Browse through 80 tours in Boomerangs new Australia NZ programs

first_img Travelweek Group Share Friday, December 2, 2016 << Previous PostNext Post >> Tags: Australia, Boomerang Tours, New Zealand, TravelBrandscenter_img Posted by MISSISSAUGA — Boomerang Tours, in partnership with AATKings, is spanning the breadth of Australia and New Zealand with the launch of its new 2017/18 programs.Featuring a wide range of Inspiring Journeys, Guided Holidays, Short Breaks and Day Tours, the brochure highlights an extensive product line that includes over 80 escorted itineraries.“This brochure marks a milestone in our partnership with AATKings,” said David Boigne, Vice-President Specialty products for TravelBrands. “Our dedicated and highly experienced Australia vacation planners will guide travel agents and their clients towards the most comprehensive travel arrangements to fulfill their needs. Whether it is an overnight in LAX, a stopover in one of the idyllic South Pacific islands or a unique and customized pre- or post-tour experience, we have it all and so much more.”The brochure can be ordered through Envoy or by emailing sales@travelbrands.com. Browse through 80+ tours in Boomerang’s new Australia & NZ programslast_img read more

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Plane carrying Canadians skids off runway in Guyana no major injuries

first_imgTags: Fly Jamaica, Plane Crash Friday, November 9, 2018 GEORGETOWN — Global Affairs says no Canadians were hurt when a Fly Jamaica airplane skidded off the runway at Guyana’s main international airport this morning.Spokesman Philip Hannan says 82 Canadian citizens were on board flight OJ256, which was travelling to Toronto.He says consular officials are ready to assist any Canadian impacted by the incident, which airline officials say took place less than 20 minutes after the plane took off from the Cheddi Jagan International Airport.Fly Jamaica spokesman Carl Bowan says the plane experienced a hydraulic failure emergency and quickly returned to the airport, only to overshoot the runway.He says two elderly passengers were taken to hospital.The airport has set up a hotline for family members looking for assistance and information. By: The Canadian Press Share Plane carrying Canadians skids off runway in Guyana, no major injuries << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

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2019 Trend Report Transformational travel and are those real followers or just

