News Briefs, Week of Nov. 9, 2015

Haimark: Cruises not affected by Chapter 11


Coastal cruise operator Haimark Line, Ltd. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization, calling it a bid to resolve a dispute with the owner of its only ship, the St. Laurent, following an accident that damaged the vessel in June. The bankruptcy does not affect the affiliated Haimark Ltd., which runs river cruise vessels, and Haimark Line said its operations are not impacted.

ARC group creates debit memo codes
ARC's Debit Memo Working Group created standard reason codes for all major categories of debit memos including commissions, taxes, refunds, exchanges and credit card chargebacks, so agents and carriers can better analyze why debit memos are issued and reduce them. ARC expects to distribute the codes to carriers and agencies by the end of March.

AA to launch service from LAX to Tokyo
American Airlines said it would begin selling tickets for service between Los Angeles and Tokyo's Haneda Airport on Nov. 8 for daily service starting Feb. 11. American and Delta Air Lines continue to be at odds over the Haneda landing slot that American will use for the flight. Airlines desire slots at Haneda because it is closer to central Tokyo than the city's larger Narita Airport.

4 Hurtigruten ships to get makeovers
Hurtigruten will renovate four of its 1990s-built ships in 2016, starting with the Polarlys in January, followed by the Kong Harald, Nordkapp and Nordnorge. Each ship is scheduled to be in drydock for about three weeks to refurbish common areas, cafes and bistros, and aft decks.

S.F. rejects proposal to limit Airbnb rentals

San Franciscans defeated a ballot measure by a 55% to 45% margin that would have limited short-term home rentals to 75 days per year. Airbnb, the worldwide leader in short-term rental listings, spent $6.6 million campaigning against the measure, which would have also forced owners to pay occupancy taxes and authorized neighbors to sue owners for violating the rules.

Iceland's Wow to fly to LAX, SFO in 2016
Icelandic low-cost carrier Wow Air will begin flying from Reykjavik to Los Angeles and San Francisco in summer 2016, four and five times per week, respectively. The cities will be the third and fourth U.S. markets for Wow, which started its U.S. service this year from Reykjavik to Boston and Baltimore. The airline offers connections to 14 European destinations from Iceland.

Anthem arrives, and Royal orders another
Royal Caribbean ordered a fifth Quantum-class ship with an expected delivery in fall 2020 from shipbuilder Meyer Werft. Meanwhile, the Anthem of the Seas, sister to the 4,180-passenger Quantum of the Seas, arrived in the U.S. last week. The third Quantum, the Ovation of the Seas, is scheduled for an April delivery and the fourth in 2019.

New Thomas Cook hotel brand launching
British travel company Thomas Cook Group plans to launch a new boutique hotel brand, Casa Cook, on the Greek island of Rhodes in May and will add three more Casa Cook hotels by mid-2017. The Casa Cook Rhodes will have 90 rooms, vintage furniture and local cuisine. Daybeds and hammocks will surround the swimming pool.

Friends & Colleagues
Veteran sales executive Camille Olivere has joined World Travel Holdings, where she will be senior vice president for partner brands. In her new role, Olivere will oversee the cruise programs for nationally known airline, hotel, retail and online travel agency brands. Olivere spent the past eight months with Club Med in Coral Gables, Fla., where she was senior vice president of U.S. sales. She had a longer tenure at Norwegian Cruise Line, where she left as senior vice president of sales about the time that Norwegian was combined with Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Oceania Cruises into Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings. Olivere, who will be based in Fort Lauderdale, said she is thrilled to be joining World Travel Holdings, parent to brands such as CruiseOne and Cruises Inc. "I have really enjoyed working with the Club Med team and have grown fond of the product," she said. "Naturally, I will continue to be a brand advocate in my new role." • • • Two Travel Leaders Group veterans were named to new posts within the company last week. Peter Vlitas, most recently the senior vice president of airline sales and marketing in the Protravel International division, and a 17-year veteran of Protravel, was named senior vice president of airline relations for all of Travel Leaders Group. Jose Ferreira was named the chief technology officer of Travel Leaders Franchise, Consortium and Leisure Group business units. He replaced Tiffany Glass, who accepted a leadership role at a care services company. Ferreira most recently served as vice president of business solutions within the Tzell Travel division.

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