Some Dispatches From Scotland

During the ASTA World Travel Congress in Glasgow, comedian and actor Robert Klein was among the guests at Glasgow's Moat House Hotel who had to evacuate owing to a fire alarm. Later, as master of ceremonies for the Travel and Tourism Awards, Klein noted that the alarm was set off by steam from a shower being used by one of the guests. "If a fire starts, does the water alarm go off?" Klein wondered.

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They may call the new auditorium at Glasgow's exhibition center "the Armadillo," because that's what it looks like from the outside, but Klein saw something different. This is the first event ever held in the auditorium, which was completed just a few weeks before the start of the Congress. Klein described the new structure as "a beehive, a Slinky, a horn of plenty, a cornucopia."

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Insider shared a shuttle bus with a number of ASTA World Travel Congress delegates on their way from Glasgow Airport to their downtown hotels. As we entered the downtown area, one agent seemed taken aback by a big sign on top of one of the hotels, with a huge reindeer and the message "Book now for Christmas." "I just finished with Christmas," she said.

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J. W. "Bill" Marriott was inducted into ASTA's Travel Hall of Fame at the Society's World Travel Congress, and he seemed particularly pleased about the honor given the list of sponsors for the awards speech. In his acceptance speech, Marriott said, "I'm particularly proud to be standing here at an event sponsored by Hilton." Then he added, referring to the Hilton Hotels Corp. president and CEO, "I don't think Steve Bollenbach knows I'm here." It should be noted that the awards ceremony also was sponsored by Visa, Royal Caribbean, Alamo and Cameron Mackintosh International.

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The ubiquitous Hard Rock Cafe doesn't seem to have a presence in Glasgow yet, but, downtown, Insider did pass by a Solid Rock Cafe.

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