Melia Azul Ixtapa to add convention center

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ol Melia Hotels & Resorts said the $22 million expansion of its Melia Azul Ixtapa is nearing completion with the opening of a convention center and tower scheduled for November.

The two-story convention center will offer 19,250 square feet of space that can be divided into seven meeting rooms. In addition, the top floor will house eight breakout rooms, a business center and an executive lounge.

The new tower will hold an additional 137 rooms, bringing the total room count to 410, including three Presidential and 67 Junior suites.

For information or reservations, call (800) 336-3542 or visit the Web at www.solmelia.com.

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Vallarta Adventures, a Puerto Vallarta tour company, launched a six-hour excursion to Talpa de Allende and Mascota.

Mascota is a 16th century agricultural town at the foot of the Sierra Madre mountains.

One of the stops on the Mascota tour is the colonial town of Jalisco, established in 1592 by Spanish colonists.

Talpa de Allende is one of the most important religious centers in Mexico. Talpa is famous throughout Mexico for its Gothic church dedicated to the Virgin Rosario de Talpa. Pilgrims from all over Mexico journey there to pray for miracles.

The six-hour tour costs $130 per person, including transportation via private air charter. For information or to book, call Vallarta Adventures at (866) 256-2739 or visit www.vallarta-adventures.com.

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Viva Resorts introduced the Viva Junior's Club aimed at travelers between the ages of 13 and 18.

The complimentary program will be in effect at Viva's all-inclusive, child-friendly properties in Mexico, the Bahamas and the Dominican Republic.

Viva recently entered into an alliance with Wyndham International to rebrand its resorts as Viva Wyndham Resorts.

Viva Resorts' Mexico properties are the Viva Maya and Viva Azteca, both on the Riviera Maya, and the Viva Vallarta in Puerto Vallarta.

Effective Dec. 1, the contact number for Viva will be (800) WYNDHAM; the Web site will be located at www.wyndham.com. In the meantime, find information at www.vivaresorts.com.

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Apple Vacations launched a travel agent incentive promotion called King of the Palace in conjunction with Palace Resorts in Mexico.

Under the promotion, agents can earn a $50 bonus and 1,500 Bonus Royalties Points for every new air-inclusive charter that includes at least three nights at a Palace Resorts property.

Bookings must be made by Feb. 6 for travel during the same period from Chicago, Denver, Detroit, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, St. Louis and San Francisco.

After 10 bookings, Apple will award agents an additional $250 bonus and an extra 10,000 Bonus Royalties Points.

For information, log onto www.applevacations.com and click on "Just For Travel Agents."

To contact reporter Jorge Sidron, send e-mail to [email protected].

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