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ITB Berlin Special Edition - Day Two - 6th MARCH 2014

THE MOST COMFORTABLE FLYING EXPERIENCE Business travel is beginning to look a lot like leisure

Enjoy the sound of silence with noise-cancelling headphones A fully-flat soft mattress made of all natural fibres The soothing aroma of lavender across the cabin



Nothing defines comfort quite like a soft, cosy bed. As the World’s Leading Airline, we make sure our guests enjoy only the most comfortable beddings available high above the clouds. We turned to COCO-MAT® to craft mattresses and pillows that were just the right balance between softness and support, making sure getting some well deserved rest while maintaining a healthy sleeping posture is easy and effortless. Using all-natural fibres like goose down, cotton and Talalay rubber, COCO-MAT® brings an unparalleled level of comfort to our cabins, whether you’re enjoying your fully-flat bed in Pearl Business Class, or the 81-inch bed in your own private Diamond First Class suite. Fly with Etihad and enter a world where sleep is as natural as it is enjoyable.

ITB Berlin Special Edition - Day Two - 6th MARCH 2014




At Etihad, we’re passionate about food. We believe that our guests deserve only the best dining options as we take them to the world’s most exciting destinations. That’s why when you fly with us, you enjoy unforgettable luxuries like a personalised meal prepared by our in-flight chefs in the comfort of your Diamond First Class private suites.

World Travel Awards set for Greek debut World Travel Awards (WTA), the “Oscars of the travel industry”, has unveiled plans to visit Greece for the first time, with Divani Apollon Palace & Thalasso, Athens, set to host its Europe Gala Ceremony on 2nd August 2014.

And just before you tuck in to get some well-deserved location combined with one of the most luxurious warm cup of chamomile with Thalassotherapy centres intea Europe make it a destinaour bedtime drink service. tion for well-being and relaxation.

The WTA organisers highlight the significance of rest, savour a hosting the VIP ceremony in Athens.

The red-carpet evening is being held in partnership with the Greek Tourism Ministry, the Greek National Tourism Organisation, the Association of Greek Tourism Enterprises and Divani Collection Hotels, and will include a gala dinner, top entertainment as well as the presentation of the most coveted awards in the industry.

Graham E Cooke, President & Founder, WTA, says: So ceremony the nextin time you flNiki y, Fotiou, choose the airline that Divani Collec“We are delighted to host our first Marketing & PR Manager, comfort to incredible new heights. Choose Greece, a decision that reflectstakes the crucial contribution Hotels, says: “Divani Apollon Palace & Thalasso tion that tourism makes to theEtihad national economy. The is privileged to host the World Travel Awards Europeand enter a more comfortable world. Greek tourism sector is enjoying a renaissance, with an Gala Ceremony. We are proud to bring this event last year’s double-digit growth predicted to continue for the first time in Greece and offer and impressive in 2014 as it continues to grow market share.” ‘journey’ through Greece to more than 500 travel tourism and hospitality professionals.” He adds: “The selection of our hosts is fundamental to the success of our awards programme, and The Europe Ceremony 2014 will mark the third leg Athens possesses all the ingredients to rise to the of WTA’s Grand Tour, a global search for the world’s challenge of hosting our Europe Ceremony 2014. finest travel brands, which also includes regional As Europe’s oldest city, Athens beautifully balances heats in Dubai, Ecuador and Anguilla. The winners of its 2,500-year history with a vibrant contemporary these regional heats will progress to the Grand Final, which will take place in December 2014. culture scene.”

Guests will also have the opportunity to participate in a full itinerary over the weekend, a “journey through Greece” giving an insight into both its illustrious history and its vibrant contemporary culture.

The ceremony will take place at the luxury beach resort of Divani Apollon Palace & Thalasso. Situated in the exclusive area of Vouliagmeni, just 18km from Athens city centre, the resort’s stunning beachfront

Senior representatives from Europe’s finest travel brands are scheduled to attend WTA’s Europe Gala Ceremony 2014 as they vie to win the most coveted accolade in the industry.

For more info about WTA’s Europe Ceremony 2014 visit

MOMENTUM HOUSE, LOWER ROAD, LONDON SE1 8SJ, UNITED KINGDOM Tel +44 (0) 20 7925 0000 To subscribe to the free daily newsletter or sign up via the website EDITOR (editorial) Christopher O’Toole ADVERTISING CHAIRMAN, CEO Graham Cooke

Gleneagles prepares for Ryder Cup 2014 Gleneagles Hotel is set to play host to the 40th Ryder Cup when the competition returns to the home of golf, Scotland, for only the second time later this year.




Europe will look to defend the trophy they won so spectacularly in 2012 as the competition arrives from September 23rd-28th. Gleneagles Hotel recognised as Scotland’s Leading Resort by the prestigious World Travel Awards - will play host to 24 of the greatest players on the planet led by captains Paul McGinley and Tom Watson. The PGA Centenary Course at Gleneagles Hotel has been redesigned for the event and has been under maintenance since October 2011 to allow for extensive course modifications, devised in consultation with course designer Jack Nicklaus. Over 50,000 tonnes of earth were moved at the course to prepare, with 30,000 square metres of turf laid, and 1,000 tonnes of new sand

used in bunkers. The improvements include the installation of a SubAir system - an aeration and moisture removal system - on all 18 greens in addition to the putting green. Substantial changes have been made to the layout of several holes – with the most dramatic alterations apparent on the 9th and 18th. Drainage in all bunkers has been improved using the “Better Billy Bunker Method” developed at Augusta National Golf Club. Stuart McEwen, Gleneagles’ director of golf, said: “It’s been a challenging but hugely rewarding period for all involved in the redesign of the PGA Centenary Course. We are thrilled with how the golf course is shaping up and the recent changes made will certainly make a big difference, particularly the 18th. By successfully completing

the Ryder Cup course for themselves ahead of the tournament.” ETIHAD AIRWAYS Among those competing for Europe will be Martin Kaymer, who holed the winning putt for the European Ryder Cup Team in 2012, and recently signed up as a Guest Ambassador for Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates. Having won the US PGA Championship in 2010 and the Abu Dhabi HSBC

the redesign changes now, thousands of golfers will be able to enjoy playing the golf course prior to the 2014 Ryder Cup.” With the USA seeking to reclaim the trophy after the drama of Medinah and Europe keen to notch their third victory in a row, you could be there to witness another seismic moment in the history of golf. Scott Fenwick, Golf Courses & Estate Manager, Gleneagles said: “We’re delighted with the PGA Centenary Course after extensive alterations, and are confident that players and spectators alike will respond well to these changes. The work on the

Head over to www.worldgolfawards. com for more on the event. The Gleneagles Hotel was built in 1924 and is situated in 850 acres of beautiful Perthshire countryside, just one hour’s drive from Edinburgh

18th should make for a much more dramatic and challenging hole for players, creating a real risk/reward for those who decide to go for the hole in two. For tournament golf, the new amphitheatre at the 18th will improve spectator views and create a bit more of a buzz around the finishing hole. He added: “Some of the technology we’re using really is at the cutting edge. We’re the first club in the UK to have a fully installed SubAir system on all 19 greens – which should help the greens withstand some of the vagaries of Scotland’s climate. We look forward to seeing plenty of players out on the course this coming summer – it’s a great opportunity to play

Golf Championship for a record three times in 2008, 2010 and 2011, he is considered one of the golfing world’s brightest stars. As the latest Etihad Guest Ambassador, he will work on a series of initiatives to raise Etihad Airways’ brand awareness in Germany and other key markets around the world. This includes a promotional video being filmed in Abu Dhabi to showcase Etihad Airways’ award-winning service and also position the UAE capital as a leading golf and travel destination. WORLD GOLF AWARDS Also this year World Golf Awards will host its inaugural ceremony, taking place at the beautiful Conrad Algarve, Quinta do Lago, Portugal. From November 13th-16th the resort will host representatives from the leading gold destinations from around the world as they battle it out for the prestigious prizes on offer.

World Golf Awards serves to celebrate and reward excellence in golf tourism through our annual awards programme. The event is part of the World Travel Awards, known globally as the ‘Oscars of the travel industry’.

and Glasgow. The hotel is a haven of luxury British heritage that offers a five star hotel experience. With 232 elegant rooms, including 26 suites, the hotel provides some of the finest accommodation in Scotland. Not only home to three of the finest championship golf courses in Europe and an award-winning ESPA spa, the hotel also hosts an array of activities from Falconry to off-road Land Rover safaris. This year, Gleneagles will host the 40th biennial Ryder Cup, marking the first time since 1972 that the competition has been hosted on Scottish soil. MORE INFORMATION For more information head over to


F1 set to make history The Formula One Grand Prix gets underway next weekend in Australia, and it promises to be one of the most exciting seasons yet. Highlights include Olympics host Sochi hosting the first Russian GP in 100 years, plus a mouth-watering finale in Abu Dhabi, worth double points.

Russia enters a new chapter in its sporting history this autumn with the hosting of its first Grand Prix in 100 years. The Formula One World Championship will reach Sochi International Street Circuit on October 12th 2014 and will mark the sixteenth race of the F1 season. The circuit will use the infra-structure created for the 2014 Winter Olympics. The racing circuit will be the third-longest on the racing tour, at a little more than 3.6 miles, and will use roads within the Olympic Park as well as public roads. A third and final layer of asphalt will be laid after the Paralympics. A paddock has already been built on the fringe of the park. The Russian Grand Prix was first run in St. Petersburg in 1913 and again in 1914. But World War I broke out and the racing circuit didn’t return. 6

Russian president Vladimir Putin has strongly supported the return of Formula One to his country. The government has set aside nearly $200 million for the race, which comes on top of the $51 billion delegated to the Games themselves. F1 season counts down to opening The first race of the F1 season takes place on March 16th with the 2014 F1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne. Meanwhile Abu Dhabi’s Yas Marina Circuit will host the final round of the season, the first time it has done so since 2010. The 2010 race was the only time in F1 history that four drivers arrived at the final race with a chance of winning the title, with Sebastian Vettel triumphing. One potential benefit of moving Yas Marina to the final week of the sea-

son is the venue can host post-season test sessions immediately after the race as teams begin work on their 2015 cars. The first two stagings of the grand prix in 2009 and 2010 saw it serve as the season finale, before it became the penultimate race in 2011 and the third-last event the past two seasons. The change of date and place on the calendar for Abu Dhabi is among many made by the FIA, with the races in New Jersey, Mexico and South Korea being removed from the originally planned 22. India has also been stripped from the calendar, though race promoters are hoping to return in 2015, while Austria is back after a decade away from the sport.

FORMULA ONE 2014 CALENDAR March 16 Australia March 30 Malaysia April 6 Bahrain April 20 China May 11 Spain May 25 Monaco June 8 Canada June 22 Austria July 6 Great Britain July 20 Germany July 27 Hungary August 24 Belgium September 7 Italy September 21 Singapore October 5 Japan October 12 Russia November 2 United States November 9 Brazil November 23 Abu Dhabi


All the latest from Breaking Travel News With so much happening here at ITB Berlin it can be difficult to stay ahead in this most dynamic of industries. Here Breaking Travel News brings you the headlines from industry leaders around the world. LATAM PREPARES FOR WORLD CUP WITH NEW FLIGHTS LAN and TAM Airlines, part of LATAM Airlines Group, the largest airline group in South America, have announced the addition of over 300 new international flights to support demand during the World Cup this summer. The markets with the highest increase in flights to Brazil are Argentina, Chile and the UK. In addition to this, TAM Airlines has altered 31 per cent of its domestic flight network from June 10th to July 15th 2014 with the addition of over 750 new flights within Brazil.

ating flights that are synchronised with the World Cup match schedule. We will offer connectivity and transport a large share of the fans from around the world and we are fully committed to the success of the event. The new network is necessary and these plans have been in progress since last year.” RECORD VISITORS TO GERMANY For the fourth year in a row, the German National Tourist Board has registered record numbers of overnight stays by international visitors to the country. Figures for 2013 have exceeded the projected

Five source markets generate close to half of the 2013 growth. Foreign overnights for January to November 2013 increased by close to three million, 46 per cent (1.3-million overnights) generated by visitors from Great Britain (349,000), Russia (322,000), Switzerland (248,000), Arabian Gulf nations (237,000) and Poland (173,000). Bavaria continues to receive the highest number of all foreign overnights, followed by Germany’s

Over the coming months TAM is working on fine tuning details and getting approval for the small portion of flight requests still pending final approval. The company plans to submit additional requests during the event once the second phase of the tournament is defined. LAN and TAM have also requested authorisation from Brazil’s National Civil Aviation Agency to operate up to 201 international charter flights during the event. TAM estimates an investment of over than $21 million to implement the changes to the existing network. The decision to add flights came after TAM evaluated all the approvals granted by ANAC. With these modifications, TAM will operate approximately 22,000 flights within Brazil during the World Cup with a total domestic passenger capacity of seven million. The company will maintain a daily average of 800 flights, 640 of which are domestic. Claudia Sender, chief executive, TAM Airlines, commented: “Our operation will be highly focused on the logistical challenge of crisscrossing a continent-sized country day and night and opertarget of 70 million overnights and provisional figures released by the Federal Statistical Office show that 71.6 million overnight stays by international visitors were recorded. This represents an increase of four per cent compared to the previous year. “Despite the difficult economic conditions in Europe and the world, Germany’s incoming tourism in 2013 has developed strongly. Brand ‘Destination Germany’ is seeing a continuing increased global demand and presents itself in prime form,” said Petra Hedorfer, chief executive, German National Tourist Board.

capital, Berlin, with the state of Baden-Württemberg in third place. Since 2009, six source markets account for 40 per cent of German incoming tourism. In the past five years, Germany recorded constant increases in visitor overnights from Switzerland, Russia, Great Britain, Poland, the Netherlands and China, generating an overall increase of 42 per cent, or 7.1-million overnights of the total 16.8 million from abroad since 2009.


NEWS Etihad onboard for Australian Tourism Exchange Tourism Australia has announced Etihad Airways as its gold airline partner for the Australian Tourism Exchange, Australia’s largest annual travel and tourism business-to-business event taking place for the first time this year in Cairns. ATE14 will see around 600 ‘buyer’ delegates from 38 countries and approximately 1,200 Australian ‘seller’ delegates converge in Cairns, Queensland from May 11th–15th 2014, the first time the event will be held in a regional destination in its 35-year history.

The Abu Dhabi-based airline will provide return flights for international buyer delegates from UK, Europe, Singapore and the Middle East, including connections onto its alliance partner Virgin Australia’s domestic flights to Cairns. The announcement follows the signing in late 2012 of a A$6m, three-year Memorandum of Understanding between the two parties, helping to grow international visitors to Australia from the UK, Europe and the Middle East.

Etihad president James Hogan said: “Etihad Airways is pleased to be investing in the future of Australian tourism by supporting ATE for the first time in 2014. The Australian route is one of the most important in our global network and its performance is bolstered by the strong appeal of Australia as a destination for travellers, particularly from the UK, Ireland, Europe and emerging markets in the Middle East.”

A world of opportunity with Mantis Mantis, a family-run collection of award-winning, privately-owned, five-star properties is starting 2014 with over 25 new additions to the collection following a successful end to 2013. The group, which offers members sales, marketing and management solutions for their boutique businesses, is also the only hospitality group in the world to have a presence on all seven continents. Mantis prides itself on working with hotels that represent the finest example of their kind and celebrate the culture, gastronomy, architecture and nature of the locations in which they are found. There are two brand new properties now in the collection; Iconic Santorini and Finch Hattons.


Iconic Santorini is a brand new boutique hotel opening April 2014 that has unique cave rooms, carved out of the rock on the island of Santorini. The 22 bedroom retreat offers breathtaking views of the azure waters below from the five hotel levels and has cool touches like over-sized COCO-MAT all natural bedding and Aēsop bath products. There’s an outdoor infinity pool, pool terrace, a spa for individual or couples treatments and a home-style restaurant. British Airways is launching a brand new route to Santorini in May 2014.Luxury Kenyan camp Finch Hattons, will be reopening its doors at the end of April 2014w after a year-long renovation costing USD5.5 million. Now comprising

17 luxury tented guest suites, the camp offers guests a unique opportunity to relive the golden era of safari. The lodge lies in the heart of Tsavo West National Park, Kenya and the camp itself is positioned around a water hole fed by a natural spring from Mount Kilimanjaro, which is home to hippos, crocodiles, terrapins, monitor lizards and over 200 species of birds. Its location is unrivalled with full views of Mount Kilimanjaro and in the path of seasonal elephant migrations. Mantis’ aim during 2013 and into 2014 is to continue to diversify the collection so that it can offer new exciting destinations to its in-the-know travellers.

