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FEBRUARY 2011 executive office

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EUROPE Discover Malta’s Historic Past

4 8 9 12 16 NORTH AMERICA / SAN DIEGO - page 0

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CARIBBEAN John Issa, Chairman of SuperClubs, Honored as a Top Hotel Caribbean Entrepreneur


Just $899 to Experience Martinique With French Lesson in March

22 EUROPE / MALTA - page 00

cruise editor

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Guests Warm Up and Save Up to 25% at Bolongo Bay Beach Resort, St. Thomas


Isla Mujeres Is Preparing for Carnaval 2011


LATIN AMERICA Tara Tours Books Passenger One Million to Nicaragua


BelizeRus at Black Orchid Resort, Belize


Mona Birch • Ann Charles • Gail P. Dubov Judith Glynn • Barry Goldsmith • Peggy Hageman George Hairston • Al Haut • Marjorie Klein • Peter Lowy Nancy Marcantonio • Anita Mason D.O. Christian Rieger • Knox Robinson


Latin Trails Launches New Luxury Cruise Galapagos Grand Odyssey


SATA Presents Oscar Lobo Award 2010


Helen Kitti Smith • Robin Swados • Diane Terry Travel World News (ISSN 1044-4602) is published monthly by Travel Industry Network, Inc., 28 Knight Street, Norwalk, CT 06851-4707. The cost of a subscription in the USA is $25, in Canada $40. For subscribers outside USA or Canada, the rate is $80. Please send check or money order in U.S. dollars payable to Travel World News. For change of address, please enclose your mailing label and send to: Circulation Department, Travel World News, 28 Knight Street, Norwalk, CT 06851-4707. Periodicals postage paid at Norwalk, CT, and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Travel World News, 28 Knight Street, Norwalk, CT 06851-4707. Address advertising inquiries and/or editorial copy to: Travel World News, 28 Knight Street, Norwalk, CT 06851-4707. Copyright 2011. All rights reserved. Printed in USA. No part of this publication may be reproduced without permission. All advertising in Travel World News is based on data submitted to the Publisher by the advertisers. The Publisher shall not be liable for the accuracy or inaccuracy of any information contained in Travel World News and shall not be liable, including but not limited to consequential or special damages, to any party for any products or services advertised or reported upon herein. The Publisher shall not be responsible for typographical errors. All information contained herein is subject to change without notice by the parties providing such products and services. The Publisher reserves the right to reject any advertising that has been submitted at his sole discretion. Upon providing a refund of any amount paid to the party whose submittal was rejected, the Publisher shall not have any liability to any party for such rejection.

AFRICA South African Airways Vacations Offers New Air-Inclusive, Luxurious Yet Affordable Packages Throughout Africa—and 12% for Agents


Great Safaris Celebrating 2011 With Remarkable Deals


Morocco’s 10th Tourist Convention: The Vision of a King


Nine Botswana Properties Make 2011 Condé Nast Traveler Gold List



Goway Features Namibia Tours—

Lonely Planet’s Best-Value Destination


COVER PHOTO CREDITS: San Diego Convention & Visitors Bureau; Malta Tourism Authority; South African Airways Vacations.

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MITM AMERICAS ANNOUNCES 2011 VENUE MITM Americas is returning to Central America where it was held back in 2001 in Guatemala. The 17th edition of MITM Americas, Meetings and Incentive Travel Market, will be held in the city of San Salvador, El Salvador, November 16â&#x20AC;&#x201C;18, 2011. The event is sponsored by Corsatur, Salvadorean Tourism Corporation. Again, MITM will bring to San Salvador top European, USA and Latin American MICE buyers to meet with travel and tourism suppliers from all the Americas. In the last edition in Quito, Ecuador, the exhibitors rated MITM in the following way: fair one percent, good 31 percent and excellent 68 percent. Details and registration for San Salvador MITM are available online. MITM Americas,,; GSAR Marketing,,













WILLIAM H.COLEMAN,INC. The Travel Industryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Leading Event Management Firm

WILLIAM H.COLEMAN,INC. The Travel Industryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Leading Event Management Firm

4 â&#x20AC;˘ FEBRUARY 2011

AIBTM 2011 EXHIBITORS REPRESENT THE FOUR CORNERS OF THE GLOBE AND THE USA AIBTM 2011, the meetings and events industryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s first ever large-scale exhibition taking place in the US (June 21â&#x20AC;&#x201C;23, 2011, Baltimore), is continuing to attract international exhibitors from six continents and the four quadrants of America. As a result of EIBTMâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s recent success in Barcelona, a number of the showâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s exhibitors signed on the spot for next yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s AIBTM event. With just over six months to go, signed contracts are rolling in from exhibitors across North America, South America, Europe, Australia, Africa and Asia, including, Costa Rica Tourism Board, Jamaica Tourist Board, Madrid Convention Bureau, Tourism Australia, Egypt, and Malaysia Convention & Exhibition Bureau. Several exhibitors will be partnering at the show. Boston Convention Marketing Center is joining the San Diego Convention Center to create an East-West union, thus increasing their space fourfold. Scottsdale CVB and Tucson CVB have joined the Phoenix CVB to create the Arizona Pavilion, and Dallas, Arlington, Austin and Irving Texas are joining Greater Houston Convention & Visitors Bureau, San Antonio Convention & Visitors Bureau and Fort Worth to deliver Tourism Texas. Steve Knight, AIBTMâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Project Manager explains, â&#x20AC;&#x153;AIBTM begins June 21 with a whole day dedicated to professional education. The trade exhibition opens on June 22nd and continues on the 23rd, providing exhibitors with the opportunity to meet with over 3,000 meeting planners from the US and the globe. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s over 640,000 meeting minutes between buyers and suppliers. No other industry event in North America can boast anywhere close to these figures.â&#x20AC;? AIBTM, (exhibiting contact),; Reed Exhibitions, â&#x20AC;˘ Travel World News



Daniel Miranda, director of the Congress Palace of Vigo, Galicia, Spain, on an interview giving to CONEXO, predicts a great congress demand at the new facilities of the city of Vigo. On the other hand, the managing company of the palace, Congrevigo, has been integrated to the city’s Convention Bureau, which has presented its plan for 2011. Miranda has been the chosen person to direct the course of the brand new Vigo’s Congress Palace, with its official opening planned for March. The first important event to be held in the congress palace will be MITM Euromed, April 27–29, 2011. It will be significant not only for the number of participants accommodated, but more importantly for their character; congress organizers, decision makers, incentive houses and MICE professionals from all Europe, USA, Mexico and Brazil will all be in attendance and exposed to Vigo’s touristic value. This is the XV edition of MITM and the second time it takes place in Vigo, where it was held back in 1998, at the Fair Grounds. MITM Euromed,; GSA Marketing,,

APTA will again be hosting the Annual Focus on Africa trade conference, as well as a pavilion for its corporate members at the popular New York Times Travel Show to be held February 25–27 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City. Participating APTA corporate members will retain their exhibition space throughout the show. Attendees will have the opportunity to meet trade representatives from tourist boards, airlines, operators, hotels, lodges and camps in Africa and network with retail agents and industry colleagues. Conferences with panel discussions and information sessions will explore critical market issues. The show schedule is: February 25, 2–7 pm, Trade Show on the floor open to the entire agent community; and Exhibition & Consumer Seminars open to the public on February 26, 10 am–6 pm, and February 27, 10 am–3:30 pm. Industry professionals should also mark the dates for the Discover Africa Road Show 2011 to be held March 8 in Denver, March 10 in Seattle, March 15 in Phoenix, and March 17 in Los Angeles. The event will feature dynamic workshops with trade exchange opportunities, great door prizes, and a keynote address by John Kasaona, a leader in the drive to reinvent conservation in Namibia. APTA (The Association for the Promotion of Tourism to Africa),

New May Dates New Strictly Business Format New Hotel New Lower Registration Fees New PrePost Machu Picchu Centennial Tours New Event Management Firm Travel World News •

Register now for the new Peru Travel Mart, at the brand new Westin Libertador Hotel, Lima, Peru, May 15-18 at

WILLIAM H.COLEMAN,INC. The Travel Industry’s Leading Event Management Firm



INDUSTRY EVENTS TRAVEL INDUSTRY ORGANIZATIONS LINE UP TO SUPPORT 2011 BOSTON GLOBE TRAVEL SHOW Travel industry trade organizations are stepping up to support the 2011 Boston Globe Travel Show. From the Africa Travel Association and United States Tour Operators Association to Travel World News, organizations across the globe are working with show organizers to inform their membership about the event and drive trade professionals to the show. Each partner will have exhibit space on the show floor. Many organizations will offer presentations and certification courses for travel industry professionals. The three-day event will feature more than 250 travel exhibitors and suppliers, representing every segment of the travel industry and offering detailed information on trips to every region of the world. The 2011 Boston Globe Travel Show will feature a variety of pavilions showcasing travel destinations from around the world, cruise specials, adventure travel, vacation rentals, vacation planning and packages, and more. The show also will include cultural seminars, music and dance presentations, express passport services and an array of activities. Attendees will learn about new and exciting travel opportunities ranging from budget vacations to luxury escapes, vacation rentals and more. The three-day event will feature more than 250 travel exhibitors and suppliers, representing every segment of the travel industry and offering detailed information on trips to every

POACHERS TOTO GUARDIANS FROMFROM POACHERS GUARDIANS APTA – The Association for Promotion of Tourism to Africa – is proud to present John Kasaona, leader in the drive to reinvent conservation in Namibia.

Meet your colleagues in the African travel industry and hear John speak during the 2011 Discover Africa Road Show. As featured in the documentary “Milking the Rhino”, John shares the ways in which he works to improve the lives of rural communities by involving them in the management of their environment the wildlife that share their land. 8 March - Denver 10 March - Seattle 15 March - Phoenix 17 March - Los Angeles Visit for more information

6 • FEBRUARY 2011

region of the world. The 2011 Boston Globe Travel Show will be open to the public from 5:30–8 pm on Friday, February 11; from 10 am–6 pm Saturday, February 12; and from 10 am–4 pm Sunday, February 13. Travel trade professionals are welcome throughout the weekend, with an exclusive trade-only viewing time from 3:30–5:30 pm, Friday, February 11. The Boston Globe Travel Show is the top-attended consumer travel show in the United States, attracting an affluent and educated audience from throughout New England. In 2010, more than $5 million in travel was booked on the show floor, across more than 250 exhibitors. Sponsorship info is available by contacting Ted Peterson. Those interested in exhibiting should call Liesl Robinson. Boston Globe Travel Show, 888-210-8895 (exhibiting), (sponsorship),

MPI DELIVERS POWERFUL LINEUP FOR IMEX AMERICA Strategic partners IMEX America and Meeting Professionals International (MPI) have announced keynote speakers and general sessions designed by MPI for the inaugural IMEX America tradeshow October 11–13, 2011, at Las Vegas’ Sands Expo Convention Center, launching with MPI’s MeetDifferent Day of Education and Innovation. Professionals who passionately study unique concepts that challenge the status quo are coming to Las Vegas with MPI to deliver serious business solutions to IMEX America attendees. The lineup includes: Peter Sheahan, Internationally known best-selling author of Fl!p and five other books. Known for his extreme energy and cuttingedge insights, he will challenge attendees to overturn traditional work paradigms. Dr. Brené Brown, whose unique work has studied vulnerability, authenticity and perfectionism. Brown will delve into how “cool” sabotages connection and why laughter and creativity are essential components of resilience in these challenging times. Robin Sieger, Scottish businessman and international best-selling author of Natural Born Winners. A leading strategist, he will bring attendees engaging experiences and concepts of getting beyond change management and into change activation. With representatives from both IMEX and MPI meeting in Las Vegas at the Sands Expo & Convention Center at the VenetianPalazzo recently, new design details were confirmed. They include the first-ever MeetDifferent Day of Education and Innovation on October 10 as well as subsequent morning keynotes each day of the tradeshow. In addition to the powerful lineup of live speakers, MPI and IMEX America will continue to partner to present six educational webinars for meeting and event professionals at no charge throughout the year to introduce them to the style of education that will be presented in October. Meeting Professionals International (MPI),; IMEX America, • Travel World News

INDUSTRY EVENTS GIBTM RECOGNIZES MIDDLE EAST SIGNIFICANCE IN MICE SECTOR Confidence on the growth potential of the Middle East’s meetings and events sector has remained strong due to the increasingly significant role the region plays in a highly globalized economic setup. Combined with its seemingly unabated infrastructure development, the Middle East has presented itself as a premier location for holding meetings, conferences and exhibitions that are relevant on a global scale. “The abundance of venues in the region is helping to grow the sector,” said Lloyd Kenyon, Exhibition Manager of GIBTM, the fifth edition of which is set to take place at ADNEC in Abu Dhabi March 28–30, 2011. “More significantly, the importance of the region within the global economy will surely drive meetings and events.” GIBTM aims to attract more than 2,000 industry professionals, 300 Hosted Buyers and over 250 exhibiting companies. Some exhibitors that have already confirmed their participation include Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority, Government of Dubai, Sharjah Commerce & Tourism Development Authority, Silversea Cruises, Malaysia Convention & Exhibition Bureau, Seoul Convention Bureau, Oman Ministry of Tourism and Qatar Tourism Authority.

Business tourism currently accounts for around 70 percent of Abu Dhabi’s hotel guest profile with 10 percent of this emanating from the Meetings, Incentive, Conference and Exhibitions segment. And excellent flight connections make the Middle East an ideal location for global corporate gatherings; it is estimated that two billion people are within a four-hour flight radius of the Gulf. The 2010 Annual Middle East Industry Survey carried out by Reed Travel Exhibitions, predicted significant growth for the meetings and events sector, with increased numbers of events using a wider range of destinations. Attendees are expected to include national tourist organizations, destinations, convention bureaus, destination management companies, independent hotels and hotel groups as well as specialist service providers representing the Gulf and Middle East region, South and South East Asia, Europe, North Africa and beyond. GIBTM visitors and buyers include professionals involved in the planning or organization of incentive travel programs, congresses or events, such as conventions, conferences and meetings, corporate hospitality, incentive travel, international congresses, product launches, special events, staff motivation, training programs and business travel. GIBTM,; Reed Exhibitions,






9 – 13 March 2011,

Convention ticket included –


Messe Berlin North America Tel. +1.540 372-3777 · ·

Travel World News •

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MARCH 9-13 9-13 12-13 14-17 16-19 16-19 19-20 23-25 24-27 24-27 28-30 APRIL 7-10 13-15 14-16 19-22 20-22 27-29 28-30 MAY 2-5 11-13 12-15 14-18 16-18 19-20 21-25 26-29 JUNE 3-5 9-12 13-16 21-23 30-Jul AUGUST 30-Sept 1 SEPTEMBER 7-9 11-13 11-13 21-24 22-25 23 OCTOBER 4-6 4-6 6-8 11-13 12-14 19-21 21-23 NOVEMBER 7-10



ITB Berlin 2011 Discover America Pavilion at ITB Berlin Travel & Adventure Show Cruise Shipping Miami MITT 2011 Discover America Pavilion at MITT 2011 Travel & Adventure Show UITT TUR 2011 Discover America Pavilion at TUR 2011 GIBTM

Berlin, Germany Berlin, Germany Washington D.C. Miami Beach, FL Moscow, Russia Moscow, Russia Los Angeles, CA Kiev, Ukraine Gothenburg, Sweden Gothenburg, Sweden Abu Dhabi, UAE

SITC 2011 New Europe Travel Mart Toursib 2011 ASTA IDE Kazakhstan Intl. Travel & Tourism Fair DATE AITF

Barcelona, Spain Dubrovnik, Croatia Novosibirsk Russia San Juan, Puerto Rico Almaty, Kazakhstan Punta Cana, DR Baku, Azerbaijan

Arabian Travel Market Expotur TPOC Conference & Trade Show Travel Mart Global Spa Summit Faith Travel Conference & Expo International Pow Wow OneWorld Travel Mart

Dubai, UAE Costa Rica Louisville, KY Lima, Peru Bali, Indonesia Atlanta, GA San Francisco, CA San Francisco, CA

Karibu Travel Fair ITE Hong Kong Intl. Luxury Travel Market ASIA AIBTM BTC

Arusha, Tanzania Hong Kong, China Shanghai, China Baltimore, MD Rimini, Italy


Beijing, China

La Cumbre Travel Mart Latin America THETRADESHOW Astana Leisure FITA 2011 IFTM Top Resa

Las Vegas, NV Florianopolis, Brazil Las Vegas, NV Astana, Kazakhstan Mexico City, Mexico Paris, France

The Motivation Show Ukraine Intl. Travel Market TTG Incontri IMEX America Cancun Travel Mart ABAV Akwaaba: African Travel Market

Chicago, IL Kiev, Ukraine Rimini, Italy Las Vegas, NV Cancun, Mexico Rio De Janeiro, Brazil Lagos, Nigeria



8 •FEBRUARY 2011 • Travel World News

INDUSTRY NEWS KAREN HOFFMAN TO HEAD NEW YORK-BASED BRADFORD GROUP AS PRESIDENT The Bradford Group, an award-winning New York-based marketing, advertising and public relations agency with a focus on travel and tourism, including sustainable tourism development and investment, has announced that Karen B. Hoffman, formerly Sr. Vice President, will now lead the agency as President. Bradford Group’s clients include CHI Hotels & Resorts (CHI); the Tanzania Tourist Board USA Representation; the American Tourism Society; the Egyptian Tourist Authority (special projects), the World Trade University Global Secretariat’s Tourism Marketing Summits; and the International Institute for Peace Through Tourism’s Global Summits and Regional Africa Conferences. Hoffman created and initiated the prestigious World Tourism Award, now in its 13th year, on behalf of Reed Travel Exhibitions and co-sponsors American Express, Corinthia Hotels and the International Herald Tribune. Hoffman serves as First Vice President on the International Board of the Africa Travel Association (ATA) and KAREN HOFFMAN received an award from ATA for “Outstanding Promotion to the Continent of Africa.” She is also an active member of Skal, the Cornell Hotel Society and American Tourism Society. Hoffman also serves as Good Will Ambassador for “Just a Drop,” the clean water charity of Reed Travel Exhibitions. She has been a guest speaker at many industry conferences as well as at the Harvard Business School Africa Club Conferences and at New York University’s Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports Management. Hoffman holds a BA in Political Science from Boston University; Masters in Travel and Tourism Administration from the New School in New York City; and completed the Advanced Management Program at Cornell University Hotel School. The Bradford Group,

