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Current News

May 18, 2022
SITE Global: Reaching new heights in sustainability

Over 500 incentive industry professionals gathered at SITE Global Conference in Dublin this April for an outstanding event. Thirteen Chapters were recognized during the event’s opening Annual General Meeting for achieving their SITE Sustainability Certification.

Congratulations to all for their commitment and dedication to making a positive impact to protect our planet:

  • SITE Africa
  • SITE Australia & New Zealand
  • SITE Chicago
  • SITE India
  • SITE Mexico
  • SITE Poland
  • SITE Scotland
  • SITE South America
  • SITE Southwest
  • SITE Southern California
  • SITE Spain
  • SITE Thailand
  • SITE Turkey

There are now 18 Chapters that have received this very important certification, with an aim for all 27 Chapters to be certified by 2023. The SITE Sustainability committee is available to mentor and support ambassadors who take on the role to achieve the certification. It’s exciting to see the SITE sustainability community grow and share knowledge and best practices around the globe!

New sustainability chapter leadership: SITE Canada feature  
SITE Canada has created its first sustainability committee. The Chapter has a strong and mighty committee of seasoned industry members (Mary Pepe, Lee Ann Marano, Gabby Spanton, Beverly Read, Ruth Gorriz, Liz Holtby, and Gisele Robert) who want to learn more and engage with the incentive industry at this very crucial movement. There is a page on the SITE Canada website with resources, articles and new initiatives.

In celebration of Earth Day in early April, SITE Canada launched an Earth Month campaign that featured a plant-based cookbook shared with members.

The objectives of the campaign included reducing greenhouse gas emissions through food choices and aligning with the Chapter’s SDG goals (#3, Good Health and Well-Being; #13, Climate Action; #12, Responsible Consumption & Production; and #15, Life on Land).

It has been an engaging campaign, that succeeded in generating many submissions and heightening awareness of the impact our food choices have. SITE Canada is now planning a webinar with a Canadian Sommelier specializing in organic wines to educate members on how to pair selections with meals.

On Earth Day, Mary Pepe, SITE Sustainability Co-Chair, and Liz Akey, SITE Canada Ambassador, spoke on a panel at the Sustainability Events Forum (TSEF) in Toronto. It was a wonderful collaboration of MICE professionals joining to share information and learn more about food waste and how we can curb this growing issue within our businesses and personal lives. It was excellent session with professionals across Canada and other SITE members in attendance, too.

Other SITE Earth Day Activities
Other celebrations and educational seminars took place in Dublin during SITE Global Conference for Earth Day. Friday was declared a “coach-lite” day, with many participants walking to the Convention Centre Dublin instead.

Benoit Sauvage, one of SITE’s board members, also conducted an insightful sustainability session.

Two offsite excursions were held during SITE Global Conference too, one at an organic farm and another lunch at an organic restaurant. Both excursions featured with presentations by organic farmers.

Further east, Ping Liu of SITE China organized the Chapter’s first Earth Day clean-up, with members gathering pinecones in a tree-lined park in Beijing. They learned from a naturalist that pinecones take nutrients and water from the trees and ground, so removing them allows for the trees to grow larger and more robust. 

Olga Walker of SITE Scotland (and a SITE Sustainability Committee member) compiled photos and videos of their Chapter’s campaign featuring members enjoying and exploring nature in their communities.

Future actions and activities
Let’s collectively keep making a #sustainable difference in our personal lives and in our incentive programs. Ask questions, share resources, have conversations, and learn from each other.  

Every action counts! We are #StrongerTogether, SITE!

We don’t have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world.”  Howard Zinn

May 18, 2022
The Bahamas Accepts Purchase Offer for Grand Lucayan Resort, Marking the Beginning of Grand Bahama Island's Rebirth

Nassau, Bahamas—A rebirth is on the horizon for Grand Bahama Island. The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Investments & Aviation (BMOTIA) made the long-awaited announcement that an offer has been accepted for the purchase of Grand Lucayan, a beachfront resort located in the bustling city of Freeport.

Electra America Hospitality Group (EAHG), a real estate investment firm, has entered into an agreement with Lucayan Renewal Holdings to buy the resort for $100 million. The agreement is projected to be completed by summer 2022, with renovations and construction to follow. 