Royal Caribbean

Royal Caribbean relaunches Navigator of the Seas Having completed a month-long drydock revitalisation, Royal Caribbean International’s Navigator of the Seas is primed to resume year-round service from Galveston, Texas, and wow the Lone Star State with the area’s most innovative Caribbean cruise holiday offering. Part of an extensive fleet wide programme to enhance every Royal Caribbean ship, Navigator of the Seas will introduce new and enhanced dining options; debut a new FlowRider surf simulator; and offer a glimpse ahead toward

the cruise line’s highly anticipated Quantum of the Seas, with new first-at-sea features. Most anticipated of all the ship’s revitalisations is the new FlowRider surf simulator, the centre of the action atop the deck 13 Sports Deck, as well as the debut of Royal Caribbean’s first Virtual Balconies in 81 interior staterooms displaying expansive views of the ocean and destinations. Virtual Balconies were first announced for Quantum of the Seas,

Iconic Santorini

which debuts October 2014, and holidaymakers can be among the first to experience the innovation on Navigator of the Seas – even before the Quantum class is launched. Holidaymakers also can choose new Panoramic Ocean View staterooms, featuring floor-to-ceiling glass walls facing outward to provide guests unobstructed views all the time. Navigator of the Seas’ guests also can look forward to an expanded line-up of eight different dining options, led by the debut of an all-new modern Mexican specialty restaurant Sabor, featuring a menu of modern Mexican dishes, such as Oaxacan Ceviche of Red Snapper, Spicy Chicken Flautas, or Chicken and Roasted Corn Empanada, topped with Green mole and spicy peanut sauce – to name a few. Sabor diners also can delight in customised guacamole and salsas, made tableside right in front of their eyes, as well as an assor tment of tacos, quesadillas and burritos, all made with the freshest ingredients. Navigator of the Seas will sail seven-night Western Caribbean itineraries every Sunday from Galveston, visiting exciting warm-weather getaways in the Caribbean, including; Cozumel, Mexico; Roatan, Honduras; Belize City, Belize; Falmouth, Jamaica; and George Town, Grand Cayman. Royal Caribbean is considered the World’s Leading Cruise Line by the World Travel Awards.


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Europcar has unveiled the new features of its Privilege loyalty programme with the addition of several new benefits aimed at rewarding the loyalty of both leisure individual customers and business frequent travellers.

With this new programme, Europcar demonstrates its aims to deliver quality service and tailor-made solutions to its customers. The new Privilege programme gives access to free weekend rewards as of the third leisure rental, money off coupon vouchers as of the second leisure rental and a whole new range of additional benefits including car category upgrades and access to Europcar’s fast-track ReadyService. Europcar’s Privilege introduces also a new top Tier level to reward the most loyal customers: the black card Privilege Elite VIP Tier, giving access to Priority Pass airport lounges worldwide and many other exclusive benefits. These new features and benefits will be supported by a customised relationship plan to update members during all steps of their status in the programme and suggest targeted Europcar offers adapted to their mobility needs, as well as dedicated Europcar partner offers. Customers can register directly online on the dedicated Privilege websites, but also directly at Europcar locations in Australia, Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, New-Zealand, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, and the United-Kingdom. “We are very proud to unveil our Privilege loyalty programme and share it with our customers. We want to thank all of them for their loyalty and the trust they place in us every day by offering them adapted

offers as well as exclusive and innovative rewards such as worldwide lounge access via Priority Pass and ToMyDoor delivery and collection service in Europe”, explained Marcus Bernhardt, chief commercial officer, Europcar Group. EUROPCAR GROUP Europcar is one of the leading mobility player in Europe. Present in over 130 countries, the group provides customers with one of the largest vehicle rental network through its own operators, franchisees and partnerships. Europcar operates worldwide its own brands Europcar and InterRent, which is its low cost brand. It also operates the National and Alamo brands in EMEA. The group puts customers at the heart of its mission whether it is innovation or service. All the employees of the group are committed to delivering customer satisfaction. Europcar is actively promoting Corporate and Environmental social responsibility. In 2013 Europcar was also recognised by the World Travel Awards as the World’s Leading Green Transport Solution Company.

MORE INFORMATION For more on what the brand has been up to in recent weeks head over to Hall 3.1/212 here at ITB or visit


We continue to do our best. After winning ten awards as Europe’s best airport, we are delighted to have been nominated again for the World Travel Award. Thanks are due to you, our passengers, for placing your trust in Zurich Airport year after year and honouring its infrastructure and service quality. Your satisfaction will remain our number one goal in the future.

STARWOOD PREFERRED GUEST debuts ultimate travel app Star wood Preferred Guest has introduced an innovative and inspiring new app for iPad as well as an exciting new design to suppor t iOS7. The SPG App for iPad joins the SPG App for iPhone, extending SPG’s digital suite of products and gives today’s connected traveller a visually rich, personalised experience on every step of their journey from imaginative destination exploration to the details of their trip before, during and after a visit. Each new, native iOS7 app builds on the operating system’s latest features and designs and provides guests with the beautiful, immersive travel experience Starwood is known to deliver. “Travel is inherently mobile and the rapid advancements in technology enable us to extend the personalised experience guests receive in our hotels to their most personal devices,” said Chris Holdren, senior vice president, Starwood Preferred Guest & Digital. “Following our success with the SPG App for iPhone, we built the SPG App for iPad using insights we have gained from our members. The relationships we’ve built with our guests put us in a unique position to lead and win with digital by delivering the experiences they seek.” Today’s travellers are increasingly using mobile devices to search for and explore destinations, as well as book rooms and other travel services. Industry wide, 40 per cent of travel searches occur on mobile devices up from a quarter in 2013. Starwood’s mobile bookings are growing at an annual rate of 1,000 per cent - five times greater than the annual growth rate of the web channel ten years ago. The new Starwood apps deliver both the convenience and speed mobile travellers desire while highlighting the SPG lifestyle. “When we developed our iPhone App, we were focused on ease and speed,

envisioning travellers engaging with the App with ‘one eye and one thumb’ in transit,” said Clay Cowan, vice president, global digital for Starwood Hotels & Resorts. “We created our iPad App with a deeper, more leisurely experience in mind. We’re literally inviting people to ‘lean back’ and get lost in our destinations and hotels through fantastic photography showcasing great design, amazing locations and the unique experiences one can expect across our portfolio of nine lifestyle brands and 1,100 hotels in 100 countries.” Starwood’s mobile team partnered with Bottle Rocket to design and develop the SPG apps - resulting in smart, intuitive navigation that seamlessly integrates SPG and hotel-specific branding into the iPad’s famously user-friendly interface. The SPG App for iPad will launch in both English and Chinese and will be updated with additional versions and multiple languages. “We strive to offer our guests a great experience that is unique to them both inside our hotels and at every touch point,” added Holdren. “The experience we created with our iPad and iPhone apps combine the insights of our guests with the magic of our design-led brands. We build our apps on the newest tech in order to exceed the needs of our digitally connected guests.”

MORE INFORMATION For more on the Starwood Preferred Guest loyalty scheme head over to preferredguest or visit Hall 9/316 here at ITB Berlin 2014. 13


OUR MOST POPULAR DESTINATION. Do not disturb. Stretched out on a fully-flat bed. The sumptuous soft mattress and bedtime drink beginning to take effect. About to touch down on a cotton-wool cloud. From gentle ambient cabin lighting, to soothing pillow mist aromas, see how far we’re going to bring you some well-deserved sleep at Welcome to a more comfortable world.

NORWEGIANS CRUISE THEIR OWN WAY. MEDITERRANEAN − BALTIC − CARIBBEAN & BAHAMAS − HAWAII − ALASKA And Cruising Like a Norwegian is all about enjoying incomparable freedom on the high seas and having the flexibility every day, whether on board or ashore, to plan the day to suit oneself. For your customers that means simply to relax either on deck by the side of a sparkling pool or in comfortable staterooms. Or to be just as active as they want to be - dancing, bowling or enjoying tremendous entertainment. And all this in conjunction with a culinary variety they have never before experienced at sea, with authentic international cuisine, a sheer endless choice of dining options and the freedom to dress the way they please. That is a holiday which has everything your customers want. We call it „Freestyle Cruising®“… and it‘s only found on Norwegian Cruise Line.




NCL (Bahamas) Ltd. Wiesbaden Office I Continental Europe Branch I Kreuzberger Ring 68 I 65205 Wiesbaden I Germany Phone: +49 611 36 07 0 I Fax: +49 611 36 07 099 I E-mail: I Internet: ©2014 NCL Corporation LTD Ship’s Registry: Bahamas and United States of America. 5111.02.14

Tourism powerhouse LUX* Resorts Maldives has won the prestigious title of Indian Ocean’s Leading Beach Resort at the World Travel Awards.


Maldives recognised as industry leader by World Travel Awards

The awards recognise outstanding achievement in quality, innovation and service across the tourism industry and around the world. Rather than a panel of judges, thousands of clients worldwide voted online to select winners on a country, continent and global basis. Dominic Ruhl, general manager, Lux Resort, Maldives, said: “At LUX* we have developed new spa retreats, programmes and treatments which are tailor-made for our guests and their lifestyle, helping them feel great not just on their holiday, but for a lifetime. We are thrilled to have won this award which is a great recognition of all our efforts.” Above or below the waterline, the Maldives presents a kaleidoscope of colours, flavours, nature and activities that never fails to delight. And LUX* Maldives is no exception. As the only settlement on the island of Dhidhoofinolhu in South Ari Atoll, this luxury resort in Maldives offers

real insight into unspoiled island living. A spontaneous atmosphere provides delights at every turn, with anything from impromptu cinema screenings on the beach to pop-up musical performances. The lagoon is ideal for snorkelling and whale shark spotting, while two pools and a spa at this idyllic Maldives resort offer a welcome break from the beach. Follow secret pathways through tropical gardens and taste authentic island cuisine at our numerous restaurants. Wherever you venture at this luxury resort in Maldives, expect to be pleasantly surprised. LUX* Resorts is a collection of premium hotels in the Indian Ocean where guests can celebrate island life and enjoy light living; it is the new name and consumer brand for the luxury hotels, previously operated under the ‘Naïade Luxury Resorts’ umbrella. The five resorts in the LUX* portfolio are LUX* Belle Mare, Mauritius; LUX* Le Morne, Mauritius;

LUX* Grand Gaube, Mauritius; LUX* Maldives and LUX* Ile de la Réunion. A LUX* Resort is a place where each moment matters. It’s where the ordinary is done extraordinarily. It’s a rest from which you return, both invigorated and inspired. Clear rather than cluttered, free rather than formal, spontaneous rather than predictable, LUX* Resorts are simpler and fresher, lightening, brightening and heightening the resort concept. In a world where time is precious, each moment matters, experiences and emotions are more valuable than material things. The brand’s Island Light concept is inspired by the nature, culture, flavours and wares of island life, presenting a true taste of Mauritius, La Réunion and the Maldives. MORE INFORMATION For more on the brand head over to Hall 20./124 here at ITB or visit


Special moments Is it just a great car? We believe it´s more. It´s the moment you experience the sound, feel the vibes, your pulse, chase the sun and celebrate the sigths. Start exploring and enjoy your ride. Giving you special moments is what we do best with a range of high class cars and an innovative first class service for your piece of mind. And you? Well, just get lost in the moment.

Start your moment and find out more! Start at the ITB 2014. Visit us in hall 9 at stand 101


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ROSEWOOD CORNICHE CELEBRATES RECORD YEAR Rosewood Corniche, Jeddah’s most luxurious hotel, has celebrated a record year amid strong positive growth throughout 2013, the hotel’s management has reported. The number one hotel in the Kingdom’s commercial capital has announced that its in-room revenue has increased by 8.2 per cent in 2013 while occupancy levels have increased by 3.7 per cent compared to 2012.

Revenues were further boosted during the peak season from June 2013 to November 2013 leading to an increase of 6.1 per cent in revenue per available room and 2.6 per cent in the Average Room Rate. The hotel also reported an overall increase of 1.2 per cent in its Gross Operating Profit with the total revenue being 2.9 per cent higher than the forecasted budget.

member combined with professional pride and the desire to not only achieve increased revenues but to further accelerate and exceed guest expectations. We are extremely proud to report such positive figures for 2013.”

introduced many new concepts to the hospitality industry including specially trained Fragrance Butlers, a seemingly unusual amenity to offer guests a choice of exotic scents, and the Rosebuds programme for young children.

During Ramadan, the hotel was transformed into a traditional Layali Hijazi setting, providing guests with a truly memorable, special Holy Month experience as they were transported back into a world of charm and opulence.

He added: Our guests are incredibly loyal to the Rosewood brand both here in the Middle East and throughout the world, but we are conscious never to rest on our laurels. We are now looking ahead to strengthening our position in 2014 as the number one business and leisure venue in Jeddah, and to maintain our presence as one of the foremost properties in the Kingdom.”

In 2013, the hotel underlined its ongoing support for the non-profit organisation, Jeddah Autism Centre by hosting the Vertical Marathon for the children and the Rosewood team helping to renovate and decorate their facility.

Hans Peter-Leitzke, managing director, Rosewood Corniche, said: “We can’t associate our hotel’s success story with one person alone or a particular department but see it as a consolidated effort of each team

Rosewood Corniche opened in September 2007, offering stunning views of the Red Sea and bringing a new level of quality hospitality and personalised services to Jeddah. Since then the luxury property has

Jeddah’s culinary lovers welcomed the introduction of the world’s latest pastry innovation, the ‘cronut’, available only in the property’s Soleil café, while the Italian Food Festival saw the authentic dishes prepared from Liguria, Sicily, Campania and Tuscany. In fashion, the hotel collaborated with leading Saudi Arabian designer Manar Al Rawi who showcased her latest collections.

“I am delighted to say that we have successfully fulfilled our targets for this year,” said Sherif El Mansoury, director of sales and marketing at Rosewood Corniche. “In 2014, we will continue our growth campaign and focus on rolling out new and innovative consumer marketing initiatives to increase footfall, generate higher revenues for the hotel but ultimately, to keep our guests exceptionally well looked after.” Rosewood Corniche was the recipient of Saudi Arabia’s Leading Hotel at the Middle East World Travel Awards in June 2013, a title held for four consecutive years.

MORE INFORMATION For more information on the property head over to



A feast for the senses in an astonishing environment just outside Stockholm. Arriving at Görvälns Slott manor house there is no question that one is arriving in a designer-boutique hotel near Stockholm city. Maria and Johan Eklund, the owners of the hotel, have themselves picked out every detail so that guests can enjoy the relaxing environment, the beautiful rooms and the splendid cuisine and beverages.

Hotel owners Maria and Johan Eklund

These qualities are widely recognised by a satisfied clientele. Görvälns Slott was recently awarded the titles of Sweden’s Leading Boutique Hotel and Sweden’s Leading Conference Hotel 2013 by the World Travel Awards, known as the ‘the Oscars of the Travel Industry’.


Görvälns Slott is a boutique hotel for discerning guests seeking a modern, yet timeless, manorial experience. The hotel’s owners have developed a unique concept in which luxurious enchantment infuses every aspect of a stay, from food and drink to service and design. The contrasts between

the austere style of the manorial buildings and the intimate opulence and luxurious comfort of the rococo fantasy inside are like nowhere else in Sweden. All 38 hotel rooms have their own personal style and showcase the talents of a furniture restorer who has worked for three years to renovate and gild furniture that matches and enhances its settings.


The hotel is located on the outskirts of Stockholm, and overlooks the picturesque lake Mälaren. For Johan and Maria, the hotel is a passion that allows them to work with their joys in life. Thanks to their hard work, and personal touch, the boutique hotel now breathes an atmosphere of calm and peace. Welcoming bedrooms, exquisitely comfortable beds and fine quilts give life to the Dalai Lama’s wise words that “sleep is the best meditation”.

your pallet and rest away from the stresses of everyday life. The establishment also caters for conference parties, who can find inspiration from the peaceful environment. “We are so close to Stockholm city, it is hard to believe that a place so peaceful can be within such short distance,” explains Johan Eklund. Indeed, the hotel’s restaurant also receives guests who only wish to pop by and enjoy the excellent food in the priceless settings. One thing is for sure, one visit to Görväln will not be enough, with many visitors returning to the serene environment to reconnect with themselves time and again. MORE INFORMATION For all you need to know about a visit to Görvälns Slott, head over to

The staff at Görväln work systematically to ensure that their guests can relax. A visit to Görväln will tease


FCM Travel links with Flight Centre for hotel programme

FCM Travel at World Travel Awards

Called SmartSTAY, the programme offers access to generous yearround free extras such as room upgrades, wi-fi, late check-out or early check-in, breakfast, car parking, use of hotel meeting spaces, laundry services and local restaurant discounts. There are no additional costs associated with SmartSTAY rates for FCm or Corporate Traveller customers; nor are there any upfront fees for hotels to join. Over 130 hotels worldwide are already participating in the programme, ranging from three to five star properties. Further hotels are being added every month. SmartSTAY also comes with its own mobile app which provides travellers


with an online directory of every participating hotel in the programme. Special features include images of the properties, hotel descriptions, embedded Google maps and a list of free inclusions clients receive by booking a SmartSTAY rate. The app requires iOS6.0 or later and is available for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. Alternative platforms require Android 2.1 or later versions. Steve Norris, corporate managing director for Flight Centre in the UK, said SmartSTAY was an exciting initiative for FCm and Corporate Traveller customers, as well as the hotel industry. He explained: “This programme is very unique to our business and will deliver a new level of value and return to our business

travellers. Our corporate clients are increasingly looking to secure greater value for the money they spend on accommodation and this style of programme offers valuable extras that are in demand specifically from the corporate travel market. The value added features of SmartSTAY like the free wi-fi, breakfast or use of a hotel’s conference rooms, can add up to substantial savings for FCm or Corporate Traveller clients. And companies also benefit from increased visibility of their spend as all bookings can be tracked as part of our management information reporting services.” Norris continued: “No other travel management company in the market is offering year-round hotel inclu-

Flight Centre Travel Group has launched an innovative new global addedvalue hotel programme exclusively for clients of its business travel divisions FCm Travel Solutions and Corporate Traveller.

sions like this; where there are no extra costs, no memberships and no complicated terms and conditions. This programme offers exactly what the name implies, a ‘SmartSTAY’ – in that there are smarter benefits on offer, smarter services available to guests and a smarter all-round value from your hotel rates.” NEW APPOINTMENT In the UK, FCm Travel Solutions has promoted James Runnicles to the position of head of sales. Runnicles joined parent company Flight Centre Limited in 2003 as a retail travel consultant, but moved to the business travel side of the group one year later. He has since held key business development manager roles for both Corporate Traveller and FCm Travel Solutions and has been instrumental in securing new business for both brands. Since January 2012 he has held the role of sales director at FCm Travel Solutions winning new client accounts worth £20 million, primarily from the banking and retail sectors. "My extensive experience in business development for both of Flight Centre's corporate travel brands means that I can bring great insight to this role," commented Runnicles. "I am looking forward to mentoring the UK sales team so that we remain on track to achieve our current financial year's target of £40m signed new business." James Runnicles assumes the UK head of sales role from Alex Armstrong, who continued to lead FCm's UK sales operation as part of his promotion to global sales director in February 2012. Runnicles reports to Jo Greenfield, general manager, FCm Travel Solutions UK.

