“A Globally Diverse Association”
IAHMP 18th Annual International Educational Conference & Trade Show
The IAHMP annual conference is the premier gathering place for multi-cultural event planning in the industry. This event attracts participants from the United States, Latin America and Europe and offers attendees a myriad of educational, networking and social opportunities.
Meeting/event planners • • • •
Learn to leverage your meeting’s economic power Network with top industry and association professionals Listen to top rated speakers providing orientation, motivation and perspective Gain one-on-one exposure to industry suppliers which makes destination selection an easier process • Be exposed to a variety of viewpoints from different cultures • Opportunity to be trained as a Certified Diversity Meeting Professional
Apply online to see if you qualify to be a “HOSTED” Meeting Planner with R/T Airfare and 3-nights hotel stay.
• • • • •
Reach the fastest-growing segment of the U. S. population – 50 million strong and growing! Network with top multi-cultural association professionals Exhibit your products and services Gain one-on-one exposure to highly qualified professionals with purchasing power Opportunity to be trained as a Certified Diversity Meeting Professional Visit www.IAHMP.org for registration and trade show information and fees.
Conference Sponsorship Opportunities
Maximize your marketing ROI and get your message in front of key buyers in the Hispanic and Multicultural meetings market. Participate on onsite events, website advertising, email sponsorship, onsite signage and much more! Visit www.IAHMP.org for a description of our sponsorship levels.
Thank You 2012 Conference Sponsors!
Each year, millions of people travel globally to attend meetings, conventions and special events. It is therefore a necessity for people within the travel and tourism industry to be culturally aware if they want to maintain relevance and stay competitive. Connecting with your customers is no longer a luxury it’s a necessity. When you understand customer’s needs and preferences you can more effectively support your company’s efforts to delight customers and win their loyalty – which translates into greater profits for your firm. IAHMP founded the Certified Diversity Meeting Professional designation to meet the needs of industry professionals who work and do business with people all over the world. Becoming culturally aware means understanding your customer based on a specific knowledge of a person’s country of origin, cultural nuances and among other traits such as gender, educational level, etc.
Certified Diversity Meeting Professional Designation
In today’s global market economy, meeting planners across the board are finding it challenging to create a meeting environment that supports and promotes the inclusion of diversity. As attendance to annual events diversifies, so does the role of the meeting planner. Gender, religious practices, language barriers and cultural awareness are all issues that must be identified to ensure that attendees get the maximum benefit of attending business meetings and educational programs at various conferences and special events. IAHMP supports the old axiom “Knowledge is Power” and wants to put in the hands of meeting professionals on both sides of the table the knowledge that will better prepare them for the future. Certification Program The International Association of Hispanic Meeting Professionals (IAHMP) has developed and implemented a Certification Program for its members and industry professionals to enhance their skills in the market place. In partnership with Academic and Industry Professionals, IAHMP has successfully introduced the Certified Diversity Meeting Professional (CDMP) program, which is the first program of its type in the Meetings & Hospitality industry.
Materials for the program include a Study Guide and the CDMP Testing Program. Upon completion of the CDMP individuals will be able to enhance their professional skills to work with diverse publics.
20 SUMMER 2013
CONTENTS COVER STORY 24 ....................................Texas Meeting Destinations
FEATURES 12 ..............................................Networking with CVBs 20 ....................................................Golf & Spa Resorts 33 ..................Hispanic Association Meeting News 42 ............................................................Hispanic Travel •Gulf Coast Destinations •Summer Travel Tips
05 ........................................................Publisher’s Letter 06 ..........Contributing Editor’s Comments/Credits 08 ............................................................Industry Briefs 18 ................................................................Techno Savvy 36 ....................................Meeting Planner Incentives 38 ................................................Meeting Planner Tips 39 ......................................................Calendar of Events 40 ................................................................Social Events On The Cover: Nina Vaca, CEO, Pinnacle Technical Resources and Chairman Emeritus, United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC) as part of the Visit Dallas “BIG” branding campaign. Photo courtesy of R2 Group.
4 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
ispanic Meetings & Travel is
Fortune 500. Pinnacle is now the fifth
the city of Dallas on the cover
of the Texas Meeting Destinations issue.
industry. As USHCC Chairman, Ms. Vaca
oversaw three of the association’s most
earlier this year, “BIG Things Happen
dance, fundraising and media coverage.
extremely proud to showcase
With a new marketing campaign launched
Here”, Dallas has been able to engage its
fastest growing firm in a $20 billion dollar successful conventions in terms of atten-
Currently Ms. Vaca is a Director with
residents to participate in the rebranding of
Kohl’s Corporation and a founding board
town 22 fiberglass letters, Bs and Gs that
is an honor to have her on the cover of His-
the city. Dallas strategically placed around
are 6 feet tall, as part of a social media
Local residents were encouraged to have
their picture taken standing between the
letters, becoming the "I" in "BIG." Photos
were uploaded to various social media
sites, including Twitter, Facebook and Pin-
terest, using the hashtag #DallasBIG, and
entered into a month long contest. Every
week a winner was randomly chosen
among all the photo entries. What a clever idea!
It is only fitting that this cover is graced by
member of Startup America Partnership. It panic Meetings & Travel.
As we go to press with our Texas issue I
can’t help but reflect on the pride and joy this state brings to all its citizens. That is
why it is especially hard to see what our
endured recent tragedies. That is why it is
month and a half. From the plant explosion
back to life after Hurricane Sandy. Soon
great state has gone through in the past in West, Texas to the tornadoes that devas-
tated parts of the Dallas/Fort Worth area and, closer to home, the loss of 4 Houston
firefighters as they heroically combated a five-alarm fire; Texas has had to endure a lot this year. But we are a state like no oth-
er and we lift each other up in time of
one of Dallas’ BIG entrepreneurs, Ms.
man Emeritus of the US Hispanic Cham-
We in this industry know too well the
company Pinnacle in 1996 as an informa-
destination’s tourism so let’s not forget
Nina Vaca who was recently named Chair-
ber of Commerce. Ms. Vaca founded the tion technology services provider to the
impact that a catastrophe can have on a
those parts of the country that have
so wonderful to witness New Jersey come the tourism and conventions will return to
these hardest hit areas but it is up to us to be a part of that resurgence. ¡Sigamos adelante!
María de la Luz González Publisher and Editor
In the Next Issue __________________________________________
FALL 2013 • Southwest Meeting Destinations
Hispanic Meetings & Travel dedicates this issue to Boston • West, Texas DFW • Oklahoma Houston Fire Department
• Convention Centers • Historical Hispanic Destinations • Hispanic Meeting Professionals Conference • Caribbean Travel __________________________________________
Want to write for Hispanic Meetings & Travel Magazine? We occasionally accept contributed articles and essays. Contact the managing editor with your pitch.
www.hispanicmeetingstravel.com | HM&T 5
Summertime is here!
CONTRIBUTING EDITOR’S COMMENT
Summertime, and the livin' is easy - Fish are jumpin' And the cotton is high…So hush little baby Don't you cry*…
YES summer is here. Can you believe it! All over the country families are on the road to visit friends and family members all around globe. Associations are busy finalizing plans for annual meetings and conventions. Every year thousands of people contribute millions of dollars to the hospitality industry. Where do they go and where do they stay? Perhaps you have not given it much thought but Hispanics are the largest travel contributor and economic engine in states like California, Texas and New Mexico. Below is information you should know on international travel to the USA.
According to California Travel and Tourism Commission: Mexico is the leading source of international travel to California, with 6.7 million visitors in 2008 who accounted for approximately $1.0 billion in spending. Air travel from Mexico alone accounts for more visitation than all but three other countries, with approximately 378,000 visitors to the state… staying an average of 7.2 nights and spending a total of $264 million. Source: The California Travel and Tourism Commission.
Also important to know is the economic impact of travel and meetings to the US economy. US Travel has a report you can purchase on The Economic Significance of Meetings to the U.S. Economy. The study reveals the U.S. meetings industry directly supports 1.7 million jobs, $263 billion in spending, and a $106 billion contribution to GDP, $60 billion in labor revenue, $14.3 billion in federal tax revenue and $11.3 billion in state and local tax revenue. To purchase the complete report visit the web site at www.ustravel.org If you are nostalgic this time of year like
6 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
PUBLISHER Gonzalez Global Media, LLC. EDITOR María de la Luz González firstname.lastname@example.org FOUNDER & CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Margaret Gonzalez email@example.com
me you may want to know the complete lyrics to Summertime shown below. Sing out loud and enjoy!
"Summertime" is an aria composed by
George Gershwin for the 1935 opera Porgy and Bess. The lyrics are by DuBose Heyward, the author of the novel Porgy on which the opera was based, although the song is also cocredited to Ira Gershwin.
Summertime And the livin' is easy Fish are jumpin' And the cotton is high
Your daddy's rich, And your mamma's good lookin' - So hush little baby Don't you cry One of these mornings You're going to rise up singing Then you'll spread your wings And you'll take to the sky
But till that morning There's a'nothing can harm you With daddy and mamma standing by
Summertime, And the livin' is easy Fish are jumpin' And the cotton is high
Your daddy's rich And your mamma's good lookin' So hush little baby Don't you cry
Margaret Gonzalez Founder & Contributing Editor Hispanic Meetings & Travel
DESIGN & PRODUCTION BAY AREA MEDIA SERVICES / SCENE MEDIA CREATIVE & PRODUCTION DIRECTOR - John Ennis www.bams.us / www.scenelive.net ADVERTISING STEVEN GONZALEZ firstname.lastname@example.org MARIA GONZALEZ email@example.com CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Austin CVB, Choice Hotels International, Inc., Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, Conservancy of Southwest Florida, Dallas CVB, Destination DC, Eventastic, Fairmont Acapulco Princess, Galveston Island CVB, Margaret Gonzalez, Maria Gonzalez, Steven Gonzalez, Grupo Vidanta, Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism, Hilton Americas-Houston, Hilton Arlington Hotel, HTH Worldwide, Hyatt Regency Dallas, Irving CVB, Jose Cuervo Tradicional, Kaplan Public Relations, Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas, Marriott Hotels, MGM Resorts International, National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, New Orleans Downtown Marriott at the Convention Center, Philadelphia CVB, Priceline.com, Proexport Colombia, Renaissance World Golf Village Resort and Convention Center, Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort, St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra & The Beaches VCB, Sunscape Sabor Cozumel, The Clorox Company, The GO Group LLC, The Latino Coalition, The Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club, The National Hispanic University, The Pearl, TourismReview.com, VISIT DENVER, Visit Norfolk, Visit Phoenix PHOTOGR APHY 2013 Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Choice Hotels International, Conservancy of Southwest Florida, Cowboys Stadium, Steve Crecelius and VISIT DENVER, Dallas CVB - Clay Coleman, Dallas CVB - Raul Santillan, Destination DC, DigPicPhoto, Fairmont Acapulco Princess, FloridasHistoricCoast.com and Stacey Sather, Galveston Island CVB, George W. Bush Presidential Center, Grupo Vidanta, Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism, IAHMP, Hilton Arlington Hotel, HTH Worldwide, Hyatt Regency Dallas, Irving CVB, Jose Cuervo Tradicional, JW Marriott Austin, Kaplan Public Relations, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Las Vegas CVA, Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas, Marriott Hotels, MGM Resorts International, Matt Pasant, New Orleans Downtown Marriott at the Convention Center, Philadelphia CVB, PRNewsFoto/The National Hispanic University, Proexport Colombia, R2 Group, Ron Ruhoff and VISIT DENVER, Cesar Russ Photography and Choose Chicago, Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort, St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra & The Beaches VCB, Texas Rangers, The Latino Coalition and Max Taylor, The Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club, The Pearl at Rosemary Beach, Visit Phoenix ADVERTISING SALES OFFICE Gonzalez Global Media 2600 South Shore Blvd., Suite 300 League City, Texas 77573 Telephone - 281-245-3330 Fax - 281-668-9199 W E B PA G E www.hispanicmeetingstravel.com WEB MASTER - Margil Villarreal Hispanic Meetings & Travel ISSN #1527-8387 is owned and published by the Gonzalez Global Media, LLC. at 2600 South Shore Blvd., Suite 300, League City, Texas 77573 C 1999-2013 All Rights Reserved. Hispanic Meetings & Travel cannot by held responsible for unsolicited material. The publisher does not assume any responsibility for any unsolicited material and will return only those accompanied by stamped self-addressed envelope. We reserve the right to edit all copy. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior permission of the publisher. Subscription rates: $30.00 per year within the USA, $52.50 in Canada, and $75.00 elsewhere. All subscriptions must be paid in U.S. currency. Single copies: U.S. $5.00, Canada $8.75, and $12.50 elsewhere. Produced in the USA.
Flip thru current and back issues of Hispanic Meetings & Travel at your computer, smart phone or tablet. (Including all Apple Mobile devices including Iphone & Ipads.*) *ISSUU.com is the web’s most popular destination for publications, a Time.com Top Web Site of the Year winner and works with all browsers & Apple IOS Devices.
