LatinVision Media News

Friday, August 29, 2014

Hilton Panama comes to Latin America

Hilton Worldwide has announced the opening of the newly-built Hilton Panama, a 347-room Hilton Hotels & Resorts property in Panama City, Panama. 

With a privileged location in the heart of this booming city that offers panoramic ocean views, this newest hotel in Panama City opens its doors just in time to celebrate the Panama Canal’s Centennial. 

“We are thrilled to welcome Hilton Panama as the first Hilton Hotels & Resorts property in the country to the brand’s gro

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New Grand Circle ship to sail to South America, Europe

Grand Circle Cruise Line will be branching out in 2015 with nine new itineraries on a recently acquired vessel.

The small ship and river cruise specialist says its new 98-passenger, all-suite Corinthian will add trips to South America, North Africa and Europe to a schedule that already includes Antarctica voyages.

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Thursday, August 28, 2014

Trip Tips - Latin Americans infuse New York with Hispanic culture

(Reuters) - Newcomers from Mexico and Central and South America are streaming into New York City in greater numbers, joining the long-standing communities of Puerto Ricans and Dominicans and enriching the chorus of Latin voices in the Big Apple.

Spanish is now spoken in nearly a quarter of New York homes and the variety of accents is growing, along with the variety of regional cultures.

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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Top 20 things to do in South America

With all eyes on Brazil, host of the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games, avoid the crowds and overinflated prices and head to its neighbours, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador and Colombia.

I spent four months travelling through these countries, and here's my pick of the top 20 things to do.

ARGENTINA
Indulge in food and wine

While the food throughout the continent is top-notch, you won't want to weigh yourself after leaving Argentina. The steak in Buenos Aires lives up to the hype and, with a parilla (steakhouse) on almost every corner, you won't have trouble finding somewhere to unleash your inner carnivore.

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Friday, August 22, 2014

See which cities Visit Orlando is targeting to boost tourism numbers

So how does Visit Orlando plan to attract more visitors than other destinations? By attracting the people who visit those other destinations to Central Florida.

That was the strategy the region's visitors bureau unveiled at a members meeting on Aug. 21. Visit Orlando will look at markets such as New York, Chicago, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and Atlanta as target markets for increased marketing efforts.

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Thursday, August 21, 2014

Travel Habits of U.S. Hispanics Unveiled at National Association of Hispanic Journalists Convention; Best Western Survey Reveals Travel Trends

PHOENIX, Ariz., Aug. 8, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- via PRWEB - A new survey on the travel habits of U.S. Hispanics conducted by Best Western International revealed mobile is a critical tool for Hispanic travelers on the go, with more than a quarter of respondents reporting they have booked travel reservations via mobile phones in the past year.

Survey results also found 62 percent of respondents use their mobile phone to research their travel options, and 28 percent of travelers rely on their mobile phone to discover nearby attractions around their hotel.
Best Western announced its survey findings at the 30th annual National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ) convention in San Antonio, Texas today.

"We learned that Hispanics are increasingly digitally savvy and comfortable researching and booking travel online and via mobile," said Felipe Carreras, director of eCommerce for Best Western International. "Our survey found eight out of ten Hispanics complete their travel bookings online."

With the convenience of search engines, Meta travel search sites, social media, online travel agencies and brand websites, more than 90 percent of travelers research their options online before booking. Other survey findings indicated that 85 percent of Latino travelers are typically traveling primarily for leisure – either for vacation or to visit friends and family.

Carreras presented the survey results at the NAHJ convention as a participant of its "La Plaza Talks" speaker series.

The survey underscores that travel as a family affair is increasingly common with Hispanics. In fact, 70 percent of travelers said in the past year they have traveled with a family member from a younger generation, and 60 percent have traveled with a family member from an older generation. Of those who primarily travel for business, more than half (52 percent) are somewhat to very likely to bring family members along with them on a business trip.
"U.S. Hispanics are a crucial segment in today's travel landscape, and these survey results reiterate the importance of brands catering to their specific needs and habits," said Dorothy Dowling, senior vice president of marketing and sales for Best Western International. "For many Hispanics, those needs start with family travel. Best Western is proud to offer family friendly accommodations and a robust online presence for researching and booking travel."

Additional Survey Highlights:
  • Almost 60 percent of U.S. Hispanic travelers are somewhat to very likely to extend a business trip by one or more days to add leisure time to the trip.
  • Forty-nine percent of travelers, who indicated the primary reason for the majority of their travel was business, stayed in hotels five or more times in the past year, compared to 18 percent of respondents who indicated the primary reason for the majority of their travel was vacation.
  • When traveling for both business and leisure, access to free Wi-Fi is most important, followed by complimentary breakfast and/or happy hour specials.
  • Of those who travel with a family member who is part of an older generation, 71 percent do the travel research. Additionally, 44 percent primarily pay for the trip when traveling with a family member of an older generation.
The NAHJ Convention is a three day event offering 60 panels to more than 1500 journalists from around the country. Best Western is one of several sponsors of the 30th annual convention, taking place in San Antonio, August 7-9. For additional survey findings, please email bwlatino(at)allisonpr(dot)com.


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Delta presents its 2013 Caribbean, Mexico and Latin America Travel Guide


ATLANTA and SAO PAULO, Brazil — Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) presents the 2013 Caribbean, Mexico and Latin America Travel Guide. This is the second edition of Delta´s annual guide which is included as an insert in Recommend Magazine, a travel publication distributed to over 50,000 travel agents in the United States and Canada.

“We are excited to bring to travel agencies our information-packed guide about Carribean, Mexico and Latin America destinations. It also shows Delta´s growing commitment to this vibrant region,” said David Bishko, Delta´s Managing Director market development and analysis — Latin America and the Caribbean. “As part of our efforts to become known as the best U.S. airline serving Latin America, we have systematically reinforced our investments throughout the region.

Delta´s 2013 Guide reflects a unique blend of natural beauty, exotic cultures and cosmopolitan cities in Latin America. Travel agents will find useful information and pictures about the spectacular beaches of the Caribbean islands, bustling cities, historic colonial towns and beautiful sights, including the natural beauty that can be found along Central America’s Barrier Reef, and in South America’s Amazonia and Patagonia.

The 2013 Caribbean, Mexico and Latin America Travel Guide is also available for reading in Delta Sky Clubs in the major airports of U.S. and Canada. Additionally, a digital version is uploaded on Recommend.com website or for downloading at http://www.nxtbook.com/worth/SUPPLEMENTS/2013DeltaTravelGuide/index.php.

