All-new lounge concept at Vancouver International Airport introduces five-star guest comforts
(Vancouver, 13 February 2014) After a five-month renovation, Plaza Premium Lounge (PPL) has entered a new era with the re-opening of its flagship International Departures Lounge at Vancouver International Airport (YVR). Centrally located in the airport’s International Departures Hall and measuring 6,700 ft², the expansive retreat will be the largest pay-per-use lounge in Canada.
Mr. Song Hoi-see, Founder and CEO of Plaza Premium Lounge Management Limited, said: “We are excited to bring our latest generation lounge design to Vancouver. We have partnerships with many of the airlines providing flight service to Asia and Europe and we are certain their valued passengers will appreciate the distinctive design and luxurious amenities found within the lounge as will our many other guests who use the lounge”.
The lounge, designed by leading Hong Kong designer Kinney Chan of Kinney Chan & Associates, is divided into several zones to provide travellers with multiple experiences and choices. Beyond the luxurious reception area, guests enter the main lounge and are greeted by a variety of seating configurations and a sleek, sophisticated design.
Catering to single travellers, couples and large parties, guests can choose to take a seat at one of the comfortable sofa chairs, share a communal table or appreciate the panoramic view of the runway through expansive windows. While the neutral palette conveys warmth, the designer has taken full advantage of the full-length windows, inviting an abundance of natural light into the space.
Throughout the lounge and at the fully-equipped computer workstations, executives can stay connected with the lounge’s complimentary Wi-Fi, charge up their devices in one of the many power sockets or complete a transaction at the private workstations.
Plaza Premium Lounge also introduces a new dining concept in the dining areas. Catering to discerning diners with an appetite for variety, two separate dining areas comprise a range of food and beverage options, from a salad bar and buffet area serving a range of healthy food options, to a noodle bar serving Hong Kong-style Fish Ball Noodle Soup. A feast for the senses, the dining areas are designed so guests can interact with the friendly staff at the various food
stations and indulge in a selection of appetising delicacies. Ensuring that guests sample a broad variety, the menu will be regularly updated.
Visitors preparing for a long-haul flight or transit passengers midway through their journey can freshen up in one of the two showers, each one stocked with the full set of amenities, or take a nap in one of three nap rooms.
Plaza Premium Lounge welcomes passengers travelling on any airline irrespective of fare class. Single Lounge Visit starts at CAD 35 (plus tax) for 2 hours lounge use and include full use of the lounge facilities and all food and beverages. Showers, VIP room and nap rooms are charged separately.
“For today’s discerning passengers, their trip begins at the airport, and we know that our customers are going to appreciate the premium amenities offered by the beautifully updated Plaza Premium Lounge” said Tony Gugliotta, Senior Vice President, Marketing & Business Development. The lounge is a welcome addition to the selection of 160-plus shops, services and restaurants available to YVR passengers.”
About Plaza Premium Lounge Management Limited
Plaza Premium Lounge Management Limited is the management company and shared service provider for Plaza Premium Lounge Network worldwide. With more than 15 years of experience, a results-oriented track record and proprietary knowledge operating and managing airport VIP lounges, the network is directing expansion plans through multi-location operations in major international airports in the world.
Plaza Premium Lounge is the world’s first commercial VIP lounge open to airport users irrespective of airline or class of travel. Headquartered in Hong Kong, the company now operates more than 110 locations in 29 international airports – Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai (Hongqiao and Pudong), Guangzhou, Macau (opening Q2 2014), Kuala Lumpur (KLIA2 opening Q2 2014), Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Penang, Langkawi, Johor, Singapore, Sydney (opening Q2 2014), New Delhi, Mumbai (opening Q2 2014), Hyderabad, Bangalore (opening Q1 2014), Malé, Abu Dhabi (opening Q1 2014), Muscat, Riyadh, Jeddah, Dammam, Madinah, London (Heathrow) (opening June 2014), Toronto, Vancouver and Edmonton.
