News Briefs, Week of July 27, 2015

Carnival plans second terminal in Barcelona


Carnival Corp. has received approval to build and operate a second private cruise terminal in Barcelona. The company said it will spend about $33 million on the project. Construction is slated to start in 2016, and the facility could open as early as 2018. The terminal will be one of Europe's largest at nearly 125,000 square feet, Carnival said. Barcelona is a destination and homeport for seven of Carnival Corp.'s 10 cruise brands.

Jamaica's GoldenEye to add 26 beach huts
The GoldenEye resort in Orcabessa on Jamaica's north coast, an Island Outpost property, will debut 26 new Beach Huts by the end of the year. The resort, the one-time estate of James Bond author Ian Fleming now owned by Island Records founder Chris Blackwell, currently offers 19 units, including the signature Fleming Villa where the author penned all 14 Bond novels. The units will not be air conditioned but will be positioned to maximize the breezes from the ocean and surrounding hills. All will have beach or bay views and shuttered windows.

Loews now accepting bookings at Universal
Universal Orlando has begun accepting reservations for the Loews Sapphire Falls Resort, which is scheduled to open in the summer of 2016. The Caribbean-themed hotel will have 1,000 rooms, including more than 80 suites, and will be the fifth hotel at Universal Orlando. Amenities will include a 16,000-square-foot pool complete with a water slide and beach, as well as a game room. Sapphire Falls guests will have access to early theme park admission as well as complimentary water taxis or shuttles to Universal Studios Florida and Universal's Islands of Adventure.

AMResorts expanding in Jamaica, Mexico
AMResorts will open a resort in Jamaica and two in Mexico. All three properties will be newbuilds. The targeted opening of the 150-room Breathless Montego Bay Resort in late 2016 will mark the debut of the adults-only Breathless brand in Jamaica. Slated to open in 2017 in Mexico are the 500-room, adults-only Breathless Playa del Carmen Resort & Spa and the family-focused Dreams Villas Playa del Carmen, featuring 150 villas and 50 junior suites. The two resorts will be adjacent to each other in the Grand Coral gated development.

Golden Princess to sail seasonally in China
Princess Cruises said the Golden Princess will sail seasonal cruises from Tianjin starting in 2016, joining the Sapphire Princess in China. The Sapphire Princess has been sailing seasonally from Shanghai since 2014 and will start sailing year-round from the port in 2016. Both ships carry about 2,600 passengers.

MSC loyalty program revamped, renamed
MSC Cruises overhauled its rewards program for loyal guests, giving it a new name and adding a host of benefits and features. With the MSC Voyagers Club, new cruisers with the line will not have to start from scratch: MSC said it will honor the status earned by members of cruise loyalty programs at other lines. It will have five tiers, with the Welcome tier available to anyone who makes an MSC booking. The other tiers, Classic, Silver, Gold and Black, will award benefits based on a points system that takes account of both voyage duration and MSC's "experiences" service levels: Bella, Fantastica, Aurea and MSC Yacht Club. Points are also awarded for onboard spending and add-ons that are booked precruise.

Friends & Colleagues
Royal Caribbean International has named Jim Berra chief marketing officer. Berra will be responsible for all aspects of the cruise line's marketing program, including brand strategy and positioning, consumer and trade advertising, Web and loyalty marketing, research, brand development and communications. He joins Royal from Carnival Cruise Line, where he served as senior vice president and chief marketing officer since 2008. Previously, he served as senior vice president and general manager for Rodale Interactive, a publisher of health and wellness lifestyle magazines and books. His prior experience included stints with Starwood Hotels & Resorts and Hyatt Hotels & Resorts. • • • Gerry Lopez will succeed Jim Donald as president and CEO of Extended Stay America on Aug. 24. Donald will stay with the company as a senior adviser through the end of the year. Since 2009, Lopez had been president and CEO of AMC Entertainment Holdings, parent of the AMC movie theater chain, leading it through its initial public offering in December 2013. Donald joined Extended Stay in February 2012 and was at the helm during its own IPO in November 2013. • • • The Isramworld Portfolio of Brands selected Karen Esposito to lead its group division as director of group sales and operations. Esposito's group market experience includes positions with Trafalgar, Sceptre and Kuoni/Travel Bound. • • • The Hawaii Tourism Authority's board has appointed Rick Fried Jr. as its new chairman. He succeeds Aaron Sala. Craig Nakamura and Lorrie Stone will continue as co-vice chairs. Fried is a founding member of the law firm Cronin Fried Sekiya Kekina & Fairbanks. He is the past president of the Hawaii Association for Justice and has served with the Honolulu Symphony, Hawaii Theatre, Shriners Hospitals for Children and the American Civil Liberties Union. • • • The Ogg Marketing Group has named Andy Ogg director of sales and marketing. He is the son of Ogg Marketing Group owners and retail industry leaders Joanie and Tom Ogg. He most recently served as sales manager for UTV Canada.

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