Poland ports -- air and sea -- welcome hotels

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here's much ado in central Europe, from new airport and seaport digs in northern Poland to reborn Saxon cathedrals and arts packages to Austrian cities.

A 226-room Courtyard by Marriott is set to open at Warsaw Airport this fall. The hotel -- to feature a 24-hour market, 24-hour business center and 60-terminal cyber cafe -- will be the first in the Polish capital to offer high-speed Internet access in every room.

Introductory rates start at $51 per night, weekends, and $85, weeknights, until March 31. For details, visit www.marriott.com.

Also in Poland, Radisson SAS broke ground on a 150-room hotel in Gdansk, a popular Baltic cruise port, to open in 2005. The chain also is adding outlets in Katowice and Lublin to its properties in Krakow, Szczecin, Warsaw and Wroclaw. For more information, visit www.radissonsas.com.

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Another finishing touch will be added to Berlin's revitalized Potsdamer Platz area -- once a no-man's land -- come December, when the 302-room Ritz-Carlton Berlin opens next to the Sony Center.

Rates were not available at press time, but check www.ritz-carlton.com for updates.

Meanwhile, the Jewish Museum Berlin features an exhibit dedicated to its architect, Daniel Libeskind, until Dec. 14. Displays include his winning plans for the reconstruction of New York's World Trade Center.

Architecture fans also can head south to Dresden to check out progress on the reconstruction of the famed Frauenkirche, or Church of Our Lady, destroyed in World War II raids.

The 200-foot-high, 13,000-ton dome finally has been completed; for tour information, visit www.frauenkirche-dresden.de.

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In Prague, Czech Republic, HK Hotel's music-themed Aria Hotel opened in the capital's Mala Strana district.

The 52-room hotel boasts a concert chamber and in-room access to a computerized music database, all on four floors dedicated to jazz, opera and contemporary and classical music.

The introductory rate of about $254 per night includes breakfast, chauffeured airport transfer and other perks. For details or to book, call (212) 204-5411 or visit www.ariahotel.net.

Meanwhile, railpass holders now can get to Prague more easily thanks to Rail Europe's new Prague Excursion Pass, available with the Eurailpass or Eurail Selectpass (neither is valid in the Czech Republic).

For $40 (second class) or $55 (first), pass holders can travel roundtrip from any border point to the capital; agent pay is 7% to 9%. To book, call Rail Europe at (888) 382-7245 or visit http://agent.raileurope.com.

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Music and museum junkies, take note: The Austrian Tourist Office in New York has teamed up with Virtuoso agencies to offer classical music- and art-themed packages through Oct. 31.

The five-night Music in Vienna and Salzburg package starts from $1,799, per person, land only, and includes accommodations, opera and concert tickets, and walking tours.

And, celebrating the reopening of the Albertina Museum, the Art in Vienna and Graz deal -- priced from $1,023 per person, land only -- includes museum tickets, dinners and tours in both cities. Call (800) 923-4274 or www.austria.info/us.

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Clients also can head to nearby Ljubljana, Slovenia, where the ISCM World Music Days 2003 festival, Sept. 26 to Oct. 3, will feature new music by 2,000 artists from 50 countries. For details, visit www.wmd2003.s5.net.

To contact reporter Kenneth Kiesnoski, send e-mail to [email protected].

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