Posts by Sharon Evers

First TUI Blue Hotel opens in Portugal

TUI Group has opened its first TUI Blue hotel in Portugal on 14th February 2018. The opening of TUI Blue Falesia marks the launch of this year’s growth phase for TUI Group’s new lifestyle hotel brand. By Summer 2018, three more hotels will follow in Tunisia, Spain and Turkey, expanding the portfolio to a total of ten hotels.

The romantic flair at the new hotel was brought to life through its opening on Valentine’s Day, and the hotel will continue to focus on adults and couples in future. The TUI Blue Falesia (4.5-star) hotel is perched on a clifftop above Praia da Falesia Beach and offers breathtaking views of the Atlantic. The hotel features 349 rooms and can be enjoyed by guests aged over 16. TUI Blue targets an international audience with an affinity for lifestyle, seeking authentic holiday experiences. The hotel is located on the Algarve between Faro and Lagos and offers numerous opportunities of getting to know the surroundings, the country and the people. TUI Blue Falesia’s highlights for its guests include Mediterranean/Portuguese cuisine, cutting-edge technology and the innovative Bluefit concept for fitness, wellness and nutrition.

“Since the launch of the TUI Blue brand in 2016, we have recorded above-average customer satisfaction scores. With the TUI Blue Falesia, we are planning to continue this success story in Portugal,” said Artur Gerber, Managing Director TUI Blue. “This year’s four new openings are positioned as adults-only hotels in order to expand TUI Blue’s portfolio for this continually growing target audience.”

The dates for the forthcoming new openings have already been fixed: March will see the launch of the TUI Blue Palm Beach Palace hotel in Djerba, followed by the TUI Blue Marmaris in Turkey and the TUI Blue Rocador in Mallorca in May. Just as the TUI Blue Falesia, these hotels will be existing hotels from TUI’s Hotels & Resorts portfolio, repositioned as hotels of the lifestyle experience brand.

Photo: Artur Gerber (Managing Director TUI Blue, second from left) and Aurelio Marcos (GM TUI Blue Falesia, at the right) with the first guests 

Disneyland Paris Unveils Plans for New Marvel – Themed Attraction

Disneyland Paris revealed plans to bring the Marvel Super Heroes to life in an epic way at Walt Disney Studios Park with a completely new Marvel – themed attraction.
The news comes from Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Bob Chapek during the D23 Expo Japan, where more than 2000 fans were the first to hear about the latest projects in development for Disney guests all over the world, including those for Disneyland Paris. The new development builds on the momentum of the resort’s 25th Anniversary celebration and follows the recent news that Walt Disney Parks and Resorts is preparing to incorporate more popular stories and characters into Europe’s top tourist destination, giving Disneyland Paris guests even more entertainment experiences and attractions.
New Marvel – Themed Attraction
Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith will be completely reimagined into a new Marvel – themed attraction where riders will team up with Iron Man and their favorite Avengers on a high – speed, hyper – kinetic adventure. The addition of the new attraction provides a permanent presence of Marvel making this Park even more of a must – do for guests.
Disney’s Hotel New York
The Art of Marvel Additionally will soon be reimagined to become Disney’s Hotel New York – The Art of Marvel, becoming the first Disney Hotel to showcase the thrilling world of the Avengers. With exclusive artwork and a new design, it will be a residence fit for Tony Stark himself.

More Marvel Now!And for guests who can’t wait to experience Marvel at Disneyland Paris, The Avengers will assemble this June during Marvel Summer of Super Heroes, which will bring guests face-to-face with Captain America, Spider-Man, Star-Lord and Black Widow. These heroes will also take the stage in a live-action super-production featuring cutting-edge special effects, spectacular projections, and lots of other surprises. “These ambitious Marvel developments across Disneyland Paris will create brand new immersive Super Hero experiences for our guests, and will enhance the overall appeal of our resort,” said Catherine Powell, Présidente of Euro Disney S.A.S.

