Jennifer Folk loans mortgage Planet Home Lending Servicing 2019-04-11 Radhika Ojha in Headlines, News, Origination The Connecticut-headquartered national lender, Planet Home Lending, has hired Jennifer Folk as SVP of National Operations and operations support. In this role, she is responsible for creating scalable operations to support the growth of the company’s distributed retail sales channel.“Jennifer has the depth of experience and the ability to develop strategies to help us to continue our growth,” said Suzy Lindblom, EVP of National Operations at Planet Home Lending. “Being a lender in today’s mortgage market means you have to consider new ways to reach your goals. Jennifer has a fresh perspective along with the proven capabilities to help us do that.”Before joining Planet Home Lending, Folk was SVP of Strategic Planning at Eagle Home Mortgage. She also spent more than four years in operations at Stearns Lending where she was the business lead for various technology initiatives for retail, wholesale and all joint ventures. Folk started her mortgage operations career in 2002 at Nationwide Lending and has worked at MetLife Home Loans and CMG Financial in operations as well.“Joining the team at Planet Home Lending is an opportunity to work with a growing all-star cast of knowledgeable, committed professionals, including Suzy. I’ve worked with her before and respect her leadership style,” Folk said. “I wanted to be at a company where people enjoy what they do and are passionate about making a constructive difference in the industry. The positive energy here is palpable and it is easy to see why Planet’s potential is limitless. I am excited to have the chance to truly make a difference.”Founded in 2007, Planet Home Lending is a privately held, national residential mortgage lender with multiple business channels uniquely positioned to provide competitive products and services. Planet Home Lending Hires Jennifer Folk April 11, 2019 594 Views Share
Top 10 beaches in AustraliaTripAdvisorWhitehaven Beach Bye bye Bondi … once again, you didn’t make the top 10 in Australia, according to the TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards.Whitehaven Beach in the Whitsundays took the top honours in Australia again, for the fourth year in a row, followed Surfers Paradise and Noosa Main Beach.Baia do Sancho in Brazil was named best beach in the world, ahead of beaches in the Turks and Caicos Islands and Aruba.Top 10 beaches in AustraliaWhitehaven Beach, Whitsunday Island QLDSurfers Paradise Beach, Gold Coast QLDNoosa Main Beach, Noosa QLDManly Beach, Sydney NSWTurquoise Bay Beach, Exmouth WABurleigh Heads Beach, Gold Coast QLDCable Beach, Broome WAMooloolaba Beach, Mooloolaba QLDThe Strand, Townsville, QLDEmily Bay, Norfolk IslandClick to read the full list of winners
Travel Associates Travel Associates has appointed Sally Sylvester as general manager. Sylvester brings a wealth of experience to the role, having worked for Flight Centre Travel Group for more than 18 years.She began her career as a sales consultant, progressing through the ranks to team leader and then employing and developing staff as an area leader.Prior to her appointment as GM for Travel Associates, Sylvester spent eight years in charge of strategic plans and deployment of the Flight Centre Brand Retail operation in New South Wales and the ACT.