TRAVELSAVERS ADDS MORE HIGH-PROFILE AGENCIES TO ITS NETWORK Currently generating over $20 billion in annual sales, Travelsavers has signed on several high-profile travel agencies as part of its worldwide network and is poised for further growth this year. New to their network are Boscovs Travel (PA), Travelers Service Company (PA), Cosmopolitan Travel (MI), and Millstream Travel (OH). Travelsavers provides a comprehensive program to help independent travel agencies in both the leisure and corporate sectors grow their businesses and profits. The group’s offerings include exclusive travel products, proprietary technology, leading after-hours services, operational support, and niche market networks. When asked why they joined the Travelsavers organization, Pat Cinfici, President of Boscovs Travel said, “We felt that Travelsavers was the best of both worlds for us in terms of leisure and corporate business. Travelsavers fit our business model better than the other programs out there. I was very impressed with the team Travelsavers has at all levels. They are professional and proactive in not only welcoming us in to the organization but in enhancing our overall business. It is refreshing to find an organization that truly wants to work with their members.” New agency John Fahl, President of Millstream Travel, commented, “We joined Travelsavers because we felt that they offered us the greatest opportunity to expand our business model. We plan to expand our corporate business and the Forte product will be especially helpful for that.” Travelsavers,,

TOURISM CARES AND TRAVEL SOUTH USA AIDING GEORGIA AQUARIUM PROJECT Tourism Cares, the travel industry non-profit dedicated to preserving the travel experience for future generations, will join forces with Travel South USA during the 2011 Travel South USA Showcase, February 22–24 in Atlanta to raise money for the Sea Turtles Project of the Georgia Aquarium. Funds will be raised by selling bracelets and sea turtle plush toys to those in attendance. The Georgia Aquarium in conjunction with the Georgia Sea Turtle Center will apply monies raised toward sea turtle conservation and rehabilitation. Along the southeastern Atlantic and Gulf coasts, sea turtles and their habitats are endangered. Last year, the Georgia Aquarium and Georgia Sea Turtle Center worked together to successfully rescue, rehabilitate and release animals affected by a single severe cold stun event. Without specialized veterinary care, appropriate facilities and community support, emergencies like this would go without response. Both the Georgia Aquarium and the Georgia Sea Turtle Center are committed to educating and inspiring their more than two million combined annual visitors to increase the awareness of sea turtle habitat and wildlife conservation challenges, promote responsibility for ecosystem health, and empower individuals to act locally, regionally, and globally to protect the environment. “Travel South is excited to once again partner with Tourism Cares in support of Save the Sea Turtles Project,” said Kevin Langston, Chairman of Travel South USA and the Deputy Commissioner for Tourism for the Georgia Department of Economic Development. Tourism Cares,; Travel South USA,, Travel World News •



INDUSTRY NEWS HAHN AIR KICKS OFF 2011 WITH ENHANCED SERVICE TO TRAVEL AGENTS Following the maxim “Your Ticketing Choice—Our Commitment 2011,” Hahn Air is expanding its commitment to travel agents and will release several new services in 2011. The first milestone is the launch of the unique “Your Rooster” service. Disappointed with the industry’s lack of technical solutions to automatically prevent travel agents creating Agency Debit Memos (ADM), Hahn Air decided to develop its own technical tools to protect travel agencies. To give immediate support to its partners, Hahn Air’s “Your Rooster” enables them, once a year, to waive an ADM related to HR-169 e-ticketing. “Your Rooster” is available to IATA agencies registered on Hahn Air’s website and shows up in the “My Hahn Air” section. Each IATA agency is entitled to draw “Your Rooster” once in 365 days, waiving one ADM based on previous revenue. Full terms and conditions are The title “Your Rooster” is associated with Hahn Air’s own company name, as “Hahn” means “Rooster” in German. Thus, “Rooster” is the official call sign of Hahn Air. Moreover, the airline was named after the area where it was founded in 1994: the former military airbase Hahn that is now known as Frankfurt Hahn Airport. Besides operating as an IOSA-certified German IATA carrier, Hahn Air today also operates the industry’s leading universal E-Ticketing platform. For Hahn Air’s ongoing initiative “Your Ticketing Choice—Our Commitment 2011” several more services will follow in 2011. Hahn Air,

TRAVELERS CAN GLIMPSE CULTURES AROUND THE GLOBE WITH USTOA A variety of tours and custom vacations from U. S. Tour Operators Association members offer a glimpse into archeology, food, history, and culture around the globe that may be hard to find independently. Splendors of the Nile—An Egyptologist provides insight into current archeological finds and ancient history during the 12-day/11-night Smithsonian Journeys Travel Adventures escorted tour. With dates through 2011, highlights include Cairo, Pyramids, Memphis, Sakkara, Luxor, Valley of the Kings and Queens, and Aswan, with a four-night Nile River cruise. Price begins at $1,699 ppdo, land only. Collette Vacations, 800-528-9917, Historic Cities and Yangtze River SuperValue—On this 12-day/11-night tour available through March 1, 2011, travelers learn about Chinese history and culture through educational lectures and traditional performances. The tour, priced from $1,899 ppdo, includes Shanghai, Xi’an, Beijing, and a Yangtze River Cruise. Pacific Delight Tours, 800-221-7179, Italy Bellisimo—Travelers enjoy an authentic dinner in a Tuscan countryside restaurant set among olive groves on this escorted tour to Rome, Capri, Assisi, Venice, and Montecatini. For travel through April 1, 2011, this 11-day/10-night tour is priced from $2,125 ppdo, with airfare additional. Reservations are based on availability. Brendan Vacations, 800-421-8446, Costa Rica: Sun & Service—Students will experience rural life in Santos, Costa Rica, through volunteer activities like painting at the local school or preparing a garden. They also visit Poas Volcano, Arenal, Coastal Puntarenas, and Manuel Antonio National Park, and go on a bio coffee adventure. Cost for this nine-day, eight-night tour, which includes round-trip airfare, varies by group size and gateway. Explorica, 888-310-7120, Only in New York—On Travel Bound’s four-day, three-night planned vacation through March 31, 2011, visitors can discover Manhattan and delve into the history, landmarks, and famous movie locations of Brooklyn while sampling pizza at two locations. Priced from $784 ppdo, this custom itinerary offers accommodations at four-star Loews Regency Hotel on Park Avenue, a three-hour full circumnavigation cruise of Manhattan Island, and “A Slice of Brooklyn Pizza Tour” by bus. Airfare is additional. Reservations can be made through a travel agent. On all travel cited, restrictions and additional security fees, departure and local taxes and fees may apply. Prices may vary based on departure date and international currency fluctuations. USTOA,,

MEXICO CITY MAYOR MARCELO EBRARD WINS THE TITLE WORLD MAYOR The Mexico City Mayor, Marcelo Ebrard Casaubon, was awarded the 2010 World Mayor prize by City Mayors Foundation, among 840 city mayors worldwide. The Project (Mayor of the World) has been carried out since 2004 by the City Mayors Foundation, an international team comprised of experts in urban affairs seeking to recognize outstanding achievements of mayors from all regions of the world. Mexitours was granted the honor of being official tour operator, providing all the excursions in Mexico City and surroundings for the delegates and companions during the Local and Regional Leaders World Summit 2010 that took place in Mexico City last November. Top Seller Tours preferred by delegates were the Tlatelolco plus Guadalupe Shrine and Teotihuacan Pyramids Tour, Main Square walking tour, the Anthropology Museum visit plus Santa Fe, Frida Kahlo & Diego Rivera Tour and the Shopping Tour. These tours were available and provided in the three official languages of the summit—Spanish, English and French, since the event saw people from Morocco, South Africa, Australia, Brazil, Korea, Ecuador, Argentina, Spain, Malawi, Puerto Rico, Indonesia, Tanzania, Holland, Greece, Vietnam, France, Germany, Israel, China, and more. Mexitours was fundamental to warmly show the beauty of the city’s touristic attractions to all the visitors. Mexitours,, 10 • FEBRUARY 2011


BRISTOL HOTEL SAN DIEGO A Contemporary San Diego Boutique Hotel Located is within blocks of the Gaslamp Quarter, fine dining, world-class shopping at Horton Plaza, the Cruise Ship Terminal, the Convention Center, Petco Park, Theatre District, East Village, Little Italy, San Diego Concourse and the San Diego Bay and a short drive to any of the many sunny beaches, the San Diego Zoo, and SeaWorld.

One mission: deliver premier, quality dining, entertainment and cruise experiences. Today, the Respect Our Planet program also makes environmental responsibility a top priority, and guests continue choosing Hornblower for family vacations, weddings, corporate outings and galas.

Explore a City at Sea on this San Diego Navy Ship – a lifetime memory aboard the USS MIDWAY MUSEUM Relive nearly 50 years of world history aboard the longest-serving Navy aircraft carrier of the 20th century.


Historical, European-style hotel – original architectural aspects are still evident such as original marble on walls and stairways and brass elevator doors – all are preserved meticulously in keeping with our status of being listed in the National Register of historic places.

Simple sophistication with a bit of whimsical fun, history and elegance of the Victorian Era at the Horton Grand Hotel; a superbly crafted re-creation of San Diego history. One of the most popular and unique of the Downtown San Diego hotels.

Explore SeaWorld, head to the Gaslamp Quarter in San Diego’s revitalized downtown where shops and bistros mingle in near-perfect year-round weather. Hilton Hotels in San Diego – a long tradition of impeccable service and warm hospitality. SE SAN DIEGO HOTEL’s sophisticated luxury combines elegant textures and Asian influenced design. An ambiance unrivaled in southern California and found nowhere else in the world. Located in the Gas Lamp District, the heart of downtown San Diego, the Hotel provides a truly unique experience and is sure to please even the most well-traveled guests.

Hotel Indigo is an upscale boutique brand that delivers a refreshing and inviting guest experience that is truly reflective of the local community. A Taste Of Europe in the Heart of San Diego's Little Italy Just outside, a charming stretch of Little Italy shops slopes gently down toward the harbor. Inside, a classic 60’s Mediterranean vibe, all at once vintage and modern.


San Diego East County, An Awesome Side Trip J U D I T H G LY N N



or some, it’s unthinkable to venture outside of San Diego. Why bother when California’s secondlargest city has an idyllic climate, 70 miles of pristine beaches, a world-class zoo, the lively Gaslamp Quarter, Legoland California and numerous family and individual attractions. But an hour’s drive northeast is San Diego’s East County, which is a fantastic rural experience. For example, there’s yearround apple-pie sampling in Julian. Nature lovers head for the Anza-Borrego Desert and its kaleidoscope of springtime wildflowers. Foodies dine in tiny Wynola at a Cordon Bleu-chef restaurant with a Spanish Mission visit nearby. And for the adventurous, an abandoned gold mine guided tour is topnotch. Taken individually, a suggested itinerary includes the following. Eagle Mining Company.

What To Do In Julian Julian turned its Gold Rush days into an apple industry bonanza. Today, the mountain hamlet has one traffic light and a population around 1,500. Its orchards are picked clean, especially for the annual Julian Fall Apple Days Festival. Granny Smith apples (the staple for Julian pies) are hauled in by the semi-load. Pie shops such as The Candied Apple Pie Company, Julian Pie Company, Mom’s Pies and Apple Alley Bakery bake thousands of pies and sell them for $3 a slice or around $14 for a whole pie. The pie pilgrimage led to Main Street specialty shops, nature hikes, an artists’ colony and the California Wolf Center offering paid private tours. Local historian, David Lewis, turned his 9,000 hours of town research into a memorable Haven of Rest Cemetery tour. Winemakers, Mike and Toni Menghini, transformed a former fruit-packing warehouse in the foothills of Volcan Mountain into Menghini Winery. Visitors mingle at the sampling bar to purchase or taste the recent bottling: Chardonnay, Syrah and Merlot ($22-$28). Sample pours cost $5 and include a souvenir glass. Newcomer Hawk Watch Winery in Warner Springs has won 31 medals for its Syrah. Tastings are $8 on Saturday and Sunday only. Julian Hard Cider has a Tasting Room at the Wynola Farms Marketplace and is sold in stores. Expect to find a fruity, Champagne-like, clear and bubbly drink in the beer-style dark bottle. Run, don’t walk to the Eagle Mining Company. Its two remaining gold-mining sites can be explored with a guide (760765-0036). Walk in 1,000 feet at the Eagle Mine entrance and exit 1,000 feet later at the adjoining High Peak Mine. Panning for gold with makeshift troughs pleases the kids. The on-site dusty museum holds Indian arrowheads; photos of 1800s townspeople; a vintage barber's chair and a potbelly stove. The 12 • FEBRUARY 2011

one-hour Folklore & Legends “Hot Spots” Paranormal Guided Tour on Friday and Saturday nights ($20) occurs within a darkened mine for optimal effects and goosebumps. 888-795-3475

Attractions Near Julian Jeremy’s On The Hill is located in Wynola on busy Highway 78. The restaurant has country-chic décor with 23-year-old Cordon Bleu chef and owner Jeremy Manley holding court in the kitchen. He’s a local boy who learned first-hand in his mother's restaurant and today buys from local farmers, including grass-fed bison for burgers or ships in Wisconsin cheese and Iowa-grown meat. Bison onion bratwurst with Jeremy’s paprika sauerkraut is a favorite as is Chambord Black Raspberry Crème Brule. Reservations suggested. Dudley’s Famous Bakery pies, pastries and fruit bars are sold in many San Diego establishments but its home base is Santa Ysabel on Highway 78. The pies are filled with almost three pounds of apples. Wall racks are lined with bread choices such as Pecan Maple, Baja Jalapeno and Garlic Sourdough. The deli attracts locals and Dudley devotees. It’s peaceful and inspiring at Mission Santa Ysabel with its primitive museum of Indian relics and dusty cases. But the nearby cemetery is fascinating and where parishioners’ graves are decorated with numerous mementoes depicting their lives. Entrance is free and welcomed (no photos, please). A candlelight vigil is held in early November. Drop into the first-class Santa Ysabel Art Gallery located in a former two-family home and under the loving curator eye of • Travel World News

NORTH AMERICA owner Annie Rowley. She features regional artists and James Hubbell, known as San Diego's Gaudi. His Hubbell House and Studios is near Julian and complemented with eight fantastical structures on its landscape. Spring and fall docent-led tours cost $40 per person. 760-765-3427 Lake Cuyamaca is partially surrounded by the 26,000-acre Cuyamaca Rancho State Park and stocked year-round with 44,000 pounds of fish. Various boat rentals are available; paddleboats are $15/hour. Free fishing lessons occur Saturday mornings. RV and tent sites are available as are a few cabins. Birders are drawn to Lake Cuyamaca since San Diego County has more bird species than any other U.S. county. Franz’s Lake Cuyamaca Restaurant is known for its wiener schnitzel and potato pancakes, plus its mini-store at this large lakeside complex.

Where to Stay in Julian and Near San Diego Orchard Hill Country Inn is a AAA Four-Diamond property that sits atop a secluded hill yet is steps from tiny and historic Julian. Some of the 22 rooms are in the main lodge, while others are cottages named for apples. All have high-end furnishings, gas fireplaces and Jacuzzi tubs. Wild turkey and deer roam throughout the nearby oak and pine trees. The gracious and original owners, Pat and Darrell Straube, are on-site and eager to share tips about the town. The Travel World News package offers a two-night accommodation, double occupancy, with full price for the first night and 50% off the second. A full breakfast and afternoon hor d’oeuvres are included. Guests must dine one night at Orchard Hill, which features local products. Offer ends May 31, 2011. Agent commission is 10%. 800-716-7242. The 265-acre Rancho Bernardo Inn Golf Resort & Spa is 30 minutes from the San Diego Airport and in East County. The Preferred Hotels and Resorts Worldwide member recently completed a $25 million-dollar renovation. Each of its 287 Guest Rooms and Suites feature amenities such as 42-inch TVs, wireless Internet, custom furniture and private patios or balconies. On site there's an 18-hole championship golf course, luxurious spa and the award-winning El Bizcocho Restaurant. Special to Travel World News is a one-night deluxe accommodation for two with breakfast, complimentary parking and resort fee. The Couple's Spa Escape includes for her an 80minute chocolate indulgence or strawberry and grapefruit Made Fresh Daily spa treatment (depending upon date). For him, it's a 50-minute deep tissue massage followed by a warming back scrub finish. Price is $499 plus tax, double occupancy. Black out dates and some restrictions may apply. Offer available through April 30, 2011. Agent commission is 10% on room revenue. 877-517-9340/”Sweet Retreat”;

San Diego Convention & Visitors Bureau for East County; Julian, Travel World News •

LOVE, ROMANCE, AND BRUBECK AT JW MARRIOTT STARR PASS RESORT AND SPA The Tucson Jazz Society presents Love, Romance, and Brubeck featuring the Brubeck Brothers Quartet including a celebration of their father’s hits such as “Take Five” and “In Your Own Sweet Way” on Sunday, February 13, at the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort and Spa. A special appearance by local favorites Brice and Eleanor Winston will top off the evening. The Brubeck Brothers Quartet features two members of one of America’s most accomplished musical families, Dan Brubeck (drums) and Chris Brubeck (bass, trombone). Guitarist Mike DeMicco and pianist Chuck Lamb complete the dynamic group. They have performed at concert series, colleges, and jazz festivals across North America and Europe. Although the quartet’s style is rooted in “straight-ahead” jazz, their concerts reveal an inherent ability to explore and play odd time signatures while naturally integrating the influences of funk, blues and world music. The group’s creativity, technique and improvisation reflects a dedication to melody, rhythm, culture and the spontaneous spirit of jazz. The February 13 concert will take place at 7:30 pm at JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort and Spa in Arizona. Tickets can be purchased online and special hotel rates are available at $159 a night (plus tax). Romantic VIP “tables for two” are available and include a split of champagne and four truffles for the sweetheart price per couple of $100 for members and active military with ID and a price per couple for non-members of $125. General admission tables are $25 for members, $35 for non-members, and $20 for students and active military with ID. Tucson Jazz Society,

