Gunmen kill 3 soldiers child in south Philippines

first_img More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Top Stories The difference between men and women when it comes to pain Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center Sponsored Stories Comments   Share   5 things to look for when selecting an ophthalmologist (Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Three soldiers were killed and 10 others were wounded, two seriously, along with three passing motorists, he said.Other gunmen believed to be related to the attackers in the initial attack later fired at two nearby army detachments. A child was killed by sniper fire from the gunmen near one of the detachments, said Lucero, adding that troops were hunting down the attackers.The gunmen were believed to be gangsters unleashed by politicians who wanted to harass the military for backing government and police efforts to prevent fraud in next year’s congressional and local elections by cleaning up a list of voters long notorious for including non-existent, or “ghost,” voters. The fraudulent practice has allowed politicians to ensure their hold on power for years, Lucero said.The anti-elections fraud campaign in Marawi led to the recent exclusion of 24,000 suspicious names on the voters’ list, angering corrupt politicians, he said. Since then, army troops have come under fire at least four times from unknown gunmen.Marawi, about 810 kilometers (505 miles) southeast of Manila, lies in a volatile region with a long presence of Muslim guerrillas and other armed groups and a recent history of electoral fraud and violence. Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates MANILA, Philippines (AP) – Heavily armed men opened fire on an army patrol near a sprawling university in the southern Philippines and attacked two nearby military outposts, killing three soldiers and a child in what appeared to be coordinated assaults, military officials said Thursday.About a dozen soldiers were traveling on a truck near Mindanao State University in predominantly Muslim Marawi city late Wednesday when around 15 gunmen raked the patrolling troops with rifle fire. The soldiers returned fire and wounded several of the attackers, who fled after a 30-minute gunbattle, army Col. Daniel Lucero said.last_img read more

Uruguay returns independence hero to mausoleum

first_img 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center “It’s an honor to be part of this procession,” said Juan Carlos Cano, 58, a welder. “Artigas transcends Uruguay. He’s a Latin American leader and (we), and the metallurgical workers, share his belief of a unified Latin America.Artigas was born to a wealthy family and rose to become a leader of Uruguay’s 19th century fight for independence from Spain and Portugal. History books describe Artigas as a man happy to do farm labor with the Gauchos, or the cowboys of the Uruguayan and Argentine Pampas flatlands.Although Artigas fought to free Montevideo and Buenos Aires from the European empires, his attempt to unite the region’s provinces failed and he was forced to spend his last days in Paraguay, where he died.When the procession of more than 1,000 people reached the square, the urn was returned to a marble and cement mausoleum inaugurated in 1977 during the country’s military dictatorship.The mausoleum stirred controversy in 2009, when former President Tabare Vazquez announced he would move Artigas’ remains from the “cold marble” to a building in the plaza where they could be put on public display.Congress voted in favor of the plan, but the project stalled after more than a hundred people rode horses to Independence Square to protest. Vazquez then said Artigas’ remains would be taken away for restoration. Early signs of cataracts in your parents and how to help New Year’s resolution: don’t spend another year in a kitchen you don’t like Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Associated PressMONTEVIDEO, Uruguay (AP) – The remains of Uruguayan independence hero Jose Artigas were returned to a mausoleum in Montevideo’s main square Friday, a year after they were removed to be restored.The urn was hauled back from Congress to the mausoleum on an artillery caisson pulled slowly by six horses in a solemn ceremony led by President Jose Mujica. The gun carriage was guarded by soldiers from a regiment that Artigas belonged to in his youth and dozens of unionists clad in red. Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Sponsored Stories 0 Comments   Share   (Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Top Stories last_img read more

2 convicted of alQaida membership in Germany

first_img 0 Comments   Share   Top Stories Sponsored Stories Check your body, save your life BERLIN (AP) – A German and an Austrian have been convicted of membership in al-Qaida and sentenced to several years in prison.Yusuf Ocak, 27, from Luebeck, Germany, was also convicted of being a founding member of the German Taliban Mujahideen and was sentenced to 9 years in prison. Maqsood Lodin, 23, an Austrian of Afghan background, was sentenced to 6 years 9 months.Both can appeal.The pair met in July 2010 in Pakistan’s Waziristan region and were assigned by al-Qaida to collect money and recruit members for the terrorist group in Europe upon returning there in the spring of 2011. Ocak also posted a threat video on the internet in 2009. Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Get a lawn your neighbor will be jealous ofcenter_img Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Ocak was arrested in Vienna and Lodin in Berlin in 2011. Neither defendant made statements during the trial.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Clean energy: Why it matters for Arizonalast_img read more

