Discover the Unique Culture Adventures of Oman

first_imgDiscover the Unique Culture & Adventures of OmanDiscover the Unique Culture & Adventures of OmanSix Senses Zighy Bay has unveiled a stunning video to mark its ten-year anniversary. During the past decade, the award winning resort has been creating incredible out-of-the-ordinary experiences for guests who embrace the resort’s ethos and celebrate the unique attractions and dedicated service offered with Omani warmth.Set between the dramatic Hajar Mountains and the azure waters of Zighy Bay, the resort enjoys a spectacular, isolated location in Oman’s Musandam Peninsula, nestled on a mile-long sandy beach. Activities embracing the natural wonders include paragliding, mountain biking, dhow cruising, snorkeling, diving and fishing, promising visitors unforgettable adventures. Combining contemporary and traditional Omani architecture, the collection of one-bedroom villas, duplex two-bedroom villas, The Retreat and Beit Musandam – The Private Reserve each come with a private pool, 24-hour Guest Experience Makers (GEM) service and most are designed with an Arabian Summerhouse.To celebrate the launch of this new video, the resort is offering an all-inclusive package featuring the resort’s premiere accommodation, Beit Musandam. The welcoming four-bedrooms villa is the ideal spot for a group of friends or a family vacation to experience an Arabian palace of wonders. Complimentary perks include a round-trip transfer from Dubai International airport, speedboat or paragliding arrival experience, relaxing 60-minute Six Senses Signature massage, one-hour rejuvenating fitness or yoga session with a personal instructor, enjoying views of Musandam fjords with a private sunset dhow cruise, one time in-villa private barbecue dinner with a private chef and so much more.In conjunction with the unveiling of this new video, the contemporary fine dining restaurant Sense on the Edge, which re-opens in September, will introduce a brand new Kitchen Table night where guests can take front-row seats at the kitchen table, perfect for personal attention from the resort’s dedicated chefs, as they serve up a feast to remember at almost 1,000 feet (300 metres) above sea level.Those looking to simply unwind and relax can enjoy a refuge for mind and body at Six Senses Spa Zighy Bay which is committed to delivering integrated wellness experiences along with peace, tranquility, fitness and health.Aaron McGrath, general manager at Six Senses Zighy Bay said, “”We are thrilled to mark the ten year anniversary of Six Senses Zighy Bay with this captivating new video featuring the beauty of Oman and its unique culture. The timing of this new video aligns with the recognition of Six Senses by Travel + Leisure magazine as Best Hotel Brand in the World. The resort remains one-of-a-kind for not only Six Senses, but also for the hospitality sector in Oman and the wider Middle East region. We continuously redefine our resort with exceptional customer service, environmentally thoughtful projects and memorable dining alternatives.””For more information on Six Senses Zighy Bay and assistance with bookings, please visit www.sixsenses.com/resorts/zighy-bay/accommodation/specialty-villas, email reservations-zighy@sixsenses.com or call +968 26735558.Source = Six Senses Zighy Baylast_img read more

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Real Journeys 2017 Cruiseforacause raises 43700

first_imgReal Journeys 2017 Cruise-for-a-cause raises $43,700Real Journeys 2017 Cruise-for-a-cause raises $43,700The annual Real Journeys Cruise-for-a-Cause to Milford and Doubtful Sounds has raised a total of $43,700 for Forest & Bird and the Cancer Society (Otago and Southland Division).Forty-five Cancer Society supporters enjoyed the extremes on their Milford Sound Overnight Cruise last weekend. Their coach left Te Anau in warmth and sunshine – returning in heavy snow. They swam, kayaked and experienced the quiet serenity of Milford Sound in the afternoon and in the evening hit the “dance floor” on the Milford Mariner with live music and song.Marie Wales, Manager Supportive Care Services says that is the trademark of those involved in the Cancer Society. “They know how to enjoy life!”The Cancer Society will receive over $13,600 which will be used to train more volunteers and provide much needed resources for the support team, as demand for its services has increased 60% in the last two years.“It’s such a privilege to be involved in such a great fund-raising initiative, especially as you really get to spend some quality time with people who care about the work that we do. Your team made it a trip to be remembered and for that we are extremely appreciative,” says Marie.The Royal Forest and Bird Protection Society received almost $30,100 for its sold-out Doubtful Sound Overnight Cruise held in early September. Forest & Bird Chief Executive and former Green Party MP Kevin Hague gave a special presentation about the society’s long history to the seventy guests on board the Fiordland Navigator. It was Forest & Bird’s second successful Cruise-for-a-Cause, last year they went to Milford Sound. This year’s funds will be used to support more predator control.“It was an absolute privilege to visit Doubtful Sound, one of the few remaining wilderness areas left in New Zealand, and a timely reminder of the importance of protecting and restoring all of our wild places before it is too late,” says Kevin.Since 2015, Real Journeys has provided the first overnight cruise or final training cruise of the season at no cost (including dinner and breakfast) so that charitable or not-for-profit organisations can sell all the tickets and keep 100% of the proceeds. So far the initiative has raised over $100,000 for six organisations including the Yellow-Eyed Penguin Trust, Wakatipu High School Foundation and Queenstown Lakes Family Centre. Applications for next year’s Cruise-for-a-Cause will open in November.Source = Real Journeyslast_img read more