Qatar. FCm global leader Gregory Lording said he was delighted that FCm would retain its status as the top global travel management company, particularly as the business enters its tenth anniversary year in 2014. “To win this award for three consecutive years is an outstanding achievement for our global business and excellent recognition for our brand as we enter a milestone anniversary year,” Lording said. “To be recognised regionally and globally is testament to the broad reach of the FCm network and exceptional travel management service we provide locally for clients world-wide. One of our strengths as a global business is that all of our teams work cohesively together to ensure customers receive the same level of high quality service, professionalism and value wherever they are partnered with us throughout our network.” Joanna Greenfield, general manager, FCm UK added: “I'm thrilled to hear FCm will hold onto this title for another year. To receive global recognition for three years running since 2011 is an impressive feat, which I believe our FCm teams have worked hard for. There is increasing competition in the corporate travel market, despite this FCm continues to grow its business and achieve great outcomes for clients no matter what industry they work in. These awards are testament to the strength of our business and ability to deliver ongoing travel savings to clients globally." MORE INFORMATION To find out more on FCM Travel Solutions head over to Hall 7.1A/100 at ITB Berlin or visit

WORLD TRAVEL AWARDS In other news, FCm Travel Solutions held onto its title of World's Leading Travel Management Company after winning the coveted global accolade at the World Travel Awards for the third year running. The global title is one of nine awards FCm picked up in the 2013 World Travel Awards program. FCm collected the award at the World Travel Awards Grand Final Gala Ceremony for 2013, which was held at the La Cigale Hotel in Doha,


To ďŹ nd out more about FCm Travel Solutions scan the QR code. Better travel ideas. Greater savings.

Recognised worldwide as a leader... in helping businesses save more on corporate travel. With a global network spanning 87 countries and a team of over 6500 travel industry professionals, FCm Travel Solutions draws on its global reach and local teams to deliver outstanding results for clients. Working with our industry partners, our people create real savings by customising travel programs to suit the needs of each client. Our focus is on negotiating the right deals for clients and providing personal service through small, dedicated teams rather than call centres. This award-winning approach to travel management enables us to deliver better travel ideas and greater savings for companies around the world.

World’s Leading Travel Management Company


Europcar is helping customers enjoy stress-free car hire in a number of countries across Europe as well as Australia and New Zealand with the launch of GoZen and GoZen+.

The new all-in-one cover reduces the customer’s excess to zero for theft and damage to cars, including damage to the windscreen, mirrors, lamps and tyres. Now Europcar customers can relax and enjoy the journey knowing they’re covered by GoZen. GoZen covers drivers for damage to the vehicle, providing customers aren’t driving negligently or incorrectly using the vehicle. If Europcar customers opt for GoZen+, they gain the same cover for theft and damage, as well as personal covers for the driver and passengers in case of serious personal injury. GoZen and GoZen+ are available to drivers aged 26 and over and only on vehicles in Europcar’s standard leisure fleet. Customers visiting Europcar branches in Belgium, Germany, France, Spain, Italy and Portugal have access to both GoZen and GoZen+. Customers in the UK, Australia and New Zealand are able to take advantage of the standard GoZen package. Ken McCall, managing director, Europcar UK Group explained: “We understand that worrying about minor damage to the hire car can be

stressful for customers. GoZen takes all that anxiety away by offering cover for theft and accidents that could happen to anyone, no matter how much care they take. GoZen+ offers personal covers for added peace of mind. McCall added: “This is the latest product designed to help our customers enjoy convenient, hassle-free car hire.”


Europcar and Aeroflot, Russia’s flagship airline and the largest national air company, have announced an exclusive strategic partnership for the next five years to provide quality car rental services to all Aeroflot business and leisure customers.

Marcus Bernhardt, chief commercial officer, Europcar Group, explained: “It is a great opportunity for our group to partner with Aeroflot, Russia’s largest airline company.” He added: “We share the same customer approach and both our brands stand for high quality of service and customer satisfaction. This strategic move will help us strengthen our reach in this key region which has

It is a great opportunity for our group to partner with Aeroflot, Russia’s largest airline company.


become a hub between Europe and Asia for travellers. Europcar looks forward to welcoming Aeroflot customers to our stations across the network.” Europcar, with one of the largest vehicle rental networks and presence in over 130 countries is the perfect match for Aeroflot which provides, with its SkyTeam partner members service, access to more than 1,000 destinations in 178 countries and carried 17.7 million passengers in 2012. Operating one of the most modern and youngest fleets in Europe, comprising 141 Airbus, Boeing and Sukhoi airliners, with an average airplane age between five and six years old, Aeroflot offers the shortest distance for flights from Europe to Asia via Moscow. Giorgio Callegari, Aeroflot deputy general director for strategy and alliances, added: “Aeroflot’s commitment to the highest standards of customer service has today taken a further step forward thanks to the agreement with Europcar. Our customers will now be recognised across the Europcar network and have access to special offers tailored to better serve their global needs.” He added: “Europcar has been selected as the strategic partner of Aeroflot because of its global reach, aligned customer focus and innovative approach to delivering competitive services. Increased awareness on a worldwide scale will result from the combination of the two longstanding brands.”


In Canada, Europcar has also entered into a new partnership with Discount Car and Truck Rentals, one of the largest car rental companies in

the country, with over 260 locations and 17,000 vehicles covering all ten Canadian provinces. Roland Keppler, chief executive officer, Europcar Group stated: “The new partnership with Discount fulfils the next step in our strategy to further develop our global footprint and extends our opportunities in the world’s car rental market, and especially in North America.” Discount Car and Truck Rentals is now serving Europcar’s customers in Canada and Europcar is serving Discount’s customers in the rest of the world. Europcar is now able to offer customers the access they need to prime airport locations in Canada and at the same time strengthen its reach to the North American market. “The entire Discount Car and Truck Rentals team is very excited about this new alliance. For the first time in our 33 year history, we are able to offer global services to our Canadian customers and clients by partnering with Europcar,” said Jay Singer, president Discount Car and Truck Rentals. “We have the utmost confidence that Europcar will take great care of our Canadian customers and we look forward to reciprocating that highest level of service to Europcar customers and clients that visit our beautiful country,” concluded Singer.

MORE INFORMATION In 2013 Europcar was also recognised by the World Travel Awards as the World’s Leading Green Transport Solution Company. For more on what the brand has been up to in recent weeks head over to Hall 3.1/212 here at ITB or visit www.


Eco-retreats at Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives

Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives is an intimate coral island in a sparkling lagoon, with jetties threading across the water out to spacious villa accommodations. Everywhere you look, marine life abounds. And the gleaming waters beckon. Formerly known as Soneva Gili by Six Senses, Gili Lankanfushi is set on the private island of Lankanfushi in the North Malé Atoll. This luxury resort is just a 20-minute speedboat ride from the International Airport at Malé, the capital of the Republic of Maldives. All of its 45 over-water villas, crafted in a traditional style from natural materials, reflect the harmony of life by the water’s edge. For ultimate privacy, guests can stay in one of the seven Crusoe Residences or the Private Reserve, accessible only by personal boat. All villas at this luxury island resort

offer a private water garden, open air bathroom, and roof-top terrace and over–water sundecks. The interiors recreate a natural habitat, using sustainable woods, natural materials and traditional fabrics, while still offering all the modern amenities and providing the comfort of true luxury. Luxury dining comes in the form of a private dinner on this secluded island. The cuisine will whet your appetite with fresh offerings and local produce, while the extraordinary settings will leave an indelible impression. The surroundings are teeming with marine life and the resort has its own fully-equipped PADI diving school plus a variety of water sports. This place tops the list of must-do destinations for those in the know. “As an eco-sensitive resort, we are committed to the principles of envi-

ronmental sustainability, which plays an important part in Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives corporate philosophy,” said Iain McCormack, general manager of Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives. “We’ve tailored the operations of the resort around this philosophy.” McCormack added: “We have on staff a marine biologist, who is responsible for several ecological conservation programmes relating to the ocean. We also maintain our own organic herb and vegetable garden, which provides fresh and local ingredients used in the resort’s kitchens. An active recycling programme of using waste for building materials is practiced.” Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives’ corporate responsibility extends beyond the resort’s perimeter as well, with several programs currently active

Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives is positioned as an upmarket boutique resort that stands at the forefront of the eco-luxury sector and acts as a benchmark for luxury resorts. With the property having been recognised as the Indian Ocean’s Leading Luxury Resort by the World Travel Awards in 2013, Breaking Travel News here calls in for a look around. and will be continued following the name change. Gili Lankanfushi, Maldives marks the parent company - Hotel Properties - fifth property in the Maldives. The other properties within the group are Four Seasons Resort at Kuda Huraa and Landaa Giraavaru; Holiday Inn Resort Kandooma; and Rihiveli Beach Resort.

MORE INFORMATION For more information visit www. or head over to Hall 5.2A/107.


A seasoned and experienced management stalwart, H.E. Sheikh Faisal Bin Khalid Al Qasimi is a member of ruling family of Sharjah and has served in various prestigious positions in the UAE government. As president of Orient Travel he has been a pioneer in the overall development of the travel industry in the region. A pillar of strength for Orient Travel, he here sits down with Phil Blizzard of Breaking Travel News to discuss the past, present and future of tourism in the UAE. Breaking Travel News interview

Mohammed Sharaf

Breaking Travel News: Let’s start with the two major accolades which you won in 2013. What does it mean to you and your organisation to have won titles for Dubai's Leading Travel Management Company and UAE's Leading Travel Management Company at the World Travel Awards?

H.E. Sheikh Faisal Bin Khalid Al Qasimi, president, Orient Travel As we have a strong presence in the UAE, we should also benefit with this growth. BTN: What will be the main goals of Orient Travel during the lead up to and during the Expo event? H.E. Sheikh Faisal Al Qassemi: Consolidate and strengthen our growth.

H.E. Sheikh Faisal Al Qassemi: It means a lot. The two awards we won in 2013 mean a lot to us. The World Travel Awards are a reputable organisation, recognised everywhere. Secondly it is an endorsement and reconfirmation of our service.

BTN: Moving now from that look into future, let’s reflect back to the beginning of Orient Travel, when did you start and what did you offer at that time?

The first one is important because we have really evolved as a travel management company in Dubai and because of our extensive network across the country; we are definitely a top TMC of the UAE.

H.E. Sheikh Faisal Al Qassemi: Looking back, it’s more than three decades since I got involved with the company. I came back from the USA after completing my education and was entrusted with the responsibility of leading Orient Travel.

BTN: A good end to 2013, then, for Orient Travel and a significant time for both Dubai and the UAE, with the destination winning the right to host Expo 2020. What do you feel this major event will do for the travel tourism sector in the UAE and also for Orient Travel?

At that time we were a relatively small organisation based in Sharjah, but to our good fortune we have a very strong and professional management team which has worked very hard along with our employees to make this organisation one of the largest travel management companies in the region.

H.E. Sheikh Faisal Al Qassemi: Winning the EXPO 2020 is indeed a great achievement for a new country like UAE. It clearly shows that Dubai is there on the world map as a great emerging destination. We feel that in due course there will be a lot of investment in the region which will definitely give a great impetus to the travel and tourism sector in the UAE.

Today, Orient Travel has 25 offices and ten implant offices in the UAE.

BTN: How have you evolved since then, and what were some of your keys moments along the way? H.E. Sheikh Faisal Al Qassemi: We have certainly evolved as a leading organisation especially

because our growth has been organic and we have been one of the fastest growing organisations of the last decade. There have been many key moments in our journey. For example, setting up our first office in Dubai, the World Travel Awards titles in 2010 and again in 2013, and finally our recent partnership with Carlson Wagonlit Travel. Breaking Travel News: Finally, Orient Travel is very much an Arab family business, is it likely to stay this way, or will you at sometime decide to go 'public'. What are your views on this? H.E. Sheikh Faisal Al Qassemi: Orient Travel was established by my late father Sheikh Khalid Bin Sultan Al Qasimi who was the first head of the Department of Civil Aviation, Sharjah and was also the pioneer who established the first flying school in the UAE. After he passed away, the baton was passed on and the company has been managed by my brothers and myself. I have been heading this organisation for the last 30 years or so and we have a lot of emotions and sentiments attached to this business. At this point, it is a family organisation and we are unable to predict the future course because that will depend on a number of factors. MORE INFORMATION For more on this exciting brand head over to


A luxury escape with

Ayada Maldives

Owned by Turkey’s Aydeniz Group, the 112-villa Ayada Maldives is located just 30 kilometres from the equator in the Gafuu Dhaalu Atoll and on the previously undeveloped island of Maguhdhuvaa. The location is ideal, with the distance from Maldives capital Malé meaning the resort takes on the feel of an intimate hideaway, with the closest inhabited island more than ten kilometres away. The lack of ambient light also allows for breathtaking star-gazing opportunities. Ayada is made up of 62 seafront and 50 water villas, starting from 103 square metres. Each of the sea villas comes with its own private pool and terrace overlooking the tranquil waters of the Indian Ocean. They are positioned so as to capture views of the spectacular sunrise and sunsets with infinite views of the ocean. For a taste of ultra luxury try the outstanding duplex Ayada Royal Ocean Suite.

All exterior and interior elements have been especially commissioned to use the most durable natural elements and as such there is an abundance of teak, marble and sandstone finishings throughout the property. Ayada Maldives offers guests seven vividly enticing outlets, each with its own influence, ranging from exotic Asian flavours to tantalising Mediterranean specialities. The unique ‘Ile de Joie’, for example, offers an extensive selection of quality wines and cheeses with an array of the finest chocolate as well as a humidor stocked with a variety of top quality Cuban cigars. All dining experiences at Ayada Maldives come complete with impeccable service and breathtaking views of the ocean. Like much of the Maldives, Maguhdhuvaa is surrounded by pristine waters – perfect for both diving and snorkelling. The onsite dive and

Recognised as the Indian Ocean’s Leading Villa Resort & Spa by the World Travel Awards, Ayada Maldives has been making waves since opening in 2011. Breaking Travel News calls in at what is fast becoming one of the most sought after resorts in the region.

watersports centre offers a range of courses and experiences, including anything from professional PADI diving certifications to fun dives, snorkelling, canoeing, wind surfing, catamaran sailing, stand up paddling, and water skiing. Other recreational facilities include a large infinity pool, tennis, mini football, volleyball, badminton and a games room with Xbox, PS3 and pool tables. The resort also benefits from proximity to the best surfing spots in the Maldives, Kid’s Club and babysitting services. Private events are catered for with ‘The White Room’ offering a venue for a wedding or large scale event with a garden setting for up to 450 people.

private hammam in the Maldives and is also the only facility to offer Vichy spa products. At over 3,500 sqm, it is one of the most comprehensive in the Indian Ocean. Guests can try three exclusive signature rituals, all of which have been carefully considered to unite the nurturing effects natural elements as well as three unique AySpa hammam rituals. MORE INFORMATION For more information on visiting the property head over to www.

Ayada’s 3,500 square metre AySpa, which is managed by spa consultants ESPA, was designed by leading spa experts and unites the nurturing effects of water with earth’s elements. AySpa boasts the only


An experience of a lifetime that captures the opulence and romance of Imperial India


World’s Leading Apartment Hotel” at World Travel Awards for the past three consecutive years.


As the business capital of Africa, Joburg is a thriving metropolis with chic bars, gourmet restaurants and designer boutiques springing up everywhere.

traveller. If you like your creature comforts, a comfy bed, your own kitchen to cook up a storm, and views to die for, then The Regent has it all.

The Regent, an exquisite apartment hotel, typifies the energy and opportunity of Joburg. Aimed at well-travelled, style-conscious travellers, it is just moments from the business hub of Sandton, and combines all the benefits of a five-star hotel and stateof-the-art security with the creature comforts of home.

But it’s not just window-dressing. Here you will find five-star amenities, concierge, Zing café restaurant, Camelot Spa, access to meeting rooms, Wi-Fi, bio-metric security, 24 hour on-site security, a fully equipped gym with indoor/outdoor swimming pool, a sauna and steam room, and a shuttle service.

The accommodation is airy and spacious - with a dash of decadence. The roomy two and three bedroom apartments are packed with all modcons and afford awesome views across the city. The Regent also offers multi-storey penthouses, with three or four bedrooms at the bottom, the living areas in the middle, and an entertainment terrace with your very own splash pool on the roof.

