Travel Weeklys Hawaii E-letter: March 21, 2005

BLUE HAWAIIAN helicopter tours expanded its operations to include the island of Kauai. It already offered tours on Maui and the Big Island. In business since 1985, Blue Hawaiian operates the largest fleet of tourism-only helicopters. The new operation is based in Lihue, at the Harbor Mall, across from Kalapaki Bay and the Kauai Marriott. The first tour offered on Kauai by Blue Hawaiian is a 50-minute island flight. Visit www.bluehawaiian.com for more information.

GARY KELLY, Southwest Airlines CEO, said the code-share agreement between ATA and Southwest, announced last month, has already been profitable for the carrier. Kelly stated that booking expectations match what executives hoped to achieve. When asked about whether Southwest patrons would soon be able to redeem frequent-flier miles for jaunts to Hawaii, Kelly said that it was something the executive board was discussing.

HARMONY AIRLINES, a Vancouver-based carrier, signed an interline agreement with Hawaiian Airlines earlier this month. The agreement enables Harmony passengers access to Hawaiians interisland flights as well as Hawaiians flights between Hawaii and Tahiti, American Samoa and Sydney, for instance. In addition, Harmony president and CEO Gary Collins alluded to the possibility of a code-share agreement with Hawaiian Airlines in the near future. Harmony recently announced increased service from Vancouver to Hawaii this summer, with four weekly flights to Honolulu and three weekly flights to Maui.

THE KAHALA MANDARIN ORIENTAL on Oahu introduced a series of cooking demonstrations that will take place at the hotels Culinary Academy. The courses offer trade secrets from professional chefs, who prepare multiple items off their menus, complete with thorough explanations and a tasting at the end of the session. Participants take home recipes. Call (808) 739-8780 or visit www.mandarinoriental.com for pricing and more information.

A FEW MONTHS after the opening of the Westin Maui Resort & Spas new fitness and spa facility, the resort completed the private Pikake Spa Bridal Suite to accommodate the large number of weddings the hotel sees each day. Craig Anderson, general manager, said that during the summer months, the resort can have up to 15 weddings per day. The bridal suite is available to those who purchase the Spa Bridal Package, which includes hair styling, make-up, manicures and pedicures. The suite has two manicure/pedicure stations, food and beverage arrangements, massage services, a private dressing area and make-up application areas. Packages begin at $230. Visit www.westinmaui.com for more information.

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