AQUA HOTELS & RESORTS WELCOMES QUEEN KAPIOLANI HOTEL Aqua Hotels & Resorts has added the 312-room Queen Kapiolani Hotel to its Waikiki portfolio. Based in Los Angeles, YHB Hospitality Group purchased the Queen Kapiolani Hotel in 2009. Since then, it has quietly worked to renovate and restore the hotel to its original ambiance and prestige. “We are elated to have this significant and culturally focused Waikiki hotel join our group,” said Bill Henderson, VP of Development for Aqua Hotels & Resorts. Since acquiring it in 2009, YHB Hospitality Group has spent over $5 million in upgrades to the Queen Kapiolani hotel. Renovations include improvements and enhancements to the exterior and entrance; renovation of the sundeck with new pool furniture and pool bar; upgrades to guest rooms including new carpet, furniture, bedding, etc., creating a distinguished and attractive new option for travelers. Queen Kapiolani Hotel offers a range of guest rooms with private lanai and magnificent views, high-speed Internet access, refrigerator and coffeemaker. Hotel amenities include a third-floor swimming pool and sundeck, ballroom and Kulana Terrace Restaurant & Bar. Aqua Hotels & Resorts, FEBRUARY 2011 •


NORTH AMERICA ALASKA AIRLINES ADDS SERVICE BETWEEN PORTLAND AND THE BIG ISLAND OF HAWAII Alaska Airlines has increased seasonal service between Portland, Oregon, and Kona on Hawaii’s Big Island. These flights are in addition to the airline’s existing service from Portland to Kahului, Maui, and Honolulu. Additional flights run on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday of each week through April 9 on a schedule that follows: Portland–Kona leaves 5:40 p.m., arriving 9:50 p.m., and Kona–Portland departs 9:25 a.m., arriving at 5 p.m. Times are based on local time zones. The flights are operated with Boeing 737-800 aircraft, accommodating 16 passengers in first class and 141 in the main cabin. All flights to Hawaii offer Hawaiian-themed beverage and meal service. Customers traveling to Hawaii are offered complimentary “Hula Blend” coffee, custom designed for Alaska Airlines by Seattle’s Best Coffee, and exotic Hawaiian-themed meals-for-purchase in the main cabin for $6 or $7. Customers in the main cabin also receive complimentary Mauna Loa macadamia nuts and a Mai Tai or passion-orangeguava juice. With the added Portland–Kona service, Alaska Airlines offers 101 nonstop flights a week to four islands in Hawaii from Anchorage, Alaska, and six West Coast destinations. Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air, subsidiaries of Alaska Air Group, together serve more than 90 cities through an expansive network in Alaska, the Lower 48, Hawaii, Canada and Mexico. Alaska Airlines, 800-ALASKAAIR (252-7522), 800-392-0228 (TTY/TDD),

ISLAND PARTNERS HAWAII SELECTED AS 2010 BRITISH AIRWAYS FACE-OF-OPPORTUNITY WINNER Island Partners Hawai‘i has been chosen by British Airways as a 2010 Face-of-Opportunity winner and has been awarded travel to anywhere in the world to conduct vital business meetings in addition to attending the British Airways Face-of-Opportunity business conferences in New York and London. The award is part of the British Airways Face-to-Face program, which provides small business owners and entrepreneurs the critical tools for building business relationships abroad and stimulating growth through the power of faceto-face interaction. Island Partners Hawai‘i (IPH) is an event design and destination management company recognized for its creation and production of exceptional experiences for corporate incentive programs and small luxury groups throughout the state of Hawai‘i. The company believes these will enable it to significantly grow its client base in Europe within the next five years. IPH will be represented by Charlene Davé, the company’s European Account Manager for corporate and private luxe events. Prior to traveling to Europe, Davé will attend the British Airways Face-of-Opportunity conference in New York City February 2 where 14 • FEBRUARY 2011

IPH will receive free counsel from top influential international business experts while networking with venture capitalists, renowned entrepreneurs, media and other small business owners. The conference, which includes an introduction by Simon TallingSmith, Executive Vice President Americas, British Airways; and keynote speeches by Rhonda Abrams, bestselling author and USA Today small business columnist, and Bill Rancic, bestselling author and first season winner of The Apprentice; will provide IPH with additional tools in business planning, marketing and travel to assist the company’s strategies to grow its client network beyond North America. Additional information on Face-to-Face is available on British Airways’ website. British Airways,,; Island Partners Hawai‘i,

WESTGLOW RESORT & SPA ANNOUNCES DISTINCTION, RECOGNITION BY RELAIS & CHATEAUX At the 36th International Relais & Chateaux Congress in Capetown, South Africa, Westglow Resort & Spa was inducted as a new member of the prestigious Relais & Chateaux. Relais & Chateaux reviewed 100 candidates around the world with a commitment to selecting only outstanding properties with a truly unique character, ambience, food and service. Westglow was one of five US properties to earn this distinction. The news came along with an announcement that actor Richard Gere will be the 2011 Ambassador for Relais & Chateaux. There are only 42 properties with this distinction in the United States. Westglow Resort & Spa is in very good company in their region with the Inn at Little Washington, Blackberry Farm and the Fearrington House. Receiving the distinction from Relais & Chateaux is a great honor and testament to Westglow’s remarkable legacy, extraordinary staff and exemplary service and cuisine. Upon entering the Manor House, the focal point of the property, guests experience the hotel’s quiet elegance in both the classic warmth and hospitality customary to a family-run European hotel, as well as the modern amenities expected by the sophisticated traveler. A boutique property in the heart of a 40-acre estate, Westglow Resort and Spa is situated around an elegant mansion with panoramic views of the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina, the former residence of the famous artist and author Elliott Daingerfield, whose works hang in museums including the Metropolitan in New York and the National Gallery in D.C. Accommodations include impeccably decorated guest rooms in an elegantly restored Greek revival mansion and beautifully appointed mountain lodge-style suites in the Cedar Lodge. The Relais & Chateaux exclusive collection comprises 500 of the finest hotels and gourmet restaurants in 60 countries. Westglow Resort & Spa,; Relais & Chateaux, • Travel World News

Experience a journey through 7,000 years of history. The Maltese islands will capture your heart with their unique cultural heritage, diversity and hospitality. Truly Mediterranean The Heart of the Mediterranean1 110107_TravelWorldNews_7x1,25Zoll_hw.indd

07.01.2011 13:24:23 Uhr

Just takes your breath away...

Blessed with a superb climate all year around, stunning architecture and natural beauty, the Islands offer the ideal location for combining business with pleasure. Let our experience ... make yours a good one.

GODDESS TOURS TO MALTA caters to independent travelers, and small private groups. No two itineraries are ever identical, as we enjoy helping you explore special interests. We provide the ideal travel experience for those who love the stimulation of the unusual and thought provoking ... the perfect trip for those who ‘Don’t Like Tours’!

PRELUNA HOTEL & SPA has the best all-year-round location right on the Sliema seafront alongside a beautiful promenade. Perfect...Location... Retreat... Sun & Fun Getaway... Fitness, Relaxation & Beauty

VIRTRU FERRIES have been operating high speed ferries between Malta and Sicily since 1988. All the companies vessels fly the Malta Flag, are classed by Det Norske Veritas and are certified to the highest international and EU safety standards.

For 20 years our founding credo remains the same; to provide a professional and accountable service to our clients inworldwide, and sometime impersonal, We have achieved industry. this because we set out to build lasting relations with our partner firms, the visitors we've helped enjoy the Maltese Islands, and the leisure a nd business clients we've assisted in traveling overseas.

ur expertise lies in identifying needs and oproviding the best tailor-made solutions

THE RAFAEL SPINOLA ST. JULIANS HOTEL is ideal both for guests wishing a quiet and relaxed holiday and the young crowd wanting to party their nights away. The rooms are comfortable with good facilities and the Hotel boasts excellent staff wanting to make your stay as enjoyable as possible.

available. We ask lots of questions that help us identify precisely what is required.

achieved by an operational team tthathis isis known for being second to none. elivering consistent and outstanding dservice to all our clients at all times is our top priority.

5-star luxury in Malta’s historic Art Deco hotel

This exclusive 5-Star boutique hotel has been meticulously and sensitively restored to reflect its former noble standing. Perched on centuries-old bastions, surrounded by stunning baroque architecture, with its luxurious accommodation and award-winning haute cuisine, is truly a haven in which to pause and be pampered.

The building itself is very much part of Maltese culture, and has inherent tourist appeal, attracting many leisure guests to stay at the hotel.


Discover Malta’s Historic Past MALTA TOURISM AUTHORITY


he Mediterranean’s best kept secret is an archipelago called the Maltese Islands. At the cross roads of maritime routes, the Maltese Islands comprising of Malta, Gozo & Comino have been a home, stronghold, trading post and refuge for over 7,000 years of history. From temple builders to the seafaring Phoenicians, the time spent here by the Apostle St Paul, the gallantry of the Knights of St John, the short-lived occupation by Napoleon and the presence of British royalty, all have left their impressions for you to experience. Malta can be described as a living museum, since the Maltese are in close proximity of yester-years history, incorporating today’s needs & lifestyle amongst the many antiquities, former lived in caves, palaces, temple and baroque architecture that riddles these Islands.

Highlights of Malta Temples – The impressive ‘Hypogeum’ in Malta is a fascinating underground burial temple and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Constructed in the Neolithic period, it is a labyrinth of man-made chambers some 11 metres underground. Malta boasts a total of 11 UNESCO World Heritage Sites – an amazing point to remember for it’s tiny size. Among these sites are the Megalithic temples Hagar Qim and Mnajdra temples, the Tarxien temples and the world’s oldest free-standing temples in Gozo, called Ggantija. Older than the pyramids of Eygpt and pre-dating Stonehenge, the Ggantija temples date between 3600 and 3000BC Log on to site, under the ‘Visiting’ option for further information or to book in advance for single or multi-site passes. This is especially important to note for all visits to the ‘Hypogeum’. Limestone Heritage - The Limestone Heritage Park & Gardens offers the public a unique look at the Maltese Islands’ distinct stone and the geological make-up of the islands. This tour, accompanied by audio equipment in all languages inside a former quarry, traces the progress of Maltese culture throughout the ages. These can be witnessed in the various buildings, monuments and artefacts fashioned in stone – from the first free-standing structures to those elaborate creations being built today using this renowned stone. Log on to for more information and a gallery that will entice you to include this site on your next visit to Malta. St Agatha’s Catacombs - The martyr St Agatha is said to have hidden in these catacombs, found in Rabat (Malta), during the persecution of the Christians by the Roman Emperor Decius in 249 A.D, after she had fled Sicily and taken refuge in Malta. The crypt and catacombs are part of a historical complex, and 16 • FEBRUARY 2011

The magnificent ‘St Johns’ Co-Cathedral’ in Valletta. also comprises a church built above them as well as an adjacent museum. Some of the earliest and unique frescoes on the islands are found here. Tal-Mintna Catacombs - Tal-Mintna Catacombs in Mqabba are Paleo-Christian tombs grouped collectively next to each other. Although originally unconnected to one another these three separate hypogea have now been interconnected to form one larger complex. Like similar small clusters found in the vicinities, the interior excavation is made up of small galleries and oven shaped tombs, carved out on both sides of the passageways. The ritual table known as the "triclinium" table dominates the whole configuration of the crypts. It is suggested that the latter was used by the mourners to celebrate a banquet or feast for the dead. These burial chambers are quite richly decorated; elaborately carved scallop-shell decorations can be seen on the conchs of numerous window tombs frequently accompanied by a number of decorated pilasters flanking the entrance of the said window tombs. Eight pyramidal shaped 'lamp-holes’ can also be seen opposite the agape table. This site is open by appointment only. To arrange a visit to these sites contact De Redin Coastal Towers - The coastal towers were built during a span of sixty years during the time of the Knights of St John. They are classified into two distinct groups that reflect two separate concepts of coastal defence strategy. The first group were massive square-type towers fitted with heavy pieces of artillery and garrisoned by a sizable detachment of regular troops. These large towers were built not only to guard the major bays susceptible to invasion but were also expected to engage the disembarking enemy with their powerful guns while their garrisons were required to harass and reconnoitre the enemy. Then, between 1620 and 1649 the Knights introduced a much smaller type of coastal tower intended to serve • Travel World News

EUROPE solely as a permanent lookout post rather than as an isolated stronghold, enabling the Order's engineers to standardize and perfect their design from the previous ones above, such as the example at Wied iz-Zurrieq. The latter was to serve as a blueprint for the chain of thirteen watch-towers built by Grand Master De Redin and designed to relay bonfire warning signals on their roofs, all the way to Valletta. Valletta – Malta’s capital is a masterpiece of Baroque architecture. It is listed as a European Art City and a World Heritage City. Valletta was built as a fortress by the Knights of St John, under the guidance of Grand Master La Vallette, from whom it derives its name. Valletta is home to over 300 historical monuments, but St John’s Co-Cathedral is the highlight of this city ‘Built By Gentlemen for Gentlemen’. Caravaggio’s masterpiece The Beheading of St John is housed in this Cathedral. It is the only work of art actually signed by this infamous artist. Mqabba – this a small village in the south of Malta and is famous for it’s limestone quarries. In fact, the remains of extinct animals were found in Ta' Xantin and Ta' Kandja Quarries. The Ta' Mintna catacombs are found in this village. Amongst other important structures, one can find the Vincenti Tower and various chapels such as the Chapel of St. Basil, Our Lady of Sorrows, St. John and St.Catherine of Alexendria. The main church is dedicated to the Assumption of Our Lady. The Santa

Travel World News •

Marija feast in celebrated on the 15th of August and brings a great number of Fireworks enthusiasts to watch displays put on by the St. Mary Fireworks Factory. This is a world renowned Fireworks group who has brought countless of honors on both national and the international scale, winning amongst others, the Malta Fireworks Festival in 2005. They also won the world fireworks championship in Rome in 2007.

Malta Tourism Authority, ©Francesca Vincenti

MALTA FACTBOX: Travel – Malta is only 3 hours away from leading European Cities. Flights are frequent and available with scheduled or Low Cost Airlines. Seasonal Events – Between June and September the Islands are in full swing with the Festa Season all over the island. Each week a different village celebrates with Fireworks, processions and brass band marches along the streets. Churches inside and out are adorned with decorations, statues and banners, while mouth-watering traditional Nougat, Mqaret (Maltese deep friend date-filled savouries) are sold by brightly decorated carts.



EUROPE GERMAN CONVENTION BUREAU LAUNCHES MEETING PLANNERS’ GUIDE The German Convention Bureau has announced the launch of a 36-page guide aimed at helping meeting professionals. The guide, written by industry pro Richard John, is packed full of useful information designed to get organizers thinking about how to improve every area of their event planning, implementation and delivery. The guide is available in both hard copy and PDF download from the GCB website or by email request. The brochure also deals with questions about running incentive schemes, and highlights issues such as risk management and health and safety, event marketing, and topics such as communicating to the different generations now in the workplace. GCB’s 240 members include leading hotels, convention centers and destinations, car hire firms, event agencies and service providers of the German meetings and conventions industry. Maritim Hotels, Leipzig Tourismus und Marketing GmbH and Darmstadtium Science and Convention Center are Preferred Partners of the GCB. As Strategic Partners, Deutsche Lufthansa, Deutsche Bahn and the German National Tourist Board (DZT) support the work of the GCB. The GCB is an interface between organizers of meetings and conventions and suppliers of the German meetings market, offers advice and support for planning and organizing events, and provides


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contacts and addresses. Its website features an online search facility for meeting venues, newsletter, Germany guide, a CO2 calculator, and more. German Convention Bureau (GCB),,,

AIR MALTA OFFERS VIRTUAL TOOLS FOR PROMOTING WINTER TRAVEL TO THE MALTESE ISLANDS “The Malta Guide” is Air Malta’s state-of-the-art virtual destination guide designed to help travel professionals entice clients to visit the magnificent Maltese Islands from the comfort of their homes or travel agent offices. The Guide is filled with recommendations, video diaries, practical advice and “best of Malta” lists for discerning tourists. Additionally, it provides expert destination knowledge to agents along with virtual tools to help promote and sell this exotic Mediterranean destination. Boasting impeccably sunny weather, sprawling beaches, tempting cuisine, a thriving nightlife and more than 7,000 years of intriguing history, Malta appeals to every taste. The Malta Guide features destination-focused video diaries that serve as excellent marketing and promotional tools and can be emailed or shared through a variety of social media outlets such as Facebook, Twitter, Digg and much more—all with a simple click of a button. The guide also features informative “Best of Malta” lists like the Best Beaches, Top 10 Things to Eat and Top Historic Sites. Additionally, a section titled “Street Smarts” provides international visitors with practical travel information including island hospitals and health care services, currency and foreign exchange information, upcoming island events, public holidays and Fiestas, where to access Wifi and more. A simple drop-down menu allows agents to explore additional Malta travel information, including recommended spas, dining, hotel accommodations, sports, entertainment, shopping, nightlife and tours. Here’s a sampling of some “Best of Malta” recommendations: Top Historic Sites: Hal Saflieni Hypogeum (an underground temple hewn out of solid rock over 5500 years ago), the Silent City of Mdina (Malta’s first historic capital city), the mysterious Hagar Qim & Mnajdra Temples (Malta’s equivalent to Stonehenge, these ancient temples were built in 3600–3200 BC), Fort St. Elmo (the still-standing Fort that guarded Malta’s Grand Harbour in 1565). Top Things to Eat: Rizzi (Sea Urchins), Pastizzi (Cheese & Pea Cakes), Fenkata (a traditional Rabbit meal—the national meat of Malta), Twisties (a favorite Maltese snack). Travel agents interested in booking or inquiring about U.S. travel to Malta can call Air Malta toll-free and ask for either Marc Stafrace or Valerie Jobst. Air Malta, 866-357-4155,; The Malta Guide, • Travel World News

M E D I T E R R A N E A N RESOURCE Aegean & Mediterranean Warm. Radiant. Ancient. Modern. Let us take you there. A tour operator providing travel services to Malta & Gozo, Sicily, Italy, Romania, Tunisia and Libya. “From Concept to Completion” our pledge is that we shall execute any travel requested: from a unique honeymoon, to the ultimate exclusive relaxing experience, we have the capabilities of putting it together.

