Travel Weekly's Europe E-letter: June 11, 2007

MADRID'S 200-YEAR-OLD PRADO MUSEUM completed a $202.6 million restoration of the 17th century cloister of the monastery of San Jeronimo el Real. The improvements, which also include galleries for temporary exhibitions, increased the museum's space by 50%. The 167,023 square feet of additional space includes an underground area that connects the new building to the original Villanueva structure. The official inauguration will be in October. For museum information, visit http://museoprado.mcu.es/home.html.

AMSTERDAM AIRPORT SCHIPHOL was awarded Europe's Best Airport Award 2007 by the Airports Council International. The prize was awarded in the category of airports with annual passenger numbers exceeding 25 million. Schiphol served 46.1 million passengers and handled more than 1.5 million tons of cargo in 2006, ranking as Europe's fourth-largest passenger and third-largest cargo airport. Airports were judged on retail, security, facilities, community relationship, environmental awareness and service.

THE WYNDHAM HOTELS AND RESORTS BRAND will enter the U.K. with the reflagging of The Conrad London, the five-star, all-suite hotel of Hilton Hotels Corp. The property will become the Wyndham London-Chelsea Harbour. A Wyndham Hotel Group International subsidiary, Chelsea Harbour Management, will operate the 160-unit hotel under a 20-year agreement with the owner, Blue Harbour 2, a privately held entity in the U.K.

AUTO EUROPE is debuting scooter-rental service in France and Italy that will enable visitors to do their exploring like the locals do. Italian Vespas are available for rent in Rome, Venice, Milan and Florence, while Yamaha YP 125 Majesty scooters are available in Paris, Marseille, Nice and Cannes. In addition to saving money on gas, the company is touting the benefits of sidewalk parking and ease of maneuvering in high-traffic locations. To book, see www.autoeurope.com/scooters.cfm.

THE EMPIRE RIVERSIDE HOTEL HAMBURG, a four-star property set to open Nov. 1, is accepting reservations. All 328 rooms, which were designed by British architect David Chipperfield, will offer views of the city of Hamburg, the harbor or the River Elbe. The hotel will also feature a rooftop bar called 20up, located on the 20th floor and dominated by floor-to-ceiling windows. For details, go to www.hotel-hamburg.de.

Europe Editor: Felicity Long

Phone: (781) 659-1301

[email protected]

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

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