News Briefs, Week of Feb. 29, 2016

Norwegian Air plans U.S.-Paris service

Low-cost carrier Norwegian Air will debut service between the U.S. and Paris this summer, launching July 29 between Paris and New York, Los Angeles and Fort Lauderdale. The routes will be Norwegian's first out of Paris. Norwegian already offers 38 U.S. routes between the U.S. and London; Copenhagen, Denmark; Oslo, Norway; and Stockholm, Sweden.

Grand Pineapple resort sold by Sandals
Sandals Resorts International sold its Grand Pineapple Beach Antigua resort to Elite Island Resorts, effective May 30. The 180-room resort will remain open as it transitions to its former name, Pineapple Beach Club, on June 1. Guests with bookings for arrivals after May 30 will be protected at the agreed-upon rate.

Princess guests to fall in sled-puppy love
Princess Cruises passengers on some Alaska cruises in 2016 will be able to play and pose with sled dog puppies as part of a program of local experiences. The Puppies in the Piazza concept brings junior sled dogs to the atrium of Princess ships for a meet and greet with passengers. Guests can interact with the animals, take pictures and meet the dog handlers responsible for training them, Princess said.

Carnival drink plans to add choices
Carnival Cruise Line will include pricier alcoholic drinks and specialty coffees in its Cheers beverage package, starting March 1. The package price will remain the same: $49.95 per person, per day, when purchased before the cruise and $54.95 onboard, even as the ceiling for included alcoholic drinks leaps from $10 to $50.

Disney ups the Star Wars treatment
Disney will increase the Star Wars programming at its Hollywood Studios park in Florida. A live stage show, "Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away," will debut on April 4, featuring film characters, and "Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular" will replace the park's current nightly fireworks show this summer. A stormtrooper march at various times each day also begins this spring. The new programming follows the park's Star Wars Launch Bay opening in December, with themed galleries and character encounters, and it precludes the building of Star Wars-themed lands at Hollywood Studios and at Disneyland Resort in Southern California, the company's largest single-themed expansion in its history.

Carnival Magic to get new bars, restaurants
Carnival Cruise Line's 3,690-passenger Carnival Magic is in drydock to get a package of upgrades including the RedFrog Rum Bar, BlueIguana Tequila Bar, Alchemy Bar, Guy's Burger Joint, and Pizzeria del Capitano, an offshoot of the Cucina del Capitano Italian restaurant, during a two-week renovation ending March 6. Delivered in 2011, the Magic is Carnival's second-newest ship. Previously sailing from Galveston, Texas, the Magic will reposition to Port Canaveral, Fla., in April.

New Marriott hotel is largest in The Hague
The Hague Marriott opened as the largest hotel in the Netherlands city after a four-month renovation. The property, the former Bel Air Hotel, has 306 rooms whose decor is "inspired by the city's coastline." The hotel also features an updated Greatroom Lobby, a ninth-floor executive lounge with city views and ocean views and bike rentals for its guests.

Friends & Colleagues
Karisma Hotels & Resorts welcomed Heather Krasnow as its director of marketing and David Black as the director of sales, trade. Krasnow joined Karisma after serving as the director of marketing for Resorts World, a subsidiary of the Genting Group. Before that, she ran her own marketing and public relations consultancy, HK Media, where she provided strategies for a number of high-profile companies, including Voyages to Antiquity. Black previously served as the director of sales for Resorts World Bimini, where he was responsible for building the sales department from the ground up. Before joining Resorts World Bimini, Black had his own consultancy, Black Label Hospitality, providing counsel for boutique luxury hotels. • • • American Airlines has promoted Ralph Lopez to its vice president of Miami hub operations. He succeeds Marilyn Devoe, who will retire this summer after nearly 40 years with the carrier. Lopez has been with American for more than 20 years, most recently serving as the managing director of London Heathrow operations. He will oversee more than 11,000 Miami-based American employees. • • • El Al Israel Airlines named Michal Ben Yacov its West Coast regional manager, leading its sales and marketing efforts in California, Arizona, Alaska, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Washington, Wyoming and Utah. Ben Yacov has been with the airline since 1988, and she has served in a variety of positions, most recently as the revenue manager for transatlantic routes. • • • Seabourn has appointed Brian Badura director of public relations and strategic initiatives. Badura joins Seabourn after spending the past 15 years as a public affairs officer for the U.S. Navy, where he oversaw significant media events, including ship deployments and homecomings of interest to various media outlets.


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