HRW Chinese police torture suspects despite legal reforms

first_imgBEIJING (AP) — Police abuse of criminal suspects to extract confessions in China is a serious problem despite measures to reform the legal system such as moves to exclude evidence obtained through torture, Human Rights Watch said in a report Wednesday.The report found that police have found ways around the rules, in a legal system that still relies heavily on confessions to produce convictions in nearly every case, partly because of often inadequate manpower to properly investigate crimes. Top Stories Patients with chronic pain give advice New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center Comments   Share   Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement President Xi Jinping has made a priority of reducing wrongful convictions and reforming the justice system to restore public confidence in the ruling Communist Party, but has declined to consider loosening the party’s control over the judiciary.A high-profile result of the legal reform campaign so far was the posthumous exoneration in December of a teenager from Inner Mongolia who was convicted of rape and murder and executed 18 years ago. The police officer who oversaw the original case has been charged with using torture to coerce a confession.Measures put into place in 2009 and 2012 — before Xi became president — require interrogations to be videotaped and ban the use of evidence directly obtained through torture. Those are positive steps, but not enough, Human Rights Watch said.“They are being grafted onto a criminal justice system that still affords the police enormous power over the judiciary and offers police numerous opportunities to abuse suspects,” the group said.Some officers get around the rules by torturing detainees outside of official detention facilities, using methods that leave no visible injuries and taping confessions later, the report said.center_img Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility China’s Public Security Minister Guo Shengkun was quoted as saying in June 2013 that coerced confessions had dropped 87 percent in 2012 compared to the year earlier. Human Rights Watch said it did not have enough access to confirm or refute that figure.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Quick workouts for men At the same time, police operate the detention centers, suspects have no right to have a lawyer present during interrogations and judges rarely question police conduct and often ignore clear evidence of mistreatment, the report said.“The confession is still highly valued, a confession is obtained in almost every case, there is nothing that really holds a police officer accountable for torture or coercion,” said Maya Wang, Hong Kong-based Asia researcher at Human Rights Watch.In interviews for the Human Rights Watch report, former detainees, mostly suspected of theft, selling drugs or robbery, described abuse during police interrogations, including sleep deprivation, being beaten with batons and being hung up by the wrists.The Ministry of Public Security didn’t immediately respond to a faxed request for comment.Human Rights Watch spoke to 18 former detainees as well as family members, lawyers, a former judge and a former police officer. It also looked at 432 court verdicts from across China that addressed claims of torture by detainees among 158,000 verdicts published online from the first four months of 2014. The defendants were convicted in all 432 cases, even in the 23 cases in which judges excluded confessions due to concerns over police torture. Sponsored Stories last_img read more

Qantas wants direct flights to Papua New Guinea

first_img<a href=”” target=”_blank”><img src=”;cb=INSERT_RANDOM_NUMBER_HERE&amp;n=a5c63036″ border=”0″ alt=””></a> Qantas wants to operate direct services to Papua New Guinea from Cairns, and has applied for air rights to fly 12 weekly services with its Bombardier aircraft.The government Friday revealed that it had received an application from Qantas requesting the rights for 888 seats per week between Cairns and Port Moresby.“Qantas plans to commence services between Australia and Papua New Guinea (PNG) from July 2010, or as soon as all necessary approvals have been received,” said Qantas in its submission.“Twelve weekly return services will be operated between Cairns and Port Moresby using QantasLink Bombardier Dash 8-Q400 aircraft configured with 74 seats.”Qantas says if it’s given the green light it will have its services in place before year’s end.Interestingly the carrier has asked for the rights to be operated by regional operator QantasLink, and will be the subsidiary carrier’s first international service. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: W.Xlast_img read more

The Spa at Four Seasons Hotel Sydney Takes Top Honours at 2010

first_imgThe Spa at Four Seasons Hotel Sydney has taken out top honours at the 2010 Australian Hotels Association (NSW) Awards for Excellence held last night at the Hilton Hotel.The Spa was named the winner in the category of Health Club and Spa Facilities of the Year, ahead of four other prestigious Sydney hotel spas.Four Seasons Hotel Sydney Spa Manager Lucy Kennington said: “This award is testament to our highly skilled spa therapists who consistently deliver the most memorable treatments, so it’s wonderful to be recognised in front of our industry colleagues with this prestigious award.”The Spa at Four Seasons offers an intimate, enchanting escape. The menu of treatments uses a range of Sodashi and Elemis products which help foster the wellness that comes from within. Expert therapists combine techniques from Australia and around the world to provide the ualtimate in pampering and rejuvenation, in an atmosphere of comfort and discretion.Four Seasons Hotel Sydney is conveniently located in The Rocks at 199 George Street, Sydney. Source = Four Seasons Hotel Sydney <a href=”” target=”_blank”><img src=”;cb=INSERT_RANDOM_NUMBER_HERE&amp;n=a5c63036″ border=”0″ alt=””></a>last_img read more