agentsEvent & Famil photosWendy Wu Tours Over 60 VIP travel agents, trade partners, suppliers and staff attended Wendy Wu Tours’ latest big bash on Tuesday night in Sydney, to celebrate the launch of WWT’s new website for agents.Agents can now book a group tour online, 24 hours a day, in less than two minutes, find all the latest prices, tour information and campaigns, and manage their ‘Bambu’ points, the company’s agent reward scheme, plus see individual commissions for each tour at the point of sale.“We have listened very carefully to our agents throughout the design process and have customised the portal with functionality specific to the trade,” said Joe Karbo, group chief executive. “As a company, we are in the process of an ambitious global digital transformation overhaul and we’re putting agents at the centre of this change by delivering a site that dramatically speeds up the booking process, provides a seamless experience and allows agents to concentrate on giving a superior service to customers.”At the official launch party Managing Director Andrew Mulholland gave away over $2000 in prizes, in his role as Emcee. “I’m really excited for the opportunities that this website offers agents to grow. Imagine, no more waiting on the phone, and you can even start a booking at your desk and finish it on the train on the way home on your mobile – it’s shortly going to be one of those simple things that you’ll wonder how you ever lived without! No other speciality wholesaler in our market has ever offered the ability to book complicated tours online, the way that Wendy Wu Tours now offers,” Mulholland said.L-R: Stephanie Dyer, WWT, Tracey Thallon, Flight Centre, Sonia Orrego, WWTAri Magoutis, Express Travel Group & Joe Karbo, Global CEO WWTDale Woodhouse, Singapore Airlines & Andrew Mulholland, MD WWTCatherine Allison, Helloworld & Vara Glover, Head of Sales WWTAndrew Mulholland and Joe Karbo
Missed it by that much! During the 1980s, Saskatchewan Tourism took control of its marketing by engaging US actor Don Adams, known for his role as Maxwell Smart or Agent 86 on the TV series Get Smart (1965-1970).Would you believe Adams appeared in a number of commercials for Saskatchewan Tourism in character as Maxwell Smart? The ads were directed by Tom Davidson and the clip below is featured on his YouTube channel.Smart’s clumsy investigative skills, his bulky and conspicuous shoe-phone and popular one-liners all feature.Given that Adams was born in Manhattan, the choice of actor may seem odd — however between 1985 and 1988, Adams was staring in a Canadian TV show comedy called Check it Out which was popular in Canada.In the heart of North America, Saskatchewan is bordered by Canadian provinces of Manitoba and Alberta. To the south it borders the American states of Montana and North Dakota.Unfortunately Adams or Smart doesn’t make it past mostly studio locations in these adverts, due to the time of the year the commercials were filmed, although there is a staged fishing scene, presumably to make reference to the origins of the name from the Plains Indian word, ‘kisiskatchewan’, meaning ‘the river that flows swiftly’ (the area’s major river).You may be hoping for your own cone-of-silence after watching these but they are an interesting snapshot into 1980s tourism marketing. *FlashbackFridayCanadaSaskatchewan Tourism
Trafalgar is getting behind International Women’s Day today (8 March 2019) through its support of the official #BalanceforBetter movement and raising awareness for women’s empowerment in local communities across the world.Trafalgar’s initiatives with women have been successfully enhanced by the framework of its parent foundation, TreadRight, to ensure that female artisans and entrepreneurs are supported long-term, in an ethical and sustainable way.“Companies like Trafalgar have become a proven catalyst for social change, helping to bridge the gender-gap in remote communities,” said Celine Cousteau, TreadRight Ambassador.“According to our ongoing market research, there is a rising trend amongst conscious travellers seeking holidays that incorporate a strong social element, and a correlation between the positive upliftment of women in local communities and responsible travel initiatives,” said Gavin Tollman, Trafalgar Global CEO.“We’re particularly proud of our #JoinTrafalgar initiatives that empower female artisans, and we’ve seen an ongoing trend in conscious travellers actively seeking experiences aimed at uplifting women in local communities. Our unique offering fulfils this.”Trafalgar encourages more women to host and interact with foreign visitors through its carefully curated range of Be My Guest, Dive into Culture and Stays with Stories experiences, helping women regain a stronger foothold in their communities and revive their culture and traditions. Many of these elements of Trafalgar’s guided holidays are completely organised and run by women, who have been encouraged to take full ownership of their skills and knowledge.IMAGE: The Iraq Al-Amir Cooperative Society supports the women of Wadi Seer in Jordan. rAs part of the JoinTrafalgar programme, guests have an opportunity to visit the on-site Handicrafts Village and learn how this TreadRight-supported initiative helps to preserve the heritage of these women, while equipping them with the skills to increase their income and raise their standard of living.