Read HISPANIC MEETINGS & TRAVEL on your Android device with the ISSUU MOBILE APP Go to m.issuu.com on your mobile browser to install the free app or search “Issuu Mobile” in the Android Market.
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industrybriefs N E W * F R E S H * P R O G R E S S I V E
MGM Resorts Named Among Nation's Top Companies For Diversity By DiversityInc Receives Additional Recognition From Leading Hispanic Corporate Responsibility Association
GM Resorts International has earned the Number One ranking on DiversityInc's "Top 10 Regional Companies" list for diversity best practices, according to DiversityInc, one of the nation's leading sources on diversity management. Additionally, the company is one of the "Top 10 Companies for Latinos", says this benchmarking organization. 2013 marks the eighth consecutive year MGM Resorts has been recognized for its Diversity and Inclusion Initiative by DiversityInc, which ranks companies based on the results of an annual survey. "On the heels of the demographically revealing 2012 presidential election, it is clear that U.S. companies are increasingly conscious of the importance of diversity," said Luke Visconti, CEO of DiversityInc. "We are very encouraged to see more companies applying for this distinction and embracing diversity more deeply than ever. We also note a continued positive correlation between achievement in diversity and overall positive stock performance." DiversityInc's 300-field annual survey is divided into four equally weighted areas: CEO Commitment, Human Capital, Corporate and Organizational Communications, and Supplier Diversity. The survey's results are determined by statistical analysis and each company is vetted by DiversityInc staff. Of the 893 companies participating in this year's survey, MGM Resorts is the only 8 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
Nevada-based business and only gaming company to earn an award distinction. In a separate competition, MGM Resorts placed in the Top 10 list of businesses participating in the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility's Corporate Inclusion Index, which measures companies on four factors − Employment, Procurement, Philanthropy and Governance. It was MGM Resorts' first year participating, and MGM Resorts is the only Nevada-based business and the only gaming company to make the list. "As the gaming industry pioneer in Diversity and Inclusion, we are extremely proud to be honored this year by DiversityInc and the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility. These recognitions inspire us to pursue greater innovations as we continue to foster diversity and inclusion at all levels of our Company and our operations," said Phyllis A. James, Executive Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer of MGM Resorts International. "From the
top of our company on down, we have made diversity an essential part of our corporate culture, and consider it a key driver of our business competitiveness." The MGM Resorts Diversity and Inclusion Initiative was voluntarily launched in 2000 – the first in the gaming and hospitality industry – and is a critical pillar of the Company's enterprise-wide social responsibility platform that includes environmental sustainability and community engagement programs. Highlights from the Diversity and Inclusion Initiative include: • Approximately 64 percent of the Company's 61,000 employees are minorities. In the management ranks, about 43 percent of employees in the supervisory ranks are women, and 38 percent of employees in the supervisory ranks are minorities. • In December 2012, MGM Resorts debuted "Inspiring Our World", creative diversity training which takes the form of a 90-minute musical production; created by MGM and performed by a cast of 70
uilding on solid tourism numbers in 2012, Proexport Colombia predicts to receive close to 2 million tourists visiting Colombia in 2013. Proexport Colombia is the government entity in charge of promoting international tourism, foreign direct investment, and exports from the country. Colombia's tourism figures have experienced a steady growth over the last 10 years. From 2011 to 2012, tourism into the country grew 7% reaching 1.69 million tourists in 2012 with the United States, Canada, and Mexico among the 10 top markets for Colombia. Colombia has rapidly become the epicenter of attention in Latin America. Being
MGM RESPORTS: from Page 8
employees. To date, more than 44,000 MGM employees in Las Vegas and Detroit have experienced the production. â€˘ Since the creation of its Supplier and Construction Diversity programs in 2001, the Company has spent a cumulative total of more than $3 billion with minority-owned, women-owned, veteran-owned and disadvantaged enterprises, as well as businesses
Cartagena de Indias, Colombia (Courtesy of Proexport Colombia)
an undiscovered destination, the country offers unique and magical experiences to amaze international visitors. In Cartagena de Indias visitors can walk through colonial streets with over 500 years of history. In Bogota they can discover the most trendy and fashionable restaurants; the unique Gold Museum featuring over 3,500 pre-Colombian gold pieces; the coffee landscape can bring to life the coffee culture while visitors stay in a boutique hotel that is actually the traditional coffee hacienda as seen in the history books. Visitors can enjoy white sand beaches and crystal waters while visiting San Andres and Providencia or get enchanted in the streets of Medellin with its flowers and
always pleasant spring weather that makes everybody fall in love with the city. The country caters products for every taste, either luxury excursions, adventure and ecotourism tours, cruise destinations, or meetings and incentives trips: Colombia has it all. "We envisage that 2013 will be a record-breaking year for Colombia in terms of tourism numbers," said Maria Claudia Lacouture, President of Proexport Colombia. "Colombia's tourism industry is undergoing a stunning transformation focused on promoting a broader range of tourism products (e.g. cultural tourism and adventure travel) aimed at attracting a new breed of global consumer. More information can be found at
owned by disabled and lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) individuals. For additional information about the Company's Diversity Initiative, and to learn more about its efforts in corporate social responsibility, please visit: www.mgmresorts.com/csr. About MGM Resorts International MGM Resorts International (NYSE:MGM) is one of the world's lead-
ing global hospitality companies operat-
ing a peerless portfolio of destination
resort brands, including MGM Grand
Detroit, Bellagio, MGM Grand, Man-
dalay Bay and The Mirage. For more
information about MGM Resorts Interna-
tional, visit the Company's website at
www.hispanicmeetingstravel.com | HM&T 9
Colombia Poised to Break Tourism Records in 2013
industrybriefs Meet in Green Style at Fairmont Acapulco Princess Fairmont's Acapulco Princess Offers Stateof-the-Art Eco-Friendly Meeting Facilities
he iconic Fairmont Acapulco Princess is the ideal Acapulco venue for meeting planners who value personalized attention and eco-conscious state-of-the-art facilities. The world-class venue includes 27 innovative meeting rooms and an impressive amphitheater ideal for hosting any size event, from small seminars to large conventions and corporate retreats. The property proudly showcases the Diamante Exhibit Center, located at the Plaza las Fuentes, Acapulco's newest convention facility bordered by lush tropical gardens in a beachfront resort setting. The Diamante Exhibit Center features 20,000 sq. ft. of exhibition space and comfortably accommodates up to 4,300 guests. "Our commitment to exceed our meeting and convention clients' expectations while reducing the impact on natural resources is a key component of our oper-
10 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
ating philosophy," said Thomas Becker, Manager Director of The Fairmont Acapulco Princess and Pierre Marques properties. "Our hotels are considered benchmarks for excellence in Acapulco tourism and our reputation is widely based on innovation and sustainability." Drawing upon best practices established by Fairmont Hotels & Resorts' Green Partnership program, The Diamante Exhibit Center offers planners the opportunity to minimize their ecological footprint through the reduction of waste and conservation of valuable resources through a carbon management program, waste management initiative, energy and conservation program and ecological key partnerships and affiliations. Fairmont Hotel and Resorts' sustainable 'Eco-Meet' initiatives can be tailored to the individual needs of the each client and provides options such as local and organic culinary offerings, disposable-free food and beverage service and carbon neutral options. Set amongst lush tropical gardens and the majestic Pacific coastline, The Fairmont Acapulco Princess offers travelers five refreshing pools, a championship golf course, its signature Willow Stream Spa,
five-star restaurants, state-of-the art meeting facilities and the only oceanfront Convention Center in the destination. For additional information on the Fairmont Acapulco Princess visit www.fairmont.com/acapulco/. ABOUT FAIRMONT HOTELS & RESORTS Fairmont Hotels & Resorts is a celebrated collection of more than 60 luxury properties around the globe, including Shanghai's Fairmont Peace Hotel, The Plaza in New York, and Makkah Clock Royal Tower in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The luxury brand's distinctive hotels offer a sense of heritage and sophistication, warm, engaging service and culturally rich experiences. A community and environmental leader, Fairmont is also recognized internationally for its responsible tourism practices and award-winning Green Partnership program. Fairmont is owned by FRHI Holdings Limited, a leading global hotel company with over 100 hotels under the Fairmont, Raffles, and Swiss么tel brands. For more information or reservations, please call 1-800-441-1414 or visit www.fairmont.com.
he Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute (CHCI), a nonprofit and nonpartisan leadership development and educational services organization for emerging Hispanic leaders, applauds U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan for the appointment of CHCI alumna Alejandra Ceja as the new executive director of the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics. Ceja, a former CHCI Public Policy Fellow, will lead the administration's efforts to address disparities in education that impact the Latino community and provide policy solutions to President Obama and Secretary Duncan. "Alejandra is a trusted advisor and leader in the Hispanic community," Duncan said. "As director of this important initiative, Alejandra will continue her exceptional work of pursuing academic excellence and opportunities for Hispanics across the country." "CHCI commends Secretary Duncan for appointing Alejandra Ceja to White House Initiative," said Esther Aguilera, CHCI president and CEO. "Her appointment is a testament to CHCI's success in developing Latinos for leadership positions and illustrates how CHCI's educa-
tional programs are making an impact throughout the country." "I look forward to advancing the mission and goals of the Initiative and to helping Hispanics achieve their potential academically, professionally, civically and globally," Ceja said. "I want to thank CHCI for supporting my professional development throughout the years and look forward to working together on advancing the Latino college completion agenda for our country. Ceja came to Washington, D.C. in 1996 to accept CHCI's prestigious Public Policy Fellowship where she worked on Capitol Hill with Congresswoman Lucille RoybalAllard and at the National Council of La Raza. Her Washington career includes positions at the White House Office of Management and Budget where she helped develop the federal budget for the Department of Labor and the Corporation for National and Community Service and as senior budget and appropriations advisor at the House Education and Labor
Committee. Prior to her current appointment, she served as chief of staff for Under Secretary of Education Martha Kanter. Ceja is a member and former president of the CHCI Alumni Association. She is also a member of the National Urban Fellows, the National Hispana Leadership Institute and a graduate of the Presidential Management Fellowship program. Ceja is a native of Huntington Park, California though her family's roots trace back to Michoacan, Mexico. She received her MPA in Public Administration at Baruch College, City University of New York, and her B.A. in Political Science at Mount St. Mary's College in California. ABOUT CHCI Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute (CHCI), a nonprofit and nonpartisan 501(c) (3) organization, provides leadership development programs and educational services to students and young emerging leaders. The CHCI Board of Directors is comprised of Hispanic members of Congress, nonprofit, union, and corporate leaders. For more information call CHCI at (202) 543-1771, visit www.chci.org, or join on Facebook, Twitter (@chci), and LinkedIn.
AMResorts’ Opens Second Property in Cozumel, Mexico
unscape Sabor Cozumel officially opened its doors to guests following renovations to bring the Rafael Nadal-owned resort to brand standards. Sunscape Sabor Cozumel is AMResorts’ second property in the popular destination of Cozumel, Mexico. The 330-room Sunscape Sabor Cozumel offers its guests the benefits of Sunscape Resorts & Spas’ signature Unlimited-Fun® vacation concept which provides limitless access to a la carte dining and top-shelf spirits; a variety of daytime activities and live evening entertainment; fitness facilities and more. Additionally, Sunscape Sabor features the brand’s signature Explorer’s Club for
Kids, Core Zone for teen and Desires night club, along with diving and water sports centers, and four pools. Property updates included the addition of the brand’s signature Portofino, Da Mario, El Patio, Sea Side Grill, La Cava and Market Café restaurants, improvements to the Barracuda swim-up bar and wedding gazebo, and complete room remodels. All guest rooms and suites offer beautiful views and have a private balcony or terrace. Located just 15 minutes away from Downtown Cozumel and 20 minutes away
from Cozumel International Airport, Sunscape Sabor Cozumel is conveniently located near the second largest coral reef system in the world, the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System. Guests of the resort have close access to the Chankanaab National Marine Park, the Punta Sur National Ecological Park and can enjoy golf at the nearby Cozumel Country Club. For additional information, visit or call www.sunscaperesorts.com; 1-866-SUNSCAPE.
www.hispanicmeetingstravel.com | HM&T 11
CHCI Alumna Alejandra Ceja Appointed Director of White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics
Networking With CVBs
Florida’s Historic Coast St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra & The Beaches VCB Top Ten Reasons to Meet on Florida's Historic Coast
1. An Historic Place: This city has been here continuously for nearly 450 years and reflects a rich Spanish heritage. St. Augustine's past glories are a colorful backdrop for memorable experiences.
2. Serious Seaside Settings: The allure of pristine Atlantic Coast beaches beckons, even when work is on the agenda. And Ponte Vedra Beach allows that in style. Three AAA-rated resorts -- the Four-Diamond Sawgrass Golf Resort & Spa, a Marriott Resort and the FiveDiamond Ponte Vedra Inn & Club and the Four-Diamond Ponte Vedra Lodge & Club -- combine to offer 100,000 square feet of meeting space. On Vilano Beach, St. Augustine Beach and Crescent Beach, planners will find a variety of smaller properties ranging from upscale boutique hotels to more modest beach properties perfect for smaller meetings.