AEGEAN MEDITERRANEAN CRUISES & TOURS is a leading tour operator catering to travellers heading to Greece, Italy, Spain, Turkey, Egypt, Jordan, Israel and Morocco. With over thirty years of experience, Aegean has turned vacations into lasting memories.


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Egypt offers you their most precious treasure: THE SUN


Goway has expanded its offering of Egypt, Jordan and Israel, three countries with amazing contrasts as well as spectacular highlights, in its Middle East Treasures, a 22-day tour from North America. Highlights in Egypt include the Pyramids and the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, a Nile Cruise, a visit to Abu Simbel and a visit to the unique scenery of the Sinai Peninsula including the famous St. Catherine’s Monastery. New is a stopover for two nights in the Red Sea resort of Sharm El Sheikh to give passengers a refreshingly different experience. In Jordan, there is a Jeep tour of Wadi Rum and a full day at Petra plus visits to the Dead Sea, the ancient Roman site of Jerash and a stop in the capital, Amman. Israel offers Jerusalem including a viewing of the Dead Sea Scrolls, a side trip to Bethlehem, time to float in the Dead Sea, and a visit to the ancient site of Massada, a visit to a Kibbutz, a cruise on Lake Galilee plus Nazareth, Haifa and Tel Aviv. As always, Goway includes its trademark inclusions such as Exclusive Fun Themes including Food and Wine, Geography and History, Lifestyles and Local Culture; all tipping (except the Tour Director); a quality Travel Companion booklet with a wealth of destination information provided before departure; a souvenir group photograph at the end of the tour and a single share option. The maximum size of any group is 20 passengers. With top tour directors, the trip is one of the Holidays of a Lifetime series. Prices are from $8,629 per person from New York. Prices from other US cities are available on request. Goway’s Africa and Middle East brochure is available online or by toll-free phone request. Goway Travel, 800-387-8850, (brochure),

BESTWAY TOURS & SAFARIS PRESENT ANCIENT EGYPT WITH EAST AFRICAN SAFARI Ancient Egypt With East African Safari is a cultural tour of Egypt along with a safari in Kenya and Tanzania now being offered by Bestway Tours & Safaris. This is an artistically designed journey combining the best of the ancient and medieval heritage of Egypt with the natural animal wonders of Kenya and Tanzania. With 5,000 years of human achievements enshrined in the Pyramids, Sphinx, and Luxor Temples to the medieval marvels of Islamic Cairo with its citadels, mosques, parks and exotic bazaars, 20 • FEBRUARY 2011

the trip is full of enchantment. The tour also includes an exciting four-day deluxe Nile cruise. Leaving the hustle and bustle of Egypt, adventurers travel to the world of the animal kingdom in its native and natural environment. The 12-day Kenya-Tanzania safari takes them to some of the world’s most sought-after game parks like the Masai Mara, the Amboseli, Serengeti, Nogorongoro, Manyara where they can trace the Big Five among other species. The safari also visits a Masai village where guests can experience the life of this unique warrior tribe. Tour and safari specialists, Bestway Tours & Safaris have developed this unique 22-day journey for small groups. The maximum group size is limited to seven persons with five departures in the year. Bestway Tours & Safaris, 800-663-0844,

THE BEST OF TURKEY FOR $1,799 WITH FRIENDLY PLANET TRAVEL Friendly Planet Travel’s 14-day Best of Turkey tour, starting at just $1,799, visits the country known as the crossroads of Asia and Europe, where scores of empires, dynasties, and civilizations have risen and fallen for centuries. The price includes roundtrip, nonstop flights from New York (JFK) via Turkish Airlines (including fuel surcharges); arrival and departure transfers with meeting, assistance, and porterage; intra-Turkey transportation; accommodations in superior hotels; 22 meals; a comprehensive touring program including entrance fees; and a professional, English-speaking tour guide. The tour begins in Istanbul with a visit to the Sultanahmet Mosque, also known as the Blue Mosque for the tiles adorning its interior walls. Later, visitors roam the Grand Bazaar built in 1461, one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world with 1,200 stores. They will next stroll the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations in Ankara, Turkey’s capital. The museum holds Anatolian artifacts including Assyrian trading colonies, Hittite, Hellenistic, Roman Byzantine, and Ottoman periods. Tourists will get to know Cappadocia, famous for natural rock formations and underground cities. Afterwards, they head south to the coastal cliffs of the Mediterranean Sea to Antalya. On arrival they can take a tour to Aspendos; its magnificent ancient Roman theater is famed for its perfect acoustics. Departing the coast for Pamukkale (“cotton castle” in Turkish), guests will see hot springs and terraces of carbonate minerals left by flowing water. After a night in the town, they leave for Kusadasi on the Aegean coast. Here it’s a short drive to Ephesus to see the Temple of Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World and the second most well-preserved ancient site. It’s also home to the largest collection of Roman ruins in the eastern Mediterranean. Travelers will make their way back to Istanbul stopping in Pergamon, a powerful kingdom during the Hellenistic period, and then Asklepion, a famed ancient medical center built in honor of Asklepios, the god of healing. Before crossing the Dardanelles for Istanbul, they’ll take in the ancient city of Troy, the focus of the Trojan Wars as described in the epic poem by Homer. Friendly Planet Travel, • Travel World News

CARIBBEAN JOHN ISSA, CHAIRMAN OF SUPERCLUBS, HONORED AS A TOP HOTEL CARIBBEAN ENTREPRENEUR Hon. John Issa, chairman of SuperClubs Resorts, was awarded a 2010 “Excelencias Award” by the Madrid, Spain-based Excelencias Group, which specializes in communication products and services in the travel and tourism industry. The award recognizes Mr. Issa as the “hotel entrepreneur with the most advanced and innovative ideas in the Caribbean.” JOHN ISSA “I am honored to receive this recognition,” said Hon. John Issa, chairman of SuperClubs Resorts. “A leader is only as good as his team and mine has helped me successfully build the SuperClubs family of brands to this ‘excellent’ level. We look forward to continuing to not just meet but exceed our guests’ expectations at our resorts.” Created in 2005, the annual “Excelencias Awards” promote excellence in tourism and culture-related fields. In 2010, a new “Excelencias Special Awards” category was established to honor top enterprises, institutions and people in the industry. The awards were presented January 19 at the International Tourism Fair (FITUR) in Madrid. SuperClubs, the world’s only Super-Inclusive resort group, includes properties in the following brand categories: Breezes Resorts—Breezes Grand Resort & Spa Negril, Breezes Rio Bueno Resort & Spa, Breezes Runaway Bay Resort & Golf Club and Breezes Resort & Spa Trelawny in Jamaica; Breezes Bahamas; Breezes Curaçao Resort, Spa & Casino; Breezes Panama; Breezes Búzios Resort & Spa in Brazil; and Hedonism II in Negril and SuperFun Beach Resort & Spa in Runaway Bay, both in Jamaica. SuperClubs, 800-GO-SUPER (467-8737),

MALLIOUHANA HOTEL & SPA OFFERS WINTER DAILY FB CREDIT AND STAY 7 FOR 6 Travelers who escape to Anguilla’s Malliouhana Hotel & Spa this winter will enjoy warmth, beautiful seashore, fine dining and much more. Travel through March 31 earns a seventh night free (pay for six nights) plus a $150 food and beverage credit per room per day. The luxurious oceanview double room (single or double occupancy) is priced at $7,740 for the minimum seven-night stay (10-percent government tax and 10-percent service charge included). Also included in the price are welcome greeting at the airport/ferry terminal, a welcome bottle of wine served with petit fours, and all usual amenities and services offered by the hotel. For those wishing to relax a little longer, all paid stays of [minimum] three nights earn an added night free until March 31. The Travel World News •

oceanview double room accommodation is priced at $3,870 with government tax and service charge included. Additional inclusions are the welcome greeting at the airport/ferry terminal and all the usual amenities and services offered by the hotel. The pay-for-three/book four program is available for minimum four-night bookings, single or double occupancy, through March 31. Guests will experience extraordinary dining at the hotel’s awardwining restaurant, and soothing spa treatments in its state-of-theart Oasis Spa. Malliouhana Hotel & Spa has received a great number of prestigious industry awards, most recently for both 2010 and 2011 Condé Nast Traveller’s (UK) Gold List Best Hotel for food in the Caribbean, as well as having been being named to the prized Travel and Leisure 500 World’s Best Hotels and Modern Bride the World’s 50 Best Honeymoons. It has attained Condé Nast Traveler’s Gold List many times, and its vast wine cellar has garnered numerous Wine Spectator Grand Awards. Malliouhana Hotel & Spa,

ALL-INCLUSIVE NOW AVAILABLE AT ANGUILLA’S BIRD OF PARADISE Anguilla’s Bird of Paradise villa, named in January as one of the top 20 villas in the world by Ocean Home Magazine, now offers as an option a chef with the cost of food included. Executive Chef Zoe Tise Hodge comes to Anguilla after living in France for 10 years and owning a San Francisco catering service. She offers an extensive menu that includes Mediterranean, Thai, French, Italian, Caribbean and Vegetarian. She also offers kosher meals. The Bird of Paradise rates ($1,899 to $3,299) include a daily continental breakfast and exclusive use of the villa and its four master suites. An office can be set up as a fifth bedroom. There are four dining areas at the Bird of Paradise. Guests may choose dining on the verandah overlooking the Caribbean, under the stars in front of a fire in the exterior living area or by the glow of the one of the lagoon-style pools. In addition to Chef Zoe, the optional all-inclusive plan includes the cost of food, all purveying for guest groceries and bar, as well as server(s). Two packages are being offered, but others could be customized on request. Costs are as low as $68 pp per meal for the executive chef and prix fixe menus. The first package is one lunch and two dinners. The cost ranges from $610 for two people to $1,800 for eight guests. The second package is three lunches and four dinners, which is $970 for two people and $3,850 for eight. The “Bird” will work with agents to put together a package that fits within a client’s budget. They offer anything from the basic villa, to a villa with continental breakfast and daily housekeeping, to a villa that has a chef and butler and in-villa spa treatments. Bird of Paradise,, FEBRUARY 2011•



Hyatt Regency Trinidad will host its first ever Carnival fete called Lime on March 2, 2011. In collaboration with Pollen Nation Events, a company headed by Trinidadian-born Collin Abraham, Lime is an all-inclusive fete that will be held on Carnival Wednesday and will include exquisite cuisine prepared by expert chefs as well as a premium bar, mixed, frozen and novelty drinks. Fete lovers can party all night long to the music of the great David Rudder and Charlie’s Roots, Kees the Band featuring Nadia Batson and Karma. According to Abraham, “having worked on some of the biggest celebrity events in the entertainment industry today, the high quality and service levels at Hyatt Regency Trinidad made it a natural fit for us to work together on Lime.” Abraham includes among his celebrity events Jay-Z and Beyonce’s wedding, the inauguration of President Barack Obama and countless other celebrations. Tickets will be available only online. Hyatt Regency Trinidad, 800-233-1234,; (tickets)

JUST $899 TO EXPERIENCE MARTINIQUE WITH FRENCH LESSONS IN MARCH The Martinique Promotion Bureau/CMT USA has teamed with the French Institute Alliance Française (FIAF) to launch a new full-immersion language learning package, offering travelers the opportunity to learn French while experiencing the best of Martinique. Slated for March 15–20, the new package is priced at just $899 ppdo and includes five nights at the exquisite MGallery Bakoua hotel in Trois-Ilets; 12 hours of French conversation classes led by a bilingual instructor/tour guide; five complimentary meals; a full-day catamaran excursion; and guided excursions to La Pagerie Museum (birthplace of Empress Joséphine), Fort-de- France, and the Depaz rum distillery. The package rate is based on a minimum of 10 participants. 22 • FEBRUARY 2011

Airfare and some meals are not included. The lesson plan features a mix of in-classroom sessions held at the host hotel, the MGallery Bakoua, and guided excursions to cultural and historic points of interest throughout the island. Excursions are planned in line with each day’s classroom session, reinforcing lectures by showcasing the best of Martinique’s museums, rhum distilleries, sailing, beaches and more. “There’s a strong demand for French language immersion classes in sunny destinations like Martinique, especially during the winter months,” said Muriel Wiltord, Director, Americas for the Martinique Promotion Bureau/CMT USA. “Much more than a pretty place to learn, Martinique is recognized for its strong cultural assets and rich history. This immersion program unites all of this to create a truly unique educational travel experience.” Bookings for the new language immersion package in Martinique must be made by February 25, 2011. FIAF (French Institute Alliance Française),; Martinique Promotion Bureau/CMT USA,

AQUANAUTS GRENADA OFFERS TWO ISLANDS IN ONE HOLIDAY Aquanauts Grenada and Lumbadive Carriacou have teamed up to provide dive travelers with a two-island experience in a seven-day vacation. “In Carriacou, you are surrounded by greenery and native wildlife for an adventurer’s vacation above and below the surface. No mass tourism, no industries, no pollution, but sublime diving.” says Richard, owner of Lumbadive Carriacou. Grenada has the airport with nonstop services from Miami, New York, London, Frankfurt and Toronto. A daily ferry service is convenient for divers, as they do not have to interrupt their dive package for traveling between the two islands. Grenada boasts a great variety of wreck diving and a lush interior. Accommodation partner in Grenada is True Blue Bay Resort, while in Carriacou travelers have the choice between Grand View Inn and Villa Longevue. A typical itinerary starts with three nights and five boat dives in Grenada. On the fourth morning, it’s time to pack up and enjoy the two-hour ferry ride up the west coast of Grenada and past the area of Isle de Rhonde to Carriacou. A transfer brings the diver to the chosen lodging. The next three days are spent diving “the island of the reefs”—the translation for Carriacou—with Lumbadive. On the last day, the afternoon ferry brings guests back to Grenada for one more night at True Blue Bay Resort before next morning’s departure. Conveniently the resort is only 10 minutes from the airport. A seven-night package including 10 boat dives and all transfers starts at $1,350 for the summer period, 2011. Customized packages are also available.Packages can be booked securely online. Aquanauts Grenada,, p-4-Grenada-Carriacou-2-island-holiday.aspx (booking),; Lumbadive, • Travel World News


RESOURCE DIRECTORY The fabulous view is of the Caribbean Sea and famous Buccoo Reef.

Princess Hotels & Resorts is a hotel chain specializing in holiday and urban hotels in top class tourist resorts, which, from the start, has enjoyed the prestige, confidence and consideration of our customers. A chain with a business philosophy and methodology in the management of large hotels.

Please contact us for tailor-maid packages

Visit Us Once, You'll Want to Stay Forever The unspoiled beauty, wonderful waters and welcoming people of the Turks and Caicos have made the islands an international destination.

Luxury beachfront villas for the most discriminating traveler

Overlooking the Caribbean Sea on one of the most beautiful beaches in Barbados, the resort sits amid tropical gardens edged by white sand beaches.

A secluded enclave comprised of three villas, situated on a different elevation and surrounded by lush landscaping for maximum privacy, yet angled to maximize views of the breathtaking Sir Francis Drake Channel.

“Most Romantic Resort in the World” TripAdvisor’s Travelers’ Choice, 4th consecutive year

Gingerbread cottages nestled in sheltered gardens...all uniquely decorated w ith antiques and furnished w ith comfortable canopy beds. Located on one of the Caribbean’s top 10 "Dream Beaches of the World", the sophisticated and stylish Bucuti and Tara Beach Suites offer Aruba's only refined and tranquil boutique resort experience. Exchange your vows on our magnificent white sandy beach. Let us make your honeymoon a celebration that you will cherish for a lifetime...

The jewel of Grenada’s paradise. This charming mini resort is the perfect holiday destination for families, groups, wedding parties, couples and singles.

Private porches and lazy hammocks catch the pure ocean breeze coming off the sea and dow n the rainforest mountain sloops.