Tourism to Aussie landmarks waning

first_imgSource = e-Travel Blackboard: S.P Recent statistics have revealed that visitor numbers to two of Australia’s most iconic landmarks have declined in the past 12 months. Parks Australia has revealed statistics that indicate visitor numbers to Uluru and Kakadu have decreased by about nine per cent in 2011, the ABC reported. The popular tourist attraction Uluru was visited by around 273,000 people and about 160,000 travelled to Kakadu. The parks are two of the most famous wilderness regions in the world and the Northern Territory Government has poured millions into preserving and promoting them. Kakadu National Park is a World Heritage listed area that has been listed for its cultural and natural heritage and Kakadu is the largest terrestrial national park in Australia Kakadu Tourism Operator Genda Campbell said he had never experienced business so difficult in the past.”There was probably an 80 per cent drop in inquiries on the internet on our website and on the phone through agents both in the Territory and interstate as well,” Mr Campbell said. Mr Campbell attributed the downturn in visitors to the strong Australian dollar and economic problems overseas.”When people have got money, they travel, when they don’t, they don’t,” he added. Tourism Central Australia’s Peter Solly is confident the situation for the tourist attractions will change for the better.”This year’s going to be a difficult year, things don’t change overnight but there are some good positive signs around,” Mr Solly said. Mr Solly added that visitor numbers to destinations throughout Australia have been decreasing and that Uluru and Kakadu are not the only regions experiencing a tough time.last_img read more

South African secures ties with China

first_imgSource = e-Travel Blackboard: S.P South African Airways launches new non-stop Johannesburg – beijing flights In an effort to strengthen its ties with China, South African Airways has this week launched non-stop flights to Beijing.According to the airline the 15 hour flight, operated by an Airbus A340-600 would make three round trips a week on the Johannesburg – Beijing route, AFP reported.South African Airways Chief Siza Mzimela said the new service will increase trade and tourism within the 15-nation Southern African Development Community.Mr Mzimela said the new route will also boost relationships between the BRICS nations of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.“We believe the route will play a strategic role in the growing economic relationships and dependencies between the continents,” Mr Mzimela said.“Commercially, SAA is able to deliver seamless travel from Sao Paolo via Johannesburg to Beijing, servicing all three continents.”Additionally, the airline last month strengthened its position into Central Africa by introducing flights into Pointe Noire in the Democratic Republic of Congo.The airline will operate two flights a week to Pointe Noire with a narrow body airbus A319, which offers a total of 120 seats.“SAA is committed to delivering its strategic objectives for the state, including objectives for the state including facilitating trade and economic development in an environmentally and socially responsible manner,” Mr Mzimela said.last_img read more

US expecting strong bookings from China

first_imgTravel trade confident in continued sales. Increasingly strong bookings from China to the United States have been forecast through the third quarter of 2013, according to a new study.For the first quarter of the year 81 percent of tour operators surveyed projected an increase in bookings from China to the US, according to the Travel Market Insights Travel Trade Barometer.Second quarter estimates were even higher, with 87 percent of travel trade respondents predicting a rise in bookings and not one trade member projecting a decrease, compared with 2012.In the third quarter 41 percent of respondents projected higher bookings, while only 9 percent forecast results would be the same as last year.During both the second and third quarter, Europe was selected as the most competitive destination.Direct air services to desired destinations in the US seemed to be the overwhelming driving factor for Chinese visitor bookings, while natural disasters and language barriers were the greatest deterrents.Source = e-Travel Blackboard: P.T.last_img read more

Tourism Australias Best Job winners arrive

first_imgThe winners of Tourism Australia’s ‘Best Jobs in the World’ began arriving in Australia this week.The competition managed to attract 330,000 applicants from 196 countries after it launched in March of this year.French online marketer Elisa Detrez starts her position as Queensland’s Park Ranger this week, while Irish entrepreneur Allan Dixon begins his job as the Northern Territory’s Outback Adventurer.English costume designer Richard Keam will become Western Australia’s Taste Master at the end of August, followed in September by Brazilian Roberto Seba as Victoria’s Lifestyle Photographer.Greg Snell and Andrew Smith; South Australia’s Wildlife Caretaker and New South Wales’ Chief Funster respectively, are due to start their new jobs in December 2013.American singer-songwriter Cameron Ernst will also become Virgin Australia’s High Flyer this month.“This has been an extraordinary competition, and these are no ordinary jobs… together, they capture the broad appeal of our country and demonstrate why there really is nothing like Australia,” Tourism Australia managing director Andrew McEvoy said.“During this time they’ll come face to face with our magnificent landscapes and scenery, unique nature and wildlife, cosmopolitan cities, amazing food and wine, and a lifestyle the envy of the world – and they’ll be getting paid for it.”Each of the ‘Best Job’ winners has been provided a six month employment contract in Australia.Source = ETB News: P.T. Six-month employment experiences for international winners. last_img read more

