Southwest, WestJet eye connect points
Southwest named Las Vegas, Orlando and Tampa as the most likely connect points for its planned U.S.-Canada codeshare with WestJet. In a DOT filing, the carrier said the two airlines would most likely link up for service to and from Calgary, Toronto or Vancouver. The two airlines plan to start marketing the flight combinations during the first half of this year.

Three Starwoods to be reflagged
Starwood said it will terminate management contracts this year for three hotels in the South Pacific, by "mutual agreement" with owner Louis Wane: the Sheraton Hotel Tahiti; the Sheraton Moorea; and the Bora Bora Nui Resort & Spa, a Luxury Collection Resort. A firm date was not set. Starwood will continue to manage other hotels in the region under its St. Regis and Le Meridien brands.

Marriott reopens Islamabad hotel
The Islamabad Marriott Hotel, closed after a fatal terrorist bombing on Sept. 20, has reopened. Marriott International donated $300,000 to a philanthropic foundation of the hotel's owning group, the Hashoo Group, to assist employees and their families.

Carbon kiosks OK'd for SFO terminals
The San Francisco Airport Commission approved a plan to install carbon-offset kiosks, where passengers can buy carbon offsets. The kiosks are expected to offer a range of environmental projects. The one-year pilot test is slated to begin in March or April, putting SFO on track to be the first airport in the U.S. with such a program.

New York claims record year in '08
New York's visitor industry set records in 2008, as 47 million visitors spent an estimated $30 billion -- both all-time highs, according to NYC & Company, the city's tourism promotion agency. An estimated 11% increase in international visitors fueled the growth. New York said it surpassed Orlando and Las Vegas in arrivals and spending in 2007 and expects the 2008 results to keep it in the lead among U.S. cities.

Aer Lingus to base aircraft in London
Aer Lingus plans to start basing four A320s at London Gatwick in April to fill a void left by other carriers who are cutting back on short-haul European flights. The carrier hopes to double that number within a year. The move will mark Aer Lingus' first operations base outside of Ireland.

Continental shifts last Gatwick flight
Continental is moving its seasonal Cleveland-London service from Gatwick to Heathrow when the service resumes; it runs from May 2 to Sept. 26. The move means the carrier will have all its London operations at Heathrow.

Delta stock sale raises $196 million
Delta completed its sale of about 18.2 million shares for $196 million to pay for withholding taxes assessed on equity given to its employees as part of the merger deal to buy Northwest. The airline sold the common stock through a distribution agreement with Citigroup Global Markets. The airline used shares held in the company's treasury instead of going through a new issue.

Friends & Colleagues

Carnival Corp. promoted two executives to senior vice president positions: Rodney Dofort to senior vice president of corporate casino operations and Giora Israel to senior vice president of port and destination development. Dofort joined Carnival in 1983 as a casino supervisor at a Bahamas hotel then owned by Carnival, and in 1988 he was named vice president of casino operations for Carnival Corp. He currently oversees all shipboard casino operations for Carnival Corp.'s 11 brands. Israel joined Carnival Corp. in 1992 as director of special projects. He is also president of three ports operated by Carnival, in Long Beach, Calif.; Cozumel, Mexico; and Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos. • • • Celia A. Roberts has been named general manager of Rosalie Bay, a new four-star resort opening in Dominica early next year. Roberts formerly headed her own consulting firm that specialized in business marketing and management for hotels and tourism associations. • • • Gary C. Sadler has been named senior vice president of sales, North America, for Unique Vacations, the worldwide representatives for Sandals Resorts, Beaches Resorts, the Royal Plantation Collection and Grand Pineapple Beach Resorts. Sadler, a 20-year Sandals veteran, was director of sales and marketing for Unique Vacations Canada for 10 years and most recently was vice president of sales for Canada. • • • Kevin Sinnett has been named general manager of Ladera resort in St. Lucia. Sinnett spent 25 years as a pilot in the U.S. Navy and served as a commander of a naval squadron and a fleet of eight Navy aircraft. • • • Intrawest announced the appointment of Frank DeBerry to the position of president and COO at the Mountain Creek resort in Vernon, N.J. DeBerry began his career with Intrawest in 1998. Prior to his latest appointment, DeBerry served as vice president and general manager of Mountain Creek.

JDS Travel News JDS Viewpoints JDS Africa/MI