Delta is working to become the best U.S. carrier in Latin America and the Caribbean. As part of that goal Delta has established a long-term exclusive alliance with GOL Línhas Aereas Inteligentes investing more than US $100 million in GOL. Likewise, Delta has invested more than US $65 million in Aeroméxico as part of a long-term exclusive commercial alliance and entered a code sharing agreement with Aerolíneas Argentinas solidifying its footprint in Latin America. Executive Travel magazine recognized Delta with the Gold Leading Edge Award for the Best Flight Experience to Mexico. Delta provides service to 32 countries and 49 destinations in the region offering more than 1,000 weekly flights between Latin America and the U.S. Spanish speaking Delta customers can receive real-time, on-the-go travel assistance in Spanish and Portuguese through its Twitter channels @DeltaAssist_ES and @DeltaAjuda 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. EST. Brazilian customers can also access Delta´s dedicated Brazil Facebook page visiting http://www.facebook.com/DeltaAirLinesBrasil.

Delta Air Lines serves more than 160 million customers each year. Delta was named by Fortune magazine as the most admired airline worldwide in its 2013 World’s Most Admired Companies airline industry list, topping the list for the second time in three years. With an industry-leading global network, Delta and the Delta Connection carriers offer service to 319 destinations in 59 countries on six continents. Headquartered in Atlanta, Delta employs nearly 80,000 employees worldwide and operates a mainline fleet of more than 700 aircraft. The airline is a founding member of the SkyTeam global alliance and participates in the industry’s leading trans-Atlantic joint venture with Air France-KLM and Alitalia. Including its worldwide alliance partners, Delta offers customers more than 15,000 daily flights, with hubs in Amsterdam, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Detroit, Memphis, Minneapolis-St. Paul, New York-LaGuardia, New York-JFK, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Salt Lake City and Tokyo-Narita. Delta is investing more than $3 billion in airport facilities and global products, services and technology to enhance the customer experience in the air and on the ground. Additional information is available on delta.com, Twitter @Delta, Google.com/+Delta and Facebook.com/delta.

SOURCE: Delta Air Lines

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Guatemala Counting on Tourism to Boost Economy

GUATEMALA CITY – The Guatemalan Tourism Institute (Inguat) will increase advertising the country as a destination for foreign visitors with the aim of boosting the economy.

The markets of the United States, Canada and Mexico, as well as El Salvador and Honduras, are the primary areas for promoting Guatemala as a vacation destination, Inguat director Pedro Duchez told reporters.

The tourism plan for 2013 includes strengthening different tourist sites and positioning the Central American country “online” since 95 percent of the travel decisions made – or booked – by prospective tourists are done via the Internet.


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Friday, April 5, 2013

Latin Trails presents travel adventure tours of the amazing Amazon

March 12, 2013 - The Amazon rainforest was named as one of the New7Wonders of Nature. This amazing area represents over half of the planet's remaining rainforests, and it comprises the largest and most species-rich tract of tropical rainforest in the world. The Amazon River is the largest river in the world by volume, with a total flow greater than the top ten rivers worldwide combined. It accounts for approximately one-fifth of the total world river flow and has the biggest drainage basin on the planet. You can grasp an understanding of its immensity when you discover that not a single bridge crosses the Amazon.

The Amazon rainforest, also known as Amazonia or the Amazon jungle, is a moist broadleaf forest that covers most of the Amazon Basin of South America. This basin encompasses seven million square kilometers (1.7 billion acres), of which five and a half million square kilometers (1.4 billion acres) are covered by the rainforest. This region includes the territory belonging to nine nations.

The majority of the forest is contained within Brazil with 60% of the rainforest, followed by Peru with 13%, and with minor amounts in Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Guyana, Suriname, and French Guiana.

It is no wonder then that the Amazon is high on travelers’ bucket list of places to go, and Latin Trails offers a wide variety of tours to take visitors through this wonderous region. From river boat tours to jungle tree-top hotels, from exploring jungle trails to bird watching, and from canoe rides to fishing, Latin Trails has the adventure and accommodation to satisfy every adult dream and childhood fantasy of exploring this great wonder of the world.

SOURCE: LatinTrails

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

RedMas “De Vacaciones: US Hispanic Vacations Trends 2012″ Research featured in eMarketer

US Hispanic Travelers Embrace Digital Channels for Booking AUGUST 20, 2012
Demographic shows penchant for online and mobile purchases
The US Hispanic demographic is on the leading edge of adopting mobile technology, and their preferences for travel booking channels have important implications for travel marketers.

“De Vacaciones: US Hispanics Vacation Trends 2012,” conducted through RedMas’ network of mobile sites, found that Hispanics prefer to spend their vacations with family and at personally significant locations. According to the poll of 2,171 bilingual respondents, 57% go on vacation at least once a year, 14% travel about twice a year, and 5% take off more than three times a year.

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MGM Resorts International Named a Best Company for Diversity by Leading Hispanic Business Publication

LAS VEGAS, Sept. 10, 2012 — /PRNewswire/ -- MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) is one of the nation's "2012 Best Companies for Diversity", says HispanicBusiness Media, a leading publishing and information services company for Hispanic professionals and entrepreneurs.

Selected for its commitment to Hispanic hiring, promotion, marketing, philanthropy, and supplier diversity, the Company ranked 26th on a list of 55 companies and secured a spot as the only gaming corporation to rank in this year's competition.

"Top companies on this year's list went well beyond workforce diversity initiatives and implemented strategies to reach more Hispanic consumers and increase their procurements with minority- and Hispanic-owned suppliers," says Bill Krutzen, Director of Operations for HispanicBusiness Media.

MGM Resorts' placement on "2012 Best Companies" complements other 2012 awards the Company has received, including recognitions among DiversityInc Magazine's "Top 10 Companies for Latinos" and LATINA Style Magazine's recently announced "50 Best Companies for Latinas."

"On behalf of our 62,000 employees, it is an honor to be recognized by HispanicBusiness Media as a national leader in Diversity," said Jim Murren, Chairman and CEO of MGM Resorts International. "We consider the inclusion of Hispanic employees in our workforce and Hispanic-owned businesses in our company commerce a priority as a leading company, but also important from a diversity standpoint as it brings substantial benefits by helping us better serve the needs of customers of various backgrounds."

Among the other well-known companies named to the "2012 Best Companies" list are: Aflac Inc., American Express Co., The Coca-Cola Co., General Mills, and Southwest Airlines.

In 2000, MGM Resorts International became the gaming industry's first company to implement a voluntary diversity initiative. The Company has since increased its number of Hispanic employees and business partners. Highlights of the initiative relative to the Hispanic community include:

In 2011, the Company expended more than $27 million in business with certified Hispanic-owned businesses.

Hispanics comprise 31.7 percent of MGM Resorts' total workforce—14.36 percent hold managerial or higher ranking positions.

The Company offers several training and management development programs, including ESL (English as a Second Language) classes in order to recruit and develop employees.

MGM Resorts has established partnerships with numerous Hispanic national and local organizations, such as: the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility, National Council of La Raza, Las Vegas Latin Chamber of Commerce and the Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting.

