Tourism Breaking News

Lords Hotels & Resorts announces launch of new resort in Chotila, Gujarat

Lords Hotels & Resorts has announced plans of launching a new resort in Gujarat’s Chotila. Currently under construction, the resort is expected to commence operations in the last quarter of 2018 making it the chain’s 16th property in Gujarat and overall its 29th. To be launched as Lords Resort Chotila, the forty-six rooms resort will offer accommodations to the pilgrimage tourists visiting the popular Chotila Mata Mandir. Being a resort property it will host all kinds of recreational facilities which will serve as great holiday stays for the leisure tourists too. The development is also in line with Lords Hotels & Resorts’ focus on capitalising on pilgrimage tourism – a segment which is one of the support pillars of the Incredible India campaign. “We are delighted to announce our latest venture in Chotila. This will be our eighth property located at a pilgrimage site and we are consciously focusing on expanding in this segment. While Lords Resort Chotila will be a great place to stay for the pilgrimage tourist, the resort will be a fabulous retreat for the leisure traveller too. The resort architecture is inspired by the shape of a crescent moon and the rooms are designed in the traditional Bhunga style with adjoining private sit out areas overlooking water bodies built around it,” says P R Bansal, Chief Operating Officer, Lords Hotels & Resorts. “I wish to congratulate Ramzan V Halani who owns the property and look forward to partnering for future ventures in the region,” he adds.

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ZTA appoints VFS Global to promote Zimbabwe in India, GCC

In a move to enhance destination awareness and foster market visibility, the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) has appointed VFS Global to promote Zimbabwe as a preferred tourism destination in both India and GCC region, through a collaborative relationship. As part of the agreement, VFS Global would support ZTA to build a unique identity of Zimbabwe as a potential tourist destination by educating and spreading awareness to tour operators, travel agents, MICE planners and the general traveller based in India or GCC region. Commenting on the new partnership, Karikoga Kaseke, Chief Executive of the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority, said “We have not been active in the GCC region and our absence has created room for negative perceptions to prevail. However, we are now ready for this market because Zimbabwe is now open for business. Through the appointment of VFS Global as market representatives for Zimbabwe in the GCC region we aim for increased awareness of Zimbabwe and establish destination presence and visibility. We anticipate a rise in arrivals from GCC region to 13500 by 2021 as VFS Global embarks on aggressively marketing the country. Zimbabwe has recently targeted India as a primary market due to its potential resulting from the rapid growing disposable incomes in India. Jiten Vyas, Regional Group COO, VFS Global added, “As a country bestowed with rich cultural heritage, Zimbabwe is strengthening their tourism business and entering their potential markets. We are pleased to partner with ZTA to put this country that has so much of untapped tourism potential on the world map for travellers from India and GCC who can now experience the beautiful nation of Zimbabwe.”      

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Clarence Fernandes conferred Indo Global Lifetime Achievement Award for promoting tourism into Rwanda

Clarence Fernandes, Chairman, Rwanda Renaissance has been conferred with the “Indo Global Lifetime Achievement Award ” for his contribution towards promoting investments and tourism into Rwanda. During a function, held , at the Kohinoor Continental Hotel, Mumbai,  Aftab Anwar Shaikh, President, Indo Global Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture, commended the tremendous efforts which have been put in by Fernandes in marketing Remarkable Rwanda here in India. In his acceptance speech Fernandes remarked, “I dedicate this award to the people of Rwanda and particularly to the Survivors of the 1994 Genocide Against the Tutsi who have worked tirelessly and against all odds to bring the country from where it was immediately after the Genocide , to where it has reached today, after twenty four years.” Fernandes added that the resilience and fortitude of the Rwandan people made this possible. In conclusion, he quoted the famous words of His Excellency, President Paul Kagame ,” We cannot turn the clock back, nor can we undo the harm caused. but we have the power to determine the future and to ensure that what happened never happens again.” Rwanda Renaissance is laying great stress on promoting ” accessible tourism “. In April this year, a delegation of visually impaired boys came to Rwanda from 04 -to 09 April when they gave a series of commemorative choral performances during Kwibuka 24. The success of that mission has promoted Fernandes to now plan a Delegation of visually impaired girls who will give a series of dance performances in August this year.