As the first airport lounge network to achieve ISO 9001:2008 certification, Plaza Premium Lounge is committed to providing consistently high service quality and continual improvement for our valued customers. By putting into action the best ideas and practices from across the network and around the world, the company is focused on providing our customers with innovative and quality products and services. For more information about Plaza Premium Lounge Network worldwide, please visit: http://www.plaza-network.com/
Located in the heart of SouthWest Germany, Stuttgart Airport is the perfect starting point for visitors as they can connect within minutes from daily direct flights to hotels, cultural experiences and beautiful nearby towns. Many gourmands know the airport as the home to Europe’s only Michelin-starred restaurant, “top-air,” a popular destination on its own merit. With daily flights from Newark and Atlanta, Americans are within a hop, step and a jump from exploring the beautiful world of SouthWest Germany.
Being the hometown of Mercedes-Benz and Porsche, Stuttgart is not only world famous for its car industry but also for its two world class museums along with the Benz House, the V-8 hotel next to the vintage car showroom, Meilenwerk. Sprinkled throughout the state are the Formula One racetrack, the Hockenheimring, and world class car collections. Within 30 minutes of leaving the airport, visitors can enjoy a local wine, beer or the famous Black Forest cake and coffee at a sidewalk café while famous tourist attractions, including the Black Forest, Heidelberg, Lake Constance and the culinary oasis of Baiersbronn are only a bit further away by train or car.
Stuttgart’s shopping is a great delight for all budgets with a great variety of gifts and items from the big department stores to individual boutiques selling unique gifts and unusual clothing that you won’t find anywhere else. Old and new stores sit side by side some selling local, handmade items and others that have an international presence. Together they offer a great combination with an immense variety and prices where you can splurge and save.
One of the largest shopping streets in Europe, the Königsstraße, is located right in the center of the town, connecting Stuttgart´s picturesque castle with the main square, the Schlossplatz. The maze of side streets are home to many elegant shops interspersed with coffee shops and cafes. In the evenings, this delightful international shopping flair is enhanced by world class cultural experiences at Stuttgart Ballet, late night at the museums, the opera or a musical.
Stuttgart Airport is well connected to the United States with Delta Airlines providing daily flight service from Atlanta and with United Airlines connecting from Newark/New York. With the broad network throughout the U.S. and Atlanta and Newark as hubs, visitors can reach Stuttgart from nearly every corner of the country. Upon landing, the clear and logical layout of the terminals and the short distances within the airport are appealing to visitors as are the wide range of shops that offer fashion pick-me-ups or typical gifts from the region. Cozy bars, restaurants and snack stands are sprinkled throughout and enhance the hospitable impression that your vacation actually begins and ends at the airport. The mix of an international flair on the one hand and a warm regional charm on the other hand is characteristic for Stuttgart Airport. Even so, the airport is the sixth largest in Germany with 9.6 million passengers in 2013 and up to 400 flights daily offered to more than 100 destinations. Start planning your trip today, SouthWest Germany is waiting for you!
For further information about Stuttgart Airport please visit www.stuttgart-airport.com
EasyJet Holidays is partnering with Tui Travel’s Hotelopia to sell package holidays in seven European countries.
The tour operator will re-launch its UK website and open new sites in France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Switzerland from May 1 when its three-year deal with the Lowcosttravel group ends.
All bookings will be fully ATOL protected as easyJet Holidays, with Hotelopia holding the ATOL and trading under the EasyJet Holidays name.
In addition to the beach/ ski holidays and city breaks, easyJet Holidays will add a brand new range of activity holidays such as cycling and golfing breaks.
Excursions will also be on offer in major destinations.
easyJet holidays and Hotelopia will be recruiting for up to 100 administrative, sales and call centre roles to be based from the new offices in Palma, Mallorca.
Mandy Round, general manager of easyJet holidays, said the deal would lead to an improved hotel portfolio, more user friendly websites and an efficient booking process.
She said: “Over the course of the partnership not only can easyJet holidays’ customers look forward to a better selection of handpicked properties but will also benefit from bespoke designed deals and exclusive offers.”
The company’s deal with Hotelopia will extend to the end of the summer 2017 season.
EasyJet Holidays launched three years ago selling accommodation using easyJet flights, with bookings handled by Lowcost beds and financial protection provided by insurance.
