Week in Review: Travel Industry News

Travel News 09 Oct 2017

For week ending 6 October

Qantas adds Sheridan bedding

Qantas is upgrading the bedding in its A380 First class suites. A luxurious new range of Sheridan bedding marks the first stage of the carrier’s revamp of its A380 cabin product, which will roll out progressively from October. First class travellers can expect a memory foam mattress, “super-soft” sheeting, a soft-touch tencel doona cover, a woven throw and a bolster cushion as well as a pillow menu with a choice of three options. Other upgrades include a larger, higher-resolution in-flight entertainment screen.

Restricted lounge access in Melbourne

Revamp work on the Qantas Club Lounge in Melbourne Airport’s domestic Terminal 1 is set to begin in Mid-November. Space will be limited while work is in progress, so the carrier is tightening the rules on bringing guests to the lounge. During peak hours (5-9am and 3-7pm on weekdays), gold frequent flyers and Qantas Club members will be unable to bring a guest into the lounge. Outside of these hours normal rules apply. Qantas Platinum members will not be subject to these restrictions.

Sofitel Darling Harbour now open

The Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour is now open. Located opposite the International Convention Centre, the 590-room hotel boasts a restaurant and three bars as well as a swimming pool and fitness centre. There are also nine meeting and event rooms ranging in size from 19 to 508 square metres, as well as a ballroom with capacity for up to 450 guests.

Stay social with Delta

Delta Air Lines has introduced free in-flight mobile messaging services. Rolling out from October, the service allows travellers to send real-time text messages as well as offering access to social media applications, such as Facebook and WhatsApp.

Cathay Barcelona boost

Cathay Pacific plans to boost its Hong Kong-Barcelona route to a year-round service from 15 April next year. The carrier will operate thrice-weekly flights on A350 aircraft until 1 July, when frequency will rise to four times weekly.

W Rome debut

W Hotels has plans to make its Italian debut. The 159-room W Rome is set to open in 2021, with a restaurant, rooftop bar, spa and fitness centre set to feature among its facilities.

W Brisbane debut

The W Brisbane is set to open in early 2018. The five-star hotel will be located on George Street in the city’s CBD and features 312 guestrooms, three restaurants and bars, a swimming pool, spa and 24-hour gym as well as 1,100sqm of meeting and event space. Reservations open in November.

Holiday Inn Cologne

InterContinental Hotels Group has opened another property in Germany. Located near the city’s Old Town, the Holiday Inn Express Cologne – City Centre features 323 rooms and a restaurant and bar.

Ritz-C in Koh Samui

Ritz-Carlton Hotel has opened a new hotel in Thailand. The Ritz-Carlton, Koh Samui features 175 suites and pool villas, six dining venues, a spa, fitness centre, swimming pool and a choice of flexible meeting spaces.

W Suzhou opens

A new W Hotels-branded property has opened in Greater China. The W Suzhou featured 379 rooms as well as 60 serviced apartments for those requiring longer stays. Located 90 minutes west of Shanghai, the property also boasts four dining options, a spa, fitness centre and indoor swimming pool as well as a wide range of meeting and event spaces catering for up to 891 guests.

Holiday Inn Qatar debut

InterContinental Hotels Group’s Holiday Inn brand has made its Qatar debut with the opening of the Holiday Inn Doha - The Business Park. The 307-room new-build hotel is located in the heart of the city’s business and financial district. The Business Park complex is home to financial, medical, government and commercial offices and is located just 15-minutes drive from Hamad International Airport. Guests can expect a choice of dining venues, a gym and an outdoor swimming pool, while conference organisers will appreciate the range of meeting and event facilities on offer, including a 907sqm ballroom.

Park Hyatt Mexico

Two new Park Hyatt hotels are in the pipeline for Mexico. The 162-room Park Hyatt Los Cabos is set to open in late 2020, while the 155-room Park Hyatt Mexico City is expected to open in early 2021.

Ibis Styles Ulaanbaatar

AccorHotels has opened its first property in Mongolia. The 95-room ibis Styles Ulaanbaatar Polaris hotel is located 15-minutes drive from Chinggis Khaan International Airport. The property features a restaurant as well as two meeting rooms that can host up to 100 guests for social events and business meetings.

InterContinental Hanoi

IHG has opened a new property in Vietnam. The 359-room InterContinental Hanoi Landmark72 is located in the city’s new central business district, only five minutes from the National Convention Centre and less than 40 minutes from Noi Bai International Airport. The hotel features a range of dining options, a swimming pool and fitness centre, a business centre and more than 3000sqm of meeting and event space.

Ibis rolls-out mobile check-in

Ibis, ibis Styles and ibis budget hotels in the UK all feature a new guest welcome program. Check-in desks have been replaced with ibis employees who are trained to greet guests on arrival and use mobile devices to check guests in. The new process speeds up check-in and check-out and offers guests a more personal experience.

Celebrity meeting place

Celebrity Cruises is launching a meeting venue at sea. ‘The Meeting Place’ will feature on board Celebrity Edge. The 182sqm space will feature soundproof dividers, A/V capabilities, varied seating options, private office space for event planners and a mobile bar.

Hilton Curio Sydney

Hilton Worldwide will debut its Curio brand in Australia later this year. The hotel group has signed a deal to manage the 182-room West Hotel Sydney, Curio Collection. Located near Barangaroo, the new-build hotel will feature a restaurant, bar, fitness centre and meeting room when it opend in December 2017.

Ritz-Carlton Bacara

A new Ritz-Carlton-branded property has opened in Santa Barbara, California. The 358-room Ritz-Carlton Bacara resort features five restaurants, three swimming pools, a spa and fitness centre, as well as more than 6,500sqm of indoor and outdoor meeting and event space.