3. Legendary Links: Known as the world center of golf, the area's legendary courses and venues combine great opportunities for recreation with facilities for getting down to serious business. Just imagine -- meetings in the morning and challenging golf in the afternoon.
St. Augustine's skyline reflects centuries of architectural influences.
4. Accommodating Spaces: With more than 162,000 square feet of meeting space and 5,800 guest rooms, St. Augustine | Ponte Vedra Florida's Historic Coast has the right meeting and convention facilities to accommodate successful meetings with 10 to 1,500 or more attendees.
5. Easy Airport Access: St. Augustine | Ponte Vedra - Florida's Historic Coast is served by the Jacksonville International Airport (JIA), a 50-minute drive from downtown St. Augustine, 20 minutes from World Golf Village and 30 minutes from Ponte Vedra Beach.
6. Florida's Fabulous Climate: Gentle ocean breezes and a year- The famous 17th Island hole at TPC Sawgrass. round temperate climate characterize local weather. Cool ocean breezes makes Florida's Historic Coast one of the state's coolest places to be in the summer months.
7. Outdoor Teambuilding: The area has a multitude of beautiful beaches, captivating waterways and inspiring terrain perfect for outdoor gatherings and teambuilding programs.
8. Friendly and Proud People Attendees will come into contact with the friendliest and proudest people found anywhere. Many of the service personnel and clientele alike are members of families that have been here for generations and who possess a deep love for these lands.
9. Food for Thought - Dine-Around Simplified: The freshest seafood, locally grown produce and Southern cooking influence the flavors of the area. A wide selection of dining establishments abound providing dining choices that celebrate the culinary and cultural diversity that is unique to northeast Florida.
10. Professional Meeting and Event Services: One simple call to the St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra & The Beaches Visitors and Convention Bureau will connect planners with all the services needed to make their meeting here a success. For assistance planning your next event in Florida's Historic Coast, contact: St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra & The Beaches VCB • 29 Old Mission Avenue • St. Augustine, FL 32084 • Toll free: 1.800.418.7529 • www.floridashistoriccoast.com 12 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
Networking With CVBs
Partnering With Destination DC diverse, cosmopolitan world capital, DC invites visitors to explore its charming neighborhoods, sample its hip shops and restaurants and experience its vibrant nightlife. Fascinating, free attractions and festive events make DC a favorite meeting destination. World-famous museums, inspiring monuments and powerful moments await conferees. The city’s convention bureau, Destination DC helps with all of the details to make any DC meeting or incentive trip a powerful experience.
Services & Support After choosing DC for a meeting or event, Destination DC’s convention services team will step in to support with tailor-made services including:
• Offering insider knowledge of DC attractions, services, restaurants and other amenities for core convention activities, as well as spouse and family programs • Coordinating site visits • Scheduling venue and services contract appointments • Connecting you with local suppliers by issuing services leads to Destination DC members • Providing you with promotional materials including maps, guides, images and DVDs • Helping you identify transportation solutions that work for your hotel block • Working with DC businesses to alert them of your event and to arrange exclusive offers and discounts
Show Your Badge “Show Your Badge” is Washington DC’s newest program designed just for conferees! Destination DC wants conference goers to enjoy world-class restaurants, attractions and performing arts while in town. To participate, conferees simply show their conference/convention badge to any of the participating partners and they receive VIP treatment and exclusive discounts. Good for restaurants, attractions, shopping, performing arts and transportation.
For more information on hosting an event in Washington DC, call Destination DC at 202-789-7000 or visit www.washington.org.
Networking With CVBs
DISCOVER PHL: Philadelphia CVB Launches Websites To Drive Growth Of Conventions And International Travel
he Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB) has launched the destination's official convention and international visitor website, www.discoverPHL.com. The new website, which brings the vibrancy of Philadelphia to life through striking full-screen photography, extensive content and fresh branding, is designed to meet the demands of key Philadelphia travel audiences – international visitors, convention attendees and meeting planners.
The PHLCVB also launched www.discoverPHL.cn, a fully translated Chinese website hosted in China – a first for any U.S. travel destination, a robust mobile site, fully translated websites in four languages (French, German,
Spanish and Portuguese) and a mobile application on the iOS platform.
"We are always excited and eager to
tell Philadelphia's story to the world and discoverPHL.com does just that," says
Philadelphia Mayor Michael A. Nutter.
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Visit Phoenix launches 2013 Travel Guide App for iPad Digital Apps offer a great way to network with CVBs
sers of the iPad now have the Official Travel Guide to Greater Phoenix at their fingertips. Available as a free download in Apple’s App Store, the Visit Phoenix application takes users on a virtual journey through America’s sunniest metropolis using photos, videos and helpful links. The app contains insider content about things to do and places to dine in Greater Phoenix, and provides first-time visitors with overviews of the metro area’s mostvisited communities: Scottsdale, Tempe, Glendale, Mesa, Cave Creek/Carefree, Chandler and Queen Creek. The Visit Phoenix app includes an article on Greater Phoenix chefs who have achieved TV fame, as well as a Q&A with 14 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
Phoenix resident (and NASCAR star) Danica Patrick. The app also features an events calendar, a weather chart and tips on getting around town. “As people use an iPad to research travel, we want them to have a convenient, simple way to be inspired about Greater Phoenix,” said Melissa Gogel, Vice President of Marketing, Tourism and Communications for Visit Phoenix. “Like the best travel apps, this one is super visual and user friendly.” The free Visit Phoenix app can be found in the Apple App Store by searching “Phoenix Official Travel Guide 2013.” For more information visit www.visitphoenix.com or call 877-CALLPHX.
Discover PHL: From Page 14
"Philadelphia is ranked 12th in terms of international visitation to the U.S. and the launch of these new online tools is just one of the things we're doing to attract even more international visitors to our modern renaissance city."
"We have taken every measure to ensure that our website and supporting products are robust and accessible to all our audiences," says PHLCVB president and CEO Jack Ferguson. "Whether serving meeting planners, or welcoming convention attendees and international visitors, our websites will serve as a starting point for inspiring people to discover Philadelphia."
Some of the site's new features:
• Meeting and Convention Resources. New tools for meeting planners preparing events at the Pennsylvania Convention Center and other venues.
• Booking Engine. New hotel booking engine powered by Booking.com. The booking engine was chosen because of its global reach and availability to consumers in 41 languages and currencies.
• Member-generated Events and Deals – PHLCVB members can now add searchable events and deals, increasing their exposure and driving traffic.
• Maps and Itineraries. Plot an itinerary, search for hotels by categories, view restaurants in particular neighborhoods and more, via a new interactive map.
• Favorites. Create an account and map Favorites – restaurants, attractions, hotels etc., which can be saved and accessed at a later date, including from a mobile device. Discover what the Philadelphia CVB can do for your association at www.discoverphl.com
Networking With CVBs
Denver – Golden City of the Rocky Mountain West
ocated at the base of the snowcapped Rocky Mountains, Denver is a young, active city, blessed with great natural beauty and 300 days of annual sunshine. The more than two million residents of the metro area are ranked as some of the thinnest and healthiest in America, with a great appreciation of the outdoors. Denver has the nation’s largest park system, more than a 1,000 km of paved bike trails, and an extensive bike sharing program with 500 bikes available for sharing at 50 locations between March and November. Founded as a gold mining camp in 1858, Denver has a colorful history which comes to life at a variety of museums and historic sites examining the exciting days of the Old West. The city is served by Denver International Airport, the fifth busiest in the U.S. and tenth busiest in the world with direct flights to 160 worldwide cities including London, Frankfurt, Munich, Mexico City, Reykjavik and Toronto. Convenient shuttle service makes it easy to get to downtown Denver, and a new rail connection between the airport and downtown will open in 2015. Denver is also a gateway to the great national parks of the western U.S.A., including Rocky MounDancers and musicians perform at the tain National Park, Mexican Rodeo at the National WestBlack Canyon of ern Stock Show. the Gunnison, Courtesy Steve Crecelius and VISIT DENVER. Mesa Verde and Great Sand Dunes in Colorado, Yellowstone in Wyoming, and Arches in Utah. Accommodations: More than 1700 new hotel rooms are planned or under construction in The Mile High City, including a new 500-room Westin at Denver International Airport and a 16 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
City Park with downtown Denver skyline and the Colorado Rocky Mountains. Courtesy Ron Ruhoff and VISIT DENVER.
The Colorado Convention Center is conveniently serviced by the Denver area light rail. Courtesy Steve Crecelius and VISIT DENVER.
230-room Marriott Renaissance in one of downtown Denver’s most historic and beautiful buildings, the Colorado National Bank Building. Denver currently has 8,500 hotel rooms downtown within walking distance of the Colorado Convention Center and 43,000 rooms metro-wide. About VISIT DENVER, The Convention & Visitors Bureau: Celebrating more than 100 years of promoting the Mile High City, VISIT DENVER is a nonprofit trade association that contracts with the City of Denver to market Denver as a convention and leisure destination. Learn more about Denver on the VISIT DENVER website www.denver.org, on Twitter @iknowdenver and the VISIT DENVER Facebook page, or by phone at 800 2 DENVER.
Networking With CVBs
VisitNorfolk Offers Groups Unique Meeting Incentives eeting planners and groups are always searching for unique opportunities to enhance their meetings and conventions. VisitNorfolk offers two such opportunities for groups seeking savings and adventure.
Sail Into Savings - Book a meeting in Norfolk and receive a credit to your master account.
With the current state of the economy continuing to impact the bottom line of many meeting budgets, planners are seeking destinations that are affordable and accessible without cutting back on amenities.
Recognizing these concerns, VisitNorfolk is partnering with meeting professionals to significantly reduce costs and to provide them with one more reason to bring their meeting to Norfolk, Virginia. Contact the VisitNorfolk sales department and ask about "Sail into Savings" for more information at 800-368-3097. Voluntourism – Providing groups the opportunity to blend purpose with passion.
VisitNorfolk recognizes that many conference attendees want
to give back to the community in which they are visiting. In response to this need, VisitNorfolk has partnered with select local attractions as well as VOLUNTEER Hampton Roads to provide visitors with the opportunity to include volunteer service into their overall itinerary. Local attractions offering voluntourism opportunities include: • Norfolk Botanical Garden, visit www.norfolkbotanicalgarden.org or call 757-441-5830
• Virginia Zoological Park, call 757-441-2374 or visit www.virginiazoo.org • Hermitage Museum & Gardens, call 757-423-2052 or visit www.thehermitagemuseum.org •Virginia Arts Festival, visit www.virginiaartsfest.com or call 757-282-2800 VisitNorfolk looks forward to improving your experience in Norfolk through Voluntourism. Visit online for more information: www.visitnorfolktoday.com.
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Mobile Travel Application
Imagining the Future of Meetings
Marriott Hotels Introduces Transformational App Making For More Dynamic Meetings
nspired by the power of technology and ways to transform meetings for the people attending, Marriott Hotels, the signature brand of Marriott International, Inc. is introducing Red Coat Direct. With this first of its kind app, meeting organizers can now adjust and edit their meeting requests and preferences with a touch of a button and without ever leaving the meeting room. Red Coat Direct is the first branded hotel app to grant any meeting wish (within reason) from room temperature adjustments, to coffee refills or having lunch served earlier with an additional vegetarian dish. Rolling out at 350 Marriott Hotel properties in the US beginning in May, the Red Coat Direct app will be expanded to the brand's entire global portfolio of 500 hotels by the end of 2014.
"The way people work is more mobile and global, but until now, organizing meetings has been stuck in the past. We are rethinking all aspects of meetings from the physical space to the experience for both attendees and planners, and looking for ways to enable and inspire people to do their best work," said Peggy Roe, vice president, global operations services for Marriott Hotels. "Red Coat Direct's technology allows planners to continually adjust requests without missing a minute of their meeting or keeping other professionals waiting." The app is personalized to each organizer's specific meeting. Requests can be made up to three days before the meeting and then throughout the meeting. Once the request is made, it is routed to the 18 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
event manager and the department that can fulfill the request. The app is available for all internet-enabled devices including iPhone, iPad, Android phones, Kindle Fire and laptops and will be available in 19 languages by 2014's global roll-out. Marriott Hotels has been "re-imagining" the guest experience, transforming lobbies and public spaces by designing them for the next generation of travelers who blend work and play, demand style and substance, and require technology. As the industry leader in hosting meetings, Marriott is introducing new concepts designed for the new mobile worker.
Workspace On Demand powered by Liquidspace, an application to book meetings on demand, is further differentiating the customer experience at Marriott Hotels by allowing guests to book both free and paid spaces as easily as they book a guest room. Workspring at Marriott at the Redmond Marriott Town Center, the industry's first purpose-built suite of integrated spaces and common areas designed for small meetings, takes a holistic approach, bringing together seamlessly integrated service, technology and contemporary design. It was created in partnership with Steelcase to support collaborative work, inspiring creativity and innovation.