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Celebrate Valentines Day with AK

first_imgCelebrate Valentine’s Day with A&KCelebrate Valentine’s Day with A&KFor a truly romantic gesture this Valentine’s Day, treat your loved one – and yourself – to a ‘once in a lifetime’ customised travel experience from the luxury experts at Abercrombie & Kent. Rekindle the passion on a romantic adventure to far-flung destinations and some closer to home. Here are just a few ideas for lovers – and lovers of travel.Out of AfricaIn the spirit of the heartbreakingly romantic ‘Out of Afr editor@etbnews.globalica’, a safari is hard to beat for passionate adventure. Pick of the bunch for dreamy-eyed romantics is Kenya where vast landscapes, magical safari camps and huge herds of game set hearts aflutter. This is Africa’s famed big game country and it’s where, at the famous Masai Mara Game Reserve, you find the newly refurbished Sanctuary Olonana on a stretch of the Mara River where the final scene of the movie was filmed. Cherish show-stopping sunsets, hot air balloon rides and raw wilderness up-close.Our Suggested Journey? A&K’s ‘Wildlife & Warriors’ 11-day Private Journey, priced from $14,250 per person.CambodiaWatch dawn break over Angkor Wat and ramble through 900-year-old ruins with your beloved. Marvel at some of the most remarkable architectural and artistic accomplishments of the ancient world and delve into its epic history with a leading anthropologist. Explore the capital by tuk tuk and stop off in some of the country’s leading restaurants for a culinary adventure and see how a not-for-profit performing arts school is improving the lives of children, young adults and their families at a special performance. Wind down at sublime new island getaway Six Senses Koh Krabey and toast journeys shared.Our Suggested Journey? A&K’s ‘Wonders of Cambodia’ 10-day Private Journey, priced from $6,390 per person.Andean EscapeFor adventure travellers, South America surpasses expectations and to experience some of the world’s most arresting landscapes head to Bolivia. Explore the remote altiplano and high-altitude lakes, the glistening salt flats of Uyuni and the sparse lowland country on a one-of-a-kind journey rich with indigenous and colonial art and culture, unexpected religious relics and architectural gems. For the ultimate in romantic seclusion, book a deluxe Air Stream camper on the Uyuni salt flats which comes with its own guide and gourmet chef.Our Suggested Journey? A&K’s ‘Breathtaking Bolivia’ 12-day Private Journey, priced from $7,465 per person. Supplement applies for Air Stream camper.EgyptFollow in the footsteps of the ancients and the 19th century Grand Tourist on a journey through timeless Egypt where the welcome is warm and the attractions epic.  Kick things off in the marvellous capital, Cairo, where Four Seasons at the First Residence provides the perfect base for exploration of the Pyramids and Sphinx, the Egyptian Museum and the colourful souks. Heading south to Luxor, the luxurious Sanctuary Sun Boat IV awaits for a dreamy Nile cruise guaranteed to excite.Our Suggested Journey? A&K’s “Nile in Style’ 9-day Private Journey, priced from $6,575 per personIcelandNorthern Europe’s most talked about destination is a magnet for romance and adventure, and in any season. In the summer months, the Midnight Sun means long, dreamy days while winter brings mulled wine, open fires and the extraordinary Northern Lights. Raw landscapes are what Iceland does best with dramatic fjords, thermal fields, mountains, volcanoes, geysers and waterfalls at every turn and if adventure is sought, there’s everything from ice walks and glacier hikes to riding Icelandic horses, quad biking, snow-mobiling and whale watching.Our Suggested Journey? A&K’s ‘Land of Ice & Fire’ Private Journey, priced from $14,435 per person.MoroccoThe languid pace of Morocco’s Atlantic Coast and the ancient port town of Essaouira is treasured by romantics young and old. Checking in to luxury riad l’Heure Bleue Palais at the entrance to the medina means being perfectly positioned to wander the narrow alleyways, shop the souks and meander through the port watching the fresh catch being unloaded. The hotel’s rooftop pool is a winner and travellers seeking more active pursuits can surf, hike, horse ride, kite surf or enjoy a round of golf.Our Suggested Journey? A&K’s ‘Enchanting Essaouira’ 3-day Private Journey, priced from $1,125 per person.ItalyArguably the world’s most romantic destination and blessed with natural and designed beauty, Italy is a perennial honeymoon favourite. With so many extraordinary places to visit, it’s hard to select just one but Sicily is a good place to start. Uniquely positioned between Europe and Africa, it’s full of seductive landscapes, sandy beaches and ancient Greek temples plus the bustling cities of Palermo and stylish Syracuse. Bed down in glamorous digs like Grand Hotel Villa Igiea in Palermo and the timeless Belmond Grand Hotel Timeo in Taormina and settle in for romance aplenty.Our Suggested Journey? A&K’s ‘Splendours of Sicily’ 10-day Private Journey, priced from $11,485 per personMexicoSip a margarita in Mexico City, spice up your palate with a good dose of tamales and enchiladas or luxuriate with a Mayan-inspired spa treatment. These are just some of the reasons to cultivate close ties in Mexico. There are also, of course, incredible monuments, ancient ruins, colonial towns and villages aplenty plus a vibrant handicraft tradition and glorious beaches. Learn to cook the traditional Mexican way, savour the perfect mezcal, and discover why cacao is the food of the gods.Our Suggested Journey? A&K’s ‘Flavours of Mexico’ 10-day Private Journey, priced from $9,895 per personSlow boat in KeralaLife moves at a slower pace in southern India so take it down a notch on a romantic interlude in Kerala. In contrast to Rajasthan, and the north, where the cities are chaotic and the landscapes are dusty and parched, the lush greenery of the south is instantly soothing and the gentle tempo of Kochi sheer bliss. Float down the backwaters on a converted rice barge and discover romance afresh with your own private chef on hand to dish up authentic Kerala cuisine and a friendly crew on hand.Our Suggested Journey? A&K’s ‘Essential Kerala’ 9-day Private Journey, priced from $3,615 per personOutback meets ReefA little closer to home, Sal Salis Ningaloo Reef is a luxury beach-side safari camp on a remote stretch of Western Australia’s Indian Ocean coast. Loved up couples are assured a memorable adventure where the outback meets the reef snorkelling and swimming with whale sharks or humpback whales, manta rays and dolphins. Or exploring the surrounding landscapes in search of unique flora and fauna. The Honeymoon Tent provides privacy and private views of the beach and reef and a double hammock to laze the day away in.Our Suggested Journey? A&K’s ‘Pristine Waters of Ningaloo Reef’ 6-day Private Journey, priced from $4,785 per person.To book your A&K itinerary today or to enquire further please contact Abercrombie & Kent on 1300 590 317 or visit www.abercrombiekent.com.auSource = Abercrombie & Kentlast_img read more