first_img Tuesday, January 15, 2019 Kathryn Folliott 2019 Trend Report: Transformational travel, and are those real followers, or just bots? This story originally ran in the January 10th, 2019 issue of Travelweek magazine. To get Travelweek delivered to your agency for free, subscribe here.TORONTO — The Canadian travel industry is fuelled year after year by huge volumes of ITC package sales to sun and sand destinations. So does that mean we’re immune to 2019’s travel trends? Not at all.Sun sells and so do all-inclusives. For the Canadian travel industry, these aren’t so much trends as iron-clad guarantees.But after years of fly n’ flop vacations, Mr. and Mrs. All-In might opt for a Mediterranean culinary vacation instead. They saw pics on Instagram and now they want to try it for themselves.A couple with two children and an annual booking for Florida can now afford that safari trip in Kenya since the kids left the nest.And an older luxury client who always gravitated to five-star hotels in Anguilla and St. Bart’s now finds herself travelling solo, and looking for a trip that offers something more, something inspirational.Beyond the beach, beyond the swim-up bars, there are major travel trends shaping the Canadian travel industry for 2019.Solo travel and women-only travel continue to be big, as is bleisure travel, as Millennials especially look to optimize their business trips with vacation days pre or post.And the very biggest factors shaping travel in 2019 are the desire for transformational travel, the overwhelming influence of social media and access as the new luxury.TRANSFORMATIONAL TRAVELThe quest for life-changing travel continues unabated and for 2019 the industry has taken the years-long trend for experiential travel to the next level with transformational travel.“Travel with experiences at its core was one of 2018’s major travel trends, but 2019 will take it even further,” say the researchers at Booking.com. “‘Doing’ will weigh equally with ‘going’, if not more, when it comes to travel reflection. For more than half of travellers (52%), experiences are now valued higher than material possessions.”Representing a new type of currency and means of personal fulfillment, 2019 will see travellers focus even more on adding purpose to their trips.Ulla Hefel Böhler, CEO of Insight Vacations, says Insight has drilled down on emphasizing transformational travel, enhancing many of its experiences on its journeys. “Whether this means connecting clients with local characters who really bring a destination to life or taking them to areas where they can see what sustainable development looks like, we proudly provide the value these experiences deserve,” says Hefel Böhler.At the UNWTO’s 7th Global Summit on Urban Tourism in October of this year, “memorable experiences” were brought up and positioned as a major shift in motivation for travellers, she adds.For CLIA, experiential travel has also evolved into ‘achievement travel’ as vacationers are looking for immersive, cultural experiences beyond sightseeing. Bucket lists have become more goal-oriented and cruise lines are meeting these demands, says CLIA, noting that cruise passengers can conquer Machu Picchu or complete culinary workshops hosted by Le Cordon Bleu chefs while sailing the high seas.More news:  Transat calls Groupe Mach’s latest offer “highly abusive, coercive and misleading”All of this makes travel in 2019 sound very earnest and grown up, and while that may be the goal for many, it’s not what some vacationers have in mind for their getaway.According to Booking.com’s research, 31% of travellers say they plan to visit a destination that makes them feel like a kid again. “We’ll see properties looking to add more childlike and playful touches such as ball pits and bouncy castles for adults to cater for a Millennial and Gen Z audience, who are the biggest groups who travel to feel like a child again.”350 MILLION+ POSTS FOR #TRAVEL – EVERY DAYInstagram posts are driving interest in travel around the world, so much so that on an average day, there can be close to 351 million posts with the tag #travel, says CLIA.“The impact that social media, especially Instagram, has on consumers and their decision-making process when looking to book travel and deciding on what destinations to visit is immense,” notes Insight’s Hefel Böhler.Social media cachet has become such a motivator for travel, it’s the number one trend cited in Virtuoso’s annual Luxe Report.Tim Morgan, Virtuoso’s Director, Business Strategy, Canada, says social media’s influence is unmistakable, as it drives travellers’ desire to find the most captivating backdrops and the best time of day for snapping images. It’s even impacting booking requests for Virtuoso advisers. “Clients are requesting on-site photography sessions to create Instagram-worthy content, including replicating shots they admired online. Virtuoso advisors are arranging themed photoshoots characteristic of destinations, such as wearing traditional geisha attire in Kyoto or ball gowns in Venice.”Anything that drives exploration and inspires travel bookings is a good thing, but it’s tough to truly connect with a destination when all you’re doing is uploading selfies and compulsively checking your social media feeds. No wonder there’s also an upswing in ‘unplugged’ travel, and news of tourism boards like Vienna, who cheekily pushed back on the selfie obsession with an anti-Instagram marketing campaign last fall.Peter J. Bates, President of Strategic Vision, says any company using influencers to promote their products and services needs to do their due diligence.Influencers now command high fees and their travel costs covered to share content with their followers, who may number in the millions, says Bates. “The drawback? There’s little visibility into what and who the influencer brings to the table. Unlike traditional publishers, influencers rarely provide useful data on their audience other than its size. Are they real travel consumers who are likely to book your product? Are they even real people or just bots? We need more transparency from influencers and less credulity from the people hiring them.”More news:  Consolidation in the cruise industry as PONANT set to acquire Paul Gauguin CruisesACCESS = LUXURYAccess is the new luxury, says CLIA. Travellers are setting their sights on destinations that were previously out of reach, some only accessible now by cruise ship: “They want to be among the first of their peers to experience destinations such as the Galapagos Islands and Antarctica.”People also want to explore their passions through hard-to-get bucket-list experiences, building on a years-long trend that shows no sign of slowing down, says Virtuoso’s Morgan. “Sports fans are asking for tickets to major events such as the Olympics, Super Bowl and Wimbledon. Art aficionados are inquiring about private tours of locales like the Vatican after hours,” says Morgan, who adds that requests are also on the rise from the company’s high-end clientele for private helicopter transfers to and from airports as well as from one city or resort island to another.That’s the upper end of the market. What about everyone else?No matter what the budget, off-peak season travel is rising in popularity too. Ignoring the fact that they too are part of the crowd, travellers are bemoaning the proliferation of – gasp! – other travellers in their destination, much to the bemusement of the travel industry.That beach that looked so secluded and private in the brochure may not be so private after all, and in their desire to create a more unique and customized travel experience, many world wanderers are going to great lengths to guarantee themselves a more crowd-free holiday, including opting in for off-peak getaways.Tourism boards have been promoting off-peak travel for years, and as concerns (and frustrations) about overtourism climb, travellers are increasingly willing to book around the high season crowds.DREAM DESTINATIONSAnd finally, what are the hottest destinations for 2019? Japan, Patagonia and Jordan are on G Adventures’ list. Lonely Planet names Sri Lanka, Germany, Zimbabwe, Copenhagen and Serbia’s youth and culture capital, Novi Sad. Top global destinations in the Canadian edition of the 2019 Virtuoso Luxe Report include Italy, South Africa and Australia. Meanwhile Slovenia and Colombia make the top 10 list of emerging destinations. Share << Previous PostNext Post >> About Latest Posts Kathryn FolliottEditor at TravelweekKathryn is Editor at Travelweek and has worked for the company since 1995. She has travelled to more than 50 countries and counts Hong Kong, Jerusalem, the Swiss Alps and the Galapagos Islands among her favourite destinations. Latest posts by Kathryn Folliott (see all) “They need to go where the bucks are”: Agents on ACTA partnership – April 18, 2019 As the cost of doing business climbs, host agencies, retail groups say they have options – April 4, 2019 As of 2021 Europe-bound clients will need to apply online for a visa waiver and pay a fee – April 3, 2019 Tags: 2019, Feature Story, Featured, Lists, Travel Trends Posted bylast_img read more

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Earn more STAR points win a vacation with Sunwings Blue Diamond promo

first_imgTags: Blue Diamond Resorts, Sunwing Travelweek Group TORONTO — Agents can earn 4X STAR Agent Reward points for the entire month of August when booking Blue Diamond Resorts with Sunwing.The promotion, which runs from Aug. 1-31, applies to all new bookings to Royalton Luxury Resorts, including Hideaway at Royalton Luxury Resorts, Planet Hollywood Hotels & Resorts, Grand Memories Resorts & Spa, Starfish Jolly Beach Resort, Starfish Halcyon Cove, Starfish Saint Lucia, CHIC Punta Cana, Grand Lido Negril Au Naturel All Suite Resort, Mystique Blue Boutique Suites, and Mystique Royal St Lucia.Travel window runs from Aug. 1, 2019 until April 30, 2020.To help agents secure their bookings, Sunwing is also offering exclusive perks for clients at select resorts, including reduced rates and 2 Kids Stay, Play and Eat FREE deals (does not include Blue Diamond Resorts properties in Cuba). Plus, clients can benefit from resort credits of up to US$600 as well as special group rates where the eighth adult travels free, for travel between Nov. 1, 2019 until Oct. 31, 2020.More news:  ‘Turn around year’ for TPI brings double-digit growthOn top of their earnings, each time an agent makes a booking at a participating resort they’ll be entered into a weekly draw for a chance to win a vacation for two to a select Blue Diamond Resorts property. Prizes include stays at Planet Hollywood Beach Resort Costa Rica, Royalton Punta Cana Resort and Casino, Royalton White Sands Montego Bay and Royalton Negril Resort and Spa. The more bookings an agent makes, the more chances they have to win.For more details go to sunwingagents.ca. Thursday, August 1, 2019 Earn more STAR points & win a vacation with Sunwing’s Blue Diamond promocenter_img Share Posted by << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