Tim Buckman, European managing director for the Lowcosttravel group said: “We are delighted with the growth and success of the easyJet holidays business over the last 3 years.
“The excellent relationships we have built with both easyJet and Hotelbeds will remain and be part of our future growth.”
Beginning April 1st Finnair will dedicate aircraft with full-flat seats on flights to Tokyo and New York.
New York, NY, March 10, 2014 – Beginning on April 1, 2014 Finnair’s flights to Tokyo and New York will feature aircraft equipped with full-flat seats available in Business Class. Additionally, Finnair will offer full-flat seats on flights to Beijing beginning on May 1, 2014 and as of June 1, 2014 the full-flat allocation also extends to Hanoi, Hong Kong, Nagoya, Osaka and Shanghai. The new seats are a result of Finnair’s 29 million-euro program to retrofit most of its wide-body fleet of Airbus A330 and A340 aircraft.
The Zodiac Seats UK Vantage model seats, which are already in use on Finnair’s four newest Airbus A330s, are designed to provide a fully-flat bed measuring 79 inches in length and 23 inches in width. The fully adjustable seats also come with an individual reading light, adjustable head rest, mood lights and a range of inflight entertainment options.
“We believe that full-flat seats are the new quality standard for long-haul business travel,” says Allister Paterson, Finnair’s Chief Commercial Officer. “A promise of comfort and quality to key business destinations will help make Finnair a very compelling option in business travel, particularly between Europe and Asia.”
After the full-flat retrofit program is complete, all of Finnair’s long-haul Airbus fleet will have full-flat seats in Business Class with the exception of three older aircraft. Due to maintenance or other technical reasons, designated full-flat routes may still be served by these other aircraft, which feature angled lie-flat seating in Business Class. These three aircraft will be the first to be removed from the fleet as next-generation Airbus A350 XWBs begin arriving in 2015.
Finnair currently operates 15 Airbus A330 and A340 aircraft in its wide-body fleet, serving a network of 15 long-haul destinations in Asia and North America. A further 11 Airbus A350 XWBs (with an option for 8 more) are due to arrive beginning in H2 2015, which will help the airline double its revenue from Asian destinations by 2020. Finnair will be the first European airline to fly with the state of the art A350.
Finnair Gallery: http://gallery.finnair.com
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Finnair Group website: www.finnairgroup.com
Finnair is specialized in fast connections between Europe and Asia via Helsinki. The airline carries more than eight million passengers annually and connects 13 cities in Asia with more than 60 destinations in Europe. The airline, a pioneer in sustainable flying, operates a young, modern fleet and has the highest score of a publically disclosing airline in the worldwide Carbon Disclosure Project. The only Nordic carrier with a 4-star Skytrax ranking, Finnair also has won the World Airline Award for Best Airline Northern Europe for the past three years running. Finnair is a member of oneworld, the world’s leading quality alliance.
Hilton Worldwide and DoubleTree by Hilton announced the opening of the new DoubleTree by Hilton San Francisco Airport North on Thursday.
Located 2.5 miles from San Francisco International Airport and four miles from downtown San Francisco, the contemporary 210-room hotel boasts sweeping views of the San Francisco Bay and Marina, as well as convenient access to the area’s most popular attractions, including Alcatraz, Chinatown and the Moscone Convention Center. DoubleTree by Hilton San Francisco Airport North is owned by Summit Hotel Trs 114, LLC and managed by Stonebridge Companies.
“We are delighted to expand our presence in San Francisco and deliver the upscale, full-service hotel experience that both business and leisure travelers are seeking in one of the most vibrant cities in the world,” said John Greenleaf, global head, DoubleTree by Hilton. “We look forward to catering to guests at our newest property and delivering the globally-recognized service culture guests have come to expect from the DoubleTree by Hilton name — starting with the warm chocolate chip cookie presented to each guest upon arrival.”
DoubleTree by Hilton San Francisco Airport North complete with a fresh design, featuring earth tones, granite and wood fixtures and new furniture throughout the guest rooms and public areas.
The hotel offers 4,200 square feet of flexible meeting and event space — including five meeting rooms that can host 10 to 160 people — and a 1,920-square-foot premier ballroom.