Catch a ride in a private lift into the entrance lobby of your luxurious and roomy apartment. Now, take in that awesome view – the skyscrapers of Sandton, the surrounding view, the gardens below, the traffic that you are not in.

The Regent, all luxurious apartments and triple story penthouses, is a place to kick off your shoes, chill and just be. It has been voted “World’s Leading Apartment Hotel” at World Travel Awards for the past three consecutive years. HIGH LIVING AND MORE The Regent is an exclusive, self-contained state-of-the-art residential building catering for the discerning

trained therapists who exude typical Camelot warmth. Procedures available include massage therapy, body treatments, slimming and detoxification treatments, specialized skin treatments. Facilities include a steam room, heated indoor pool and gym. MORE INFORMATION For more information about The Regent visit, and to find out more about Joburg head over to the Johannesburg Tourism Company stand at Hall 20./138 here at ITB Berlin.

CAMELOT SPA @ THE REGENT Camelot Spa at The Regent is a luxurious spa, intimate in scale and a perfect fusion of tranquillity. The treatments and facilities are unsurpassed, relying on the power of nature and wisdom gained from ancient traditions and philosophies from around the world. Relax in the hands of professional therapists, who will select your treatment, or tailor make a programme to suit your needs. Add to this the finest facilities, highly


INTERVIEW With some of the largest facilities around the globe, DP World has grown into an industry leader since its formation a little under a decade ago. Here Breaking Travel News takes a look at the company’s strengths. Breaking Travel News interview

Mohammed Sharaf, group chief executive, DP World Breaking Travel News: DP World is a mammoth global operation, headquartered at Jebel Ali, Dubai and since the formation in September 2005 there has been significant growth and development across the world. Let’s start with key strategies for 2014 and beyond? Mohammed Sharaf: Our focus is on expanding in markets where our customers tell us they need us to be. The focus of our expansion has been strongly on developing markets and today they account for around three quarters of our business. However we also invest where we can add value for our customers in the long term and two of our biggest new developments are in the UK and The Netherlands – London Gateway and Rotterdam World Gateway. BTN: On to your global operations; let’s look at the different regions starting with South America - what is your presence there? Mohammed Sharaf

MS: Trade for the region will be given a further shot in the arm as the football World Cup 2014 in Brazil looms on the horizon and the Rio Olympics of 2016 follow hot on its heels. Our east coast terminals stand to see some of the action as the world descends on Latin America. In Brazil, Embraport is the new development of our Latin American family and became operational at the end of last year; our other terminals also play a key role. In 2011, two terminals in Suriname joined the network at the Port of Paramaribo. DP World also operates a separate private terminal near Paramaribo focused on handling project cargoes for the mining, oil and forestry sectors as well as cement. At Callao in Peru, we operate the largest and most efficient container terminal on South America’s Pacific coast having been awarded a 30 year concession in 2006. DP World Callao is the busiest terminal in the Port which is 15kms from the capital Lima.


On the east coast at Buenos Aires, Argentina, we operate Terminals Rio de la Plata the largest terminal in the country handling container, general cargo and cruise vessels. It also handles deep-sea vessels from Europe, Asia and North America as well as feeders to both the east and west coast of South America and barges up river to Rosario. In 2011, we inaugurated TRP’s Quinquela Martin, South America’s largest and most modern cruise terminal based on a 12,300 sq. m site capable of handling 600,000 passengers a year. BTN: Moving westward and Europe; can you give us an overview of DP World London Gateway and the current state of its development? MS: DP World London Gateway opened for business in November 2013 and is the largest marine infrastructure project undertaken in the UK in over two decades. It’s a unique development that combines the UK’s newest deep-sea container port with Europe’s largest logistics park, using world-leading technology to increase productivity and reduce costs. Located at the heart of the country’s largest consumer market just 16km from a major motorway that connects London, DP World London Gateway’s highly efficient road, rail and sea links offer a quicker, cheaper and more environmentally friendly way to transport goods to their destination. When fully developed, it will be able to handle 3.5 million TEU a year and is forecast to create 36,000 jobs, contributing £3.2bn to the UK’s GDP annually. BTN: Onto Africa and an overview of your new projects on this continent. Please tell us how important Africa is to DP World from the perspective of global trade? MS: We operate terminals in Djibouti, Mozambique, Egypt, Algeria and Senegal, and have stevedoring

operations in four South African ports. New container terminals are planned for Egypt and Senegal and will be built in line with market demand.

in India, in Mumbai, Chennai, Cochin, Mundra and Vishakhapatnam and these facilities support a significant portion of India’s international containerised trade.

According to the Economist, over the past ten years real income per person in Africa has increased by more than 30 per cent and Africa is the world’s fastest growing continent just now. Over the next ten years, the Economist forecasts that its GDP will rise by an average six per cent a year. Foreign direct Investment has gone from US$15 billion in 2002 to US$37 billion in 2006 and US$46 billion in 2012.

DP World Nhava Sheva, located in Jawaharlal Nehru Port near India’s commercial capital Mumbai, is also the country’s busiest. It is India's first privately managed container terminal.

BTN: Home territory now and Jebel Ali is seeing further development, what are you doing here? Also in other parts of the Middle East? MS: Jebel Ali Port is DP World’s flagship facility and, as the world’s ninth largest container port, plays a vital role in serving world markets with more than 98 weekly services connecting Jebel Ali to more than 115 direct ports of call across the world. With an average monthly throughput in excess of one million TEU over the past two years, it serves as a gateway to the wider region and is a key enabler of economic growth in Dubai and the UAE. Just recently, the Terminal 3 project was inaugurated by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and is set to be the world’s largest semi-automated facility. BTN: Finally, in terms of new developments, what is happening in India? MS: India is one of fastest growing markets in the world and we are committed to supporting that growth into the future. We operate five container terminals

BTN: Asia is a mature market so what is your commitment to this region? MS: We have a long term commitment to the Asia Pacific region which is important to world trade and provides us with opportunities for growth. We have invested in additional capacities and automation and have undertaken process improvements to enhance efficiency. One of our strategies is to focus on terminals which are gateways to larger hinterlands or which offer high potential for origin and destination cargoes. BTN: Finally, what is the long term strategy for DP World? DP World: Our long term strategy is built on four key pillars: driving sustained long-term shareholder value; creating a satisfied and profitable customer experience; developing efficient, safe and secure methods of managing world trade and creating a learning and growth environment for our people.

MORE INFORMATION For more on Dubai head over to Hall 22.A/103 for a chat with representatives from the Department of Tourism & Commerce Marketing or head over to


A PASSION FOR PERFECTION At Swiss么tel The Stamford, you are assured of the highest standards of quality, reliability and genuine Swiss hospitality. Strategically located in the heart of Singapore with worldclass shopping, dining, entertainment, business opportunities, and major transportation nodes at its door step, Swiss么tel The Stamford offers 1,261 well-appointed guestrooms, and 15 lifestyle and dining choices for a multi-dimensional experience.


Having been recognised as the World’s Leading Car Hire by the World Travel Awards in 2013, Avis topped off another year of success. In 2014 the brand has continued to make headlines, and here Breaking Travel News brings you some of the latest. First up, Avis Car Rental recently confirmed it had selected a licensee to launch car rental operations in Laos and Cambodia. Avis Car Rental will officially enter both markets with the opening of airport and city facilities in Luang Prabang, Pakse and Vientiane in Laos; and Phnom Penh and Siam Reap in Cambodia making Avis the first international car 48

rental company to operate in each of the countries. “Strengthening our global position remains a high priority as we seek to drive sustained, profitable growth,” said Patric Siniscalchi, president, Latin America/Asia-Pacific, Avis Budget Group. “Our licensee agreement with RMA Group will allow us

to expand our global footprint and help to ensure that we are well-positioned to realise the growth potential of the Avis brand in each country.” The new Avis facilities will serve local and international customers with a "one-stop" mobility solution. Residents and visitors will benefit from Avis' world-class products and

services, including a wide range of well-maintained, late-model vehicles, short- and long-term rentals, personal and corporate car leasing programs, premium chauffeur and transfer services and outstanding customer service. Customers will be able to book reservations at www. over the course of this month as locations open. “RMA is uniquely positioned to facilitate Avis Car Rental's plan for growth," Kevin Whitcraft, chief executive officer, RMA Group. “We have long-established vehicle sales and distribution infrastructures in Cambodia and Laos, and we are the partner of choice to some of the world's largest retail franchises in the Asia-Pacific region. RMA is ready to support the enhancement of Avis' global position as a leader in its sector, and will do so by providing best-in-class service in these two countries.” Avis' legacy in Asia can be traced back to 1970, when the Company opened its first location in Hong Kong. Operations in Singapore, the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia and Pakistan followed. Operations have grown steadily throughout the region ever since, including Avis' leading presence in China, which began in 2002. Avis now has approximately 300 rental locations in Asia. COMMERCIAL LEADERSHIP In the UK, Avis Budget UK has announced the strengthening of its management team, with the appointment of Louisa Bell as commercial director. Bell will be responsible for driving further success across the corporate business, overseeing all customer-facing revenue generation including the business-to-business, consumer and intermediary business. She brings over 15 years experience within the travel industry, having previously held roles at Eurostar,

British Airways and also sitting on the board of the Institute of Travel and Meetings. Bell joins Avis Budget UK from Cigna HealthCare, where she was commercial director for the UK. Kaye Ceille, managing director, Avis Budget UK, commented: “Providing our customers with the very best service possible is a priority for us and we’re confident having someone with such a wealth of experience will allow us to continue driving success throughout our business and the car rental market. We welcome Louisa to the Avis Budget UK team.” INDIA With the opening of its first rental location in Vadodara, in the state of Gujarat, Avis India has expanded its network to 20 cities and 45 rental locations, the most of any rental car company operating in India. “With India now ranked as the world's third-largest economy, we see new opportunities to expand our network and range of services to more industrial and business centres throughout the country,” said Patric Siniscalchi, president, Latin America/Asia-Pacific, Avis Budget Group. “We have invested in our India joint venture specifically to further expand our presence in this fast-growing vehicle rental market, and to improve our brand position in India by increasing our fleet and network there.” Avis locations throughout India are conveniently located in major downtown areas and industrial centres, with pick-up and drop-off service provided to and from major airports and rail stations. Avis has been operating in India for more than 14 years, with a fleet of approximately 2,000 premium cars, through a joint venture of Avis Budget Group and The Oberoi Group, one of Asia's leading hospitality companies.

hub for business and leisure,” said Sunil Gupta, chief executive officer, Avis India. “The opening of our new office was necessitated by more and more corporations coming to the city. We want to provide them with Avis' high-quality products and premium service here as well.” Avis India's expansion efforts also include establishing new service hubs in existing markets including Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune and Cochin. "We have expanded our network to bring our vehicles closer to where our customers are based," said Mr. Gupta. "We now have an Avis India rental station located within five miles or less of any strategic corporate client location, thus making business rentals even more convenient." Avis India is an industry leader in quality and reliability of service. Special services offered include both self-drive and chauffeur-drive cars, with a complete range of vehicles including Audi, Mercedes, Volkswagen, Toyota, Honda and many more. Avis Car Rental operates one of the world’s best-known car rental brands with approximately 5,750 locations in more than 165 countries. Avis has a long history of innovation in the car rental industry and is one of the world’s top brands for customer loyalty. Avis is owned by Avis Budget Group, which operates and licenses the brand throughout the world. MORE INFORMATION For more information visit www. of head over to Hall 9/101 here at ITB Berlin this year.

"Vadodara, the third largest city in Gujarat, is growing as an important

Strengthening our global position remains a high priority as we seek to drive sustained, profitable growth


Rixos The Palm, Dubai is a fantastic resort combining leisure, business and holiday with family entertainment and activities, offering meeting venues and business services on an area of ten acres. Here Breaking Travel News takes a look around.

A TOUR OF RIXOS THE PALM, DUBAI Rixos The Palm, Dubai offers contemporary and spacious bedrooms for the comfort and privacy of families. Furthemore, the resort has a range of restaurants, lounges and bars overlooking the Gulf Sea as well as sophisticated banquet and meeting space. The hotel features 231 spacious and comfortable rooms and suites with sweeping views in every direction. Rixos The Palm, Dubai is proud to introduce a new and unique culinary experience by serving authentic Turkish specialities, Italian cuisine and freshest seafood dishes. Sophistication combined with sweeping views: bars offer a selection of options, with emphasis on the exclusive wines and Rakis, as well as a variety of cocktails, specialties, liqueurs and fine beverages from around the world inspired by the taste and favourite colours of the specialised bartenders.

Rixos Royal Spa is a luxury health and beauty centre, offering water rituals, massages, body therapies and skin care regimens derived from a global menu of traditional and contemporary practices. The spa also features a fitness centre where personal trainers will tailor-make your fitness programme to suit your personal needs. In addition to one-on-one attention, trainers can also create group programs. Rixos Royal Spa offers six private wellness cabanas overlooking the hotel’s sandy beach and the Palm Island, featuring an exclusive mini Jacuzzi entrance of every cabana, which leads into a joint semi Olympic pool. Well designed and impeccably furnished, wellness cabanas give you the option of spending the day being pampered by a dedicated team which helps you to unwind in a stunning and luxurious environment, re-discovering calmness.

Rixos The Palm, Dubai specialises in combining ideal meeting venues with impeccable service and exceptional contemporary locations. From an exclusive board meeting to product launches or corporate events, private receptions and party celebrations, the hotel caters to all occasions with the meeting halls all situated on its lobby level for easy access. MORE INFORMATION For more on Rixos The Palm or any of the brand’s properties head over to or visit Hall 22.A/103 here at ITB Berlin 2014.


Conrad Dubai opens in United Arab Emirates Glitterati from Dubai society have celebrated the essential mix of modern elegance and rich local heritage of Conrad Dubai as Hilton Worldwide’s luxury brand opens in the United Arab Emirates for the first time.

More than 400 of Dubai’s elite crowd were enthralled by a cavalcade of thoughtfully planned cultured events threading the arts, music and cuisine into a seamless blend designed to capture the quintessential stylish and intuitive spirit that is Conrad Hotels & Resorts. On arrival, guests were greeted by a carnival of colour, light and sounds that included fire dancers, an authentic live Arabic art experience of Ayyalah dance and the famous celebratory, rhythmic, chanting dance drawn from Middle East history. Drawing on his extensive culinary experience, Conrad Dubai’s Michelin chef, Massimo Mantarro, produced an exclusive menu for the event, creating cuisine to reflect the contemporary lifestyle credentials of the hotel and the occasion. John Vanderslice, global head, Conrad Hotels & Resorts, Hilton World-

wide, said: “The official opening event perfectly captured the essential characteristics of the Conrad brand offering guests personalised experiences with sophisticated, locally inspired surroundings and connections to people and places around the corner, and half way around the world.” CONRAD HOTELS & RESORTS Conrad Hotels & Resorts is the destination for the new generation of smart luxury travellers for whom life, business and pleasure seamlessly interact – people who know that the greatest luxury is the luxury of being yourself. A global brand consisting of 23 properties across five continents, Conrad Hotels & Resorts offer guests personalized experiences with sophisticated, locally inspired surroundings and connections to

people and places around the corner or halfway around the world. Intuitive service is delivered with the Conrad Concierge App that puts Conrad’s services and amenities at the guest’s fingertips, whether accessing the luxury hospitality segment’s first comprehensive pre check-in feature or ordering room service to customising the room’s pillow options or arranging reservations at our locally inspired cuisine and spa offerings. Conrad is a global luxury brand of Hilton Worldwide with plans to add 13 more properties to the brand’s portfolio. MORE INFORMATION For more information on the property head over to www. or visit Hall 22.A/103.


The sunny side of life with Emirates Palace

Stretched across 1.3 km of white sandy beach, the Emirates Palace Beach offers several experiences in one visit, including the latest addition - customised spa treatments in your very own beach cabana. An outdoor offering of the luxury treatments available at the Anantara Spa, the exclusive Emirates Palace Beach Club, introduces a new opportunity for rejuvenation and relaxation along the coast of the Arabian Gulf. The milder temperatures of autumn are the best time to visit Abu Dhabi to indulge in the perfect combination of sun, turquoise waters and a wide range of leisure activities. From the East to the West of the resort, there is an array of offerings for both members and a limited number of day users. For the young and young at heart, the Cascades Adventure Pool offers both thrilling rides and a jet-propelled lazy river with intermittent waterfalls to refresh bathers. Nestled among


palm trees, the East Pool with both a kids and separate adults-only section, allows guests and members alike to turn down the fun by a couple of notches with Jacuzzis, sun loungers, African day beds and pool hammocks, as they savour a range of healthy food options and mixers available at Las Brisas restaurant. A bicycle ride or jog through the well-manicured gardens will lead guests along a six-kilometre path of discovery. From cricket and football pitches to floodlit tennis courts, badminton, and a beach volleyball court, members and day-users can explore a variety of activities and decide if they would prefer to stay dry or if they would rather take a dip in the Arabian Gulf.