Busabout is celebrating its 21st Birthday with an agent incentive during Busabout’s 21 Day giveaway.Every booking made between 21 March 2019 and 10 April 2019 goes into the draw to win an epic prize every single day. Agents must register and also be a member of Busabout’s Facebook group Busabout Shoutabout. A new prize will be revealed each day on Busabout Shoutabout along with a vintage brochure cover.In addition to this incentive, Busabout is launching three deals for clients.-Save $50 on trips between 5 – 9 days and 6, 9, 12 & 15 stop European Hop-on Hop-off passes-Save $75 on trips between 10 – 15 days-Save $100 on trips 16 days and above, Unlimited Europe and USA Hop-on Hop-offBetween March 21 and April 10 clients and agents can lock in these deals by entering the Promocode: BAB21 at check out.For more details please visitIMAGES AND VIDEO HERE:https://www.dropbox.com/sh/zh1n7aw7gdgd863/AABzLRktGIF8svDViFzt639Ma?dl=0
D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ “They’re playing well now on both sides of the ball and leading their division. They’re front seven is as good as anybody’s and cause a lot of disturbance. It’ll be a true test for us.”“I’m going to have to do extra preparation and make sure that I’m focused and ready every snap out there on the field. We just need to play our own game and focus on the details of our own offense and try to simplify things and do them right,” said Kolb.It was frustrating for Kolb to suffer the toe injury when he did as he’s struggled to grasp the Cardinals offense in his first season with the team.“We still don’t feel like offensively we’ve played an entire game as a complete unit and that’s a big deal of ours.”“We need to get to that point so we can see how good we can be. We feel like we’re getting better in all phases,” said Kolb.It will help that Kolb makes his return at home in the friendly confines of University of Phoenix stadium.“We’ve been on the road now for what seems like a couple months,” said Kolb. What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke PHOENIX – Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kevin Kolb expects to return to the field on Sunday against the Cowboys.“I feel really good. It was good to get back in the action. Obviously, we’ll see tomorrow how it feels after a full day like that, but I have full intention of playing,” said Kolb after going through his first full practice Wednesday since returning form injury.Kolb has missed four games since suffering a toe injury against Baltimore and will need to shake the rust off quickly to face a tough Cowboys defense. Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation Top Stories Comments Share Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away
Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away Warner said the team will have to be able to protect the36-year-old QB, especially as he’s returning from aserious injury, as well as tailor its offense to fitManning’s skill-set. Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation Top Stories Arizona Cardinals fans think Peyton Manning would be agreat fit for their team. However, does the QB feel thesame way about the Cardinals?That could be the determining factor for where the futureHall of Famer plays next season, according to formerCardinal Kurt Warner, and as of now he’s unsure of whereManning will end up.“I believe he wants it to be in Indianapolis, but I’m notsure he or anyone else believes that’s in the cards,”Warner told Arizona Sports 620’s Doug and Wolf. “Thatbecomes the next challenge; if it’s not Indianapolis,you’ve got to find the right fit for Peyton Manning.” Comments Share What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’
Arizona Cardinals tight end Todd Heap has played in just 12 of a possible 24 games with the Arizona Cardinals, including just two this season.The 32-year-old has been sidelined since the team’s Week 2 win over New England with a knee injury, and there’s little doubt Heap would like to get back on the field. Until then, though, the veteran will be subject to all that comes with an injury, including frustration from being unable to help the team. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Comments Share The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Top Stories “If I’m out there I want to be helping the team and not putting myself at risk at the same time,” he said. “Does it help to go out and limp off the field every other play?“I don’t think that’s going to help our team right now.” Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Cardinals defensive lineman Darnell Dockett voiced his displeasure after Monday’s loss, saying his coach “called out some guys in the training room that we need on the field. We need them.”Heap might be one of those guys, and he responded to his teammates comments as a guest of Arizona Sports 620’s Burns and Gambo Tuesday.“I don’t know exactly who those comments are directed at,” Heap said. “If they were directed at me, I hope he would come and talk to me.”No one is saying Dockett was referring to Heap, and there’s little question the tight end would like to get back on the field. However, he said there is a difference between being injured and being in pain, and that “playing through pain is not an issue.”“Now when there’s an involuntary thing that happens that you can’t play through, that’s a different story,” Heap said. “I don’t think the whole training room or locker room deal is an issue with our team right now, I think it’s more of guys just need to get out and do their job.”Heap said besides being able to play through pain, much of the decision to get back on the field is determined by how effective he’d be. As of now, he thinks he’d do more harm than good if he tried to tough it out and play.