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US Embassy denies visa to terminally ill Costa Rican who wants to

first_imgNo related posts. There are days in which Alberto Caballero, 66, can stay awake for a few hours, but there are others when he sleeps most of the time. Caballero has relied on pain medication since he was diagnosed as terminally ill with cancer in April 2012.“This is unfair,” says his wife Xinia, a naturalized U.S. citizen, who takes care of him at their home in San Francisco de Dos Ríos, a suburb southeast of San José. “He is very old and sick and no man like him should be denied the right to spend his last days with his family.”Caballero’s three daughters and seven grandchildren live in the United States, but he has not been able to spend time with them since 1998 when he was deported back to Costa Rica.Last October, the U.S. Consulate in Costa Rica rejected his immigrant visa application because of his health status and his involvement in a “crime of moral turpitude” committed in 1987.Caballero is a Peruvian-born Costa Rican citizen who emigrated at age 16 to the United States, where he raised a family, owned a home, and started his own business. In 1987, he was convicted of a felony charge involving drug trafficking, and 11 years later, he was deported after a 1996 immigration law ordered the deportation of immigrants with past legal problems in the U.S.In 1987, he was issued a deportation waiver by the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), which allowed Caballero to stay in the United States, but in 1998, U.S. immigration authorities applied a retroactive law and started deportation proceedings against him.“My father was the central figure in our family and he was the glue that kept everyone together”, says his daughter Patricia Williams, who resides in California. “When my father left, our family fell apart. My mother had to sell off his business because she did not know how to run it.”Now, four times a day, Xinia changes the bandage around an open tumor in her husband’s hip. As the main caregiver, she helps him shower, dress, take his medications, and attend regular doctor’s appointments. Five months ago, doctors at San Juan de Dios Hospital in San José said there was no treatment available for him in Costa Rica and declared him terminally ill.  Xinia cries when she remembers the last time the family spent a Christmas together in 1997.“We have endured separation for many years and our dream is to be together again,” she says.In 2007, Caballero could not attend the funeral of his youngest daughter, Shirley, who died of cancer.After the most recent visa denial, Caballero’s only hope is to apply for humanitarian parole at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), which grants foreigners admission to the U.S. for compelling humanitarian reasons.“[The consul] has no idea how much his decision has affected our family,” says Williams.The U.S. Embassy in San José does not comment on specific visa cases, but it lists criminal histories as a reason for ineligibility when applying for an immigration visa. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

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Surfs up Caribbean beaches to see large waves over the weekend

first_imgCosta Rica’s Caribbean beaches in the province of Limón are expected to see waves up to 3.1 meters (10.3 feet) starting Friday and likely continuing through the weekend, the University of Costa Rica’s Center for Research in Marine Sciences and Limnology (CIMAR) reported.Oceanographer Omar Lizano said conditions producing tall waves likely would be caused by a high pressure system that originated in the northern Atlantic, and which will bring swells and strong gusts to Costa Rica.CIMAR’s forecast adds that waves on Saturday will slightly decrease to 2.9 meters (9.7 ft), but will build up again to 3 meters starting early Sunday.Beaches along Costa Rica’s northern Pacific also will see tall waves over the weekend, but experts say they will be smaller than those in the Caribbean.Waves in the northern region of Guanacaste will reach maximum heights of 2.1 meters (7 ft) at several beaches, including Bahía Salinas, Tamarindo and Sámara.Beaches along the central and south Pacific will have waves up to 2 meters (6.7 ft), mainly in Pavones, Quepos and Puntarenas. Waves along the coastline in the Gulf of Nicoya are expected to reach a maximum height of up to one meter (3.3 ft).Officials from the National Emergency Commission advised beachgoers to use caution, and they warned owners of small boats about choppy sea conditions.Experts also recommend beachgoers ask local residents about risks at beaches while visiting, including the presence of rip currents, swells and other conditions that could pose a risk. Facebook Comments Related posts:Big waves expected at Costa Rica’s central Pacific beaches this weekend Oceanographers forecast strong waves, rip tides along Costa Rica’s Pacific shores starting Thursday Big waves expected to hit Costa Rica’s southern Pacific beaches over the weekend Big waves expected at Costa Rica’s northern Pacific, Caribbean beacheslast_img read more

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Following legalization just 1 clinic signed up to offer IVF

first_imgRelated posts:Costa Rica welcomes first IVF baby after 16-year ban Dengue vaccine likely to be available at public hospitals next year Mandatory prices for medical procedures rankle public, politicians Number of obese Ticos has almost quadrupled in four decades The executive decree reinstating the right to in vitro fertilization, or IVF, in Costa Rica went into effect three months ago, but only one private clinic has applied and received authorization to perform the procedure here.Centro Fecundar, a clinic in Escazú which also operates in Panama, received the approval in June, according to Allan Varela, the Health Ministry’s director of health services. There are no other pending applications from private hospitals or clinics, Varela said, and the ministry has not received any other inquiries about the IVF authorization process.The ministry published the requirements for offering the fertility procedure on April 1, just a month after the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR) ordered Costa Rica to approve IVF using the legal framework outlined in an executive decree issued by President Luis Guillermo Solís in September.To obtain authorization to perform IVF, a clinic must comply with a series of requirements ranging from infrastructure to specialized physicians and equipment. Upon receiving a request for authorization, the Health Ministry has 30 days to conduct an inspection of the medical facility to verify compliance with all requirements, Varela said.Alexis Castillo Gutiérrez, president of Costa Rica’s Doctors and Surgeons Association, said he’s not surprised there has been little interest from private doctors and hospitals.“Implementing the procedure entails a serious investment in professional and technical staff as well as in infrastructure and equipment,” he said.Castillo noted that the government gave itself two years to get public hospitals prepared to offer IVF: proof that it’s no easy task.Lack of IVF professionalsThe lack of professionals qualified to perform the fertility procedure is one reason, Castillo said. The Doctors Association, the official licensing entity in Costa Rica, includes just 16 fertility specialists. Castillo said most stopped practicing IVF when the Supreme Court banned the fertility treatment in 2000.He also noted that IVF requires the involvement of other professionals, including microbiologists, lab technicians and nurses, who need special training in human reproduction that currently is not available at Costa Rican universities.Couples wishing to undergo an IVF procedure here must meet a series of requirements outlined in the government’s decree. Primarily, they must be over 18, have an authorized infertility diagnosis and have a doctor’s certificate stating that the patient is unable to overcome infertility problem by using another technique or procedure.Castillo believes interest in offering IVF will likely increase as the number of qualified professionals begins to grow. He said local clinics and hospitals could also form alliances with international health care firms that could help them lower the required investment.According to the Centro Fecundar clinic website, the basic cost of undergoing an IVF cycle is around $7,000, including consultations and medications. Add another $8,000 if a couple needs an egg donor and around $500 for a sperm donor.By comparison, the average cost of an IVF cycle in the U.S. is $12,400, according to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine.The clinic states that its success rate is 47 percent when transferring two embryos obtained from the patient’s own eggs. The odds increase to 65 percent with embryos come from donated eggs.IVF at public hospitalsThe government’s decree granted the Social Security System, or Caja, a two-year period to implement IVF procedures at public hospitals.Caja Executive President María del Rocío Sáenz Madrigal said that’s the minimum amount of time needed to build and equip the future National IVF Center, and to train all required staff to perform the procedures.Preliminary estimates indicate that each basic cycle would cost Caja about ₡1 million (some $1,800).Sáenz has said that IVF will be the last resort for infertile couples; Caja’s protocols state that couples must first try other fertility treatments.According to data from the Caja, some 15 percent of Costa Rica’s population, equivalent to some 730,000 people, face some kind of infertility problem. Of these, only 15 percent would likely require IVF to have children, according to the Caja.The government’s decree allows transferring a maximum of two fertilized eggs. Any additional eggs extracted during the process must be frozen and may not be sold or discarded. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

