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T3 News Network

T3 News Network

Lemon Tree Hotels Limited, through its management subsidiary Carnation Hotels, announced the opening of the 44 key resort– Lazy Lagoon, Baga- A Lemon Tree Resort. This marks the launch of the company’s fifth hotel in Goa, with existing hotels in Candolim, Calangute and Morjim.

Located on Baga Creek, Lazy Lagoon, Baga is an expansive and aesthetically designed Lemon Tree Resort. This charming retreat, located in the heart of the vibrant North Goa area, offers alluring views of the Baga River and Creek.

The resort features 44 rooms and suites, which combine understated elegance with modern amenities and facilities. Designed for the comfort of every traveller, most of the plush and comfortable rooms and suites offer a panoramic view of the Baga River and Creek.

Complementing the stay are Citrus Café* - the multi-cuisine coffee shop, and Slounge* – the thriving bar and grill. The banquet hall* – Tangerine Grand, conference room* – Tangerine, and outdoor lawn* provide the perfect venues for corporate and social events alike. Recreational facilities at the resort include a well-equipped fitness center*, Verandah* – a relaxed Sheesha lounge and a stunning swimming pool* where guests can easily spend a few languid hours in a truly susegad state of mind. In addition, adjacent to the poolside is Tavern* – the picturesque pool bar, which opens onto a beautiful promenade that leads to an inviting fishing deck.

The resort caters to every traveller’s needs, from daycationers and extended leisure travellers to beach and party animals. Guests can swim a few laps in the stunning pool, chill at the Verandah, test their skills at the fishing deck, shoot a few games of pool, or beat their friends at foosball. Animal lovers can also spend some time with the six turtles who have taken up residence in one of the lagoons at Lazy Lagoon, Baga. 

The World Travel & Tourism Council is encouraged to see the door beginning to open to allow airport testing on departure. “We have been calling for a rapid and cost-effective testing on departure regime at airports around the world for several months now, so this is a step in the right direction. Latest WTTC research shows the positive effect airport testing will have to revive international air travel, bring back jobs and resuscitate the global economy. Almost 20 million jobs across Europe could be saved, including three million in Germany, 1.93 million in the UK, 1.91 million in Italy and more than 1.5 million in France,” Gloria Guevara, WTTC President & CEO, said.

“That is why we support the introduction of schemes at Charles de Gaulle and Orly airports in Paris, Heathrow in London and the recent trial which took place between Rome’s Fiumicino Airport and Milan Linate. We hope this will inspire other countries to follow their lead and implement similar initiatives,” she said and added that to save the global travel and tourism sector, there is a need to have a standardised international testing protocol.

“Removing or significantly reducing quarantine times, already introduced by some countries, could restore vital international business travel, first on short-haul flights and then between important financial hubs, such as Frankfurt, London and New York and other key transatlantic services. With the commercial aviation sector hanging in the balance, it is more important than ever that we explore every practical avenue to speed up airport testing through targeted pilots,” she added.

Consistent and harmonized travel protocols, enhanced safety measures and the protection of jobs and livelihoods are the main ingredients needed for the restart of tourism. The Sixth meeting of the UNWTO Global Tourism Crisis Committee reminded participants of the need to work together as the only means of advancing the sustainable recovery of the sector. The meeting produced a commitment to create a new UNWTO Committee on Common Safety Protocols to increase confidence in international travel, as well as firm plans for enhanced consumer protection for consumers and measures to protect jobs.

Setting the tone for the meeting, UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili made clear that, with many millions of livelihoods at stake, inaction is not an option, and that the rapid and sustainable recovery of tourism is essential.

“Strong coordination is needed to accelerate the lifting of travel restrictions in a safe and timely manner, to increase investment in systems that support safe travel, including testing on departure, and to sustain and support businesses and jobs. If we fail to address these three priorities, we will fail to restart tourism, and so fail to save millions of livelihoods”, Mr. Pololikashvili said.

This call for coordination was echoed by a diverse range of voices from the top level of politics of all global regions, including  interventions from the Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism of Spain, Reyes Maroto; Ahmed bin Aqil Al Khateeb, Minister of Tourism of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; Khaled El-Enany, Minister of Tourism and Antiquities of Egypt;  Dato’ Sri Hajah Nancy Shukri, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture of Malaysia;  Abdulla Mausoom, Minister of Tourism of the Maldives; Rita Marques, Secretary of State for Tourism for Portugal and Jose Luis Uriarte, Sub-Secretary of Tourism of Chile.

Common safety protocols

At a practical level, a proposal for a new set of common travel protocols was put forward by Harry Theoharis, Minister of Tourism of Greece, and welcomed by UNWTO’s leadership and other members of the Committee. Furthermore, illustrating how safe, international travel can return, Marco Troncone, CEO of Rome Fiumicino Airport highlighted the role robust hygiene protocols and innovation can play in boosting consumer confidence.