Arizona Cardinals rookie safety, former LSU Tiger Tyrann Mathieu, took Kiper’s No. 7 spot in the rankings, thanks, in part, to his consistent play and tackling count, which the evaluator notes is second on the team.The ironic thing about Mathieu’s season isn’t so much his ability to make plays all over the field, it’s that for a guy who was considered a potential boom or bust player, he has been extremely consistent week to week. Every Monday I go back through the games, and he’s as steady a player as the Cardinals have had, and that’s no exaggeration. Only Karlos Dansby has more tackles, and Mathieu’s versatility keeps him on the field for every play.Mathieu was the second rookie safety on Kiper’s list, with New Orleans Saints safety Kenny Vaccaro, a Texas product, ranking No. 4. Another rookie safety out of LSU, Eric Reid of the San Francisco 49ers, also made Kiper’s top 10.Among the other players who ranked higher than Mathieu on the list (besides Alonso and Vaccaro) were: DT Sheldon Richardson (New York Jets; No. 2), DT Star Lotulelei (Carolina Panthers; No. 3), RB Giavani Bernard (Cincinnati Bengals; No. 5) and TE Jordan Reed (Washington Redskins; No. 6). The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires ESPN’s top football talent evaluator, Mel Kiper Jr., released his latest NFL rookie rankings in an Insider piece on Thursday.The parameters used to make his determinations, as he explains in the article, are manifold: they reflect a player’s season-long body of work, positional value comes into play, playing time — and the strength of a particular player’s team — factors in.With that in place, Kiper began his list with Kiko Adams, a Buffalo Bills’ linebacker out of Oregon, who is the NFL’s second-leading tackler. 0 Comments Share Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Top Stories Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact
Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Top Stories Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Comments Share The Arizona Cardinals continued to add to their roster depth Thursday, signing linebacker Adrian Tracy to a future contract for 2014.The 6-foot-2, 248-pound Tracy played in 16 games with the New York Giants in 2012, posting nine tackles and one sack as a defensive end along with eight special teams tackles. He was released following training camp the next year. Tracy originally joined the Giants as a sixth-round selection in the 2010 Draft out of William & Mary, where he started 47 games and recorded 283 tackles, 31 sacks, four forced fumbles and 12 quarterback pressures. The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo
The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Top Stories Each brings something to the table, with perhaps Niklas having the most raw ability. But it is Carlson, at 6-foot-5 and 248 pounds, who presents one of the most intriguing packages, given that he can be useful both as a blocker and a receiver.“We’re asked to do a lot of different things,” he said after a minicamp practice Tuesday. “It’s difficult, it’s challenging. Mentally it’s not easy, but it’s fun. We’ve got a good group of tight ends; I think we can do a lot of different things on the field.”Housler is known as more of a receiver who, entering his fourth season, may be facing a bit of a “make or break” year. Ballard is much like Carlson in that he’s shown potential but struggled with injuries. Niklas, a second-round pick, has struggled to stay healthy throughout the offseason, which may place him behind the veterans, while Hardy and Fells are just hoping to stick.All could find a spot with the team, though it’s not likely each will be on the roster when the season begins. The competition is ongoing, but there’s a reason the team signed Carlson to a two-year, $4 million contract in early March. TEMPE, Ariz. — Bruce Arians’ offense requires a tight end who can both block and catch. Historically that has not been something the Arizona Cardinals have had, though the belief is that has changed.“There’s great competition; that’s an NFL room right now,” Arians said following an OTA practice last week. That room consists of veterans Rob Housler, Jake Ballard and John Carlson, along with younger players Troy Niklas, Darren Fells and Andre Hardy. And so far, he has done nothing to make the team regret that decision.“John has done a really, really good job,” Arians said Tuesday after the team’s first minicamp. “First of all, he’s extremely bright — he picked up the system extremely quick. He plays full speed all the time and has got outstanding hands. His issue in the past has been he’s not an overwhelming blocker, but he’s more than adequate.”Though injuries caused much of his luster to wear off, it was just five years ago when Carlson caught 51 passes for 574 yards and seven touchdowns as a member of the Seattle Seahawks. He also spent time with the Minnesota Vikings, though his career there was limited due to various ailments. But he’s healthy right now, adding that the goal is to continue feeling that way. “We all deal with injuries, I’ve dealt with it in the past,” he said. “I’m not thinking about that. I’m thinking about doing what I can to prepare my body physically right now to mentally understand this offense and do the things I need to do on the field.”His ability to do so could go a long way toward determining whom Arians turns to at the position. As of now there is no clear-cut starter, meaning the job is very much up for grabs. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Comments Share Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires “We’ve got six guys in the position group,” Carlson said when asked if it’s a friendly competition. “Every team I’ve been on has been, it’s always competitive — we all want a job, obviously, who doesn’t? But at the same time, we’re supporting and doing everything we can to be as good as we can be.” – / 11 Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact
Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo If nothing else, the Cardinals would like to finish their home slate with a victory. In a season that has not gone the way anyone wanted, one final home win would at least let some people have a nice thing to remember this team for.“We’re looking to go out and play some dominant football on all three phases and give our fans something to look forward for the 2017 season.”Injury updateThe final injury report of the week is here, and the only bad news for the Cardinals is not surprising as tackle D.J. Humphries will not play Sunday due to a concussion suffered last week in Miami. Arians said the second-year pro is still in the concussion protocol, and has yet to pass any of the baseline tests.While Humphries is out, it appears safety Tyrann Mathieu will make his return. He was a full participant in Friday’s practice, and Arians said, “he looks really good.”Scooby’s debutFor the first time as an NFL, player, Scooby Wright will be active and able to play.Signed by the Cardinals on Tuesday, the former University of Arizona star will be active Sunday, Arians said, and have a role on special teams.“He can run down and cover kickoffs and he’s got some fire in his belly,” Arians said of what he saw from the linebacker over the last few days of practice. A seventh-round draft pick of the Cleveland Browns, Wright was on the 53-man roster for the team’s first two games but was not active for either, and every week since then he has been on their practice squad.The news that he will get to suit up and play in any capacity Sunday is welcome news.“It’ll be exciting,” he said. “I’m just excited to go out there and play ball again, to be honest.”Wright, who earlier in the week said being with the Cardinals was “a good opportunity,” said his parents will be in town from California, and many of his family and friends from around the Valley will be on hand to watch.For him, it will be the culmination of what has been a pretty hectic week.“Honestly, just been trying to catch my breath,” he said. “Got a phone call to move across the country; been here, had to pack. I’m enjoying it, though. It’s a good process, I’m happy to be here. Excited for the opportunity.”Final thought on Floyd?On Monday, it was learned Michael Floyd had been arrested on DUI charges. By Wednesday, the Cardinals had released him, though Arians had little (or nothing) to say on the matter. TEMPE, Ariz. — The Cardinals held their final day of practice Friday as they prepared for their last home game of the season, which is Sunday against the New Orleans Saints.Head coach Bruce Arians said this game is a good opportunity for some of the team’s younger players, “because they’re going to get a lot of playing time out of necessity.”That’s where the Cardinals, at 5-7-1, are at right now. Comments Share FILE – In this Oct. 30, 2016, file photo, Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians watches the action in the first half of an NFL football game against the Carolina Panthers in Charlotte, N.C. Halfway through their season, the Cardinals are one of the league’s biggest disappointments. (AP Photo/Bob Leverone, File) Top Stories Thursday afternoon, Floyd was claimed off waivers by the New England Patriots, which would seem like a great spot for the receiver to land. Talented yet inconsistent, he is now with a team that has a great offense and a legitimate shot to win the Super Bowl.So, how does the coach think his former player will do with the Pats?“I have no clue,” Arians said, before pausing. “I hope he does well.”Follow Adam Green on Twitter Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact They are a beat-up team, one that has suffered a good number of injuries that would likely be fretted over even more had they been positioned to make a playoff run. That’s not the case, however, so in some ways the number of key players lost at this point in some ways serves as an appropriate way to cap off a disappointing season.Very little seemed to go right, and their record — and active roster — bears that out.On the offensive line, which is set to have a couple of first-time starters, Arians said he’s as comfortable with the group as possible.“Not being able to put them in pads and practices, like we should,” he said. “As comfortable as you can be.”With all that seems to be working against them, however, Arians said he expects a solid game from his team, which on the surface does not seem to have much more than pride left to play for. That, however, should be enough, and nothing has happened this week to make him think that his guys have thrown in the towel. It’s never happened with past teams he has coached, either.“I’ve never been on a group of guys that packed it in,” Arians said. “Everybody had pride and played to win.”