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One dead in new round of protests in Nicaragua

first_imgAnti-government activists hold a demonstration in Managua, Nicaragua, on July 3, 2018, demanding justice for those killed in recent protests, and the immediate resignation of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega and his wife and Vice President Rosario Murillo.The protest in the capital took place on the same day that truckloads of police and pro-government gunmen rolled into a town in northern Nicaragua, clearing an opposition roadblock in clashes that left one person reported dead.The new violence came as investigators from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights began a probe into months of violence which has killed more than 200 people.A statement from the commission said it had a mandate of six months and has been tasked with “supporting the investigations of the violent acts that have taken place in the country since April 18, in the framework of the social protests.”The government incursion took place in La Trinidad, 125 kilometers (78 miles) north of the capital Managua. State media said a riot police officer died. Several demonstrators were wounded, human rights activists said. Facebook Comments Fed up: Nicaragua’s uprisingcenter_img Related posts:Army’s role under the spotlight in Nicaragua Nicaraguan students vow to keep up fight until Ortega resigns Nicaragua police arrest 20, use stun grenades to end protest Safety fears lead CONCACAF to cancel women’s U17 event in Nicaragualast_img read more

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UK sailor missing in Dubai

first_img Sponsored Stories More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements LONDON (AP) – The Royal Navy says a British soldier has gone missing while his ship was docked in Dubai.Timothy Andrew Maccoll, 27, is a seaman aboard the HMS Westminster, which arrived in Dubai on Saturday and left Thursday.The Navy said Friday that local authorities have been contacted and are treating the incident as a missing person case.His family said in a statement that they are “desperately worried” about the married father of two, who was last seen by a shipmate getting into a taxi alone at around 2 a.m. on Sunday. Top Stories Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates Top ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day His wife Rachel, who is expecting their third child, said it was “completely out of character” for her husband not to be in touch.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)center_img Comments   Share   New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Parents, stop beating yourself up 5 things to look for when selecting an ophthalmologist Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, familylast_img read more

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Eastern Europe gives Volkswagen a sales boost

first_img Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk Sponsored Stories Group sales in Europe were up 0.8 percent in the first nine months, as a 6 percent drop in western Europe excluding Germany was offset by a 3 percent increase in the home market, and a 23.1 percent increase in central and eastern Europe, including Russia.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project 5 greatest Kentucky Derby finishes Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvementcenter_img Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day BERLIN (AP) – Strong sales in Eastern Europe helped Volkswagen AG post a 6.5 percent increase in September sales over the same month last year, despite difficulties caused by the European financial crisis.Volkswagen said Friday it sold 801,000 vehicles in September, against 751,900 in September 2011. Overall sales through September were up 9.7 percent on the same period the previous year to 6.71 million.The number includes Porsche for the first time, which became a Volkswagen brand in August. Porsche has sold 22,800 vehicles since then. Top Stories Parents, stop beating yourself up 0 Comments   Share   last_img read more

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Paraguay diplomats ordered to leave Venezuela

first_img Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Early signs of cataracts in your parents and how to help “Paraguay has another style for its diplomatic relations,” Fernandez said.___Associated Press writer Pedro Servin in Asuncion, Paraguay, contributed to this report.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center Associated PressCARACAS, Venezuela (AP) – Venezuela’s government has decided to expel Paraguay’s remaining diplomats from the country, the top envoy at the Paraguayan Embassy said Wednesday.Charge d’affaires Victor Casartelli said that he and three other Paraguayan diplomats in Caracas were told by Venezuela’s Foreign Ministry to leave within three days.Venezuelan government officials did not respond to calls seeking comment about the matter. Casartelli said that he received a call Tuesday from the Foreign Ministry informing him of the decision and that he met Wednesday with Venezuelan officials who confirmed that the four should go. Comments   Share   Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Sponsored Stories Top Stories Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Arizona families, Arizona farms: providing the local community with responsibly produced dairy The expulsion of Paraguay’s diplomats follows a bitter dispute between the countries that began in June with the congressional impeachment and ouster of Paraguayan President Fernando Lugo, an ally of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.In July, the two governments withdrew their ambassadors amid rising tensions over Lugo’s removal. Chavez later said he had ordered his country’s military attaches to leave Paraguay, citing threats against diplomats.Casartelli said he was told by Venezuelan officials that when their government withdrew its diplomats, “they were waiting for Paraguay to do the same thing with us.”Since months passed and Paraguay didn’t follow suit, Venezuelan officials decided to expel the remaining diplomats, Casartelli said. He said in a phone interview that he and the other three diplomats had made plans to leave this week.One Paraguayan Embassy employee who is not a diplomat will be allowed to remain to perform consular duties, Casartelli said.In Paraguay, Foreign Minister Jose Felix Fernandez said in remarks broadcast by a local radio station that “Venezuela’s government has a peculiar way of facing its international relations, but I won’t judge it.”last_img read more