At Xebec Restaurant & Lounge, guests can enjoy cocktails and savor contemporary California cuisine prepared with a Mediterranean influence, all while admiring sunset views over the bay.
The hotel also features a complimentary 24-hour fitness center, an indoor swimming pool, and a 24-hour business center, as well as direct access to scenic outdoor trails and jogging paths. Complimentary WiFi is available throughout the hotel’s public areas, meeting rooms and guest rooms. A complimentary shuttle service to and from the airport sweetens the deal.
“From its stunning bayside location to a broad array of essential services, DoubleTree by Hilton San Francisco Airport North offers a first-rate lodging experience,” said Jason Dorfman, general manager, Stonebridge Companies. “We are delighted to provide the exemplary service engrained in the DoubleTree by Hilton culture.”
A visit starts with a warm chocolate chip cookie. Other DoubleTree by Hilton brand exclusives include an assortment of gourmet in-room tea and coffee choices from The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, a refreshing array of CITRON body care products by Crabtree & Evelyn, and an industry-recognized service culture built around the idea of CARE, which stands for Create a Rewarding Experience for guests, team members and the community.
Each guest room and suite is equipped with a series of modern facilities and supplies, a 42-inch HDTV, a refrigerator, a large desk, wireless Internet access and the signature Doubletree by Hilton SweetDreams bed.
Hilton HHonors members will be able to earn and redeem points with their stay. To mark the opening, the hotel will offer double Hilton HHonors points on the best available rate through June 6.
Rail Journeys Through Thailand, Malaysia, Laos, and Singapore
EOE in MalaysiaPresidential CompartmentElephants exiting river – Thailand_Kanchanaburi 184 (83 of 120)
The Eastern & Oriental Express kicked off its 2014 season in February. In addition to the year-round schedule of classic journeys between Bangkok and Singapore, E&O offers Chronicles of South East Asia, “off-the-beaten-track” itineraries in Thailand, Malaysia, Laos, and Singapore.
Both classic and Chronicle trips feature excursions and overnight, off-train experiences, such as visits to traditional villages to view local ceremonies, guided tours of vibrant Kuala Lumpur, and a day to explore Vientiane, famous for its French colonial and Lao architecture. There is no better way to see the region, from major cities to remote countryside, than from the comforts of this majestic train.
NOTE TO JOURNALISTS: As of March 15, 2014, Orient Express Hotels & Resorts is changing its corporate name to Belmond. Please note, too, that the name Eastern & Oriental Express remains in force as the official name of the train.
Itinerary: The train runs from Bangkok to Singapore and back via Kuala Lumpur, with 17 departures throughout the year. The train crosses the River Kwai and the schedule showcases George Town, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its colonial architecture.
Departure dates: March-December
Duration: One to three nights
Rates: Starting at $2,170 per person
Chronicles of South East Asia
Fables of the Hills
Itinerary: From Singapore, the train traverses Malaysia’s Cameron highlands and then runs up Thailand’s Southern Peninsula to Bangkok. Excursions include a boat trip across the exquisite Bukit Merah Lake in Malaysia and a visit to the Monkey Training College in Surat Thani, Thailand.
Departure dates: June 22 and October 19
Duration: 7 days/6 nights
Rates: Starting at $9,200 per person
Itinerary: Going from Bangkok to Chaing Mai, the train sweeps through the largely untouched landscape of northern Thailand. Visit a traditional Isan village to learn about local culture, see traditional matmee cloth weaving, and participate in the bai sii ceremony, in which sacred threads are tied around the wrist. The Isan believe the threads offer protection on a journey.
Departure date: November 14
Duration: 7 Days/6 Nights
Rates: Starting at $9,200 per person
Tales of Laos
Itinerary: Departing Bangkok, the train heads north to Vientiane, the capital of Laos. Along the way it stops in Phimai, one of Thailand’s most important Khmer temple complexes, and Khao Yai, a center of the Thai wine industry.
Departure date: October 10
Duration: 4 Days/3 Nights
Rates: Starting at $4,000 per person
To book, contact Orient-Express Centre, The Americas, Trains & Cruises at 800-524-2420 or email email@example.com.