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Punjab to pen down cultural policy with a focus on film tourism

first_imgTourism and Cultural Affairs Minister of Punjab, Navjot Singh Sidhu, recently presided over a brainstorming meeting with the prominent personalities of art, literary and cultural sectors at Punjab Bhawan in Chandigarh. The meeting aimed to connect youth with the rich heritage of Punjab, preserving Punjabi culture and giving a boost to the tourism sector in the state.After carefully listening to the viewpoints and suggestions put forwarded by all eminent personalities, the Minister assured that these would be incorporated in a strong cultural policy to be formulated soon. He also exhorted all to be the standard bearers in raising a robust cultural movement in the state.Showcasing Punjab as an ideal spot for the shooting of Hindi films, Sidhu said that, keeping in view this aspect as well as to give a boost to film tourism, a film city would be constructed in the state. The minister, underlining the importance of culture and tourism sectors, stated that rich and glorious cultural heritage can go a long way in popularising tourism sphere.He elaborated that Sri Durbar Sahib, Amritsar witnesses one lakh devotees on daily basis, so a circuit would be constructed to bolster religious tourism where all the religious places would be connected and top class arrangements would be made for the devotees. He also added that Punjab has scores of historical forts, memorials which would be made tourist destinations by forming their circuits.last_img read more

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Heritage Palace on Wheels debuts its voyage

first_imgThe first maiden voyage of Heritage Palace on Wheels (HPOW) reached Jaipur on December 30, 2017 from Delhi’s Safdarjung station at Gandhi Nagar with 28 tourists on board. On its first tour, HPOW had 27 domestic tourists and one foreign tourist from South Africa.This train ran in two itineraries, first three nights covering Golden Tringle – Delhi-Jaipur-Sawai Madhopur-Agra-Delhi and then four nights on Desert Triangle – Delhi-Churu-Bikaner-Jaipur-Agra-Dholpur-Delhi. It is ideal for weekenders and corporate executives.The train can also be booked for facilities like conferences, board meetings and even pre-wedding ceremonies. The tariff is now only 300 USD or INR 19000 per night per person.The Chief Minister of Rajasthan and Additional Chief Secretary, Department of Tourism and State Government had a big role in rolling out the tourist friendly policies for it to be a success.Pradeep Bohra, General Manager, HPOW, highlighted that both the train officials and the passengers were exhilarated over the maiden voyage and appreciated the efforts by Rajasthan Tourism Development Corporation (RTDC) and Department of Tourism for their contribution.last_img read more

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Lackluster Spending Tilts Against Homebuying Freddie

first_img in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing Agents & Brokers Confidence Existing-Home Sales Fixed-Rate Mortgage Freddie Mac HARP Home Prices Home Sales Housing Affordability Investors Lenders & Servicers Mortgage Rates Pending-Home Prices Processing Refinance Service Providers Treasury Yields 2011-11-21 Ryan Schuette Mortgage giant “”Freddie Mac””:http://www.freddiemac.com/ tied weak homebuyer demand to a drop in consumer expenditures in an outlook it released Monday.[IMAGE]The GSE captured a look at the financial mood of consumers by releasing the “”U.S. Economic and Housing Market Outlook””:http://www.freddiemac.com/news/finance/docs/Nov_2011_public_outlook.pdf, which makes forecasts according to key economic indicators that it uses.The outlook indexed overall economic health for the nation, finding a small uptick by domestic aggregate demand as it climbed to 3.6 percent ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô the second largest gain over the last five years.Home prices also declined by 25 percent on a cumulative basis from 2006 to 2011, according to Freddie, which tallied up results with the Freddie Mac House Price Index.Somewhat contrary to the national mood, Freddie found investments in buildings, equipment, and software belting [COLUMN_BREAK]upward by 14 percent over the third quarter, with residential investment picking up for the second consecutive quarter.In line with still record-low mortgage rates, the outlook recorded 10-year Treasury yields hovering at around 2 percent, with the benchmark 30-year fixed-rate mortgage correspondingly staying near 4 percent over the last several weeks.The biggest news from the outlook stems from a projection made by the office of Freddie’s chief economist, “”Frank Nothaft””:http://www.freddiemac.com/bios/exec/nothaft.html, who said that recent modifications to the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) could drive single-family originations up by $200 billion to $300 billion. “”Allowing eligible borrowers to refinance (who otherwise may face a limited opportunity to refinance without paying down a significant chunk of their loan principal) and obtain substantially lower interest rates and monthly payments, will likely reduce defaults, ease distressed sales in markets, and provide needed cash flow to borrowers,”” he said in a “”statement””:http://freddiemac.mediaroom.com/index.php?s=12329&item=88481. “”This latter effect can, in turn, support additional consumption spending and be beneficial for economic growth in the long run,”” Nothaft added. He cited the experiences of borrowers who refinanced their Freddie Mac-backed mortgages over the course of the third quarter, saying that these borrowers would save approximately $2,500 in interest payments over the first year following their refinance. November 21, 2011 421 Views center_img Lackluster Spending Tilts Against Homebuying: Freddie Sharelast_img read more

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Prices for Existing Homes See Strongest Gains in Six Years

first_img Existing-home sales rose to 4.62 million at a seasonally adjusted annual rate in April from a downwardly revised March rate of 4.47 million, the “”National Association of Realtors””:http://www.realtor.org/ (NAR) said Tuesday. Economists had forecast the April sales pace would be 4.66 million. [IMAGE]The median price of an existing home climbed 10.1 percent to $177,400 from $161,100 in April 2011, the strongest year-to-year gain since January 2006. The median price in April reached its highest level since July 2010 when it was $182,100.The inventory of homes for sale in April rose to 2.54 million, the highest level since last November, bringing the months’ supply of homes on the market to 6.6.The 10.0 percent year-over-year gain in the sales rate was the strongest since October when sales were up 14.0 percent year-over year.Distressed homes ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô foreclosures and short sales sold at deep discounts ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô accounted for 28 percent of April sales (17 percent were foreclosures and 11 [COLUMN_BREAK]percent were short sales), down from 29 percent in March and 37 percent in April 2011, NAR said.Foreclosures sold for an average discount of 21 percent below market value in April (compared with an average discount of 19 percent in March), while short sales were discounted 14 percent in April compared with 16 percent in March.The months’ supply of existing homes for sale remains well below the July 2010 cyclical peak of 12.4, which had been the highest level since 1982. Inventories tracked by NAR fell 20.3 percent below their year ago level, although anecdotal evidence suggests there is still a large shadow inventory of homes available for sale, especially bank-owned properties. Regionally, existing-home sales rose in April in every region of the country led by a 5.1 percent month-over-month increase in the Northeast, where sales were up19.2 percent over April 2011. Sales rose 4.4 percent over March in the West (a 7.3 percent year-over-year gain), 3.5 percent in the South (6.5 percent year-over-year) and 1.0 percent in the Midwest (14.4 percent year-over-year).The median price of an existing home rose month-over-month and year-over-year in all four regions. At $256,600, the median price of an existing home reached its highest level since August 2010. The median price of an existing home in the South rose to $153,400, the highest level since July 2010 and the median price of an existing home in the West rose to $221,700, also the highest since July 2010.The year-over-year price gain in the West, 15.9 percent, was the strongest since November 2005. The annual increase in the Northeast was the first since last June.The median price of an existing home climbed 10 percent to $177,400 from $161,100 in April 2011, the strongest year-to-year gain since January 2006. in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing Share Prices for Existing Homes See Strongest Gains in Six Yearscenter_img Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Existing-Home Sales Home Prices Home Sales Investors Lenders & Servicers National Association of Realtors Processing Service Providers 2012-05-22 Mark Lieberman May 22, 2012 420 Views last_img read more