 

American Express Global Business Travel to acquire Hogg Robinson Group

American Express Global Business Travel (GBT), a leading global travel management company, has today announced it will acquire Hogg Robinson Group (HRG) PLC, a global B2B services company specialising in travel management, in a recommended all-cash acquisition of the entire issued, and to be issued, ordinary share capital. The acquisition is conditioned on receipt of antitrust and other regulatory approvals and is expected to close in the second quarter of 2018.

Both American Express GBT and HRG have made significant investments in people and technology in recent years. The combined group will offer clients and travellers a more comprehensive range of travel management products and services. The acquisition is expected to:

  • Accelerate growth by utilising complementary footprints and solutions to provide additional benefits to clients
  • Create the ability to combine two advanced travel technology and development platforms to create better products and services to serve clients and travellers
  • Deliver synergies through cost savings and scale benefits; and
  • Leverage each company’s existing infrastructure and technology capabilities to maximise efficiencies across the business
  • View the full stock exchange announcement here

Doug Anderson, Chief Executive Officer, American Express GBT, said: “The complementary geographical footprints of each company will improve the global scale and reach of our business, enabling us to achieve efficiencies across a best-in-class platform and accelerate growth. The technology roadmaps of each business provide a powerful platform from which to drive future innovation. We will deliver a superior client and traveller experience through fully-integrated travel management solutions, including booking and expense management products.”

David Radcliffe, Chief Executive Officer, HRG, said: “This transaction represents a good deal for shareholders and stakeholders. I am particularly excited and heartened by American Express GBT’s reassurance that it will be utilising the best talent and technology from within both organisations to create a truly world-class, leading-edge organisation, which will bring benefits to our clients, colleagues and supplier partners alike.” 

Greg O’Hara, Chairman of the Board, American Express GBT, said: “The Board of Directors of GBT strongly endorses the acquisition of Hogg Robinson. Significant customer, operational and financial benefits are expected. This will enable the Combined Group to focus on additional value creation for customers and the marketplace, while generating new efficiency and growth opportunities for the business. I am excited at the prospect of creating a truly world class travel management company using the best available talent from both Hogg Robinson and GBT. Customers and travellers will benefit from the Combined Group’s complementary geographical footprint and technology offering. This combination will unlock meaningful value for all stakeholders.”

The acquisition is conditioned on receipt of antitrust and other regulatory approvals and is expected to close in the second quarter of 2018.

Air Freight Demand up 9% in 2017, Strongest Growth Since 2010

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released full-year 2017 data for global air freight markets showing that demand, measured in freight tonne kilometers (FTKs) grew by 9.0%. This was more than double the 3.6% annual growth recorded in 2016.

Freight capacity, measured in available freight tonne kilometers (AFTKs), rose by 3.0% in 2017. This was the slowest annual capacity growth seen since 2012. Demand growth outpaced capacity growth by a factor of three.

Air cargo’s strong performance in 2017 was sealed by a solid result in December. Year-on-year demand growth in December increased 5.7%. This was less than half the annual growth rate seen during the middle of 2017 but still well above the five-year average of 4.7%. Freight capacity grew by 3.3% year-on-year in December.

Full-year 2017 demand for air freight grew at twice the pace of the expansion in world trade (4.3%). This outperformance was a result of strong global demand for manufacturing exports as companies moved to restock inventories quickly.

“Air cargo had its strongest performance since the rebound from the global financial crisis in 2010. Demand grew by 9.0%. That outpaced the industry-wide growth in both cargo capacity and in passenger demand. We saw improvements in load factors, yields and revenues. Air cargo is still a very tough and competitive business, but the developments in 2017 were the most positive that we have seen in a very long time,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

“The outlook for air freight in 2018 is optimistic. Consumer confidence is buoyant. And we see growing strength in international e-commerce and the transport of time- and temperature-sensitive goods such as pharmaceuticals. Overall the pace of growth is expected to slow from the exceptional 9.0% of this year. But we still expect a very healthy 4.5% expansion of demand in 2018. Challenges remain, including the need for industry-wide evolution to more efficient processes. That will help improve customer satisfaction and capture market share as the expectations of shippers and consumers grow ever more demanding,” said de Juniac.