AccorHotels acquires Fairmont Raffles and Swissôtel

first_imgFollowing the approval of shareholders at the General Shareholders Meeting on July 12, 2016, AccorHotels Group officially announces the acquisition of FRHI Hotels & Resorts (FRHI) and its three prestigious luxury hotel brands: Fairmont, Raffles and Swissôtel.This addition of three remarkable brands instantly positions AccorHotels as a leading player in the global luxury hotel market, increases long term growth potential and profitability, and significantly expands the company’s footprint in North America, the world’s largest and most influential consumer market.“Today is a great day for our Group. The acquisition of these three emblematic luxury hotel brands is a historical milestone for AccorHotels. It will open up amazing growth prospects, lift our international presence to unprecedented heights, and build value over the long term,” says Sébastien Bazin, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of AccorHotels.Joining AccorHotels’ global network is a portfolio of globally admired brands, which includes management of many of the world’s most iconic and historic hotels located in key strategic cities around the world, including: The Savoy in London, Raffles Singapore, Fairmont San Francisco, New York’s The Plaza, Fairmont Le Château Frontenac in Quebec City, and Le Royal Monceau Raffles Paris.Combining FRHI’s proven track record and deep expertise in operating and marketing luxury hotels, with AccorHotels robust global operating platform, extensive loyalty base and industry leading digital capabilities, means the Group is uniquely positioned to deliver the most profitable returns and best growth potential across all market segments.“We remain committed to providing guests with unparalleled service, while also keeping the ambition to deliver exceptional return on investment for our shareholders and hotel owners,” added Bazin.“By leveraging the operational synergies between FRHI and AccorHotels, we are well-positioned to accelerate the growth of our luxury brands and offer guests even more exciting hotel choices and destinations to explore.”Chris Cahill appointed as the Group’s CEO Luxury BrandsIn support of the acquisition, and as part of AccorHotels’ larger strategy to strengthen its luxury and upscale business, the company has appointed Chris Cahill as the Group’s Chief Executive Officer, Luxury Brands.In this newly created role, Chris, who will also become a member of AccorHotels’ Executive Committee, will lead the FRHI integration process and be responsible for the strategy and global operations of AccorHotels Luxury Brands. This new structure will include Raffles, Fairmont, Sofitel Legend, So Sofitel, Sofitel, MGallery by Sofitel, Pullman and Swissôtel.Chris is an experienced hotelier who has led several successful integrations, is familiar with multi-brand management and brings an extensive background in luxury operations, sales and marketing. With more than 30 years of hospitality industry experience, including 19 years working with FRHI and its predecessor companies, Chris is ideally positioned to lead the integration of the Fairmont, Raffles and Swissôtel brands into the AccorHotels portfolio, and will ensure AccorHotels’ luxury brands grow and prosper. He most recently served as Executive Vice President Global Operations at Las Vegas Sands Corp.Closing DetailsFollowing the approval of shareholders at the General Shareholders Meeting on July 12, 2016, the transaction with Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) and Kingdom Holding Company (KHC) of Saudi Arabia provided $840 million (€768 million) cash payment and the issuance of 46.7 million AccorHotels shares in consideration for the contributed FRHI shares. The transaction gives QIA and KHC respective stakes of 10.4% and 5.8% in Accor’s share capital. Ali Bouzarif and Aziz Aluthman Fakhroo from QIA and Sarmad Zok from KHC will now join AccorHotels’ Board of Directors.AccorHotels plans to generate approximately €65 million in revenue and cost synergies thanks to the combination of brands, the maximization of hotel earnings, the increased efficiency of marketing, sales and distribution channel initiatives, and the optimization of support costs. Significant enhancements will also be made in terms of customer data, thanks to the integration of FRHI’s customer base that includes three million loyalty members, of which 75 percent are in North America.The vast majority of Fairmont, Raffles and Swissôtel’s 154 hotels and resorts (of which 40 are under development) and 56,000 rooms spanning 34 countries and five continents are operated under long-term management contracts, with an average term of nearly 30 years; six hotels are leased and one hotel is owned. The Fairmont, Raffles and Swissôtel brands employ more than 45,000 colleagues worldwide. AccorHotelsSource = AccorHotelslast_img read more

