Travel Weekly's Asia-Pacific E-letter: June 21, 2004

SHANGRI-LA HOTELS AND RESORTS said it will open a five-star hotel in Ningbo, in China's Zhejiang province, in early 2007. The 550-room Shangri-La Hotel Ningbo will be in the city's major commercial district on Jiangdong Street, about a 20-minute drive from the airport. The hotel will be the group's second property in Zhejiang province following the opening of the Shangri-La Hotel Hangzhou in 1984. The hotel will feature the usual Shangri-La amenities, including five floors of Horizon Club rooms, 24-hour room service, dataports and broadband Internet access in every room, and wireless Internet access in public areas. The hotel will also feature a spa and fitness center, a business center and 21,500-square-foot ballroom.

CARLSON HOTELS ASIA PACIFIC said it signed agreements with the Fu Wah Int'l Group in China to manage two hotels under construction in Beijing. The Fu Wah Int'l Group will build the Regent Beijing, which is scheduled to open in September 2006, and the Park Plaza Wangfujing Beijing, which is due to open in December 2005. Both the 499-room Regent Beijing and the 216-room Park Plaza Wangfujing Beijing will be in a mixed-use complex under construction in the heart of Beijing's commercial district. Carlson Hotels Asia Pacific recently signed an agreement to manage a new Regent hotel in Ningbo.

EXPEDIA expanded its reach in the Asia-Pacific region as Expedia's WWTE private-label unit began powering hotel and car-rental bookings on the Eva Air Web site. The Taiwan-based carrier is WWTE's first airline partner in the region. Expedia publicized the partnership June 14; the capability was implemented on the Eva Web site at www.evaair.com more than a month ago.

UNITED on June 10 initiated daily service between its hub at San Francisco Airport and Beijing, China. The service uses a 777 aircraft with room for 10 in first class, 49 in business class and 194 in coach. In addition to Beijing, United also offers daily service between San Francisco and Shanghai, Chicago and Beijing, and Tokyo and Beijing. Also on June 10, United launched new, daily nonstop service between Chicago and Osaka, Japan. The flight is marketed in conjunction with All Nippon Airways, United's Star Alliance partner in Japan. The Chicago-Osaka service uses a 777 aircraft with room for 10 in first class, 45 in business class and 198 in coach.

KOREAN AIR AND JAPAN AIRLINES reached a code-sharing agreement on their flights between Korea's Incheon Airport and three Japanese cities, effective Aug. 1. Japan Airlines will operate four flights a week on the Komatsu-Seoul route. Korean Air, meanwhile, will operate a daily flight between Sapporo and Seoul, and five flights a week between Niigata and Seoul.

HERTZ is the newest member of China Southern Airlines' Sky Pearl Club frequent-flyer program. Starting July 1, members of Sky Pearl Club will be able to earn award credits and extra savings when renting a car at any of Hertz's 7,000 locations throughout the world. The Sky Pearl Cub is the largest frequent-flyer program in China, with more than 2 million members.

RITZ TOURS launched a "Tokyo in a Week" program priced from $1,099 per person, double. The package includes roundtrip air on American Airlines from Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Jose or San Diego; roundtrip airport transfers; hotel accommodations for five nights at the Akasaka Prince Hotel; daily breakfast at the hotel; a half-day sightseeing tour of Tokyo, including visits to the Imperial Palace, the Asakusa Temple and Tokyo Tower; and tour guides. For information or reservations, call (800) 900-2446 or visit www.ritztours.com.

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