Current News

Check out the latest news from around the world by the industry's movers and shakers.

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COVID-19 Resource Centre

We have compiled a list of sources to help you access the latest information regarding COVID-19. Details and information surrounding COVID-19 are constantly changing. We will continue to monitor the situation and post relevant resources as they come in.

 

Current News

November 24, 2020
GBTA Completes Acquisition of ACTE

Alison Taylor and Steve Sitto to join the GBTA Board of Directors; Christle Johnson and Greeley Koch to co-chair new Integration and Brand re-activation committee
 
Alexandria, Virginia - The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), the world’s largest business travel association, has completed its acquisition of key assets of the Association of Corporate Travel Executives (ACTE), continuing its pledge to unify the industry and help lead business travel out of the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
“We are beyond thrilled to bring GBTA and ACTE together, creating one home for the thousands of business travel professionals who will collectively bring back business travel bigger and better than ever,” said Bhart Sarin, President of GBTA.
 
“The addition of an amazing brand like ACTE will give GBTA members the absolute best opportunities for education, networking, research and advocacy. We look forward to combining the best attributes of both associations with our Ready. Safe. Travel campaign as we continue to advocate for business travel’s path to recovery,” said Dave Hilfman, Interim Executive Director of GBTA.
 
As part of the integration effort, two former ACTE Board members will join the GBTA Global Board of directors effective immediately.  Alison Taylor, Chief Customer Officer of American Airlines, will serve the remainder of the vacant ALC Vice Presidency. Steve Sitto, Sr. Manager, Global Travel and Events for Tesla, Inc., will serve the remainder of the vacant Direct Member At-Large term. Both terms will be completed at the time of the GBTA Convention in July 2021.
 
In addition, a committee led by GBTA Chairman Christle Johnson and former ACTE Executive Director and current DigitTravel Consulting Senior Vice President Greeley Koch will work together with GBTA staff and industry volunteers to identify the best value a combined GBTA and ACTE can deliver to its members.
 
“This very challenging year has presented us with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” said Sarin, “We look forward to creating the world’s best association for travel professionals to learn, network, and grow.”
 
About the Global Business Travel Association
The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) is the world’s premier business travel and meetings trade organization headquartered in the Washington, D.C. area with operations on six continents. GBTA’s 9,000-plus members manage more than $345 billion of global business travel and meetings expenditures annually. GBTA delivers world-class education, events, research, advocacy, and media to a growing global network of more than 28,000 travel professionals and 125,000 active contacts. To learn how business travel drives lasting business growth, visit www.gbta.org.
 
About the Association of Corporate Travel Executives
The Association of Corporate Travel Executives (ACTE) represented the global business travel industry through international advocacy efforts, executive level educational programs, and independent industry research. ACTE's membership consisted of senior travel industry executives from 82 countries and delivered educational programs in key business centers throughout the world.

November 20, 2020
YQB Achieves Global Accreditation for Excellence of its Practices

QUÉBEC CITY The health measures in place at Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport (YQB) since the start of the global COVID-19 pandemic have earned it the Airport Health Accreditation global seal of excellence from Airports Council International (ACI).

"The health and safety of our passengers and employees is always a top priority at YQB. From the very beginning of the pandemic, we quickly deployed proactive measures to ensure that the Québec City airport remained a safe place. We continue to hold regular biosafety discussions with our business partners. Together, we have an obligation to be prepared and proactive," stated Stéphane Poirier, President and CEO of YQB. 

The Airport Health Accreditation recognizes the implementation of health standards at airports, in line with the recommendations of the International Civil Aviation Organization's (ICAO) Aviation Recovery Task Force. Accreditation is granted following a rigorous evaluation based on cleaning and disinfection standards, social distancing, protection of employees, layout of the premises and communications to passengers. 

Reminder of the current measures at YQB

Since the beginning of the pandemic, YQB has been proactive: 

  • Cleaning procedures have been enhanced; 
  • The number of available luggage carts has been reduced so that they can be cleaned more often; 
  • Hand sanitizer kiosks have been set up along passengers' route through the terminal; 
  • Signage and floor markings have been installed as a reminder of hygiene and social distancing measures; 
  • Wearing a mask is mandatory at all times in the terminal; 
  • Access to the terminal building has been restricted to same-day passengers and airport employees; 
  • Temperature screening of passengers and non-passengers takes place at checkpoints by the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA).

In addition, we strongly encourage all passengers to check in online prior to their flight to reduce human interaction in the terminal.

More information

About Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport (YQB)
YQB is managed by Aéroport de Québec Inc., a private corporation responsible for the airport's management, operation, maintenance and development since November 1, 2000. Around a dozen carriers offer flights from YQB to destinations in North America, Central America, the Caribbean, Mexico and Europe, and daily flights to the main hubs in eastern North America

November 19, 2020
WestJet to offer approved pre-flight testing for Hawaii travel

Program exempts travellers from Hawaii quarantine and becomes Canada's first safe air travel corridor 

CALGARY, AB  WestJet today announced it has collaborated with the State of Hawaii to begin offering a pre-flight COVID-19 testing program for guests travelling to the islands. A negative test result, from WestJet laboratory partner DynaLIFE, is required within 72-hours of departure to Hawaii and will exempt the guest from the state's required 14-day quarantine upon arrival. 

"Safety remains our number one priority and we thank Governor Ige and the State of Hawaii for providing this opportunity for Canadians to enjoy all that the islands have to offer while safely supporting the tourism industry," said Arved von zur Muehlen, WestJet Chief Commercial Officer. "WestJet's teams are working hard to rebuild confidence in air travel through important partnerships like this one with Hawaii's Trusted Travel Partner program and DynaLIFE. With pre-departure and arrivals testing now available through the collaborative efforts of the Governments of Canada, the Government of Albertaand the YYC Calgary International Airport, our guests have a wonderful opportunity to enjoy safe and enjoyable travel without the rigorous quarantine requirements." 

"Many Canadians love to visit Hawaiʻi during the winter months to escape the cold weather, so the timing for this works well. Hawaiʻi has the most rigorous pre-travel testing program in the United States, and we're grateful to WestJet for making it available to their passengers," said Hawaii's Governor David Ige.

The airline will begin the testing program in partnership with DynaLIFE in Alberta for guests holding a WestJet-ticketed itinerary to Hawaii within 72-hours. Details can be found here: westjet.com/covidtesting. While the testing, which costs $150 CAD per person and is payable by the guest, is currently only available in Alberta, the testing is open to all Canadian residents. Guests travelling to Hawaii are responsible for ensuring they receive a test within 72-hours of their flight departing to Hawaii in order to avoid quarantine and will be required to display their negative test result prior to boarding. If test results are not available before boarding the final leg of the trip, the traveller must quarantine for 14 days or the length of the stay, whichever is shorter.

All visitors intending to visit Hawaii must register prior to travel: Hawaii entrance requirements are found at https://hawaiicovid19.com/travel/

On November 2, YYC Calgary International Airport began hosting the COVID-19 testing trial supported by the Governments of Canada and Alberta, trialing a reduced quarantine period upon arrival in Alberta with a negative test result, while protecting Canadians from COVID-19. 

Since the beginning of the pandemic, WestJet has implemented more than 20 additional health and safety measures during the travel journey and continues to evolve its cleaning protocols to meet the needs of guests and WestJetters through its Safety Above All program

About WestJet 
Since the start of the pandemic the WestJet Group of Companies has built a layered framework of safety measures to ensure Canadians can continue to travel safely and responsibly through the airline's Safety Above All hygiene program. During this time, WestJet has maintained its status as one of the top-10 on-time airlines in North America as named by Cirium.

For more information about everything WestJet, please visit westjet.com

November 17, 2020
McMaster HealthLabs Releases Interim Report on COVID-19 Study of Arriving International Travellers

Preliminary findings provide important data for policy makers

TORONTO - McMaster Health Labs (MHL) has released its Canadian International COVID-19 Surveillance Border Study interim report, which was conducted with support from the Government of Canada and in partnership with Air Canada and the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA). Independent analysis of the Border Study's interim results has been conducted by the study team; additional analysis and full results are expected to be shared in January 2021.

The MHL study was established to gather data on COVID-19 infection rates of incoming international travellers, to help determine if an airport-based surveillance program is feasible, to determine whether self-collection of COVID-19 testing is effective, and to explore options regarding the 14-day quarantine for international travellers. 

The study is the largest of its kind in the world.  Most other border testing studies have used a "test and release" approach.  The MHL study is unique in collecting COVID-19 test data from individuals at three different time points: upon arrival and at days seven and fourteen, which provides a comprehensive data set for policy makers.  

The study was conducted between September 3 and November 14, 2020. It is anticipated that the final report will be based on more than 16,000 participants completing more than 40,000 tests.

Interim results are based on more than 20,000 tests conducted on more than 8,600 study participants recruited from September 3 to October 2, 2020.  

The interim results indicate: 

  • 99% of study participants tested negative for COVID-19 with 1% testing positive 
  • Of the 1% testing positive for COVID 19: 
    • 0.7% detected on arrival 
    • 0.3% detected on day 7 
    • <0.1% detected on day 14 
  • The pilot phase has demonstrated the feasibility of airport-based testing with self-collected nasal/oral swabs as well as home-based collection during quarantine

"Interim results from the border study support a test and reduced quarantine approach such as that being piloted in Calgary," said Dr. Vivek Goel, co-principal investigator of the study, professor at the University of Toronto and a former CEO of Public Health Ontario. "Testing upon arrival with a follow-up test to catch later positive results could provide a reasonable path forward to help keep borders and the economy open while maintaining public safety."

Experts agree that COVID-19 will be with us for some time and that testing will be a critical part of the strategy needed to keep borders open and to stop restrictive lockdowns to contain the virus – even if a vaccine emerges. 

"The border study provides public health officials with critical information to support decision making through the pandemic," said Dr. Marek Smieja, MHL scientific director, co-principal investigator of the study and a professor of pathology and molecular medicine at McMaster University. "In addition to demonstrating the feasibility of conducting COVID-19 testing at the airport, the study has also shown the effectiveness of a self-collected COVID-19 sample using a cheek and nasal swab that is completed in minutes."  

"These interim results are very encouraging and provide robust data for governments to make science-based policy decisions with respect to safely reopening our country. The updated results strongly suggest that some form of a testing regime can provide a viable alternative to a blanket, 14-day quarantine requirement and also provide a mechanism to reduce travel restrictions more generally," said Dr. Jim Chung, Air Canada's Chief Medical Officer. 