Best Western unveils beachfront hotel in sunkissed Okinawa

first_imgBest Western® Hotels & Resorts has opened an idyllic beachfront property in Japan that combines all the key elements of a tropical seaside vacation.Located on the main island of Okinawa, where the warm, shallow waters of Nago Bay lap gently against the golden shore, Best Western Okinawa Kouki Beach creates the perfect setting for guests seeking sun, sea and sand.Set in a modern 10-story building – painted white and positioned just meters from the shoreline – Best Western Okinawa Kouki Beach features a collection of light, bright rooms with balconies that offer spectacular views across Nago Bay’s shimmering aquamarine seas, as far as Minna Island and the Motobu Peninsula.Guests have a choice of room categories, ranging from the 30m² Standard Rooms to the 60m² Deluxe Rooms, all of which come equipped with fast and free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs with international satellite channels, ceiling fans and mini-bars. The hotel is also ideal for families, with the larger rooms sleeping up to six guests and featuring private cooking facilities.The most spectacular dining options; however, can be found at the hotel’s beachfront restaurant, Kouki. From sumptuous buffet breakfasts overlooking Nago Bay to the most romantic evening dinners, served on the sandy shore in front of the hotel, this is the perfect place to enjoy delectable Japanese cuisine and international favorites. Other facilities at the hotel include a laundry, massage services and a business center, and guests are offered Best Western’s legendary service in both Japanese and English languages.During the day, a selection of water sports is available on Nago Bay, or alternatively guests can explore the many visitor attractions on this popular tourist island, such as Churaumi Aquarium, the remains of Nakijin Castle, Busena Marine Park or Nago Pineapple Park. And by night they can unwind with a cooling cocktail while watching the sunset over the ocean from the hotel – the perfect way to end a fulfilling day.“Okinawa has always been a tourism hotspot for Japanese travelers, and an increasing number of international visitors are now starting to discover this idyllic topical island,” said Olivier Berrivin, Best Western Hotels & Resorts’ Managing Director of International Operations – Asia. “With multiple international flights now landing in Okinawa, including new direct charter services from Singapore, this tropical paradise is more accessible than ever before.“With its absolute beachfront location, spacious rooms and the world-class service that only Best Western can ensure, Best Western Okinawa Kouki Beach is sure to become a popular seaside retreat for both Japanese and international travelers alike. I am confident it will be an excellent addition to our Asian portfolio,” Mr. Berrivin added.Japan is one of Best Western’s largest Asian markets, and the launch of Best Western  Okinawa Kouki Beach marks the next step in the company’s nationwide expansion strategy, following the recent opening of Best Western Rembrandt Hotel Tokyo Machida.In Okinawa Prefecture alone, Best Western now operates three hotels – Best Western Okinawa Onna Beach, Best Western Naha Inn and Best Western Okinawa Kouki Beach – and this latest opening takes the company’s Japanese collection to 14 unique hotels and resorts all across the country, stretching from the snow-capped peaks of Hokkaido in the north to the tropical beaches of Okinawa in the south. Source = Best Western Hotels & Resortslast_img read more

Star Alliance and Juneyao Airlines seal partnership

first_imgSource = Star Alliance – Juneyao Airlines Star Alliance and Juneyao Airlines seal partnershipStar Alliance and Juneyao Airlines seal partnershipAt a ceremony held in Shanghai today, Star Alliance and Juneyao Airlines formally sealed a strategic partnership which will see the Shanghai based airline become a “Connecting Partner” of Star Alliance in 2017. Under the Alliance’s innovative partnership concept, the airline will soon start offering services such as through-check-in, as well as Lounge access and other Priority privileges to qualifying passengers travelling on connecting itineraries with Star Alliance member airlines.“Juneyao Airlines is a terrific addition to our network proposition in China and particularly in the Shanghai market”, said Mark Schwab, CEO Star Alliance. “Thanks to Juneyao’s expanding reach, our passengers will enjoy a wide choice of flight connections through our future partner to numerous Chinese metropoles and several international destinations.”Currently 17 Star Alliance member airlines are operating around 1,600 weekly services in and out of the two Shanghai airports, Pudong International and Hongqiao International, which are both served by Juneyao Airlines. With a fleet of 56 aircraft Juneyao Airlines provides more than 1,700 weekly flights to 69 destinations in eight countries and regions.“Juneyao Airlines is proud to play its role in enlarging the Star Alliance network offer through Shanghai’s two airports. We look forward to welcoming connecting passengers from Star Alliance on our airline in the near future. We offer 53 additional routes which will complement Star Alliance’s existing services from Shanghai and will no doubt attract more connecting passengers to our two home hub airports”, said Wang Junjin, Chairman Juneyao Airlines.“Since starting operations 10 years ago, Juneyao Airlines has earned a strong reputation in the Chinese market. Now it is ready for a further step on its successful growth path. From the beginning of our conversations we were impressed by the carrier’s professionalism and operational efficiencies”, adds Schwab.The Connecting Partner Model is designed to allow airlines to connect to the Star Alliance network without having to become a full member. For customers this gives access to additional travel options beyond the current 1,300 airports served by the Alliance’s 28 member airlines. Connecting Partners are carefully selected and need to adhere to the high operating standards required by the Alliance.Customers travelling on an itinerary which includes a transfer between a Star Alliance member airline and a Connecting Partner will be offered the standard Alliance benefits such as passenger and baggage through check-in. In addition, Star Alliance Gold status customers will enjoy a tailored set of privileges in line with the product offerings of the individual Connecting Partner.Connecting Partners will enter into bilateral commercial agreements with selected Star Alliance member airlines, which may include Frequent Flyer Programme based privileges.“Juneyao Airlines was founded with the aim of offering a competitive and high quality product to both the business and leisure market. It targets customers at middle to high level and creates a relaxing, respectful and professional experience that is unique to Juneyao Airlines. As a full-service carrier, the new strategy of the airline is to become an excellent representative of a High-Value Carrier. I am very happy that this has not gone unnoticed in the industry and that Star Alliance has decided to partner with us. We are looking forward to providing Star Alliance Gold Card holders with a wide selection of privileges when they connect to our airline”, Wang Junjin added.Work has now commenced to establish the necessary technology and commercial links which will allow Juneyao Airlines to begin serving Star Alliance connecting passengers some time during the second quarter 2017. As of then, the airline will be offering the following privileges to qualifying Star Alliance Gold Status passengers travelling on connecting itineraries:Lounge AccessFast Track SecurityAdditional BaggagePriority Check-inPriority BoardingPriority StandbyPriority Baggage Delivery The 17 Star Alliance member airlines flying to Shanghai are: Air Canada, Air China*, Air India, Air New Zealand, ANA*, Asiana*, Austrian, Ethiopian Airlines, EVA Air*, Lufthansa, SAS, Shenzhen Airlines#, Singapore Airlines, SWISS, THAI, Turkish Airlines and United. Together they offer around 830 weekly domestic flights and 760 international flights, serving 62 destinations (26 domestic and 36 international) in 19 countries. Juneyao Airlinesbook flights hereAbout Juneyao AirlinesJuneyao Airlines started formal operation in September 2006 and completed its initial public offering on the Shanghai Stock Exchange in 2015. Today it owns 56 brand new Airbus A320 series aircraft with an average fleet age of 3 years, which is the youngest one for any of the domestic airlines in China. Juneyao Airlines targets the middle-to-high-level official, business and leisure markets. Based in Shanghai the route network of Juneyao Airlines radiates to the whole nation and counts more than 80 domestic routes between Shanghai and Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Chengdu, Chongqing, Kunming, Tianjin and so on. It has also progressively opened up international and regional routes to Hong Kong, Macao, Taipei, Kaohsiung, Thailand, Japan and Korea. At present it carries more than 10 million passengers per year.last_img read more

