Outrigger acquired by private equity firm
KSL Capital Partners, owner of ski-resort company Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows and California's Monarch Beach Resort, will acquire Honolulu-based Outrigger Hotels and Resorts for an undisclosed sum. Outrigger has 37 hotels, condominium complexes and vacation rentals, with 6,500 rooms in Hawaii, Guam, Fiji, Thailand, Mauritius and the Maldives, and has been family-run since its 1947 founding.
Aruba, Airbnb ink deal on standards, taxes
Airbnb and the Aruba Tourism Authority made what the company calls the first partnership between Airbnb and a Caribbean country, addressing taxes, accommodation standards and regulations for Aruba's 1,360 Airbnb listings. Hosts there had 13,000 guests and earned on average $4,400 last year.
American gets slot to Beijing from LAX
The DOT chose American for its last slot to Beijing, from Los Angeles, saying Delta already offers West Coast-Beijing service (from Seattle) while American doesn't. American's daily service would be the last flight to Beijing the DOT can approve under the U.S.-China Air Transport Agreement, which caps weekly flights to Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou at 161.
Booking.com pilots a travel agent portal
Booking.com is piloting a platform enabling agents to book and manage accommodations. Called Booking.com for Travel Agents, it will enable agents to book and manage their reservations on a single dashboard as well as run reports and see an earnings breakdown.
Plans for sixth hotel at Universal Orlando
Loews Hotels & Resorts will open its sixth hotel at Universal Orlando in summer 2018, bringing its total on-site hotel rooms to 6,200. The 600-room Aventura Hotel will be Universal Orlando's first with a rooftop bar and grill. Loews also operates Cabana Bay Beach Resort, Sapphire Falls, Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Orlando, Loews Portofino Bay and Loews Royal Pacific Resort.
Oceania to homeport in NYC next summer
Oceania Cruises will make New York a seasonal homeport for its 684--passenger Insignia starting in August, where it will stay through October offering 10- and 11-day itineraries to Canada, New England and Bermuda. In 2018, the season will last from July to October.
DOT approves a Delta, Aeromexico venture
The DOT approved Delta and Aeromexico to jointly operate flights between the countries if the carriers surrender a portion of slots to low-cost competitors at capacity-restrained JFK Airport in New York and Benito Juarez in Mexico City. The DOT said the joint venture would bolster competition in the U.S.-Mexico market, where American and United dominate.
Times Journeys adds '36 Hours+' tours
The New York Times travel company, Times Journeys, partnered with Abercrombie & Kent to launch 36 Hours+, four-day itineraries inspired by the newspaper's "36 Hours" travel articles. Each trip includes three nights' hotel, two local tours and concierge service. There are no set departure dates, and activities such as a cooking class or a driving tour can be added separately.
Friends & Colleagues
Crystal Cruises has named Kris Endreson director of sales and marketing for the company's recently launched air division, which comprises Crystal Luxury Air and Crystal AirCruises. Endreson brings a 20-year track record of cruise and luxury travel industry experience. She most recently was with Silversea Cruises, where she served as vice president of field sales for the U.S. and Canada. • • • Brett Keller has been named CEO of Priceline.com, effective immediately. Keller, who has been serving as interim CEO since June, will report to Jeffery H. Boyd, who is chairman and interim CEO of the Priceline Group. Keller joined Priceline.com in 1999, serving most recently as COO of the business. Prior to that, he had been its chief marketing officer. • • • Aruba's minister of tourism, Otmar Oduber, resigned from his post on Nov. 3, according to Oduber's Facebook and Twitter accounts. Neither the Aruba Tourism Authority nor the Ministry of Tourism issued formal statements in response to his resignation, which was effective immediately. Oduber recently made waves as the architect of the controversial law Aruba passed in August restricting the number of all-inclusive hotel rooms on the island. • • • Kevin Dallas has been hired as the Bermuda Tourism Authority's CEO, effective Jan. 1. Dallas replaces Bill Hanbury, whose contract is expiring. A native Bermudian, Dallas comes to the tourism authority from Worldpay, an e-commerce company where he is chief product and marketing officer. The authority said it chose Dallas because its board "was keen to ensure that given the evolving global tourism marketplace, for Bermuda to stay ahead of the curve it had to move beyond traditional marketing."