CEO and Principal of Electra America Hospitality Group Russell Urban said the company was very interested in the resort for many reasons, among them is the “opportunity to reinvent, renaissance, rebirth, and revive” the island of Grand Bahama. “We saw this as a very unique opportunity in a world class location to create energy and to revive a community that has been so ravaged over recent years,” he said. “So, we are very very pleased and humbled to be chosen for this amazing opportunity."

The deal is a part of an initiative called “The Return of the Grand Life to Grand Bahama,” which seeks to re-establish the destination as the vibrant entertainment hub it once was.

“The sale of Grand Lucayan is only the beginning of the revival that we are witnessing in Grand Bahama Island,” said the Honourable I. Chester Cooper, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism, Investments & Aviation. “We are committed to pumping a renewed spirit back into this special island, while bringing thousands of jobs to Bahamians.”

The reconstruction and reopening of the resort are expected to create approximately 2,000 construction jobs and 1,000 permanent jobs.

Minister for Grand Bahama the Honourable Ginger Moxey also applauded the choice of Electra America Hospitality Group as the right fit for Grand Bahama. “They recognize the role of corporate citizens, and the need for a holistic approach to enhancing communities where they do business, and appreciates the significance of this property to the people and economy of Grand Bahama,” she said. “To some, it’s just a resort... to us, it carries the memories of the glory days and the boom and bust. But it also carries hope for the future; the many opportunities for our people, and finally the realization of a clear vision for this property to catapult Grand Bahama as a preferred destination of The Bahamas.”

With nearly $300 million in renovations planned, the new-and-improved Grand Lucayan will be transformed into an environmentally sustainable luxury hotel with approximately 200 rooms and 24 villas; an upscale convention-style hotel with more than 500 rooms that will cater to meetings, groups, and incentive travellers; as well as a family-friendly resort. To become environmentally sustainable, the property will utilise solar energy, establish a recycling program, and plant a garden to supply farm-to-table dining.

Electra America Hospitality Group also plans on revitalizing the resort’s golf course by adding a country club and villas for golf aficionados. A casino, world-class bars and restaurants, as well as a variety of pools, spas, and fitness facilities are also in the works, and Bahamian art, culture, and entertainment will be infused throughout.

Construction is set to begin this summer and will be completed by 2025.

To learn more about Grand Bahama Island, please visit Bahamas.com. 

ABOUT THE BAHAMAS
The Bahamas has over 700 islands and cays, as well as 16 unique island destinations. Only 50 miles off the coast of Florida, it offers a quick and easy way for travellers to escape their everyday. The island nation also boasts world-class fishing, diving, boating, and thousands of miles of some of the Earth’s most spectacular beaches for families, couples, and adventurers to explore. See why It’s Better in The Bahamas at www.bahamas.comor on FacebookYouTube or Instagram.

PRESS INQUIRIES
Anita Johnson-Patty
Director, Global Communications
Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation
ajohnson@bahamas.com

May 17, 2022
Four Seasons Hotel Montreal is Awarded Forbes Travel Guide Ten-Star Rating and Tripadvisor's Best of the Best for 2022

Montreal/CNW/—For the second consecutive year, Four Seasons Hotel Montreal has received a Forbes Travel Guide Ten-Star rating. Recognized as the only independent, global rating system for luxury hotels, restaurants and spas, Forbes Travel Guide recently announced its 64th annual Star Award winners. Awarded both Five-Star Hotel and Five-Star Spa accreditations, Four Seasons Hotel Montreal remains the only Ten-Star property in the province of Quebec.

Forbes Travel Guide has incognito inspectors visit every property they rate with evaluations based on approximately 900 objective standards. For more than 60 years, Forbes has travelled the world to provide guests with the most reliable information on where to stay, dine and relax. The Star Rating system places emphasis on service because an experience at a hotel, restaurant, or spa goes beyond looks — how it makes guests feel is of the highest importance.

On the heels of the Forbes accolades, the downtown Montreal property has also been named one of Tripadvisor's Best of the Best for 2022 award winners. The award takes into account the quality and quantity of traveller reviews and ratings, with Travellers' Choice Best of the Best award winners among the top 1% of listings on Tripadvisor. The Best of the Best winners are decided by real travellers going, trying and sharing their experiences.