Cathay Pacific moves New York JFK operations to Terminal 8

first_imgCathay Pacific moves New York JFK operations to Terminal 8Cathay Pacific moves New York JFK operations to Terminal 8Cathay Pacific will relocate its operations at New York’s John F Kennedy International Airport (JFK) to Terminal 8, commencing 15 January, in a move that will benefit its customers through added convenience and enhanced connectivity.The relocation, which sees Hong Kong’s home carrier shift its passenger handling services from Terminal 7, will provide its customers with a more seamless travel experience when connecting to flights operated by Cathay Pacific’s oneworld partner, American Airlines, which has a significant presence at Terminal 8.Flight CX845, with a scheduled departure of 00.45 local time on 15 January, will be Cathay Pacific’s final departure from Terminal 7. All subsequent flights to Hong Kong will depart from Terminal 8, which is the largest passenger terminal at JFK and twice the size of Madison Square Garden.Cathay Pacific Director Service Delivery James Ginns said: “Moving our operations to Terminal 8 at JFK, the home of our oneworld partner American Airlines, will improve our passengers’ travel experience considerably. The first-rate facilities and amenities available, in addition to the significant connectivity advantages that the move brings, will further enhance the delivery of our brand promise of a Life Well Travelled.”All Cathay Pacific passengers will enjoy the myriad dining, retail and entertainment facilities that the terminal provides before boarding their flights, while First and Business Class passengers, in addition to eligible Marco Polo Club members, will have the option of relaxing in American Airlines’ lounges – the Admirals Club or the Flagship Lounge, which is set to be the most impressive on the airline’s network once extensive renovations are completed in April.The Flagship Lounge, which will feature updated interiors, more space, additional privacy and a more personalised service, will also see the introduction of Flagship First Dining, meaning passengers can choose from a seasonal, multi-course menu that features fresh, regionally-inspired dishes designed by an Executive Chef.Cathay Pacific operates more non-stop flights between Hong Kong and New York than any other airline, connecting two of the world’s most important financial centres with four daily services to New York, including one via Vancouver and one daily flight to Newark Liberty International Airport.Cathay Pacific offers more than 70 flights a week from Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Brisbane and Cairns to their Hong Kong and 108 scheduled passenger flights per week from Hong Kong to North America, including 84 flights per week to Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles New York and San Francisco in the United States and 24 flights per week to Toronto and Vancouver in Canada. Source = Cathay Pacificlast_img read more