Go back to the e-newsletter >Corinthia Hotel Budapest has appointed Eszter Kálmán as the hotel’s dedicated Tea Sommelier, becoming the first and only hotel in the city to offer this expertise. Eszter joins Corinthia Budapest following a career with The East India Company and as junior tea master in London hotels.“When guests enter the bar, I often already know what kind of tea would suit them best,” says Eszter. Guests can find Eszter in the hotel’s Le Bar, which is open daily from 6.30pm and features a menu of tea specialities from Eilles Tea House.Eszter launched her career as a barista with a degree in hospitality and tourism. “Tea is not only my profession, but indeed my life’s passion – and the positive health benefits have been incredible. Tea belongs to the superfood category: it is organic; it detoxes the body and restores a healthy balance; and it can be either energising or relaxing. I start every day with a Japanese matcha tea, and I haven’t had any health issues in years. Tea is the second most popular drink in the world after water, and my goal in life is to familiarise more Hungarians with it. After all, there’s a tea for everyone out there,” said Eszter Kálmán.Go back to the e-newsletter >
Go back to the e-newsletter > Go back to the e-newsletter >Tourists to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia’s capital city can visit its various tourists site the cashless way with the just-launched KL PASS.The KL PASS, produced and managed by Meridian Tourist Access Sdn Bhd, provides seamless access to the attractions in and around Kuala Lumpur, and also includes various benefits, including:Skipping queues at tourist sites with Fast Track lanesEnabling tourists to get around the city on the KL Hop-On Hop-Off tour bus (with 22 stops around the city and running commentary in different languages)Discounts/offers at dining and retail outlets in various shopping mallsComplimentary 141-page, full-colour pocket-sized guidebook with useful information on participating tourist attractions and establishments and how to get to themThe KL PASS comes in validities of one, three and six days for both adults and children. It is available for purchase online at www.klpass.com, travel agents and various sales outlets in the city and at the KL International Airport.
Go back to the e-newsletterLos Angeles Tourism & Convention Board (LA Tourism) this week launched LA Insider, a new online training tool for travel trade professionals. The mobile- and tablet-friendly program is the first of its kind for LA Tourism. It has been designed to help Australian travel trade better sell the city and stay up-to-date with its latest offerings.Demand for a bespoke online portal of information and selling tools for the travel trade is strong and growing, as global demand to visit Los Angeles continues its rapid upward trajectory. A record 48.3 million tourists visited LA in 2017 (411,000 visitors from Australia), a figure that is expected to reach 50 million by 2020.“We’re proud to launch such an advanced training program, one that will help our clients discover LA like an insider and sell LA like an expert,” said Craig Gibbons, regional director – Australia & New Zealand, LA Tourism. “Los Angeles’ welcoming spirit, celebration of diversity and perfect weather are bringing visitors in greater numbers. New restaurants, attractions and hotels are opening up quickly to meet demand and it can be difficult to stay on top of all the new developments – LA Insider aims to provide the travel trade with a one-stop-shop platform for everything they need.”LA Insider, developed by TravPRO, which also launched Visit California’s STAR program, will provide easy access to LA Tourism’s marketing assets, sales collateral such as fact sheets, maps, videos and even neighbourhood tours in virtual reality. The program also provides information on the gateway to North America, Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and updates on the airport’s multi-billion-dollar modernisation program with multimedia assets added as they become available.Participants who complete the LA Insider training will receive a certificate, access to discounts and specials from LA members, the opportunity to participate in FAMs and be entered to win a trip to one of LA’s award shows.The first 20 agents (in Australia only) who complete the program by 7 May will also receive season passes to Palace Cinemas that can be used to attend the American Essentials Film Festival in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra sponsored by Discover Los Angeles. Additionally, the first 100 travel agents from across both Australia and New Zealand who complete the LA Insider program by 31 May will receive a $25 gift card from Westfield or EFTPOS.