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StayWell Holdings and Prince Hotels launch The Prince Akatoki in Japan

StayWell Holdings and Prince Hotels have announced the launch of a new luxury hotel brand offering – The Prince Akatoki – which will target the international market (outside of Japan) and complement the brands already operated by StayWell and Prince Hotels. Prince Hotels has agreed that StayWell Holdings will be assigned the rights to use The Prince Akatoki as the 5-star brand for future global development opportunities. Simon Wan, President and Director of StayWell Holdings said,” The Prince Akatoki will provide travellers with an opportunity to experience luxury services and amenities expected of a 5-star hotel brand reflecting certain elements of Japanese refined hospitality and culture. Japanese hospitality is renowned for service, tranquillity, and its peerless aesthetic. This is precisely what The Prince Akatoki will deliver. For international travellers, it offers a unique and authentic Japanese flavour.” “The travellers we anticipate as guests of The Prince Akatoki brand are those actively seeking high quality services and amenities when visiting from gateway cities worldwide, with a specific focus on London, New York, Singapore, Bangkok, Mumbai, Hong Kong and Shanghai,” he said. “Customers in Japan are familiar with the Prince brand, so they will easily recognise the new brand when they are looking for a hotel overseas. For travellers who have not yet experienced Prince Hotel brands, The Prince Akatoki will be their first brand experience, and will build positive sentiment and greater brand awareness globally, whilst increasing inbound tourism in Japan,” Wan said.

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Cathay Pacific celebrates 10 years of operations from Chennai to Hong Kong

Cathay Pacific Airways recently celebrated its 10th year of passenger flight operations between Chennai and Hong Kong. Since flights were launched in 2008, more than 600,000 passengers have travelled from Chennai and approximately 39,000 tons of cargo have been carried. Cathay Pacific began passenger flights with four weekly flights in 2008 operating an Airbus 330-300 aircraft. In 2010, to meet the increasing demand from both business and leisure travellers, the airline expanded to daily operations. The airline has also launched bonus Asia Miles for every round trip or one way journey from Chennai to North America, Asia or Australia between June 15 and 15 August 2018. Rajesh Menon, Cathay Pacific’s Regional Sales and Marketing Manager – South Asia,  says, “We are delighted to have completed 10 successful years of operations from Chennai. We began with 4 weekly flights and in a few years were able to expand to daily flights due to the great potential Chennai offered. Our flights have catered to a wide segment of passengers that include corporate travellers, holiday makers, VFR traffic and students, travelling to the popular destinations of Hong Kong, San Francisco, Tokyo, Shanghai, Sydney to name a few. Chennai continues to hold tremendous opportunity with the growing economic developments in the state. We are excited about our future prospects and look forward to offering our passengers a life well-travelled with our products and services.”

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PADI awards MTDC’s Tarkarli Resort as five-star dive resort for scuba diving 

The Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) has awarded Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation Tarkarli Resort as a five-star dive resort  for scuba diving in Maharashtra concerning the safety of tourists. The organisation has granted accreditation to scuba diving centers across 180 countries and India is one of them. Witnessing the demand for adventure sports, Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) is promoting Tarkarli as a scuba diving and snorkeling destination for tourists, where they can enjoy various diving activities including wreck diving and wall diving. Jaykumar Rawal, Minister of Tourism &(EGS), Government of Maharashtra and Scuba divers of MTDC Tarkali Resorts received this prestigious award in the presence of Vijay Gautam, (IAS), Principal Secretary, Department of Tourism and Culture, Government of Maharashtra & MD, MTDC.