Having recently been awarded Blue Flag accreditation, the clear blue waters of the Emirates Palace lagoon meet the highest international standards of water quality and environmental safety. With complimentary access to non-motorised water sports like snorkelling, kayaking, paddle boarding, wind surfing and sailing, guests can choose from a wide range of activities to fill their day. For those who like the added thrill of an engine, water skiing and wakeboarding are definite must-tries. Beyond the beach and plethora of activities available, members and day-users can enjoy traditional Bedouin hospitality with Arabic coffee or saffron tea and dates under the ‘Bedouin Tents of Arabia’ or a camel ride along the coast for an extra touch of local culture. Parents can bring the whole family and still find time to relax as kids between the ages of five and twelve are catered for by Emirates Palace’s dedicated Sarab Land team who will keep their interest peaked with full schedule of fun games and activities. Cascades, located at the West Pool, offers a selection of international cuisine, as well as, a special menu for kids in a relaxed and casual atmosphere. WORLD TRAVEL AWARDS In other news, Emirates Palace general manager, Holger Schroth, along with two members of his management team recently flew to Doha, Qatar to accept two World Travel Awards. Following years of success, the property picked up the trophies for ‘World’s Leading Luxury Beach Resort’ and ‘World’s Leading Hotel Suite’, for the Palace Suite at Emirates Palace, in 2013. “We are very pleased to receive two prestigious industry awards this year,” said Schroth. “It is another great achievement for the whole team at Emirates Palace, and we are very humbled to see that our effort to provide the highest standards of hospitality in the iconic, landmark property of Abu Dhabi is being recognized within our industry.” The awards were given at the 20th annual World Travel Award Grand Final Gala Ceremony, hosted by La Cigale Hotel. Emirates Palace has won a handful of prestigious industry awards since its inception in 2005, including the 2012 World Travel Award’s ‘Best World's Leading Conference and Meetings Hotel’ and ‘World's Leading Presidential Suite’.

MORE INFORMATION For more on this world class property head over to Hall 9/217 here at ITB Berlin or visit



The event was this year hosted by La Cigale Hotel, Doha, Qatar, with industry leaders from around the globe in attendance to celebrate the achievement. An expert jury of 200 leading tour operators and industry professionals selected the property, which was historically known as Hotel Ukraina, from a competitive field.

Radisson Royal Hotel, Moscow has taken the title of World’s Leading Luxury Business Hotel at the World Travel Awards Grand Final Gala Ceremony.


This is the fourth time the hotel has taken the award, proving successful strategic development and effective guest communication are an excellent springboard for leadership in the hospitality industry. The hotel’s collection of World Travel Awards now consists of 13 golden statues. World Travel Awards, held annually since 1993, recognises the achievements of the most distinguished members of tourism market. The votes of independent world leading tour operators determine the winners

from the large number of nominees in totality of quality criteria. The winners have the opportunity to use the WTA emblem as a symbol of quality in tourism. RADISSON ROYAL HOTEL UKRAINA Hotel, today Radisson Royal Hotel, Moscow, is a part of the group of legendary and notable buildings of the Russian capital, better known as the Seven Sisters. Distinguished by their exceptional architecture significantly defining the image of Moscow, these Stalin’s skyscrapers are the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Smolenskaya Square, the main building of Moscow State University on Vorobyevy Hills, the building on Kotelnicheskaya Embankment, an administrative and living building near the metro station ‘Krasniye Vorota’, Leningradskaya Hotel in the

Kalanchevskaya street, an apartment building on Kudrinskaya Square, and, of course, UKRAINA Hotel in the Kutuzovsky prospect, the seventh Stalin’s skyscraper. The total area building is more than 88 thousand square meters; its height is 206 meters, including the 73-meter-long spire. The central segment with a tower is balanced with solidity and strict forms of the side wings. The small corner towers and the vases underline the palatial splendour of the building while the spire imparts the excellent strictness. The Soviet symbols in the exterior of the UKRAINA Hotel have lost its political value by now and have become a stylistic flavour. On May 25th, 1957 UKRAINA Hotel was triumphantly presented to the public. Being the highest hotel in Europe at that period, it amazed everyone with the splendour of its interiors and welcomed guests from all over the world. Half-century later, in 2007, started large-scale renovation works, meant not only to return the hotel’s original look, but also to modernize old engineer systems, to implement lately innovated technical equipment. The walls of the public areas have been tiled with rare sorts of Italian and Spanish marble, the floor has been decorated with a colour granite from India. White columns are performed in an Italian marble. MORE INFORMATION For more information on the property head over to or visit Hall 2.1/210, Hall 2.1/101 here at ITB Berlin.


Ritz Carlton, Riyadh welcomes World Luxury Expo The fifth World Luxury Expo has been successfully hosted at the luxurious RitzCarlton, Riyadh. The highly anticipated three day event was title sponsored by American Express and held in association with The Saudi Investment Bank. On the first day of the event, HRH Prince Khalid bin Abdulrahman bin Abdullah Alfaisal was assisted by young Shaekha Al Saleh in officially inaugurating the American Express World Luxury Expo in association with The Saudi Investment Bank to an audience of VIP guests and other dignitaries. To set the tone, on arrival invited guests were welcomed to a grand display of a Rolls-Royce Phantom 2014, valued at USD$ 570,000. The exhibition showcased selected luxury brands and services, from a broad selection of luxury categories, appealing to a highly discerning and select group of VIP guests. For the admirers of oriental perfumes, Saad Bashammakh presented oud fragrances made of the rarest Agarwood; the oud on display at the Expo was valued at USD$ 267,000 per kilogram. Another highlight was a 19-carat highest quality, fancy diamond with emerald cut pendant worth USD$ 1.89 million, showcased by Yessayan Diamonds. 60

The “Porta” key – an article of everyday use – was transformed into a piece of jewellery with an individual and sophisticated design, making it a valuable item that reflects the personality of its owner. The most luxurious and expensive, limited edition jewelled keys made from gold, platinum and studded with diamonds, had been flown in especially from Germany for the Expo. Showcased by “Porta”, the keys were individually crafted by CES, a German manufacturer with a rich heritage dating back to 1840. Only 99 pieces of this special range of keys have been crafted. Nizar Abou Hassan, director premium products Management, American Express Saudi Arabia Limited, said: “Our promise to deliver service excellence and world class experiences are showcased in our renewed commitment to supporting the World Luxury Expo in 2014. The dedicated Cardmember’s access lane along with the American Express Salon Prive’ offered new and exclusive experiences to our Cardmembers and guests.”

As part of their unique experiences offering, American Express cardmembers were invited to test drive the latest Ferrari on the streets of Riyadh alongside a Formula 1 instructor. World Luxury Expo features carefully selected exhibitors from luxury categories including fine art, high-end jewellery, fashion, hand-crafted time pieces, designer furniture and exquisite table settings, fine dining, luxury executive cars and sports cars and luxury travel. All participating exhibitors are recognised within their respective fields, showcasing superior quality and craftsmanship. Samer R. Al Rayyan, assistant general manager , personal banking at The Saudi Investment Bank, added: “We are again proud to be associated with AMEX World Luxury Expo. Our sponsorship yet again demonstrates our commitment to delivering world class banking services and products designed to cater to the affluent lifestyle of the our valued platinum and premium clientele and invited guests who attended the event.” A selection of other luxury goods and services which invited guests

enjoyed viewing at World Luxury Expo included Ajmal Perfumes, Al Faisaliah ladies spa, Al Mashreq Boutique Hotel, organic premium skincare range by Alternatifs, Arabic artworks by Art Al Howaymel, collectors pieces by Asag Art, Audio Video Corner, luxury accessories by BB Luxury, BMW, Casa D’ Argento Furniture, Citrus Art collection from the Far East, Evian, Golden Caviar, Fiat “Gucci”, Fitness Time Plus, GRE Assets, Kingdom Key Real Estate, Mercedes-Benz, the finest jewellery by Mouawad, Nayyara Weddings, Sadawi Home, Sea Pros, RollsRoyce Motor Cars, Viper sports car, UBS and Zahid Travel. RITZ CARLTON, RIYADH Designed by Al Rasheed Engineering Company and constructed by Oger International, The Ritz-Carlton, Riyadh boasts spectacular fountains that front the one kilometre driveway. Originally envisioned as a royal guest palace for visiting dignitaries and heads of state, the hotel’s stately architecture is modelled on traditional palaces and elegant Arabian residences, with ochre facades blending gracefully with the verdant landscape of the gardens.

Herve Humler, president and chief operations officer of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company explained: “We are extremely proud that The Ritz-Carlton, Riyadh represents our first hotel into the Kingdom. We have been aggressively seeking the right first location in Saudi Arabia for a number of years, and believe there could be no better place for a Ritz-Carlton than in this.” Native palms, 600-year old olive trees from Lebanon, and water fountains abound on the property, providing an oasis of serenity amidst the city centre. “Having such an impressive presence in Riyadh is part of our ongoing strategy to develop world class hotels in cities where the demand for luxury lodging is high,” concluded Humler. MORE INFORMATION For more information visit www.


Etihad builds on global aspirations With Etihad maintaining its place as one of the fastest growing airlines in the world, Breaking Travel News here brings you a selection of the latest news stories from the brand. Etihad Airways has announced plans to increase its services to the Pakistani cities of Islamabad and Peshawar from London and Manchester via its Abu Dhabi base. Starting from March 30th 2014, Etihad Airways will increase its flights to Pakistan’s capital city, Islamabad, from 11 flights a week to a double daily schedule. Services to Peshawar, often referred

to as the “City on the Frontier” due to its strategic location at the crossroads of central and south Asia, increased from two to five per week on February 1st 2014. With the addition of the new services, Etihad Airways will offer 37 weekly flights from four destinations in Pakistan which, along with Islamabad and Peshawar, include Karachi and Lahore. The additional services on each route will be operated by A320 aircraft, fitted with 16 business class and 120 economy class seats, and will increase capacity by 150 per cent Kevin Knight, Etihad Airways’ chief strategy and planning officer, said: “Pakistan is a growing market for Etihad Airways, as passenger demand, connectivity choice, and frequency enhancements continue to drive business and leisure traffic onto our expanding global network.” ETIHAD AIRWAYS SIGNS AIR EUROPA CODESHARE DEAL Etihad Airways and Spanish airline Air Europa have signed a codeshare agreement which will see both


carriers significantly enhance access to and from Spain, the UAE and to destinations across globe. Under the terms of the agreement and subject to regulatory approvals, Air Europa plans to commence a three times a week direct service between Madrid and Abu Dhabi in late 2014. Etihad Airways will place its EY flight code on the new Airbus A330 operated flights, offering direct access to Madrid for the very first time through its global Abu Dhabi hub. The two airlines will work together in the run up to the route launch, with Etihad Airways initially placing its code on Air Europa-operated flights to Madrid from Amsterdam, Brussels and Milan Malpensa and beyond Madrid to Barcelona and Palma de Mallorca. In return, Air Europa will place its UX flight code on Etihad Airways flights from Amsterdam, Brussels and Milan Malpensa to Abu Dhabi. Alvaro Middelmann, advisor to the chairman of Air Europa, left, and Kevin Knight, Etihad Airways chief strategy and planning officer, sign the codeshare agreement between the two airlines.

Furthermore, during summer 2014, both airlines plan to expand the number of codeshare destinations to include new cities in Spain and South America via Madrid, and more cities beyond Abu Dhabi across the Gulf region, Africa, Asia, and Australia. Etihad Airways president James Hogan said: “The fact that Air Europa has chosen Abu Dhabi for the next wave of its international expansion, speaks volumes of what the emirate and our global hub have to offer. We have been keen to offer our customers direct access to the Spanish capital for a number of years, and doing this now in partnership with Air Europa makes perfect business sense.” He concluded: “It is the right thing to do.” ETIHAD HOLIDAYS Etihad Holidays, a division of Etihad Airways, has launched a new travel trade portal in the UK, allowing travel agents to sell and book Etihad Holidays packages. The new portal will build on existing relationships between Etihad Airways and the UK travel trade. Agencies will have the ability to book Etihad Holidays online via the site or by contacting the Etihad Holidays UK Call Center on 0844 499 6660 seven days a week, with prices remaining the same across consumer and trade sites to ensure rate parity. Travel agencies with current Vax Vacation Access membership, or that use trade websites or can have immediate access to the Etihad Holidays portal at Those wishing to register for membership can do so online by following the instructions at, or by contacting their Etihad Airways Account Manager. Etihad Holidays UK launched in August 2013 to cater for growing demand from UK tourists to the UAE and beyond.

It offers luxury packages at over 700 hotels across 140 destinations including transfers and flights which start on-board Etihad Airways, voted the World’s Leading Airline for the past five years at the World Travel Awards. ALITALIA Hogan has also confirmed the airline has entered the final phase of a due diligence process about a possible investment by Etihad in Italian flag-carrier Alitalia. Over the past few weeks both companies and their advisors have sought to determine how a common strategy can be developed which meets the objectives of both parties. A deal is expected any day now. Neither side disclosed the size of the possible investment. However, there have been reports the fast-expanding Gulf airline could take up to 40 per cent. Alitalia flies about 25 million passengers a year, but is weighed down by hundreds of millions of euros in debts. It employs about 14,000 staff and is regarded as one of the country’s more important business assets. Etihad Airways’ minority shareholdings also include 29 per cent of airberlin, 40 per cent of Air Seychelles, 19.9 per cent of Virgin Australia, 3 per cent of Aer Lingus and 24 per cent of India’s Jet Airways. The airline will acquire 49 per cent of Air Serbia in January 2014. Together, Etihad Airways and these seven airlines serve nearly 400 unique destinations with a fleet of more than 500 aircraft. In 2013, they carried a combined total of more than 80.5 million passengers – comparable to large airline partnerships in Europe. Etihad Airways is also considered the World’s Leading Airline by the World Travel Awards. MORE INFORMATION For more information visit www. or head over to Hall 22.B/211 or Hall 10.1/117 here at ITB Berlin.



ANANTARA HOTELS, RESORTS & SPAS’ FIRST DUBAI PROPERTY, ANANTARA DUBAI THE PALM RESORT & SPA IS A LUXURIOUS, UNIQUELY THAI INSPIRED BEACH RESORT, PRESTIGIOUSLY LOCATED ON THE ICONIC PALM JUMEIRAH. Set amidst lush landscaping, 293 guest rooms and villas redefine urban beachfront accommodation, and are designed with tasteful luxury and stunning lagoon and Palm views. Exclusive clusters of only four to eight guest rooms maximise privacy, and 130 of these rooms boast direct access to 10,000 square metres of lagoon pools. The resort offers Anantara Two Bedroom Beach Pool Villas for families and friends, in addition to the Middle East’s first Over Water Villas with most featuring glass viewing panels that reveal underwater glimpses of the Arabian Sea. Lazy days can be enjoyed at Anantara’s 400 metre long private beach, as well as at three beautiful lagoon-inspired pools and a 50 metre shoreline infinity pool. Making the most of the exotic climate, a variety of water sports includes kayaking, wake boarding and paddle boarding, as well as diving and snorkelling adventures. Two well-equipped gyms 64

and two tennis courts extend the choice of energising leisure pursuits. A teens club, Chill and Tuk Tuk Kids Club keep younger guests happily entertained. The Anantara Spa offers distinctive pampering, beauty and wellness journeys from 16 luxurious treatment suites. Indulge in the revitalising traditional Thai Massage or sample one of Anantara Spa’s other signature treatments, such as the indigenous Arabian Massage.

the shisha deck. Romance and special occasions are celebrated with signature Dining by Design journeys, complete with a private chef and butler. Guests can choose from a romantic table for two in a secluded spot on the beach, on the pontoon by the Over Water Villas, or a place of their preference within the resort.

Six restaurants and bars serve a riveting diversity of culinary experiences. Authentic Middle Eastern cuisine, such as hot and cold mezze, shish tawouk and um ali, and refined world flavours are accompanied by Australian-inspired flame grilled delights, specialty Asian and Mediterranean flavours.

The resort incorporates fascinating Thai touches such as floating market boats gliding across the lagoons serving tropical beverages and three wheeler tuk-tuks transporting guests around the resort. While infusing local culture, the resort lobby features a Dubai heritage corner, which showcases various indigenous artifacts and replicas of times gone by. Guests can soak up countless fascinating insights into the plentiful history of Dubai, such as its early pearl-diving heritage.

Casual swim-up bar refreshments can be followed later in the day by charming tea rituals and cocktails on

Exploring the rich culture and mystic of Dubai comes alive with the resort’s Anantara Experiences.

Thrill-seekers can take an adrenaline-pumping dune safari, ending with a traditional Arabic banquet in a Bedouin-style desert camp. A visit to Dubai would be incomplete without a ride in the world’s fastest elevator to the top of the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa. For those in search of history, exploring the ancient Al Fahidi Fort at Dubai Museum makes for an interesting afternoon, while a trip to Musandam off the Omani coast aboard a traditional dhow boat, followed by camping under the stars, provides a breathtaking escape. Stylish indoor meeting and event venues with flexible layout options, as well as elegant outdoor spaces with magnificent views, cater for the

needs of discerning business guests and inspired wedding celebrations. Anantara is renowned for offering journeys rich with discovery in some of the world’s most exotic destinations, and Anantara Dubai The Palm Resort & Spa blends cultural elements from Anantara’s roots in Thailand with the international flair in one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world.