“We are extremely grateful for the ongoing support we receive from our industry partners,” said Ernest Wooden Jr, president and CEO of LA Tourism. “The launch of LA Insider speaks to our commitment to travel trade professionals by providing them with helpful tools they can use on a daily basis as well as recognition for their expertise.”LA Insider will be rolled out in Spanish, French, German, Korean and Japanese over the coming months with more languages to follow. The market-specific modules will feature videos of expats describing what it is they love about Los Angeles and tips to make the most of a visit. LA Tourism successfully launched a China-specific online training program, LA Angels Academy, in October 2015, with over 5,600 registered users and 1.45 million page views.Go back to the e-newsletter
Go back to the enewsletterFollowing its acquisition of Emporium Hotel in January, award-winning Ovolo Hotel Group is continuing to stamp its mark on Queensland’s capital, this month revealing a major multi-million-dollar evolution of the iconic property which will see it become the flagship Queensland hotel for the group.Ovolo The Valley will debut in November, however the Ovolo Hotel Group is already accepting bookings online for stays effective immediately. The project by acclaimed global architecture firm Woods Bagot, the award-winning designers behind the revitalisation of Brisbane’s Howard Smith Wharves and The Ivy in Sydney, will take Emporium into the new era with a hotel theme inspired by the eclectic culture and iconic history of Fortitude Valley. Ovolo The Valley draws guests into a whimsical oasis of colour, art and surprising hints of quirk, curated throughout its 103 rooms.CEO and Chairman of the Ovolo Group, Girish Jhunjhnuwala says Ovolo has invested approximately $55 million in adding a niche boutique designer hotel to Brisbane’s booming tourism and hospitality market.“There are many newcomers to the Brisbane hotel market, but Ovolo’s biggest point of difference is our exceptional customer service and design. We strive to exceed expectations and our rankings and customer feedback says it all. We are confident Ovolo The Valley will be a market leader for Brisbane in the near future,” Jhunjhnuwala said.“Our brief to Woods Bagot was that each of our hotels must have their own unique personality and style, inspired by local surrounds, culture, heritage and Ovolo’s playful, forward-thinking spirit, and they’ve delivered exactly that with The Valley.“There is an element of fantasy, escapism and play in The Valley. We’re positioning it as the perfect contemporary oasis to escape our busy urban lives,” said Jhunjhnuwala.Woods Bagot’s Principal and Hotel Sector Leader (Australia), Bronwyn McColl, says the design of Ovolo The Valley celebrates Fortitude Valley’s eclectic mix: the rich colours of the streets and laneways, and its social and cultural diversity. At the same time, with rooms inspired by nature for a whimsical luxe experience, it provides an unexpected, private oasis for guests.“With an eccentric mix of art, fashion, style and a whole lot of fabulous, we’ve created a new personality in Brisbane’s hotel market. We started by exploring the spaces behind The Valley’s indiscernible facades and the spaces in between, and translated them into playful, yet sophisticated, experiences that take the Ovolo guest by surprise, including the most incredible rock star suites in honour of the late David Bowie, with 1970s-inspired velvet lounges and a gold bar, for those who dare!” said McColl.The interior design for the new hotel’s 103 rooms focus on creating a whimsical oasis for guests, replete with playful and colourful elements and commissioned art pieces including custom wallpaper and eccentric furniture and illustrations.Ovolo’s effortless living ethos is no stranger at The Valley, with 24-hour room service, large flatscreen televisions, Google Chromecast, additional wall plugs, phone