For more information regarding HispanicBusiness Media's "2012 Best Companies for Diversity", visit www.hispanicbusiness.com.

To learn more about MGM Resorts' Diversity Initiative and its engagement of the Hispanic community, please visit: http://www.mgmresorts.com/files/company/AnnualCorporateSocialResponsibilityReport2011.pdf.

About HispanicBusiness Media
Now celebrating more than 30 years as an award-winning publishing and information services company, HispanicBusiness Media is the nation's leading source of information for and about Hispanic professionals and entrepreneurs. HispanicBusiness Media includes www.HispanicBusiness.com, www.HireDiversity.com, HispanTelligence®, the Diversity Partnership, and HispanicBusiness Events, including the Entrepreneur Awards Gala (EOY) and the Woman of the Year Awards Gala (WOY).

About MGM Resorts International
MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM) is one of the world's leading global hospitality companies, operating a peerless portfolio of destination resort brands, including Bellagio, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay and The Mirage. For more information about MGM Resorts International, visit the Company's website at www.mgmresorts.com.

SOURCE: MGM Resorts International


Read more here: http://www.heraldonline.com/2012/09/10/4251316/mgm-resorts-international-named.html#storylink=cpy

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

New York to showcase billion-dollar opportunities in Pacific, South American growth center

Companies from various sectors and countries will be coming together September 18th in New York to hear about exciting new investment opportunities in Guayaquil, many of them linked to the growing focus on trade between West Coast of the United States, Latin America and Asia.

As a leading port and industrial center in the northwestern seaboard of South America, the Ecuadorean city is now emerging as a logistics hub for Pacific region trade. Hundreds of millions of dollars, much of it from multinational companies, has already been invested for significant infrastructure upgrading.

Some 15 projects including public-private partnerships (PPP) will be unveiled at the “Guayaquil Roadshow: Investment & Tourism Forum” – subtitle “Logistic Platform of the Pacific” – which takes place in the Grand Hyatt in midtown Manhattan.

Business and investment opportunities could potentially total several billion dollars in transport and logistics, renewable energy, construction and urban management, tourism, fishing and aquaculture, agribusiness, education and financial services, organizers said. The event is aimed at companies in these target sectors plus law firms, specialists in project financing and consultants. While the prime focus is American companies looking for niches in dynamic emerging markets, organizers are also working with foreign chambers of commerce to involve Asian and European companies.

Event sponsors include the Development Bank of Latin America (CAF), Guayaquil city authorities, various logistics companies and America’s Dole Food Company, which has huge operations in Ecuador producing organic bananas.

Guayaquil stands out in Ecuador and indeed much of South American as a go-ahead, pro-business city. It pioneered PPPs to bring private investment into critical infrastructure and urban development, and by the end of this year it will be the only city in the country with 100% sewerage, piped drinking water and paved roads.

Peter Gilmore, general manager of Dole in Ecuador, said that perhaps excluding a few places in Brazil, he didn’t think “any city in Latin America has changed this much in 10 years. It’s a tremendous turn around.”

Jaime Nebot, the latest in a succession of pro-business mayors and one of 11 scheduled speakers, said the secret lay in honest and transparent administration that puts service to the people in first place: “What we have done is conceptually simple, although the execution is more complex.” Nebot said that no less than 85% of city revenues go to investment and public services, with just 15% spent on “nonproductive expenses.”

City fathers have promoted major urban renewal and renovation of the city’s historic old neighborhoods, seeking to boost tourism – Guayaquil is the gateway to the Galapagos Islands, with almost half a million visitors passing through each year. Privatization has won the city’s upgraded airport recognition from the Montreal-based Airports Council International as best in the world in its class, while international operators have poured over US$200 million into modernizing existing seaports. Now there are plans – to be discussed at the September 18th event – for major new deep-water facilities with a free-port and potentially a second airport.

Additional information about the “Guayaquil Roadshow: Investment & Tourism Forum” can be found on the event site: http://www.nationroadshow.com/guayaquil.

SOURCE: Peninsula Press

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Google maps ancient Mexican ruins

Google is expanding its Street View offerings to include dozens of 360-degree photo tours of ancient Mexican monuments such as Teotihuacan, Chichen Itza and Palenque.

The additions are aimed at helping Mexico "open a window to the world, to encourage physical visits to the pre-Hispanic sites and thus in turn benefit cultural tourism," Miguel Angel Alva, director of marketing for Google Mexico, said this week in an announcement from Mexico's National Institute of Anthropology and History, or INAH.

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Monday, August 13, 2012

With London done, Brazil gears up for '16 carnival

August 12, 2012 | by Janie McCauley

LONDON — For all those beach volleyball players who thought Horse Guards Parade transformed itself into the sport's best Olympic venue yet, wait until they hit the sand in Brazil in four years.

It's Rio's turn – and if anybody knows how to throw a carnival, the Brazilians sure do.

"Rio! Rio! Rio!" Brazilian beach volleyball star Emanuel said after winning a silver medal last week. Emanuel plans to be there as a fan by then, his international playing days over.

Yes, the Brazilians have long begun envisioning their Olympics.

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Thursday, August 9, 2012

Experts: Mayas may have used chocolate as spice

MEXICO CITY (AP) - Archaeologists say they have found traces of 2,500-year-old chocolate on a plate in the Yucatan peninsula, the first time they have found ancient chocolate residue on a plate rather than a cup, suggesting it may have been used as a condiment or sauce with solid food.

Experts have long thought cacao beans and pods were mainly used in pre-Hispanic cultures as a beverage, made either by crushing the beans and mixing them with liquids or fermenting the pulp that surrounds the beans in the pod. Such a drink was believed to have been reserved for the elite.

But the discovery announced this week by Mexico's National Institute of Anthropology and History expands the envelope of how chocolate may have been used in ancient Mexico.

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Tanzania turns to Mexico to boost tourism

July 26, 2012 | by Felix Andrew

Time is ripe for Tanzania to borrow a leaf from countries highly advanced in tourism to enable it compete and increase foreign exchange to boost her economy.

Statistics from the World Bank show that the number of arrivals in the country in 2010 was 783.000.
Tanzania has one of the lowest GDP per capita in the world. The nation has many natural resources including natural gas, gold, diamonds, coal, iron ore, uranium, nickel, chrome, tin, platinum, coltan and niobium.

However, the Tanzanian economy depends heavily on agriculture, which provides 85 percent of exports and employs 80 percent of the work force.

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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Spain: El Viajero travel site gets a makeover

Seventy trendspotters - local residents in over 60 cities worldwide – will be keeping readers of the travel website El Viajero (The Traveler) up to date on all the latest travel news worldwide. This network, which will be expanded to include other trendspotters based in the world’s most vibrant capital cities, is the main novelty of the Viajero website , which as of today gets a new look plus expanded content. The site is also teaming up with two of the leading international firms in the travel sector: Lonely Planet and Trip Advisor.