"It is an honour to maintain the title of the only Forbes Travel Guide Ten-Star property in Quebec while being named one of Tripadvisor's Best of the Best for 2022," says David Wilkie, General Manager of Four Seasons Hotel Montreal. "The guest journey is so much more than a beautiful place to stay, it's about creating memorable experiences and ensuring they feel connected to us. Without our team here at Four Seasons, prestigious achievements such as these would not be possible."

Chic and sleekly modern, Four Seasons Hotel Montreal forms the vibrant epicentre in the heart of the Golden Square Mile. The Hotel is home to MARCUS Restaurant + Terrace and MARCUS Bar + Lounge by visionary and renowned celebrity Chef Marcus Samuelsson, making it Montreal's hottest destination to dine, drink and connect. For wellness and relaxation, the all-new Guerlain Spa at Four Seasons Montreal houses eight treatment rooms, including one couples suite, a heated skylit swimming pool and a Kneipp Hydrotherapy Experience.

Four Seasons Hotel Montreal is situated directly beside Holt Renfrew Ogilvy and steps from Rue Sainte-Catherine, the city's main shopping artery with boutiques of every kind, endless exploration awaits. In the country's capital of style and culture, Four Seasons savoir-faire shines a fresh light on the city.

Please click here to learn more about the 2022 Forbes Travel Guide 64th annual Star Award Winners and here to learn more about the Travellers' Choice Best of the Best.

SOURCE Four Seasons Hotel Montreal

May 16, 2022
Marriott International Collaborates with Playa Hotels & Resorts to Bring The Luxury Collection Brand to Cap Cana

Marriott International, Inc. and Playa Hotels & Resorts (NASDAQ: PLYA, Playa), a leading owner and operator of all-inclusive resorts in Mexico and the Caribbean, today announced an agreement between Francisco Martínez, the owner of Sanctuary Cap Cana, and Marriott International to debut Marriott’s first all-inclusive extension of The Luxury Collection brand in the Dominican Republic with Sanctuary Cap Cana, a Luxury Collection Adult All-Inclusive Resort. The new resort is expected to open in summer 2022 under The Luxury Collection brand.

Nestled in the heart of the Dominican Republic, the resort is located in Cap Cana, a private enclave in Punta Cana comprised of 30,000 acres of flawless beaches. Visitors will experience a wide variety of attractions, including the “Punta Espada” golf course designed by Jack Nicklaus, a state-of-the-art marina with more than 150 slips accommodating yachts up to 150-feet, as well as an equestrian center featuring two world-class polo fields designed by Alejandro Batros.

The adults-only 325-room resort underwent a renovation in 2019 and includes five a la carte restaurants, six bars, five pools, and Sanctuary Town, the resort’s own nightlife destination. Owned by Francisco Martínez, Sanctuary Cap Cana is expected to become the first Playa managed resort under a Marriott International brand.

“We are thrilled to bring our first The Luxury Collection all-inclusive brand extension to the Dominican Republic and we are grateful to the Martínez family for developing such a unique resort,” said Laurent de Kousemaeker, Chief Development Officer, Caribbean and Latin America, Marriott International. “We are also excited for the opportunity to work with Playa Hotels & Resorts, a very reputable all-inclusive operator.”

“In our first joint venture with Marriott International, Sanctuary Cap Cana is the perfect choice for the level of style and sophistication that has made Marriott’s The Luxury Collection resorts the standard-bearer for unique, one-of-a-kind vacations," said Fernando Mulet, Executive Vice President and Chief Investment Officer, Playa Hotels & Resorts. “I would like to personally thank Mr. Martinez for his continuous trust in Playa and commitment to the success of this magnificent property.”

Marriott International entered the segment in 2019, leveraging seven of its world-renowned brands, and currently offers a portfolio of 28 all-inclusive properties,. The Luxury Collection Hotels & Resorts brand features 123 hotels globally in 41 countries and territories.