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Profile Kawabatas in Japan spending cautiously

first_imgIn other ways, the Kawabatas are more typical of their generation. Both Teruyuki and Haruna, who works at a department store, were children when Japan’s bubble economy burst more than two decades ago, so they never experienced the boom years of the 1980s. They have little interest in the stock market. They scratch out a living on their modest incomes, saving a little here and there.“I don’t see a goal in this economy,” Teruyuki says. “Those are the times we are in.”(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Sponsored Stories Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Comments   Share   Top Stories Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility KOUNOSU, Japan (AP) – To understand why people are so cautious with their money five years after the financial crisis, The Associated Press interviewed consumers around the world. Here is a profile of one couple:Names: Teruyuki and Haruna KawabataHome: Kounosu, Japan, a suburb of TokyoAges: He is 36; she is 32Teruyuki Kawabata is worried he could get laid off, so he lives frugally.“Jobs for life are a dream,” he says. Check your body, save your life He and his wife, Haruna, rarely use credit cards. Their idea of splurging is a nice haircut or occasionally going out for Korean barbecue. They hope to grow their own food on a farm next to their newly built home in Kounosu and live off the land.Teruyuki is what’s known in Japan as a “contract worker.” He does the same work as a full-time employee but without the job security of one. Japan’s two-tier employment system has drawn fire as unfair, but is increasingly used by companies that want flexibility in an anemic economy to cut staff fast.Teruyuki works for a major telecommunications company, but wouldn’t give details because he’s afraid for his job. “I’m not sure when my contract will end,” he says. “… I may get fired tomorrow.”For all the uncertainty, the Kawabatas took a gamble recently. They took out a mortgage last year to build their home, which is on land that Haruna’s parents own. They borrowed 28 million yen ($280,000) for 35 years at an annual interest rate that won’t climb above 1.88 percent. They say they borrowed because they feared rates could rise.The move is unusual. Since the financial crisis, Japanese have shed debt, not added to it, despite low rates that have made it cheap to borrow. Per adult, personal debt in Japan dropped 3 percent in the 4 1/2 years after 2008, according to Credit Suisse. Patients with chronic pain give advice 3 international destinations to visit in 2019last_img read more

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Founder of French farright party to start up new movement

first_img Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk Sponsored Stories Comments   Share   PARIS (AP) — Jean-Marie Le Pen announced Tuesday that he will create a new political formation following his suspension from France’s far-right National Front party that he founded more than 40 years ago.Le Pen, 86, who is embroiled in a family feud and risks losing his title of honorary president for life of the party, did not specify what form the new movement would take, though he said it would not be another political party. Le Pen drew the ire of his daughter and the party hierarchy in early April when he reiterated anti-Semitic remarks and spoke kindly of World War II collaborationist Philippe Petain.Last month, the party suspended Le Pen and is to rule within three months on whether to abolish his president-for-life title.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Top Stories He said Tuesday on RTL radio that vice-president Florian Philippot is slowly taking over command of the National Front from his daughter Marine Le Pen — the party president.“It’s Philippot or Le Pen,” he said defiantly.Philippot, who has a stock of elite degrees, is the most visible member of the leadership of the anti-immigration National Front, appearing regularly on French television. He is considered Marine Le Pen’s top lieutenant — though the senior Le Pen claims it is the other way around.Speaking on Radio Courtoisie on Monday night, Le Pen said he wants to create a “kind of parachute against disaster.”“I won’t create another party,” he said. “I’ll create a formation that won’t compete with” the National Front.As the most serious in a string of family feuds between the Le Pens ballooned into a political crisis, Philippot spoke with virulence against Jean-Marie Le Pen, at one point comparing him to an old singer who cannot leave the stage.Marine Le Pen, her sights set on the 2017 presidential election, has been working to clean up the image of the party her father founded in 1972. The National Front has been a critical factor in elections since 1984, setting the agenda for mainstream politicians but unable to shake its status as political pariah. 5 greatest Kentucky Derby finishes Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility The vital role family plays in society New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvementlast_img read more

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Travellers declare Outrigger On The Lagoon Fiji top resort

first_imgThe 2012 Trip Advisor Travellers Choice Awards has ranked Outrigger on the Lagoon Fiji in the top 25 hotels for families in the South Pacific.General Manager Peter Hopgood said the Travellers Choice award is a fantastic achievement for the resort because it is voted by real travellers who have experienced the product first hand. ‘This award is an amazing triumph for each and every one of our dedicated staff,’ said Mr Hopgood.‘Our range of family-friendly offerings from the Meimei nanny service to the Little Riggers and Beach Riggers kids club and extensive activity programs make it a very attractive destination for families,’ he said. ‘Our product is under pinned by the genuine warmth and hospitality of our Fijian staff who are legendary for their love of children and willingness to please,’ he added.Outrigger on the Lagoon’s Meimei service is designed to be not only fun for kids but also educational, providing children with the chance to participate in traditional Fijian arts and crafts, fishing and basic language lessons. The service provides one-on-one care for children aged 6 months to 2 years and two children per nanny for children 3 years and over.   It is supported by the Outrigger kids clubs, Little Riggers for 3-7 year olds and Beach Riggers for 8-12 year olds, which provide a range of fun and age appropriate activities and cultural experiences.The resort also offers opportunities for families to immerse themselves in Fijian culture including tours to watch the Outrigger Nadroga Stallions rugby home games, visits to local villages to observe the traditional way of life or to participate in one of the resorts community projects. For additional information visit: www.outriggerfiji.com Source = Outrigger Reef Fijilast_img read more