The Sarojin–New Two Bedroom Pool Residences

first_imgSource = The Sarojin The Sarojin–New Two Bedroom Pool ResidencesThe Sarojin–New Two Bedroom Pool ResidencesNew -Two-Bedroom Pool Residences Following an increase in demand from multi-generational visitors, The Sarojin, Thailand’s luxurious 56-roomed boutique residence, has introduced seven ‘Two-Bedroom Pool Residences’, which are designed to help older families make the most of the resort’s tranquillity, as well as adding value to their stay.This new offering, boasts the full facilities of both the Garden Residence and Pool Residence. The spacious Two-Bedroom Pool Residences are located on the ground floor and have a connecting door between the Pool and Garden Residences, providing the perfect alternative to two separate rooms. The 215 sqm Residences will feature two king size beds, with two extra beds available on request*, making it perfect for family groups of up to six people, including those travelling with grandparents and children 10 years and over.The Two-Bedroom Residences benefit from a 5.5m x 3.5m swimming pool, two outside sun terraces, as well as two luxurious and spacious bathrooms, which feature a couples’ bath, rainfall and adjustable showers.Two Bedroom Pool Residence Rates start at THB 18,501 (approx. AUD 711 ) per night inclusive of daily all day a la carte breakfast with sparkling wine, served until 6pm, for 4 persons and all taxes. Two extra beds can be accommodated and the rate per extra person per night, inclusive of the all day a la carte breakfast with sparkling wine and all taxes, is THB 825/ approx. AUD 31.New Spa Suite Rewards ProgrammeThe Sarojin, is also helping guests indulge even further in its restorative offerings with its new ‘Spa Suite – Spa Bonus Redemption’ programme. All Spa Suite guests now accrue spa credits per room for each night of their stay to exchange for luxurious spa treatments, including individual treatments and lavish spa packages. Guests can choose to spoil themselves with a daily Thai or Royal Oriental (Aroma) massage or accumulate credits for longer massages, body scrubs, Elemis facials and even full spa packages. As a further bonus, using just six nights’ credits, couples can enjoy ultimate relaxation with the four-hour Nature’s Midday Haven package for 2 people, which includes Thai and moisturising massages, aromatic baths, coconut and rice body scrubs, as well as a spa cuisine lunch.Each of the hotel’s 14 luxurious and spacious Spa Suites features an elegant ensuite couples’ bathroom, bedroom with king-size bed, separate spacious lounge area, outdoor 2m diameter relaxation pool and spectacular garden views from its very own private terrace, offering guests the perfect home away from homeSpa Suite room rates start at THB 10,265** (approx. AUD 395** ) per night inclusive of daily all day a la carte breakfast with sparkling wine, served until 6pm, for 2 persons and all taxes. **From rates are for 10 May – 30 September 2018, inclusive of 10 percent early bird / 30 days.last_img read more

Outrigger Fiji Walkathon raises FJD42000

first_imgSource = Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort Outrigger Fiji Walkathon raises FJD$42,000 towards kids educationOutrigger Fiji Walkathon raises FJD$42,000Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort’s annual 10km Walk for Kids raised FJD$42,000 including a FJD$20,000 pledge from the acting Prime Minister, the Honourable Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, who also took part in the walk.Arranged by the resort’s Sales & Marketing department for the fourth consecutive year, the walkathon attracted over 150 guests, staff, school children and locals walking to raise funds towards buying a four-wheel-drive vehicle for the teachers at the Sigatoka Special School.Outrigger Fiji General Manager Peter Hopgood said the vehicle would allow teachers to visit special needs children who could not make it into Sigatoka to attend the school.The funds will also be used towards the construction of two new teachers’ quarters at the Conua District Primary School which is needed to attract new teaching staff after Outrigger built two new classrooms for the school last year.Mr. Hopgood said that when he first visited the school in 2010 there were 55 students.“This year 165 students are enrolled. Back in 2010 the pass rate was 37 per cent. Last year the pass rate was 87 percent and in the past eight years we have also built a kindergarten, library, computer lab and a meeting Bure.”Thanks to Outrigger, and the generosity of its guests and staff, the outlook for students in the Sigatoka region is now much brighter,” Mr. Hopgood said.The annual Walk for Kids event is part of Outrigger’s departmental community projects initiative whereby each month a different hotel department organises a community service of some kind.On a larger scale, the direct-action community tourism project, construction of two new teachers’ quarters at Conua District School is available for resorts guests to participate in as a day excursion. This is anticipated to be completed by November this year.last_img read more

GoAir expands business with four new domestic routes

first_imgGoAir has embarked on a major expansion of its domestic operations, with four new routes and a series of additional flight frequencies. The four new routes will connect Mumbai with Leh, and Bengaluru with three cities: Port Blair, Patna, and Ranchi. The Mumbai-Leh and Bengaluru-Port Blair routes, both of which commence on March 27, are not currently served by any airline.The Leh flights will depart Mumbai at 0400 and arrive in the Himalayan city at 0645. The return services will then depart Leh at 0715 and arrive back in Mumbai at 1115, having made a brief stop in Srinagar.On the Port Blair route, flights will leave Bengaluru at 1430 and arrive at 1715. The return flights will then depart Port Blair at 1125 and arrive back in Bengaluru at 1400.Additional frequencies will also be introduced on the routes from Delhi to Ranchi, Lucknow and Patna with an extra flight between Mumbai and Srinagar.All the new flights will be operated using GoAir’s fleet of 180-seat, all-economy Airbus A320 aircraft.last_img read more

