News briefs, week of Dec. 19, 2016

Carnival to get third Vista-class vessel


Carnival Cruise Line will receive a third Vista-class ship in 2019, a vessel that had originally been designated for Carnival Corp.'s P&O Cruises Australia brand (the 2008-built Carnival Splendor will move to P&O). The 3,954-passenger Carnival Vista launched last year, and the second in the class, the Carnival Horizon, is scheduled for delivery in 2018.

Norwegian Escape heads to N.Y. in '18
Norwegian Cruise Line's newest and largest ship, the Norwegian Escape, will move from Miami to New York in summer 2018, offering seven-day cruises to Bermuda from April through September. Moving the Escape to New York will leave the Norwegian Getaway as Norwegian's only seven-day Caribbean ship in Miami.

DOT levies AA largest tarmac delay fine
The DOT fined American Airlines $1.6 million for violating the rule prohibiting carriers from keeping aircraft on tarmacs for more than three hours without giving passengers the chance to deplane, the largest fine DOT has levied for the rule. AA let 27 planes remain on the tarmac for more than three hours between 2013 and 2015.

Florida Gov.: No Zika transmission in state
Florida governor Rick Scott said there are no active Zika transmission zones in Florida, with South Beach losing that unwanted status. A 1.5-square-mile area of South Beach was designated a Zika transmission zone on Aug. 19.

Alaska Air completes Virgin America deal
Alaska Airlines completed its $2.6 billion acquisition of Virgin America last week, eight days after the Department of Justice approved the deal, making the combined companies the fifth-largest airline in the U.S. Alaska has not decided whether the Virgin America brand will be retained. Virgin America tickets are now for sale at Alaskaair.com and Virginamerica.com.

First U.S. Atlantis to open on Oahu
The first Atlantis Resort in the U.S. will open in Oahu's Ko Olina resort district with about 800 rooms and 524 residences. The 26-acre site will have a waterpark and aquarium. It will be developed by China-based Oceanwide and be managed by Kerzner International Holdings. No opening date has been set.

China's HNA acquires Carlson Hotels
HNA Tourism Group acquired Carlson Hotels, making the Beijing-based company a 51% owner of Europe-based Rezidor Hotel Group, as well. HNA didn't disclose what it paid for Carlson, which oversees more than 1,100 hotels under the Radisson, Radisson Blu and Park Plaza brands. HNA has until early January to bid for the remaining shares of Rezidor or reduce its stake to less than 30%.

Sandals upgrades a Jamaica resort
Sandals Resorts renamed its Sandals Whitehouse in Jamaica Sandals South Coast and will give it 12 overwater bungalows, an overwater bar called Latitudes and an overwater wedding chapel with a glass-floor aisle. Sandals this year opened its first overwater suites at Sandals Royal Caribbean in Montego Bay.

Friends & Colleagues
The Priceline Group has appointed Glenn Fogel to serve as its CEO, effective Jan. 1. Fogel, who currently serves as Priceline's head of strategy and executive vice president of corporate development, will replace interim CEO Jeff Boyd, the company's board chairman, who stepped in when Darren Huston resigned in April. Fogel has been with Priceline for 16 years and has served as head of strategy and planning since 2010 and as executive vice president of corporate development since 2009. • • • Sean Menke, Sabre's executive vice president and president of Sabre Travel Network, has been named the company's president and CEO and also joins Sabre's board, effective Dec. 31. Menke replaces Tom Klein, who held those positions since 2013. Menke has been with Sabre since October 2015 and prior to that was CEO of Frontier Airlines. Sabre also named Larry Kellner its executive chairman; he currently serves as nonexecutive chairman of the board. • • • Hertz Global Holdings president and CEO John Tague is stepping down on Jan. 2 after leading the firm for more than two years. Tague will be replaced by Kathryn Marinello, a former General Electric executive. Marinello currently serves as a senior adviser for Ares Management and previously served as CEO for several companies. • • • Lodging executive Chris Austin has been named senior vice president of global sales and marketing for Seabourn starting in January. Austin will head brand management, marketing and public relations for the Seattle-based company. He most recently was vice president of global leisure, luxury and total market coverage sales at Starwood Hotels and Resorts. Austin succeeds John Delaney, who became president of Windstar Cruises earlier this year. • • • Travel-technology company Passport Online tapped Rick Nagle to be its president and CEO, replacing Greg Kott. Kott had been Passport Online's president and CEO since 2000. Nagle has been a member of Passport Online's board since its founding in 1995.

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