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Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The top 10 travel apps you’ll need this summer

1. Smart Traveler
The US State Department developed a surprisingly useful app stuffed full of juicy information. Country by country detailed data like Know Before You Go, Travel Warnings and Entrance Requirement info is invaluable when planning travel to remote destinations.
Favorite Feature: Shake for a random country (Nerd alert!)
Free: iPhone only.

2. Hipmunk
Our favorite booking app on the market takes the “agony” out of airfare and hotel search. Its simple and useful UI makes flight search fast and easy. The heat map function is useful to quickly see if your hotel is near nightlife, restaurants, or in the middle of nowhere. Not just hotels, Hipmunk even filters results from Airbnb and Hostelbookers.
Favorite Feature: Heat map “Vice” option
Free: iPhone and Android.

3. Pinterest
Pinterest has emerged as a disruptive travel site for inspiration. You can organize your boards by geography (Asia, Latin America, Africa, etc) or use it to plan your honeymoon, bucket list or dream vacation. Pinterest is a great way to discover the places you didn’t realize you want to discover.
Favorite Pinterest Travel photos: Huts over the water (anywhere!)
Pinterest.com

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Friday, June 22, 2012

Sheraton Hacienda Del Mar hosts World Leaders at 2012 G20 Summit

Los Cabos, Mexico (June 20, 2012) – The Sheraton Hacienda del Mar Golf & Spa Resort, Los Cabos recently played host to top world leaders during the 2012 G20 Summit from June 18-19, 2012 and served as the official resort for the RethinkingG20 event held two days prior to the G20 Summit which was attended by Mexico’s President, Felipe de Jesus Calderón.

Among the long list of significant guests to take part in delegations at the resort were President of Indonesia Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, Prime Minister of Italy Mario Monti, Princess Maxima of the Netherlands, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom David Cameron, President of South Korea Lee Myung-bak, President of the Republic of Turkey Abdullah Gül, Prime Minister of Turkey Recep Taryyin Erdogan, President of Benin Yayi Boni and President of Ethiopia Girma Wolde-Giorgis,

Representatives from government organization also delegated at the Sheraton Hacienda del Mar Golf & Spa Resort, including United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-Moon, International Labor Organization director-general Juan Somavia, World Health Organization director-general Margaret Chan, President of the African Development Bank Donald Kaberuka, Chair of the Centre for Climate Change Economics and Policy Lord Nicholas Stern and International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde.

“Knowing that our G20 guests have experienced the best hotels and resorts around the world, the positive accolades we received from them about their experience at the resort were humbling,” said Renanto Mendonca, general manager of the Sheraton Hacienda del Mar Golf & Spa Resort, Los Cabos. “We provided them with the same superior service and respect that we offer all of our guests with on a daily basis.”

During the G20 Summit, the Sheraton Hacienda del Mar continued its normal operations, successfully blending and responding to the influx of day-to-day guests, security and G20 attendees.

For more information on the Sheraton Hacienda del Mar Golf & Spa Resort and its participation in the 2012 G20 Summit in Los Cabos, or to make reservations, please call 52-624-145-8000 or visit www.sheratonloscabos.com.

About Sheraton Hacienda del Mar Golf & Spa Resort, Los Cabos
Situated on 28 acres overlooking the Sea of Cortez, the Sheraton Hacienda del Mar Golf & Spa Resort, with 270 guest rooms each featuring the Sheraton Sweet Sleeper Bed, whirlpool tubs and private terraces, is impeccably reminiscent of an upscale seaside village. The sprawling, Hacienda-inspired resort is home to five restaurants and five bars, four infinity and cascading swimming pools, the acclaimed Cactus Spa and Fitness Center (part of the Starwood Spa Collection) and a broad selection of outdoor activities. Boasting Los Cabos’ largest meetings facility with more than 18,000 square feet of function space, Sheraton Hacienda del Mar welcomes meetings and special events of all sizes. A small chapel and beachfront locations are also available for weddings and the staff has extensive experience with multicultural wedding planning. For more information, please visit www.sheratonloscabos.com or call (011) 52-624-145-8000.

About Starwood Hotels & Resorts
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 1,103 properties in nearly 100 countries and 154,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood is a fully integrated owner, operator and franchisor of hotels, resorts and residences with the following internationally renowned brands: St. Regis®, The Luxury Collection®, W®, Westin®, Le Méridien®, Sheraton®, Four Points® by Sheraton, Aloft®, and ElementSM. The Company boasts one of the industry’s leading loyalty programs, Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG), allowing members to earn and redeem points for room stays, room upgrades and flights, with no blackout dates. Starwood also owns Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc., a premier provider of world-class vacation experiences through villa-style resorts and privileged access to Starwood brands. For more information, please visit www.starwoodhotels.com.

SOURCE: Starwood Hotels

Monday, June 11, 2012

Delta Air Lines launched Despegando

Delta Air Lines has launched Despegando, a new Spanish-language section of SKY magazine, the world’s most-read onboard lifestyle magazine. This section appears in every monthly issue of DeltaSky.

The first issue of the eight-page section, appeared in the March issue of DeltaSky, highlighting Delta’s continued strength in Latin America, and is tailored to Delta’s Spanish-speaking customers.

"Despegando is the latest benefit for Delta’s Spanish-speaking customers as we work to become the best U.S. carrier in Latin America," said Nicolas Ferri, vice president -- Latin America and the Caribbean. "In recent months we’ve strengthened our Latin American network, launched in-flight service improvements and we’ll have even more news in coming weeks."

The publication profiles a celebrity in each issue. "We were proud to have Sofía Vergara featured in our first edition," Ferri said. "She is not only a Latin American star but, a true crossover celebrity in the U.S. Hispanic market."

Other features in Despegando include: 

  • "1 City/5 Ways," which offers different perspectives to explore a single city, from unique culinary offerings to the region’s history and people. 
  • "Destinations With," where travel experts highlight their top picks for food, fun and accommodations in a variety of destinations. 
  • "My Favorite Street," which takes readers to the favorite street of a travel expert, mapping out the best stops along the way. 
  • "Five Minutes With," which features a Q&A with top business leaders. 
  • "Road Warrior," where some of the world’s busiest travelers offer their tips and strategies for thriving in life on the road and in the skies. 
  • “Style Inspirations,” which highlights a city’s unique fashion, accessories, gifts, and fine foods. 
Despegando is tailored for Latin Americans who live in or travel to and from Latin America, as well as Latin Americans living in the United States. The insert will appear monthly in the 600,000 copies of the full press run of SKY magazine, which can be found on board every Delta flight and Delta Private Jet, at Sky Clubs, and Delta 360 Clubs at major sports stadiums worldwide.

Ads in Despegando must be in Spanish and space is limited to 8 pages only.