Along the same lines, ICC Secretary-General John Denton, explained plans for a comprehensive system of testing on departure to raise consumer confidence and take away the need for quarantine on arrival. Alongside them, Adam Goldstein, Global Chairman of CLIA, and a Luis Felipe Oliveira, Director General of Airports Council International made clear the proactive measures undertaken to cruise tourism and air travel safe for both passengers and workers.

Putting people first

Just as people are at the driving force of global tourism, so too has UNWTO stressed that recovery policies must recovery be people-focused. For starters, restoring consumer trust and coherent and standardized international protocols are mutually reinforcing and critical for the return of tourism. The Crisis Committee meeting saw UNWTO announce plans for a new International Code for the Protection of Tourists. This will be the first legal framework to protect tourists’ rights as consumers, harmonizing minimum standards across different countries and ensuring the fair distribution of responsibility to tourists affecting by the pandemic among stakeholders across the sector.

A technical committee for the creation of the Code is being set up and will meet before the end of the month. Alongside this, UNWTO is working to protect jobs and help workers affected by the pandemic find new opportunities. Addressing the Committee Kamal Ahluwaila of tech company Eightfold.ai outlined the new Jobs Factory portal, launched with UNTWO in order to unite jobseekers with employers.

Harmonized travel criteria

Reflecting UNWTOs high-level relations with European institutions, the European Commissioner for Justice Didier Reynders addressed the Committee to outline plans to introduce common criteria for restrictions on travel across the EU. UNWTO advocated for non-EU Members to be considered part of this movement towards standardisation, particularly the common colour-coded mapping system currently being rolled out for the safe relaunch of free moment.  And reflecting UNWTO’s status as part of the wider UN response to COVID-19, ICAO Secretary-General Fang Liu, was joined by representatives from IATA, ILO, IMO the WHO and for the virtual meeting, in addition to representation from the OECD.

Radisson Hotel Group has announced the launch of a new brand, Radisson Individuals, giving independent hotels and small chains the opportunity to become part of the global Radisson Hotel Group platform and benefit from international exposure, with the freedom to maintain their own unique style and identity.

Radisson Individuals hotels are selected for their original personalities and characteristics, offering guests the chance to discover new locations around the world and at home, while always delivering Radisson Hotel Group’s high standards of quality and “Yes I Can!” service, combined with the local flavors and qualities of the member hotels.

Federico J. González, CEO, Radisson Hotel Group said, “The launch of Radisson Individuals marks another milestone in our ambitious five-year transformation plan to be recognized as one of the top three hotel companies in the world and the brand of choice for owners, guests and talent. We created Radisson Individuals in response to the evolving demands of the modern market. Joining Radisson Individuals is an ideal first step for individual hotels with strong service scores who wish to remain independent or may be considering transitioning to one of our successful core brands in the future. The new brand is also a strong proposition for local and regional hotel brands seeking to explore additional distribution channels and co-branding options.”

Hotels wishing to join Radisson Individuals will undertake a compliance assessment focusing on four key parameters: health and safety compliance, online rating, fire compliance, and their ability to connect to the Group’s main operating systems. Hotels will receive training on the Group’s “Yes I Can!” service philosophy and achieve above 80% Guest Review Index (GRI) score, to ensure that “Every Moment Matters” and that every guest experience pillar is achieved.

Radisson Individuals member hotels will also have the opportunity to become part of Radisson Rewards™, the global guest reward program that offers exclusive benefits and makes each participating property the preferred place to stay for millions of loyal guests worldwide.

The effects of the corona pandemic are shaping German incoming tourism longer than previously assumed. This is the conclusion reached by the update of the study by Tourism Economics, commissioned by the German National Tourist Board (GNTB), which analyses the impact of the pandemic on Germany's 19 most important source markets.

At the beginning of June, analysts were still forecasting a year-on-year decline of 46.2 million in international overnight stays in Germany for 2020 as a whole and a drop in tourist consumer spending of 17.8 billion euros. Based on the latest available data as of the beginning of October, Tourism Economics now expects the number of overnight stays to fall by 51.2 million to 38.1 million and a loss in tourism consumer spending of 18.7 billion euros.

According to current calculations, only a recovery to 86.4 percent of the pre-crisis level of 2019 is predicted for the end of 2023. At that time, the June forecast was still predicting a full recovery over the next four years.

"Especially the current situation in important European source markets for the German Incoming tourism and developments in German cities make it clear that the recovery phase will probably take years," explains Petra Hedorfer, CEO of the GNTB. "This makes it all the more important now to use anti-cyclical marketing to retain customers in the long term and to continue to make the brand strengths of Destination Germany visible.