The rooms will relax you – the air will rejuvenate you.

a ‘Just what the doctor ordered’ locale


offers a wedding dinner at The Terrace restaurant with wedding cake and champagne for $2,650 for two. “Elope to Paradise” includes the packages’ shared features for up to six guests, starting at $1,350 for two. All packages are valid through December 16, 2011, and do not include accommodations or airfare. Restrictions apply, and prices are subject to change without notice. The Buccaneer, 800-255-3881,


Tying the knot is a piece of cake at St. Croix’s Buccaneer resort, where wedding packages feature elaborate family affairs, romantic couples-only elopements, and—new for 2011—festive “jump the broom” rites of passage, a modern interpretation of an ancient African tradition. The resort’s four wedding packages for 2011 share the following features: a wedding location at the resort’s restored 17th century sugar mill or its palm-lined beach; the services of a personal wedding planner and non-denominational minister (if required); services of a photographer and selection of 40 images plus CD; his and hers Buccaneer bathrobes; his and her massages; bride’s bouquet and groom’s boutonniere; his and hers sterling “hook” bracelets, and welcome basket of champagne, fruit, cheese, and chocolate. New for 2011, couples at The Buccaneer can enhance their ceremonies with a “Jump the Broom” ritual, based on a centuries-old African tradition of jumping over a gaily-decorated broom as a symbol of entering a new life together with a clean sweep. “Jump the Broom” includes a traditional invocation and a one-of-a-kind wedding broom designed by an artist exclusively for the couple, and is priced at $500 as an add-on. The all-inclusive “Hibiscus” package enhances the four packages’ shared features with a reception at The Buccaneer’s Brass Parrot restaurant; musical entertainment for the wedding and reception, and a morning-after breakfast for hotel guests with mimosas and Bloody Marys. “Hibiscus” begins at $8,100 for a minimum of 20 adults, not including accommodations. The Buccaneer’s three additional wedding packages offer the shared features as well as unique attractions. The “Sugar Mill” package includes a beach wedding followed by dinner for up to 12 people in the restored 17th-century sugar mill overlooking the sea, for $5,500 for 12 people. The “Bougainvillea” for two to 19 guests 24 • FEBRUARY 2011

Visitors can escape the chilly temperatures or rainy early spring days, warm up in the US Virgin Islands and save at Bolongo Bay Beach Resort. The laid-back St. Thomas beach resort is offering savings of up to 25 percent on travel between now and April 30, 2011. Available on all stays of five nights or more, Bolongo Bay’s Warm Up sale features 25 percent off all beachfront and oceanview rooms plus a complimentary sail on the resort’s 53’ catamaran. Travelers who want it all can save 20 percent on Bolongo’s popular All Inclusive plan, including dining a la carte with lobster and filet as well as premium cocktails. In addition, All Inclusive guests will receive two complimentary sails—a Swim with Turtles and Sunset Cocktail cruise. Daily rates with the discount begin at $258.75 for two people in an Oceanview room. Daily All Inclusive rates with the discount begin at $505.60 for two in an Oceanview room. Rates are subject to tax, service charge and energy surcharge. Blackout dates may apply. All guests receive a complimentary discover scuba dive lesson as well as unlimited access to non-motorized water sports equipment including Hobie Cats, windsurfers, kayaks, snorkel gear, paddle boats and more. From sailing, diving, snorkeling and a “snorkel booze hunt” during the day to dancing at night, there’s always something to do at Bolongo Bay. It’s easy to escape to the US Virgin Islands. No passports are needed for US citizens and there are many direct flights available to St. Thomas. Booking for Bolongo Bay’s Warm Up sale can be made by calling their toll-free number. Bolongo Bay Beach Resort, 800-524-4746,

BAHAMAS STUART COVE’S OFFERS BAHAMAS DIVE PACKAGE FROM $602 Now through April 28, 2011, adventurers can dive with Stuart Cove’s and see the best of the Bahamas at an unbelievable price. Dive Nassau includes three days of world-class diving and accommodations for five days/four nights at Orange Hill Resort Inn and is priced from just $602 per person. The morning dives are two-tank dives including tanks and weights. Taxes and gratuities are not included. The offer is subject to availability and blackout dates. Terms and conditions apply. Stuart Cove’s Dive Bahamas, 800-879-9832,, • Travel World News


choice for families traveling together, is only $195 per night. All prices include full breakfast each morning. Flamingo Hotel is a 22-room boutique hotel with tastefully decorated accommodations and a cozy bar in their center courtyard. Located in the cultural heart of Cozumel, it is just steps away from the waterfront and the dining and shopping attractions of the town square. The Flamingo’s appeal is enhanced by a high level of guest service. Scuba diving, horseback riding, snorkeling, sailing, parasailing, fishing and tours of Mayan ruins are also available for booking by Flamingo’s English-speaking staff. Flamingo Hotel, 800-806-1601,,

It’s called Mardi Gras in New Orleans and Carnaval in Rio de Janiero—and also on the tiny island paradise six miles across the bay from Cancun, Isla Mujeres, where it’s set to take place next month, March 4–8. With five nights of music, dancing, parades, contests and fun for islanders and visitors alike, Carnaval is a homemade celebration on the island of fishermen. Community groups like teachers, taxi drivers and school children participate, including a group of older women called “Las Abuelitas”—The Grandmothers. Each group designs its own elaborate costumes and practices its dance routines for months in preparation for the extravaganza. When the fun of Carnaval begins it never stops, so travelers should make plans immediately to join in the joy of this special time. Isla Mujeres offers the best of the Caribbean lifestyle, with white sand beaches, crystal clear turquoise waters and accommodations and restaurants for all budgets and tastes. It’s always a great time to visit Isla Mujeres, the island gem of Mexico, and there’s never a better time than during Carnaval in this paradise. Isla Mujeres Tourism Board,,


FLAMINGO HOTEL COZUMEL FLOATING IN CARNIVAL Flamingo Hotel is welcoming all guests to join in the revelry this year on their “Welcome to the Jungle”-themed Carnival float. Cozumel’s annual Carnival (Mardi Gras in the US) officially begins Wednesday, March 2, and ends Wednesday, March 9. Seafront parades featuring floats and marching troupes decked out in sequins and feathers will be held on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, March 6–8, culminating with the most dazzling parade marking the end of Carnival on “Fat Tuesday,” March 8, when the party will continue into the night with street dancing and live bands. In support of Carnival, Flamingo Hotel is inviting guests to dress in jungle-themed costumes, and to shower spectators with beads and gifts from their “Welcome to the Jungle” Carnival float in all three Carnival parades, free of charge. Whether joining as a participant or observer, Flamingo Hotel is offering all guests the fourth night free for any stays March 1–12. Courtyard rooms are $79 per night, Superior rooms $91 per night and the Penthouse Villa, an ideal 26 • FEBRUARY 2011

This Valentine’s Day, couples can rekindle their love at Sandos Caracol Eco Resort & Spa with an intimate Romantic Trip through one of the property’s 16 natural cenotes as well as a free Romantic Package for couples booking Select Club accommodations. Whether seeking a holiday in the Riviera Maya or a great gift for a significant other, Sandos Caracol conveniently offers these packages year-round. On the Romantic Trip, couples board a canoe with a personal captain and enjoy riding through the natural waterways surrounded by mangroves and lush fauna. The boat ride is part of an all-inclusive vacation and reservations must be made in advance at the hotel’s front desk. For those seeking a romantic vacation experience, Sandos Caracol Eco Resort & Spa offers Select Club accommodations in a private area within the 65-acre resort and include Sandos Select Club Standard, Select Club Deluxe and Select Club Junior Suites. Guests in these accommodations enjoy a free Romantic Package that includes a toast in the privacy of the room each evening, dinner for two in an a la carte restaurant with VIP service and a special menu (requires reservation at Concierge desk), an aromatherapy gift set, 15percent spa discount throughout the stay on treatments in the new spa facility, 10-percent discount on motorized sports including banana boat rides, jet skiing and parasailing, as well as a framed photo of the couple. The Romantic Package must be added at time of booking. All-inclusive rates start as low as $146 ppdo per night for travel through February and March in a standard room. Guests can upgrade to Select Club accommodations for approximately $20 per night to receive additional in-room and onsite amenities including guaranteed reservations at specialty restaurants, private check-in and late checkout (subject to availability), 24-hour room service and in-room amenities. To maintain their commitment to five-star service with eco-friendly practices, Sandos Hotel Group has appointed Efrain Rios Castillo as Corporate Director of Environment and Sustainable Development of all their Riviera Maya hotels. With wide experience and background in environmental studies, Castillo was an independent consultant for Sandos Caracol Eco Resort & Spa before his appointment. Sandos Hotels & Resorts, 866-336-4083, • Travel World News


Casa Santo Domingo â&#x20AC;&#x201C; each corner of this house, each stone, each image and each piece that composes this unequalled whole of works becomes a lost page in time, which one one is joined forming a beautiful chapter of the grand book of our history.

KAKAW & SAPPHIRE is a full service destination & event management company specializing in the art of Incentive and Group Travel. Unforgettable and unique private journeys and events throughout Guatemala, Belize, Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama. Let us take care of those details that set each incentive and group journey apart.

We design our tours with your clients in mind and we will help you choose the one that best suits interests and levels of adventure.

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We are 100% Guatamala

Surrender to the Beauty of our Beach Retreat PALMETTO BAY PLANTATION is an eco-sensitive Honduras resort surrounded by dozens of world-class dive sites, all within a 20-minute boat ride, that offers comprehensive dive packages for all levels of divers.


We are driven by the satisfaction of offering excellence in our services as well as the competitive quality of our products. We are committed to the protection of the environment in the development of our events and to adhere to the responsibility of promoting the wonders of our country through our work.

Maya Temple Tours is an incoming Tour Operator that specializes in customized and fully escorted trips within Honduras and the Maya World.

www .mayatempletours. com Tours Nicaragua exists to share the beauty of Nicaragua and to make a visit to Nicaragua hassle free, interesting, safe and rewarding.


Tara Tours’ passengers Lani Lathan-Reid and Gerald Frederick who were booked by Robin Cochran of CWT Vacations in Charlotte, North Carolina, were recognized as the one millionth tourist to visit Nicaragua in 2010. On their arrival in Managua, December 28, 2010, they were greeted at the airport by Arq. Mario Salinas, Minister of Tourism; Lucy Valenti, President of Gray Line Nicaragua and President of the Camara Nacional de Turismo; Juan Sequeira, Sales Manager, American Airlines; and Elienne Etienne, Sales Manager, Holiday Inn. Lathan-Reid and Frederick were presented with a certificate and a complimentary return trip including airfare from their hometown to Nicaragua via American Airlines, with hotels and transfers. Tara Tours, 800-327-0080,,

TARA TOURS OFFERS NICARAGUA GIVEAWAY Tara Tours has announced the release of a new program to Nicaragua called “Colonial Cities & Beach.” The program, priced at just $1,294 including airfare from Miami (with add-ons available from more than 80 US cities) will spend seven days/six nights in Mangua, Granada and Montelimar. The tour package includes airfare with American Airlines from Miami; three nights in Managua at new Hotel Holiday Inn (fivestar) with daily breakfast; a city tour of Managua with an Englishspeaking guide; a full day excursion to Granada including lunch; three nights Montelimar, an all-inclusive beach resort (with all meals and drinks); and hotel taxes and service charges. Not included in the price are insurance, airport departure taxes (from USA $88–140, from Nicaragua $18), and any other service not specifically listed here. Tara Tours, 800-327-0080,, 28 • FEBRUARY 2011

RADISSON FORT GEORGE HOTEL AND MARINA’S RENOVATION NOW COMPLETE At the end of last year, the Radisson Fort George Hotel and Marina announced its completion on all planned renovations. The hotel underwent a $160,000 renovation at the beginning of June 2010 that included refurbishing Baymen’s Tavern, St. George’s Restaurant, Le Petit Café, Business Center, Santa Rita Room, VIP Room, and the Club Tower Elevator. “Radisson is focused on delivering the highest quality product and services for all our guests and now with the renovations being completed it further supports our brand commitment to be the premier leader in class and guest satisfaction,” said James Scott, CEO of the Radisson. The Baymen’s Tavern Bar & St. George’s Restaurant were redesigned with a more modern, relaxed ambience, keeping the panoramic view of the Caribbean Sea. The Le Petit Café was expanded to better serve customers. As for the Santa Rita and VIP meeting rooms, these were given an attractive facelift that offers a more contemporary look. Finally, the Business Center was relocated in the main lobby allowing the opportunity to better serve and assist guests. Radisson Fort George Hotel,

CHABIL MAR RESORT ANNOUNCES NEW BELIZE VACATION PACKAGES Chabil Mar Resort, the only guest-exclusive resort in Placencia Village, has four new Belize vacation packages. All focus on the Caribbean Sea and were designed to take full advantage of the unique array of offshore islands, the world’s second longest barrier reef and abundant marine life. Taking to the open water is considered a “must-do” when visiting Belize. Three packages are dive-related with dive sites that feature the Blue Hole (a lava tube nearly 1,000 feet across and over 400 feet deep), two marine reserves, and a natural World Heritage Site. The fourth package allows guests to enjoy the sea from a different perspective—aboard a private 42–foot catamaran with a professional captain, crew and certified tour guide. This uniquely Belizean package features both sea and land adventures. Chabil Mar is a boutique luxury resort on a slice of heaven in Belize known as Placencia. Pristine, unspoiled and perfectly situated on one of the most beautiful white sand beaches in the Caribbean, Chabil Mar offers luxury accommodations in a laidback landscape: sophistication and service in a seaside locale. Detailed information on the four-night/seven-night Dive into the Blue Packages, Dive Placencia Package or Adventure & Island Sailing Package is available under the “Packages & Specials” tab of their website. Chabil Mar Resort, • Travel World News


Chaa Creek owner and General Manager Lucy Fleming commented. “Our staff members are all very proud, and rightly so, that we received a 92.6 rating for service,” she added. Chaa Creek employs some 135 staff members on the 365 acre private nature reserve which includes the rainforest resort and 23 rooms, a Macal River Camp, restaurant, bar, Natural History Centre, Spa, stables, canoes and equipment for a wide range of adventure based activities. “I think what this really shows is how much we all love what we do, and that it’s reflected in our service, tours and activities.” Fleming concluded. The resort also received an 88.5 rating for activities. This is the third year running that The Lodge at Chaa Creek has been featured in the Gold List, having received similar praise in 2008 and 2009. The Lodge at Chaa Creek,,

San Ignacio Hotel in Belize is celebrating 35 years in business, and to offer clients a chance to benefit from this milestone, the hotel has designed a number of special offers that will be available from May 1 until mid-December this year. Details are available by going to the home site and hitting the special ‘Hot Button’ marked 35 years. This button is active as of January 31, and includes specials and travel trade incentives. As a special offer to agents, throughout April they can have their clients dine with the hotel’s compliments. This offer is valid for double occupancy bookings of three- to seven-night maximum in the hotel’s Balcony Deluxe or Regal rooms. Clients will enjoy a free three-course dinner every night for three nights, a $210 value. Balcony Deluxe/Regal Rooms are $200 plus taxes per night. Reference to use when booking is: “Dine on us.” San Ignacio Hotel,,


CHAA CREEK MAKES CONDÉ NAST GOLD LIST FOR 2010 The Lodge at Chaa Creek ended the year on a high note and with another award after recently being acknowledged as one of the world’s finest destinations, according to the prestigious Condé Nast Traveler Gold List for 2010. The list compiles “the best places to stay in the world” as chosen by Condé Nast readers from the magazine’s annual Readers’ Choice Survey. Inclusion in the Gold list is determined by data collected from the survey, a minimum number of responses and an assessment of comments. Chaa Creek, the only Belizean resort to make the list, received an overall score of 87.6 out of one hundred compiled from categories such as rooms, service, food, location, design and activities. “When you consider the sophistication of Condé Nast’s international readership and the caliber of hotels and resorts from around the world vying for inclusion in this list, we are very pleased, and very grateful to our guests who took the time to enter us in the survey,” Travel World News •

Parador Resort & Spa ended 2010 with a slew of prestigious awards and a literal bang as its dazzling New Year’s Eve fireworks lighted the sky, ringing out another banner year for the oceanview property. After five consecutive years of earning commendations from the influential World Travel Awards (WTA), Parador was most recently named Costa Rica’s Leading Resort 2010 at a ceremony honoring the most esteemed properties and tourism businesses in the Americas. This tribute follows its 2009 win as Leading Hotel/Mexico & Central America. Established 17 years ago to raise the standards of customer service throughout the international industry, the World Travel Awards are determined by a polling process that invites votes from over 170,000 travel agents, tourism and hospitality professionals around the world. This past year, Parador Resort & Spa was also honored with the Costa Rican Tourism Board’s (ICT) highest Five Leaf Sustainability Award in recognition of its dedicated compliance to strict environmental guidelines dictated by the organization’s Certification for Sustainable Tourism Program (CST). Parador was one of only ten establishments granted the exclusive Five Leaf rating by Costa Rica’s Minister of Tourism Carlos Ricardo Benavides at the annual ceremony that took place December 9, 2010, in San Jose’s InBio Park. Parador Vice President Diego F. Gonzalez Monge and Sales Director Allan Ortega were on hand to receive the top accolade, joining representatives from many of the other 181 Costa Rican touristoriented companies that were also certified (22 for the first time). The impressive number of honorees in 2010 indicates the ongoing commitment among government and private industry to protect and respect Costa Rica’s fragile and fecund ecosystem. Parador Resort & Spa,, FEBRUARY 2011 •



Chan Chich Lodge is located on a 133,000-acre private nature reserve in northwestern Belize at the heart of “La Selva Maya.” Situated in the plaza of an ancient Maya city and surrounded by pristine forest, the lodge consists of 12 individual thatched-roof cabanas and one beautifully appointed two-bedroom villa with a screened-in pool, Jacuzzi and fully stocked bar. Visitors will enjoy unforgettable flora, fauna and Maya history unique to this tropical paradise. With an unparalleled abundance of wildlife (and the best chance to see the elusive jaguar in its natural habitat), Chan Chich is ideal for naturalists, birders and those seeking an authentic jungle retreat. The Lodge has an extensive trail system of over nine miles of wellmaintained trails for hiking and exploring. Directional signs are numerous and trail maps can be provided for unaccompanied wandering if desired, or travelers may sign up for a guided tour with knowledgeable local guides. Vehicle tours are offered to various locations throughout the area (day and night). These include the wetland habitat at Laguna Seca, Laguna Verde, the upper Escarpment, Sylvester Village, and tours of the Gallon Jug farm, in particular the coffee plantation and production processes. Day trips are offered to La Milpa, a Mayan site located in the Rio Bravo Conservation Area run by Programme for Belize, and to the significant ruins at Lamanai, the second largest Mayan site in Belize. The Lamanai transfer may be done by road or with a spectacular one-hour boat ride down the New River from Orange Walk—the Lodge’s most popular external trip. There’s a stable of horses at Gallon Jug for one-, two- or threehour guided rides along jungle trails and/or to remote Mayan sites. Canoeing is offered on Laguna Verde, a natural spring-fed lake around four miles north of the Gallon Jug farm, where it’s not uncommon to come face-to-face with turtles, birds and even crocodiles. Chan Chich Lodge,,

EXTREME LOBBY MAKEOVER AT LA MANSION INN At Costa Rica’s La Mansion Inn, it doesn’t matter how well they’ve done something in the past or how well they might do it today—the 30 • FEBRUARY 2011

goal is to continually improve. With that in mind, the deluxe hotel has announced the grand opening of their renewed, luxurious lobby. Shifting from the previous Old World Charm design, this bright new lobby gives the elegant appearance of modern design. La Mansion Inn’s lush charm extends beyond the lobby and into well-appointed guest rooms. Breathtaking views of the ocean, charming balconies, fine linens, and excellent guest service complement all of its Deluxe Guest Rooms, Penthouse Suites and Presidential Suite. Travelers are sure to experience timeless Costa Rican elegance with mahogany-colored furnishings and attention to details at La Mansion Inn. La Mansion Inn, 800-360-2071,,

BELIZERUS AT BLACK ORCHID RESORT, BELIZE Most people have heard of the famous store, ToysRus, but few would have heard of Black Orchid’s latest business venture BelizeRus, which is their rapidly developing tour company based out of the resort. With a fleet of cars, vans, 4x4s and even a 20-seater bus with a wheelchair lift, the resort is able to offer a rapidly growing selection of tours. This makes Black Orchid a fabulous base to explore the whole of Belize. Black Orchid’s seven-nights package, Best of Both Worlds, offers clients the opportunity to experience Belize’s north, east and west top tours without having to repack their bags. The package includes seven nights in a Garden-View room; complimentary airport transfers from/to the international airport; seven breakfasts/seven dinners; one each of the following full-day tours including lunch—Actun Tunichil Muknal (ATM) cave, Lamanai Maya Site, Jaguar Paw cave tubing and zip-lining; one half-day birdwatching tour at Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary or Community Baboon Sanctuary; half-day tours of both Belize City and the Belize Zoo; crocodile spotting at night on the Belize river; one full beach day at Spanish Lookout Caye with return land and boat transfers, lunch, use of kayaks and snorkeling gear and a Wildlife Encounter Tour; and one full-day Reef Diving or Snorkeling Tour to Shark Ray Alley and Hol Chan Marine Reserve including lunch. Package prices (ppdo) are as follows: Courtyard-view Room (summer) $1,385 and (winter) $1,525, River-view Room (summer) $1,450 and (winter) $1,590. Government taxes are not included in the price. Rates are rack and packages are fully commissionable. Tours may be traded out against other tours but supplement charges may apply. There will be no refunds or discounts for tours not taken. Black Orchid Resort rests along the banks of the historic Belize Old River on the outskirts of scenic Burrell Boom Village. The resort has 21 comfortably appointed rooms; restaurant, lounge, gift shop, pool and offers opportunities for canoeing, kayaking, paddle boating or a powerboat cruise up the river spotting birds, howler monkeys and iguanas along the way. Black Orchid Resort, • Travel World News



Ecuadorian Tours organizes and provides services to groups of tourists arriving to Ecuador, visiting Quito and Guayaquil the vast majority of today’s well known destinations such as Cuenca, Galapagos and the Jungle.