Orient-Express (NYSE: OEH, www.orient-express.com) , the name behind an elite collection of travel experiences, first came into being in 1883 as one of the world’s most exciting and indulgent train journeys. Today that evocative name embraces hotels, cruises, and other luxury rail adventures in 24 countries across five continents. The Company has offered exceptional luxury travel experiences since 1976, when it first purchased Hotel Cipriani in Venice and then, shortly afterwards, recreated the celebrated Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, linking London, Paris, and Venice, along with other European cities. Today, the company owns or part-owns and manages 50 businesses, 41 of which are highly acclaimed hotels, each unique in style, from the Mount Nelson in Cape Town and Rio’s Copacabana Palace to the Grand Hotel Europe in St. Petersburg and Maroma Resort & Spa on Mexico’s Riviera Maya. There are six luxury tourist trains, two river cruise operations, and ‘21’, one of New York’s most iconic restaurants.
Vacation Express introduced $250 air credits for travelers who book minimum five-night air inclusive stays at All Inclusive Hard Rock Hotels.
Participating properties include Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Punta Cana, Hard Rock Hotel Cancun or Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya from Vacation Express.
To qualify, stays must be booked by April 5 for travel through Dec. 23.
It’s a good time to travel to South Africa because it’s not the high season, and South African Airways Vacations, the tour operator and packager for the national carrier of South Africa, is giving its Cape and Safari Escape package a promotional push by discounting it 10 percent. This is a discount from a price that already compares favorably with the value received for comparable money almost anywhere in the world.
SAA Vacations’ Cape and Safari Escape package has been reduced from its regular starting price of the package at $3,820 per person by $380, bringing the total to $3,440. The package includes three nights at the Vineyard Hotel and Spa in Cape Town with breakfasts included, a full-day tour of the Cape Peninsula and two nights at the Lion Sands River Lodge with all meals and twice daily game drives.
The package includes roundtrip air from New York or Washington D.C., an 8,000-mile trip each way. The buying power of the dollar over the South African rand also boosts the value of this package.
To receive the discounts you must mention the code “CSE10” when booking the package.
Frontier Airlines continued adding new routes this week as it launched nonstop service between its Denver, Colo. (DEN), hub and Memphis, Tenn. (MEM) with four weekly nonstop flights. That will expand to a daily nonstop in June.
“We are thrilled to offer nonstop service to Memphis,” Daniel Shurz, Frontier’s senior vice president-Commercial, said in a statement. “We’ve already seen such good demand for these flights that we’re adding more service in June and we know customers will love our friendly service, ultra-low fares, and more choices, and we look forward to welcoming Memphis-area travelers on Frontier flights.”
There is a method to the madness as well. Frontier’s new Memphis service is timed to connect in Denver to popular destinations across the West, including San Francisco, Seattle/Tacoma, Phoenix, San Diego, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and Portland.
“We are excited to add another nonstop flight option for passengers of the Memphis International Airport,” said Scott Brockman, President and CEO of the Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority. “That Frontier has already decided to move from four flights a week initially to daily flights this summer is proof that our market wants and needs this service.”
The schedule for Frontier’s Memphis service began Friday, March 7, and will fly on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday until going daily in June. This service will operate on 138-seat Airbus 319 aircraft. Flight times vary by day of the week. Visit FlyFrontier.com for the full schedule.
Haitian-based carrier Sunrise Airways announced an agreement with Haiti’s Ministry of Tourism to launch a variety of initiatives to increase tourism to the country.
Under the terms of a memorandum of understanding reached recently the airline will work with the tourism ministry to host travel agent fam trips, media visits, travel by potential business development partners and “other interested parties keen on promoting or investing in the country’s tourism industry,” according to a statement.
Tourism sector investment by Haiti’s government and foreign investors exceeds $258 million to date, according to Stéphanie Balmir Villedrouin, Haiti’s minister of tourism, and includes new hotel construction and redevelopment, airport expansion initiatives, hospitality education and training programs, a dedicated tourism police force, and new visitor attraction centers at key historical sites.
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