Travelport and Pricelinecom sign renewal agreement

first_imgTwo online travel giants, Travelport and have recently announced that they have signed a long-term renewal agreement. According to the deal, Travelport will continue providing pricing, booking and ticketing technology and content to Priceline.“Travelport has proven to be a valued partner over the last twenty years in helping Priceline customers find and book the best deals,” said Brigit Zimmerman, Senior Vice President of flight, hotel and packages, two companies signed the first accord 20 years ago and after series of strong business, the companies have renewed the deal of doing the business together for a longer span of time. Both the industry giants have worked together to make the process of buying and selling travel and tourism products easier for customers who look for great deals.Jason Clarke, Senior Vice President and Managing Director, Travelport, asserted about their long-standing relationship with Priceline and said, “We are committed to supporting Priceline with our industry-leading search and pricing capabilities, as well as offering Priceline new technologies that offer faster connections, greater content and more relevant choices.”last_img read more

FDIC Files Suit Against Former Georgia Bank

first_imgFDIC Files Suit Against Former Georgia Bank October 11, 2011 440 Views Share in Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicingcenter_img Even as fewer banks fail nationally, the “”FDIC””: recently filed suit against former 11 directors and officers of the institution for which it now serves as receiver, with the goal to collect $23.92 million in damages from the defendants. [IMAGE]Citing negligence and oversight failure, the federal agency filed suit against Alpha Bank & Trust, an Alpharetta, Georgia-based bank closed by state regulators in 2008. The FDIC claimed $214.5 million in approximate costs to the Deposit Insurance Fund, which it said resulted from a swath of bad commercial real estate loans, 11 in total, along with two other loans the bank made to unqualified borrowers.[COLUMN_BREAK]According to the suite, the defendants signed off on 13 of the loans made by the bank to a number of borrowers “”despite plainly inadequate, incomplete, or outdated financials of the borrowers and/or guarantors”” without regard for the ability to repay by any one borrower.””Defendants approved the Loss Loans despite underwriting deficiencies and loan policy violations that were or should have been readily apparent to even a casual reviewer,”” the FDIC alleged in the complaint. The FDIC accused the former directors and officers of violating statutory limits, scrimping on borrower financial information, neglecting improper appraisals, and looking the other way when it came to a borrower’s “”questionable character,”” among other allegations.Numbering 11 in all, the former directors and officers include ex-chairman James Blackwell, onetime president and CEO Joseph Briner, former EVP Robert Skeen III, and David Michael Sleeth, who served as the CFO.Greg Hernandez, a spokesperson for the FDIC, declined to comment for the story given the pending legislation.The suit tracks a pledge by the FDIC to pursue culpable former bank officials. Agency directors signed off on suits to recoup over $2 billion from some 80 former directors and officers from failed institutions last year, according to the “”_Los Angeles Times_””: Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Bank Failure FDIC Investors Lenders & Servicers Processing Service Providers 2011-10-11 Ryan Schuettelast_img read more

Mortgage Rates Up in First Increase of 2014

first_img February 13, 2014 403 Views Adjustable-Rate Mortgage Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Bankrate Fixed-Rate Mortgage Freddie Mac Investors Janet Yellen Lenders & Servicers Service Providers 2014-02-13 Tory Barringer in Data, Origination Mortgage Rates Up in First Increase of 2014center_img Fixed mortgage rates this week saw their first increase in 2014 as markets reacted to mixed signs.[IMAGE]””Freddie Mac””: released Thursday its weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey, which shows the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) moved up to 4.28 percent (0.7 point) for the week ending February 13. Last week, the 30-year fixed average was at 4.23 percent; a year ago, it was 3.53 percent.The 15-year FRM averaged 3.33 percent (0.7 point) this week, unchanged from the last survey.Adjustable rates moved in different directions: The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 3.05 percent (0.5 point), down from 3.08 percent previously. Meanwhile, the 1-year ARM climbed to 2.55 percent (0.4 point) from 2.51 percent.””Mortgage rates were little changed amid a week of light economic reports. Of the few releases, the economy added “”113,000 jobs””: in January, which was below the market consensus forecast and followed a slight upward revision of 1,000 jobs in December,”” said Frank Nothaft, VP and chief economist for Freddie Mac. “”Meanwhile, the unemployment rate fell to 6.6 percent, which makes thirteen consecutive months without an increase.””In its own national survey, “”””: recorded the 30-year fixed average at 4.48 percent, while the 15-year fixed rose slightly less at 3.53 percent.The 5/1 ARM, meanwhile, was 3.32 percent, also up from last week.Analysts for the finance site said it was “”Janet Yellen’s first testimony””: as the head of Federal Reserve that gave a lift to interest rates this week. “”The nervousness in financial markets seen since the beginning of the year has subsided in recent days, aided in part by Janet Yellen’s initial Congressional testimony,”” Bankrate said in a release. “”Economic uncertainty has also diminished in the wake of Yellen’s soothing words, after a run of less-than-stellar releases that included last week’s jobs report.””As a result, mortgage rates reversed much of last week’s decrease, but at this point still remain lower than any point seen in December or January.”” Sharelast_img read more