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September Job Growth Beats Forecasts at 248000

first_img Share Bureau of Labor Statistics Jobs Unemployment 2014-10-03 Tory Barringer October 3, 2014 601 Views Updated.After giving a soft performance in August, the labor market came back strong last month, knocking the national unemployment rate down below the 6.0 percent mark for the first time in more than six years.According to the latest monthly figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the nation added 248,000 jobs in September, bringing employment growth back above 200,000 after an unexpected drop in August.Economists surveyed by the Wall Street Journal predicted the economy would add 215,000 jobs last month.Meanwhile, payroll figures for July and August were revised upward to 243,000 and 180,000, respectively, tacking on an additional 69,000 jobs to their original estimates. Over the last year, monthly job growth has averaged 213,000.With the latest estimate, the government puts the U.S. unemployment rate at 5.9 percent, its lowest since July 2008.Despite the good news in September’s report, the headline numbers mask a few less encouraging movements, the biggest of which is a drop in the labor force participation rate to 62.7 percent—the lowest rate in decades—as more Americans abandoned their search for work. Among that group—totaling more than 2.2 million—nearly 700,000 gave up looking because they don’t believe there are any jobs available for them.Factoring in those populations and the 7.1 million Americans employed part-time for economic reasons, BLS put the “U-6” unemployment rate at 11.8 percent for September, double the headline figure.Despite those problem signs, Friday’s report all but ensures leaders at the Federal Reserve will vote to end the central bank’s bond buying program in their next meeting later this month.Other indicators in the September report were mixed. After months of flatness, the average workweek for private employees squeaked up to 34.6 hours. At the same time, average hourly earnings slipped a cent to $24.53.center_img in Data, Featured, Government, News September Job Growth Beats Forecasts at 248,000last_img read more

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Malindo Air made a sunset touch down at Brisbane A

first_imgMalindo Air made a sunset touch down at Brisbane Airport on Saturday – the 30th airline now flying into BNE.The airline has commenced daily flights to/from Kuala Lumpur via Denpasar, Bali, operating a Boeing 737-900 aircraft, seating 12 business class and 150 economy class passengers, adding over 130,000 seats annually between Queensland and Malaysia.Malindo Air CEO Chandran Rama Muthy said, “We are delighted to launch the only service between Kuala Lumpur and Brisbane with a stop in the famous island of Bali.“There are immense opportunities for future growth associated with this new connectivity as Brisbane is an important commercial business hub and tourism gateway to one of Australia’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Great Barrier Reef, and the beautiful Gold Coast.“We will certainly work on building beneficial relationships with Malaysian and Australian tourism players and Brisbane Airport Corporation, to ensure the success of this new route.”Brisbane is the second Australian city to receive Malindo Air’s B737NG aircraft. Malindo Air currently operates 10 weekly flights to and from Perth in Western Australia.The daily flights will depart BNE at 7.15am each day, arriving in Denpasar (Bali) at 11:45am before arriving Kuala Lumpur at 3pm local time.IMAGE Malindo Air arrives at BNE on 1 April 2017/Lance Broad BrisbaneMalindo Airlast_img read more

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Fijis Nanuku Auberge Resort has become a member o

first_imgFiji’s Nanuku Auberge Resort has become a member of the Kiwi Collection, the world’s largest and most diverse curated collection of luxury hotels and resorts.The Kiwi Collection encompasses 2200 properties in 130 countries and also powers and manages Visa’s global hotel program for its affluent cardholders. This means that consumers using a Visa premium card and booking hotel stays through the Visa Luxury Hotel Collection receive valuable benefits at 900 of Kiwi Collection’s 2200 hotels.Announcing the development, Nanuku Auberge Resort’s general manager Sascha Hemmann said guests booking a standard room rate at the resort would receive an automatic room upgrade on arrival and qualify for an 8.00 am check-in and late 6.00 pm check-out.“We look forward to welcoming Kiwi Collection members and showing them our special piece of paradise here in Fiji.” hotels & resortsKiwi Collectionluxurylast_img read more

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Etihad Airways has posted its best operational on

first_imgEtihad Airways has posted its best operational on-time performance (OTP) results since 2009 with the airline recording network punctuality of 82 per cent for flight departures and 86 per cent for arrivals in 2017.OTP is calculated on actual flight arrival and departure times within 15 minutes of the published schedule, and takes into consideration a variety of external factors including weather disruption and airspace congestion.OTP for departures at the airline’s Abu Dhabi hub was 79 per cent, and 89 per cent for arrivals.Overall, the airline improved its network departure punctuality in 2017 by three percentage points over the previous year. airlinesEtihadlast_img