ABOUT MARRIOTT HOTELS Marriott Hotels continues to inspire and provide a balanced life on the road for discerning and high-achieving business
and leisure travelers, offering warm, professional service; sophisticated yet functional guest room design; lobby spaces that facilitate working, dining and socializing; restaurants and bars serving international cuisine prepared simply and from the freshest ingredients; meeting and event spaces and services that are gold standard; and expansive, 24hour fitness facilities. All Marriott Hotels participate in the award winning Marriott Rewards guest loyalty program that allows members to earn hotel points or airline miles for every dollar spent during stays. For more information, visit www.MarriottHotels.com.
TH Worldwide, a global health services and technology company, reminds world travelers to account for personal health and safety when planning a trip abroad this summer. "HTH Worldwide created mPassport to help people gain access to healthcare information and services all over the world. With web and mobile options, people have convenient access to the tools necessary to stay in control of their agenda," said Dave Weber, Managing Director for HTH Worldwide.
mPassport was recently recommended by the Safety Chick on TODAY with Kathie Lee and Hoda. It is available through a subscription at mPassport.com and as a downloadable app through the App Store and Google play. mPassport can help the more than nineteen million Americans traveling abroad this summer find reliable medical care from trusted doctors when far from home.
Over 100,000 business and leisure travelers, students and expats, have traveled the world with this service and have
enjoyed easy access to quickly and conveniently connect to local quality care in any situation: • Find a Provider - Locate the right doctor, dentist, mental health professional, hospital or clinic. • Request an Appointment - HTH will schedule a convenient time for you to meet with an English-speaking provider. • Know Your Medications - Brand names are different around the world; find the local equivalent and availability of your prescription, then locate a pharmacy. • Translate Medical Terms and Phras-
es - You can even play an audio clip for others to hear.
ABOUT HTH WORLDWIDE HTH Worldwide is a global leader that provides access to quality healthcare information and services all around the globe. HTH's mission is to help people anywhere and anytime understand, navigate and access the best available preventive, routine and complex health care services. HTH Worldwide will remain an industry leader in the design, development and distribution of mobile and online global resources across a variety of channels to accomplish its mission. For further information, visit www.hthworldwide.com.
New App Lets Travelers Book Airport Shuttles
he GO Group, LLC has launched an updated app that allows travelers to book a GO airport shuttle from their iPhones. The new version stores users' personal information, which speeds up the booking process. To make a reservation, iPhone users simply access the app and enter their flight, arrival and/or destination information. The app will automatically access the user's previously entered personal information, and allow them to easily make a reservation to and from any of the more than 50 airports served by GO Airport Shuttle. The app can be downloaded at the Apple app store and by searching for the phrase "go shuttle." "Mobile devices increasingly becoming the booking method of choice for travelers, so this app allows one-stop shopping for all travel needs, allowing anyone to book ground transportation quickly from any location," says John McCarthy, president of The
GO Group, which is comprised of 43 ground transportation companies, serving 52 airports in the United States, Canada and Europe. The mobile application was developed by The Hudson Group, a Lawrence, Massachusetts reservation systems technology company. The app should be available for other mobile devices later this year. Non iPhone users can book ground transportation to and from both departure and destination airports through GO's Web site, www.goairportshuttle.com or toll free at 1-877-544-4646. The GO Group, LLC is a one-stop source for door-to-door airport shuttle services. Its members transport some 13 million passengers to and from airports in the United States, Mexico, Canada and Europe annually. www.hispanicmeetingstravel.com | HM&T 19
Experts Recommend Must Have Healthcare App for Overseas Travel
GOLF & SPA RESORTS
A look at Renaissance World
enaissance World Golf Village Resort and Convention center is located 10 miles northwest of the historic beaches of St. Augustine, Florida and 20 minutes south of Jacksonville. A golfer’s paradise, this luxurious resort is set in the heart of World Golf Village, surrounded by two 18-hole championship courses designed by legends of the game.
This 301-room resort sits on 6,300 beautifully landscaped acres, next to the one-and-only World Golf Hall of Fame, the Walk of Champions, PGA TOUR Golf Academy, PGA TOUR Shop retail center, and such restaurants as the golf-themed Murray Bros. Caddyshack.
RESORT ACTIVITIES Along with 2 amazing golf courses including King & Bear, the only golf course ever designed by Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus, the Renaissance World Gold Village Resort offers an array of activities. The front desk staff can help any guests find out more about the following activities: • 18-hole Putting Green • Island Challenge Golf Hole - an island green reminiscent of the famed 17th hole of the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra • PGA TOUR Golf Academy - offering a full schedule of private lessons and two-to-five day golf clinics • 24-hour Health Club & Sauna • Swimming Pool & Hot Tub • Fly Fishing • Walking & Jogging Trails • IMAX® Theater • Village Shops & Restaurants • Shopping & Sightseeing in beautiful St. Augustine • Shopping at more than 180 Outlets (within 5 miles) • Virtual Golf Simulator • Deep Sea / Charter Fishing • Parasailing
MEETINGS Renaissance World Golf Village Resort and Convention Center is home to the largest combination hotel and conference center 20 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
between Orlando and Atlanta. The Renaissance Resort offers a total of 86,000 square feet of meeting and event space including distinctive venues at the World Golf Village and World Golf Hall Of Fame. Groups enjoy the utmost attention to detail, impeccable menus and banquet & catering, wireless Internet access, and customized golf tournaments – among many privileges. Visit www.worldgolfrenaissance.com for more information or call 888-740-7020 to make a reservation.
GOLF & SPA RESORTS
SANDESTIN GOLF AND BEACH RESORT
#1 Rated Destination Resort On Florida's Emerald Coast andestin Golf and Beach Resort, a 2,400-acre premier destination resort in Northwest Florida offers one of the best combinations of quality and variety among golf resorts in the Southeast. Sandestin is located on more than seven miles of beach and bayfront property between Pensacola and Panama City, just eight miles east of Destin. Sandestin features 1,300 Destin vacation rentals, condominiums, villas, town homes and hotel style accommodations. The resort also features The Village of Baytowne Wharf, a pedestrian village with shopping, dining and nightlife.
Championship Golf Courses: The resort features 72 holes of golf on four championship courses, including Raven Golf Club, Burnt Pine Golf Club, Baytowne Golf Club and The Links Course. Designed by three worldrenowned golf course architects, each distinctive course makes use of the surrounding landscape, from wetlands to marshes and beach to bay to offer golfers of all skill levels different challenges and experiences. Spa Sandestin: Spa Sandestin invites guests to experience a special spa experience with outstanding service, warmth and energy. Beautifying and relaxing at the beach has never been easier, according to Spa Director Louise Lara. Spa Sandestin
offers an outstanding and convenient variety of services and therapeutic body treatments. "Our goal is to offer our guests and clients the best services available from head to toe," states Ms. Lara. With an impressive roster of more than 50 offerings that range from a simple manicure to full pampering packages, Spa Sandestin allows men and women to customize their return to wellness -- body, mind and spirit, one treatment at a time.
Meeting Facilities: With the opening of the Baytowne Conference Center, Sandestin is able to offer groups of up to 1,600 more than 65,000 square feet of flexible meeting space. This includes the Magnolia Ballroom â€“ the largest ballroom in Northwest Florida â€“ located within the Conference Center. The resort's award-winning meeting facilities also include the 12,600 square-foot Linkside Center Exhibit Hall; 24 breakout rooms plus two ballrooms and four boardrooms; 3,000 square feet of flexible meeting space on the Gulf; a Grand Lawn (at the Baytowne Conference Center) for outdoor functions; two business centers; and an oversized pool deck ideal for casual outdoor receptions. For more information about Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort or to reserve your Destin, Florida spa getaway package, call (800) 622-1038 or visit www.sandestin.com.
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GOLF & SPA RESORTS
Introducing Spatium, Mexico's Top New Luxury Spa Opening at Grand Luxxe Resort in Nuevo Vallarta
he Grand Luxxe luxury resort announced in May the opening of what is destined to become Mexico's top luxury spa. The new Spatium is in Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico and is exclusively for Grand Luxxe resort members.
The opulent Spatium pampers guests within 25 service cabins and 6 outside treatment rooms, each under a palapa roof and surrounded by the spectacular landscaped environment of this five-star exclusive resort. Each outside treatment room features a different theme based on various foreign countries and featuring spa services and techniques common to that country, including treatments from Mexico, the Mediterranean, India, Italy, other parts of Europe and Thailand. Spatium brings the world to their clients in Mexico's finest location.
Spatium uses the finest quality products, including the full Spatium line of organic products for body treatments; Natura Bisse, a line of Spanish facial products; and Germaine Capuccini, another line of facial products from Spain.
"We are proud to be able to offer our valuable guests the lavish services provided by our new Spatium luxury spa," said Eric Dubaele, Director of Hotel Operations for Grupo Vidanta. "This new magnificent spa facility will prove to be an added benefit to the exceptional luxury resort experience that has made Grand Luxxe famous worldwide. We are confident that Spatium will become a favorite part of our Grand Luxxe community." ABOUT GRAND LUxxE A Grupo Vidanta property, Grand Luxxe luxury resorts feature stunning architecture and sleek interior finishes, glamorous shimmering pools and never-ending beaches. Grand Luxxe resorts give you the keys to endless pleasures â€“Nicklaus-designed golf course, the Brio Spa and Fitness Center, fine and casual dining on the resort property, unlimited pool and beach access and nightclubs, lounges and bars. Accommodation options range from uber-luxurious villas to over-sized suites, each featuring marble floors and teak terraces with a private plunge pool. In-room luxuries include plush beds, Wi-Fi, floor-to-ceiling windows, expansive views, soaking tubs, lush bathrobes, slippers and fabulous room service 24/7. Guests have access to the 24hour Grand Luxxe Concierge to help plan activities, as well as access to private chefs and a private butler service. A family-friendly resort, Grand Luxxe offers an exciting Kids Club and babysitting services. Grand Luxxe has locations in Nuevo Vallarta and Riviera Maya, Mexico. For more information, visit www.grandluxxe.com.
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Texas Meeting Destinations
DALLAS, TExAS Where BIG Meetings Take Place
s the Southwestâ€™s leading business and financial center, Dallas lays claim to being one of the top convention cities in the country. The city offers meeting planners an unparalleled array of amenities; 70,000 hotel rooms, flexible meeting space, warm climate, service-oriented staff, a central location with two major airports offering more domestic nonstop flights than any other US city which makes it easily accessible from all major U.S. cities as well as Mexico, Latin America and Canada.
Dallas improved on its status as a desirable meetings and conventions destination in 2011 with the opening of the muchâ€“anticipated Omni Dallas Hotel. The Omni added 1,001 rooms and 110,000 square feet of event space on site as well as 24 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
convenient sky bridge access to the Dallas Convention Center. A signature restaurant as well as retail and high-end spa, Mokara, occupy the first few levels of the 23-story hotel. With the opening of the Omni, the city ushers in a new era for Dallas meetings. Another significant reason for meeting in Dallas is the high concentration of Hispanic/Latino associations based in the Dallas Fort Worth area, including the National Society of Hispanic MBAs and SER-Jobs for Progress National, Inc. In 2012 the US Hispano Chamber of Commerce opened an auxiliary office in the same office space as the Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau in order to have a more centralized presence in the country. Apart from the presence of national associations, Dallas is home to many regional chapters such as the Latino Peace Officers Association, Hispanic Bar Association, Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting to name a few. This potential community outreach can have a positive impact on any meeting or convention. For Hispanic associations a main criterion for choosing a meeting destination is the Hispanic demographic of a city and Dallas ranks a top of that list. Here are some more reasons why meetings in Dallas are BIG:
The Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center: Designed by HKS, Inc. and constructed by Lee Lewis in collaboration with the City of Dallas, the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center (KBHCC) offers more than 1 million square feet of exhibit space and is home to the world’s largest column-free exhibit hall – 203,000 square feet. Apart from its central location in the heart of downtown Dallas, the KBHCC also offers more than 100 meeting rooms, a 1,750-seat theater, a 9,800-seat arena and two ballrooms. The KBHCC has been recognized as "The Best-Run Convention Center in America," and was the first convention center in the world to offer Wireless Internet Services for exhibitors and meeting professionals. More information can be found at Dallasconventioncenter.com.
Large Meetings: Apart from the Dallas Convention Center, the city of Dallas offers planners many other options for their meeting, no matter the size. For large meetings, the American Airlines Center, home to the NHL’s Dallas Stars and NBA’s Dallas Mavericks, is an attractive option, with its unparalleled experience in live entertainment, proximity to downtown and award-wining catering services.
DALLAS FUN FACTS
The frozen margarita machine was invented in Dallas.