Romit Theophilus, Head of the German National Tourist Office, India  adds for the source market India: "Despite setbacks from the COVID-19 crisis GNTO, India prepares to bounce back in the later part of the year by organising a series of events with Trade to promote Germany’s appeal as a Travel destination”.

The detailed forecast of the regions of origin of potential travellers to Germany reinforces the basic statement made in June that European source markets are more likely to recover than overseas markets. The order of the largest source markets for German inbound tourism remains the same in the Corona crisis: In 2020, the most important source market for incoming travel will continue to be the Netherlands, followed by Switzerland, the USA, the UK and Austria.

However, the longer-term forecasts for demand from abroad are much more cautious than in June of this year. According to the latest analyses, Europe will fall short of expectations in 2023 with a minus of 9.4 percent in international overnight stays, and demand from overseas will remain well below expectations at minus 24.6 percent negative range. According to this, the overall balance for 2023 would also remain negative at minus 13.6 percent and reaching the pre-crisis level does not appear realistic again until 2024.

Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE, will become the first GCC carrier to operate a commercial passenger flight to and from Israel, to bring Israel’s top travel and tourism leaders to the UAE.

The historic flight, flown in partnership with the Maman Group, will depart Tel Aviv on October 19, operated by an Etihad Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft for the three-and-a-half-hour journey from Israel to the UAE. The return journey will depart Abu Dhabi on October 21.

As a travel trade mission, the flight will bring a group of tourism industry leaders, key corporate decision makers, travel agents, and cargo agents, along with media to experience Abu Dhabi and the wider UAE, at the invitation of Etihad Airways and representatives of Abu Dhabi’s tourism industry.

This is the latest development in a growing cooperation between the two nations following the establishment of diplomatic ties, and the signing of the Abraham Accords between the UAE and Israel in Washington D.C. on September 15. It also follows Israeli national airline El Al’s first symbolic commercial flight between Tel Aviv and Abu Dhabi on August 31.

Mohamed Mubarak Fadhel Al Mazrouei, Chairman, Etihad Aviation Group, said, “Today’s flight is a historic opportunity for the development of strong partnerships here in the UAE, and in Israel, and Etihad as the national airline, is delighted to be leading the way. We are just starting to explore the long-term potential of these newly forged relationships, which will be sure to greatly benefit the economies of both nations, particularly in the areas of trade and tourism, and ultimately the people who call this diverse and wonderful region home.”

As an important facilitator of trade, the flights between Tel Aviv and Abu Dhabi will also carry commercial cargo sourced from, and destined for, points across Etihad’s global network, in addition to commercial guests.

Coinciding with the first commercial flight and in celebration of the recent peace accords between the UAE and Israel, Etihad has become the first non-Israeli airline in the Middle East to launch a dedicated website for the Israeli market in Hebrew. Also available in English, the Israeli version of the airline’s official website contains digital content including extensive information on Etihad’s operations, product, services, and network. The site also includes an Abu Dhabi destination guide.

Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (CSMIA) has launched its express COVID-19 RT-PCR test facility for all passengers departing from the airport. This facility is also available for non-passengers visiting the airport to drop off or collect their loved ones. This initiative addresses passenger concerns regarding the different COVID-19 regulations across domestic and international destinations; departing passengers can undergo the test at CSMIA before travelling to their onward destination and produce their negative test report to skip institutional quarantine at their destination.

Initially launched for arriving international transit passengers in line with the directive from the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA), CSMIA has now further extended the availability of the test facility for passengers departing from the airport as well. The facility is located on the curbside of Level 4 at Terminal 2 for departing passenger; non-passengers can also opt to undergo the test at this location. Departing passengers can make an online booking by through the test feature available on www.csmia.aero or register themselves at the helpdesk set up at departures to enroll for the RT-PCR test before entering the terminal and receive a digital copy mailed directly or can also collect the physical copy of the test report within 8 hours. Passengers departing from the airport are encouraged to arrive at the terminal 8-12 hours before their scheduled departure.

CSMIA had first launched the RT-PCR test facility on September 6, 2020, for arriving international passengers transiting to a domestic destination from Mumbai as a measure to skip institutional quarantine upon arrival. This was later extended to all passengers arriving at the airport as directed by MoCA. Since the commemoration of the test facility at the airport, CSMIA has witnessed a total of over 3,340 passengers who opted for the test, of which over 2930 were males and over 400 females. The testing facility at the airport registers on average approx. 100 tests per day at the airport. Out of the test conducted at the airport till date, 38 passengers tested positive for Covid-19 and were transferred by the state authorities to designated COVID-19 institutions. Additionally, the RT-PCR testing at the airport is the fastest test facility in the city of Mumbai.