"The Greater Toronto Airports Authority remains committed to protecting the health and wellbeing of passengers and airport workers, using a science-based approach," said Deborah Flint, President and CEO. "Today's announcement by McMaster HealthLabs shows that the current response to COVID-19 can be refined based on scientific findings, including these from the largest COVID-19 study of its kind in the world. We welcome the opportunity to continue collaborating with the Government of Canada, determining the next steps toward a safe, responsible resumption of international travel."

The Border Study has been conducted in accordance with research ethics board-approved scientific protocols. Consenting participants provided a sample to MHL researchers before leaving the airport and then supplied two additional samples self-collected at seven and fourteen days after arrival, coinciding with Canada's current quarantine period. Study samples have been analyzed at the Research Institute of St. Joe's Hamilton using the gold standard PCR testing for COVID-19 detection. 

A final report of the Border Study will be available in January 2021 and will include information on infection rates within age groups and across genders, as well as data on the psychological impact of quarantine. 

About McMaster HealthLabs
McMaster HealthLabs (MHL) is a non-profit organization that develops COVID-19 research initiatives and testing solutions to keep Canadians safe and to get them back to work. MHL works with a team of scientists and doctors from McMaster University, the Research Institute of St. Joe's Hamilton in Ontario, and other Canadian universities and research organizations. MHL partners with Verto Health, leveraging its innovative digital twin technology solutions in MHL research initiatives. MHL collaborates with Deloitte Canada for strategic and operational advisory support on this study. MHL is focused on curbing the human, economic and social costs of COVID-19 by creating scientific research initiatives that help Canadian leaders make evidence-based decisions. For more information, please visit mcmasterhealthlabs.ca.

November 16, 2020
WestJet adds holiday heat to December schedule

Airline adds flights for sun seekers to the U.S., Mexico, the Caribbeanand Costa Rica
More domestic flights available to meet Canadians' travel needs during the holidays

CALGARY, AB - WestJet today released its updated December schedule featuring up to 55 daily flights to sun destinations in the Caribbean, the United States (including Hawaii) and Mexico. The schedule also highlights increased domestic frequencies for travel starting December 5, 2020 through to January 4, 2021.

"While this winter travel season looks quite different from years past, we are pleased to be able to offer our guests a variety of flights during the holidays," said Arved von zur Muehlen, WestJet Chief Commercial Officer. "Whatever the reason for travel, WestJet continues to safely connect Canadians to destinations across our network and will continue to make changes to the schedule to meet the ever-changing needs of our guests and airline."

For sun seekers the airline is adding December flights to Liberia(Costa Rica), Punta Cana, Puerto Plata (Dominican Republic), Bridgetown (Barbados), Mazatlán (Mexico), Huatulco (Mexico), Orlando, Las Vegas, Honolulu (Oahu) and Kahului (Maui).

WestJet continues to operate at a reduced schedule and has removed over 63 per cent capacity year over year, including approximately 73 per cent capacity from the December schedule alone. During the holiday season, the airline will offer flights to 54 destinations including 33 in Canada, nine in the U.S. including Hawaii, five in Mexico, five in the Caribbean, one in Europe and one in Central America. Frequencies will increase throughout the month of December, full details at bottom of the release.

Canadians travelling back through Calgary see benefits of post-travel testing trial

On November 2, YYC Calgary International Airport began the COVID-19 testing trial supported by the Governments of Canada and Alberta, trialing a reduced quarantine period in Alberta, while protecting Canadians from COVID-19.

"Many Canadians are seeking alternatives to the 14-day quarantine and the testing trial at Calgary International Airport is a welcome first step," continued von zur Muehlen. "We are optimistic in the early results of the YYC COVID testing trial and hope to see future expansion of testing opportunities closely follow at airports across the country."

Canadians travelling abroad are still subject to a 14-day quarantine upon their return to the country if not eligible for Alberta's COVID-19 testing trial program.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, WestJet has implemented more than 20 additional health and safety measures during the travel journey and continues to evolve its cleaning to meet the needs of guests and WestJetters through its Safety Above All program.

About WestJet
Since the start of the pandemic the WestJet Group of Companies has built a layered framework of safety measures to ensure Canadians can continue to travel safely and responsibly through the airline's Safety Above All hygiene program. During this time, WestJet has maintained its status as one of the top-10 on-time airlines in North America as named by Cirium.   

For more information about everything WestJet, please visit westjet.com.

November 11, 2020
Atlantis Paradise Island Resumes Operations December 10th

Resort Will Reopen With Renovated Guestrooms, Reimagined Guest Experiences, New Flight Package And A Limited-Time Offer: Complimentary First Night

~ The Most Remarkable Destination Resort in the World Welcomes Back Guests with Authentic Bahamian Hospitality, Five Miles of White Sand Beaches, Atlantis Casino, Marina, Mandara Spa, Fine Dining by Nobu and Todd English's Olives, Aquaventure Slides plus Atlantis Clean & Safe Promise and More ~ 

PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas -- Atlantis Paradise Island announces the world's most remarkable resort destination, beloved and rooted in its famous Bahamian hospitality, will resume operations on December 10th, just in time for the winter holiday and festive season. Returning guests will delight in Atlantis' renovated Royal East Tower guestrooms, Harborside Resort villas, and The Reef residential-style studios and suites (opening December 17th), along with Dolphin Cay's personalized guest experiences, a new family package, and much more. In celebration of Atlantis' reopening, guests can take advantage of the limited-time, first-night free offer, bookable between November 10th – 22nd, and valid for stays between December 10th – 17th with a two-night minimum length of stay.

To further ensure the safety, health, and well-being of their guests and resort team, visitors to Atlantis Paradise Island will be opting-in to vacation in place throughout the duration of their stay. The resort spans close to 200 acres with five miles of white sand beaches and tranquil azure waters, multiple pools, diverse dining, spa, golf, shopping, reimagined experiences customized with guests' safety in mind, a multitude of attractions, and other luxury amenities at their fingertips.  Guests have more than enough to keep them entertained without ever having to leave the resort. Travelers can immerse themselves in the resort's popular amenities, including Atlantis Casino, the Marina, Mandara Spa, Ocean Club Golf Course, fine dining at Nobu, and Todd English's Olives, Crystal Court shops, Marina Village, Aquaventure, Dolphin Cay, the world's largest open-air marine habitat encompassing over 50,000 aquatic animals, and more – all with physical distancing measures in place.

Upon reopening, Atlantis will also unveil new bespoke experiences curated for families, small groups, and couples. From exclusive family adventures at Dolphin Cay and private sunset speedboat tours to art tours, shark and mermaid camps, secluded dinners on the beach, dive-in movie nights, and more, friends and family will be able to reconnect over a wide variety of options, modified to meet new safety protocols. Travelers' safety is reassured with the comprehensive Atlantis Clean & Safe Promise, and the resort's professional team members prepared and trained to attend to every guest's well-being.  

For travelers flying from the New York Tri-State region, Atlantis Paradise Island has partnered with JetBlue on an air and resort package offering non-stop charter flights to Nassau, Bahamas from Newark, NJ. Beginning January 3, 2021, guests who book this package will receive non-stop direct roundtrip air service from Newark to Nassau(Sunday to Sunday flights), seven-night accommodations in Atlantis' renovated Royal East Tower, roundtrip airport transfers and a $75daily dining credit per person. To book these packages call 1-800-ATLANTIS.

"We are so excited to welcome back our loyal guests, families, and new visitors to experience Atlantis Paradise Island and reconnect with themselves and their loved ones. Atlantis will reopen in planned phases, and our highest priority is and will always be to ensure the health, safety, and well-being of our guests, team members, and community. To help reassure travelers, we have implemented our Atlantis Clean & Safe Promise, which meets international and local standards for health and safety protocols," said Audrey Oswell, President and Managing Director, Atlantis Paradise Island. "Our guests will receive heartfelt service and create lifelong memories by being immersed in our authentic Bahamian culture, experiences, and attractions available throughout our lush resort grounds."

Reservations to Atlantis Paradise Island are available now by visiting atlantisbahamas.com or by calling 1-800-ATLANTIS. Room rates begin at $299 per night plus tax and resort fees. Please visit atlantisbahamas.com/travel-info for more information about the reopening. For more information about traveling to The Bahamas, please visit bahamas.com.

About Atlantis Paradise Island: 
Atlantis Paradise Island is a lush, oceanside resort located on Paradise Island in The Bahamas. A dynamic destination that over launched 25 years ago as a first-of-its-kind modern marvel of nature and engineering, Atlantis has embarked on a new chapter tied to a meaningful connection with the ocean, Bahamian culture, and the spirit of the property's beloved team members. The resort's new, immersive programming connects guests to the rich history, art, people, food, and festivities of The Bahamas.

Atlantis features five distinct properties, from the iconic The Royal to The Beach and The Coral to the luxury properties, The Cove and The Reef. The resort is built around Aquaventure, an innovative, 141-acre waterscape of thrilling slides and river rides, pools, and white sand beaches. Home to the largest open-air marine habitat in the world, over 50,000 marine animals from 250 species make their home in the ocean fed environments. From unparalleled meeting and convention space to the luxury Atlantis Marina accommodating yachts up to 220 feet overlooking Marina Village, a Bahamian marketplace, the Atlantis experiences are endless. Other resort amenities include the 30,000 sq ft tranquil Mandara Spa, Atlantis Kids Adventures (AKA) for children ages 3-12, and CRUSH, a cutting-edge teen club. The resort's award-winning 18-hole Tom Weiskopf designed golf course, renowned Atlantis Casino, and duty-free shopping are complemented by the resort's restaurants and lounges with celebrity chef culinary masterpieces including Fish by José Andrés, Nobu, by Nobu Matsuhisa; Olives, by Todd English and Casa D'Angelo by Chef Angelo Elia. 

Dolphin Cay, the resort's 14-acre marine mammal habitat, is a state-of-the-art education center and animal-rescue rehabilitation hospital whose first residents were 17 rescue dolphins from Hurricane Katrina. Visitors to Dolphin Cay can participate in creative, non- disruptive "interactions" that build real awareness, stir emotion, and help fund the resort's conservation efforts. Through these guest participations and those offered through Atlantis Marine Adventures, a portion of the cost of each of the on-property interactions goes back to the Atlantis Blue Project Foundation (ABPF), the resort's nonprofit, 501(c)3 organization dedicated to saving sea species and their extraordinary habitats throughout The Bahamas and surrounding Caribbean seas.