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Metropolitan Touring is building a new lodge in a private reserve protecting a piece of one of the world’s most important biodiversity hotspots in Ecuador. On the western slopes of the Andes over 3,000 ft. above sea level, Mashpi Lodge will receive its first guests in October 2011. Powered entirely by its own hydroelectricity and adhering to the highest environmental standards, the lodge has 22 suites. Three “Yaku” suites (“water” in the Kichwa language) have their own Jacuzzis-with-a-view. Programs for three days/two nights are $1,552 ppdo, and $2,256 for four days/three nights. “Wayra” suites (“wind”) are two interconnecting pairs, with programs ranging from $1,296 ppdo (three-day/two-night option), and $1,870 for four days/three nights. The property includes a Jacuzzi with panoramic views and two massage rooms, and also an outdoor terrace area for taking in the forest. Cuisine is prepared from Ecuador’s rich cornucopia of fresh ingredients by Metropolitan Touring’s highly-experienced chefs. The upscale lodge makes the ideal springboard for adventure, with trails winding through the huge Reserve, numerous waterfalls and rivers, orchid gardens and a 1.25-mile aerial tram. The system includes four open gondolas, each with a capacity for six plus guide, allowing exploration of the forest canopy. Programs include all meals, guided visits (English and Spanish) to primary forest, aerial tram rides, specialized lectures, rain ponchos and rubber boots. The rate also includes transfers in/out (shared) from main hotels in Quito with a guide and driver, snack on the way in, entrance fees and visits to sights along the route, and lunch at El Crater Restaurant at the Pullulahua Crater rim on the trip out. Mashpi Lodge,; Metropolitan Touring,

LATIN TRAILS LAUNCHES NEW LUXURY CRUISE GALAPAGOS GRAND ODYSSEY This month, Latin Trails adds another luxury boat to their Odyssey liners and first-class Galapagos Journey Fleet. The new ship’s generous living areas, luxurious and comfortable environments, and impeccable service will make for stylish exploring in the unparalleled natural sanctuary of the Galapagos Islands. 32 • FEBRUARY 2011

M/Y Grand Odyssey has a capacity of 16 passengers, featuring seven spacious suites and one Master Suite all with panoramic windows, private bathrooms with hot/cold water, air conditioning with independent controls, minibar and television. Cabins are also adaptable to twin bed or to one faux king bed, with connected suites available as well, ideal for families. The Main Deck features a spacious and comfortable saloon, dining room areas, a bar and a mini library. Visitors enjoy an alfresco dining area and an open air bar along with two Jacuzzis and Balinese sun beds. The new luxury boat is complemented with a Spa area offering a complete massage and therapies menu. The vessel’s design meets high environmental standards, keeping its ecological footprint on this natural relic minimal, assuring the Galapagos Islands will continue dazzling future generations to come. The M/Y Grand Odyssey will navigate with the latest technology available, surpassing all necessary safety requirements. With over 20 year’s experience, Latin Trails specializes in custom tours for small groups or individuals, working with a professional crew that includes a certified naturalist English-speaking guide (available in various other languages as well). During 2011, the company will offer four-, five-, six-, eight-, 10-, 12- and 15-day tours that can be made in numerous combinations to adapt to every client’s specific needs. In this way, Latin Trails can offer more varied and complete itineraries so every single visitor leaves Ecuador entirely satisfied. Galapagos Grand Odyssey prices range from $3,400 to $4,080 for five-day tours to $10,500 to $12,600 for 15-day tours. Latin Trails,

HACIENDA CUSIN IN ECUADOR HAS NEW GUEST ROOMS AND SUITES Hacienda Cusin, the restored, 17th-century Andean estate at 8,500 ft in Ecuador, has announced some renovations to its facilities. Yapahuasi, a guest room wing opposite Reception, containing Serra 11–16, has been re-roofed and a corridor with white pasamanos added. The entrances to Sierra 12, 13, the Dueña’s Suite, 14, 15 and 16 have been extensively enlarged. Suite Pacari (Quechua, sunrise) has replaced Sierra 15 and Suite Cholan (a tree cascading with deep yellow blossoms) has replaced Sierra 16. All Yapahuasi’s guest rooms have access to a wide, cobblestone patio edged with traditional white pasamanos above landscaped gardens. Gardens on the far side of Yapahuasi have been relandscaped. Casa Imbabura and Casa Olana are now available for lease. These large, two-bedroom houses have spectacular Andean views. Casa Olana is named after Hudson River School artist, Frederic Church’s visits to the Ecuadorian Andes in 1853 and 1857. The 16,000-ft Imbabura Mountain commands the horizon. Hacienda Cusin,,,, • Travel World News


Austin-Lehman Adventures (ALA) has announced two options for exploring one of the world’s most iconic vacation destinations. Choices are by land or by sea for a Galapagos holiday, announced Dan Austin, owner of Austin-Lehman Adventures. The company engages Red Mangrove Galapagos and Ecuador Lodges for its landbased, island-hopping programs and for expedition cruising, the eco-sensitive, visionary small ship company, Ecoventura. “We’re thrilled that we can offer a choice of upscale, active vacation programs in this astonishing environment,” said Austin. “Bottom line for each option is that our travel partners practice the highest standards of sustainability on behalf of this region— without sacrificing the level of service and activity that our clients count on.” Each program runs eight days and seven nights with weekly departures throughout 2011. The Galapagos land-based option utilizes three intimate lodges on three islands and is priced from $3,016 per adult. Guests are motored by high-speed boat among the islands. On The “Galapagos by sea” option guests enjoy accommodations aboard a signature fleet of three identical 20-passenger luxury motor yachts that stop at choice islands by day and motor among them at night. Rates are from $3,375 per adult. Either option offers discounts of up to 30 percent for ages seven and up traveling with an adult. The all-inclusive adventures include double occupancy rooms with private baths, all meals, professional and first-aid certified guides, site-appropriate equipment such as snorkeling gear and sea kayaks, luggage service, vehicle support as required, and some taxes and gratuities. Not included are international and in-country air, park entrance fees, transit cards and optional pre/post lodging and tour packages. Austin noted that spring break 2011 is beginning to fill up and that families who want to introduce their youngsters to The Galapagos should solidify plans soon. The travel company’s 2011 catalog is available by calling toll-free or by email contact. Austin-Lehman Adventures, 800-575-1540,, Travel World News •

EARLY BIRD SPECIALS ON BELUGA GALAPAGOS WITH ENCHANTED EXPEDITIONS Enchanted Expeditions (formerly Angermeyer’s Enchanted Expeditions), has announced Early Bird Special pricing for specified cruises aboard the M/Y Beluga. A special price of $2,400 net including airfare to Galapagos from Quito or Guayaquil is available for the following departures in 2011: June 3–10; July 8–15, 15–22 and 22–29; and August 5–12. The Beluga is equipped with the most modern safety systems. The ship accommodates 16 passengers in eight double cabins (four lower/lower berths, two matrimonial beds and two lower/ lower berths—that can be joined to create matrimonial options). Cabin 1 has three beds (two lower and one upper bed), each with private bathrooms equipped with hot- and cold-water showers, fully air conditioned, spacious social areas with all the comfort and facilities of a deluxe motor yacht, and panoramic windows in the salon/dining area. Travelers can enjoy time on board on the spacious sun deck or relax in the shade on the top deck while cruising between islands. Additional details are available by contacting Monse or Wendy at the office. Enchanted Expeditions,,,

LLAMA EXPEDITIONS’ ADVENTURE VACATION LETS TRAVELERS MAKE A DIFFERENCE Travelers who crave an adventure off the beaten path have an exciting new option—with a philanthropic twist. Llama Expeditions offers a range of guided tours throughout Peru, from sightseeing tours to multi-day hikes along the Inca trail. In addition to taking in the stunning scenery and experiencing incredible adventure, these tours also allow travelers to make a personal connection to the country and its people. “The company fills the spot between responsible tourism and voluntourism,” said founder Diane Valenti. “This is a real vacation, for people who work hard and want a chance to relax. We stay in nice hotels and eat in good restaurants. But it’s also a chance for culturally curious travelers to make a meaningful connection with the people and the land of Peru.” One tour takes participants to a school that serves scholastically gifted children from rural communities in the Peruvian Andes. Travelers meet the children and have the opportunity to present them with gifts of school supplies—notebooks, pencil cases, and boxes of crayons, for example. “The kids’ faces light up,” said Valenti. “You get to see firsthand that you make a difference in their lives.” On another trip travelers will have the chance to interact with an organization that rescues street children and teaches them to surf to build their self-esteem and heal them physically and emotionally. Expeditions,, FEBRUARY 2011 •



travelers head towards the magical Island of Chiloé with a final destination in the city of Castro. There they’ll board the Mare Australis cruise ship with its comfortable and cozy cabins, to sail through the Patagonian fjords, where they will see part of the Northern Ice Fields and the magical San Rafael Glacier located in the Lagoon of the same name that was declared as a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve in 1979. After five days of enjoying pure untouched nature, guests disembark in Castro once again from which they will return to the city of Puerto Mont to end the adventure. Navimag Ferries,,


SATA, the South and Central America Travel Association’s 2010 Chairman of the Board Hermine Taramona of Tara Tours presented Raj Sanghrajka, President of Alluring Americas, the prestigious “Oscar Lobo Award” at its annual holiday celebration. The year’s venue was special indeed as it was held sailing the chartered elegant yacht Midnight Sun. This was possible due to gracious sponsorship by TAM Airlines. At this celebration SATA and its members support the Ronald McDonald House by donating Christmas gifts to ill children who are away from home during the season. The “Oscar Lobo Award” has been presented by SATA since 1994 to honor and recognize those who have an enthusiasm and passion for promoting Central and South America. Sanghrajka has conducted numerous travel seminars educating retail travel agents on the wonders of Central and South America. He has served SATA as Treasurer in 2004, Vice President in 2005, President in 2006 and 2007, Chairman of the Board in 2008 and 2009 and as a Board Advisor in 2010. The award reads “To Raj Sanghrajka for his heartfelt commitment to the promotion of tourism to South and Central America.” SATA,,

NAVIMAG, MARE AUSTRALIS AND LAGUNA SAN RAFAEL CREATE GREAT TRAVEL EXPERIENCE Recently, Navimag Ferries in Chile began operation of the Mare Australis on the Laguna San Rafael Route. Through February 24, the company, originally known for sailing ferries on the Patagonian Fjords, is planning to visit the LSR on board the well-known ship belonging to its sister company Cruceros Autralis. The adventure starts at the International Passenger Terminal located at the traditional quayside area in Angelmó, and then 34 • FEBRUARY 2011

Wyndham Hotels and Resorts, LLC, a subsidiary of Wyndham Worldwide Corporation, has announced its expansion in Central America with the opening of Wyndham Garden Hotel Panama City. The property, owned by Hoteles Boutique, S.A. and managed by FR Consulting Group, is the second Wyndham hotel in Panama City, joining the 301-room Veneto—A Wyndham Grand Hotel in Via Espana, Panama City’s banking and financial district. The new seven-story hotel is conveniently close to business, banking centers and tourist destinations, and just 12 miles from Tocumen International Airport. It is within walking distance of area restaurants and shopping, but located in a quiet area of the city lined with trees and luxurious homes. The lobby exudes style and convenience, featuring marble floors, modern furniture and complimentary high-speed wireless Internet access. Guests can start their day by taking advantage of coffee service each morning and utilizing the shoe-shining station. The hotel’s multi-lingual staff provides guests with concierge services throughout the day. Guest rooms and suites offer mahogany-style headboards; wallmounted, 32-inch flat screen televisions; coffee makers; spacious work desks; and complimentary wired and wireless high-speed Internet access. Double-paned glass windows ensure a quiet respite away from the bustle of the city and bathrooms are tastefully appointed with marble surfaces, digital scales, make-up mirrors and fresh amenities. The hotel’s 500-square-foot suites provide separate living and sleeping areas, sofas and two flat screen televisions in each unit. Wyndham Garden Hotel Panama City provides guests with a 24hour fitness center and business center, where guests can check email, send and receive faxes or make use of a conference room that seats up to eight people. Other nearby places of interest include Museo de Arte Contemporáneo with its vast collection; Casco Viejo, the capital’s historic city center; Mercado de Artesania, a two-story building with shops selling local crafts, jewelry and art; and Multicentro Shopping Mall, Central America’s largest mall. Wyndham Hotels and Resorts, 800-WYNDHAM (996-3426), • Travel World News




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In December, the Stella Australis joined the Patagonia Cruises fleet of Cruceros Australis. The ship is larger than the Via and Mare and can accommodate up to 210 passengers, with 100 spacious cabins. Like their other Chilean built ships, this vessel was specially designed to cruise the waters of Tierra del Fuego, Strait of Magellan and Cape Horn. The Stella is 292 ft. long, 48 ft breadth and a gross 4,500 tonnage. It boasts three lounges in addition to its dining room and a fitness room with the latest in exercise equipment. Well-appointed rooms with modern wood and metalaccented common areas and American-designed furniture complement the ship’s interior. All rooms and common areas enjoy extra large windows allowing guests to view the Southern Patagonia scenery at all times while crossing one of history’s most explored regions. Each cabin is 177 square feet and has large picture windows, independent climate control, a large closet and safe and a private bathroom. Guests will experience the grandeur of Southern Patagonia on Cruceros Australis’ three- and four-night expedition journeys at the southernmost tip of the South American continent, observing wildlife, glaciers and Cape Horn with its marine and historical significance from the ship and zodiacs with daily landings. Cruceros Australis, 877-678-3772,,

EXPLORA’S CHILEAN HOTELS ARE PERFECT BASES FOR ENJOYING THE COUNTRY’S EXTENSIVE WONDERS Marketed by the Mantis Group, Santiago-based explora has three Chilean properties—a hotel in San Pedro de Atacama, one in Patagonia, and the most recently opened on Easter Island. Room rates at each include transfers between local airport and the explora destination; three meals daily; and fantastic daily explorations in the particular region with bilingual guides (maximum eight explorers per guide) and equipment. Each day, travelers can choose among five and 10 different awe36 • FEBRUARY 2011

inspiring expeditions. explora recommends four-night stays at its properties to allow travelers to get in touch with each area’s culture and inhabitants. Adventurous travelers use Atacama’s five-star Hotel de Larache as a base for discovering the area’s surprising natural beauty and cultural richness. Here, diverse wildlife has developed in the midst of high volcanoes, salt flats, lagoons and ravines. Desert foliage is scarce and subtle except for once every four years when it bursts into bloom—a phenomenon known as “Desert of Flowers” and a spectacle worth seeing. Hotel de Larache comprises 50 comfortable rooms and four suites. With interconnecting rooms and enhanced group programs, the venue is attractive to families. The dining room offers exceptional cuisine with wine tastings held twice a week. Rates start at $2,760 for three nights for a single room. explora’s five-star hotel on Rapa Nui (Easter Island) is located in the middle of the Pacific Ocean 2,300 miles from the coast of South America. Easter Island is the farthest island from any populated land on the planet. Getting there requires a five-hour flight from either Santiago or Tahiti. Named in honor of explora’s partner in the project, the Posada de Mike Rapu is set on a hill three miles from the island’s only inhabited village. The lodge comprises 31 rooms and four suites, all facing the Pacific Ocean. It was the first in South America to obtain LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification from the United States Green Building Council. The Posada boasts a French chef and a sommelier, and twiceweekly wine tastings. Rates start at $3,354 for three nights for a single room. Easter Island is famous for its famous, gigantic carved stone statues called moai and the exotic and mysterious culture of the Rapanui people. Their popular Zapati is a two-week annual extravaganza of music, dance performances, swimming meets, canoeing contests, and sled rides on woven banana leaves, where on the last day foreigners can participate in the festivities. In the continent’s southernmost Patagonia, one of the least populated places on the planet, explora’s Hotel Salto Chico is at the center of Torres del Paine National Park, a world biodiversity reserve. Located on the shore of Lake Pehoe, the hotel faces a panoramic view of the iconic granite mountain, Maçizo del Paine. The hotel comprises 50 rooms including six suites and features a television salon, telephones, fax and radio contact within the park, laundry service, a restaurant, a bar and a shop. A nearby annex houses a heated indoor lap pool, four outdoor Jacuzzis, a sauna and massage salons. Rates start at $3,748 for a single room for four nights. Patagonia is a wild, unknown land at the end of the world, a silent terrain with no motor roads and awesome natural beauty. Explorations are classified according to duration and level of difficulty. explora, 866-750-6699,,; Mantis, • Travel World News




