Travel Business News - North America.

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New York (AirGuideBusiness - Travel Business News North America) May 27, 2012

Accor Hotels Accor Hotels Announces Planet 21 Sustainability Program. Accor Hotels announced Planet 21, a comprehensive sustainable development program that forms a core part of its business strategy and further involves all its hotels, employees and guests. The comprehensive program covers all of the group's environmental, social and community investment actions and placing sustainability at the core of its business strategy worldwide. With Planet 21, Accor is making 21 commitments and the same number of quantified goals for 2015, including employees trained in disease prevention in 95 percent of hotels, 80 percent of properties promoting balanced dishes, 85 percent of hotels using eco-labeled products, a 15 percent reduction in water consumption, and 10 percent decrease in energy use at Accor's owned and leased hotels worldwide. In addition, Accor will actively engage its hotel owners to bring more franchised and managed hotels into the Planet 21 program -- improving their sustainability performance and developing buildings that are constructed and operated in accordance with internationally recognized sustainability best practice. Accor will also share its commitments with suppliers, working with them to develop more sustainable products and services May 21, 2012

Algonquin Hotel New York CityOs Algonquin Hotel Reopens Following Renovation. The Algonquin Hotel, located on ManhattanOs Club Row at 44th between Fifth and Sixth avenues, reopens this week, after being closed for almost six months for its multimillion-dollar renovation. With $15 million invested, the renovations include the propertyOs public spaces and 181 rooms and suites, the Round Table Restaurant and the Blue Bar, which is slated to reopen in June. Rooms feature a customized Opicture windowO headboard, featuring backlit black and white 1920s photographs by Irving Underhill. The completely remodeled bathrooms feature baths in the suites and glass door shower stalls in the rooms, all with Italian floor tiles and back-lit vanity mirrors with LOOccitane product. The Algonquin is part of Autograph Collection, a roster of independent hotels offering exceptional experiences within the Marriott International, Inc. portfolio. May 23, 2012

American Casino American Casino reports increase in Q1 net revenue. American Casino & Entertainment Properties said its net revenue increased to $87.1 million from $86.4 million for the first quarter. American's Stratosphere property in Las Vegas saw its net revenue increase 1.6%, to $38.4 million, while the Aquarius increased its net revenue 3.9%, to $24 million. May 23, 2012

ASTA 2012 election news . Four National At-Large Directors will be elected in the 2012 ASTA elections. Qualified members interested in becoming a national director candidate must send a letter of intent to ASTA Headquarters by 5 p.m. ET June 7. Numerous chapters will be holding elections this year. The chapter officer petitioning began May 25 and closes June 27. Interested candidates should submit a letter of intent to elections@asta.org to receive more information regarding the petitioning period. May 25, 2012

Carlson Rezidor Hotels Carlson Rezidor Launches Park Inn by Radisson Loyalty Offer. Carlson RCarlson Rezidor Launches Park Inn by Radisson Loyalty Offerezidor Hotel Group launched a Park Inn by Radisson O1+1 Stay One, Get OneO offer under which the first 20,000 people to register will be eligible to receive 44,000 loyalty program Gold Points, which can be redeemed enough for a free night at any Park Inn by Radisson hotel. Travelers can register for the offer by visiting www.ParkInnOnePlusOne.com. The first 20,000 people to register and stay at least one night at any Park Inn by Radisson hotel from now through July 22, 2012, will earn 44,000 Gold Points, enough for a one-night stay at any Park Inn by Radisson hotel. Once the 20,000 spots are filled, guests who register for the promotion and complete a one-night stay at any Park Inn by Radisson hotel by July 22, 2012, will earn 15,000 bonus Gold Points, enough for a free night at select hotels. May 22, 2012