CONTACT: 
Erika Garcia-Lavyne
Atlantis Paradise Island
954-235-1835
Erika.lavyne@atlantisparadise.com 

November 10, 2020
Air France and KLM Canada provide further details following changes to entry rules into France and The Netherlands
New European Union travel rules regarding Canadians
 

Further to the new restrictions in effect, Air France and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Canada wish to clarify the changes made to the entry rules into France and the Netherlands for Canadians.

“The new European Union rules, and the steps taken by each of the countries involved, are restricting travel possibilities to France and the Netherlands for all Canadians, who are no longer permitted to enter these countries for non-essential reasons,” clarified Catherine Guillemart-Dias, Vice-President and General Manager of Air France KLM Canada. “Nonetheless, as we have been doing since the pandemic’s outset, we are maintaining operations to provide those who need and are able to travel with options, including Canadians exempted from these measures, nationals with a valid passport from the countries involved, and   anyone whose final destination connects via Charles de Gaulle or Schiphol.  Our flights are also available to businesses that need to ship cargo to Europe and elsewhere around the world by air,” added Catherine Guillemart-Dias.
 
The Air France-KLM Group reminds everyone that European Union, Schengen area and UK residents and passport holders can enter France and the Netherlands. Health and safety requirements – negative rapid Covid testing, quarantining – may vary according to origin and destination.

Entry into France and the Netherlands for Canadians
 
With some exceptions, including visa holders and people travelling for specific business needs, humanitarian or medical purposes, Canadian passport holders travelling for non-essential reasons are now forbidden from entering France and the Netherlands.
 
All travellers, regardless of nationality, authorized to fly to France will require to complete an International Travel Certificate to Mainland France and a Sworn Statement of absence of Covid-19 symptoms.  In addition, a negative Covid test is now mandatory to enter France.  It is recommended that a test be taken and the results obtained less than 72 hours prior departing from Canada.  Tests are also available on arrival at Charles-de-Gaulle airport. As for the Netherlands, each visitor must complete a Passenger Health Declaration. 
 
Canadians may still transit through Amsterdam or Paris to travel to other Air France KLM countries they are permitted to enter.  Passengers in transit are submitted to the entry regulations of their final destination country.  Should their connection in Paris or Amsterdam be on a flight operated by another airline, it is recommended to check the rules to transfer to this carrier prior departure.
 
Border openings and closings continue to fluctuate all over the world. Passengers are responsible for all the documents they require for their trip and must ensure they meet all of the destination country’s legal requirements pertaining to immigration and border control. Travellers are advised to check with the country in question as to the rules they must follow both at the time of booking their flight, a few days prior their departure and before leaving home for the airport.
https://airfrance.traveldoc.aero/     https://klm.traveldoc.aero/

Covid testing

The entry requirements for many countries – including France – now include a negative Covid-19 test result.   In France, only RT PCR, RT LAMP or Antigenic tests will be accepted.  Air France and KLM have agreements in place with various laboratories and clinics in Canada, aimed at accelerating the testing process for their customers and making it possible for them to meet the requirements of the countries involved. 

 

Booking with flexibility

To respond to the needs of travellers during these uncertain times, Air France and KLM have adapted their commercial policies and rolled out commercial measures that are 100% flexible.  Customers no longer able to travel as a result of these new rules can rebook in the same booking class for another date – no fee, no reason required. Or if they prefer, they may request a credit voucher.  This policy also applies to all new bookings, whether the cancellation is triggered by changes in rules at the flight destination or a decision to call off the trip, regardless of the reason.

 More information

Air France
 
KLM
 
The health and safety of passengers and crew are paramount for Air France and KLM, which is why the airlines wish to remind travellers that the Level 3 health notice issued by the government of Canada warning against non-essential travel is still in effect for Canadian passport holders, as is the order banning foreign nationals from entering Canada.  The Quarantine Act in effect applies to all travellers entering Canada.
 
November 02, 2020
Reward employee excellence with Club Med’s no-expiry gift certificates this holiday season

Incentivize team members with the reward of a dream vacation they will never forget


TORONTO – Club Med, the leader in all-inclusive travel, understands that Canadians are now anticipating and craving travel more than ever after almost all business trips were cancelled or postponed in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A study done by the Incentive Research Foundation concluded that over 70 per cent of program owners who postponed incentive travel recognized the need to continue rewarding outstanding employees. Club Med offers an alternative way to commend exceptional employee performance this year with gift certificates that offer a wide array of vacation options from within North America to overseas. With no expiration, leaders can honour staff with the gift of personalized travel, to be enjoyed now or at a future date.

Studies prove that travel rewards are more effective than cash bonuses in increasing employee motivation to excel in their role. With the holiday season quickly approaching, employers will not be able to ring in the season in typical fashion with holiday parties and events. Club Med gift certificates are the perfect way to keep employees’ spirits merry and bright, allowing them to enjoy an enriching, re-energizing and personalized holiday gift that they will truly appreciate.
 
Club Med’s enhanced flexibility and safety measures ensure that travellers can book and enjoy vacations stress-free, allowing them to truly unwind on their next trip. Club Med gift certificates have a guaranteed no-expiry date and Club Med offers free cancellation of vacation packages up to 15 days before the travel date. When travellers arrive at their destination they have peace of mind with Club Med’s Safe Together Program of enhanced hygiene and safety measures. Club Med’s Emergency Assistance Program provides guests with medical coverage in case of emergency during their stay, including any issues related to COVID-19. These measures allow travellers to vacation when and where they want and ensures they feel safe when they do so. Full details are as follows:

  • No Expiration: Corporate gift certificates can be redeemed at any time for travel in any Club Med resort worldwide and for any product booked in advance.
  • Free Cancellation: For all stays booked before December 31, 2020, Club Med clients can cancel their booking for free up to 15 days prior to departure (and 61 days instead of 91 days for stays during blackout dates). Clients will receive afull refund of the land portion and air portion of their stay if flights were booked with Air Canada, Air Transat or WestJet.
  • Safe Together: Club Med has implemented reinforced health & hygieneprotocols across resorts worldwide, to ensure that all guests can enjoy their stay with complete peace of mind. These include protective face coverings for staff, hand sanitizer available throughout the resort, deep cleaning and frequent sanitizing of surfaces and facilities, social distancing, capped resort capacity, temperature checks on arrival and periodically during the stay, doctor or nursing staff available 24/7 in the resort.
  • Emergency Assistance ProgramClub Med has enhanced its Emergency Assistance Program to provide all guests with coverage for emergency medical expenses during their stay, including those related to COVID-19. The Emergency Assistance Program covers all guests travelling before April 30, 2021.

This fall Club Med reopens its most popular North American destinations so travellers can escape the cold and enjoy sugary white sand and sun-soaked beaches, gourmet dining, and share memories that will last a lifetime.  Guests can book an unforgettable vacation at any of the following resorts:

  • Punta Cana:  Families and couples will fall in love with Punta Cana’s white-sand beaches bathed in crystalline waters. The whole family can enjoy countless activities including a variety of water games, a digital treasure hunt, family meditation and acrobatic adventures. Couples can retreat and relax in the adults-only Zen Oasis with its quiet beach, oversized lagoon pool and wellness bar.
  • Cancún Yucatan: Located at the tip of the iconic Riviera Maya, next to the world’s second largest coral reef, this resort has three beautiful beaches to choose from, as well as an array of land and water activities for families and kids of all ages. Enjoy a treatment at the lavish L’Occitane Spa before a gourmet dining experience everyone will enjoy at the resort’s beachfront restaurant, Taco Arte.
  • Michès Playa Esmeralda: With four distinct boutique villages that each have their own personalized services and immaculate beaches, discover unique experiences such as whale watching, horse-riding or stand up paddle boarding. 

About Club Med
Club Med, founded in 1950, is recognized as the pioneer of the all-inclusive market, offering more than 70 premium resorts in stunning locations around the world including North and South America, the Caribbean, Asia, Africa, Europe and the Mediterranean. Established in 26 countries across five continents, the group employs more than 23,000 employees comprised of 110 varied nationalities. Club Med has had a corporate presence in Canada for over 40 years and employs a staff of more than 50 team members in their Montreal head office.
 
For more information, visit www.ClubMed.ca or contact a preferred travel professional. For an inside look at Club Med, follow Club Med on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

October 21, 2020
Fletcher Wright Associates Inc Celebrates 50 Years
Mississauga, Ontario - In 1970, Fletcher Wright Associates Inc., then called John A. Fletcher & Associates was launched by founder John (Jack) Fletcher. Originally offering consulting services in the occupational health and safety field, in 1978 the firm began managing its first association and within three years the business focus had shifted from OHS consulting to association management.  
 
Jack Fletcher was joined by wife Margaret Fletcher in 1970, by his son Peter Fletcher in 1973, and in 1975 Jacks’ daughter Leslie Wright joined the firm full-time. It was now officially a family business and growing.  
 
After Jack’s retirement in 1989 the company name was changed to Fletcher Wright Associates Inc, to acknowledge the two principals, Peter Fletcher and Leslie Wright.  The third generation joined the firm in 1992 with the addition of Nicola (Nikki) Wright who became Leslie’s business partner when Peter retired in 2011.   
 
“Today, we’re still very much a family business,” says Leslie Wright, President. “We’ve expanded beyond family to add to other team members, but we think of all our team as part of our family. I don’t believe my dad would ever have dreamed when he started the company out of his home, that we would have expanded and grown and changed direction along the way.” 
 
“We are grateful for the opportunity to have served so many clients over the past 50 years.  Thank you to the clients, colleagues and friends who have supported our success. In lieu of a celebration, Fletcher Wright Associates Inc. has donated to the following charitable organisations in recognition of our 50th Anniversary.  
 
  • Pathways to Education operates across Canada and supports youth to overcome the barriers they face to graduate from high school.  
  • Foodbanks Canada supports a network of provincial associations, affiliated food banks and food agencies that work at the community level to relieve hunger.  
  • Indspire is an Indigenous national charity that invests in the education of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis people for the long-term benefit of these individuals, their families and communities, and Canada.  
 
To all of our clients and colleagues, thank you for supporting us over the past 50 years and for trusting us to support the achievement of your goals.  
 
ABOUT FLETCHER WRIGHT ASSOCIATES INC. – www.fw.ca 
Fletcher Wright Associates Inc. is a full-service association management company focused on delivering exceptional customer service to our clients.  
 
October 16, 2020
Copa Airlines returns to Toronto, Pearson International Airpot with connections to Latin America

Toronto, Ontario – Copa Airlines announced today that after seven months of not operating regularly, due to travel restrictions imposed by governments in the region as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the airline will resume operations from Toronto, Pearson International Airport and the Hub of the Americas® in Panama. This flight will allow to connect to the destinations that Copa is currently operating in the Americas.