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Physical, intellectual and spiritual adventures â&#x20AC;&#x201C; more a state-of-mind than a risky or arduous challenge. The real adventure is new insights, the awe found in nature, encounters with new cultures, and the excitement of personal discovery. FEBRUARY 2011 â&#x20AC;˘



South African Airways Vacations Offers New Air-Inclusive, Luxurious Yet Affordable Packages Throughout Africa—and 12% for Agents Destination Southern Africa now manages SAAV’s dream programs from U.S.


hen planning that once-in-a-lifetime African safari vacation, travelers are necessarily confronted with endless choices and options. South African Airways Vacations is ideally positioned to sort it all out, having multitudinous resources on which to draw and an ability to satisfy every budgetary consideration. With experts handling every little detail, this ensures a memorable and flawless vacation, whether for individual clients or groups. Exciting, all-new packages have been introduced by SAAV for 2011, with a 12-percent commission on all programs, including specials or promotions. A new agency bonus commission program will also ensure that SAA Vacations continues to be a lucrative sales product for members of the travel trade. A division of South African Airways (SAA), the national airline of South Africa, SAA Vacations is highly regarded for its wide array of affordable luxury packages to Africa, utilizing SAA’s extensive route network to create packages for travel throughNature, exquisitely free in the vast, protected landscape of Africa. out South Africa, Botswana, Victoria Falls, Namibia, Mozambique, Zambia, and Zimbabwe, and now East Africa, flights on South African Airways, along with luxurious stays in Cape Town and at some of the world’s most exciting safari rolled out in January. The program is fulfilled by Destination Southern Africa lodges and vacation properties. Meet and greet by profes(DSA), managing SAAV’s extensive portfolio with a variety of sional SAA Vacations personnel plus transfers are always inhotels, game lodges and safari companies throughout cluded. While packages are offered, customization is always Southern Africa. Founded in 2001, DSA was one of only three welcome. Booking with SAA Vacations ensures a top-notch U.S. tour operators officially appointed by MATCH to develop holiday at an amazing price, and with worthwhile commisand sell travel packages for soccer fans visiting South Africa for sions and bonuses. For example, their Affordable Cape Luxury package includes the FIFA 2010 World Cup, making it a partner with extensive knowledge and know-how in planning the perfect African va- nine days of Cape Town and the Cape Winelands, and starts at just $2,199, with four nights at the Protea Hotel President location. “SAA is pleased to offer this new and enhanced SAA cated close to the beach and right near town, and two nights at Vacations program for 2011,” said Marc Cavaliere, Executive the quaint Protea Franschhoek, nestled in the wine country, Vice President, North America, for South African Airways. with a wine estate tour included. Cape and Kruger Escape, nine days in Cape Town and on sa“Together with Destination Southern Africa, we aim to offer agents all-new travel packages that will make your clients fall fari in Kruger, begins at $2,435, and includes four nights at the in love with the African continent and with its most awarded sophisticated Southern Sun Waterfront, with a full-day Cape Peninsula Tour and half-day Winelands tour, plus two nights at airline—South African Airways.” the luxuriously rustic Protea Hotel Kruger Gate, with a safari Africa for Every Budget game drive to explore the Big Five in the world-famous Kruger SAA Vacations’ all-new packages start as low as $1,799 and National Park. include roundtrip flights from the US and domestic African Cape and Garden Splendour is a 10-day trip featuring Cape 38 • FEBRUARY 2011 • Travel World News

AFRICA Town and the Garden Route, starting at $2,899. It includes four nights at the Protea Hotel President and one night each at some of the Garden Route’s most charming Protea Hotel properties: the Riempies Estate, Knysna Quays, and Mossel Bay. Full-day tours of the Cape Peninsula and wine region are included, plus the best of the Garden Route’s wonders by road and water, including the Cango Caves, the Keurbooms River Nature Reserve, and an exciting game drive tracking wildlife, including lions and rare black impalas. Long on luxe, Cape, Safari & The Falls runs 13 days and is priced from $5,999. This package includes flights, ultimate luxury in Cape Town and on safari plus sightseeing of the mighty Victoria Falls and much more. Accommodations include overnights in the magnificent fivestar Table Bay Hotel and Thornybush Main Lodge, four-star Ilala Lodge, and three-star Garden Court Sandton. Some special highlights include a luxury sundowner cruise on the Zambezi, visits to a penguin colony and Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens—with around 3,500 species of Southern African fauna and flora, and the shoppers paradise of Sandton and Nelson Mandela Square. Also featured is a tour with tastings in the Cape wine region and a view of the charming university town of Stellenbosch. Affordable South Africa is a nine-day trip that shares a tour of the Cape peninsula and starts at just $2,599. Accommodations are at Protea Hotel Fire & Ice in Cape Town, the Protea Hotel Fire & Ice in trendy Melrose Arch and fivestar Shepherd’s Tree Game Lodge, a lodge concession awarded by the North West Parks and Tourism Board within the existing Pilanesberg Game Reserve. Besides the Big Five, various mammals exist in the park, including the rare nocturnal brown hyena and majestic sable antelope. Rhino favor the lodge site and the cliffs nearby provide strong updrafts for soaring marvels. A host of nature and safari activities are on offer, from drives in open game vehicles with dedicated game rangers to walking trails through the Pilansberg wilderness. On all packages, fuel surcharges of $290 are included; airline taxes are additional. Prices are for travel from New York JFK or Washington, D.C.’s Dulles Airport. Low add-on fares are available from destinations throughout the U.S.

Booking Profits and Praise “We’re excited about operating SAA Vacations and offering this new commission and bonus program we’ve put together for members of the travel trade,” said Terry von Guilleaume, President of SAA Vacations. “We’ve endeavored to put together packages that are an easy sell to clients—the best of the African continent at the best prices. With this generous commission, 2011 can be a profitable year for our partners.” Information on the commission and agency bonus programs is available from Cheryle Velsor, Director of Agency Sales & Travel World News •

Industry Relations; for group bookings, Jim Vance, Groups Manager, is the person to contact. A new SAA Vacations travel agent website launches February 1. Agents may request bookings through the website, by email, or toll-free call 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

SAA Vacations, 855-FLY-SAAV (359-7228),, (sales), (groups),

FOR TERRY VON GUILLEAUME, DESTINATION SOUTHERN AFRICA IS APTLY NAMED DSA’s President Terry von Guilleaume has a unique background that explains his devotion to providing perfect vacations in South Africa. He was born and raised in South Africa and after graduating from Stellenbosch University in the Western Cape, decided to visit the USA. His mother was born in New York and his father had studied at UCLA. Interested to see how his parents TERRY VON GUILLEAUME had spent their youth, he planned on staying a year or two, but after working as a teacher in Alabama, California and Wyoming, he realized he’d spent four years in the U.S. and decided to return to South Africa. As it turns out, though, with a mere month remaining in the U.S., he met his wife-to-be. He and Holly “flipped a coin” and agreed to give their life together a start in the U.S. Passionate about his country and Africa, Terry needed to satisfy his yearning to be back in SA. This was the impetus for starting Destination Southern Africa: “It allowed me to go to work every day, keeping in touch with South Africa and sharing my knowledge and love for it with would-be visitors.” Ten years later, Terry and Holly still live in Tucson and have three young children. Both former teachers, they fully believe that travel is an integral part of everyone’s education—child or adult. Their ultimate goal is to have a home in Africa and a home in the USA, allowing the family to experience the best of both worlds. Destination Southern Africa provides rare consultant knowledge and has access to a large variety of tours, hotels, lodges, flights and transport. They tailor vacations emphasizing customer service and delivering value for money spent. The company is able to demand excellent prices from an extensive network of direct suppliers. They are currently partnered with Tour de Afrique in Cape Town, which handles their clients on the ground. Destination Southern Africa (DSA),,,




Great Safaris, based in Glendale, California, has launched their 2011 safari product line. A striking brochure—featuring their signature leopard image on the cover—is now available for distribution to the travel agent community, also downloadable from their website. According to company President Anne Bellamy, 2011 should be a great year for the travel industry. “Economic indexes are looking very positive for the travel industry. There is a lot of pent-up demand out there. We are hearing so many travelers saying, in essence, ‘Just get over it…and get on with it. It’s time to travel again!’” In celebration, Great Safaris is offering extraordinary specials for 2011. A sampling includes: An eight-day luxury Cape Town escapade, including international airfare, for only $1,999 per person. A youngster aged 12 or less, sharing with parents, free of charge on the 13-day Great Egyptian itinerary. The offer applies to the land package and is valid for travel May through August. A waiver of the single supplement on select itineraries to Botswana, Tanzania, Kenya and Egypt. This represents a saving of up to $1,680 per person. Applicable itineraries and dates listed on the website. Savings of $2,011 per couple during May on the 10-day Tanzania itinerary—The Greatest Show on Earth. Great Safaris, headed up by industry veteran Dave Herbert, is headquartered in the USA but has 10 onsite offices in Africa fully staffed by dedicated professionals. The company’s prime destinations are South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Namibia, Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda and the Indian Ocean Islands. Travel agents are extended full commissions on published land programs. Great Safaris specializes in custom-designed FITs, and these can be quoted either gross or net. Great Safaris,

SOUTH AFRICAN AIRWAYS VACATIONS PRESENTS THE JACK HANNA SHAMWARI SAFARI Fans of Jungle Jack Hanna, America’s most beloved animal adventurer, can follow in his footsteps at Mantis’ Shamwari Game Reserve near Port Elizabeth in South Africa, where several weeks 40 • FEBRUARY 2011

were spent filming Into the Wild, his Emmy Award-winning nature and wildlife-based television series. The Jack Hanna Shamwari Safari takes place over three nights and four days, during which safari-goers will absorb the sights and sounds and activities that Jack Hanna relished while on location at Shamwari, an acclaimed, conservation-minded game reserve and animal rehabilitation center. This is an exciting, hands-on journey that comprises game drives, Ranger presentations, white rhino trekking, cheetah walking, stargazing and a photographic safari Rates for the Jack Hanna Shamwari Safari start at $1,699 pp based on a minimum of two persons sharing. The package includes three nights/four days at one of six different lodges in the private Shamwari Game Reserve, all meals—three dinners, four breakfasts and three lunches, and all Safari activities including game drives outlined in the itinerary. Rates exclude flights and transportation, gratuities, items of personal expense (drinks, laundry, telephone calls, etc.), and any items or services not listed. The Jack Hanna Shamwari Safari package is only available through South African Airways Vacations (SAAV). South African Airways Vacations, 855-359-7228,,; The Mantis Group,

SABI SABI’S SELATI CAMP OPENS NEWLY REBUILT IVORY SUITE Following four months of construction, Selati Camp’s Ivory Presidential Suite at Sabi Sabi, an internationally renowned private game reserve in the greater Kruger National Park area, South Africa, is open and ready for guests. The suite has been closed because of an accidental fire in July last year. Upgrades at the newly redesigned Ivory Suite include an even larger bathroom, complete with a magnificent chaise lounge, oversized stone bath and large walk-in shower. Huge sliding glass doors lead to an outdoor shower, accompanied by an intimate patio and private plunge pool, all of which enjoy beautiful views of the surrounding bushveld. Renowned South African designer Stephen Rich was recruited to recreate the beauty and sense of history for which the original suite was famous. Rich antiques, Persian rugs and decadent fabrics in the suite, complemented by authentic railway memorabilia, create old world ambiance. The heart of the suite is the carved-wood bed covered in heavy linen and draped with sheer netting. Guests staying in the Ivory Suite have their own ranger and private Land Rover for safaris. Intimate, exclusive and wildly romantic, Selati Camp is ideal for couples looking to escape to the era of colonial elegance in safari adventures. Named after the historical Selati Railway line that ran through the eastern section of the private reserve and a legendary female chief of the ancient Tebula tribe, the camp’s old world charm, design and spirit strike a contrast to modern game lodges. The Ivory Suite at Selati Camp starts at $1,179 per person per night. Sabi Sabi,, • Travel World News




AFRICA CONNECTION TOURS SENEGAL Representing a unique collection of distinctive hotels and travel experiences worldwide Creators of dreams…artists of perfection in travel…delivering incredible bespoke, inspired experiences Let us assist you with designing idyllic itineraries for your clients with our spectrum of product ranging from Southern Africa to South America, Galapagos Islands to Europe, Caribbean and beyond. 305.864.4569 -


FESMAN 2010 The World Festival of Black Arts and Cultures to be held in Dakar from December 10th to 31st Please inquire about our special packages and attend!

Africa Connection Tours Email: Phone: (221) 33 849 52 00 Fax: (221) 33 821 83 26 Website:


Discover Southern Africa Enjoy the beauty and delight of unspoiled Africa. Follow the sun on its travels across the southern tip. Each step you take is made in unparalleled comfort, enjoy all that three of the world’s premier 5-star hotels have to offer.

To discover more about the Route of the African Sun please call:

Our African network now connects to 18 cities. It’s time to discover more of Africa with Brussels Airlines

800 727 9930

A U.S.- based travel company specializing in travel to Southern and East Africa. An unforgettable journey to West Africa – a land rich in history, culture and where people are noted for their warmth, friendliness and hospitality. Virgin beaches, historical sites, markets, amazing wildlife parks and forest reserves. Relax, enjoy the experience of a Lifetime

Specializing in travel to Africa “We don’t send you to Africa – We take you there!”

Offices in the United States and Kenya specializing in travel programs in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. Our focus is on quality travel experiences with an emphasis on enhancing the travelers’ knowledge of wildlife & ecology as well as cultural and social issues.


Morocco’s 10th Tourist Convention: The Vision of a King Five Basic Principles are presented with an eye toward future growth. R O B I N S WA D O S


42 • FEBRUARY 2011

An All-Encompassing Vision Morocco’s development of new tourism goals covers virtually every area of the country, while adding eight new tourism locations to the north along the Mediterranean coast; in the Central Atlantic; in Central Morocco; in Marrakesh Atlantic, the Atlas Mountains and their valleys, the Sahara Atlantic and the Grand South Atlantic. The emphasis will be on quality tourism and staff training. A further 200,000 beds will be created. Morocco’s new vision for 2020 rests on five basic principles: building on the achievements of Vision 2010; moving forward to a more integrated form of territorial improvement; making the most of the country’s wide variety of resources by responding to the demands of the most promising markets; remedying the industry’s persistent structural weaknesses; and placing sustainable development at the heart of its strategy. Given the magnificence of its history, the beauty of its architecture both old and new, its world-famed cuisine, and its local color and customs, Morocco justifiably views tourism as a powerful tool for promoting itself abroad, strengthening its links with Europe, showcasing a Kingdom—led by a very young King—with a long history and a rich heritage, urging visitors to interact with its friendly and welcoming people, and enacting a smooth transition from an ancient past into a confident future, clearly establishing itself as one of the rising stars of international tourism.

Moroccan National Tourist Office, ROBIN SWADOS

orocco’s 10th Tourism Convention took place in Marrakesh on Nov. 30, presided over by no less than King Mohammed VI himself, and with an audience of some 3,000 Moroccan and international tourism professionals in attendance. Yassir Znagui, Morocco’s Minister of Tourism and Artisans, presented the keynote address of the convention, entitled Vision 2020, with a view toward the next 10 years of Morocco’s objective of increasing its visibility as one of the world’s major tourism destinations. It is currently 25th on that list; by 2020 it aims to be YASSIR ZNAGUI 10th—a goal that seems all but certain to take place. With its largely mountainous topography, Morocco nevertheless presents visitors with an incredibly diverse number of opportunities to experience in a remarkably short period of time. In the span of one week, for example, one can sleep in a tent on the edge of the Sahara desert; inhale sea breezes in ancient Portugese ports along the Atlantic Ocean; lie on the sands of Mediterranean beaches; and wander through a dazzling array of exotic cities ranging from Marrakesh to Fez to Tangier. Ten years ago, when Vision 2010 was launched, it provided a launch pad for future growth and sustainable development and management of the environment, since the country has always been—and continues to be— deeply sensitive to the preservation of its historical elements, even as new hotels, resorts, and housing communities are built. The aim of Vision 2020, Mr. Znagui emphasized, is to make Morocco one of the 10 top destinations in the world, with an investment of nearly 177 billion dirhams ($20 billion) in the hope of doubling the number of tourists, increasing tourism revenue, and creating 147,000 new jobs in the sector by 2020. The overall goal is to double the size of the tourism sector and triple the number of national tourists over the course of the next decade.