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CLIA Australasia begins online training

first_imgTravel agents can now boost their cruise knowledge without leaving their desks, with Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) Australasia announcing it has moved the mandatory components of its cruise industry training program online.In what is a landmark move for the industry body, agents will now be able to undertake all compulsory CLIA training required to achieve Cruise Industry Accreditation online.CLIA Australasia general manager Brett Jardine, said that the new training program had been developed in conjunction with CLIA’s UK office.“This is a major step which will make it far easier for travel consultants to enhance their cruise knowledge, add to their confidence and grow their cruise sales without even leaving their desk,” Mr Jardine said.The online program will be available on tablets as well as desktop computers and will complement CLIA’s existing classroom training modules for membership accreditation.Access to the online accreditation training will be included in members’ annual fees, with consultants having direct access to their own password-protected personal profile so they can track the progress of their cruise industry knowledge.CLIA will still provide classroom training for elective modules across Australia and New Zealand for consultants who aspire to a higher level of accreditation or wish to expand their cruise industry knowledge.Source = ETB News: Lewis Wisemanlast_img read more

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Wellington Corporate Travel Agency wins National Industry Award

first_imgWellington Corporate Travel Agency wins National Industry AwardTravel agency Orbit Wellington has been awarded ‘Best Brand Corporate Single Location’ at the TAANZ National Travel Industry Awards, which acknowledge excellence in the sector.Director and Business Owner of Orbit Wellington, Paul Rennie says the needs of the corporate travel market are rapidly evolving, and the recent honour acknowledges Orbit’s focus on the client and delivering the simplest, smartest business travel solutions.“Kiwi executives are travelling even more domestically and further afield than ever before, and with this business migration they have an increasing need for a 24/7 service, greater security while travelling and, rely more on technology to increase the efficiency of travel; whether it is managing their itinerary, tracking expenses or using the best booking systems available,” he says.Rennie says it is no longer just the domain of larger organisations with increasing numbers of SMEs requiring the agency’s services.Strong supplier relationships and preferred partner arrangements which benefit clients have also been key to the company’s ongoing growth, he says.“Our business approach is about providing our clients with a seamless service which means meeting their needs at all times – from thinking outside the box for providing travel solutions to our clients, to helping those stranded in emergencies – everything we do is done with the client top of mind”.Rennie says Wellington’s client focus extends to the company having created virtual offices which allow Orbit staff to work remotely during an outage, ensuring there is minimal downtime for clients needing essential travel services. “We even have the capability to set up remote offices around the world for clients that need business services during their own hours of business”.Orbit was also a finalist in the ‘Best Brand Corporate Multi Location’ category of the TAANZ Awards, and Orbit’s travel booking provider Amadeus won the ‘Best Technology Supplier’ Category.Source = Orbit World Travellast_img read more

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Two of Australias funniest check in to Travelodge Hotels

first_imgTFE Hotels has recruited some of the funniest names in Australian comedy to promote the new “Refreshingly Simple” philosophy of Travelodge Hotels across Australia and New Zealand.Perth export Joel Creasey and Newcastle’s Rhys Nicholson will release a hilarious new set of videos next week to bring to life the Travelodge Hotels brand, which has recently undergone the biggest refresh in its 40-year history.With a down to earth attitude and an honest sense of humour, Travelodge Hotels are designed to suit the way we live today.Each of the 17 hotels in Australia and New Zealand are now based on a Refreshingly Simple approach, giving travellers more of what they want and less of the things that seem, well, rather pointless.TFE Hotels CEO Rachel Argaman said the videos were designed to share the refreshed Travelodge Hotels brand with a broader demographic, engaging with younger audiences via Social Media using well known personalities for the campaign.“Comedians like Joel are a logical fit for Travelodge Hotels. He has a great appeal and his star has risen so far in recent years, while Rhys offers something different with his quirky local knowledge of his hometown,” Ms Argaman said.“We’ve created a set of rollicking videos that will be launched online, using Travelodge as their base.”Australia’s ‘Acid Tongue Prince’ Joel Creasey will check in to host a short-video series, in which he will share his travel stories, hints and advice.As one of Australia’s hottest comedians, Joel made a name for himself performing sold-out runs at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, and with shows at the New York International Fringe Festival.He has been inside his fair share of hotels across the world in recent years and has a huge repertoire of stories to tell, ranging from the good to the bad, to the downright awkward…“Everyone has experienced that intense moment of panic when you’ve just jumped out of the shower and you hear a knock at the door and, ‘HOUSEKEEPING’,” Joel said.“We’re going to take a little journey into the world of travel the funnier moments of hotel stays so hopefully, we’ll have a few laughs along the way. Stay tuned!”Joining Joel on the Travelodge guest list is Newcastle’s razor-sharp-witted, Rhys Nicholson who burst onto the scene when he won the 2012 Time Out Award for Best Newcomer at the Sydney Comedy Festival.Though he now lives in Sydney, his hometown will always be extremely close to his heart. Rhys will be filming a travel guide with a twist for visitors to the harbourside city, giving insider hints and tips for making the most of a few days in this often-overlooked part of New South Wales.“I might have been away from Newcastle for a few years now, but I definitely have fond memories of growing up there. Or maybe I just have memories…” Rhys said.“There’s definitely a different side to the city that you can discover if you know where to look, which luckily I do, so I’m looking forward to showing off my roots with my very own travel guide!” Learn more hereSource = TFE Hotelslast_img read more