The integrated circuit computer chip (which became the microchip) was invented in Dallas in 1958. With the roof enclosed, the entire Statue of Liberty could fit into the Cowboys Stadium. The Trinity River Corridor Project, when completed, will be more than 10 times the size of New York's Central Park. The first convenience store, 7-eleven, got its start in Dallas and the corporation is headquartered there today.
Smaller Events and The Dallas area is the largest metropoliMeetings: The city tan area in the nation not on a navigable of Dallas offers body of water. many conference and event centers The Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex is across the area with exceptional service home to 23 of the richest Americans. and convenient location. Private clubs and arts venues open up a world of exciting and unique options for events from the elegant to the down-home.
The Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center
Historical Options: For a historic option, Fair Park, a National Historic Landmark is Dallas’ largest cultural and entertainment destination. Home to the annual State Fair of Texas, the largest of its kind in the country, Fair Park is also one of the world’s largest collections of intact art-deco architecture. The 277-acre complex offers planners more than a dozen facility options as well as convenient access from downtown via Dallas Area Rapid Transit’s (DART) Green Line.
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Texas Meeting Destinations
Bluebonnets cover the 15-acre Native Texas Park at the Bush Center.
Courtesy of the George W. Bush Presidential Center
2013 Dallas Development Highlights The George W. Bush Presidential Center: The Bush Center which opened in May 2013 was constructed on a prominent 24–acre site on the campus of Southern Methodist University. The 226,500-square-foot building features the George W. Bush Presidential Library, including the archives and museum, as well as the George W. Bush Institute. Set within a native Texas landscape, the grounds at the Bush Center provides visitors a 15-acre park and the building itself incorporates green materials and energy-efficient technologies. The vibrant collaboration between the Bush Center and SMU will serve as a resource for Dallas, the region and the nation.
Trinity Groves: Trinity Groves is bringing the nation’s first restaurant concept incubator to Dallas, creating a new restaurant, retail, artist and entertainment destination right at the foot of Dallas’ new landmark Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge designed by world-renowned architect, engineer and sculptor Santiago Calatrava. A short drive from the Dallas Convention Center, Trinity Groves, with its Shepard Fairey murals and Juan Luis Gonzales sculptures, revitalized buildings and twinkle-lit trees, will be an entertainment destination for Dallas residents and visitors with in-demand views of the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge. The first restaurants and retailers came online in 2012 with more expected throughout 2013.
The Joule, Dallas:Downtown Dallas will receive a significant upgrade with the property-wide transformation of The Joule. The $78 million renovation and expansion will include 29 new guestrooms including suites and multi-story penthouses, over 14,000 sq. feet of meeting and event space, a cocktail lounge, an 8,000 square foot subterranean spa by ESPA, CBD Provisions, and an urban-rustic American brasserie specializing in comfort foods with sustainably raised ingredients. The hotel will remain open during expansion which is scheduled for completion by summer 2013. Hyatt Regency Dallas:Hyatt Regency Dallas has completed a $50-million makeover and upgrade of its 1,120 guest rooms, bathrooms and corridors, less than a year after construction 26 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
The silhouettes of the Hyatt Regency Dallas and its adjoining landmark, 50-story Reunion Tower, have given the Dallas skyline worldwide recognition.
began and just in time to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the hotel. The hotel features 160,000 square feet of public function space including three ballrooms, two exhibit halls, 56 meeting rooms, and 42 hospitality suites. Seeking to capture the identity Room with a view – the newly and personality of "new renovated Hyatt Regency Dallas. Dallas," while aligning with the hotel's timeless exterior, the team of architects took an artistic and interpretive approach to creating the new sleek, sculptural guest-room design. For more information on holding your next meeting or convention in Dallas contact: Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau • 325 North St. Paul Street, Suite 700 • Dallas, TX 75201 P: 214.571.1000 • VisitDallas.com.
Texas Meeting Destinations
AUSTIN IS A BUZZ WITH NEW HOTELS
here’s something about Texas’ capital city… a friendly vibe, a creative culture, an active community and just a touch of Texas bravado. As the city’s popularity as a travel destination grows, so does the demand for entertainment, new attractions and distinct accommodations. Here’s what’s new in Austin.
JW Marriott Austin (opening early 2015) – This 1,012-room convention-style hotel is under construction on Congress Avenue between 2nd and 3rd Streets. Just two blocks from the Austin Convention Center, the hotel will feature 112,000 square feet of flexible meeting, banquet and event space. It will bump the downtown room count to more than 7000. www.jwmarriottaustin.com
Hyatt Place Downtown – This upscale 296-room, 17-story hotel offers many technological amenities for business guests. Located in the heart of downtown, the hotel is steps away from the Austin Convention Center and multiple entertainment districts. www.hyatt.com
Fairmont Austin (opening 2015) – The Manchester Texas Financial Group announced plans to open a $350 million “uniquely Austin” convention-style hotel in 2015. The hotel will feature 1,025-rooms adjacent to the Austin Convention Center along Waller Creek. It will consist of 100,000 square feet of meeting space, premier restaurants, and a signature sky bar lounge restaurant on the 34th floor.
Heywood Hotel – Austin's newest boutique hotel is located in the middle of a vibrant East Austin neighborhood surrounded by local restaurants, lounges, and one-of-a-kind shops. Its seven rooms offer a custom experience. www.heywoodhotel.com
Lone Star Court (opening Fall 2013) – A new upscale, retroinspired, motor court concept is coming to Austin. Lone Star Court, an authentic Americana roadside hotel by Valencia group will open 28 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
in Fall 2013 in the Domain. Nostalgia will meet modern with an aesthetic that is authentically Austin and Texas Hill Country. Lone Star Court will have 123 retro-inspired guest rooms with high-tech amenities, featuring live music by an outdoor fire pit, a dipping pool, and a restaurant/bar as well as 2,000 square feet of interior meeting space and over 2,000 square feet of outdoor space including a covered pavilion and open-air lawn. www.valenciagroup.com
Travaasa – The new luxury spa and resort combines adventure, culinary expertise, culture, fitness and spa treatments to provide a uniquely comprehensive destination experience. 70 guestrooms overlook the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve. Rates are packaged with meals, activities and a $125 daily golf or spa credit. Guests get a taste of Texas culture with two-stepping classes, a mechanical bull, harmonica lessons and stories by the fire pit. www.travaasa.com/austin
W Austin – Austin’s newest downtown hotel and condo complex anchors the 2nd Street District, where pedestrians meander among chichi boutiques and coffee shops. The W complex, known as “Block 21,” also includes the new Austin City Limits Live at The Moody Theater studio and music venue, AWAY® Spa and a highend restaurant, TRACE. www.whotels.com/austin
Austin Convention Center – Austin Convention Center is one of two convention centers in the U.S. and the only one in Texas to achieve LEED Gold certification for Existing Buildings. The facility earned LEED points for energy conservation, sustainable purchases, and innovation credits. Its commitment to conservation and environmental responsibility is conveyed throughout all facility departments including operations, housekeeping, food and beverage, landscaping, maintenance and administration. www.austinconventioncenter.com
Texas Meeting Destinations
IRVING CONVENTION CENTER HOTEL MOVES FORWARD
his June, the Irving City Council will take the next step towards the new convention center hotel. On Thursday, June 6, the city council will meet to potentially approve a hotel developer, within thirty days the hotel flag will be announced, and ground breaking is set for this fall, with a mid-2015 opening. On Thursday, Feb. 7, the Irving City Council approved a Memorandum of Understanding with Mortenson Development, Inc., which allowed the parties to move forward with a development agreement for a $90 million, 350room, upscale, full-service Irving Convention Center at Las Colinas (ICCLC) headquarters hotel.
“This is great news for the city of Irving. We have a beautiful, award-winning convention center located next to one of the largest airports in the world. This hotel and the amenities it brings will make Irving a highly sought after convention city, said Irving City Manager Tommy Gonzalez. “The business generated will result in a tremendous lift to our economic base.” Mortenson Development, Inc. will fund, design and build the hotel, which will also include a 300-space parking garage, a sky bridge linking the hotel to the ICCLC, and 20,000 square feet of additional meeting room space.
“Mortenson, Leo A. Daly and Swerdling & Associates are honored to have been selected by the City of Irving for this exciting project,” said Nate Gundrum, senior development manager with Mortenson Development, Inc.
"We have been very impressed by the focus and commitment of the City's staff, consultants and elected officials to get to this point in the project. We look forward to contributing our hotel development and construction expertise and structuring of public-private partnerships to ultimately complete the City's vision for the convention center."
“This is an important next step for Irving as we continue with our destination development vision – adding an attached headquarter hotel to the ICCLC has always been a part of the plan, and it has clearly remained a high priority for us. I am thrilled to see this 30 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
moving forward with the unanimous support of our City Council and our Board of Directors,” said Irving Convention and Visitors Bureau Executive Director, Maura Allen Gast.
“The next steps for the City remain the most critical – locking in the details of the development agreement and working with Mortenson to finalize the flag. The moment that’s done, our sales and marketing teams will be primed to hit the ground rolling.”
About Irving, Texas: Located immediately adjacent to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and between Dallas and Fort Worth, Irving, Texas, boasts more than 75 hotels and nearly 12,000 rooms. Las Colinas, a 12,000-acre master-planned community within the city of Irving, is known worldwide for its quality and uniqueness. The city is home to 10,000+ companies, 50 Fortune 500 companies, and the world headquarters of six Fortune 500 companies. For more information, visit irvingtexas.com. About the Irving Convention Center at Las Colinas: Located where Highway 114 and Northwest Highway meet in Irving’s Las Colinas area, the $133 million, 275,000 square-foot center takes a bold new direction in a landscape of traditionally “institutional” facilities. Its distinctive design and mission for top-quality service mirrors the sense of quality that exists in Irving’s 12,000-acre Las Colinas development. For more information, visit www.irvingconventioncenter.com
Texas Meeting Destinations
Hilton Arlington Texas enters final phase of $10 million Renovation The Hilton Arlington Hotel, located near Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas between Dallas and Forth Worth, enters into the final phase of its extensive multimillion-dollar hotel renovation. The total hotel refresh will include all 308 guestrooms and suites, public corridors, lobby, meeting and event space, exterior facade, fitness and business centers, and executive lounge. The majority of the hotel renovation is expected to be complete by the end of 2013, while enhancements to the public areas of the hotel and its restaurant are scheduled for completion in early 2014. The hotel has completed the renovation of six guestroom floors and all of its 11,000-square-feet of meeting and function spaces.
The design of the Arlington, Texas hotel embraces the new global repositioning and design of the Hilton Hotels & Resorts速 brand portfolio creating a gracious sense of arrival for its guests and incorporates elements of the brand's new earthy design palette of blues, browns, and beige hues into its overall aesthetic.
"This renovation will enhance the traveling experience for our guests and will provide them with stylish new accommodations, functional work spaces, and a refreshing new environment for their travel to Arlington, Texas," says James Shandor, General Manager.
The Hilton Arlington Hotel is located at 2401 East Lamar Boulevard in Arlington, Texas. For additional information about the Hilton Arlington Hotel, to make reservations or to plan an upcoming event, contact the hotel at (817) 640-3322 or visit Arlingtontx.Hilton.com.
The Woodlands Waterway Cruisers Offer Unique, Off-Site Venue For Group Catered Events
Meeting on the water has been given an all-new meaning in The Woodlands, just 30 minutes north of Houston, where conferees can board a Woodlands Waterway速 Cruiser for a unique off-site dinner or reception. Private charters are available on board the air-conditioned cruisers seven days a week through Landry's Restaurants, Inc. which coordinates all catered event logistics. Groups can experience a seated dinner for up to 20 passengers or appetizers and cocktails for up to 35 as they cruise along the Waterway's 1.4-mile long corridor while taking in the natural beauty of the Woodlands. Since launching the catered charters last year, the service has been very well received by planners. Besides the Waterway Cruisers, The Woodlands offers a number of off-site venues for entertainment, recreation and team building. Conferees can spend a relaxing afternoon or team-building activity while kayaking on The Woodlands Waterway or enjoy the wooded scenery exploring the 194 miles of hike and bike trails in The Woodlands. Nearby sports fields are also available for recreation and team-building activities. For more information on meetings in The Woodlands, visit www.MeetingsInTheWoodlands.com. Or contact The Woodlands Convention & Visitors Bureau at 877-963-2447.
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Texas Meeting Destinations
Hilton Americas-Houston Director of Sales and Marketing Receives Prestigious Circle of Excellence Award
Houston’s Largest Hotel Recognized for Excellence in Industry
ilton AmericasHouston is proud to announce that Director of Sales and Marketing Janice O’Neill-Cox has been recognized by Hilton Worldwide’s Circle of Excellence (COE) program as Director of Sales and Marketing of the Year for the Hilton Hotels brand.