MORE INFORMATION For further information visit or head over to Hall 22.A/103 here at ITB Berlin. 65


World Luxury Expo, in association with The Saudi Investment Bank, hosted it first event of the year in Saudi Arabia in January. The event was hosted by the Ritz-Carlton, Riyadh, which was originally built as royal guest palace for visiting dignitaries and heads of state; a truly befitting host-venue for a luxury event of this kind. Following this success, the event will continue to the serene Park Hyatt, Jeddah from March 14th16th 2014 where the event is title again sponsored by The Saudi Investment Bank. World Luxury 66

Expo, Bahrain is taking place during the much anticipated Formula 1 weekend, April 4th-6th 2014, at the magnificent Ritz-Carlton. Then the event continues to Kuwait at the luxurious Jumeirah Messilah from May 23rd-25th 2014. The team behind the event are also looking forward to expanding into Asia by hosting World Luxury Expo, Seoul at the Grand Hyatt from September 3rd-5th 2014. Each World Luxury Expo features a wonderful selection of carefully selected luxury categories including

fine art, high-end jewellery, fashion, hand-crafted time pieces, designer furniture and exquisite table settings, luxury automobiles, fine dining, private aviation, and luxury travel. All participating exhibitors are leaders in their respective fields, who constantly strive for the ultimate in quality and perfection. World Luxury Expo is in the process of finalising the special pieces that are being showcased by the luxury brands we are working with at each event. In the interim, the team has revealed a few examples of showstopper items that were

showcased at previous World Luxury Expo events. WORLD OF LUXURY On arrival to World Luxury Expo in Abu Dhabi invited guests were welcomed to a grand display of a Rolls-Royce Ghost 1001 Nights Bespoke Edition, valued at $436,562. Three hundred year old jewellery house, Mozafarian, showcased a Royal Collection of exquisite casks to commemorate 2,500 years of the Persian Empire at the same event. The collection’s value is priceless as these are now part of the museum collection. Mozafarian also presented a 171 carat Royal Necklace valued at $15,000,000.

The Sitara of Ka’aba was presented by Barakat Galllery, valued at $ 4,850,000. This magnificent artefact was an external curtain made to cover the door of the Kaab, one of Islam’s holiest sites. It was commissioned in 1181 Hijrah by Sultan Selim III (1761-1808) known for his reforms of the state system as well as for his love of music, poetry, and the arts. Danish Zenvo ST1 Supercar made its UAE debut at World Luxury Expo. This hand-built 7 litre V8 engine supercar has a limited production run with only 15 cars to be built and sold to specially approved customers - valued at $1,000,000. Haute parfumier, House of Sillage, presented a limited edition Pink Enamel Travel Spray that consisted of 122.4 grams of 18kt rose gold, 1.96ct pink sapphire and 3.20ct VSF round brilliant cut diamonds in a pavé setting. Moiseikin Jewellery is renowned for creating one of a kind jewellery pieces and objets d’art, presented the “Horn of Plenty” at the event. This exquisite tourbillon time piece is valued at more than $1,500,000 and con-

sists of over 4,000 diamonds with the total weight of over 30 carats. Kashperia launched the world’s finest and most expensive Guthrah Shawl at World Luxury Expo, Doha. This is a limited edition collection of only ten pieces made from 100 per cent pure Vicuna wool which is hand-spun, hand-woven and handmade with intricate motifs from the Babylonian era. Vicuna wool is sourced from the higher reaches of Peru (above 14,000 feet) and the animal sheds its wool only once every three years. It takes the wool from three animals to make one Guthrah Shawl. The diameter of this wool used by Kashperia is 11 microns (the human hair is only 15-100 microns). Official Formula 1 Opus BERNIE Edition was revealed to Qatar at World Luxury Expo, Doha. An iconic collector’s piece is valued at US $1,000,000. The BERNIE Edition is 1/1, a bespoke Champions Edition Opus, but it will entitle the holder to unique access into the world of Formula One for the 2014 race season. The holder will receive, for each day, of each

race in the 2014; four passes for the Paddock Club, the ultimate in hospitality; two Paddock passes, which are exclusively for the teams or invite only; the chance to have ‘Tea with Mr. E’; and invitations to the exclusive evening events, such as concerts and Black tie parties. This is money can’t buy access into the world of Formula One. As the holder of the BERNIE Edition the owner is also able to transfer individual passes if they themselves choose not to attend.

per square meter, valued at over USD 300 million. Finally, the “most expensive soap in the world,” was presented by Khan Al-Saboun. Made of pure gold dust, olive oil and virgin honey and embedded with diamonds, this special piece is valued at USD 3,800. KEY FACTS For more on World Luxury Expo head over to

Space Expedition Corporation presented a 1:6 scale model of the SXC Lynx Mark 1 spaceship. Something for the luxury traveller who aspires to an “out of this world” experience by crossing the ultimate boundary into space. Tickets cost USD100,000 each and 250 have been sold so far. The most expensive penthouse in the world, Tour Odéon, which was showcased by La Conciergerie Du Qatar. Rising above the waters of the Mediterranean and the captivating Principality of Monaco, the Tour Odéon penthouse is the world’s most expensive property


100% FULLY-FLAT BED ON ALL LONG-HAUL FLIGHTS IN BUSINESS CLASS. Fly business class with us, and you can catch up on the serious business of sleeping. Now with guaranteed fully-flat beds on all long-haul Etihad Airways and airberlin flights, we’ll make sure you arrive rested and ready for business. Enjoy double daily services from Dusseldorf, Munich and Frankfurt as well as daily services from Berlin to Abu Dhabi, with seamless connections to destinations in Australia, Asia, the Americas, and the Middle East.

With airberlin and Etihad, business is always a pleasure. For more information visit und

*As of April 2014, airberlin Business Class on all long-haul aircrafts will be equipped with fully-flat beds.

St Regis Doha steps up guest experience with Jazz venue St. Regis Hotels & Resorts recently unveiled Jazz at Lincoln Center Doha at The St. Regis Doha marking the first in a series of jazz clubs that St. Regis and JALC aim to create together as part of a unique global partnership.

The 4,500 square foot jazz club, with acoustics and sound system designed by SIA Acoustics, will seat up to 100 guests in a theatrical ambience that recalls a legendary jazz venue of the golden era. “Jazz is the soundtrack of St. Regis, as appealing to today’s global luxury travellers, as it was to New York’s high society who frequented the rooftop ballroom at the landmark hotel in the 1930s to listen to Count Basie, Buddy Rich and other Jazz Age greats,” said Paul James, global brand leader, The Luxury Collection and St. Regis Hotels & Resorts. “As we open the doors of Jazz at Lincoln Center at The St .Regis Doha, we are thrilled to welcome the next generation of jazz legends to the stage.” The opening of The St. Regis Doha less than a year ago marked the brand’s first hotel in Qatar, ideally located within Doha’s newest waterfront destination at Al Gassar Resort between the city’s cultural heritage sites and its emerging commercial hub. The hotel’s distinctive architecture showcases a contemporary design

fused with traditional Arabic touches, an impressive addition to the city’s skyline with two 14-story beachfront towers offering 336 luxuriously appointed guest rooms, including 70 elegant suites and two presidential suites. Following in the tradition of the St. Regis brand’s landmark New York hotel, The St. Regis Doha features the famed hallmarks of St. Regis hotels including signature St. Regis Butler Service, which offers guests bespoke service and beyond expectation experiences. The St. Regis Doha features ten restaurants and lounges, including Opal by Gordon Ramsay as well as Hakkasan, which brings authentic yet contemporary Cantonese cuisine to Doha. The hotel features 16,000 square meters of luxury leisure facilities including an Olympic size swimming pool, a private beachfront, ten luxury pool-side cabanas, the first Remède Spa in the Middle East, a fitness centre and extensive meeting space. Spread across 1,400 square meters of space, Remède Spa at The St. Regis Doha – which opened in June - features 22 treatment rooms, pre-

and post-treatment lounges, as well as male and female relaxation pools and steam rooms, making it one of the largest spas in Doha. The menu at Remède Spa offers a range of customised experiences, from massages and body wraps to beauty treatments and spa packages. There is an exclusive selection of treatments inspired by local characteristics and traditions. The opening of The St. Regis Doha marks the second of three St. Regis hotels slated to debut within a year in the Middle East, including the recently opened St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort, Abu Dhabi, as well as The St. Regis Abu Dhabi which will open in December of this year on the Corniche. St. Regis will continue to expand its portfolio with the eagerly anticipated debut of The St. Regis Mauritius Resort in September.

Starwood continues to lengthen its lead in luxury hospitality, offering guests and residents exceptional levels of service and luxury experiences in a wide range of destinations around the world. The St. Regis Doha has been recognised by the World Travel Awards, taking the title of World’s Leading New Hotel at the Grand Final Gala Ceremony in 2012. MORE INFORMATION For more information visit www. or head over to Hall 22.B/206.

From Bal Harbour to Bangkok, Saadiyat Island to Shenzhen, the St. Regis brand caters to a new generation of luxury travellers and continues to thoughtfully build its portfolio in the most sought after destinations at the heart of the today’s new grand tour. With the St. Regis brand’s growth,


MAHARAJAS’ EXPRESS A LUXURY OFFERING FROM IRCTC Operated by Indian Railway Catering & Tourism Corporation, Maharajas’ Express is considered the finest in the world of luxury travel.


Maharajas’ Express train is enviable in many aspects – most spacious cabins, water filtration plants in each coach, live TV, environmentally friendly toilets, Wi-Fi internet connectivity, CCTV cameras in public areas to ensure security, individual climate control in each cabin. An experience of a life-time, a journey on Maharajas’ Express brings one closer to bygone era of imperial India. So while the chefs trained in world cuisine tickle the taste buds with their gourmet delights from the state-ofthe- art kitchen, the barmen, servers and valets pamper guests and take care of all their needs during the journey. The train has two fine dining restaurants: The Mayur Mahal with a peacock theme and the Rang Mahal with its hand painted ceiling. Savouring the culinary delights sitting in either of the two restaurants, one can have a glimpse of the picturesque hinterland from the large panoramic windows specially created for the train. This, coupled with piped music, makes dining a memorable experience. The menus are a mix of traditional Indian and continental dishes, to suit different tastes and all guests can dine at a same time on board. For book lovers, the train has a collection of titles on Indian art, culture, history. Guests can relax in the Safari Bar or the Rajah Club, and choose from a selection of choicest on-thehouse wines and liquors. The train offers four categories of accommodation – all with en suite facilities. There are 14 guest carriages featuring 43 cabins in total, which include 20 Deluxe Cabins, 18 Junior Suites, 4 Suites and one truly classical Presidential Suite. The latter is ideal for families, with two bedrooms (one double and one twin) as well as separate sitting and dining areas. The master bedroom offers a full size bath tub. Each coach has a valet to take care of the guests. All cabins have direct dialing telephones to make international calls, spacious wardrobes with electronic lock safes, TVs and DVD players. To take care of medical emergencies, there is an in-house paramedic available round the clock. The incredible journeys on offer let one to explore India’s diversity, discovering timeless traditions and exotic locales, such as a visit to one of the largest dinosaur fossil park at Balasinor, the erotic temples of Khajuraho, and a regal meal at the

shimmering lake city of Udaipur with the opportunity to meet royal families - all of these in true blue majesty. The range of various tour itineraries also includes splendid gala events and a range of activities such as elephant polo at Jaipur, cocktail and barbeque sundowner on the sand dunes of Bikaner, wild life safari at Ranthambhore, champagne breakfast overlooking the immortal beauty of the Taj Mahal, boat ride at the holy city of Ganges and much more…. Luxury train travel in India has come a long way since the introduction of the Palace on Wheels in 1982 for promotion of tourism in Rajasthan. The most recent and unarguably the most luxurious tourist train in India with finesse at par with the Orient Express of the West, Maharajas’ Express has redefined the art of elegant travel in India. Radiating sheer opulence, Maharajas’ Express offers a fascinating voyage across some of the finest destinations in India manifesting the true spirit and kaleidoscope of the country. One of the most expensive and luxurious luxury train rides in the world, the salons of the Maharaja Express train draws inspiration from the private saloons of the erstwhile Maharajas of India. Even before the inception of rail travel in India, Maharajahs of India had a keen fascination with these moving wonders on wheels invented by James Watt. In the era of Raj, many Maharajahs had their own personal carriages draped in luxury used for occasions such as state visits, nuptial sojourns and hunting trips. Many had been built and designed in art deco style. Sylvan inlays, exquisite carvings and elegant tapestries along with exquisite mirror and jewel work exuded an unmistakable élan. All this and more spoke volumes about the splendor and pomp of the Maharajahs of erstwhile princely states of India. For setting new standards of comfort and style, becoming arguably the most luxurious train in the world and ushering in a new era of travel and hospitality, Maharajas’ Express was recognised by the World Travel Awards as the World’s Leading Luxury Train in 2013.

MORE INFORMATION For more information head over to the official website at 71

Modern Wonder: GARDENS OF BABYLON Having been recognised as Europe’s Leading Spa & Wellness Resort by the World Travel Awards in 2013, Gardens of Babylon, located in Bodrum, Turkey, has seen its international profile skyrocket. Here Breaking Travel News takes a look at what is on offer at this globally recognised location.

Renovated in 2010, Gardens of Babylon is located in the KadÄąkale region of Bodrum, just three kilometres from the town of Turgutreis, and offers views over the islands of Kos and Kalimnos. Built on approximately 100 acres of lush green grassland, the gentle slopes of the hotel ensure all rooms overlook the sea, or nearby lakes. Guests are welcomed by gushing waterfalls, a private marina and, of course, the 300 metre long beach - the most famous in this area of Turkey. Seven swimming pools delight visitors or all ages, while the cuisine on offer is considered among the best in the region.


Some 83 individually styled suites and villas are on offer, each featuring modern decor and brightly coloured furnishings, as well as either a marble or laminate floor. All come with a private bathroom with a shower/spa bathtub and a hairdryer and offer a double bed. They are equipped with a direct dial telephone, an LCD TV, internet access and a safe. A minibar, centrally regulated air conditioning and either a balcony or a terrace are also provided in all accommodation as standard. The star attraction is, however, the Babylon Health Club. With a wide

selection of options available, the health conscience can take an invigorating walk through the grounds; play a whole host of sports; nip into the fitness centre, where the latest Technogym equipment is waiting; or take a class in everything from Pilates to Kinesis. Golf fans can also take advantage of the links course at Ortakent, a few minutes away near Bodrum. But once the hard work is done, why not indulge at one of the many Gardens of Babylon restaurants? Here legendary concepts are bought to life; Piazza offers its take on

Italian cuisine, while Eiffel brings holidaymakers the best of France. Nunu brings the freshest fish from nearby oceans; Elani presents a modern twist on Greek delicacies; Sagu Sushi Bar brings the finest Japanese dining to the table, while Shish goes for a traditional Ottoman angle. Restaurants serve a la carte concepts, taking humdrum cuisine into the artistic realm. Gardens of Babylon also hosts wedding parties, welcoming happy couples to a specially designated area named after the capital city of the Babylonian civilization, Babylonia. Seating up to 1,500, every wedding can be catered for, offering open air services guests will never forget. Gardens of Babylon is located on the Bodrum peninsula between Turgutreis and Gumusluk, and enjoys spectacular views over the Aegean Sea. Local public transport passes in front of the hotel and offers guests links to nearby towns, including the cosmopolitan resort of Bodrum, which is just a few kilometres away. The town of Turgutreis, where guests will find restaurants, a weekly market, bars and shops, is just five minutes away by car. The resort is 49 kilometres to Bodrum Airport. MORE INFORMATION Head over to


When business rhymes with pleasure

Pullman Timi Ama Sardegna Viale dei Ginepri, 3 - Sardegna - 09049 Villasimius ITALY

Photo: Š Enzo Baradel - DR

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Paris . Sao Paulo . London . Shanghai . Dubai . Bangkok . Sydney . Berlin . Bali . Barcelona FOR INFORMATION & RESERVATION, CONTACT US : +3907079797001 - EMAIL : H3040@ACCOR.COM


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THE FIVE-STAR PULLMAN TIMI AMA SARDEGNA HAS UNVEILED PLANS FOR A TOP-TO-TOE RENOVATION OF ITS GUEST ROOMS AND PRIVATE BEACH. THE ANNOUNCEMENT FOLLOWS A THREE-YEAR RENOVATION PROGRAMME OF ITS PUBLIC AREAS AND SPA. The rejuvenated rooms promise to offer upscale design and enhanced comfort. Meanwhile, the beach is also undergoing a visual transformation, with a new a footpath, sun umbrellas, gazebos and luxury sunbeds all guaranteeing even more comfort. PULLMAN REBRANDING The programme forms part of the implementation of new brand standards in line with the new Pullman identity. This aims to target a new-generation of cosmopolitan, hyper-connected and mobile travellers which are increasingly mixing business with leisure. Pullman has unveiled a new logo – inspired by the ying and yang symbol expressing this dual aspect of its new target audience; a new motto – “Play Hard Work Hard”; and the “Bleisure” tagline (a combination of “business” and “leisure”) to reflect its new identity. As part of this repositioning, Pullman hotels and resorts will offer reinvented services with an emphasis on artistic, culinary and visual experience, and Pullman Timi Ama Sardegna won’t be an exception. The hotel has worked with famous designers to create iconic objects that link its hotels around the world.

The lobby of the hotel, for example, has been embellished with a globe designed by Mathieu Lehanneur that symbolizes the Pullman brand’s cosmopolitan nature. Artnight by Pullman is a collection of contemporary art, held in collaboration with a local artist. In an enchanting position, in the extreme southeast of the island, Pullman Timi Ama Sardegna is set 55 km from Cagliari International Airport and 2 km from the small town of Villasimius. Sitting in an idyllic bay dominated by an Aragonese tower, the hotel is shrouded by Mediterranean vegetation. Inside the Protected Area of Capo Carbonara, among a natural salty lake and a marvellous white sandy beach, discover in Pullman Timi Ama Sardegna a new state of mind. The 275 rooms offer a peaceful hideout. Classic rooms, with bay and garden side, Superior and Deluxe rooms, both with bay, garden and mountain side, and four suites that are individually and uniquely furnished. All the rooms have a balcony or a veranda and all facilities and amenities guests need.