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W Hotels unveils exclusive capsule collection with XU ZHI

first_imgThe ‘XU ZHI for W Hotels’ capsule collection includes 12 pieces, each inspired by the flapper attire of Old Shanghai and increasingly popular sleepwear sported by locals in the fashion capital of the East. Xuzhi Chen, the designer behind the XU ZHI brand, brings his own unique fusion of Western tastes and Chinese aesthetics into his work. Much like W Shanghai – The Bund, the capsule collection playfully reinterprets Shanghai’s rich history in a display of Eastern and Western cultures colliding, featuring a color scheme of mint green, sky blue, beige and light yellow alongside vintage floral and stripe prints. The collection also includes a XU ZHI-designed eye mask, passport holder and beauty bag so guests can take a piece of Shanghai with them on-the-go.“W has always been one of my favorite hotel brands; they bring so much passion to the design of their properties,” said Xuzhi Chen, Designer, XU ZHI. “That passion is something I’ve admired for a long time, so I was excited to work with W Hotels on this capsule collection. Both W and I design with bold innovation and a contemporary attitude in mind, and creating this collection for W Shanghai – The Bund felt like a natural fit. I can’t wait for W guests around the world to try out the beautiful pieces we’ve created to celebrate this city.”XU ZHI has seen retail success in both the European and Asian markets, making the brand an ideal match for the new property which will welcome travelers from around the globe. Xuzhi Chen is a graduate of the 2015 CFDA+ program, a virtual design talent lab, uniting members of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) and educational initiatives to bridge the gap between education and the fashion industry.  The new partnership between XU ZHI and W Hotels is the latest development in over 5 years of collaborations between W Hotels and the CFDA. Over the years, W Hotels and the CFDA have pursued their joint mission to support and nurture emerging and established talent alike, creating exposure and business opportunities for designers on a global level.“The goal of the CFDA+ virtual talent lab is to shine a spotlight on emerging talent from around the world,” said Sara Kozlowski, Director of Education and Professional Development, Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA). “CFDA’s partnership with W Hotels allows us to give CFDA+ 2015 designer Xuzhi Chen increased visibility in Shanghai, the bustling fashion capital of China, and beyond. It’s an incredible opportunity and a collaboration that is sure to make an impression during Shanghai Fashion Week.”No Sleep For Fashion WeekAs one of the world’s major fashion events, W Hotels wasted no time getting involved in Shanghai Fashion Week. In addition to unveiling the capsule collection, W Hotels also presented XU ZHI’s newest Spring Summer 2018 Collection as part of the official Shanghai Fashion Week calendar. Nearly 400 media and guests attended the runway presentation themed ‘Sleepless Shanghai’ at the W Shanghai – The Bund, a nod to the electrifying energy of the city. VIP guests were granted backstage access to the hotel’s high-design suite, Cloud on the Bund, where the new ‘XU ZHI for W Hotels’ capsule collection was brought to life among the suite’s hanging bed and neon art. As part of the launch, W Shanghai – The Bund also hosted an energetic panel discussion with XU ZHI, moderated by renowned Chinese fashion influencer GOGOBOI.Beyond The RunwayFashion has always been synonymous with W since the brand’s inception. Across Asia Pacific, W has rolled out a series of fashion-forward initiatives over the past few years. W Guangzhou collaborated with Chinese designer Uma Wang to design the hotels’ uniform, while Masha Ma held an Asian premiere for her Spring Summer 2014 Collection at W Hong Kong in 2014. In 2015, Vega Zaishi Wang kicked off the “Rock the Empire” premiere at W Beijing – Chang’an with her fashion show, while iconic fashion stylist and one of China’s most influential fashion bloggers, Han Huo Huo, chose W Beijing Chang’an for his brand debut. Most recently, in celebration of the opening of W Goa in 2016, the brand partnered with Indian designer duo, Sachin + Babi, to unveil a collection inspired by the destination and designed exclusively for W Goa.Now On The North BundW Shanghai – The Bund opened in the summer of 2017, marking the first W property in Shanghai. Designed by the acclaimed G.A Design, the hotel showcases an exciting combination of historic and modern influences while offering epic skyline views of the energetic city’s new financial district. The 374-room hotel provides a captivating contrast in its bold design and decadent style, highlighting Shanghai’s glamorous past and avant-garde present.Source = W Hotels Worldwide W Hotels unveils exclusive capsule collection with XU ZHIW Hotels unveils exclusive capsule collection with XU ZHIJust in time for Shanghai Fashion Week, W Hotels Worldwide today unveiled ‘XU ZHI for W Hotels,’ an exclusive capsule collection by XU ZHI to celebrate the opening of the first W hotel in Shanghai. W Hotels teamed up with the cutting-edge fashion label to debut six distinct looks and several travel accessories inspired by the city’s glamorous past and the electrifying design of W Shanghai – The Bund. For the exclusive W capsule collection, Eastern and Western styles and cultures collide incorporating colors and concepts found at W Shanghai – The Bund. Available for purchase at W Hotels The Store online, each piece of the collection is ideal for a night in or on-the-town.“W has always been associated with high octane fashion since its inception. Be it our longstanding partnership with CFDA, we have always dedicated ourselves to aspiring artists and young fashion designers, creating captivating events around fashion,” said Carol Zhou, Senior Director, Luxury Brand Management – Asia Pacific, Marriott International.  “The unveil of the collection comes timely as we celebrate the recent opening of W Shanghai – The Bund. We are also proud to present the brand’s very first show at Shanghai Fashion Week together with XU ZHI, fueling the brand’s passion for fashion in Asia’s fashion capital.”last_img read more