About Delta Air Lines
Delta Air Lines serves more than 160 million customers each year. Delta was named by Fortune magazine as the most admired airline worldwide in its 2011 World's Most Admired Companies airline industry list, and was named the “Top Tech-Friendly U.S. Airline” by PCWorld magazine for its innovation in technology. With an industry-leading global network, Delta and the Delta Connection carriers offer service to 342 destinations in 61 countries on six continents. Headquartered in Atlanta, Delta employs 80,000 employees worldwide and operates a mainline fleet of more than 700 aircraft. A founding member of the SkyTeam global alliance, Delta participates in the industry’s leading trans-Atlantic joint venture with Air France-KLM and Alitalia. Including its worldwide alliance partners, Delta offers customers more than 13,000 daily flights, with hubs in Amsterdam, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Detroit, Memphis, Minneapolis-St. Paul, New York-JFK, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Salt Lake City and Tokyo-Narita. The airline’s service includes the SkyMiles frequent flier program, a world-class airline loyalty program; the award-winning BusinessElite service; and more than 50 Delta Sky Clubs in airports worldwide. Delta is investing more than $2 billion through 2013 in airport facilities and global products, services and technology to enhance the customer experience in the air and on the ground. Customers can check in for flights, print boarding passes, check bags and review flight status at delta.com. Likewise, the Twitter channel @DeltaAssist_ES provides real-time, on-the-go travel assistance specifically to Spanish-speaking passengers from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. EST.

SOURCE: Delta Air Lines

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Budget Travel: Latin America's Most Unusual Hotels

May 27, 2012 | by Julie Schwietert Collazo

Some travelers crave the familiar comforts of chain hotels, which offer the same amenities whether you're in Manhattan or Mexico City.

Other travelers, though, prefer to seek out the unusual on their journeys. They look for hotels offering unconventional design or unique activities that couldn't be found elsewhere.

Latin America abounds with the weird and the wonderful. From a hotel made of salt to one that's entirely mobile, these are some of the once-in-a lifetime hotels you can find in the region.

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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Costa Rica Considered Top Wedding Destination in Latin America

Costa Rica was recently recognized as the premier destination for weddings in Latin America in The Knot MarketIntelligence: 2012 Destination Weddings Study.

Wedding website, TheKnot.com, polled 2,757 qualified respondents and found that 32 percent cited the Riviera Maya as top wedding destination in Mexico while Los Cabos notched 20 percent of the vote and Cancun netted 14 percent.

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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Surf and turf: Central America holiday ideas

May 18, 2012 | by Rachel Dixon

Central America is gaining in popularity for adventure travel. Earlier this year, Latina Marketing, which promotes the region in Europe, announced a 7% increase in British travellers there in 2011 compared with 2010 – there were around 85,000 between January and October. There had been a 6% increase in foreign visitors, to more than 9.5 million.

Here are some of the region's highlights, to explain why it's on the hot list:

  • Belize
  • Costa Rica
  • Guatemala
  • El Salvador
  • Nicaragua
  • Honduras
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Panama: a hot holiday destination?

May 18, 2012 | by Gemma Bowes

Chickens and scruffy children on bikes cross our path as we stroll along a sandy road past candy-coloured buildings beside a turquoise Caribbean sea. "Hey my friend!" Jim, our guide, stops to slap a Rasta man on the back. "How you been? You got your guitar today?"

"No man," says Calypso Joe, shaking his head, " … but I can go get it. You buy me a beer, and I play some guitar."

Ten minutes later we're on a rickety wooden platform above gentle waves, behind a shack of a cafe, beers in hand. Joe, in his 50s and wearing a palm tree-patterned shirt, strums calypso rhythms, the kind introduced to these islands by the African-Caribbean workers brought in by the banana plantation companies.

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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Colombians Tour Florida More Than Ever

April 23, 2012 | by Doreen Hemlock

Credit their good economy or South Florida's great shopping: More Colombians are coming to Florida.

Last year, the number of Colombians visiting Florida rose by 13 percent to more than 306,000. Their spending jumped 24 percent to $303 million.

That made Colombia No. 5 in spending by foreign visitors to the Sunshine State, said the state's tourism marketing agency.

Read full article
 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Dubai targets Latin America for tourism growth

April 15, 2012 | by Rebecca Bundhun

Dubai's tourism authority is planning to open an office in South America as it hopes fast-growing Latin economies such as Brazil and Argentina will supply an influx of visitors to the emirate.

"We are looking into South America," said Hamad bin Mejren, the executive director of business tourism at the Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM).

"That is a market we are concentrating on. I assure you we have plans to open an office in South America. When Emirates [Airline] flies to a destination, we work together."

Read full article

Monday, April 2, 2012

Tapping into the US Hispanic travel market


PUERTO VALLARTA-RIVIERA NAYARIT, Mexico - In a historic partnership between two visionary travel industry organizations, the NTA-ASTA Hispanic Business Development Task Force met for the first time in conjunction with Tianguis Turistico Mexico and developed a strategic plan to capture the undertapped US Hispanic travel market.
“Because tourism creates jobs and the Hispanic market represents 16 percent of the US population, there is an unprecedented opportunity for growth,” said Olga Ramudo, a member of both NTA and ASTA. “We want to ensure this market is serviced, captured, and has a voice in our industry.
Read full article

Monday, March 19, 2012

Travel Agencies in Rio, Local Expertise

March 13, 2012 | by Lacy Edney 


RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Rio is well known for its beaches, caipirinhas, Carnival, and of course the classic sounds of samba. Yet while travel agencies around the world can get you to Brazil, there are two Rio-based groups that offer the local expertise to provide an experience beyond the ordinary. 


Travelers seeking secluded beaches, tailor-made travel itineraries and VIP treatment should check out Dehouche. The British duo Henry Madden and Paul Irvine made the decision to start their business while on Rio’s Ipanema Beach in 2003, caipirinhas in hand. 


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Friday, March 16, 2012

TripAdvisor Personalized for 100 Million Travelers


Newton, MASS- TripAdvisor®, the world’s largest travel site*, today announced that it is also the world’s largest social travel site.  To date, more than 100 million travelers have received a personalized experience, allowing them to engage first with their own Facebook friends’ reviews and opinions when planning a trip on TripAdvisor.(1)
With more than 60 million reviews and opinions on the site, TripAdvisor has a wealth of travel planning insights from its community.  With the additional insights from friends, impacting over 100 million travelers to date, TripAdvisor has made travel planning easier, more social, and more trusted.  A Nielsen study(2) stated that 76% of respondents trust recommendations from people they know the most.
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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

From Cities to Resorts, Travel Marketers Flock to Pinterest

Feb 28, 2012 | by Kate Kaye
Pinterest has become the trendiest new destination for the travel industry. From city tourism bureaus to hotel companies and travel publishers, the photo collection and sharing site is yet another social spot online for tourism marketers to spread their messages - in this case, visual ones.
"I knew it would have some legs especially from the tourism industry side of things," said Karen Fashana, marketing manager for Visit Buffalo Niagara, who just started using Pinterest a couple weeks ago. "It's a very visual platform and travel lends itself well to that."
Read full article

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Accor celebrates its 150th hotel in Brazil

Brazil's economic boom (it is now the world's sixth largest economy, ahead of Great Britain) is pulling Latin America in its wake and it is clearly one of the world's most dynamic emerging regions alongside Asia. With 900 million travelers a year, it remains one of the Group's development priorities and indeed, Accor has just celebrated the opening of its 150th hotel in Brazil, the Novotel Porto Alegre Aeroporto.