As of October 17, the airline will initially operate up to three weekly flights connecting from Pearson International Airport to Panama City, Republic of Panama; Santiago, Chile*, Montevideo, Uruguay*; Brasilia, Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Bogota, Colombia; Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; Guayaquil and Quito, Ecuador; Buenos Aires, Argentina; and Lima, Peru.

"The opportunity of connecting Toronto again through our Hub of the Americas® gives us a lot of optimism. These flights will allow Copa Airlines to serve thousands of passengers who wish to return to their homes, reunite with their families, visit their favorite vacation destinations, attend to health issues, important meetings, family or professional matters," said Fernando Fondevila, Commercial Regional Manager North America, Copa Airlines. "We are committed to the economic and tourism development of the countries we operate, and we will continue to focus on gradually reestablishing the vital connectivity we offered before the pandemic."

The CM 471 flight will initially operate up to three weekly flights from Toronto, departing at 12:05 p.m. and arriving in Panama at 4:31 p.m. (local time). The return flight, CM 470 will depart PTY 6:06 p.m. arriving Toronto at 12:35 AM +1 (local time). Copa Airlines will operate this flight on a Boeing 737-800 NG with the capacity to transport 160 passengers, 16 in business class and 144 in the main cabin.

Customers who wish to travel on Copa Airlines’ flights from/to Toronto can purchase their tickets at www.copa.com or by contacting their preferred travel agency. Passengers with a valid Copa Airlines ticket purchased before September 1, 2020 may request changes without penalty charges. For tickets purchased after September 1, 2020, charges may apply.

At Copa Airlines, our main priority is the safety and well-being of our passengers and employees. As a result, we have implemented and continue to reinforce all sanitary, hygiene and biosafety measures to offer passengers a safe environment in every stage of their trip. These measures have been successfully developed by a board of medical specialists in biosafety measures, following the recommendations of the national and international health authorities.

All of our aircraft are equipped with high-efficiency (HEPA) filters that remove up to 99.97% of airborne particles, including viruses and bacteria, similar to a hospital’s operating room. In addition, the cabin air recirculation system renews the airflow every two to three minutes and the air is supplied vertically which prevents it from being shared among passengers. This, combined with the use of mandatory face masks at all times, results in a highly hygienic and safe environment.

All passengers must comply with the immigration and health requirements determined by the airline, and the Panamanian and the destination's authorities. To learn more about these measures and additional information, visit copa.com or the airlines' official social media platforms.

Copa Airlines' resuming operations in Toronto, allow the company to gradually recover its connectivity in the continent offered before the COVID-19 crisis via its Hub of the Americas® in Panama. The operations will reunite families, contribute to growing communities, and develop local businesses and the tourism industry.

*Entry to Argentina, Chile and Uruguay will only be allowed for nationals and residents that comply with the requirements determined by the local health authorities.

October 15, 2020
Meliá Hotels International Announces Hotel and Resort Reopenings Throughout The Americas

After a six-month closure, the Spanish hotel company has reopened seven properties throughout Mexico, The Caribbean and the U.S. under stringent new safety program, and has announced reopening dates for four additional resorts later this year.

MIAMI, FL - Meliá Hotels International (MHI), owner and operator of 390 hotels around the world, has announced the reopening of seven hotels and resorts in its Americas region, which includes properties in the United States, Mexico and The Caribbean. 

Included in these reopenings are Paradisus Playa del Carmen (Jul.1), Paradisus Los Cabos (Aug. 15), The Grand Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real (Oct. 1), INNSiDE New York Nomad (Oct. 2), Meliá Caribe Beach Resort (Oct. 8), Meliá Punta Cana Beach Resort (Oct. 15). Meliá Orlando Celebration, located in Celebration, Florida, reopened its doors earlier this summer on May 18.

November openings include Paradisus Cancun (Nov. 1) and Meliá Nassau Beach (Nov. 22), while ME Cabo and Meliá Braco Village will open just in time for the holidays on December 1 and December 18, respectively. 

All hotels and resorts are reopening under the “Stay Safe with Meliá” program, which MHI debuted in May. The company has partnered with Bureau Veritas, an industry leader in inspection, certification, and testing, to ensure the Meliá Hotels International system is achieving the highest standards in the management of preventative measures to combat COVID-19 in its hotels worldwide. The 390 hotels around the globe have modified their facilities and redesigned all their processes to reduce direct interaction and maintain hygiene standards and social distancing across each property. 

Check-in, check-out and concierge services will now be offered digitally only. Upon check-in, additional safety measures include temperature checks of all guests upon arrival, and offering special COVID-19 amenities kits with a mask, gloves and hydroalcoholic gel to all guests. Rooms will have limited employee contact and shared amenities kits such as dental, shaving and shoe shine will be available on request. Only essential items such as shampoo and soap will be offered in the room. Self-service buffett stations have been modified to a market-style service concept featuring pre-packaged food. Additionally, complimentary beverage stations have been removed throughout all resorts. All menus throughout the resorts will only be offered digitally, and reservations are required for all restaurants in order to enforce social distancing. 

Pool and beach chair layouts have been modified to adhere to social distancing at restaurants, and new entertainment and programming has debuted to meet the needs of social distancing. Spas now offer a reduced list of treatments and are available by appointment only.

All the above MHI resorts will open with discounted deals ranging from 35% to 50% off nightly rates and free cancellation for all reservations. Select resorts will also offer complimentary airport transfers for certain room categories, resort credits and extra MeliáRewards bonus points, and offers for kids to stay free. Rates start as low as $69 per night per person. 

Meliá Hotels International will also debut Paradisus Playa Mujeres in 2021. Located just 30 minutes from Cancún International Airport, the newly built resort will feature 498 suite-style rooms, ten premier dining options, a Greg Norman-designed golf course, signature YHI Spa, and eco-conscious, nature-inspired design. Paradisus Playa Mujeres will be the fourth Paradisus resort in Mexico and seventh in the entire brand.

About Meliá Hotels International

Founded in 1956 in Mallorca (Spain), Meliá Hotels International operates more than 390 hotels (portfolio and pipeline) throughout more than 40 countries, with brands including Gran Meliá Hotels & Resorts, Paradisus by Meliá, ME by Meliá, Meliá Hotels & Resorts, INNSiDE by Meliá, Sol by Meliá and TRYP by Wyndham. The Company is the global leader in resort hotels, while also leveraging its experience to consolidate the growing segment of the leisure-inspired urban market.

Its commitment to responsible tourism has led the Group to become the third most sustainable hotel company in the world in 2018, according to RobecoSam, the investment company to produce the Dow Jones Sustainability Index. Meliá Hotels International is also included in the IBEX 35 Spanish stock market index and it is the Spanish hotel leader in Corporate Reputation (Merco Ranking). Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin and Instagram meliahotelsinternational.com

October 07, 2020
Calgary’s largest convention venues receive industry’s only outbreak prevention, response and recovery accreditation, GBAC STAR™
Calgary TELUS Convention Centre (CTCC) and BMO Centre at Stampede Park (BMO Centre) are proud to announce both venues, in what is soon-to-be Western Canada’s largest convention destination, have achieved the Global Biorisk Advisory Council ® (GBAC) STAR™. Under the guidance of GBAC, the venues join an exclusive group of international leaders who have implemented the most stringent protocols for cleaning, disinfection and infectious disease prevention in their facilities.  
 
GBAC STAR™ helps organizations establish protocols and procedures, offers expert-led training and assesses a facility’s readiness for biorisk situations. The program verifies that CTCC and BMO Centre have implemented best practices to prepare for, respond to and recover from outbreaks and pandemics like COVID-19.
 
“We want to ensure clients are comfortable and safe hosting events in our venues and for that, we need to meet the highest standards of cleaning and disinfection,” says Kurby Court, President and CEO of CTCC. “Achieving this globally recognized industry certification is something to be proud of and the fact that two venues in our city are now accredited confirms Calgary’s commitment to be a safe destination to meet in.”
 
“From the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have worked diligently to collaborate and adapt to this new environment in order to address the increased safety precautions required for live events to return,” says Greg Newton, General Manager, BMO Centre. “Achieving GBAC accreditation is a key part of our commitment to the safety and comfort of our clients and guests, as well as getting members of our community back to work and our economy engaged.” 
 
“Having Calgary’s two largest hosting venues accredited in the highest-level of cleanliness and prevention demonstrates how diligently our destination is working to provide safety and comfort for visitors and Calgarians,” says Cindy Ady, CEO, Tourism Calgary. “The collaboration amongst partners and venues helps to ensure consistent protocols and experiences through our city, which we know is very important to both meeting and event planners and event attendees. We look forward to welcoming visitors to experience these enhancements.”
 
A safe return to meetings and events is a key factor in Calgary’s economic recovery and the GBAC STAR™ accreditation requires health and safety to be the top priority. 
 
About Calgary TELUS Convention Centre
The Calgary TELUS Convention Centre is focused on enhancing the services that we provide well beyond the venue—to create a place and experience that supports all events for people to convene, connect and converse together. What started as a central location for gathering has grown into a next generation of convention services and experiences.
 
About Calgary Stampede
The Calgary Stampede and BMO Centre at Stampede Park host more than 1,200 business, tourism, sporting, hospitality and community events every year, welcoming more than four million guests from every corner of the world. Together, these events generate over $540M annually for our community, in local hotels, restaurants, and other businesses. Exemplifying the theme, We’re Greatest Together, the Calgary Stampede is a volunteer-supported, not-for-profit community organization that preserves and celebrates our western heritage, cultures and community spirit. All revenue is reinvested into Calgary Stampede programs and facilities.
 
About Tourism Calgary
Tourism Calgary is the official destination marketing and development organization for Calgary's tourism industry. For more than 60 years, the organization’s primary purpose has been to promote Calgary and area as the destination of choice for leisure travellers. With a vision of making Calgary the ultimate host city, Tourism Calgary markets the city locally, nationally and internationally and advocates for its ongoing development as a destination. The organization hosts and attracts visitors and events and activates the city by fostering the growth of shareable, memorable experiences. Calgary’s tourism industry contributes approximately $2.5 billion in visitor spending by over 7 million visitors annually.
September 30, 2020
IACC Launches Global Solution to Multi-Location Connected Meetings

September 30, 2020  IACC CEO Mark Cooper announced the launch of IACC MultiPOD meetings. An IACC MultiPOD meeting is one meeting, with in-person groupings of participants in two or more different locations. The concept merges in-person and virtual, with one gold-star standard framework with venue brilliance at the heart of it.