With test facilities now available at both departures and arrivals at the airport, passengers can easily transit to and from CSMIA with comfort. The airport continues to follow all protocols laid down by the government and maintain the highest standard of hygiene along with all necessary standard operating procedures to curb the spread of the virus. CSMIA is making all efforts to mitigate travel restrictions for its passengers and provide in a secure and seamless journey in the wake of the pandemic.

Sarovar Hotels and Resorts has announced the expansion of its portfolio in Maharashtra with the signing of a fine hotel in Aurangabad.

Sarovar Portico upon completion will offer 68 well- appointed rooms and suites offering modern amenities and personalised service. The hotel aims to promote business and tourism in the area and offer high-quality service and stay options. The hotel is strategically located in Shendra MIDC and in close proximity to the airport.

Offering guests a comfortable stay and pleasant experience, Sarovar Portico will feature state- of- the- art banquet Hall conferencing and meeting facilities; multi- cuisine restaurant; and a Fitness center. With unmatched F&B offerings and seamless service, it is also the perfect venue to host social as well as corporate events.

Anil Madhok, Executive Chairman, Sarovar Hotels, said, “We are glad to be setting our footprints in this rich heritage city and getaway to numerous exotic tourist destinations. With our immense focus on providing quality accommodation and services at the best rates, we hope to ensure a pleasant stay for all our guests travelling to this region.”

Thomas Cook (India) and its Group Company SOTC Travel have partnered with Accor to launch Holiday Safe. The holiday portfolio aims at reassuring customers with comprehensive health and safety protocols incorporated via Thomas Cook India & SOTC’s Assured Safe Travel Program in partnership with Apollo Clinics, together with Accor’s Cleanliness and Prevention ALLSAFE label, developed with and vetted by Bureau Veritas. The attractively priced holidays, starting at Rs. 5 999.00*, include unique experiences and value additions across a range of domestic and international destinations.

While extended lockdowns and work-from-home stress have resulted in strong pent up travel demand for short drivable distance vacations, Indian consumers have understandably rated health-safety as their priority. Thomas Cook India, SOTC and Accor have hence leveraged their collective expertise in curating the Holiday Safe range that delivers on their comprehensive measures towards hygiene and safety while ensuring customers a memorable holiday experience.

Madhavan Menon, Chairman & Managing Director, Thomas Cook (India) Ltd. said, “As Indian travellers look to maximize their experiences while minimizing risk, our focus on customer health and safety remains our top priority. To build consumer confidence in the COVID era, we are delighted to announce our association with the Accor Group, one of the world’s largest and most respected hospitality brands. Our Holiday Safe collection incorporates the comprehensive measures of the Thomas Cook India & SOTC Assured Safe Travel Program and Accor’s Cleanliness & Prevention ALLSAFE label - with standards developed with and vetted by Bureau Veritas. This collaboration aimed at building a safe travel environment for customers, is inbuilt with clean-safe protocols across every step of the customer journey, and also incorporates unparalleled holiday experiences to delight the Indian traveller.”

Commenting on the partnership, Puneet Dhawan, Senior VP Operations, Accor India & South Asia, said, “In the current environment, we believe the ultimate determinant of guests returning is health and safety blended with innovative experiences and rewarding benefits. As an industry, this is the time to show solidarity and work together reassuring guests that it is safe to travel. Taking forward our endeavour to instil confidence amongst guest for safe holidays, we are proud to partner with Thomas Cook and SOTC and look forward to providing a holistic experience to our guests.”

The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) will work alongside the Expedia Group to strengthen ties between the public and private sectors and drive tourism’s recovery from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The two parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will see them collaborate on a range of topics, with the common goal of driving recovery and making the sector more resilient and sustainable.

UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili met with representatives of the Expedia Group in Brussels, on the back of successful talks with leaders of the European Institutions. Highlighting UNWTO’s commitment to strengthening ties with the private sector, this enhanced partnership will see the United Nations Specialized Agency work more closely with the Expedia Group. Joint actions will focus on market intelligence and innovation. UNWTO and Expedia will also work together to promote entrepreneurship and professional education, and in the field of consumer protection.

“From the very start of this crisis, UNWTO has been a strong advocate of close cooperation between the public and private sectors. This enhanced partnership will help improve our knowledge of global tourism trends, allowing us to respond to new challenges and guide tourism’s recovery. It will also help us place innovation and sustainability at the heart of this recovery, ensuring tourism emerges stronger than before,” Pololikashvili said.

The partnership with between UNWTO and Expedia Group will see both parties share data on tourism trends and developments, both at the global and the local scale. This will help inform decision-making, producing data-based policies aimed a tourism’s sustainable recovery and future development.

 

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