Centara Hotel & Convention Centre Khon Kaen CentaCentara Hotel & Convention Centre Khon Kaenra opens hotel and convention center in Khon Kaen. Centara Hotel & Convention Centre Khon Kaen will open at the end of May as the largest venue for meetings and conventions in Khon Kaen Province. The hotel, owned by Khon Kaen Buri Co Ltd. and representing an investment of Baht 1,800 million, has been designed in response to the growing demand of the MICE sector in Northeast Thailand. This is the second property in the Northeast for Centara Hotels & Resorts, ThailandOs leading hotel management company, which also operates the Centara Hotel & Convention Centre Udon Thani. OWe are delighted to announce the opening of this magnificent hotel and convention centre in Khon Kaen, and believe it is perfect in terms of both facilities and location to meet the enormous regional growth in the meetings, conventions and exhibitions sector,O says Thirayuth Chirathivat, chief executive officer of Centara Hotels & Resorts. OIt will complement our existing property in Udon Thani, and we see the two properties as being a key part of our expansion strategy in Thailand.O The hotel, set in extensive gardens in Khon Kaen city centre, has an outdoor swimming pool with dedicated pool bar, a Cenfit Fitness Centre with sauna and steam room, and a Cense by Spa Cenvaree, Centara's new spa brand, offering a complete menu of spa therapies and beauty treatments. Centara Hotels & Resorts is ThailandOs leading operator of hotels, with 37 deluxe and first-class properties covering all the major tourist destinations in the Kingdom. A further 17 resorts in the Maldives, Philippines, Vietnam, Bali Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Mauritius Indian Ocean, brings the present total to 54 properties. Brands and properties within Centara ensure that specific categories such as couples, families, individuals, and meetings and incentives groups will all find a hotel or resort that is appropriate to their needs. Centara operates 25 branches of Spa Cenvaree, one of ThailandOs most luxurious and innovative spa brands, and the companyOs KidsO Club is available at all the family-friendly resorts to ensure that the youngsters and teens are taken care of. Centara Hotels & Resorts also operates two state-of-the-art convention centers in Bangkok, and one in Udon Thani in northeastern Thailand. PHOTO: Chris Bailey (3rd right), Senior Vice President for Sales and Marketing at Centara Hotels & Resorts, together with David R Good (3rd left), Vice President for Operations, and Phakapol Yawaluk (2nd left), General Manager of the new Centara Hotel & Convention Centre Khon Kaen, inspect progress on construction of the hotel. With more than 80 percent of the work completed, the hotel is scheduled for soft opening end of May. Source: centarahotelsresorts.com May 24, 2012

Claremont Hotel Club & Spa, La Quinta Resort & Club, Hilton Hedge Fund Set to Sell Three Top Waldorf Astoria-Affiliated Resorts. As part of a plan to bring four hotels and resorts out of bankruptcy protection, a New York-based hedge fund, Paulson & CHedge Fund Set to Sell Three Top Waldorf Astoria-Affiliated Resortso., reportedly is auctioning off the Arizona Biltmore, located in Scottsdale, Ariz., and the Claremont Hotel Club & Spa in Berkeley, Calif. It also may sell the Grand Wailea in Maui and La Quinta Resort & Club in Palm Springs, Calif. The Arizona Biltmore, the Grand Wailea and La Quinta Resort are all affiliated with HiltonOs Waldorf Astoria collection, so their sale is expected to effectively end any relationship with the brand. A group led by Paulson placed the hotels and three others in bankruptcy last year after seizing them in a foreclosure auction. It took the four properties and a fifth, Doral Golf Resort & Spa in Miami, into Chapter 11 bankruptcy in February 2011 after seizing control of them from Morgan StanleyOs real estate funds. The Trump Hotel Collection already has the bankruptcy courtOs approval to buy the Doral resort for $150 million. Trump expects to take over the property by June. The Paulson group will retain DoralOs 131-acre Great White Course for later commercial or residential development. Paulson reportedly plans to remove Hilton Worldwide Inc. as manager of the Arizona Biltmore, La Quinta Resort and the Grand Wailea, according to documents filed with the bankruptcy court. The Claremont, operated by Pyramid Resort Asset Management LLC, also is being marketed without a management contract. May 24, 2012

Connecticut Connecticut Gov. Malloy Launches New State Tourism Campaign. Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy, joined by Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) Commissioner Catherine Smith, Deputy DECD Commissioner Kip Bergstrom and other state officials, unveiled Connecticut's new branding campaign, entitled OStill Revolutionary.O The campaign, part of a two-year, $27 million initiative to bolster tourism, will include TV, radio, print and digital advertising. The new logo will also appear on the state's social media channels. Connecticut tourism generates about $11.5 billion in spending, $1.15 billion in state and local tax revenue and employs nearly 111,000 workers, according to 2011 statistics. The new ads feature stunning visuals with unique story lines that highlight distinctive and extraordinary destinations around the state -- from the Mystic coastline to the Essex Steam Train, the iconic Gillette Castle and Goodspeed Opera House. May 22, 2012

Contiki Vacations Contiki Vacations Marks 50th Anniversary with Agent Trip. Contiki Vacations commemorated the 50th anniversary of its founding in London as an operator of tours for 18- to 35-year-olds on April 29. Now with a major office in Los Angeles, Contiki offers more than 190 itineraries internationally and...

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