The launch follows months of research to develop a framework and pledge of excellence to stage geographically diverse meetings, interconnected through strong technology platforms and collaborative venue solutions. 

IACC is passionate about driving change within the business events industry and is the first to combine a technology solution with a pledge from venues that commits to their suitability and collaborative cross-venue abilities stage meetings at the same time, anywhere in the world. 

Mark Cooper, IACC CEO comments “This has been designed to cater for the way meetings need to happen in the current climate and is underpinned by our commitment to venue excellence. Given global restrictions on travel and limits on the number of people who can gather in person, many business events will take place regionally in smaller groups. However, that does not diminish the desire for in-person live experiences and to foster cross-fertilisation of ideas across countries and continents.”

The concept came about after IACC identified three critical features of a multi-located meeting; venue capabilities, strong technology and production delivery, and collaboration between all parties. IACC MultiPOD addresses all through its design, pledge and training offered.

Sean Anderson, IACC’s Global President and SVP of Sodexo Conferencing comments “Our immediate focus is on keeping our colleagues, guests and families safe and healthy. At the same time, IACC venues around the world are banding together to help lead the industry’s recovery - and beyond. Personal contact and the closeness of face to face are powerful communication and connection tools. By creating our PODs, venues will embrace all necessary elements of physical meetings, and provide the necessary infrastructure for best-in-class hybrid solutions.  By avoiding physical barriers and infusing the power of digital, we are able to help increase attendance, improve engagement and offer a more inclusive environment.”  

There are multiple benefits for meeting planners, including potential for lower costs as a result of reduced distance travel; opportunities for live networking, as well as online networking with people further afield; avoiding the complexities of health measures for larger group gatherings; an easy multiple venue sourcing process supported by IACC and  peace of mind from using IACC endorsed hybrid technology providers.

IACC partnered with meetings architect, Mike van der Vijver of Mindmeeting, to design a benefits statement for harnessing the power of meetings and conferences taking place in two or more locations. The content, connections and collaboration were all key to an impactful event for attendees and the venues play a very important part.  Each IACC venue commits to not only having in place MultiPOD knowledgeable staff, but also to collaborate with the other venue teams, AV and production teams, making it easier for meeting professionals to manage the event. 

Mark Cooper continued: “IACC is a global community of expert venues that has always had a strong DNA for sharing ideas that matter. So, collaborating with their colleagues at the venues hosting the other PODs was a concept they can easily embrace. It may be as simple as co-ordinating the same food and drink offer across all venues, to provide continuity shared experiences for attendees, or sharing important planning related information in advance to save the meeting organiser time. It can also go much deeper if desired.” 

Partnering with PSAV and Electro-Media Design (EMD), IACC has developed a specification document and venue pledge which must be committed to by any of the 400 IACC certified venues in 25 countries wishing to host a POD meeting.  IACC, in conjunction with EMD, offers venues training and consultancy to ensure they are prepared for both MultiPOD and hybrid meeting hosting. PSAV offer a full range of production, platform and collaboration tools, adapted to each brief.   

Matt Harvey, VP Virtual & Hybrid Events at PSAV/Encore adds, “I am delighted PSAV/Encore is able to partner with IACC on this important initiative that gets the meetings industry moving again in an easy, safe and effective way.  We look forward to supporting many MultiPOD meetings with IACC as we drive the recovery of this great industry.” 

Further details can be found at the IACC MultiPOD webpage or by emailing info@iacconline.org.

 

About IACC

Founded in 1981, IACC is dedicated to representing the best meeting venues globally and is, by definition, the future of the meetings industry realised. The association brings together the brightest, most innovative minds from around the globe.  IACC elevates the meeting experience by creating a unique point of entry that is inclusive of the best-in-class meeting venues internationally.  IACC membership is a symbol of meeting excellence and exceptional connections amongst the best in the meeting industry.  This exclusiveness makes IACC’s members part of an elite group representing the most innovative, forward-thinking and results-driven meeting venues globally.  

All members meet a set of stringent Quality Standards, entitled Committed to Brilliance and agree to a Code of Ethics.  IACC includes over 400 member conference venues from Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Belgium, Denmark, England, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Scotland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, Brazil, Canada and the United States.

September 18, 2020
First Look: The New Hilton Quebec
Property Set to Reopen January 2021 Following $70M Renovation

Quebec City - Hilton Quebec is pleased to provide an early reveal of its new look and experience as it embarks on a new era of hospitality.  Nearing the completion of an over $70 million dollar renovation, the hotel is unveiling the first images of its transformation including new contemporary public areas, restaurants, event spaces and re-imagined guest rooms as they will appear when it reopens after a one year closure, January 2021.

The Hilton Quebec is one of the pre-eminent hotels in Quebec City and will have been completely re-defined as we welcome our first returning guests in January 2021.  This renovation represents the most significant investment the property has experienced as confirmed by the hotel owner, the Canadian company Innvest Hotels.   “It is with great excitement that we are rapidly approaching the re-opening of property, our investment in the Hilton Quebec highlights our continued support of this amazing hotel, their team and our confidence in the Quebec City market” says James Wolfe, Vice President Asset Management of InnVest Hotels.

"We look forward to reopening our doors and welcoming back guests, our team members and the community,” said Jean-François Lincourt, General Manager of the Hilton Quebec. “Inspired by the beautiful city of Quebec, our guest rooms and public spaces are designed to perfectly meet the needs of today's traveler, while offering an authentic Quebec local experience .”

A COMPLETE OVERHAUL
Guests of Hilton Quebec will enjoy new rooms with a modern, elegant and warm look, showcasing one of the property’s main assets: its breathtaking views.

Each room offers an incomparable view of Old Quebec, the Plaines of Abraham, the St-Lawrence river and the Laurentian mountains.

The building's infrastructure is undergoing a major makeover, including the exterior cladding that changes from concrete to a lighter and more durable aluminum. A prominent figure in the Quebec City landscape, the hotel will keep the same exterior appearance.
 
The iconic Hilton Quebec lobby, restaurant and ballroom are also undergoing a renovation that will give visitors and business delegates an impression of grandeur, warmth and authenticity. Renowned chef Simon Renaud, continues to lead the property’s food and beverage team and  is cooking up a completely new culinary experience featuring the richness of the local terroir and its seasons.

With a major investment in its digital infrastructure, Hilton Quebec will be ready to meet the needs of today's customers, particularly by hosting events in a hybrid format, for both on-site and remote participants.
 
REOPENING: A SAFE ENVIRONMENT
Guests will have peace of mind when visiting the property with Hilton’s new program, Hilton CleanStay, which delivers an industry-leading standard of cleanliness and disinfection in Hilton properties across the world. New elevated processes and Team Member training have been developed with RB, maker of Lysol and Dettol, to help Hilton Quebec guests enjoy an even cleaner and safer stay from check-in to checkout. New standards for Hilton CleanStay include a Hilton CleanStay Room Seal to indicate that a room has not been accessed since being thoroughly cleaned and disinfected, “knock and go” dropped-off room service, contactless check-in, extra disinfection on the most frequently touched spots in-room, and flexible housekeeping options.

Hilton Quebec is committed to creating event experiences that are clean, flexible, safe and socially responsible. Hilton EventReady with CleanStay provides curated solutions with creative food and beverage, thoughtful technology resources, elevated standards and practices with redesigned spaces for physical distancing, and reimagined ways to meet and gather to create a safe and comfortable environment for event planners and their attendees.

View renderings >

Video >

Virtual visit >


About Hilton Quebec
A 4-star getaway located in the heart of it all! Located steps away from Old Quebec and the main tourist attractions, Hilton Québec is well-known for its impeccable service and exceptional location. Each of the 569 rooms offers spectacular views. With the heated outdoor pool open year round, the 24h gym and a new restaurant, Hilton Quebec really is sure to please.

About Hilton
Hilton (NYSE: HLT) is a leading global hospitality company with a portfolio of 18 world-class brands comprising more than 6,200 properties with more than 983,000 rooms, in 118 countries and territories. Dedicated to fulfilling its mission to be the world’s most hospitable company, Hilton welcomed more than 3 billion guests in its 100-year history, earned a top spot on the 2019 World’s Best Workplaces list, and was named the 2019 Global Industry Leader on the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices. In 2020, Hilton CleanStay was introduced, bringing an industry-defining standard of cleanliness and disinfection to hotels worldwide. Through the award-winning guest loyalty program Hilton Honors, the 108 million members who book directly with Hilton can earn Points for hotel stays and experiences money can’t buy, plus enjoy instant benefits, including digital check-in with room selection, Digital Key, and Connected Room. Visit newsroom.hilton.com for more information, and connect with Hilton on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube.
 
About InnVest Hotels
InnVest Hotels is a private company that holds one of Canada’s largest hotel portfolios together with a 50% interest in Choice Hotels Canada Inc., one of the largest franchisors of hotels in Canada. InnVest’s portfolio currently comprises 80 hotel properties, with over 10,500 rooms, operated under internationally recognized franchise brands like Fairmont, Hilton, Hyatt, Marriott, Delta, Holiday Inn and Comfort Inn. The organization has 15 hotels across the Province of Quebec. The portfolio is well diversified across hotel accommodation categories, brands, geography and customers. For more information go to innvesthotels.com.
September 18, 2020
IBTM World 2020 Transitions to Virtual

IBTM Events today announces that IBTM World 2020 will transition to being a virtual event this year. This difficult decision has been made in close consultation with partners and is a result of the incredibly unpredictable travel restrictions that continue to be in place across the globe because of COVID-19.

“Whilst we have been planning positively for a live event in December, and we know that people want to get back to meeting face-to-face, the situation across Europe and the wider world remains very changeable. Therefore, even though the show is still some months away, we believe we have a responsibility to provide clarity to enable our partners, exhibitors, buyers and visitors to plan for the future,” said David Thompson, Event Director.

David continued: “This has been a difficult decision to take and we are very disappointed that we will not be able to bring the industry together in person in 2020 – the first year since 1988 that IBTM World will not take place as a live event. Our team and our partners in Barcelona have worked incredibly hard on IBTM World and while we are very sorry that the face-to-face event will not take place, we are confident that moving to virtual allows us to still provide a place for the global business events industry to gather and to do business.”

Commenting on the news Christoph Tessmar, Director of Barcelona Convention Bureau, said: “We are very sad that IBTM World will not take place live in Barcelona this year. We all wanted, and indeed hoped that we would be able to get back to meeting face-to-face this year, and I know this has been an incredibly difficult decision for everyone involved. We remain committed and supportive partners of IBTM World and together we very much look forward to hosting the global events industry in Barcelona next year.”

