Travel Weekly's Europe E-letter: Aug. 30, 2006

SCEPTRE TOURS, a wholesale operator specializing in independent vacation packages to Ireland, has added a Scotland product line. The six-night Scotland Tartan Package, which includes the first night's accommodations at the Jury's Inn Glasgow, five Discover Bed & Breakfasts and a three-door, standard car rental, is priced from $349 per person, double, not including air fare. The rate is valid from Oct. 1 to March 31. Visit www.SceptreTours.com.

TRAVEL AGENTS can offer their clients a free category upgrade on a car rental when they purchase a France Rail 'n' Drive pass from Rail Europe through Oct. 31. The France Rail 'n' Drive pass combines two days of first-class train travel with a two-day car rental, starting at $265 for an economy car. The offer is valid on car rental pickups before Dec. 14, and France Rail 'n' Drive must be booked in North America. Visit http://agent.raileurope.com.

HOST HOTELS & RESORTS entered into an agreement to purchase the Hotel Arts Barcelona, a Ritz-Carlton property, for about $534 million by its European joint venture. The 483-room, waterfront hotel, which completed a comprehensive guest room renovation in June, also features 24,000 square feet of meetings space, five restaurants and a full-service spa. The transaction includes the purchase of an 80,000-square-foot casino that is leased to a third-party operator. Visit www.hosthotels.com.

 

AMERICAN AIRLINES is poised to replace its single-class, Boeing 757 service to Shannon, Ireland, from Boston with daily, wide-body service. The carrier also will fly daily to Shannon with two-class, Boeing 767 service from its Chicago hub. The changes take effect Oct. 28 and will be operated in conjunction with American's existing Chicago-Dublin service. Visit www.aa.com.

THE FIVE-STAR Hotel Okura Amsterdam unveiled the Suite, an accommodation that cost nearly $3 million to create and is billed as the most luxurious in the Benelux countries. At 5,390 square feet, the suite occupies two top floors and boasts a nearly 360-degree view of Amsterdam. Other features include two master bedrooms, marble floors, a fiber-optic chandelier, a glass stairway with LED lighting and a private cinema. The price, including limousine service to and from Schiphol Airport and the services of a suite manager, is about $13,000 a night. To book it, visit www.okura.nl.

Europe Editor:

Felicity Long

Phone: (781) 659-1301

[email protected]

For promotional opportunities in the E-letters, contact [email protected].

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