News briefs, week of Sept. 5, 2016

HAL repositioning ship from Med to Alaska

Holland America Line said it will move the Oosterdam next summer from its currently scheduled deployment in the Mediterranean to sail in Alaska instead. HAL attributed the change to "the increasing demand for more Alaska cruises." The line will have seven ships cruising in Alaska next summer.

The Beekman to open next month in N.Y.
The Beekman, a Thompson Hotel, will open in a 135-year-old building in lower Manhattan next month. The 287-room hotel features a nine-story Victorian atrium topped by a pyramid-shaped skylight and restaurants by celebrity chef Tom Colicchio and restaurateur Keith McNally.

Delta, Spirit set date for Havana service
Delta and Spirit have become the first airlines to announce a start date for regularly scheduled Havana service. Both carriers will begin flying to the Cuban capital on Dec. 1. Delta will fly daily to Havana from Miami, New York and Atlanta; tickets go on sale Sept. 10. Spirit will fly twice daily between Fort Lauderdale and Havana; ticket sales began last week.

S. Carolina resort gets a $100M expansion
The Montage Palmetto Bluff in South Carolina's low country completed a $100 million expansion. The 20,000-acre resort boosted its room count from 50 to 200 and added the Spa Montage and 35 private, single-family homes ranging from 2,200 to 4,200 square feet. The hotel features six restaurants and lounges, and three pool areas.

Carnival raises early embarkation fees
Carnival Cruise Line raised the early embarkation fees of its Faster to the Fun program from a maximum of $59.95 to $79.95, depending on cruise length. Fees still start at $49.95 for two- and three-day cruises, and offer priority security, check-in and boarding; cabins ready for occupancy at boarding; and priority luggage delivery. Faster to the Fun comes with priority tender boarding and dining times.

Ibiza's Gran Hotel Montesol joins Curio
The Gran Hotel Montesol Ibiza reopened as a member of Hilton's Curio Collection after its renovation. The 1933-built property is a Unesco-declared "asset of cultural interest." The 33-room hotel features the ground-floor Cafe Montesol. The Curio Collection's other European hotel is Germany's Reichshof Hamburg.

New bars, eateries for Carnival Imagination
Carnival Cruise Line will renovate the Carnival Imagination until Sept. 25, adding restaurants and bars that are featured on many other Carnival ships. The new spaces will be Guy's Burger Joint, BlueIguana Cantina, BlueIguana Tequila Bar, RedFrog Rum Bar, Alchemy Bar and the Cherry on Top candy shop.

BA returns to Iran for first time since '07
British Airways last week launched service to Iran after a nine-year hiatus. The flight from London Heathrow to Tehran will operate daily except Sundays.
BA last flew to Iran in 2007. British Midland International stopped flying to Iran in 2012, when that airline was absorbed into BA.

Friends & Colleagues
Howard Karawan will become president and managing director of Atlantis Paradise Island in the Bahamas on Sept. 19, succeeding Paul Burke. Burke recently resigned to pursue new career endeavors in the U.S., according to Atlantis owner Brookfield Asset Management. The appointment marks a return to Atlantis for Karawan, who served as president and chief marketing officer for Kerzner International, the former owner and operator of the resort. Karawan was part of the senior leadership team that developed and managed Atlantis and spearheaded the launch of the One&Only Resorts brand. He later served as COO and chief restructuring officer for Fontainebleau Resorts, where he was responsible for the launch of the Fontainebleau Miami Beach. • • • MSC Cruises has opened an office in Shanghai and appointed Helen Huang as president, Greater China, effective immediately. Huang brings more than 20 years of industry experience to the post. She most recently served as vice president for corporate communications at Costa Asia and prior to that was general manager at Costa China from July 2013 to December 2015. She was previously involved with MSC Cruises when she served as general manager of the Mediterranean Cruise Travel Agency (Shanghai) Co., the joint venture between MSC Cruises and Shanghai International Port (Group) Co., from 2009 until July 2013. • • • Canyon Ranch appointed Kathleen Shea as its chief marketing officer. During Shea's 25-year career, she has served as vice president of sales and marketing at Mandarin Oriental, Four Seasons and Taj Hotels, Resorts and Palaces. • • • OneJet, which arranges regularly scheduled charter flights between midsize Eastern and Midwest markets such as Pittsburgh and Indianapolis, has named Fred Reid to its board of directors. Reid served as president of Delta from 2001 to 2004 and was also the founding CEO of Virgin America. But he resigned before that carrier took flight in 2007 as part of the fallout of an effort waged by U.S. carriers to block Virgin America from receiving regulatory approval. • • • The Hotel Nikko San Francisco appointed Tonita Thomas director of individual business travel sales. Thomas joins the Nikko after serving as associate director of business travel at the Island Hotel in Newport Beach, Calif. Prior to that, she spent eight years at IHG selling the InterContinental Hotels of San Francisco, working her way up to the position of senior corporate sales manager.


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