The Circle of Excellence represents the very best of Sales, Catering and Event Services team members within the Hilton Worldwide family. Winners of this prestigious award are considered to be among the best in the hospitality industry and are chosen for the award based on annual achievement of revenue goals. “Consistently meeting and exceeding revenue goals, Janice is an asset to Hilton Americas-Houston and to Hilton Worldwide,” said Joe Palmieri, general manager, Hilton AmericasHouston. “Her positive attitude and enthusiasm make her a valuable team player, and we’re thrilled that she has gained entry into Hilton Worldwide’s elite Circle of Excellence.” Directly connected to the George R. Brown Convention Center, the Hilton Americas-Houston contains the city’s largest number of guestrooms, ball-
rooms, hotel meeting space, and the most technologically advanced services available under one roof. Conveniently situated between Toyota Center and Minute Maid Park, this AAA Four Diamond rated hotel boasts 1,200 luxuriously appointed guestrooms, 91,500 square feet of flexible, technologically advanced meeting space, restaurant, lobby bar, coffee emporium and full service spa and health club. ABOUT HILTON HOTELS & RESORTS One of the most recognized names in the industry, Hilton Hotels & Resorts stands as the stylish, forward thinking global leader in hospitality. From inaugural balls and Hollywood award galas to business events and days to remember, Hilton is where the world makes history, closes the deal, toasts special occasions and gets away from it all. The flagship brand of Hilton Worldwide continues to build upon its legacy of innovation by developing products and services to meet the needs of tomorrow's savvy global travelers while more than 144,000 Team Members shape experiences in which every guest feels cared for, valued and respected. Today, the Hilton Hotels & Resorts portfolio includes more than 550 properties in 80 countries and the brand remains synonymous with "hotel." Hilton Hotels & Resorts is one of Hilton Worldwide’s ten market-leading brands. Begin your journey at hilton.com.
Hispanic Association Meeting News In Wake of Historic Latino 2012 Voter Turnout, Latino Policymakers to Chart Future Course at NALEO 30th Conference in Chicago
National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO)
Three-day event to feature the largest gathering of Latino policymakers in the country and keynote addresses by local, state and national leaders Following the Latino community's historic turnout in Election 2012, the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) will assemble the largest gathering of Latino policymakers for the NALEO 30th Annual Conference. Considered the nation's annual Latino political convention, the event will take place June 27-29 in Chicago, Illinois. This year's conference will feature more than 1,000 Latino public officials and supporters from communities across the country. Conference participants will join policy leaders for panel discussions on various issues on the national agenda, including immigration reform, education, healthcare reform implementation, climate change, and an in-depth overview of the growing influence of Latinos in the Midwest.
The NALEO conference occurs against the backdrop of two breaking developments. Latino voters are expected to increase their decisive influence on national elections. The NALEO Educational Fund projects that the eligible Latino electorate will reach 25.2 million in 2014, an increase of 18.5% from 2010. This growth will continue in 2016, when the eligible Latino electorate is estimated to reach 28.5 million. In addition, NALEO members will be gathered and poised to react to several U.S. Supreme Court decisions expected in June that will affect the Latino community, including decisions on the constitutionality of the Voting Rights Act, affirmative action, and Arizona's proof of citizenship requirement to register to vote.
The NALEO conference has become the preeminent forum for the nation's leadership to engage Latino officials and the millions of constituents NALEO members represent. Last year's conference included back-to-back addresses by President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney, the first time both candidates addressed the same Latino audience during the campaign. For information about the conference and registration, please visit the NALEO website at www.naleo.org/annualconference. About NALEO: The National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials is the leadership organization of the nation's more than 6,000 Latino elected and appointed officials.
Latino Evangelicals Gather at Record Breaking Board Convention, Leadership Conference's foundation, which was Launch Imago Dei Initiative established to uphold the principles of righteousThe National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, the Hispanic Evangelical Association, held its annual board convention in Miami, Florida, to a record-breaking gathering of America's leading Hispanic evangelical leaders. National representatives of the 52 largest denominations, 22 chapter directors, University Presidents, scholars, megachurch pastors, and parachurch CEOs all gathered for the purpose of outlining the priorities for the 40,118 church member organization. Additionally, the Imago Dei Initiative was launched at the annual convention in response to the National Hispanic Christian
ness (vertical) and justice (horizontal), of the Imago Dei and Missio Dei concepts. The NHCLC Board of Directors serve the nation's largest Christian Hispanic organization by unifying, serving and representing millions in the Hispanic Born Again Community via its 40,118 member churches and reconciling the vertical and horizontal of the Christian message through its 7 Directives of Life, Family, Compassionate Evangelism, Stewardship, Justice, Education and Youth. More information at NHCLC web site: www.nhclc.org.
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hispanic association meeting news
The Latino Coalition 2013 Small Business Summit Reaches New Heights
he Latino Coalition, a leading advocate for Latino-owned, small and medium-sized businesses, in conjunction with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce hosted a record breaking America's Small Business Summit 2013 from April 29 to May 1 in Washington, DC. With a commitment to building a stronger American economy, The Latino Coalition brought together government leaders, national and international business figures and hundreds of corporate delegates from the United States and abroad to discuss important issues to small business including procurement opportunities, newly available financing, risk management, legal reform, healthcare, immigration and international trade. "The 2013 Small Business Summit was an incredible achievement for small business," said Hector Barreto, TLC's Chairman and Former Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration (20012006). "Small businesses are leading the way and this summit is now the largest event of its kind in the country. We drew over 3,000 small business owners from
across the nation and covered everything from accessing corporate and government contracts to healthcare and its impact on the economic growth of small business." Chairman Hector Barreto speaks at The Latino Coalition 2013 The BusiSmall Business Summit. (Photo courtesy of Max Taylor 2013) ness Matchmaking component to the summit is the owners from across the country to nation's leading non-profit small busi- research and develop policies relevant to ness procurement program. Over the Latinos. TLC is a non-profit nationwide last six years, Business Matchmaking organization with offices in California, has coordinated over 80,000 face-to-face Washington, DC and Guadalajara, Mexmeetings and facilitated billions in veri- ico. Established to address policy issues fiable contracts for small firms. that directly affect the well-being of HisThe Latino Coalition will host its panics in the United States, TLC's agenWest Coast Small Business Summit in da is to develop initiatives and partnerSan Francisco, CA on October 9. ships that will foster economic equivaAbout The Latino Coalition: The lency and enhance overall business, ecoLatino Coalition (TLC) was founded in nomic and social development for Lati1995 by a group of Hispanic business nos. Visit www.thelatinocoalition.com.
Clorox And The Hispanic Scholarship Fund Award Twelve Hispanic Moms And Teens With $120,000 In Scholarships The Clorox Company and the Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF) announced the twelve recipients of the Clorox Sue単a Sin Limites ('Dream Without Limits') scholarship program, aimed at supporting college-bound Hispanic high schoolers and Hispanic moms. From the nearly 5,000 applications received, six mothers and six high school seniors will be awarded a $10,000 scholarship each to attend an accredited U.S. university during the 2013-2014 school year. "At Clorox we recognize the importance of dreaming big and pursuing a higher education degree as the key to a brighter future," said Robin M. Santos, PR Manager at The Clorox Company. "Along with the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, we are proud to be able to have a positive impact in the personal and professional lives of six remarkable Hispanic high school seniors and six deserving Hispanic mothers through our Sue単a Sin Limites scholarships."
34 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
The Hispanic Scholarship Fund was pleased to collaborate
with Clorox to bring to life this first-time-ever partnership target-
ing U.S. Hispanic moms, in addition to high school seniors.
"At HSF we are thrilled with the success of the Clorox Sue単a
Sin Limites scholarship program and are honored to be the chan-
nel through which twelve Hispanic moms and teens now have
the possibility of realizing their higher education goals," said
Fidel Vargas, President and CEO of the Hispanic Scholarship
Fund. "With Clorox's investment we are one step closer to putting
a college degree in every U.S. Hispanic household." For more
information on Sue単a Sin Limites and the scholarship recipients,
Henry Cisneros, Former Secretary of HUD, Delivers NHU Commencement Address hispanic association meeting news
Cisneros says NHU is a pioneer in higher education for Hispanics
he National Hispanic University (NHU) held its 28th commencement ceremony on May 11 and celebrated the accomplishments of 85 students who earned their master's and bachelor's degrees, teacher education credentials and certificates. The Hon. Henry Cisneros, former secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and current chair of NHU's advisory board, addressed the graduates, sharing that this is a time of great promise in America and that there are no limits to what the graduates can accomplish.
"Today is a day of gratitude and congratulations to the graduates. You have exercised discipline and hard work. You have mastered a body of knowledge and personal skills that will last far beyond your knowledge gained," said Mr. Cisneros. He advised the graduates, "Keep intellectually curious and restless. This graduation is not the end of your education."
Mr. Cisneros also congratulated and praised NHU as a place that recognizes Latinos and is a pioneer in educating Latinos saying, "Congratulations to NHU, what a national treasure it is to have the only institution created in this way ... this is the future ..." Mr. Cisneros highlighted what he sees as continued growth at NHU with its expanded program offerings, both on campus and online. At the San Jose ceremony, NHU honored Mr. Cisneros with a Doctor of Humane Letters, Honoris Causa, for his tireless work and commitment to improve the lives of so many through
Henry Cisneros, former secretary of HUD, speaks at NHU's 28th commencement ceremony. (PRNewsFoto/The National Hispanic University)
education while contributing to the rebuilding of their communities.
Mr. Cisneros began his career serving three terms as a city council member. In 1981, he became the first HispanicAmerican mayor of a major U.S. city, San Antonio, Texas. During his four terms as mayor, he helped rebuild the city's economic base and spurred the creation of jobs through massive infrastructure and downtown improvements. In 1992, President Bill Clinton appointed Mr. Cisneros to be the HUD secretary, where he was credited with initiating the revitalization of many of the nation's public housing developments and with formulating policies that contributed to achieving the nation's highest-ever home ownership rate. After leaving HUD in 1997, Mr. Cisneros was president and chief operating officer of Univision Communications. Currently, Mr. Cisneros is executive chair of the CityView companies and remains actively involved in urban investing and building
for community revitalization projects in large cities throughout the United States.
About The National Hispanic University: For more than 30 years, The National Hispanic University has provided Hispanic students and others with access to quality higher education. Located in San Jose, Calif., the university offers a diverse portfolio of online and campus-based undergraduate, graduate and certificate programs in business, education, child development and computer science. Students are supported in a multicultural and collaborative learning environment that is based on Familia, a personalized approach that fosters students' success through mutual respect and cultura. The National Hispanic University, a member of the Laureate International Universities network, is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). For more information, visit www.NHU.edu. www.hispanicmeetingstravel.com | HM&T 35
Meeting Planner Incentives
The Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club offering new “Design Your Deal” group promotion
onsidering conducting a meeting or program in the Southeast? Then you should check out the new “Design Your Deal” group promotion that is being offered by The Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club in Southwest Florida.
Available to new bookings for programs between June 1st and December 24th of any year, the promotion provides your choice of appealing perks for booking a minimum of 20 rooms on peak nights (with a minimum of two peak nights). To take advantage of the promotion, the contract must be signed by July 31, 2013. The 317-room beachfront resort features 34,000 square feet of meeting space plus many beautiful outdoor venues. The 125-acre resort is Southwest Florida’s only beachfront resort with an on-site championship golf course, world-class spa, and award-winning tennis center.
The “Design Your Deal” promotion provides the choice of up to two perks for groups from 40-100 room nights; up to four perks for groups of 101-200 room nights; and up to six perks for groups of 201+ room nights. Perk choices for groups from 40-200 room nights include:
· One complimentary standard guest room, per 30 actualized
· One upgrade to a one-bedroom suite for program peak nights
· Two upgrades to Gulf of Mexico view rooms at the group rate for program dates
· Two staff rooms at 50% off group rate for program dates
· One complimentary VIP round-trip airport transfer
· Complimentary welcome beverage and welcome refreshment 36 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
The resort completed its latest phase of renovations in January 2013, which included the opening of a new Gulf-view ballroom named The Everglades Room.
· Complimentary Internet in guest room & general session room
· One complimentary suite for VIP over program peak nights
· Spa service discount booklets for group
· 15% discount off AVI audio/visual services (minimum applies, excludes labor)
· 10% off AVI audio/visual services (minimum applies, excludes labor) · 20% attrition
· 10% discount on current banquet menus · One complimentary coffee break
· Group rate available 3 days pre- & postevent dates.
Groups of 201+ rooms can choose up to four perks from that list, as well as an additional two perks from the following list:
· A complimentary one-hour reception
· 5% credit to the master account on sleeping rooms
· Two VIP complimentary round-trip airport transfers
· Four staff rooms at 50% off group rate for program dates
· 15% discount on current banquet menus
· 25% attrition (Cannot be used in conjunction with 20% above) · Two complimentary coffee breaks.
Perks must be selected at the time of contracting, and have no additional value if not utilized or selected at the time of contract. The promotion is based on availability, and a food/beverage minimum and attrition clause is required. Blackout dates and restrictions may apply.