chargers in rooms and Amazon’s Alexa cloud-based voice service, able to assist guests with just about every command.A rooftop swimming pool, gym, sauna, meeting rooms and Ovolo’s signature standard inclusions – free breakfast, free Wi-Fi, free in-room mini-bar, free laundry and free happy hour drinks daily – make The Valley a distinguished luxury hotel experience.Food and drink is a big part of the Ovolo Hotel Group concept, with award-winning restaurants at its other Australian properties including Alibi at Ovolo Woolloomooloo (Sydney) fronted by restauranteur Matthew Kenney; Monster Kitchen & Bar at Ovolo Nishi (Canberra); and Salon De Co at Ovolo Inchcolm (Brisbane). The group recently opened Mister Percy at Ovolo 1888 (Sydney), a Mediterranean-style wine bar fronted by renowned chef Justin North.Rates start from $300 per night.For more information and to book, see: www.ovolohotels.com.au/ovolothevalleyGo back to the enewsletter
A growing Chinese airline is to bolster its flight scheduling functions through partnership with a leading global distribution systems (GDS) provider. Shenzhen Airlines has contracted with Sabre Airline Solutions via the Sabre AirFlite Planning and Scheduling suite of solutions to enable the airline to benefit from a system that looks to provide the best combination of flights for customer needs and to allow the rapid deployment of aircraft to new routes.Shenzhen is one of China’s largest private carriers, having developed a fleet of 50 aircraft since the Chinese aviation market opened up to private ownership in 2004. Sabre Airline Solutions’ regional vice president-Asia/Pacific said: “The close proximity of Shenzhen to Hong Kong gives Shenzhen Airlines a great opportunity to provide a competitive alternative for mainland Chinese passengers travelling to and from Hong Kong or taking connecting flights through Hong Kong.”Meanwhile, Dr. Peter Liu, chief information officer of Shenzen Airlines, added: “Shenzhen Airlines has a clearly defined growth path for the next nine years. One of the key enablers of this growth involves the adoption of technology and industry best practices in all parts of the airline.”ReturnOne wayMulti-cityFromAdd nearby airports ToAdd nearby airportsDepart14/08/2019Return21/08/2019Cabin Class & Travellers1 adult, EconomyDirect flights onlySearch flights Map RelatedSilverjet spreads fares on SabreSilverjet has announced a new agreement that will see its airfares launched onto further global distribution systems.VRG seeks Sabre Solutions connectivityBrazilian airline VRG has taken a further step toward integrating itself with fellow international airlines.Saudi Arabian Airlines secures Sabre packageFour separate deals have been signed between Saudi Arabian Airlines and Sabre Airline Solutions.
Cheap flights carrier Jet2.com will launch new flights to Dubrovnik, Split, Reus and Prague from Manchester next summer.The airline will serve a total of nine new destinations next year, making it the biggest airline in operation at Manchester with a total of 28 routes.It will also become the only carrier to offer flights to Reus on the Costa Dorada from the north-west airport.Jet2.com boss Philip Meeson explained that the airline is “bucking the trend” by introducing new services.”Next summer will see us fly up to 140,000 extra passengers to fantastic destinations across Europe and northern Africa, ensuring that people living in and around the region have an unprecedented choice of holiday destination,” he commented.Mr Meeson went on to say that hundreds of new jobs will be created at Manchester as a result of the airline’s expansion.The 140,000 seats is a 20 percent increase in capacity on this year, making a total of one million available every year from Manchester.Elsewhere, Jet2.com will introduce flights to Faro and Dubrovnik from Edinburgh on May 2nd.ReturnOne wayMulti-cityFromAdd nearby airports ToAdd nearby airportsDepart14/08/2019Return21/08/2019Cabin Class & Travellers1 adult, EconomyDirect flights onlySearch flights Map RelatedMore flights to Tel Aviv will be launched by Jet2.comMore flights to Tel Aviv will be launched by Jet2.comJet2.com to launch flights to Dubrovnik from EdinburghJet2.com to launch flights to Dubrovnik from EdinburghJet2.com reveals summer 2011 schedule from ManchesterJet2.com reveals summer 2011 schedule from Manchester