A well-attended luncheon at Vision 2020. • Travel World News


Offbeat Safaris operates safaris in Kenya ideally suited to families with children of all ages. Offbeat Meru Camp, an intimate, vintage safari camp located in northern Kenya, is a perfect location to start a family safari. The camp is located on the edge of Meru National Park in the Bisanadi National Reserve in a stunning location overlooking the Bisanadi River with beautiful forest. Meru National Park itself boasts healthy wildlife numbers with large elephant and buffalo herds, giraffe galore, plenty of lions and one of Kenya's finest rhino sanctuaries with around 70 rhino. Both Offbeat Meru Camp and sister property Offbeat Mara Camp, located just north of the Masai Mara in the new Mara North Conservancy, offer teenager and child rates all year round and also offer multi-night specials between properties, making these intimate safari camps some of the most affordable, traditional safari camps in East Africa. On all new 2011 bookings made before March 31, 2011, guests booking three nights at both Offbeat Meru and Offbeat Mara camps will get six nights for the price of five. Offbeat Safaris, (North America office),,

SUN INTERNATIONAL ZAMBIA RINGS IN ANOTHER YEAR OF RESPONSIBLE TOURISM Sun International Zambia was named the overall winner of the 2010 Imvelo Awards for Responsible Tourism, the second year in a row they have received this distinction. Sun International Zambia won additional awards for best practices in economic impact, implementing social involvement programs and for best environmental management systems. The Imvelo Awards for Responsible Tourism were created to spur awareness of sustainability issues in the South African tourism industry. The Imvelo Awards follow the U.N. World Tourism Organization’s code of ethics and are organized by the Federated Hospitality Association of Southern Africa. For the past decade, Sun International Zambia has been a leader in executing corporate social investment programs, along with the government and its partners. Sun International also plays a direct role in the health and wellbeing of a community heavily affected by HIV/AIDS and malaria. Travel World News •

Sun International Zambia places a high priority on education and provides food, clothing and learning materials to children living in Livingstone and in the surrounding towns, besides undertaking extensive renovations at several primary schools. Acting as a key stakeholder, Sun International has spearheaded multiple initiatives to stimulate local economies in sustainable fashion. There is an onsite hydroponic greenhouse at The Falls Resort and farming blocks for the blind and widows living with HIV/AIDS. Sun International Zambia supports fish farming, mushroom growing, and egg-rearing projects, and created the Farmers Market where 400 small-scale farmers can sell their goods. Sun International,,; Imvelo Awards,

NINE BOTSWANA PROPERTIES MAKE 2011 CONDÉ NAST TRAVELER GOLD LIST Reaffirming its status as Africa’s premier safari destination, Botswana is home to nine properties showcased among the 2011 Condé Nast Traveler Gold List. This is the 17th year Condé Nast Traveler has issued its Gold List, which is comprised of over 25,000 Condé Nast Traveler readers’ top picks of the world’s best hotels, resorts, cruise lines and more. The following Botswana properties are listed on the 2011 Condé Nast Traveler Gold List under the Africa + Middle East category with their respective overall score—the list described by Condé Nast as “the best places to stay in the world, selected by the readers of Condé Nast Traveler:” Mombo and Little Mombo, WildernessSafaris, 98.4; Jao Camp, Wilderness-Safaris, 94.3; Sandibe Okavango Safari Lodge, &Beyond Africa, 93.6; Duma Tau Camp, Wilderness Safaris, 93.3; Khwai River Lodge, Orient Express Safaris, 91.4; Savute Elephant Camp, Orient Express Safaris, 91.2; Camp Okavango, Desert & Delta Safaris, 91; Sanctuary Chief’s Camp, Sanctuary Retreats, 90.5; and Vumbura Plains, Wilderness-Safaris, 90.3. These properties also showed up on the Gold List in other categories, such as best location, best food, best design, best service and best activities. Mombo and Little Mombo, Jao Camp, Duma Tau Camp and Vumbura Plains received scores of 100 in the best location category. Mombo and Little Mombo received a score of 96.3 in the best food category. Vumbura Plains received a score of 100 in the best design category. For best service, Duma Tau Camp received a score of 100 and Mombo and little Mombo received 98.1. In the best activities category Mombo and Little Mombo received a score of 100, Jao Camp and Duma Tau Camp received 97.1, Camp Okavango received 96.4 and Sandibe Okavango Safari Lodge received 96.2. It should be noted that this is revised information, as the Botswana Tourism-USA office earlier announced that Savuti Camp of Wilderness Safaris was on the list, when in fact the correct camp/company is Savute Elephant Camp of Orient Express. Botswana Tourism Organization, FEBRUARY 2011 •



African continent is scattered with islands whose names—Zanzibar, Quirimbas, Mauritius and Seychelles—conjure images of the exotic. There are very few untouched corners left in the world but off the coast of northern Mozambique is a cluster of 27 African islands few have heard of: the Quirimbas Archipelago. These flat, coral islands have wide sandy beaches perfect for sun bathing, shell collecting, elaborate picnics and moonlit barbeques. The Quirimbas islands are perfectly located off the coast of Africa for relaxing after the excitement of a big game African safari. And the excitement can continue underwater by exploring some of the wildest, untouched dive sites imaginable and in swapping the big game of Africa’s interior for incredible big game fishing. Africa Tour,,

Escorted by knowledgeable English-speaking guides, travelers will discover over 500 years of Jewish Moroccan heritage and history in a nine-day package currently offered by Sahara Soul Travel. The trips takes visitors from ancient synagogues to historic Jewish neighborhoods, museums and cemeteries, to souk bazaars to a nomadstyle tent for a night under the stars in the Sahara desert. Sahara Soul Travel’s specialized Morocco Jewish heritage tours include an expertly guided journey through urban centers of Casablanca and Rabat, to the ancient Jewish district of the city of Fez, including the 15th-century synagogue, to the quiet, holy city of Moulay Idrisss. Guests will travel through the Berber villages of the Middle Atlas Mountains, partly by private camel caravan, to Merzouga, and then continue through the Dades Valley concluding in a private tour of the historic Jewish mellah district of Marrakesh with its ancient synagogues. Also included in the package is a tour of the village Ait ben Haddou, a UNESCO world heritage site and the location of such films as “Lawrence of Arabia” and “The Last Temptation of Christ.” This ground-only nine-day package is competitively priced at $1,990 ppdo. Single supplements are available upon request at additional cost. Travel is conducted in an air-conditioned late-model sedan or minivan with private, English-speaking driver. Lodging is at elegant Moroccan Riads or four-star hotels. For December travel, $300 supplement must be added. Meals are kosher upon request. The complete nine-day itinerary and details are available online. Sahara Soul Travel, 800-799-3080,


ENCHANTING EAST COAST OF AFRICA AWAITS WITH AFRICA TOUR Africa Tour will provide an awesome African summer at the beach for those eager to escape winter’s frigidity. From Cape Town to Seychelles, Africa’s beaches and islands are at their best in the first few months of the year. For an extended beach holiday, travelers can drive up the East coast from Cape Town to the beaches, forests, coastal towns and fun-filled activities of the Garden Route. Further north is the Wild Coast and the wild beaches of KwaZulu Natal where northward the sea gets steadily warmer and more tropical. The vast Indian Ocean that extends along the east coast of the 44 • FEBRUARY 2011

Luxury travel company Travcoa has designated the August 20 departure of their Grand Safari with Kenya & Tanzania as the company’s annual President’s Journey. Led by company President Jerre Fuqua and professional travel director/photographer Kymri Wilt, the 15-day luxury safari is set to explore the legendary game parks of Kenya and Tanzania using light aircraft to fly between safari experiences. Highlights will include Nairobi, Amboseli National Park and the Masai Mara in Kenya, and Arusha, Ngorongoro Crater and the Serengeti in Tanzania. The President’s Journey Grand Safari is limited to 18 guests and will be escorted by Travcoa Travel Director Kymri Wilt, along with expert local guides. Wilt is a professional photographer and will be available to all guests, regardless of photography skill level, for tips on photo technique and equipment use. Accommodations are in boutique lodges such as Arusha Coffee Lodge, The Manor at Ngorongoro Crater and small, luxury, tented camps in private locations including Serengeti Migration Camp and Governors’ Il Moran camp in Kenya’s Masai Mara. Il Moran’s strategic location at the Mara River maximizes the opportunity to witness the annual river crossing during the migration of over 1.4 million wildebeest and 200,000 zebra into Kenya each year. This is widely regarded as one of the greatest wildlife spectacles on Earth. Other highlights include scenic flights between itinerary stops; a lavish picnic lunch set deep in Tanzania’s Ngorongoro crater complete with a private chef, waiters, linens and crystal; an early morning hot air balloon excursion over Kenya’s Masai Mara followed by a champagne brunch; and a visit to the Sheldrick Trust’s Elephant and Rhino Nursery outside Nairobi to interact with orphaned infant elephants and their keepers. Each booking will receive a one-year sponsorship of an orphaned infant elephant courtesy of Travcoa. The all-inclusive Grand Safari features all ground transportation, hot air ballooning, all meals including evening “sundowners” and memorable dinners in the bush. Several other very special events are planned for the President’s Journey. Price for the 2011 Grand Safari is $10,990 ppdo, plus $1,790 for intra-tour air. Travcoa, 800-992-2005,, • Travel World News


BOBBY TOURS AND SAFARIS Tanzania Tour Operators to all National Parks: Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater, Lake Manyara, Tarangire, Arusha National Park, Mount Kilimanjaro Climb, Mount Meru Climb, Lodge Safaris, Camping Safaris and Luxury Camping Safaris.



Karibuni to Tanzania ‘karibuni’ means welcome all, in the Swahili language Tanzania – a land of warm and friendly people... ...the kind of people you will find at Equatorials Safaris Ltd.

FISHERMAN TOURS AND TRAVEL has great pleasure in welcoming visitors to the land of Kilimanjaro and the beautiful unspoiled islands of Zanzibar.

Strategically located at the foot of Mount Kilimanjaro in the township of Moshi is surrounded by verdant gardens, with spectacular views of ‘Kili’ and Mount Meru, the lodge is a perfect place to relax – in between safaris and mountain climbing expeditions. SERENGETI BIG CATS SAFARIS

A warm and personal calm will greet you as you walk into your home-away-from-home in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. We aim to ensure a wonderful, enjoyable lifetime adventure with our safaris all while experiencing the great hospitality of the Tanzanian people and their cultures. Tanzania remains an excellent tourist destination with true African cultures, rich wildlife, spectacular scenery, white sandy beaches, hotels and lodges of high standards.

is a fast growing Tanzanian travel agency and safari company based in Arusha. We organize safaris in all major national parks of Tanzania, as well as beach vacations on the island of Zanzibar.

Offering authentic Tanzanian hospitality, it stands as one of the city’s premier hotel for both business and leisure travelers.


Festival, also known as The ZIFF Festival of the Dhow Countries. East Africa’s largest cultural event, the film festival takes place in Zanzibar around the magnificent, historical venues along the waterfront of Stone Town. Many screenings take place outdoors in an historic amphitheater. The festival celebrates the unique cultural heritage of Africa and the Dhow countries of the Indian Ocean region and their global Diaspora. The 2011 Zanzibar International Festival will take place July 2–10. The Sauti za Busara music festival, now in its eighth year, will take place in Zanzibar February 9–13 this month. Sauti za Busara is Swahili for “Sounds of Wisdom.” The festival includes 40 musical groups, hailing from Zanzibar, Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Mozambique, Mauritius, Zimbabwe, West Africa and Europe. Tanzania Tourist Board,,

While most game lovers go for the North—Serengeti, Ngorongoro and Manyara, game in Southern Tanzania is the country’s best-kept secret. Adventure lovers and those who seek closer contact with some of Africa’s most complex ecosystems are well rewarded. Here one can view game walking, riding and boating. Tanzania’s Southern Safari is a place where one can have the unforgettable experience of getting very close to wild animals—so much so that tour outfitter Bestway Tours & Safaris even provides an armed ranger on board. This is game adventure at its best with overnights mostly under permanently stationed tents. Safari specialists Bestway Tours & Safaris have developed their unique 10-day journey for small groups with maximum group size limited to seven people. For the year 2011, there are 10 departures being offered. Details are available on their website. Bestway Tours & Safaris, 800-663-0844,,


EXOTIC ZANZIBAR NAMED ONE OF ‘41 PLACES TO GO IN 2011’ BY NEW YORK TIMES Zanzibar, also known as “the spice islands,” has long conjured up a romantic image for travelers. Located along the Indian Ocean off the coast of mainland Tanzania, Zanzibar was named one of “41 Places to Go in 2011” by the New York Times in its Sunday Travel Section, January 9, 2011, with a circulation of more than one million. An autonomous state within The United Republic of Tanzania, Zanzibar consists of Unguja (also known as Zanzibar Island), Pemba and some 50 smaller surrounding islands and islets. Stone Town, the historic port city of Zanzibar Island, is a World Heritage Site and a major cultural attraction. Already popular for its beaches, water sports, scuba diving (using environmentally-friendly equipment), underwater photography, reef watching, dolphin watching and snorkeling, Zanzibar is now focusing on promoting its many year-round festivals showcasing the diverse cultures and history of Tanzania’s Kiswahili coastal islands. The most well known festival is the Zanzibar International Film 46 • FEBRUARY 2011

The distinguished Cape Royale Luxury Hotel & Residence has unveiled its new “Royale Experience,” which provides travelers with a host of lavish amenities and experiences to enhance their stay in Cape Town. The Royale Experience package includes four nights’ accommodation at the award-winning property in a gorgeous one-bedroom apartment fully equipped with the most modern amenities and technology, a 20-minute helicopter tour of the Atlantic Seaboard and Cape Peninsula, a couple’s massage at the on-property Equinox Spa, a tempting world class dinner at the hotel’s signature restaurant 1800 Degrees, and complimentary transfers to the V&A Waterfront. Travelers seeking a bit more adventure can add on a two-night allinclusive luxury safari experience at the malaria-free Gondwana Game Reserve including two game drives per day, gourmet meals and transfers from George Airport. Rates begin at just $1,795 ppdo. Cape Royale Luxury Hotel & Residence is Cape Town’s newest fivestar property, and has recently become a member of Preferred Hotels & Resorts. With a backdrop of Table Mountain and close proximity to the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, this all-suite hotel, presents an ideal setting in the heart of Cape Town. The hotel has just 93 generously sized apartment-style suites, ideal for both business and leisure travelers. Deluxe Suites offer views of Cape Town and the sea whereas the Deluxe Family Suites feature two bedrooms with views of Table Mountain and the waterfront. With multiple bedrooms, the Penthouse Suites and Presidential Suite are ideal for business groups or families traveling together. All accommodations feature living and entertainment areas and luxurious dining rooms with glass chandeliers, some with open plan lounges and Juliet balconies. Guests will appreciate the intimate details throughout the hotel, including individually selected artwork in each suite. Trumarketing,,; Cape Royale Hotel & Residence, • Travel World News


Steenberg Hotel’s Golf Academy package, at $1,302 ppdo, offers golfers a five-day/four-night stay with early three-hour lessons for three days that include professional instruction, tips for improvement and driving range balls, as well as light refreshments and lunch. Advanced players can select a nine-hole playing lesson. All will receive a certificate of completion at the end of the program. Travelers looking for a short escape can select the three-day/twonight Golf and Pamper package, which includes a three-course dinner with set menu in Catharina’s Restaurant and a 60-minute massage at the Ginkgo Spa or one round of golf. This package is priced at $554 ppdo. Both packages are available through March 31, 2010, and include daily breakfast, complimentary transfers to local shops and restaurants, and private wine tasting at the Steenberg Vineyard. The Club features an 18-hole championship golf course designed by Peter Matkovitch, continuously named one of the best-conditioned courses in South Africa’s Golf Digest’s Top 100 and the number one course in Cape Town. The par-three 14th hole features the largest green in Africa at a little more than 249 feet in length. A 20-minute drive from Cape Town, the hotel is set on the Cape’s oldest wine farm that still produces award-winning wines. The hotel buildings, dating back to 1682, have been painstakingly restored and declared a national monument. There are 21 guest rooms and three Heritage suites within the buildings. The original wine cellar is now the excellent Catharina’s restaurant, where Chef Garth Almazan prepares innovative cuisine complemented by superb Constantia wines. The hotel has a luxurious spa, two swimming pools and a pool bar, as well as a trendy new tapas bar, Bixtro Sixteen82. Accommodations for both packages are luxury standard room. Rates include VAT and Tourism Levy. The Steenberg suggests reserving spa and golf appointments in advance. This is not available with any other special offers. Steenberg Hotel,,

GUESTS ENJOY POLLUTION-FREE NIGHT SKY IN ZAMBIA WITH NORMAN CARR SAFARIS Today, half of the world’s population can no longer see the stars because of pollution. An outstanding exception is the remote and pristine South Luangwa Valley in Zambia where the wonder of the night Travel World News •

sky reigns with Norman Carr Safaris’ “Return to the Wild” sleepout safari. With famed guide Abraham Banda at the lead, guests will wend their way to the spectacularly beautiful Luwi dry riverbed where the night is spent on a bedroll with a mosquito net. They’ll see the marvelous Southern Cross and the vast black hole beneath it, as Banda points out the constellations of the glittering Southern sky and explains how the stars influence the daily activities of the Zambian people. The orange moon reflects on night waters, and when the stars come out so do the fireflies until thousands of points of light surround, above and below. On the night under the stars, once the camping site is selected and a campfire lit, the game ranger prepares dinner the help of the guests. After dinner, adventure stories are told around the fire until it’s time to bed down under the magnificent African sky while guide and scout keep watch until morning. The rate per night per person for the Return to the Wild sleep-out safari, for a maximum of four guests, is $200. This may be combined with a stay in one of Norman Carr Safaris’ Bushcamp sites or at the Kapani Lagoon House. Norman Carr Safaris,

GOWAY FEATURES NAMIBIA TOURS—LONELY PLANET’S BEST-VALUE DESTINATION Lonely Planets’ “Best in Travel 2011” has listed Namibia in its top ten best-value destinations for the upcoming year. Goway’s AFRICAExperts General Manager, Moira Smith, agrees: “Namibia offers excellent accommodation options at really affordable prices. And the dollar goes a long way when you’re in this destination.” Rich in culture and history with a variety of different regions all offering their own unique attractions, it’s not surprising that Namibia has become a much sought-after destination. It is an intriguing land of extreme contrasts—home to the highest dunes in the world, the oldest desert in the world and the second largest canyon in the world. An interesting and unique way to experience Nambia is on the Shongololo Express’ Dune Adventure. The concept is unique and is akin to ‘cruising on wheels.’ The train travels at night, and in the morning, Shongololo’s knowledgeable multi-lingual guides offload their customized air-conditioned Mercedes vehicles and guests spend the day exploring the area. In 2011, only two trips are being operated in June and the 12-day journey starts at $3,188. This includes accommodation, transfers, sightseeing, dinner and breakfast. Travelers with specific interests can choose either the seven-day Southern Namibia or the seven-day Northern Namibia circuit. Combined, they form the 15-day Classic Namibia, which includes the Fish River Canyon, Sossusvlei, Swakopmund, Damaraland, Etosha National Park and Windhoek. Prices start from $5,457 and include most meals, all transportation and sightseeing with a qualified driver/guide. Namibia is a vast country so for travelers with limited vacation time, Goway’s AFRICAExperts have designed the seven-day Best of Namibia Flying Safari priced from $5,076. Goway Travel, 800-245-0920,, FEBRUARY 2011 •








February 2011 Edition  

February 2011 edition of Travel World News