Travel Weeklys Asia-Pacific E-letter: Sept. 27, 2004

THE HILTON KUALA LUMPUR, after a three-year absence from Malaysia, is back in business in the capital at a new location. The hotel, which was the first international hotel in Kuala Lumpur when it opened 30 years ago, is now adjacent to the KL Sentral Station. The hotel was originally located at Jalan Sultan Ismail. In 2001, Hilton International ended its management agreement with the hotels owners to focus on building the new hotel.

WROTHAM PARK STATION, a hotel on a property with working cattle on the banks of the Mitchell River in northern Queensland, Australia, welcomed its first guests on Sept. 6. Wrotham Park can accommodate a maximum of 20 guests in 10 private guest quarters. The accommodations, dining and living area, library and open bar feature pioneer designs and furnishings. Guest activities include guided tours on horseback, cattle mustering, fishing for barramundi, evening spotlight tours and stargazing. Rates at Wrotham Park start about $570 per person, per night, double, including all meals, beverages and activities. Travelers get to Wrotham Park Station via scheduled Skytrans air services from Cairns, private charter or four-wheel-drive vehicle. For information or reservations, call (800) 225 9849 or visit www.wrothampark.com.au.

AMERICAN AIRLINES said it will seek the Department of Transportations permission to begin daily nonstop service between Chicago and Shanghai, China, starting May 1, 2005. American would use a 777 aircraft with three classes of service. From Shanghai, American said it would offer connections to several Chinese cities through its partnership with China Eastern Airlines, which is based in Shanghai and is that citys largest carrier.

MEANWHILE, DELTA asked the DOT to grant it permission to fly daily nonstop service between Atlanta and Beijing starting in 2006, also aboard 777 aircraft. Not to be outdone in China, Continental Airlines applied to begin two routes to China from its Newark, NJ hub. Continental wants permission to inaugurate service to Beijing in the spring of 2005 and to Shanghai in the spring of 2006. Continental is proposing to operate daily flights, also with 777 aircraft. Continental already flies from Newark to Hong Kong.

LE MERIDIEN HOTELS AND RESORTS named Ashley Hansen regional director of sales for Asia. Hansen will be responsible for sales strategies and initiatives for Southeast Asia and will oversee Le Meridiens regional sales office in Singapore.

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