IBTM World Virtual will take place from 8 – 10 December 2020 and will incorporate one-to-one meetings between exhibitors and buyers, as well as a knowledge programme, with a range of targeted education sessions. Exhibitors and buyers will benefit from IBTM’s bespoke appointment system, matchmaking buyer’s business needs with supplier’s services to conduct efficient meetings. Further information on IBTM World Virtual will be released in the coming days.

Shane Hannam, Portfolio Director, commented: “We remain extremely grateful for the understanding and strong support from our partners and customers across our global portfolio throughout this pandemic and sincerely wish everyone a swift return to normal life soon. We are committed to Barcelona as a host city for IBTM World in 2021 and look forward to returning next year to meet with as many customers and partners in person as possible.”

For further information, visit www.ibtmworld.com

September 17, 2020
Air Canada to Make Complimentary COVID-19 Insurance Coverage Available to International Travellers

MONTREAL Air Canada today announced that it is including complimentary COVID-19 emergency medical & quarantine insurance for eligible customers booking round-trip international flights. The coverage, available for new bookings made in Canada from September 17 until October 31, 2020, inclusive, provides emergency medical and quarantine insurance designed to give customers added confidence when booking flights and travelling abroad.

"At Air Canada, we know people have personal, family and business reasons to travel. To give them greater confidence as they do so, we have engaged Manulife to offer all Canadian residents complimentary COVID-19 emergency medical & quarantine insurance when they book round-trip flights for travel outside of Canada. Combined with our industry leading airport and onboard biosafety protocols, including Air Canada CleanCare+, and our flexible rebooking policies, customers can be assured that when they book and travel with Air Canada their safety and well-being is our top priority," said Lucie Guillemette, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer at Air Canada.

The Manulife COVID-19 Emergency Medical Certificate of Insurance (the "Plan") is available for new international, round-trip bookings made in Canada between September 17 and October 31, 2020, inclusive, for travel completed by April 12, 2021. If, when abroad, customers test positive for COVID-19, the Plan will provide eligible customers coverage that includes:

  • Up to CDN $200,000 per insured for COVID-19 treatment medical expenses. 
  • Up to CDN $150 per person for quarantine costs (meals + accommodation); Up to CDN $300 per family per day up to a maximum of 14 days. 
  • Up to CDN $500 for expenses related to return home if the advisory from the Canadian government goes from Level 3 to Level 4 while at destination.

The Plan is available to all Canadian residents, subject to eligibility requirements, and is underwritten by The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company ("Manulife"), Canada's largest provider of travel insurance. It is the most extensive geographical coverage included by a Canadian airline for Canadian residents, covering every international destination Air Canada serves. For full details, including applicable terms and conditions, please see: http://www.aircanada.com/covid-19-insurance.

Air Canada also recently announced that customers booking with Air Canada Vacations will be offered COVID-19 Coverage and Assistance Plan provided by Allianz at no additional cost designed to cover emergency medical and quarantine expenses if COVID-19 is contracted while travelling. It is available to all eligible customers who book an Air Canada Vacations package for travel by April 30, 2021 to eligible destinations. For details please see aircanadavacations.com.

Air Canada has been at the forefront of the airline industry in responding to COVID-19, including being among the first carriers globally to require customer face coverings onboard and the first airline in the Americas to take customers' temperatures prior to boarding. It has introduced a comprehensive program, Air Canada CleanCare+, to apply industry leading biosafety measures at each stage of the journey. As well, to give customers flexibility, it has extended its goodwill policy so that new bookings made up to December 31, 2020 can be changed without fees for original travel up to December 31, 2021.

About Air Canada 

Air Canada is Canada's largest domestic and international airline. Canada's flag carrier is among the 20 largest airlines in the world and in 2019 served over 51 million customers. Air Canada is a founding member of Star Alliance, the world's most comprehensive air transportation network. Air Canada is the only international network carrier in North America to receive a Four-Star ranking according to independent U.K. research firm Skytrax, which also named Air Canada the 2019 Best Airline in North America. For more information, please visit: aircanada.com/media, follow Air Canada on Twitter and LinkedIn, and join Air Canada on Facebook.        

September 17, 2020
Club Med Québec Charlevoix presents new renderings of its meeting spaces

Modern and modular rooms perfect for corporate stays

TORONTO – Club Med presents renderings of its meeting spaces for the future Club Med Québec Charlevoix, the first Club Med resort in Canada and the brand's first four-season mountain resort, which will open its doors December 2021.

Fall inspiration and adjustable spaces
The design concepts for the future resort will be reminiscent of a Quebec patchwork quilt, with different wings drawing inspiration from the characteristics of each season. The corporate spaces will spotlight the quintessential Quebec fall and the bright autumnal colours the region is known for. Tints of amber and notes of red will create a modern and cozy atmosphere and complement the exquisite landscape views visible from the foyer.
 
The corporate spaces, totaling 432 m², will be divided into adaptable meeting rooms and the foyer. The meeting spaces (350 m²) will be flexible in size and can be separated into three distinct rooms depending on the number of guests. An additional private conference room (25 m²) will be available for smaller breakout meetings. The foyer (82 m²) will be the perfect space for impromptu meetings over coffee, with its beautiful natural light coming in through the large windows.

The concept was developed by Quebec City-based architectural and design firm, Lemay Michaud, also handling the full interior design of the resort. Images can be viewed here.
 
Contemporary spaces
Club Med Québec Charlevoix’s new accommodation, catering and meeting spaces take inspiration from their local surroundings, with warm interiors that feature the latest amenities and infrastructure. The package for theall-inclusive stay will include accommodation, meals throughout the day, unlimited drinks, ski lift tickets, ski lessons and additional activities.
 
“We are delighted to present new renderings of the future Club Med Québec Charlevoix. The meeting spaces have been designed to meet the needs and expectations of the corporate market,” says Jacinda Lowry, National Sales Director for Club Med Canada. “The resort’s contemporary and sleek appearance, combined with an exceptional all-inclusive hotel offer, will be a major asset in welcoming corporate groups of all sizes.” 

Safe Together
Shortly after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Club Med was one of the first players in the hotel industry to launch a strengthened health and hygiene program to limit the spread of the virus within its establishments. Under Club Med’s Safe Together program, many measures have been put in place to ensure the safety of guests and staff. Among them: wearing masks within groups, hand sanitizer available throughout the Village, deep cleaning and frequent disinfection of surfaces and equipment, social distancing, a limited number of clients, temperature control when clients arrive and periodically during the stay, and doctor or nursing staff available 24/7 in the resort.
 
As Club Med looks ahead to the launch of Québec Charlevoix in December 2021, it will continue to monitor the situation closely and apply all necessary health & safety measures to its current and future resorts.
 
About Club Med
Club Med, founded in 1950, is recognized as the pioneer of the all-inclusive market, offering more than 70 premium resorts in stunning locations around the world including North and South America, the Caribbean, Asia, Africa, Europe and the Mediterranean. Established in 26 countries across five continents, the group employs more than 23,000 employees comprised of 110 varied nationalities. Club Med has had a corporate presence in Canada for over 40 years and employs a staff of more than 50 team members in its Montréal head office.
 
In December 2021, Club Med will open its new Québec Charlevoix resort, the brand’s first in Canada and the first mountain vacation resort to welcome visitors year-round.
 
For more information, visit www.ClubMed.ca or contact your travel agent. For a behind-the-scenes view, follow Club Med on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

About Groupe Le Massif
Le Massif de Charlevoix is the brainchild of the Quebec developer Daniel Gauthier, best known for having founded the worldwide phenomenon known as Le Cirque du Soleil, one of Quebec’s greatest cultural exports.
 
As the site of Club Med’s first mountain location in North America and by virtue of a symbiotic combination of creativity, authenticity, and cultural and social sensitivity, Le Massif de Charlevoix promises bucolic backdrops, inimitable experiences, outstanding gastronomy and renowned service.
 
Started in 2002, the goal of this tremendous project is to develop sustainable tourism through deeply personal, original and environmental experiences within one of Quebec’s most beloved regions, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve since 1989.

September 04, 2020
UNITE 2020: A Global Virtual Leisure and MICE Trade show

UNITE by Saleint Inc is organizing a Global Virtual Trade Show combining the Leisure and MICE industry on an online platform. The Trade Show is scheduled to start at 0000 hrs Toronto time (EDT) on September 16, 2020 and will be live till 2359 hrs Toronto time (EDT) on September 17, 2020.

One can expect to connect with 34 Exhibitor booths who will showcase more than 39 popular destinations across 5 continents and represent an excess of 45 brands such as Air Canada, Korea Tourism Organization, Six Senses, Club Med, Fiesta Americana, Korean Air, Taj Hotels, Hyatt Hotels and Versace Dubai among several DMC’s and unique hotels. Air Canada is also the Airline Sponsor and Collaborator for UNITE 2020.

The Speaker line-up consists of IGLTA’s Vice Presidents LoAnn Halden and Clark Massad, Six Senses Regional Director of Sales for Bhutan and Thailand - Claudine Triolo, Pink Media’s Matt Skallerud and a panel moderated by TravTalk where MICE and Luxury Leisure professionals uncover the future of India outbound and more…

It is expected that 1700+ meetings will take place over the two days.

To date, there are over 500 buyers registered who would connect with Exhibitors through one-on-one video chats. A Buyer Chat room and Air Canada sponsored Buyer Lounge will be additional spaces where Buyers (attendees) can interact with one another as well as reach out for technical support.

The Grand Prize is valued at USD 3200.00 (gifted by New World Safaris) and includes 2-night stay at the One and Only Cape Town is closely followed by Club Med’s 7-night stay valued at USD 2700.00. The Exhibitors at UNITE have contributed towards prizes that exceed USD 14,000.00 in value and can be won through the Virtual Gamification with live results.

The Global Trade Show has been supported and promoted by our key Sponsors and Collaborators – Air Canada, MPAHT (Meeting Professionals Against Human Trafficking), Pink Media, The Incentivist, TravelWeek, Ignite, Travel2LATAM, Think MICE, IoD London, Web Worx Labs, Evintra, MICE Online, TravelTalk and IGLTA. Information on UNITE 2020 is available at www.saleint.ca/unite

Exhibitor registration closes on September 6. UNITE is extending a limited 3-hour pass for Travel Industry Suppliers (non-Exhibitors) to experience the various Collaboration Zones and Speaker sessions. 2-hour fee of USD 25.00 per registrant applies. Click here to register.