The resor t is not just about holidays, but boundless holidays, with special attention placed on guests with reduced mobility (including rooms and common areas that are appropriately set up). The relaxing Pullman spirit is also reflected in the new Chill Out spaces in the Thalassa Hall: comfor table chairs to relax and chat surrounded by panels that change colour regularly, i-pod stations and library corner. Spend time in one of the three restaurants, where the food combines the great French tradition of cooking with the latest trends in Fusion from across the world, giving rise to an enormous amount of culinary variety. “La Veranda” is beautifully set next to the pool, and you can try the innovative “open kitchen”. The “Mediterraneo” is an à la car te restaurant by the pool, ideal for every appetite both at lunch and in the evening. “I Ginepri” is panoramically located on the beach, the dishes are light at lunch time and focus on the best regional and Italian specialities at night, when the atmosphere is elegant and romantic.

Four bars serve a vast array of cocktails and snacks for sharing time with friends in a relaxing atmosphere. Pullman Timi Ama Sardegna has four conference rooms, including two with an outdoor covered terrace and two open-air terraces. The views make any work meeting unforgettable. The Thalassotherapy Institute is a wellness haven inspired by the French tradition of seawater cures. At this ‘oasis within an oasis’, tranquillity and relaxation are ensured by the professional team, and a gentle setting. The treatments range from seawater cures, wraps to hydromassage and traditional massages. The hotel also had a well-equipped fitness centre, with the option to get a personal trainer to design your programme.

MORE INFORMATION For more info visit or head over to Hall 9/215 at ITB Berlin. 75



LIVE YOUR DREAMS Ever dreamed of a five-star luxury suite which opens onto a stunning beach and blends in effortlessly with the sea? Ever imagined playing alongside trainers from Chelsea Football Club or the stars of tennis, rugby, cricket and golf? How about dinner courtesy of the most famous Michelin-starred chefs? This is Forte Village’s constellation. And you are the real stars. + 39 070 9218820

Forte Village prepares for 2014 season Despite being considered the World’s Leading Resort by the World Travel Awards, the leadership at Forte Village, in Sardinia, Italy, never rests on its laurels. With the 2014 season set to be another record breaker, Breaking Travel News here takes a look at some of the new developments designed to wow guests afresh.

In response to popular demand, Forte Village has announced the opening of an additional luxury villa ahead of the resort opening for its 2014 season. This elegant new 272 m² villa will be the largest on the resort and will be surrounded by a Mediterranean garden, lending it a sense of tranquillity which will be echoed by the villa’s open plan spaces and natural colour tones chosen to reflect its stunning environment. The villa’s interior will boast an immensely chic décor, featuring original, contemporary Sardinian craftsmanship. The ground floor will feature two magnificent bedrooms with king-size beds, each with their own sumptuous travertine bathroom offering a separate bath and shower; two living rooms with sofa beds with views of the garden; a well equipped kitchen; two dining rooms, one indoors and the other outdoors with


a barbecue area, ideal for enjoying Sardinia’s balmy evenings. The first floor will also offer two further splendid bedrooms with kingsize beds, each with a bathroom and terrace providing outdoor living space. The private garden will offer a fabulous private pool split into three parts – one for dipping, another for swimming and a third whirlpool area. The sumptuous Sardinian garden surrounding the pool will provide privacy, colour and aroma. A dedicated butler and personal chef will ensure that a stay in this remarkable villa is truly memorable. HOTEL CASTELLO In addition to a stunning new villa in 2014, Forte Village is also increasing its luxury accommodation with the creation of a magnificent Imperial Suite which will be located on the fourth floor of Hotel Castello.

Covering an area of 250m² in total, the suite will offer spectacular views of the Mediterranean as well as the surrounding pine groves and mountains. The suite includes a stunning bedroom with four poster bed, 2 bathrooms with imperial sized bathtubs and showers and a living room featuring hand-made earthenware floor tiles with adjoining terrace. This stunning Presidential Suite will feature new fixtures and fittings in 2014. Of particular note will be the hand-made earthenware floor tiles and a stunning new ceiling design. The Presidential Suite terrace will be like no other, offering an oasis of lemon trees, hibiscus, bougainvillea, ivy and perfumed herbs as well as a beautiful pergola, fountain and superb whirlpool tub. The 30 plus Executive Mare Rooms at Hotel Castello are also enjoying a


fresh make-over in preparation for summer 2014. What will make the rooms truly unique is the choice of stunning colours and materials, from the travertine floors to the mosaic in the bathroom, in addition to a new Mediterranean inspired shower. There are further surprises in the super-chic design of the furnishings and the new veranda, which extends the room outwards with views of the sea. A new, contemporary Reception area will also welcome guests to Hotel Castello this year. Featuring a comfortable seating area, coffee bar and library, this newly refurbished area will feel like an elegant home. Natural colour tones from the white walls to the dove grey delicate wood panelling, in addition to new floor to ceiling windows overlooking the gardens, will enhance the feeling of serenity. The enchanting swimming pool at Hotel Castello will boast a new look when the resort re-opens in 2014 with elegant ‘washed stone’ tiles in shades of white and sand. The sunbathing area around the pool will 80

also be redesigned to ensure greater privacy and a direct link to the beach. MAIN AVENUE Summer 2014 gets off to a great start with a brand new design for the avenue leading up to Forte Village, named after the resort’s founder, Lord Forte. The design will include improvements in landscaping, colour, light and vistas. Forte Village’s wellness centre, Thalasso del Forte, will also now on be opening in winter as well as summer due to the addition of a new canopy covering the sea oil, aloe and relaxation Thalasso tubs. Additional water based treatments and massages will also be available. NEW BIO PARK What could be more delightful for children than to have a chance to wander freely and safely among a variety of animals, including exotic species? Young guests at Forte Village will have the chance to do just that in the resort’s new Bio Park, opening in 2014. Forte Village’s main square and the hub of its evening entertainment, the magnificent Piazza Maria Luigia, will

offer an extraordinary new feature in 2014: four wonderfully chic private boxes located above the auditorium. A truly exclusive way to experience great music and entertainment, whilst enjoying the finest champagnes in the company of close friends. MICHELIN STAR Forte Village has announced the Belvedere will re-open in 2014 with a Michelin star, recently awarded to this magnificent restaurant at Villa del Parco, a member of Leading Hotels of the World. Antonello Arrus, a 52 year old Sardinian, has been the proud chef at the Belvedere for the past ten years. Antonello combines the great flavours of Italian cuisine with local Sardinian ingredients and his own innovative and imaginative flair to provide a fresh and memorable culinary experience. In addition to Forte Village’s already very extensive collection of restaurants, the resort is opening a stunning new Bistrot in 2014. Open until late at night and set in beautiful gardens overlooking the sea, the Bistrot will offer an enchanting com-

bination of Italian cuisine, live music and breath-taking views. Great news for keen tennis players – next summer Forte Village will be converting two of its tennis courts into clay courts. The resort’s Tennis Academy boasts 12 high quality courts in total and will be hosting the prestigious ITF Futures between March and November 2014, which includes a total of 40 International Tennis Federation tournaments (male and female). Offering prize money of $10,000 a week or a total over the period of $420,000, The ITF Futures are aimed at young talented players aged between 16 and 30, some of whom will undoubtedly become the future’s next tennis stars. In addition the resort will be hosting tennis champions between July 21st-28th for the ATP Challenger tournament with prize money of just under $50,000. Further to the success of the Sports Academies at Forte Village, the resort will be adding a Boxing Academy in summer 2014. The Academy will be run by a well-known boxing

champion who will be sharing their expertise and instilling the thrill of this popular sport in all those who participate. Top of his game in the UK and one of the most well-known personal trainers in the world, with celebrity clients that include Tom Ford, Naomi Campbell, John Galliano, Trudi Styler and Sting, fitness guru Matt Roberts will be lending his name to a brand new Fitness Academy at Forte Village. An extraordinary opportunity to discover the secrets of the perfect body; tone up in summer for year-long results. FORTE VILLAGE TRIATHLON Following the immense success of the resort’s first triathlon in 2013, which attracted athletes from all over Italy and Europe, planning for the 2014 Forte Village Triathlon has already begun. This world class event is open to everyone – from professionals to amateurs of all ages. The second Triathlon will take place on 26 October 2014, taking full advantage of the spectacular Sardinian sea and landscape with challenging, tailor made circuits for swimming, cycling and running. Following the contest, competitors and their families can relax and enjoy all the pleasures provided by this stunning resort. EXTRA INFORMATION Forte Village - a collection of high-profile hotels, where the beauty of nature, charm and well-being come together - is set against the magnificent background of the south-west coast of Sardinia. The high quality services together with the captivating beauty of the surroundings have made of Forte Village the ideal destination for families, couples and all those looking for relaxation, sport and fun at competitive levels. This is also an astonishing world able to satisfy the most refined palates with 21 restaurants, besides the specialties prepared by four Miche-

lin starred chefs Gordon Ramsay, Rocco Iannone, Giancarlo Perbellini and finally the wonderful, truly deserved Michelin star, that is now shining on the talent and professional growth of Antonello Arrus: the proud Sardinian who has been chef for the past ten years at the Belvedere, the magnificent restaurant at Villa del Parco, pearl of the Leading Hotels of the World. Forte Village is moreover a source of wellness with its Thalasso del Forte: seven pools with different salt density, that become the perfect place to relax and restore balance to body and mind. Lauded as a leading spa, Thalasso del Forte houses the thalassotherapy centre and all the wonderful spa treatments. Spectacular sport activities are also included in collaboration with worldwide famous players and trainers from Chelsea Football Club, English rugby with Austin Healey and Will Greenwood, golf in cooperation with the Wentworth Golf Club, cricket with Alec Stewart, Michael Vaughan and Paul Nixon. Last but not least, tennis with Rocky Loccisano, the famous trainer of Pat Cash, the basket academy in cooperation with CSKA Moscow and the brand new boxing academy. Furthermore Forte Village is designed around children and their dawn to dusk needs. For kids, from toddlers to 12-year-olds, the emphasis is on fun in a safe, secure environment. The ‘Citta dei Bambini’ is not a typical ‘Kid’s Club’ shoved off into a corner - it’s at the heart of the village, a city on a children’s scale, run under the watchful eye of our caring qualified staff. The children’s city offers fantastic workshops where kids can learn to work clay, cook pizza and play and dance, complete the scenario.




For information and reservations, please contact our Reservations Office: Tel. +39 0577 570 808 - email: –

A MAG NIFICENT M EDIE VAL HAM LET J UST OUTSIDE SIENA . In the stunning setting of one of Italy’s most beautiful regions, amid Chianti vines, rolling fields of wheat and long lines of cypress trees, stands Castel Monastero, a tiny 11th-century medieval hamlet just 23 km from Siena. Inside these thousand-year-old walls, Castel Monastero’s rooms, suites and villa pay homage to the harmonious rustic style of Tuscany’s ancient abodes. The Spa at Castel Monastero is the ideal place to rediscover harmony and balance. The weight-loss and detox programmes, beauty treatments and moments of true relaxation help restore health and wellbeing. At our two restaurants, guests can savour the elegant cuisine created by our Chef in partnership with a star of the calibre of Gordon Ramsay, accompanied by local specialities and the finest Tuscan wines.


Montenegro’s rising boutique star Montenegro is one of Europe’s last unexplored tourism frontiers. Since gaining independence from Serbia in 2006, the tiny Adriatic nation has been embarking on an unprecedented drive to establish itself as the number one hotspot for discerning travellers as a route to economic prosperity.

While the natural beauty of Montenegro has always been undeniable (the poet Lord Byron described the coastline as “the most beautiful encounter between land and the sea”), the tourism infrastructure, particularly at the top end of the market, has been somewhat slow in emerging. With its 183 miles of coastline and many medieval towns, the country enjoyed its billing as a tourist hotspot up until the 1980s. Yet, the Yugoslav wars that were fought in neighbouring countries during the 1990s crippled the tourist industry and destroyed the image of Montenegro. Even now the country is still suffering the aftershocks of decades under communist rule and the ensuing war – GDP per capita is just 40 percent of the EU average, and outside the super-rich tourist enclaves the way of life is decidedly middle income. MONTENEGRO’S BOUTIQUE GEM But Montenegro’s Astoria Group is playing a significant role in putting the nation back on the boutique luxury map, and helping forge a blueprint of the nation’s tourism aspirations. Its Boutique Hotel Astoria is located in the heart of the medieval town of

Kotor and has been created from the shell of an ancient palace. Designed by the Greek architect Virginia Kavraki, the hotel oozes boutique opulence and was voted “Montenegro’s Leading Boutique Hotel” at World Travel Awards 2013. The hotel, which has just nine rooms, fuses the mystery of Greek legend with lavish baroque furnishings to create a hedonistic take on the new Montenegro. Its centrepiece is a tree trunk placed in the ground level that stretches to the first floor of the restaurant and represents a “tree of life”. It is complimented by a take on Michelangelo’s “Original Sin” fresco as a symbol of eternal struggle between good and evil. A MODERN PALACE IN THE CAPITAL Astoria’s latest project is Hotel Hemera, named after the goddess of light, in the capital Podgorica. The feel is rustic industrial design combined with elements of hi-tech. Three storey units, with 15 luxury units, where a firework of colours great a pleasant and relaxing

atmosphere, complimented with views across the urban landscape of Podgorica and the old town, Each of the room is equipped with unique furniture made of noble walnut which lends special warmth to the space, whilst guests can also expect the very latest hi-tech wizardry. Guests can also use the wellness centre, which is equipped with a hammam, sauna and sport studio. In addition to the plush accommodation, guests can also enjoy its restaurant where you can tuck into Mediterranean influenced menu of fish, salads and amazing desserts. A special charm of the bar-restaurant at Hemera is its library with over 800 titles in Greek, English, French and other languages.

boutique hotel in the Old town. The architectural elements have remained untouched, and the building remains a classic example of a noble house, whilst the interiors show a strong minimalistic feel. Hotel Astoria is a world of refined details: everything has been carefully chosen, considered and created to please the eye and soothe the spirit. The location - situated in the old town of Budva, hotel Astoria is only a minute away from the local marine. MORE INFORMATION To find out more about the Astoria Group visit:

THE HUB OF TOURISM Budva is the metropolis of Montenegrin tourism thanks to its great beaches, bay islands and historic monuments. The Old town lies on a small peninsula and represents a treasure chest of culture heritage. Situated in the two and a half millennium Old town of Budva, the Hotel Astoria boast just 12 luxury suites in total. It is the first and only 85

San Francisco Church (image courtesy of Casa Gangotena Boutique Hotel)

SOUTH AMERICA’S HOTTEST CITY Composed of an ancient mixture of peoples, cultures and traditions, the city of Quito – capital of Ecuador – has been a unique and treasured place for generations of Ecuadorians. Throughout its history the city has hosted travellers, worshipers, scientists, warriors, architects, emperors and any number of great men. Each knew the value of the land and offered their unique contribution to the development of this metropolis strategically located on the equator. OLD TOWN

Quito boasts a host of historical attractions, reflected in the city’s victory at World Travel Awards 2013 when it was voted “South America’s Leading Destination”. At the hear t of the city is the Spanish colonial centre, designated a UNESCO World Heritage site as long ago as 1978. The area has recently undergone a renaissance, with the city government investing hundreds of millions of US dollars on improvements to infrastructure, attractions and amenities. The cobblestoned streets and pastel-colored mansions which hem the revitalised San Francisco Church now dazzle once again as they welcome guests from around the world. Other projects planned as par t of the 35th anniversary celebrations include recovering landmark buildings to house two new universities, the construction of the cultural complex and recreational Cumandá (in a former bus terminal), the opening of the Monastery of Carmen Alto Museum, the rehabilitation of the St. Augustine Sala Capitular and San Blas squares, Victoria Square and the Capitol Theatre.


These interventions are already underway, and add to a broad agenda that includes citizen par ticipation, academic and educational institutions and specific exhibits. Events such as the International Forum ‘Inhabiting Heritage’, and the ‘Conservation Asset: Quito-Krakow Exchange’ seminar, will join traditional festivals such as Summer Q, Liber ty Eve, and the Quito foundation festivities on the agenda. In early November, Ecuador will host the prestigious Adventure Racing World Championships, with Quito positioned as the race headquar ters where the world’s best adventure racing athletes will meet and prepare for the epic multi-disciplinary adventure race. Christmas & New Year will hold a host of activities that allow visitors and citizens to reflect on the heritage and diversity of Quito, as well as making the historic centre a meeting place for the reappropriation of public spaces. Close by, La Mariscal is considered the centre of enter tainment in Quito. Here the city offers visitors endless options for dining, shopping, dancing and anything else they might desire. A meeting point for local people, the cosmo-

politan atmosphere also takes in a huge array of cultural experiences, dance schools and craft shops. Latin Americans are renowned for their sense of fun, meaning festivities will extend well into the night! But it is not all par tying, with Quito also offering a developed cultural sector. In recent years the city has carried out various projects to offer residents and visitors a range cultural sites and oppor tunities for ar tistic expression. These projects have adapted heritage buildings to allow them to accommodate exhibitions, shows, contests, and all kinds of cultural events. Top attractions include the Cultural Center Benjamin Carrion, the Contemporary Ar t Center and the Cultural Center Tianguez. Quito will step up to host its inaugural World Travel Awards ceremony in the summer of 2014. The glittering red carpet event will take place at the historic Centro Cultural Itchimbia. Forming the centrepiece of Parque Itchimbia, the Centro Cultural Itchimbia is a magnificent glass-and-iron building, modelled after the city’s original Mercado Santa Clara. The centre hosts regular ar t exhibits and cultural events, as well as serving as a museum.