About Marriott International
Marriott International, Inc. (NASDAQ: MAR) is based in Bethesda, Maryland, USA, and encompasses a portfolio of approximately 8,000 properties under 30 leading brands spanning 139 countries and territories. Marriott operates and franchises hotels and licenses vacation ownership resorts all around the world. The company offers Marriott Bonvoy®, its highly-awarded travel program. For more information, please visit our website at www.marriott.com, and for the latest company news, visit www.marriottnewscenter.com. In addition, connect with us on Facebook and @MarriottIntl on Twitter and Instagram.

About The Luxury Collection® Hotels & Resorts
The Luxury Collection® is comprised of world-renowned hotels and resorts offering unique, authentic experiences that evoke lasting, treasured memories. For the global explorer, The Luxury Collection offers a gateway to the world's most exciting and desirable destinations. Each hotel and resort is a unique and cherished expression of its location; a portal to the destination's indigenous charms and treasures. Originated in 1906 under the CIGA® brand as a collection of Europe's most celebrated and iconic properties, today The Luxury Collection brand is a glittering ensemble of more than 120 of the world's finest hotels and resorts in more than 40 countries and territories. All of these hotels, many of them centuries old, are internationally recognized as being among the world's finest. For more information and new openings, visit theluxurycollection.com or follow TwitterInstagram and Facebook. The Luxury Collection is proud to participate in Marriott Bonvoy®, the global travel program from Marriott International. The program offers members an extraordinary portfolio of global brands, exclusive experiences on Marriott Bonvoy Moments and unparalleled benefits including free nights and Elite status recognition. To enroll for free or for more information about the program, visit marriottbonvoy.com.

About Playa Hotels & Resorts N.V.
Playa Hotels & Resorts N.V. (NASDAQ: PLYA, "Playa") is a leading owner, operator and developer of all-inclusive resorts in prime beachfront locations in popular vacation destinations in Mexico and the Caribbean. Playa owns and/or manages a total portfolio consisting of 22 resorts (8,366 rooms) located in Mexico, Jamaica, and the Dominican Republic. Playa leverages years of all-inclusive resort operating expertise and relationships with globally recognized hospitality brands to provide a best in class experience and exceptional value to its guests, while building a direct relationship to improve customer acquisition cost and drive repeat business. Playa owns and manages 15 resorts (6,004 rooms) located throughout Mexico, Jamaica and the Dominican Republic. Playa also owns two resorts in the Dominican Republic that are managed by a third party and manages five resorts on behalf of third-party owners. For more information, please visit playaresorts.com.

MEDIA CONTACTS
Alexandru Otero
Marriott International
Alexandru.Otero@marriott.com

Samantha Hardy
Playa Hotels & Resorts
Samantha.Hardy@playaresorts.com

May 12, 2022
Submissions open for Events Industry Council’s Global Awards

The Events Industry Council (EIC), the global voice of the business events industry on advocacy, research, professional recognition, and standards, has announced submissions have opened for its annual Global Awards.

The awards celebrate and honour exemplary achievements focusing on leadership at all levels within the global business events industry. This year’s categories are:

  • Hall of Leaders, recognising lifetime achievement for those that have had a legacy impact on the global business events sector
  • Social Impact Award, recognising extraordinary effort on the part of an individual or organisation in the areas of people, planet, and prosperity
  • Adaptation and Innovation Award, recognising extraordinary effort on the part of an individual or organisation in the areas of adaptation and innovation to ensure our industry’s relevance now and into the future
  • Pacesetter Award, recognising emerging leaders whose forward thinking and innovative approach has led to ground-breaking changes that are advancing the industry today 

Submissions are open until 19 June 2022, with winners announced at the Global Awards Ceremony which takes place on 10 October during IMEX America in Las Vegas (10-13 October).

Commenting on the Awards, Amy Calvert, CEO of the EIC, said: “Recognising, rewarding and celebrating the incredible leadership and achievements for our sector during the Event Industry Council’s Global Awards event is one of the highlights of the EIC’s calendar, witnessing the sense of joy and community during ceremony, in particular the recognition of the Hall of Leaders award winners who have modelled the way for others, is indeed a marquee moment. 

“Sharing the stories behind the achievements of our winners is always exceptionally inspiring and motivating and I am greatly looking forward to reading the entries and seeing how many of our peers have innovated and driven forward our industry in the past year.”