ABOUT UNITE BY SALEINT INC:

UNITE by Saleint Inc. is an organization created in the times when everyone and almost every industry was in a state of flux and turmoil. Represented in our logo – (collaboratively) hands holding the Earth up reflects our pillars on which UNITE has been built - Social Awareness, Collaboration, Inclusiveness, Unity, Responsible Tourism. For more information, email ambassador@saleint.ca

September 02, 2020
The ​Day of Visibility for the Live Event Community reveals #LightUpLive #EclaironsLesScenes campaign

As of today, the Day of Visibility for the Live Event Community has an event hashtag all their own. Event organizers are asking venues and landmarks across the country to light up their buildings and marquees in red on Tuesday 22 September to raise awareness for an industry that remains dark.

Early response has been overwhelming. Organizations, grassroots groups and individuals are coming together to ask and assist with illuminating landmarks in red, bringing to light the many performers, creators, technical, logistical, and management support personnel who drive a $100 billion Canadian economic engine.

The selected hashtag #LightUpLive #EclaironsLesScenes draws attention to locations that have been primarily dark for over six months due to social distancing restrictions. Live event workers are encouraged to participate using social media, and participating venues and installations can be tracked on an interactive map at the event website (https://lightuplive.ca).

“This grassroots movement has seemed to catch fire,” says Morgan Myler, co-founder of the Live Event Community group, which formed in March as a result of the cancellation of events worldwide due to COVID-19. “We started with a resource guide for workers to access critical health, financial and training opportunities when COVID-19 hit.”

According to Statistics Canada, the arts, entertainment and recreation sector lost 152,000 of 486,100 jobs between June 2019 and June 2020, and 86% of businesses experienced a high level of impact due to the decrease in demand or cancellation of services . Those that are still employed have seen a 45% reduction in hours worked . The corporate and business events sector directly employs an additional 229,000 Canadians according to a 2017 Oxford Economics3 study.

“I’m always impressed to see how quickly the event industry can respond,” says co-founder Rob Duncan “but considering how quickly the work stopped, people are really looking to do something, however symbolic it may be.”

The Day of Visibility for the Live Event Community will run Tuesday 22 September from an hour after sundown, coast to coast. Follow along at https://lightupive.ca. Live event workers looking for resources can visit https://liveeventcommunity.org.

Live Event Community Mission

It’s in our name – we were founded as a community of Live Event Workers, to support and amplify the voices of freelancers and gig workers who do not belong to a representative organization. We speak to government and advocate for essential support for event workers not covered by traditional programs such as Employment Insurance. Finally, we offer a crowd-sourced database of health, financial, industry, and training resources for Canadians. We provide a place for those in the community to help each other.

Who Are We?

Live Event Community was created on 12 March 2020 in the aftermath of mass event cancellations across North America due to COVID-19. Live event freelancers were worried that their livelihood had disappeared overnight. Four live event professionals in Toronto registered a URL, spun up a phone number and launched a social media presence on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Facebook to provide a vetted source of information available to all.

We have no funding and no membership. We do have an organic reach of 30,000 and 1,200 followers on Facebook, and a mailing list that has nearly tripled in the last week.

Our organization has a similar request to the government as many other travel, tourism and live event organizations:

  1. That the government recognizes that our industry has been devastated by the effects of COVID-19, and there is no set date for return. We were the first out and will be one the last to return.

  2. Continue financial support for live event workers until the industry is back to work.

  3. Assist companies throughout the supply chain who work to create, produce, manufacture and support an industry that will have to wait until large gatherings are safe again.

September 02, 2020
Clean, reliable and flexible - IHG® enhances ‘Meet with Confidence’ for peace-of-mind planning in an unpredictable world

As the world adapts to new expectations and plans for responsible gatherings, IHG® has enhanced its Meet with Confidence programme to provide appropriate and creative meeting and event solutions, without compromising on the experience or the flexibility that meeting planners require. 

IHG Hotels & Resorts have been delivering True Hospitality in meetings and events for decades and have meeting space available in most destinations around the globe. IHG is now combining this wealth of knowledge, with industry best-practices and the expertise behind the IHG Way of Clean, to bolster the global Meet with Confidence commitment.

Prioritising guest safety and wellbeing, while also providing flexible booking during uncertain times, Meet with Confidence means meeting planners and attendees can rest assured that meetings and events at IHG hotels worldwide* will adhere to leading cleanliness and safety practices through:

• Clutter-free event spaces configured to allow for social distancing, leveraging outdoor spaces where possible
• Tables and chairs disinfected before every meeting or event and during breaks  
• Management of attendee flow with signage and staggered breaks where possible
• Enhanced food handling and service guidelines 
• Hand sanitiser stations throughout the meeting and event space
• Technology solutions to support virtual and hybrid meetings
• Meet with Confidence checklist and pre-event inspection with the meeting planner or onsite contact 
• IHG Way of Clean - strengthened procedures throughout the hotel to redefine cleanliness and support guests’ wellbeing, from enhanced cleaning of high-touch areas to social distancing measures.

Derek DeCross, SVP, Global Sales, IHG commented: “We’re seeing a number of organisations currently, or looking forward to, holding safe and responsible meetings and events. To support this, IHG is offering meeting planners peace of mind and adaptability in these uncertain times. The Meet with Confidence programme combines a laser focus on cleanliness as well as flexibility where it’s needed most. Whether it’s for a 10-person meeting, an intimate wedding or a virtual global conference, with more than 5,900 properties in over 100 countries, our diverse family of brands provides exceptional spaces to ensure every meeting, event, or celebration is unforgettable.”

Meet with Confidence also offers maximum flexibility allowing meeting planners and group decision-makers to book with confidence. This offer, available at participating hotels, includes: 

• No Cancellation Fees
• No Attrition Fees for rooms that are not booked
• Up to a 5% rebate towards the master bill
• Short-form contract (at participating hotels)
• IHG Business Rewards points** applicable for the standard qualified bookings (Terms & Conditions apply)

The flexible Meet with Confidence booking terms apply when booking 10 to 50 rooms on peak (with or without a meeting room) at participating hotels for bookings before 31 December 2020, with meet or stay dates by 30 June 2021. More information, including the Terms & Conditions for ‘Meet with Confidence’ can be found here.

*At participating hotels in the Americas, Europe, Middle East, Africa & Asia

**IHG® Business Rewards offers meeting planners the ability to earn points when they book accommodation, meetings, or an event at participating IHG® hotels worldwide.

September 01, 2020
EMA Marketing in Canada teams up with JW Marriott Guanacaste Resort & Spa in Costa Rica

EMA Marketing is thrilled to announce that the JW Marriott Guanacaste Resort & Spa in Costa Rica has appointed Liz Akey, CMP to be their Canadian Sales & Marketing Representative to handle both the leisure and MICE markets. Pura Vida!

Also, exciting news that the JW Marriott has unveiled a NEW all- inclusive package exclusive for Canadians. The resort will be re-opening November 1st, 2020 and looking forward to hosting many Canadians.

This magnificent oceanfront resort has an outstanding location overlooking the Pacific Ocean and it offers an authentic hacienda luxury style in region of Guanacaste. The resort expands across 4,500 acres surrounded by the splendors of Costa Rican biodiversity. The walls are made of authentic stones that were handpicked from the local rivers complying with the environment. Windows and doors are made of wood coming from forest plantations and sustainable forest management. Ancient tiles of Terracotta from Italy were installed in the hallways and guestrooms.

The JW Marriott Guanacaste is proud to have the CST certificate (Certification of Sustainable Tourism) with 4 leaves which further shows our commitment to preserving the environment and ecotourism.

The resort offers 290 deluxe spacious guestrooms, 19 suites and 1 Presidential suite. Each room has a spacious private bathroom with a separate tub and stand-alone shower, private balcony or patio. High speed internet access, 32” flat screen TV, iron and iron board, bathrobe, minibar, Marriott’s new luxury bedding. Aromatherapy bathroom amenities are included as well as water bottle canister to use at our various water stations.

There are 5 restaurants ranging from Asian fusion, a genuine Guanacaste steakhouse, casual Grill and main restaurant offering Costa Rican & international cuisine. There are also 3 bars and a breathtaking infinity pool. For private group events there are eight outdoor areas.

The Spa has been rated in top five spas in Latin America. It has 18 treatment rooms with a wide menu of services and it also offers plunge pools, therapy baths and separate Men’s & Women’s Lounges. There is also a state-of- the- art fitness centre.

There are many activities to experience; nature walks on our trail circuit that feature tropical birds, wild animal watching, jogging trails, yoga class, biking, surfing, mixology class, astronomy observatory, bonfire on beach to name a few. Also, there is a Golf Course next door which offers stunning settings and challenges. It’s a par 72 course and 7,200 yards and designed by Mike Young.

For more information or to book an event at JW Marriott Guanacaste Resort & Spa please contact EMA Marketing at (416) 420-6084 or Email: liz@emamarketing.ca

The resort offers 10,000 square feet of indoor meeting space of which the largest meeting room is 5,000 square feet. There are 4 breakouts and 8 outdoor areas for events.

The JW Marriott Guanacaste Resort & Spa has taken the necessary measures to provide a safe and clean environment that aligns with the protocols with the Commitment to Clean program. Our Marriott Cleanliness Council is redefining our cleaning and safety standards. We will actively monitor and evolve our solutions to ensure the safety of our guests and associates.

The JW Marriott Guanacaste is the perfect addition to EMA Marketing’s portfolio of luxury hotels, resorts and destination management companies. Pura Vida!

September 01, 2020
Highly Anticipated Sandman Signature Hotel Opens in Saskatoon South

SASKATOON, SK - Sandman Hotel Group, Canada's fastest-growing hospitality company, is excited to announce the highly anticipated opening of their first Signature-branded hotel in Saskatchewan, Sandman Signature Saskatoon South Hotel. 

Located east of the South Saskatchewan River at 2815 Lorne Ave, Sandman Signature Saskatoon South Hotel will immediately catch your eye when driving along Circle Drive, as the hotel is well-known as Saskatoon's first six-story wood-framed building. When entering, guests will notice the ultra-modern and highly contemporary interior design as they are welcomed by a team of dedicated hospitality experts, committed to providing guests with an elegant, relaxed, and comfortable experience.

"The entire Sandman family is so excited to be part of the opening of this fabulous property in south Saskatoon.  It is our third hotel in Saskatchewan and our first Signature.  We are fully committed to the growth and success of the city and are pleased to be an ongoing supporter of Saskatoon's culture and economy.  It gives us all great pride to present this level of quality and genuinely caring service for which the prairies are so famous," said Robert Pratt, President of Sandman Hotel Group.