For more information on the promotion call the resort’s group sales department at (800) 866-1946, or complete a RFP at www.naplesbeachhotel.com or you may email the resort at firstname.lastname@example.org and reference the “Design Your Deal” promotion.
ew Orleans Downtown Marriott at the Convention Center, a convenient convention hotel in New Orleans, is offering dynamic meeting packages for planners booking events for peak months in 2013. The larger the group, the larger the incentive.
Meetings taking place during select 2013 dates are eligible to receive exciting incentives based on the size of the event.
Groups of any size receive: • Complimentary meeting room Internet access • 10 percent off in-house audiovisual services • 10 percent off parking for attendees Groups hosting 200 or more room nights receive: • Complimentary meeting room Internet and data projectors • 15 percent off in-house audiovisual • 15 percent off parking for attendees
Groups with more than 250 room nights for a New Orleans conference receive the most perks, including: • Complimentary meeting room Internet and data projectors
• 20 percent off food and beverage packages • 20 percent off audiovisual services • 20 percent off parking for attendees • Meeting planner choice between a 2014 Mardi Gras or Jazz Fest package for two, including airfare and a four-night stay for two adults This offer must be booked by Dec. 24, 2013 and held on select dates. It is not valid for previously contracted groups and cannot be combined with other offers. Additional terms and conditions apply. Please contact the hotel for details, visit NewOrleansMarriottConventionCenter.com.
About New Orleans Downtown Marriott at the Convention Center: Discover a contemporary hotel in downtown New Orleans Arts District. New
Orleans Downtown Marriott at the Convention Center is located near the French Quarter, Cruise Port and a multitude of the city's finest dining and entertainment options. Housed in a renovated 19th-century cotton mill, this hotel is surrounded by premier restaurants, shopping and attractions. New Orleans lodging amenities include a fitness center, Starbucks, business center and swimming pool. Indulge in contemporary Creole cuisine at Wolfe's in the Warehouse, or unwind in Wolfe's Lounge with your favorite cocktail or local brew. With more than 25,000 square feet of flexible function space, the hotel is ideal for both intimate gatherings and large corporate events. For more information, to make a reservation or to submit a request for proposal, call 800305-6342.
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meeting planner incentives
Book 2013 meetings at New Orleans Downtown Marriott at the Convention Center and experience unforgettable perks
Meeting Planner Incentives
L a s Ve g a s
EXPERIENCE FIVE STAR MEETINGS AT MANDARIN ORIENTAL, LAS VEGAS
eeting and event planners can now receive even greater value at Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas with the Five Star Meetings offer. In honor of the property’s Forbes Triple Five-Star award for the hotel, The Spa and Twist by Pierre Gagnaire, the Five Star Meetings offer will help meeting planners produce events that are imaginative and memorable whether they’re conducting extravagant productions or intimate meetings.
Meeting Planner Tips
Five Star Meetings includes five room upgrades to luxurious suites, five elaborate in-room welcome amenities, five convenient airport transfers, five relaxing Tian Quan Thermal Spa experiences and USD 5 per person credit to the Master account. Offering legendary and professional service, Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas colleagues are dedicated to ensuring every
event exceeds expectations, from choosing the perfect venue on property, to designing the ideal décor and crafting innovative menus to delight meeting guests.
Awarded with the most elite of ratings, Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas received three Forbes Five-Star ratings for the second consecutive year and remains the only resort in Nevada with this prestigious rating. To qualify for the “Five Star Meetings” offer, functions must be conducted between May 1 and September 15, 2013. “Five Star Meetings” cannot be combined with any other offers, promotions or existing agreements. Blackout dates apply. For information please contact Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas’ sales
department at 1 (702) 590 3350 or email
email@example.com. Visit www.man-
Take Any Event from Idea to Execution with EVENTASTIC
ventastic, a new online event planning solution takes direct aim at the hundred thousand plus event planners working in North America today, offering these professional party planners a suite of tools that take an event from start to finish, with brand new features never before seen on the online event planning landscape. Event spending worldwide is close to $500 billion, and 90% of non-profits indicate that events are extremely important to the success of their campaigns, and yet 59% of event planners do not today use social media to promote their events, Eventastic harnesses this for them. Eventastic, which launched this year after nearly a year of beta testing, takes event planning to the next level with such capabilities as: • Video Invitations: proven to increase open rates for email distribution, Eventastic's video invitation feature allows event planners to keep the entire event process paper-free and green, while transforming 38 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
the invitation process into a unique interactive experience for guests. • Online Ticketing: Using the Eventastic platform, event planners and organizers can handle all ticketing online to drive the best revenue returns. • Photo Sharing: Using Eventastic's photo sharing feature, event attendees and party guests can upload and share candid snaps taken with their smartphones and live stream them at the venue. • Cash Gifting: Gift pooling has never been easier for guests. Using Eventastic's cash gifting feature, guests celebrating special events such as birthdays, anniversaries or Mitzva's can contribute a specific dollar toward a larger group gift with payment processed safely through PayPal. • Cash Donations: Event organizers planning charity or other fundraising events can collect donations and meet financial goals more easily through Eventastic's cash donation feature, again processed through PayPal. • Video thank you's: At the close of an
event, event organizers can tap into the video feature again to send out thank you videos to attendees, and remind them of upcoming events. • Social Media: Eventastic is completely wired into all popular social media, allowing event organizers to promote events through channels such as Facebook and Twitter. "Any event planner would agree that staying organized is probably the single most important aspect of planning a successful event and the use of technology can alleviate stress from an organizational standpoint. Eventastic can help manage any event of any size - from a small family reunion to the largest of charity galas," says Eventastic founder, Randy Bird. Eventastic offers a free sign up and is free to use for all non-cash generating events. For more information or to register today visit the site at www.eventastic.com.
eventscalendar June National Association of Latino Independent Producers NALIP Conference 14 Sheraton Universal Hotel Universal City, CA June 7-9, 2013 League of United Latin American Citizens National Conv. & Exposition Caesars Palace • Las Vegas, NV June 17-22, 2013 National Hispanic Media Coalition MediaCon Pasadena Convention Center Pasadena, CA June 20, 2013 McDonald’s Hispanic OwnerOperators Association The MHOA Marketing Symposium The Westin Resort & Casino • Aruba June 25-27, 2013 National Association of Latino Elected Officials 30th Annual Conference Swissotel • Chicago, IL June 27-29, 2013
July National Council of La Raza Annual Conference & Latino Family Expo Ernest N. Morial Convention Center • New Orleans, LA July 20-23, 2013 Society for the Advancement of Chicanos & Native Americans in Science Summer Leadership Institute Stanford University July 22-26, 2013 American GI Forum 2013 National Conference Embassy Suites Hotel Denver, CO July 24-27, 2013
August Association of Latino
Professionals in Finance and Accounting 41st Annual Convention Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center • Washington, DC August 3-7, 2013
m e e t i n g s
c o n f e r e n c e s
National Association of Hispanic Nurses 38th Annual Conference Crowne Plaza Hotel New Orleans, LA August 6-9, 2013 National Association of Hispanic Journalists Excellence in Journalism Conference Anaheim Marriott Anaheim, CA August 24-26, 2013
Several associations will meet in Las Vegas this year including the League of United Latin American Citizens.
September Hispanic National Bar Association 38th Annual Convention Hyatt Regency Denver Denver, CO September 4-7, 2013
Latino Elected Officials – Educational Fund 9th Annual National Summit on the State of Latino Education Washington, DC September 30 - October 2, 2013
United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce 34th National Convention Hilton Chicago • Chicago, IL September 15-17, 2013
National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering National Symposium and Continuum Meeting Washington Marriott Wardman Park • Washington, DC September 30 - October 3, 2013
Latino Hotel & Restaurant Association Hotel & Restaurant Investment Conference Westin Diplomat • Hollywood, FL September 25-27, 2013 Hispanic Dental Association 21st Annual Meeting Boston Marriott Copley Place Boston, MA September 27-29, 2013 Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, Inc. Public Policy Conference Walter E. Washington Convention Center • Washington, DC September 30 - October1, 2013 National Association of
October HENAAC 25th Annual Conference Powered by Great Minds in STEM Hyatt Regency • New Orleans, LA October 3-5, 2013 National Association of Hispanic Publications 28th Annual Convention and Business Expo Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel Anaheim, CA October 3-5, 2013 Society for the Advancement of Chicanos & Native Americans in Science SACNAS National Conference
Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center • San Antonio, TX October 3-6, 2013 International Association of Hispanic Meeting Professionals 18th Annual Educational Conference & Trade Show Renaissance World Golf Village Resort • St. Augustine, FL October 9-12, 2013 National Society of Hispanic MBAs 24th Annual Conference & Career Expo Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center • San Antonio, TX October 10-13, 2013 Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents 10th Annual ALAS Education Summit Denver Marriott City Center Denver, CO October 16-19, 2013 Hispanic Association of Colleges & Universities 27th Annual Conference Hilton Chicago • Chicago, IL October 26-28, 2013
www.hispanicmeetingstravel.com | HM&T 39
Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project Announces Grand Prize Winner Social Events
Adriana Garcia and Centro Cultural Aztlan each receive $15,000 Grant from Leading Tequila Brand
n April 17, 2013 Chicana artist and San Antonio resident, Adriana Garcia, was named the winner of the Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project and its $15,000 grant. Jose Cuervo Tradicional â€“ Mexico's No. 1 super-premium tequila with the same recipe used in Cuervo's original tequila in 1795 â€“ will also award $15,000 to Centro Cultural Aztlan, a local nonprofit organization that promotes the arts and culture in San Antonio, Texas.
"The Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project uncovered some of the most talented Latino artists across the country," said Ami-Lynn Bakshi, Vice President Marketing, Jose Cuervo. "Adriana's mural beautifully portrayed the importance of Latino culture and heritage, and how it influences the face of the new America, which was one of our 40 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
main goals for the Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project." Garcia's original acrylic-paint-on-canvas mural, titled "Todo Tiene Su Efecto", "Everything has an Effect," used images of women to portray the Latino heritage. Each image reflects the important role that ancestry has as a foundation of traditions and how it contributes to contemporary culture. One of the underlying structures of the piece is a tree that symbolizes the history of human evolution and life's interconnectivity. To Garcia, individuals become closer to their ancestors by passing on their ancestral culture to build the next generation. "My main goal, as I created my mural, was to celebrate the importance and influence of our heritage," said Garcia. "More than a competition, the Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project gave me the opportunity to express and celebrate my Latino culture and use my mural to benefit my community." In addition to the $15,000 grant to Garcia, the Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project will also make a $15,000 donation to Centro Cultural Aztlan. Founded in 1977, Centro Cultural Aztlan serves the local community of San Antonio with multiple cultural programs that range from the visual and literary arts to
music and dance. The culturally focused non-profit organization caters to its community with the ultimate goal of promoting and celebrating Latino arts and culture. Launched in August 2012, the Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project invited artists from coast to coast to paint an original mural inspired by their Latino heritage. Representing New York, Southern and Northern California, Florida, Illinois, Nevada, Washington, Georgia, Arizona, and Texas, the 10 murals were showcased on Jose Cuervo's Facebook page from January 15 through February 28, 2013 where consumers 21 years of age and older voted for the mural that best portrayed their Latino heritage. The Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project also worked with the National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures (NALAC) to serve as a consultant for the Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project across each phase of the program to engage artists, Latino communities and nonprofit organizations. Jose Cuervo Tradicional reminds you to enjoy responsibly by drinking in moderation and designating a driver or taking public transportation. Web Site: www.josecuervo.com.
Coming in Fall of 2013
www.hispanicmeetingstravel.com | HM&T 41
Conservancy of Southwest Florida opens newly renovated 21-acre Nature Center C
onservancy of Southwest Florida officially reopened the new 21-acre Conservancy of Southwest Florida Nature Center during a two-day Grand Reopening Weekend Festival held in April. The newly renovated Conservancy of Southwest Florida Nature Center, located off of Goodlette-Frank Road just south of the Naples Zoo, is designed to raise awareness of the importance of protecting the water, land, and wildlife in the region.
The $20 million in sustainable renovations at Conservancy of Southwest Florida included a new entrance, four additional acres of nature preserves, new filter marshes, three new buildings and three renovated buildings. Conservancy of Southwest Florida Nature Center offers a variety of new programs and experiences for the public and members to enjoy.
Visitors enter the Conservancy Nature Center from Smith Preserve Way, just south of Naples Zoo on Goodlette-Frank Road. Spectacular native species, including endangered gopher tortoises, are seen meandering through the Christopher B. Smith upland preserve.
The Dalton Discovery Center is the focal point for the guest experience with several "natural" southwest Florida ecosystems featuring interactive exhibits, a touch tank exploration and a live loggerhead sea turtle in a 5,000 gallon patch reef tank. The von Arx Wildlife Hospital treats more than 2,200 injured, sick and orphaned native animals each year. Guests can observe baby animals in a nursery viewing area and learn about animal care, as 42 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
well as observe wading birds in their last stages of recovery in the Windfeldt Shorebird Pool. Eaton Conservation Hall and the Jeannie Meg Smith Theater offer a state-of-the-art multi-media experience with presentations, daily programs, speakers and more. A new Conservancy film produced by Elam Stoltzfus is currently featured in the Theater. Ferguson Learning Lab will be home to the Conservancy of Southwest Florida STEM Institute, where hands-on environmental studies incorporate the latest in science, technology, engineering and math.
