News Briefs, Week of May 21, 2012

American to boost U.S.-Brazil flights

American filed plans at the Transportation Department to boost its U.S.-Brazil service by 17 weekly flights this fall. Nonstop routes from New York to Sao Paulo and Miami to Rio would get a second daily flight on Oct. 1 and Dec. 15, respectively, while service from Miami to Recife and Salvador would be restructured to provide five weekly nonstops on each route, beginning Nov. 15. American said its plan is consistent with the cap on U.S.-Brazil flights because not all of the allowable weekly frequencies have been claimed by other carriers.

More long-hauls for Reagan National
The Transportation Department authorized four U.S. airlines to launch new long-haul routes from Washington's Reagan National Airport to points beyond the airport's traditional 1,250-mile perimeter. The routings are: Alaska Airlines to Portland, Ore.; JetBlue to San Juan; Southwest to Austin; and Virgin America to San Francisco. Each carrier received slots for one daily roundtrip and must start service by Sept. 8.

Allegiant adds Maui to Hawaii plan
Allegiant Air, which is breaking into the Hawaii market in late June with Honolulu service from Fresno, Calif., and Las Vegas, will add five more routes, including a Maui segment, in mid-November. From Bellingham, Wash., the discount line will launch service to Maui on Nov. 14 and to Honolulu the following day. Later that week it plans to add Honolulu nonstops from Eugene, Ore., and Stockton and Santa Maria, Calif., which is on the Central Coast some 150 miles north of Los Angeles.

Marriott develops hotel in Ethiopia
Marriott International is continuing its expansion in Africa with a plan to debut its first two operations in Ethiopia, with the 2014 opening of a Marriott Executive Apartments followed by a 209-room Courtyard by Marriott in 2015, both in Addis Ababa. Marriott said it will engage a local training provider to help recruit and train local residents for the estimated 200 jobs the two properties will create.

Hyatt reflags New Orleans hotel
The 254-room Hyatt French Quarter opened in New Orleans in a former Wyndham,which was reflagged after an $18 million renovation. A Hard Rock Cafe will open at the hotel early next year.

Sheraton to open in Iraq in 2015
Starwood plans to return to Iraq in 2015 with the planned opening of a 260-room Sheraton in Erbil, Iraq's fourth-largest city and capital of its Kurdistan region. Hilton and Marriott also have developments under way in Erbil.

RCCL to swap ships in Baltimore lineup
Royal Caribbean International will deploy the 1,950-passenger Grandeur of the Seas to Baltimore for the spring, summer and fall/winter seasons of 2013, replacing the 2,252-passenger Enchantment of the Seas, which will reposition to Cape Canaveral, Fla. The Enchantment will offer year-round three- and four-day Bahamas itineraries from Port Canaveral, replacing the Monarch of the Seas, which is being reassigned to the line's Spanish affiliate, Pullmantur.

Friends & Colleagues

Travel Leaders Corporate named Angie Licea senior vice president of business operations and technology development. Licea is a 25-year industry veteran, having previously served in a variety of management roles at American Express and Rosenbluth International. For most of the last four years, she served as American Express' vice president of global client services. • • • Brad Tilden is the new CEO of Alaska Air Group and its subsidiary carriers, Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air. Tilden, a 21-year veteran of Alaska Air Group, succeeds Bill Ayer, who served as CEO since 2002. Tilden will retain his role as president of Alaska Airlines, while Ayer remains Alaska Air Group chairman. • • • Rosewood Hotels & Resorts appointed Graeme Davis managing director of the Rosewood Mayakoba on Mexico's Riviera Maya. Davis was with Starwood Hotels & Resorts for the past 11 years at several resorts, including the Westin St. John Resort & Villas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Prior to Starwood, Davis held positions at Posadas Mexico, Tishman Hotel Co., Williams Hospitality and Stouffer Hotels. • • • Denihan Hospitality Group, a full-service hotel management and development company that owns and operates boutique hotels in major urban markets in the U.S., named Julie Purnell senior vice president of acquisitions and development. Purnell will be based at Denihan's newly opened development office in San Francisco. A 25-year hospitality industry veteran, Purnell has held executive posts with Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, House of Blues Hospitality, Loews Hotels and, most recently, Marriott International.


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