Carnival to boost gratuities for crew
Carnival Cruise Lines is boosting the recommended gratuity from $10 to $11.50 per person per day for cruises departing on or after Dec. 1. The amounts are automatically added to shipboard accounts for onboard purchases, but guests can raise or lower them, before checkout. Carnival said the increase, its first since 2001, puts it on a par with most other cruise lines.
JetBlue adds link to Indian carrier
JetBlue added India's Jet Airways to its list of interline partners for international travel. The deal simplifies interline ticketing and baggage transfers, enabling JetBlue passengers to connect with Jet Airways at New York Kennedy for nonstop service to Brussels or onward travel to points in India.
Altour to acquire London agency
Altour is acquiring Walsh International Travel, a primarily corporate agency in London, for an undisclosed sum. The deal is effective Dec. 1. Altour, which already has a London office, said Walsh will continue to operate as a "separate business division within the Altour Group."
Marriott plans 7th NYC Courtyard
Marriott disclosed plans for another New York hotel, a 168-room Courtyard that will occupy floors 3 to 17 of a 17-story building at Sixth Avenue and 35th Street, the former Atlantic Bank of New York building. Retail space will occupy the ground floor. Construction will begin this fall, and developers will preserve the 1928 facade. The hotel is expected to open next year.
Marriott inks deal for Bahrain project
Marriott International reached an agreement for the first JW Marriott luxury hotel in the island nation of Bahrain in 2016. The JW Marriott Manama, Bahrain Hotel will have 274 rooms and 102 residences as well as five restaurants and more than 17,000 square feet of meetings space. The 50-story hotel will be part of a $2.5 billion development.
Sonesta Hotels to be acquired
Sonesta Hotels agreed to be acquired by Hospitality Properties Trust, a real estate investment trust that owns 288 properties in North America. The deal includes ownership of the 400-room Royal Sonesta in Cambridge, Mass., and the lease on a 483-room hotel in New Orleans. Sonesta expects to retain its management contracts and, possibly, to manage other HPT properties. The deal is expected to close by next March.
Kimpton property sets opening date
Kimpton Hotels set a Dec. 1 grand opening for the 186-room Surfcomber Miami in South Beach, an art deco classic previously branded by Doubletree. Kimpton took over management of the hotel and began a renovation in April.
US Airways returns res jobs to U.S.
US Airways repatriated 400 jobs to U.S. call centers, fulfilling a commitment to employees to handle all U.S.-originating general reservations calls in the U.S. by Nov. 1. The carrier has call centers in Phoenix; Reno, Nev.; and Winston-Salem, N.C., plus a center in England that handles international callers.
Friends & Colleagues
Charles Petruccelli, American Express' president of global business travel, will retire on Dec. 31 after 36 years with the company. Petruccelli has spent 36 years with American Express, the past 10 as head of its global business travel division. He led the integration of Rosenbluth International with American Express and created joint ventures in China, Japan, Italy and Spain. Before heading global business travel, Petruccelli was in charge of international corporate services. Kim Goodman will replace Petruccelli as president of global business travel. She is currently American Express' president of merchant services in the Americas. • • • Corinthia Hotels appointed Liam Lambert as its COO. Prior to joining Corinthia, he served as president of Oberoi Hotels & Resorts, and before that he was director of operations in Europe, Africa and the Middle East for Mandarin Oriental. • • • Jennifer Fox has been appointed president of Fairmont Hotels & Resorts. Fox arrives at Fairmont from InterContinental Hotels Group, where she most recently served as COO, managed operations, continental Europe. Prior to this, she held a range of senior leadership positions in brand marketing, including global brand manager for both Sheraton and InterContinental. Fox succeeds Chris Cahill, who will focus on his duties as COO of Fairmont Raffles Hotels International, Fairmont's parent company.