This symbolic milestone is the crowning achievement of 34 years of continuous growth. And today, the pace of this growth is accelerating. In 2011, Accor opened no less than 9 hotels in Brazil, or the equivalent of 1,300 rooms. By 2015, the network should boast 250 Brazilian establishments as confirmed by Roland de Bonadona, Accor's Chief Operating Officer for Latin America: "Brazil is currently experiencing a period propitious to economic activity in general and to the hotel industry in particular. GDP growth causes an immediate increase in demand and boosts the development of the hotel industry".



Read full article

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Fox News headline today warns about spring break travel in Mexico

Feb 14, 2012 | by Stephanie Abrams' 

Fox News has released a story with the headline: US Warns About Travel to Mexico as Spring Break Looms.

In paragraph 12 of the story, the Fox news story states:

“There were also no warnings for the states that are home to Cancun and Cabo San Lucas, two popular tourist destinations for Americans.”

The layout of the release that they sent out which combined a seductive photo of young ladies in their bikinis on a beach with the headline warning of danger in Mexico has the impact that they clearly desired to create. The story that Fox News wants to tell is delivered in the juxtaposition of the heavy warning and the unsuspecting American youth. It is doubtful that the one sentence in paragraph 12 that notes that ALL of the popular tourism destinations in Mexico are excluded from this warning will be read by anyone or that  that one sentence will neutralize the damage done by the headline, photo of the unsuspecting, and the 11 paragraphs that name places that most travelers have never heard of, have no interest in going to and are not the kind of places anybody would choose for a vacation.

Read full article

Monday, February 13, 2012

What Does the Mexico Travel Advisory Warning Really Mean?


By Nationally syndiated radio show host Stephanie Abrams 
www.sabrams.com

Here we go again! The news media are reporting that there is a travel advisory for US citizens issued by the State Department warning travelers to “defer non-essential travel,” and “exercise caution” in their travels to Mexico.  You will hear this sound byte and see crawlers across the screen that will leave you with a clear message: Don’t go to Mexico if you want to be safe.


The problem with this kind of slap-dash reporting is that nothing has really changed! No blanket statement has been made by the US State Department condemning travel to Mexico as unsafe. The 10 page document lists the states and regions within those states in Mexico that need to be avoided. What has not changed is that the dangerous regions are, for the most part, the area along the US border where drug runners have been carrying on for about forever and a variety of areas that have nothing to do with regions where tourists go! 

Mexico is enormous and the same logic one applies to not cancelling a trip to Manhattan because there was a drug bust in Brooklyn should apply. Unfortunately, news media won’t cut Mexico a break! So if you don’t delve into the report, you’ll come away from the evening news with the impression that Mexico should not be in your travel until further notice.

So that’s why I’m here! My self-imposed job is to set the record straight.

I have listed below quotes from the US government website report titled, “Travel Warning: US Department of State; Bureau of Consular Affairs” on Mexico issued on February 8, 2012, which note the places in Mexico that do NOT have a travel warning, advisory, ‘don’t go there’ ruling from the US government:

Friday, February 10, 2012

Carnival announces special South America, Panama Canal voyages in 2013

Feb 09, 2012 | by Joe Pike

Carnival Cruise Lines recently announced several exciting itineraries for the 2013, including voyages to South America and the Panama Canal.

Next spring, the company will reposition Carnival Miracle to the West Coast following a special Panama Canal voyage, and bring Carnival Splendor to New York, following three spectacular South America cruises.

Read full article

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Bookt launches InstaManager™ multilingual

Feb 02, 2012 - Bookt LLC, a pioneer in cloud-based technology solutions for the professional vacation rental manager, announces another new feature for InstaManagers in 2012 – the ability to add multiple international languages for all current and new InstaManager FLEX clients as an affordable upgrade.

“Everyone knows that travel is global,” said Robert Käll, CEO of Bookt. “And data from both the US and EU shows overwhelmingly that for travel search and purchases, consumers prefer their own language. That means a full language translation of the entire website including all property descriptions and booking screens.”

“We think many US-based vacation rental companies will obviously think of Spanish first,” said Käll. “There is a huge first-mover advantage for a Vacation Rental Manager to truly standout online in their local market,” he added, pointing out that content targeting the large Hispanic travel community can many times reign supreme in the various Spanish versions of Google and other search engines. German, Portuguese, French and Italian are also popular options, but even languages with non-latin alphabets like Korean and Russian can be accommodated. And for this upgrade, Bookt has made it easy and affordable – less than a thousand dollars for each new international site hosted on a unique domain.

InstaManager FLEX is a groundbreaking product combining powerful vacation rental manager software with tailored marketing distribution through FlipKey and TripAdvisor, with pricing starting at $1 with additional fees tied exclusively to a client’s booking success. Since 2007, Bookt has successfully served a fast growing global network of vacation rental managers. With the introduction of InstaManager FLEX and continual rollout of new features like Multilingual and last month’s launch of Mobile Web, Bookt anticipates accelerated growth and rising market prominence. Learn more at: instamanager.com.

About Bookt
Bookt is a leader in cloud based solutions for vacation rental managers, hoteliers, innkeepers, and larger travel organizations in the lodging industry. Bookt’s software and integrated marketing services make specialty lodging companies more effective with activities that directly drive their revenue, manage resources, and provide business control. Our flagship product, InstaManager, is delivered in partnership with TripAdvisor targeting the $85B Vacation Rental Industry. Sophisticated PMS, CRS, CRM, CMS, distribution and back-office functionality is delivered through the cloud to customers in over 31 countries on 5 continents. Learn more at www.bookt.com.

SOURCE: Bookt

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Record number of americans now hold Passports

Jan 30, 2012 | by Andrew Bender

When I was a college kid backpacking through Europe, my European fellow travelers were aghast that so few Americans held a passport, while passports were virtually de rigueur for citizens across the pond. “What are Americans afraid of?” one even asked me.