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Indian tourist arrivals to Turkey rises 95% in Q1

Indian Tourist arrivals to Turkey saw an increase of 95 per cent in the first four months of 2018 in comparison to the same period of 2017. While 19,803 Indians visited Turkey from January to April last year, this figure rose to 38,471 in the same period this year. The first quarter of 2018 has seen a 32 per cent increase in number of international tourists visiting Turkey, as compared to the same period of 2017. The country is preparing to host 40 million international tourists by the end of 2018, which will be a record for the country. While Antalya, Istanbul, Mugla, Cappadocia and Izmir remain the top destinations in Turkey, by the end of 2018, 200000 Indian tourists are expected to visit Turkey. Indian arrivals to Turkey reached its highest in 2015, which is considered as one of the best year in tourism. Looking at the numbers, it is expected that the Indian market will leave behind 2015 figures, which will be an increase of 50 per cent.

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Ethiopian Airlines takes delivery of 100th aircraft to Addis Ababa

Ethiopian Airlines has taken delivery of its 100th aircraft, Boeing 787 Dreamliner, once again leading the way in fleet expansion and modernisation in Africa. As part of Ethiopian Corporate Social Responsibility commitments, the new aircraft has ferried medical equipment from the Seattle-based NGO, Direct Relief, to St Paulos Hospital in Addis Ababa. The shipment includes surgical stools and other medical supplies to be used for both teaching and patient care. Group CEO of Ethiopian Airlines, Tewolde GebreMariam, remarked, “It is an immense honour for all of us at Ethiopian to reach the milestone of 100 aircraft. This milestone is a continuation of our historical aviation leadership role in Africa and a testimony of the successful implementation of our fast, profitable and sustainable growth plan, Vision 2025. Over the years, Ethiopian has been investing heavily in fleet modernisation and expansion, which is one of the pillars of Vision 2025. Ethiopian was the first African Airline and second only to Japan to operate the B787 Dreamliner in 2012 and the first carrier in Africa to usher with the Airbus A350 XWB in 2016. Ethiopian was the first to avail jet service in the continent back in 1962, and operated the first African B767 in 1984, the first African B777-200LR in 2010, the first African B787-800 Dreamliner and B777-200 freighter in 2012 and the first African A350 in 2016 and the first African B787-9 aircraft in 2017. Ethiopian now operates one of the youngest and most modern 100 aircraft, with an average age of less than 5 years.

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ITC Grand Goa to soon open doors

ITC Hotels has acquired Park Hyatt Goa Resort & Spa in a public auction, and the property will now be known as ITC Grand Goa. The property will soon be formally open under the new owners. According to a mailer by ITC which owns and operates ITC Hotels, the sale of the property has been confirmed by Supreme Court of India, by judgement and order dated March 19, 2018. Under the judgement, ITC will be taking the possession of the property by September 19, 2018. The property is situated in Cansaulim, Goa.  

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Indonesia aims at 7 lakh tourists from India in 2018

Amid a significant increase in tourist traffic between the two countries in the last few years, Indonesia is aiming at 7 lakh tourists from India in 2018, its envoy Sidharto R Suryodipuro said. He added, “The number of Indian tourists to Indonesia last year was close to half a million people (4.85 lakh)” while the number of people travelling to India from the Southeast Asian country was about 40,000. “This year, we are targeting 7 lakh Indian tourists in Indonesia,” he said at an event titled ‘Pride and glory of Bali-Yatra’ (voyage to Bali) held in Kolkata, to celebrate the glorious maritime history of India and ancient trading links in Indonesia’s Bali. Claiming the diplomatic relationship between the two the nations at present to be “the closest in the last 70 years”, the envoy said the leaders of both the countries were looking to enhance people to people connectivity through tourism. “When Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi met the Indonesian President Joko Widodo in Jakarta, they discussed about expanding air travel between the two nations. Tourism is the easiest way to establish people to people connectivity. Especially in India and Indonesia, because of the growth of middle class, more and more people are now open to travelling,” he said. However, the envoy pointed out that the connectivity between India and Indonesia was not up to the mark and pitched for direct flight connectivity to support the rising tourist traffic as no Indian carrier flies to Indonesia presently. “We need more of regional connectivity and especially direct air connectivity between the two nations. A number of carriers in Indonesia fly to India directly but none of the Indian carriers fly to …

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