On the more sedate side, wider Quito is also home to a number of relaxing parks, which act as the lungs of the city. These are spaces where people meet to walk, play spor ts, fly kites and enjoy nature at its finest. Most famous is the Guangüiltagua Metropolitan Park, which is located almost 3,000 meters above sea level. Surrounded by trees and gigantic ar t installations, visitors can spot over 70 bird species in this natural haven of 557 hectares. Located just a few minutes from Guanguiltagua Street in the urban neighborhood of Batán Alto, the park is easily accessible to guests. Also popular with locals is Las Cuadras Park, located south of the city. Declared an ecological area of special interest because of its native trees and exotic plants, there is also a wide variety of wildlife.


Offering a significant boost to tourism in Ecuador, the Mariscal Antonio Jose d Sucre International Airpor t in Quito opened last year. Set to welcome five million passengers in its first year, the

San Francisco Church

The Cathedral Dome

Virgin of “El Panecillo”

Historical Center

airpor t offers a longer runway than its predecessor meaning planes no longer have to stop at Guayaquil to refuel on the way to European destinations. “In addition, the new airpor t is located 400 meters below the current terminal, which enables aircraft to take off from the new airpor t with the highest passenger and cargo capacity possible, on non-stop flights,” explains Freddy Egüez, general manager, Metropolitan Public Airpor t Services. Quito is also set to boost its business credentials with the

launch of one of the largest urban development projects in recent years: the Quito Convention & Events Centre Complex. The project will be created as a public/ private par tnership, and will occupy an 11 hectares site on the grounds of the old airpor t. With the construction of this new development, Quito aims to become one of the top ten destinations for conventions and trade fairs in Latin America and rank among the first 50 countries worldwide in the industry of events tourism, as per guidelines of its strategic tourism promotion plan.

MORE INFORMATION Head over to for more information or visit Ecuador at Hall 1.1.



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2 N D A N N UA L

WORLD SKI AWARDS GALA CEREMONY 21-23 November 2014 A-ROSA Kitzbühel, Austria

Dates for 2014 World Ski Awards announced World Ski Awards, the only global initiative to recognise, reward and celebrate excellence in the ski hospitality industry has announced the dates and venue for its 2014 event. //

The 2nd Annual World Ski Awards will take place over the weekend of November 21st – 23rd November at the A-ROSA Kitzbühel, overlooking the legendary Hahnenkamm. The announcement follows the phenomenal success of last year’s inaugural event which was attended by ski tourism VIP’s from across the world. Sion Rapson, Managing Director, World Ski Awards, said: “We made the decision to launch World Ski Awards in reaction to overwhelming demand from the ski industry for a programme that was fair and transparent; a programme with a mission to serve as the definitive benchmark of excellence, and to help to foster a new era of growth in ski tourism.” The reaction to 2013’s launch event was vindication of this vision. Hundreds of thousands of travel professionals and skiers across the globe voted for their favourite resorts, chalets and hotels, whilst the audience who gathered for the unveiling of the inaugural winners served as a “who’s who” in ski hospitality. As well as accolades for the best products from the world’s leading

ski tourism nations, awards for the “World’s Best Ski Resort”, “World’s Best Ski Hotel”, World’s Best Ski Chalet”, World’s Best Ski Boutique Hotel” and for “Outstanding Services to Ski Tourism” will be voted for over the course of the year. New to the 2014 programme will be awards for the World Best Resort Management Company, the World Best New Ski Hotel, the World Best New Ski Chalet and Spain will also enter the pantheon of the top 21 ski nations to be honoured. Gerhard Walter, Managing Director, Kitzbühel Tourism Board said: “Following the successful premiere of the World Ski Awards in 2013, the Kitzbühel Tourism Board is deeply honoured to accept the invitation to host the second World Ski Awards. Last year, playing host to the figureheads of the international tourism industry made all of us in Kitzbühel very proud and we cannot wait to welcome this prestigious and important event back to Kitzbühel in 2014. The home of skiing is once again the home of the World Ski Awards. Our slogan - “the legendary City of Sports in the Alps” - fits the World

Ski Awards perfectly and our rich heritage is one of the reasons why Kitzbühel is the perfect stage for hosting sporting events and also the place for making history. Kitzbühel knows only too well that a strong brand is supported by excellence, with the best example of this being the honour of being chosen to host the World Ski Awards for a second time.” The host hotel – A-ROSA Kitzbühel - General Manager Uwe Schramm said: “The entire team and I are enormously proud that the A-ROSA Kitzbühel has again been selected as venue for this glamorous event.

itself on the evening of November 22nd. Ski tourism figureheads and market leaders from North America, Europe, Asia, South America and Australasia will be in attendance as the 2014 World Ski Awards winners are unveiled. World Ski Awards is the sister organisation of World Travel Awards, which is heralded as “the Oscars of the travel industry”. MORE INFORMATION For more information visit www.

“We highly appreciate the huge positive impact and importance that these awards have in driving up standards within the ski industry. We can’t wait to welcome this important global audience to the legendary winter destination Kitzbühel - home to the World Ski Awards once again in 2014.” The 2014 World Ski Awards will be a three-day programme of unrivalled networking events, dinners, and exclusive ski experience activities. The highlight event will be the red carpet World Ski Awards Gala Ceremony



13-16 November 2014

Conrad Algarve, Quinta do Lago, Portugal


WTA to start 2014 in style at JW Marriott Marquis Dubai


World Travel Awards will kick start its 2014 Grand Tour in sumptuous style at the world’s tallest hotel, the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai on May 4th 2014. Since its full opening last year, the new landmark hotel has rapidly stamped its mark as one of the most desirable destinations in the Middle East for business and leisure, and was voted “World’s Leading New Hotel” at World Travel Awards 2013 Grand Final in Doha, Qatar. The most important decision-makers in the region’s travel sector will attend the glittering Gala Ceremony when they will celebrate and acknowledge their achievement over the past twelve months. They will be joined by a host of international media. The spectacular evening precedes the opening of Arabian Travel Market (May 5th-8th). The five-star property will serve as a fitting venue to host the inaugural 2014 event of the “Oscars of the


travel industry”. Soaring at 355 meters, the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai is just 26 metres shorter than New York City’s famed Empire State Building, and holds the Guinness World Record title as the “World’s Tallest Hotel”.

and increasingly important MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions) market by filling a long-identified gap in the region. Groups, meetings and conventions of up to 1,000 people can now meet, stay and dine under one roof.

It enjoys an elevated position above Dubai’s business district, on Sheikh Zayed Road and is spread across two iconic towers. The 72-story property is the first JW Marriott Marquis outside of North America and the 59th addition to the brand’s global luxury portfolio.

The hotel is the first in Dubai that is able to accommodate large groups and is playing a key role in attracting major conventions and events to the destination.

The spectacular hotel features exceptional event settings for celebrations of all kinds, an enticing array of relaxing recreational activities, and the sublime SARAY Spa and Health Club. It includes a spectrum of business facilities and 14 diverse dining options for the most discerning of travellers. The hotel, which is owned by Emirates Group, targets the lucrative

Along with cutting-edge business facilities, the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai features more than 7,500 square meters of indoor and outdoor event space, including two ballrooms, and a large selection of world-class dining and entertainment options. The hotel’s accoutrements include ten restaurants, including Izakaya, Tong Thai, Prime 68 La Farina and Rang Mahal by Atul Kochhar, the first Indian chef to be awarded a Michelin Star.

DEFINITELY DUBAI WTA returns to the bustling emirate of Dubai as the stage for the first event of its global Grand Tour. City of merchants, cultural crossroads, Dubai is a country where the dust of the desert is clearing to reveal the potential for one of the most significant international cities of the 21st century. Wedged between Europe and Asia, buttressed by Africa, Dubai’s encouraging tax regimes, state-of-the-art telecommunications and pro-business environment have produced a country that is building energetically on the advantages which location, centuries-old trading savvy and oil wealth have given it. Sunshine, shopping, seaside, sports and safety - five of the key ingredients that have earned Dubai a growing reputation as one of the world’s most attractive and rapidly developing leisure destinations. Both business travellers and tourists find that Dubai offers the highest standards of comfort and luxury. As befits a dynamic and prosperous business centre, Dubai’s ultramodern hotels offer every luxury. Yet the comforts of the 21st century co-exist with the emirate’s rich Arab-Islamic culture. An intriguing land that combines old-world souks and modern shopping malls, rolling sand dunes and championship grass golf courses, remote Bedouin villages and an array of five-star hotels, Dubai defies easy definition. The emirate also won the right to host Expo 2020 in a few years time, with billions of dollars in investment now expected ahead of the event. KEY FACTS For more information about World Travel Awards Middle East Gala Ceremony 2014 visit www. For more information about JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai visit or head over to Hall 22.A/103 here at ITB Berlin 2014.



WORLD TRAVEL AWARDS HEADS TO THE CRADLE OF WESTERN CIVILISATION WITH THE ANCIENT CITY OF ATHENS SET TO PLAY HOST TO THE EUROPE GALA CEREMONY 2014. World Travel Awards heads to the cradle of western civilisation with the ancient city of Athens set to play host to the Europe Gala Ceremony 2014. The red carpet evening, which takes place on August 2nd, represents the first time that the “Oscars of the travel industry” will have visited Greece in its 21-year history. The host venue is the incredible Divani Apollon Palace & Thalasso, a luxury beach resort situated in the exclusive area of Vouliagmeni, just 18km from the city centre. The stunning beachfront location combined with one of the most luxurious Thalassotherapy centres in Europe makes this a destination for well-being and relaxation. The sea views can be admired over the landscaped gardens from the two outdoor swimming pools, or the direct-access private beach where guests can relax under an umbrella or 96

try sailing, snorkelling and jet skiing. The reason why Divani Athens SPA and Thalasso Center is so unique is the sense of escape that it creates for its visitors, due to its amazing location on the beach of Vouliagmeni. Divani Apollon Palace & SPA is a member of the Leading Hotels of the World and boasts 336 rooms including 83 executive rooms and 34 suites. Each one of the rooms offers guests a chance to see the sea in all panoramic directions with a front row seat to the Saronic spectacle: exuberant sun rising, romantic sunsets and the never ending azure blue. The hotel is a magnificent venue for meetings, business conferences and special events. You can find more than 2,500 metres squared of available space. The hotel offers four restaurants each

with its own personality. Don’t miss breakfast at Anemos terrace, offering, apart from a great variety of servings, a panoramic view of the hotels swimming pools and gardens. For dinner you can return to the roots of Mediterranean cuisine. Mythos of the Sea Restaurant, just opposite from the main building, offers beautiful bay views to the Saronic Gulf and a definitely mind blowing sunset. Divani Apollon Palace & Thalasso offers an impressive variety of services and facilities in a great location and exemplifies luxurious hospitality. The hotel offers two outdoor swimming pools, including one with sea water, where you can spoil yourself under the Greek sun. WORLD-CLASS SPA FACILITIES The Divani Athens Spa & Thalasso Centre represents the soul of the

resort. The timeless Greek traditions of wellness and the balance of body and spirit are revived at the centre. Thalassotherapy is known as the use of marine environments beneficial effects under medical supervision for preventative and care purposes. The marine climate, seawater, seaweeds and other sea resources are used in our care treatments to harmoniously balance body and mind. On a privileged setting next to the sea, the centre offers revitalising Thalassotherapy programs combined with a selection of the best beauty care and fitness treatments available. Furthermore for the energy lovers the Spa offers a state-of-the-art fitness centre with the latest Technogym cardiovascular equipment. The centre has a total area of 3500 ​​ sq.m. and is the only thalassotherapy

centre in the greater Athens area. It has one of the largest and fully equipped pools that exist in Greece, 25 treatment cabins, sauna and steam room for men and women, and a modern gym with the latest type of Technogym equipment. Divani Athens Spa and Thalasso Centre offers an impressive variety of treatments that are tailored to your personal needs, ensuring an experience of the highest quality. The unique aesthetic integrity of the site and the high expertise and discretion therapists guarantee a combination of relaxation and wellness. EUROPE’S OLDEST CITY Athens is Europe’s oldest city and dates back 2,500 years. Over the past decade its ancient tourist sites have been given a new lease of life with the create of the Archaeological Promenade, a 2.5-mile long, pedestrian-only walkway, which skirts the foot of the Acropolis and links all the city’s major archaeological sites. This huge archaeological park has reconciled past and present, with the city’s cultural and social life once again taking place around the ancient monuments and surrounding neighbourhoods. But visitors don’t come here just for the ancient monuments. Contemporary Athens boasts one of the most happening nightlife scenes in Europe, from the urban-chic bars around grungy Monastiraki (at the foot of the Acropolis), to the sophisticated lounge-bars and fusion-food eateries of up-market Kolonaki. KEY FACTS For more information about World Travel Awards Europe Ceremony 2014 visit www. For more information about Athens and Greece go to www. or head over to Hall 2.2/101 here at ITB Berlin 2014; and for Divani Apollon Palace & Thalasso click on www.



San Francisco Church (image courtesy of Casa Gangotena Boutique Hotel)

Augusto Barrera, Mayor of Quito, says: “As Mayor of the City of Quito it is an honour to welcome World Travel Awards to the very first city to be declared a World Cultural Heritage Site by UNESCO over 35 years ago, not only for its incredible and priceless architecture, but also because it is home to a richly-evolving heritage.” He adds: “Quito has earned other major awards, including the award received in 2013 as ‘South America’s Leading Destination’ at World Travel Awards. This year we will be hosting this important event and it is a privilege for those who make this city nestled in the Andes, to bring this event to Ecuador for the first time.” Composed of an ancient mixture of peoples, cultures and traditions, Qui-


to has been a unique and treasured place for generations of Ecuadorians. The city was founded in the 16th century on the ruins of an Inca city and stands at an altitude of 2,850 metres. It boasts the best-preserved, least altered historic centre in Latin America. Throughout its history the city has attracted great people that appreciate the value of the land and offer their unique contribution to the development of this metropolis, strategically located on the equator. At the heart of the city is the Spanish colonial centre, designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1978. The area has recently undergone a renaissance, with the city government investing hundreds of millions of US dollars on improvements

to infrastructure, attractions and amenities. The cobblestoned streets and pastel-colored mansions which hem the revitalised San Francisco Church now dazzle once again as they welcome guests from around the world. The monasteries of San Francisco and Santo Domingo, and the Church and Jesuit College of La Compañía, with their rich interiors, are pure examples of the ‘Baroque school of Quito’, which is a fusion of Spanish, Italian, Moorish, Flemish and indigenous art. The WTA red-carpet gala ceremony will take place at the Centro Cultural Itchimbia, a magnificent glassand-iron building, which forms the centrepiece of Parque Itchimbia. The structure is modelled after the city’s

original Mercado Santa Clara. The centre hosts regular art exhibits and cultural events, as well as serving as a museum. Other projects include recovering landmark buildings to house two new universities, the construction of the cultural complex and recreational Cumandá (in a former bus terminal), the opening of the Monastery of Carmen Alto Museum, the rehabilitation of the St. Augustine Sala Capitular and San Blas Square, Victoria Square and the Capitol Theatre. Close by, La Mariscal is considered the centre of entertainment in Quito. Here the city offers visitors endless options for dining, shopping, dancing and anything else they might desire. A meeting point for local people, the cosmopolitan atmosphere also takes

in a huge array of cultural experiences, dance schools and craft shops. Quito is also home to a number of relaxing parks, which serve as the lungs of the city. These are spaces where people meet to walk, play sports, fly kites and enjoy nature at its finest. Most famous is the Guanguiltagua Metropolitan Park, which is located almost 3,000 meters above sea level. Surrounded by trees and gigantic art installations, visitors can spot over 70 bird species in this natural haven of 557 hectares. Located just a few minutes from Guanguiltagua Street in the urban neighborhood of Batán Alto, the park is easily accessible to guests. Also popular with locals is Las Cuadras Park, located south of the city. Declared an ecological area of special interest because of its native trees and exotic plants, there is also a wide variety of wildlife.

Otavalo Artisanal Market

Offering a significant boost to tourism in Ecuador, the Mariscal Antonio Jose de Sucre International Airport in Quito opened last year. Welcoming five million passengers in its first year, the airport offers a longer runway than its predecessor meaning planes no longer have to stop at Guayaquil to refuel on the way to European destinations.

Centro Cultural Itchimbia Cotopaxi Volcano

San Francisco Church

Quito is also set to boost its business credentials with the launch of one of the largest urban development projects in recent years: the Quito Convention & Events Centre Complex. The project will be created as a public/private partnership, and will occupy an 11 hectares site on the grounds of the old airport. With the construction of this new development, Quito aims to become one of the top ten destinations for conventions and trade fairs in Latin America and rank among the first 50 countries worldwide in the industry of events tourism, as per guidelines of its strategic tourism promotion plan.

Quito’s hummingbird

La Compañía Church Facade

KEY FACTS For more information about World Travel Awards South America Gala Ceremony 2014 visit www.worldtravelawards. com. For more on the host city head over to Hall 1.1/101 at ITB Berlin or visit


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BTN // ITB 2014 Day 2  

Day 2 issue of the Breaking Travel News ITB Berlin 2014 Special Edition

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