Times have changed. “More Americans have passports now than ever before,” says Ken Chavez, spokesperson for the Bureau of Consular Affairs at the US State Department. Over one-third of the population to be exact, or nearly 110 million out of 313 million Americans. That’s more than double the number of US passports in circulation in 2000 (48 million) and around 15 times 1989’s 7 million. At that last number (under 3 percent of Americans), you can sort of understand why my European traveling buddies were scandalized.

Read full article

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Brazil air travel triples since 2002

Jan 26, 2012 | by Marco Sibaja

BRASILIA, Brazil (AP) — Demand for flights in Brazil has nearly tripled in the past decade, authorities said Wednesday. That is straining a system that is under pressure to prepare for the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympics.

Brazil’s civil aviation agency said demand for air travel rose 194 percent in 10 years. Demand in 2011 alone increased 16 percent over the previous year.

In 2002, airlines flew 34.3 million passengers on flights originating in Brazil. That rose to 107.8 million last year, the agency reported.

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Thursday, January 19, 2012

Benchmark Hospitality International adds Eldorado Hotel & Spa to management portfolio

Jan 19, 2012

Benchmark Hospitality International announces the addition of Eldorado Hotel & Spa to its portfolio of destination properties. Located in Santa Fe, New Mexico, one of the southwest’s most vibrant cities, Eldorado Hotel & Spa is the perfect embodiment of the destination’s enchanting spirit, where Native American, Hispanic and Anglo cultures merge. Alex Cabanas, president business development & finance, made the announcement.

Read full article

Monday, January 16, 2012

Coffee tourism in Latin America

Jan 15, 2012 | by Lisa Rogak

These days, many people are traveling to places specifically to learn about the food and drink they consume on a regular basis back home. Whether exploring a favorite wine region or a cherished food, the choices are vast.

And now, coffee lovers can do likewise throughout Latin America. The good news is that coffee tourism exists all throughout the region in the form of tastings and tours. You can even stay at an inn or B&B where the beans for the coffee you sip at breakfast came from the bushes right outside your window.

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Friday, January 13, 2012

Cheapflights.com readies for the Red Carpet

BOSTON, MA, Jan 12, 2012 (MARKETWIRE via COMTEX) -- With less than 10 days to go until the kick-off of Robert Redford's world famous Sundance Film Festival, the film buffs here at Cheapflights.com, the online leader in finding and publishing travel deals, are all abuzz. To help everyone gear up for the 2012 movie season, we have compiled our Top 10 Film Festivals Around the World. A one-of-a-kind experience, film festivals offer the opportunity to explore the art of filmmaking with other enthusiasts, listen to the creators talk about their work, visit an exciting destination and, of course, spot a celeb or two.

Find out what makes our team's favorite cinema events unique with our list of Top 10 Film Festivals Around the World. If you're keen to be among the first to screen some of 2012's great new flicks, below are five film fests that you can catch over the next few months.

-- Sundance Film Festival -- Park City, Utah, United States - Sundance
Film Festival started out in 1978 as an event designed to attract more
filmmakers to Utah while staying away from the overpowering Hollywood
scene. Thirty-four years later, Sundance is the largest independent
film festival in the United States, exhibiting feature-length films,
documentaries, shorts, and animation while fostering dialogues among
film enthusiasts. This year, the festival will run from Jan. 19-29 in
Park City, Utah, showcasing 200 films whittled down from nearly 9,000
submissions. Can't make it to the big event? On Jan 26, nine movie
theaters across the United States will be hosting a filmmaker and his
or her work as part of Sundance Film Festival USA, so you may be able
to participate in the festivities wherever you are. Search and compare
cheap flights to Park City.

-- International Film Festival Rotterdam -- Rotterdam, the Netherlands -
Though it receives less tourist traffic than its neighboring city,
Amsterdam, Rotterdam is a modern representation of Dutch culture, and
its annual film festival is constantly paving the way for all genres
of innovative and thought-provoking cinema. This year's event will run
from Jan. 25 to Feb. 5, and will encompass 19 screening venues --
upwards of 350,000 viewers are expected to attend. Rotterdam attendees
are passionate movie-goers, so program directors make a point of
stripping down the superfluous aspects of film, like commercials and
trailers, for an untarnished viewing experience. Search and compare
cheap flights to the Netherlands.

-- Guadalajara Film Festival -- Guadalajara, Mexico - Considered the most
significant film affair in Latin America, Guadalajara Film Festival is
an important cultural event, showcasing Mexican and Latino talent
alongside other international works of cinematic art. Thanks to
Guadalajara Film Festival, Latin American film has become a competitor
in the global film industry. From March 2-12, over 100,000 film lovers
are expected to flood the streets and theaters of Guadalajara, viewing
close to 200 films. While not as chaotic as Mexico City, Guadalajara
is a destination perfect for exploring colonial history, enjoying the
Mexican culture, shopping street markets and savoring traditional
regional cuisine. Search and compare cheap flights to Mexico.

-- Hong Kong International Film Festival -- Hong Kong, China - The
perfect blend of East Asian culture and a thriving global market, Hong
Kong is a popular destination for tourists from all over the world.
It's no wonder that the Hong Kong International Film Festival has
become one of the largest in the world, and has bridged the gap
between Asian cinema and the global film industry. This year's event
will take place from March 21 to April 5, showcasing more than 330
titles from 50 countries to an expected 600,000 viewers. Spread among
more than 11 venues all around Hong Kong, including the Space Museum
and City Hall, visitors get the chance to witness the latest works
while exploring the vibrant city. Search and compare cheap flights to
China.

-- Berlin International Film Festival -- Berlin, Germany - One of the
most renowned film festivals in the world, the Berlin International
Film Festival (also known as Berlinale) combines the glamor of
filmmaking -- parties, red carpet, high fashion -- with the
appreciation of cinematic art in a variety of genres. Divided into 10
separate sections, highlighting areas like experimental and
avant-garde works, shorts geared towards younger generations, films
focused around culinary themes and several others, there's a place for
all film admirers at Berlinale. This year's festival will kick off on
Feb. 9 and last 10 days. It is expected that visitors from more than
115 countries will be in attendance to screen and discuss a variety of
international films. Search and compare cheap flights to Germany.

Planning to travel later in the year? The following five favorite film fests are celebrated in cities between May through September: Cannes International Film Festival -- Cannes, France; Rooftop Films -- New York, New York; Toronto International Film Festival -- Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Venice International Film Festival -- Venice, Italy, and the East End Film Festival -- East London, United Kingdom. To find out more about these festivals and to read the complete list of Cheapflights.com's Top 10 Film Festivals Around the World, visit www.cheapflights.com/travel-tips/film-festivals-around-the-world/ .