The hotel offers 230 spacious guest rooms and suites with upgraded room amenities, luxurious bedding, and deluxe bathrooms. Guests will soon be able to enjoy the indoor pool, whirlpool, fitness centre, and the convenience of having two well-known Canadian restaurant brands on-site: Denny's (opening September 2020) and Chop Steakhouse & Bar (opening November 2020). 

General Manager Monique Simons, and her team invite everyone to take advantage of the hotel's opening celebration rate by booking online at sandmanhotels.com to enjoy a premium guest experience at Sandman Signature Saskatoon South Hotel starting as low as $109 a night.

About Sandman Hotel Group

Sandman Hotel Group was founded in 1967 by the Gaglardi family with the opening of their first hotel in Smithers, British Columbia. Sandman now owns and operates 61 hotels in 4 countries with 56 hotels across Canada, 3 in the UK, 1 in Ireland, and 1 in Texas.

September 01, 2020
The Sutton Place Hotel Halifax Introduces a New Standard of Luxury in Downtown Halifax

HALIFAX, NS - The Sutton Place Hotel Halifax  Inspired by the breathtaking beauty of Nova Scotia and influenced by their symbiotic relationship with the Nova Centre and The Halifax Convention Centre, The Sutton Place Hotel Halifax promises unmatched modern luxury with their highly anticipated opening on September 8th, 2020.

"Our entire organization is so excited about the opening of this fabulous hotel. Our partner, Joe Ramia, has been wonderful to work with and together we have built a beautiful hotel of which all of Halifax can be proud. It combines modern elegance, gorgeous views of the harbour and Citadel Hill with the warmth of genuine Nova Scotia hospitality. We are so grateful to our team, led by General Manager, Mark Schaay for the incredible job they have done preparing for this opening under extraordinary conditions." said Robert Pratt, President, The Sutton Place Hotels.

The contemporary and elegant design of The Sutton Place Hotel Halifax takes inspiration from the luxury brand's legacy of refined European elegance, the upscale and modern charm of Argyle andGrafton Street, and the city's maritime heritage. The sophisticated and spacious lobby complete with an elegant décor of Italian marble walls and extravagant lighting is a perfect place to relax while checking-in, or before dining at the award-winning onsite restaurant, Chop Steakhouse & Bar. The harmonious dark navy and gold design hues reminiscent of nautical heritage can be found throughout the hotel, including all 262 guest rooms and suites. Guests can enjoy exceptional comfort with built-in and automated in-room amenities, spa-inspired bathrooms, and floor to ceiling windows that perfectly capture the spectacular views of downtown, The Halifax Waterfront Harbour, and historical Citadel Hill.  

Guests can enjoy the upscale fitness facilities equipped with a recoiled floor for optimal comfort and performance, and will soon be able to experience the outdoor patio oasis, which includes an outdoor hot tub and fire pits surrounded by lush soft seating creating a perfect place to relax and splendour in the panoramic views of Halifax. The Sutton Place Hotel Halifax is truly one of a kind, and our team of dedicated hospitality professionals invite you to be the first to experience this new approach to hotel luxury with our Opening Celebration Rate:

Book your reservation at suttonplace.com or call 1 866 378 8866 and stay between September 8, 2020 to January 30, 2021 and enjoy a room rate as low as $179/night, plus become a Sutton Prestige Member and receive 4 x Sutton Prestige Reward Points.

August 31, 2020
Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport Announces Launch of Safe Travels Program

Safe Travels Program is an operational program and awareness campaign designed to help passengers, staff and partners travel through Billy Bishop Airport safely and with confidence.

TORONTO - Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport (YTZ) today announced the launch of its Safe Travels Program, a comprehensive initiative developed in response to the COVID-19 global pandemic that includes operational measures and safety protocols that have been implemented to ensure a safe and healthy environment for passengers, staff and partners at Billy Bishop Airport.

Billy Bishop Airport has responded to the emergence of COVID-19 with a comprehensive health and safety program that is aligned with expert guidance and new industry best practices. Under the guidance of provincial and federal agencies such as Transport Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada, Billy Bishop Airport has worked closely with its partners to implement a number of enhancements, procedures and new infrastructure to provide a safe and healthy environment for passengers, staff and partners.

Porter Airlines and Air Canada temporarily suspended commercial airline service from Billy Bishop Airport in March 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 global pandemic. The Safe Travels Program has now been launched and will be in place when the airlines resume operations later this fall.

"The extraordinary impact of this crisis has required an equally extraordinary response on the part of the aviation industry to ensure that passengers feel confident travelling again. The Safe Travels Program encapsulates our commitment to delivering a safe experience for our passengers as well as those who work in the airport," said Gene Cabral, Executive Vice-President, PortsToronto and Billy Bishop Airport. "Billy Bishop Airport is unique in many ways: its island location, its proximity to Toronto's downtown core, its unmatched, scenic approach and award-winning passenger experience. It is also unique in that this crisis and the resulting temporary suspension of commercial airline service at Billy Bishop Airport has afforded our team the time to step back, observe and get this right. We look forward to welcoming our passengers back to an enhanced version of the Billy Bishop Airport experience they already know and love."

While Billy Bishop Airport will continue to incorporate new procedures and innovations to ensure the airport can offer a safe and healthy travel environment, the measures currently in place include:

  • Requiring that face covering/masks be worn by all airport travellers and staff at the airport; 
  • Requesting that only travellers with boarding passes and airport staff enter YTZ, with exceptions made for those requiring special assistance; 
  • Designated ambassadors at key locations throughout the airport to facilitate passenger flow, communicate occupancy limits, and answer questions; 
  • Occupancy limits implemented in close-proximity spaces such as elevators; 
  • Implementing clear physical distancing and directional signage throughout the traveller journey to provide information and guidance; 
  • Installation of Plexiglas and traffic-flow protocols at face-to-face interaction points; 
  • Touchless processing of passenger belongings and documentation to the greatest degree possible; 
  • All passenger touch points including counters and screening machines sanitized often; 
  • Enhanced cleaning procedures across all high-touch areas and in public spaces, including Foggers and Electrostatic Sprayers equipped with an all-natural, environmentally safe product that eliminates 99.99% of viruses; and,
  • Providing additional hand sanitization stations throughout the airport.

The Safe Travels Program will complement programs in place with resident airlines Porter Airlines and Air Canada and is inclusive of all airport partners including Nieuport Aviation (terminal owners/operators); Stolport (parking) as well as government agencies including CATSA (screening and security) and CBSA (border protection). 

Click here to view a video outlining the passenger experience from curb to gate. 

Click here to learn more about the Safe Travels Program. 

Flying through YTZ soon? Click here to chart your path to safe travels. 

About Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport
Offering service to more than 20 cities in Canada and the U.S., with connection opportunities to more than 80 international destinations via our airlines' networks, Billy Bishop Airport is an important international gateway and a key driver to Toronto's economy, generating more than $470 million in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) each year and supporting 4,740 jobs, including 2,080 directly associated with the airport operations. Billy Bishop Airport is renowned for its unique travel experience, efficiency and customer service and has won a series of passenger-driven awards.

About PortsToronto
For more than 100 years PortsToronto has worked with its partners at the federal, provincial and municipal levels to enhance the economic growth of the City of Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area. PortsToronto owns and operates Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, which welcomed approximately 2.8 million passengers in 2019; the Outer Harbour Marina, one of Canada's largest freshwater marinas; and, Marine Terminal 52, which provides transportation, distribution, storage and container services to businesses at the Port of Toronto. PortsToronto is committed to fostering strong, healthy and sustainable communities and has invested more than $12 million since 2009 in charitable initiatives and environmental programs that benefit communities along Toronto's waterfront and beyond. PortsToronto operates in accordance with the Canada Marine Act and is guided by a nine-member board with representation from all three levels of government.

August 27, 2020
Creativ Nation and Sheraton Laval Unveil Multimedia Studio for Hybrid Event

One of the largest production stages in the metropolitan region

MONTREAL- Facing the current crisis, the Creativ Nation team has joined forces with its long-time partner, the Sheraton Laval, to enable Quebec businesses of all sizes to bring large-scale interactive events to life for their employees, clients, partners and collaborators. To do so, they unveiled yesterday, in the presence of more than 500 participants (50 on site and 500 live from the Web), the RETHINK event.

THE STUDIO

The last few months have forced Creativ Nation and the Sheraton to reinvent themselves. The two companies have chosen to work together on hybrid events allowing both a physical and virtual presence of participants. Thus, the studio has a fully customizable 24 x 64 in stage and several screens, including an 8 x 24 screen for the presentation of virtual participants.

"It is not because physical gatherings are limited that we can no longer experience immersive and unifying events. This is why we are proud to have created one of the largest multimedia production stages in the metropolitan region in one of our most beautiful event halls in Montreal." says Pierre Jean, President and CEO of Creativ Nation.

THE RETHINK EVENT

In order to present its new studio and its many features, Creativ Nation and the Sheraton organized an event last night for their clients and partners. The event, on the theme "RETHINK", was hosted by comedian and moderator Mario Tessier, accompanied by the musical talents of singer-songwriter Frank Julien. What will tomorrow's new normal be? How can we rethink human connections? What about commitment, performance and differences? These questions arising from the current preoccupations of leaders were addressed in an elegant mix of seriousness and humour by several inspiring speakers who allowed for exchanges with participants, both on site and live from the Web. This event, which served as a promotional showcase, will subsequently be offered to companies who wish to RERHINK things and engage in discussions with experts.

RETHINK PERFORMANCE: Dr. Amir Georges Sabongui - Psychologist, specializing in stress and burnout prevention, and leadership training 

RETHINK DIFFERENCES: Marie Grégoire – Speaker, TV and radio host

RETHINK COMMITMENT: Dr. Sylvain Guimond - Expert and practitioner in the field of posture, biomechanics and sport psychology  

RETHINK CONNECTIONS: Pierre Jean, CEO Creativ Nation and Manon Goudreault, President dada agency

Click here to access videos and photos

About Creativ Nation

Creativ Nation is a Laval-based company that has been a leader in the event industry for over 35 years. Their team is passionate about creative and immersive concepts for all types of events.

About Sheraton Laval

Renowned as a hotel and business centre in the Greater Montrealarea, the Sheraton Laval evolves in an innovative and developing business context. As part of the Groupe Hôtelier Grand Château, it is an important economic player in its region and it is constantly seeking renewal opportunities.