’s Upper Class and Gold and Platinum Members of Velocity Frequent Flyer will also be able to enjoy Virgin Atlantic’s Club House located at Hong Kong International Airport”, Ms McArthur added. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.Jlast_img read more

Carnival Corporation CMG sign MOU

first_imgCarnival Corporation signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) today with China Merchants Group (CMG) in an attempt to explore the possibility of two joint ventures in the Chinese cruise industry.The MOU is designed to accelerate the development and growth of the overall cruise industry in China, and it outlines a potential strategic partnership between Carnival Corporation and CMG.The first venture is a ship-owning joint venture where Carnival Corporation and CMG would own and operate its own cruise ships as part of the first-ever domestic Chinese cruise line specifically targeted to the Chinese market.The joint venture would explore the possibility of sourcing new ships that are designed and built in China, along with the possibility of acquiring existing cruise ships.The second venture is a port and destination development joint venture, and in this potential joint venture, CMG and Carnival Corporation would collaborate to develop turnaround and transit ports within and around China.Carnival Corporation chief operations officer Alan Buckelew, said that the MOU signed today signifies a great opportunity to take the next step in the future of Chinese cruising.“With CMG’s amazing track record, reach and influence in the market, we are working with a strategic partner that can help us explore immediate ways to impact cruise growth in China, including the possibility of a new Chinese cruise brand and new destinations,” Mr Buckelew said.Carnival Corporation just recently announced its plans for immediate capacity growth in China in 2015 to meet growing demand, this makes Carnival Corporation the first global cruise company with four ships homeported in China.Source = ETB Travel News: Lewis Wisemanlast_img read more

EVA Air ranks in The Worlds Top Ten Best Airlines

first_imgSource = EVA Air EVA Air ranks in “The World’s Top Ten Best Airlines”Taiwan’s leading independent airline, EVA Air ranks top ten for “The World’s Best Airlines of 2015” and the first place for “Best Airline Cabin Cleanliness of 2015” category at SKYTRAK’s annual World Airline Awards. Presented at the Paris Air Show on 16th June 2015, the accolade was voted for by passengers across the globe that participated in the World Airline Survey, the largest passenger satisfaction survey covering full service and low cost airlines across the globe.The World Airline Awards, also known as the Passengers Choice Awards have set the global benchmark of airline excellence and highlight the results of SKYTRAX’s World Airline Survey, which key objective is to encourage travellers to come to their own decisions on which airline they deem to be the most impressive. With no predetermined nomination list the survey and awards system welcomes opinions of travellers from across the world about any airline thus ensuring impartial and independent results.Covering over 200 airlines, results were surveyed over the telephone, through questionnaires and online about passenger experiences with airlines on the ground and in the air with more than 38 key performance indicators of airline front-line product and service, including check-in, boarding, onboard seat comfort, cabin cleanliness, food, beverages, in-flight entertainment and staff service during a 10-month period.EVA Air’s primary target is to enhance the in-flight experience on all aircrafts across its portfolio. Being based on measuring customer satisfaction, this most recent accolade is evidence that the airline still continues to improve its service to provide an unforgettable and comfortable flying experience for its passengers. Ranking first this year builds on EVA Air’s previous accolades including being ranked the “Best Airline Staff in Asia” by SKYTRAX in 2012 and being named in the “World’s Top 10 Airlines in Asia” and “Best Long-Haul Airline Asia/Pacific” in December 2014 by AirlineRatings.com. Book EVA Air flights herelast_img read more