About Cheapflights Media 
 Cheapflights Media is an international media network helping over 11 million visitors a month find top travel deals. Our Cheapflights brand was launched in 1996 and pioneered the online comparison of flight deals for users. Today, users compare a wide range of deals from hundreds of partners including online travel agents, consolidators and airlines to find the very best flight deals. With a mission to be the starting point for travel, Cheapflights works to deliver the industry's best airfare bargains, expert tips and inspiration. There are currently Cheapflights sites in the U.K., U.S., Canada, Germany, Australia & New Zealand, France, Italy and Spain. For more information, visit www.cheapflights.com . Our newest brand, Momondo, is a leading travel search engine for finding comprehensive worldwide pricing and availability on airfares. Winner of several awards, the site is ideal for users on specific travel schedules. For more information, visit www.momondo.com .

SOURCE: Cheapflights.com

Monday, January 9, 2012

New Disneyland holiday event targets Latino market

Jan 06, 2012 | by Sarah Tully

For the extended season, Disneyland officials decided to try out something new -- a three-day celebration aimed at a Latino-focused holiday.

On the first day Friday (today), officials were surprised at the amount of media interest in the Dia de Reyes event: Fourteen Spanish-language television outlets, both international and national, either broadcast on site or aired live segments from Disneyland. One English language station, KTTV, also came out, as well as a few print journalists for a morning media demonstration.

Read full article

Monday, January 2, 2012

Discovering Uruguay beaches

Dec 29, 2011 | by Michael Luongo

There are a few Uruguayan beach villages like this that retain an almost unspoiled, undeveloped character. They tend to attract the young and bohemian, along with Montevideo residents seeking to disconnect from modern life on vacation. Yet there are always threats to Eden, as the word gets out and developers smell profit.

Read full article

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Costa Rican politics may throw ecotourism under the bus

Dec 19, 2011 | by John Perry

Known as one of the originators of eco-tourism, and appearing a very creditable third in a world index of sustainability, Costa Rica has a reputation to maintain. Its tourism industry, based around the country's slogan 'No artificial ingredients', is worth over £2bn annually [US$3,109,400,000], more than its coffee and banana exports combined. Though the smallest country in Central America, it receives the most tourists. Many of these are attracted not only by its forests and beaches but by its environmental reputation: you can travel to Costa Rica and feel good about it. As a result, it makes frequent appearances on lists of the top eco-tourist destinations.

Read full article

REDjet looks to new routes

(Jamaica Observer) Low-cost Caribbean airline carrier REDjet, which last month began flying from Barbados to Jamaica, Trinidad, Guyana and Antigua, is looking to add new routes as it begins to fine-tune its operations.

On November 20, REDjet launched its inaugural flight from Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago, to Kingston Jamaica. The next day it flew from Trinidad to Barbados and the following day it flew nonstop direct from Guyana to Antigua, the first time that route has ever been flown.

Read full article

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Cambria suites Oklahoma City & Suenos Hospitality named Full Service Hotel of the Year by the Latino Hotel Association

SILVER SPRING, Md. and OKLAHOMA CITY, Dec. 13, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Cambria Suites hotel of Oklahoma City, owned by Suenos Hospitality, was recently named the 2011 Full Service Hotel of the Year by the Latino Hotel Association as part of the organization's annual Estrella Awards.

As the owner of the winning property, John Lopez, owner of Suenos Hospitality LLC, was present to accept the award at a recent ceremony. Mr. Lopez's Cambria Suites Oklahoma City hotel was named as this year's full service hotel award recipient due to the overwhelmingly positive guest comments for the property. The hotel was selected from among seven other nominated properties in its segment.

"We are proud and honored to be recognized with this award, which was made possible by the outstanding team we have in place at our Oklahoma City property — the entire staff shares this award for its unwavering commitment to customer service each and every day," said Mr. Lopez. "From the moment our guests enter the hotel, they are treated as family — we want them to think of Cambria Suites as their home away from home."

"This recognition for Mr. Lopez and the Cambria Suites Oklahoma City is truly a testament to the high caliber of this brand and its developers across the board," said Brian Parker, vice president of emerging markets and new business development for Choice Hotels International, Inc., franchisor of the Cambria Suites brand. "At Choice Hotels, we are strongly committed to the development of Cambria Suites as a brand as well as to our ongoing efforts in increasing the presence of Hispanic hoteliers throughout our system and in the industry overall."
The Estrella Awards were announced by the Latino Hotel Association, with partners Freeman Pulse, at the organization's annual convention in Las Vegas last month. The awards are the LHA's top honors bestowed upon the best in the hospitality industry. According to the organization, they serve as a constant incentive within the top national and international executives in hotel and property management companies.

"John's early success in the lodging industry is attributed to his vast business knowledge and surrounding himself with hotel industry experts such as Choice Hotels International and HP Properties," said Angela Gonzalez-Rowe, president of the Latino Hotel Association. "The Latino Hotel & Restaurant Association hopes to gain the interest of more Latinos in the United States to closely look at hotel investments as a way to diversify their investment portfolios and become actively involved in the ownership and management of hotels."

Mr. Lopez, former chairman of Lopez Foods, the nation's largest Hispanic meat manufacturer, is one of the country's most well-recognized and admired Hispanic businessmen, having received numerous awards and recognitions, including Hispanic Business magazine's coveted "Entrepreneur of the Year."

About Cambria Suites
Cambria Suites offers contemporary, upscale accommodations at affordable prices. Designed as a lifestyle hotel brand, Cambria Suites offers more than just a place to sleep at night. It features a larger lobby to give guests a more social atmosphere, all-suite rooms that are larger than standard hotel rooms and include a separate living, working and sleeping space, providing business and leisure travelers a haven to relax, socialize and network. There are currently 18 properties open across the country.

About Choice Hotels
Choice Hotels International, Inc. (NYSE: CHH) franchises more than 6,100 hotels, representing more than 490,000 rooms, in the United States and more than 30 other countries and territories. As ofSeptember 30, 2011, 430 hotels were under construction, awaiting conversion or approved for development in the United States, representing more than 35,000 rooms, and 94 hotels, representing approximately 8,700 rooms, were under construction, awaiting conversion or approved for development in more than 20 other countries and territories. The company's Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Quality, Sleep Inn, Clarion, Cambria Suites, MainStay Suites, Suburban Extended Stay Hotel, Econo Lodge and Rodeway Inn brands serve guests worldwide. In addition, via its Ascend Collection membership program, travelers in the United States, Canada and the Caribbean have upscale lodging options at historic, boutique and unique hotels.
Additional corporate information may be found on the Choice Hotels International, Inc. Web site, which may be accessed at http://www.choicehotels.com.
Choice Hotels, Choice Hotels International, Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Quality, Sleep Inn, Clarion, Cambria Suites, MainStay Suites, Suburban Extended Stay Hotel, Econo Lodge, Rodeway Inn and Ascend Collection are proprietary trademarks and service marks of Choice Hotels International.
© 2011 Choice Hotels International, Inc. All rights reserved.

SOURCE Choice Hotels International, Inc.

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