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Thailand to host PATA Destination Marketing Forum 2018

first_imgPicture: L/R: Mrs. Srisuda Wanapinyosak, Deputy Governor for International Marketing (Europe, Africa, Middle East and Americas), Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT); Mr. Santi Laoboonsa-ngiem, Vice Governor, Khon Kaen Province, Thailand; Mrs. Supawan Teerarat, Senior Vice President – Strategic Business Development & Innovation of the Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB); and Dr. Mario Hardy, CEO, PATA.Thailand to host PATA Destination Marketing Forum 2018The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) is pleased to announce that the PATA Destination Marketing Forum 2018 (PDMF 2018) will be held in Khon Kaen, Thailand from November 28-30.The event, formerly known as the PATA New Tourism Frontiers Forum, will be held under the theme “Growth with Goals” and is generously hosted by the Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) and the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT).The announcement was made today at a press conference during the ASEAN Tourism Forum in Chiang Mai, Thailand at the Chiang Mai International Exhibition and Convention Centre. The announcement was made by Mr. Santi Laoboonsa-ngiem, Vice Governor, Khon Kaen Province, Thailand; Mrs. Supawan Teerarat, Senior Vice President – Strategic Business Development & Innovation of TCEB; Mrs. Srisuda Wanapinyosak, Deputy Governor for International Marketing (Europe, Africa, Middle East and Americas), TAT, and Dr. Mario Hardy, CEO, PATA.Mr. Laoboonsa-ngiem said, “Khon Kaen, located in the heart of Thailand’s Northeast region, has become a gateway to the Greater Mekong Subregion, which consists of Cambodia, China (Yunnan and Quangxi Provinces), Laos, Myanmar, Vietnam and Thailand. Khon Kaen is also widely known for its rich traditional Isan culture and history, where visitors can experience the lifestyle of Isan people, enjoy popular Isan cuisine, explore pre-historical artifacts and antiques, and learn about the famous Mad Mee silk production of Khon Kaen.”Mrs. Supawan Teerarat stated, “TCEB is proud and delighted to promote and co-organize the PATA Destination Marketing Forum 2018 event here in the province of Khon Kaen in Thailand. The event, which will serve as a driving force for international MICE events in Thailand, contributes to implementing the government’s policy of stimulating and developing the regional economy. Khon Kaen is one of Thailand’s leading MICE cities, with strong potential and readiness to host international conventions to world-class standards. The city has already built a strong track record in hosting numerous high-profile MICE events.”“This event offers an important platform for all MICE stakeholders, including private sector companies, MICE operators and tourism businesses across the Asia-Pacific region. In particular the event will maximize benefits to Thai participants both from Khon Kaen itself, and from secondary MICE cities around the country. In order to further stimulate Thai participation, TCEB has negotiated waivers of registration fees for Thai operators and relevant government agencies for the event. The event will contribute greatly to raising visibility and awareness of Khon Kaen and other regional MICE cities as international MICE destinations. At TCEB we are committed to supporting responsible, low-impact, sustainable growth in the MICE business, to harness MICE events to benefit local communities, and to drive inclusive economic growth across the country,” she added.Dr. Hardy said, “Aligning with PATA’s advocacy theme of tourism dispersal, this year’s forum under the theme “Growth with Goals” shines the spotlight on Khon Kaen in Northeastern Thailand. The Association has been a strong advocate on the issue of tourism dispersal to secondary and tertiary destination, as it allows people to see the true authentic beauty of the country and its people and at the same provide an economic boost to local communities who greatly benefit from tourism.”Mrs. Wanapinyosak said, “Engaging with local community is an important part of unique experiences Thailand has to offer visitors. Our marketing direction embraces a new concept “Open to the New Shades of Thailand” where visitors are inspired to discover Thailand and its diversity in a new light. Thai Gastronomy, Art and Craft, Nature and Way of Life are what embody Thainess and the uniqueness of experience that visitors are after.”In advocating sustainable tourism and emerging destinations, PATA is pleased to offer complimentary registration to all interested parties who wish to attend.For more information about the event, please visit www.pata.org/pdmf or email events@PATA.orgSource = Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA)last_img read more

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Mossman Gorge Centre scoops Gold for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Isla

first_imgSource = Voyages Indigenous Tourism Australia Mossman Gorge Centre scoops Gold for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander TourismMossman Gorge Centre scoops Gold for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Tourism in QueenslandVoyages Indigenous Tourism Australia’s Mossman Gorge Centre has received the prestigious Gold Qantas Award for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Tourism in the Queensland Tourism Awards, which took place on Friday 16 November at The Star Gold Coast.“Excellence in Indigenous Tourism is core to our vision at Voyages Indigenous Tourism Australia. To receive the Gold award for the third time in this category is a great testament to the dedication of the team at Mossman Gorge Centre and their passion for delivering an exceptional tourism experience for our guests,” said Voyages Chief Executive Officer, Grant Hunt.Mossman Gorge Centre is an Indigenous eco-tourism development serving the Mossman Gorge World Heritage site in Far North Queensland. The Queensland Tourism Award was awarded for Mossman Gorge Centre’s impressive product which offers visitors a genuine insight into Indigenous Australia and authentic engagement with the local Kuku Yalanji people through Dreamtime Gorge Walks incorporating culture, history and storytelling on private Kuku Yalanji country in the heart of the rainforest. Mossman Gorge Centre also delivers significant economic, employment and training opportunities for the local Kuku Yalanji people.The Qantas Award for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Tourism recognises tourism operations that demonstrate authenticity and cultivate a greater understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture, history and traditions. Mossman Gorge Centre has now been the Gold award winner in this category three times: in 2018, 2016 and 2014.Queensland Tourism Award winners will represent the state at the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards on 1 March 2019. Following Mossman Gorge Centre’s Queensland Tourism Award win in 2016, it went on to win a Bronze award for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Tourism at the Australian Tourism Awards. About Voyages Indigenous Tourism AustraliaVoyages Indigenous Tourism Australia is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Indigenous Land Corporation (ILC) established to undertake tourism business on its behalf. Voyages offers unique experiences and cultural immersion in spectacular locations around Australia including Ayers Rock Resort in the Northern Territory, Home Valley Station in The Kimberley in Western Australia and the Mossman Gorge Centre, in Tropical North Queensland. Voyages works collaboratively with local communities, respecting and supporting the local Indigenous cultures and offering employment and training opportunities to the local and broader Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. Profits from all business activities are re-invested in the Indigenous and resort experiences and through the various training and development programs in place around Australia.last_img read more

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