At the Allyn Family Lagoon and Dock, guests search for wildlife and manatee on a leisurely electric boat cruise, or rent a kayak for a closer look at nature in a mangrove-lined lagoon up to the Gordon River. Guests can explore the secrets of how the Shotwell Wavering Family Filter Marsh cleans and purifies water, and view wading birds and wildlife from the gazebo. In addition, the Bradley Nature Store showcases nature-inspired gifts, books, toys, games and more. The Nature Center also offers short walking trails and is designated as Site #69 on the Great Florida Birding Trail. The public can help protect the region's water, land and wildlife by volunteering, becoming a Conservancy member, or making a donation.
To plan your visit to the Conservancy of Southwest Florida Nature Center, visit www.conservancy.org or call 239-262-0304.
GULF COAST DESTINATIONS
A True Texas Beach Town
alveston Island is a historic beach town located on the Gulf of Mexico just 50 miles from Houston. The island is best known as a vacation destination, offering 32 miles of beaches, a variety of family attractions, Texas’ premier cruise port and one of the largest and well-preserved concentrations of Victorian architecture in the country. Galveston Island is home to popular amusements such as, Moody Gardens and Schlitterbahn Galveston Island Waterpark, as well as a variety of museums and recreational activities from surfing to birding. Beach Recognitions: The Galveston Island State Park was recently named one of the top 5 "Best Gulf Coast Beaches" by the Travel Channel – the only Texas beach to make the list which is published on the Travel Channel’s website. The article describes Galveston as feeling like "a major resort destination" able to attract visitors from across the country to its beaches and downtown historic district. It dubs the Galveston Island State Park a "quiet oasis" where visitors can break from the masses to enjoy outdoor activities like bird-watching, biking, picnicking, fishing and beach camping. The state park is located on Galveston’s West End, providing access to both the Gulf of Mexico and Galveston Bay. The recognition from the Travel Channel comes just weeks after another media leader in the tourism industry – Family Vacation Critic – named Galveston one of the ‘Top 10 Family Vacations in 2013.’ For more information on Galveston Island, contact the Galveston Island Convention & Visitors Bureau, toll-free at 1-888-GAL-ISLE, or explore the state-ofthe-art website, www.galveston.com.
www.hispanicmeetingstravel.com | HM&T 43
Summer Fun The great allure of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, Alabama
In Coastal Alabama
he Alabama Gulf Coast is comprised of 32 miles of sugar white sand. It is located on the northern Gulf of Mexico between Pensacola, Florida which is 30 minutes to the east and Mobile, Alabama which is 90 minutes to the northwest. This gem of a beach destination boasts emerald green gulf waters, sandy white beaches, pristine golf courses, with all types of lodging accommodations from brand hotel names to beach house rentals. This Gulf Coast Destination makes for an ideal summer getaway with a loved one, a family vacation or a weekend away with a group of friends.
Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Recognitions: • Gulf Shores was named to the top 10 tourist towns in 2013 by FamilyFun magazine • The 2013 SportsEvents Readers’ Choice Awards • Travel Channel’s best Gulf Coast beaches • SmarterTravel.com’s “10 places you should go while they're still cheap” • Nashville Lifestyles’ “best luxury locations in the U.S. for discerning travelers” • Gulf Shores was a finalist in Budget Travel's contest to find America's coolest small town • Orange Beach was nominated for World Fishing Network's Ultimate Fishing Town contest Alabama’s Gulf coast was also named Country Roads’ favorite family-friendly escape. For more information on this family beach destination, visit www.gulfshores.com or www.orangebeach.com.
ALABAMA GULF COAST ZOO
Animal Planet fans around the world know about the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo thanks to its primetime series “The Little Zoo that Could.” This coastal zoo offers visitors a unique experience with close observation decks, daily animal shows, baby tiger encounters. For more information, please call 251-968-5731or visit www.alabamagulfcoastzoo.com.
Photos courtesy of Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism. 44 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
GULF COAST DESTINATIONS
THE PEARL - The Newest Luxury Resort On Florida’s Emerald Coast O
pening summer 2013, The Pearl brings a new level of luxury to Rosemary Beach on Florida’s Emerald Coast. Overlooking the picturesque Gulf of Mexico, the resort features beautifully appointed accommodations, destination worthy cuisine, a welcoming spa, and plush meeting facilities in the heart of Northwest Florida’s most exclusive seaside community.
The Pearl, a 55-room luxury resort, anticipates all the amenities guests may need for a relaxing and memorable vacation. With almost all rooms featuring a private balcony, luxurious in-room spa products by skincare expert Kerstin Florian, a refrigerator stocked with Nordaq FRESH water and juices, and a Keurig Coffee & Tea Brewing System, as well as complimentary valet parking for overnight guests, The Pearl is a rare find for today’s most discerning traveler. “The Pearl has been carefully crafted to capture the relaxed elegance of life on Florida’s Emerald Coast, yet bring a new level of refinement and excitement to guests and locals alike” says Bill Shoaf, Managing Director. “Rosemary Beach is a special place on the coastline and we look forward to welcoming guests to what we anticipate will be one of the country’s finest luxury resorts.” On the cusp of today’s most advanced technology, The Pearl offers guests the Intelity App, enabling them to book dinner reservations, room service, or place concierge requests before or during their stay via an iPad available in each room. The resort is also the first in the United States to offer in-room Apple TV’s, allowing guests to stream wirelessly from the complimentary high-speed wireless internet.
Guests can unwind from the moment they awake by starting the day with locally-inspired spa treatments at the property’s intimate spa retreat. The afternoon can be spent lounging at the pool, enjoying private cabanas and poolside service from Sol Luna. Those looking for a more active vacation can take advantage of the amenities at the Rosemary Beach Fitness Center & Tennis Club. Whether guests are relaxing or staying active, The Pearl keeps them nourished with complimentary morning and afternoon refreshments like fresh fruit and house-made sorbet. Honoring the states and countries neighboring Rosemary Beach around the Gulf Coast of Mexico, Executive Chef Michael Guerra showcases the best flavors of the region at two distinct dining destinations. The menus at Havana Beach restaurant take influences from the flavors found along the Gulf of Mexico, such as Louisiana Creole, Texas Coast, Mexico, and Cuba, while Sol Luna, the rooftop lounge adjacent to the resort’s pool, offers a casual setting under the sun, featuring a menu of hand-thrown wood fired pizzas and lighter fare.
The Pearl supports local businesses on a hyper level, sourcing meats, fish, and produce for the restaurants from small production, family-owned businesses within 100 miles of Rosemary Beach. In addition, The Pearl has commissioned special art from two local artists-in-residence: Tommy Crow, whose photography and videography installations adorn the walls throughout the resort, and Allison Wickey, selected to create a one-of-a-kind mural for The Pearl’s private dining room. Rooms at The Pearl start from $279 in the low season and $459 in the peak spring and summer months. For rates, reservations, and further information on Rosemary Beach’s newest gem, please visit www.thepearlrb.com or call 850.588.2881. www.hispanicmeetingstravel.com | HM&T 45
S u m m e r Tr a v e l T i p s
10 THINGS TRAVELERS CAN ASK FOR ON A PLANE
If you don't ask, you will not get. Thanks to reducing the size of airplane seats to saving money on in-flight amenities, airlines have a cheap reputation nowadays. However, for those who dare to ask, they may find that these airlines may not be as bargain-basement as they seem.
he next time a passenger has a headache or a thirst that requires more than the standard airline refreshments, they can simply ask for the things that they need. Listed below are 10 things on the 'just ask for' listings.
empty water bottles. This service is often needed and necessary because people must empty their water bottles before they can get to the plane.
Help Finding a Doctor Sometimes a passenger may have a medical emergency while on board. In these situations, the passenger can request assistance from a doctor. The stewardess will respond immediately by
senger waits until everyone has been seated in their proper place.
Short-Term Babysitting Flying alone with small children can be difficult for any mother. Sometimes the mother will need help. Based on specific airline rules, the attendants can provide short-term babysitting, e.g. when the mother needs to use the bathroom.
Wing Pins for Kids Most airlines have the little flyers wing pins available to celebrate kidsâ€™ flights. Therefore, the children can ask the flight attendants for the wing pins. The Whole Can Flight attendants will only pour a small amount from the can of soda before they give the passenger a little cup, which means, the drink that is left over can be served to the next passenger. However, if a passenger is extra thirsty they can request the whole can. Basic Medicines and Bandages If a passenger has a splitting headache that will not go away, flight attendants can provide basic medication to them. Most passengers will not know this unless they ask. This also includes asking for bandages. Water-Bottle Refills As long as a passenger is onboard the plane, flight attendants can refill their 46 HM&T | Hispanic Meetings & Travel
asking for a physician over the loud speaker. Seconds When the flight attendants serve the passengers, they are instructed to serve specific amounts. However, if the person is still famished for whatever reason, they can ask for seconds and it can be granted â€“ as long as the flight attendant has leftovers. Help Switching Seats Sometimes people may be traveling together, but they are seated in different places. Asking for a switch in seating is legal to do. However, most flight attendants are more receptive when the pas-
Cockpit Tours With all of the security concerns in airports today, most people may think that the cockpit is off limits but it is not. If a passenger asks, many pilots will provide the tour at the end of the flight. In fact, some pilots love to share their offices with passengers that have an interest, specifically children. Sanitizing Wipes With all of the germs that people pass around today, sanitizing wipes are also available via the assistance of flight attendants. For more travel tips and insights visit www.tourism-review.com.
riceline.com has said that June and August will be the most affordable months for domestic air travel this summer. Travelers planning international trips will find their best fares in August. The data is based on a 30-day sampling of published-price summer airline tickets booked through priceline.com. The average domestic airfare for June travel is $375. August average domestic airfare is $377. July flyers will pay an average domestic airfare of $388.
For international flights originating in the U.S., the average airfare for August is $883. The average international airfare for July is $929. And the average international airfare for June is $971.
Priceline.com also offered the following tips to help summer travelers find cheaper airfare and keep travel costs down after the airfare is booked:
• Don't be afraid to mix things up. If that first search doesn't yield an affordable fare, try picking a few different
dates for potentially better results. Also, look for early morning or late evening flight times that tend to be less expensive. Sometimes, flying out on one airline and back on another will result in a cheaper fare than flying round-trip on a single airline.
• Try Name Your Own Price®. Even for the peak summer season, priceline.com has tickets available at savings of up to 50% off published fares. With Name Your Own Price® tickets, travelers can begin their trips anytime between 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. and there may be up to one connection each way.
• Pack as lightly as possible, then weigh and measure all baggage. Some airlines charge up to $30 or more for a checked bag and $40 or more for an overweight/oversize bag – and that's each way. Check your airline's maximum requirements for checked and carry-on bags to make sure you won't incur extra fees.
• Need a rental car? Bundle it into your
airfare. Priceline.com's airline ticketing service lets passengers add a rental car to their trip, often at savings of up to 40% over published rental car rates. Watch for the special rental car offers when booking your airfare. Or book a car separately at www.priceline.com/rentalcars/.
• Use Express Deals(sm) for discount hotel rooms. Express Deals is the nobid priceline.com hotel service created especially for families and travelers who need specific amenities along with a pre-negotiated priceline.com discount of up to 45% over published hotel rates.
Customers can choose hotel deals that guarantee specific amenities, including a pool, gym, on-site restaurant, free breakfast, free parking, pet friendly, and even a particular bedding type. After booking at the discounted price, the name of the specific hotel is revealed.
Check www.priceline.com/hotels/ for more details on all these tips.
Choice Hotels International and Yelp Create CustomBranded 'Official Hotel of Summer Road Trip Guide'
hoice Hotels International, Inc. and Yelp have announced an innovative relationship to help leisure travelers plan fun and affordable summer road trips across America.
The lodging franchisor and review mega-site have teamed up to create the "Official Hotel of Summer Road Trip Guide" which will run through the end of the summer. Targeting people who travel by car, the program aims to boost consumer awareness of both companies by exposing Yelp's enormous user base to Choice's domestic portfolio. The Choice Hotels “Official Hotel of Summer Road Trip Guide” is a handy guide designed to help leisure travelers plan unique road trips this summer, highlighting nearby
Choice Hotels brand properties along the way. Choice Hotels has more than 5,000 hotels throughout the United States. Visit www.yelp.com/summerroadtripguide for more information and to plan your road trip. Additional information can be found on the Choice Hotels International, Inc. web site, www.choicehotels.com. www.hispanicmeetingstravel.com | HM&T 47
June And August Will Be The Most Affordable Months For Summer 2013 Air Travel, According to Priceline.com
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