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asiaCostsaver

first_imgasiaCostsaver Demand for Costsaver’s ‘Guided Independent’ style of touring has prompted the brand’s expansion for 2019 with the launch of its brand new Asia program.Already taking independent and value-conscious touring customers right across Europe, North Africa, USA, Canada and South America, Costsaver’s inaugural Asia program serves seven new countries – Japan, China, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, India and Hong Kong – from just $206 per day. “We would like to thank our valued agent partners for enthusiastically embracing the Costsaver brand and helping us to build what is now a robust, standalone travel company, with a bright future ahead,” said Matthew Cameron-Smith, Costsaver Managing Director. “There is real appetite from the ‘Ready to Go’ value traveller, which has opened up a whole new audience to the touring sector and is creating an unbeatable opportunity for the trade. We’ve responded to the incredible demand by expanding into new destinations with each year of operation, and we’re very excited to be opening up Asia to the Guided Independent Traveller for the very first time in 2019.” Costsaver’s value tours cover all the essentials, such as hand-picked accommodation, quality transport, city tours and plenty of meals. The rest is then left up to the traveller, so that they can tailor their own personalised dream holiday – either choosing to enjoy a selection of Costsaver’s hand-crafted Optional Experiences or simply uncovering the destination their own way. The new Costsaver Asia value tours include: Japan Discovery (10 days) – Visiting Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka, this is the perfect trip for clients who wish to visit Japan’s top cities, whilst also ticking off iconic sights such as Mount Fuji and Hiroshima along the way. Priced from $4,925* per person. Vietnam and Cambodia Adventure (14 days) – Combines a beach stay in Nha Trang with visits to Vietnam and Cambodia’s iconic cities; Hanoi, Hoi An, Ho Chi Minh City and Siem Reap in Cambodia. This trip is the perfect option for clients who want some relaxation time amidst city sightseeing, culture and history. Priced from $3,395* per person. Iconic Thailand (nine days) – Ideal for clients who want to see the sights of the rural ‘Golden Triangle’ whilst also ticking off Thailand’s buzzing cities. Beginning in Bangkok and culminating in Chiang Mai, clients will see the rural countryside landscapes of Thailand, as well as its cultural hubs. Priced from $2,095* per person. Wonders of China (10 days) – Visiting the main cities of China including Shanghai, Xi’an and Beijing, with all internal flights included, clients will get a taste for the ancient history of China and the iconic sites which make the country a bucket list destination for many. Priced from $3,075* per person. MINI STAY: Hong Kong Highlights (four days) – Can be booked as a standalone tour, or as an extension to any Costsaver trip; clients will spend three nights exploring this popular stopover destination more deeply. A single-centre experience, clients can leave their luggage and explore with an expert at the helm. Priced from $825* per person. Highlights of India (10 days) – Clients can go tiger spotting in Ranthambore National Park, and explore the majesty of Rajasthan and India’s bustling city of Delhi, culminating in a visit to Agra. Priced from $2,395* per person. Highlights of India with Varanasi (12 days) – This itinerary offers clients the opportunity to experience life on the banks of the River Ganges, with an included visit to Varanasi, alongside tiger spotting in Ranthambore, and visits to Rajasthan, Delhi and Agra. Priced from $3,450*per person. last_img read more

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cruiseelearningtraining

first_imgcruisee-learningtraining Yesterday, Scenic launched its new global e-learning platform yesterday – Agent Academy – providing custom built product training courses for travel agent partners across its group of brands – Scenic Luxury Cruises and Tours and Evergreen Cruises and Tours.“This new global training platform has been developed in conjunction with key agents in Australia to provide a central point for detailed product training and updates,” said Emma Davie, Director Trade Sales and Commercial Partnerships Scenic.“[The] portal is a valuable new industry tool, offering quick, easy to complete courses on a continuing basis to assist agents better understand and sell our product portfolio, enabling them to broaden their knowledge and better service their clients’ needs.Four courses are available immediately with others rolled out throughout the year.As a launch incentive for agents to experience the Agent Academy, Scenic is offering $1000 Scenic Rewards points to the first consultant in each Australian state to complete the four launch courses by 28 February 2019. The next 50 to complete the courses will receive $100 Scenic Rewards points.last_img read more

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Although the defense has given up some big plays i

first_imgAlthough the defense has given up some big plays in each of the last three weeks, they’ve also made big plays – in crucial situations.I don’t believe the clock has struck midnight for the Cardinals, but they are at a crossroads. At the end of last season, I wrote that my expectations are high for this team. They still are. Now is not the time to jump off the bandwagon. – / 19 The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact There was some good news. The running game showed signs of life – namely Powell and Kolb – combining for 136 of the Cardinals 182 rushing yards. The toughest thing to swallow about this one is knowing the Bills limped into University of Phoenix Stadium having allowed 97 points in their last two games, and weren’t even competitive last week (a 45-3 beat down in San Francisco). This should have been a get well game for the Cardinals. The good news is – despite back to back losses – the Red Birds are still tied for first place in the NFC West. The bad news is their confidence has to be shaken, their starting quarterback is in a lot of pain, and D’Anthony Batiste and Bobby Massie are still their starting tackles (at least as of Sunday evening). Next Sunday they visit the Minnesota Vikings, who also lost on Sunday. Like the Cardinals, the Vikings are off to a surprising 4-2 start, but have also proven to be vulnerable. The Cardinals need to remember last year’s 34-10 loss at the Metrodome that dropped them to 1-4. They also need to remember that while it’s practically impossible to play a completely perfect game physically in this league, mentally there is absolutely no margin for error. Losses hurt in the NFL. Every last one of them.But the Cardinals 19-16 overtime defeat to the Bills on Sunday stings just a little bit more than most do. There’s plenty of blame to go around, but why point fingers?Why point fingers at an offensive line that features the two worst tackles in football? If you don’t believe me, just ask Kevin Kolb’s mouth and ribs — which have doubled as punching bags in the last two games. center_img Top Stories Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Oops. I was trying to avoid the blame game. But seriously, is it too much to ask Reagan Maui’a, who only played because Anthony Sherman was out, to not spike the ball after a seven-yard catch near midfield? I know Maui’a only has a handful or so career catches, but when your offense struggles to move the ball forward, you’re supposed to embrace all the positive yards you can. After the game, Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt called the delay penalty, “stupidity.” That was a lot more G-rated than what the TV cameras caught him saying to Maui’a during the game.There were also the usual suspects — dropped passes, poor run blocking (as usual), a misread between Kolb and running back William Powell on the play where Kolb got knocked out of the game and bad reads by both Kolb and John Skelton which resulted in interceptions.I hate to throw Jay Feely under the bus, especially since his 61-yard field goal with 74 seconds left in regulation tied things up, but it’s tough to not lose sleep after a missed 38-yard field goal that would’ve won it — although Feely is convinced the kick was tipped after a low snap. LaRod Stephens-Howling’s drop on a screen pass came right before Skelton’s game deciding pick. 0 Comments   Share   last_img read more

