Tourism

Flavour of the week

Whip out the finger buns and party poppers, it’s time to welcome some new hires!

World Expeditions Travel Group Appoints Virginia Haddon to Manage PR for Key Brands

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World Expeditions Travel Group (WETG) has appointed seasoned communications and marketing specialist, Virginia Haddon, to manage public relations for three niche brands, including its fast-growing European active travel brand, UTracks.

As well as UTracks, Virginia will be responsible for public relations for WETG’s school groups and youth brand, World Youth Adventures and its charity brand, Huma Charity Challenge.

Virginia is a travel industry veteran, having worked for more than 20 years devising and executing successful, complex campaigns and developing collaborative relationships across a wide range of sectors including travel, food and wine, and wellbeing.

Her most recent roles included managing the media for Luxperience and running her own consultancy, Cascade Communications.

Fusion Appoints New Vice President of Operations

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After more than three decades in the hospitality industry, including 20 years managing hotels in Thailand, Samir Wildemann has moved east to Vietnam where he’s joined the Fusion hospitality group as vice president of operations.

Fusion is planning to open several new properties in the next two years including two hotels in Saigon, one in Vung Tau, and a new resort in Quang Binh. They recently completed two major expansion projects at existing resorts in Phu Quoc and Cam Ranh. Wildemann will help refine and enhance Fusion’s luxury experience at all Fusion properties.

The German-native’s most recent role was as general manager and senior vice president for Southeast Asia at Siam Kempinski Hotel, a position he held for three years from 2015 – 2018. He has held the position of Corporate Executive Officer at Okura Hotels & Resorts and opened The Okura Prestige Bangkok (2010 – 2015) and with Carlson Rezidor Bangkok (2008 – 2010).

TripAdvisor Appoints Kanika Soni as President of the Company’s Hotels Business Unit

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TripAdvisor has announced that Kanika Soni will join the company as president of the hotels business unit, effective April 15. In this role, Soni will oversee TripAdvisor’s hotels business, representing a substantial part of the company’s total revenue. She will be responsible for product, engineering, sales and marketing for hotels.

Soni will report to Stephen Kaufer, TripAdvisor president and CEO, and will focus on building a future-focused strategy to ensure TripAdvisor’s continued growth and profitability in a rapidly shifting, increasingly complex and competitive global landscape.

MSC Cruises announce new appointments 

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MSC Cruises has today announced that Alessandro Guerreri has been appointed Managing Director of its Australasia business, overseeing local operations and commercial activities across this high-potential market.

Alessandro joins from MSC Cruises Head Office Geneva, Switzerland where he was most recently Business Unit Director On Board Retail, Casino, Spa, Photo & Other Revenues and a member of the Company’s senior management team.

After nine years as Managing Director, Australasia, where she oversaw the development and growth of MSC Cruises in this region, Lynne Clarke takes the position of MSC Cruises’ Chairman for the same.

With her great cruise industry experience, passion and knowledge of the local market, in her new role Lynne will oversee MSC Cruises’ relations with local institutions, maritime relevant entities and other stakeholders, seeking to advance opportunities for the Company.

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Wholesalers

Wholesaler wrap: G Adventures’ big Antarctica sale, new AAT Kings tours, Wendy Wu to set sail down the Mekong + MORE!

If there’s one thing we love about Mondays, it’s seeing several gobsmackingly good deals on tours around the world. And that’s exactly what you’ll find in this week’s wholesaler wrap.

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Aviation

WATCH: Virgin Galactic showcases new Spaceport passenger lounge

by Christian Fleetwood

With designs marrying Earth and sky, Virgin Galactic’s Spaceport lounge aims to serenade the one per cent that can afford a trip to space in style.

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Aviation

Air New Zealand pokes fun at Wallabies’ poor Bledisloe Cup record with cheeky full-page ad

by Huntley Mitchell

Are you still getting over the Wallabies’ weekend flogging at the hands of the All Blacks? Well, it’s probably best you avoid reading this.

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Events

Tourism

Three reasons why you should enter The Travel Awards

The deadline for entries to The Travel Awards is under two weeks away now, but if you’re still tossing up whether or not to throw your hat in the ring, we’ve just made your decision a whole lot easier.

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Destinations

Aussie tourist hotspot in Bali dramatically shut down

A favourite haunt for Aussie tourists in Kuta has been shut down amid claims of unpaid tax and increased crime.

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Aviation

Cathay Pacific CEO resigns as airline investigates anonymous staff letter supporting Hong Kong protests

by Christian Fleetwood

In further proof of China’s power comes these pieces of big news out of Cathay Pacific HQ.

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Tourism

23-year-old charged with shooting Aussie tourist in New Zealand

A Victorian man was shot while he slept in a rented campervan next to his fiancée in a small New Zealand surfing town.

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Hotels

Crown Resorts scores win against NSW government over Sydney Harbour views

The casino and hotel giant can rest easy knowing its soon-to-be-built Barangaroo property will have views of Sydney Harbour after the NSW government retreated from further court action.

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Destinations

Destination wrap: Germany on the rise, Vanuatu kicks off Tok Tok tradeshows + MORE!

Keep on top of the where’s where of travel with all the latest news and events in this week’s bumper destination wrap.

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Events

Wholesalers

Join Collette for a night of food, drinks and freebies!

If there’s one surefire way to entice travel agents into attending an event, it’s food, drinks and freebies.

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Travel Agents

What every travel agent can learn from actor Samuel Johnson

by Huntley Mitchell

Actor and charity founder Samuel Johnson had plenty of takeaways for travel agents at a recent conference, which you take away here.

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Aviation

Passenger plane carrying 233 makes emergency landing in cornfield

The pilots that pulled off this heroic landing are receiving more praise than our intern when he restocks the office Tim Tam supply, and that’s saying something.

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