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So even though they never led in the game when th

first_imgSo even though they never led in the game, when the Cardinals had the ball in the final minutes down by just two, there was no doubt on the home sideline that they would take the lead and, maybe, steal a game they didn’t deserve.“I thought we felt we would win the game the entire game, even after we turned it over on downs on the last drive,” QB Carson Palmer said. “There is a lot of belief in that locker room, a lot of trust in each other. We don’t ever feel that we are out of it.”Palmer went on to say that sometimes games like this can be a “blessing in disguise,” as it will give them a chance to respond to the kind of adversity that was bound to present itself at some point this year. While this loss puts a damper on the early part of their season, at 3-1 there is still plenty of football left to be played.And chances are there will come another time, be it in Glendale or elsewhere, where the Cardinals are in need of some late-game heroics in order to come away with a victory. Like Sunday, when it ultimately did not work out, they’ll have confidence that they will be able to get the job done.As center Lyle Sendlein said, they’re going to have to. 0 Comments   Share   Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires “One-hundred percent, we always believe it,” he said. “I think that’s the first time in a game like that we haven’t pulled it out.“So that’s something we’ll all just have to have a little more belief that we can do it. I think everyone at that time did believe we were going to. Sometimes that’s half the battle.” – / 27 Arizona Cardinals running back David Johnson (31) can’t make the catch on fourth down as St. Louis Rams cornerback Janoris Jenkins (21) defends the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 4, 2015, in Glendale, Ariz. The Rams won 24-22. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri) Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact In a way, it seemed like despite all the self-inflicted wounds and mistakes Sunday, the Cardinals had the Rams exactly where they wanted them. With less than two minutes remaining, they had the ball at the St. Louis 43 yard line facing a second and two. A game-winning field goal attempt — at worst — seemed like a foregone conclusion.Then Carson Palmer’s swing pass to David Johnson was batted down by the Rams’ Robert Quinn, Palmer missed an open Jaron Brown down the field and, on fourth down, Palmer again threw incomplete while looking for Johnson.Arizona’s offense never touched the ball again.“Those type of games we’ve won for two years — it’s the first one that we’ve lost like that and it’s hard to swallow because of the fact that we have won so many in the fourth quarter here the last two years,” the coach said Monday. “I think we just anticipated we’d make the play to win this one and we didn’t get it done.”Arizona entered the game with a 15-3 record at UofP Stadium under Arians, with many of those victories requiring some late-game magic. Last season, the Cardinals needed fourth quarter rallies to beat the San Diego Chargers, Philadelphia Eagles and St. Louis Rams. The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo TEMPE, Ariz. — In a game full of disappointing developments, perhaps the one that tops the list is the most obvious one of them all: the Arizona Cardinals did not win.No, the Cardinals fell to the St. Louis Rams Sunday at University of Phoenix Stadium by a score of 24-22. It’s not that the Cardinals necessarily deserved to win the game, mind you, just that it seems like under head coach Bruce Arians, the team has always found a way to win close games at home. Top Stories Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and sellinglast_img read more

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Derrick Hall satisfied with Dbacks buying and se

first_img Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Arians dropped a bombshell in his daily press conference on Monday when he told reporters that the 60-yard reception Green Bay QB Aaron Rodgers completed to Jeff Janis on 4th-and-20 to keep the Packers’ drive alive and set up a game-tying Hail Mary pass in the playoffs last season was not Bethel’s fault, but somebody else’s due to a blown coverage.“He got blamed for it, but he wasn’t even in that coverage,” Arians said.Even so, Bethel understands that he will garner a lot of attention from opposing offenses.“After last year, being target practice for guys, knowing that they were going to come at me, I think that really did help me,” he said. “When you’re playing (opposite) a five-time (Pro Bowler) like Pat, they’re going to throw at you and you’ve got to realize they are going to make plays on you. You just have to come back and make the plays that you can when they come to you and not be so worried about what happened.”Bethel was keenly aware of the motivational message Arians was sending during the first three weeks of training camp, but he was also listening to the messages his body was sending him.“This isn’t something I can rush,” he said of his foot injury. “If I’m hurting I’m hurting. If I can’t play I can’t play. You don’t want to rush it back and seriously re-injure it to where I couldn’t even play in the season. It’s been nice being able to take my time and still go out there and do what I need to do; try to be in shape for when I do come back.” Your browser does not support the audio element. Less than two weeks into camp, Arians consulted the coach’s handbook of motivational tactics and threw down the gauntlet for all to hear.“It’s Brandon’s job right now,” he said. “You can’t win it if you’re not practicing.”Bethel is practicing now, so the narrative has changed. When asked Monday if there was enough time left before the season opener (three weeks) for Bethel to reclaim the starting role that was supposed to be his, Arians nodded.“There’s no doubt,” he said. “There’s plenty of time.“With him coming back this summer, and looking as good as he looked yesterday, that will be a nice battle going on the rest of the way.”Bethel has only been practicing for two days. He still has to show that his foot has fully healed and he still has to prove that he stayed buried in the playbook and the film room during his absence.When the Cardinals signed him to a three-year, $15 million extension in December that included $9 million in guaranteed money, they didn’t do so lightly. They did so with the idea he would start opposite Patrick Peterson, especially with Jerraud Powers having departed in free agency. LISTEN: Justin Bethel, Cardinals’ cornerback GLENDALE, Ariz. — You could see this story arc developing in July.Cardinals cornerback Justin Bethel was supposed to be ready for the start of training camp following offseason foot surgery, but a setback landed him on the PUP list. Coach Bruce Arians needed a way to hasten Bethel’s return and along came third-round draft pick Brandon Williams, a guy with just one year of experience at the position, but a guy with obvious athletic ability, limb length and Bethel-like speed. Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelocenter_img 0 Comments   Share   Like Arians, Bethel believes there is enough time to reclaim the starting job — if he ever really lost it.“All this time I had off, it gave me time to watch a lot of film and study things and see techniques. Now it’s just going out there and implementing it,” he said. “I think I’ll be able to show what I need to show in that amount of time. Hopefully, they see what they need to see.”Follow Craig Morgan on Twitter – / 21 A sixth-round pick out of Presbyterian in 2012, Bethel excelled immediately on special teams where he has made the Pro Bowl each of the last three seasons. It has taken more time for him to develop at corner, but last season’s four starts (including playoffs) provided the training ground to launch the next phase of his career.“I watched a lot of the plays, especially the big plays I gave up last season,” Bethel said. “Most of the big plays I gave up is because I saw the receiver relax and so I relaxed and then the quarterback gets free and he’s running free — little techniques that I was doing that were not helping me out. I’m trying to refine my game in that area.”Arians liked what he saw from Bethel last season. He believes Bethel has all the physical tools to play the position, but he needs to believe that Bethel has mastered the mental side of the game.“Just the bravado that goes with a corner — going out and jumping in somebody’s face and covering him; getting beat and shaking it off,” Arians said. “He struggled last year thinking he let the team down if somebody caught a pass on him. It bothered him. They’re going to catch passes on you because they’re going to throw a hell of a lot of them at you. Just come back and battle.” Cornerback Justin Bethel during training camp Aug. 21. (Photo by Adam Green/Arizona Sports) Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

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Top Stories

first_img Top Stories Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Carson Palmer walks off the field in the Arizona Cardinals’ loss to the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday, Nov. 27, 2016. (Associated Press) Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo It’s simple math for the Arizona Cardinals now. If they beat the Washington Redskins next Sunday at home, their playoffs hopes will still be alive. If they lose that game, it’s sayonara season.The Cardinals started better on Sunday in Atlanta. They finally scored on their opening drive, they competed and their offense showed signs of life, but this was always going to be a tough matchup on the road against one of the NFL’s best offenses. A boatload of familiar problems including dropped passes, a dropped interception, penalties, the inability of the defense to sustain momentum gained by the offense, and special teams errors made the task too tall.center_img The Cardinals can’t worry about those myriad scenarios, however. All of their energy must be spent on defeating the Redskins or all else lacks significance. The odds are long that they will stage such a rally, especially when three of their final four games are on the road, including another date with the Seahawks.There is only a ray of hope that this season will not go down as the most disappointing season in Valley sports history, given the Cardinals’ preseason expectations.“Win next week,” coach Bruce Arians told Calvisi. “Let’s come to work and win next week. I still think we’re in the thick of it.”Follow Craig Morgan on Twitter – / 24 “We’ve got to find a way to play better,” defensive tackle Corey Peters told Paul Calvisi on the postgame show on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM. “We just didn’t do a good enough job, really in any phase.”The Cardinals’ 38-19 loss to the Falcons means they trail the Seattle Seahawks by three games for the NFC West crown. The Cardinals’ (4-6-1) wild-card deficit to the 8-3 New York Giants is even greater. The Cards are four wins behind the Giants for the NFC’s first wild card spot.In simpler terms, the NFC West and the top wild card spot are gone. Arizona will not earn either of those.That means Arizona’s target is Washington, the current wild card leader at 6-4-1. A win over Washington at University of Phoenix Stadium would pull the Cards within a game of the Redskins with four games left in the season, and give them the tiebreaker in head-to-head competition, the first criterion for breaking a deadlock between two clubs in wild-card scenarios.That doesn’t even account for the other wild-card hopefuls in the NFC mix, a few of which would still have better records than the Cardinals. Minnesota is 6-5 and already beat the Cards. Tampa Bay is 6-5, but the Cards own a tiebreaker over the Bucs after beating them early this season. Philadelphia will either be 6-5 or 5-6 after its game against Green Bay (currently 4-6) on Monday night. New Orleans is 5-6 and comes to Glendale on Dec. 18. Comments   Share   Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

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ShangriLa Hotels and Resorts and Singapore Airlin

first_imgShangri-La Hotels and Resorts and Singapore Airlines have come together to provide members of Golden Circle and KrisFlyer enhanced benefits. Named ‘Infinite Journeys’, the two much-loved and globally recognised travel brands now offer travellers around the world greater recognition and rewards, with the promise of new experiences for every journey with Shangri-La and Singapore Airlines.The partnership offers double rewards for Golden Circle and KrisFlyer members when they stay at Shangri-La, as well as enhanced benefits and recognition for elite members in both programmes when they fly with Singapore Airlines or stay with Shangri-La. Golden Circle Diamond and Jade members will enjoy an accelerated upgrade to KrisFlyer Elite Gold which gives complimentary access to Singapore Airlines’ airport lounges worldwide. PPS Club and KrisFlyer Elite Gold members will enjoy an accelerated upgrade to Golden Circle Jade membership. With Jade status, members can benefit from complimentary room upgrades to a choice of welcome amenities and more.Additionally, Golden Circle members can now redeem their GC Award points for KrisFlyer miles, which can be used for flight upgrades, or for award flights on over 30 airlines including Singapore Airlines and SilkAir. KrisFlyer miles can also be combined with cash to pay for Singapore Airlines and SilkAir flights online.KrisFlyer members can in turn redeem their miles for GC Award points. These points can be redeemed for a range of hotel benefits such as complimentary room nights, room upgrades and spa vouchers, as well as curated dinner and drink experiences – offered by ‘The Table from Golden Circle’, Shangri-La’s latest initiative and an industry leading food and drink programme – at all Shangri-La properties worldwide. Redeeming for hotel stays is yet another first for KrisFlyer, which has in recent years, widened its range of redemption options to include more non-flight choices for its members.“With Golden Circle we are focused on moving beyond the traditional loyalty model of offering customers the ability to earn and redeem points for rooms alone – to a more experiential platform which engages customers across the travel cycle and beyond.We are very excited about this strategic alliance with Singapore Airlines – one of the world’s leading travel brands – to continuously deliver more value to Golden Circle members,” said Shangri-La’s Chief Marketing Officer Steven Taylor. “This partnership not only allows KrisFlyer members access to Shangri-La hotels and resorts, what’s more the alliance will see both Singapore Airlines and Shangri-La leverage the synergies offered by both brands. We are pleased to present our members with extra attractive benefits and look forward to delivering more choice and excellence to our guests worldwide.”“We are excited to be working with Shangri-La Golden Circle to bring even more benefits to our PPS Club and KrisFlyer members. Through Infinite Journeys, we offer members from both programmes enhanced travel experiences beyond their flight with us. Members enjoy increased recognition and rewards when they fly with Singapore Airlines and stay at Shangri-La. We also continue to provide our members more ways for KrisFlyer miles to be used, both at home and when they travel,” said Singapore Airlines’ Senior Vice President Marketing Planning, Mr Tan Kai Ping.These benefits are now available to Golden Circle and KrisFlyer members as of 28 September 2016.last_img read more

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For those looking to make the most wonderful time

first_imgFor those looking to make “the most wonderful time of the year” even more special, the Caribbean and Mexico hotels and resorts of The Ritz-Carlton offer an array of invitingly festive experiences. With brand-new offerings such as a frankincense and myrrh manicure/pedicure, story time and s’mores by a beachside fire pit, and a romantic holiday hike for two – as well as tried-and-true traditions – travellers have many enticing options for enjoying the season with The Ritz-Carlton luxury hotels and resorts in Aruba, Cancun, Grand Cayman, Puerto Rico and St. Thomas.The Ritz-Carlton, ArubaThere may not be snow in Aruba, but there is plenty of sand along the stunning, divi-divi-tree-dotted beach at The Ritz-Carlton, Aruba. The beach resort has alluring, holiday-themed treatments at The Ritz-Carlton spa, including a Cranberry Pomegranate Body Treatment or Pumpkin Spice Hydrating Facial, as well as an Organic Cinnamon Manicure or Organic Peppermint Pedicure. For guests looking for the ultimate mashup of relaxation, poolside spa treatments include foot massages, cold-stone back massages and foot scrubs with Moroccan oil. Families that escape to the resort for the holidays can experience an island-style winter with a “sandman” competition on the beach for kids on 24 December, or can explore their creativity with a cookie-decorating competition. On 25 December, holiday art studio or gingerbread house decorating experiences offer guests a way to express their seasonal spirit.The Ritz-Carlton, CancunIn the truest spirit of the Christmas holiday, The Ritz-Carlton, Cancun, welcome and witness Santa arriving in the hotel’s atrium – including snow falling gently from the ninth floor to the fourth floor. Festive music and holiday treats will be on hand as Santa mixes and mingles with all the girls and boys who come to see him. Younger guests can also tap into their inner pastry-chef-to-be with gingerbread baking and decorating, and enjoy the fruits of their labours with iced cookies when the event is finished. The Ritz-Carlton, Grand CaymanArea residents and hotel guests are warmly invited to celebrate Festive Season at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman, enjoying treasured events which include Thanksgiving and Christmas feasts, the delightful traditions of Gingerbread Man Tea and Yule Log Making, and a fabulous New Year’s Eve Ball capped by fireworks. As an added highlight of the season — and especially for local residents and their seasonal visitors — the luxury resort will offer Turkey to Go, with full Thanksgiving Dinners able to be delivered to addresses within the Seven Mile Beach vicinity.The Ritz-Carlton, San JuanIn Puerto Rico, where the holiday spirit sizzles like the island’s famed enchanted rhythms and flavors, The Ritz-Carlton, San Juan features a beautiful and large Christmas tree decorated with handpainted masterpieces from the youngest guests. On 28 December, a family barbecue on the beach offer ladies and gentlemen an evening that pairs al fresco island culinary delights with ultra-relaxing, warm ocean breezes and a starry sky. Culminating the festive spirit of the season is the “Cirque del Caribe” experience on 31 December, where guests can ring in the New Year in Caribbean style, with live entertainment, high-energy carnival performances, a sumptuous buffet and fine cocktails – while younger guests can explore a playful corner with fun activities and a magician.The Ritz-Carlton, St. ThomasChristmas day adventuring is available for the guests who like to celebrate with immersive and engaging activities while staying with The Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas. Named for Christopher Columbus, who spent Christmas there 500 years ago, Christmas Cove offers spectacular snorkelling amid crystal-clear waters and can be reached by the hotel’s private 16-metre yacht Lady Lynsee. With Santa on the boat, plus festive treats and music, being on the water for Christmas day will prove to be the most memorable holiday to date. For those seeking a more intimate outdoor experience this holiday season, the resort’s newly introduced picnic experience for two makes for a deliciously luxurious trip to Virgin Islands National Park, which covers 60 percent of St. John and is famous for its diving, snorkelling and hiking trails.Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton ReserveDorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve’s line-up of intimate, thoughtful holiday experiences is a natural extension of the way its ambience invites travellers to embark on a voyage of discovery with each visit. This year, guests can choose to personalise their haven with a variety of holiday decorations to incorporate meaningful traditions into their stay. Each evening throughout Hannukah, a local rabbi will conduct the lighting of a menorah at Livingston Library. The entire family can enjoy “Storytime with S’mores” at Encanto Beach, with gooey treats melted over the fire pit. Santa is available to call the smallest guests to discuss their holiday experience, and whether they’ve been naughty or nice. Ladies and gentlemen of all ages can gather to watch for the resort’s ever-popular water arrival of Santa – wearing swim trunks but in full Santa style from the waist up – as he arrives via kayak, paddleboard, or kiteboard, before paddling to the beach to chat with his welcoming committee. The relaxing “Painting Party & Wine” event with resident artist Sofia Arsuaga at Mi Casa Bar helps guests give way to their creativity, or to simply let the holiday spirit inform their artistic expression as they sip on fine wines with like-minded travellers. On New Year’s Eve, relaxed, elegant and exciting experience features fireworks, champagne and music. La Cocina Culinary Center will offer a gingerbread house decorating experience for guests of all ages.Palm trees decorated with Christmas garland nightlast_img read more

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