Commenting on the awards, Cathy Breden, CMP-F, CAE, CEM, 2022 Chair of the board of the Events Industry Council (EIC), said: “Over the past year I have continued to experience the passion and commitment by our peers to the business events industry as we continue on the journey of sharing the story of our purpose, and the positive impact business events has on economies and communities . The EIC Global Recognition Awards are a key annual marker for highlighting the value of strong leadership and real innovation as we build a bright future for our industry.”

The Strategic Partner for the Global Recognition Awards is Cvent.

For more information on EIC’s Awards programme, visit: https://www.eventscouncil.org/Events/2022-Global-Awards

For more information on the Events Industry Council, visit: https://www.eventscouncil.org/.

For all media enquiries, additional comment and request for interview please contact.

Becca Krug or Hollie Luxford at Davies Tanner:

Tel: +44 (0)1892 619100 / Email: EIC@DaviesTanner.com

About the Events Industry Council
The Events Industry Council’s more than 30 member organisations represent over 103,500 individuals and 19,500 firms and properties involved in the events industry. The Events Industry Council’s vision is to be the global champion for event professionals and event industry excellence. It promotes high standards and professionalism in the events industry with the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) programme and signature programme activities. The CMP credential is recognised globally as the badge of excellence in the events industry. The qualifications for certification are based on professional experience, education, and a rigorous exam. The four signature programmes – Sustainability and Social Impact, Accepted Practices Exchange (APEX), Knowledge, and Leadership – represent the key initiatives, assets, services, and products for the Events Industry Council. Learn more online at www.eventscouncil.org.

 

May 12, 2022
Toronto Business Leaders Call on Federal Government to Solve Staggering Wait Times at Toronto Pearson Airport

Toronto/CNW/—Toronto business leaders, including representatives from the Toronto Region Board of Trade, the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario, AccorHotels, and the Association of Canadian Travel Agencies, have come together to echo the Greater Toronto Airports Authority's call to the federal government to urgently address government agency issues plaguing travellers at Toronto Pearson, Canada's largest airport.

While Canada's borders may be open to fully vaccinated travellers, Canada's travel economy is far from recovered, and delays at the airport are not helping with the recovery. Following two years of uncertainty, business leaders are calling on the government to immediately address resource challenges with the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) and the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) to streamline international arrivals by eliminating legacy Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) measures and to move randomized COVID-19 testing off-airport.

As a world-class city with businesses just now emerging from the crisis of the last two years, long wait times and significant delays are the first impression for many international travellers. This is a significant obstacle to business recovery. The federal government should have planned for the return to travel, and the issues must be resolved immediately. International passengers arriving at Pearson are forced to wait up to three hours, often onboard the aircraft, during peak periods before proceeding to customs. Last week, 7,000 travellers waited longer than 90 minutes on airplanes. As the summer travel season approaches, it is expected that these wait times will only get worse. Almost 50% of all international arriving passengers, or 100,000 people, were delayed last week, a 20 per cent increase in the past two weeks. For passengers departing on a flight, wait times to clear security are also staggering, reaching as high as 75 minutes during peak departure times.

Pre-pandemic, CBSA processing at Pearson took on average 30 seconds for an arriving passenger; today, the processing can take up to four times longer. The increased processing time stems from two leftover, non-science-based pandemic relics: on-airport mandatory random COVID-19 testing for 2,000 international arriving passengers per day and duplicate health checks and questions. These two public health measures could be immediately lifted to address issues at Canada's hub airports. 

Monitoring for potential COVID-19 variants can be accomplished through proven scientific options such as community wastewater testing, which is widely supported by scientific and medical communities. Wastewater testing would provide an early warning system for incoming variants without inconveniencing travellers or placing undue stress on Canada's transportation system.  

Jan De Silva, President and CEO of Toronto Region Board of Trade said, "To solve for the long-tail economic realities faced by our visitor economy we must demonstrate to potential visitors – especially our business visitors – they can travel easily and without undo challenge to our region.  In short – we need to make this a good experience. Competing cities around the world are doing this successfully. We are painfully and inexcusably behind in Toronto.
"For this reason, we echo the GTAA and urge the federal government to take immediate action and remove legacy public health requirements to support GTA businesses and to help our city get back to normal." 

"Toronto Pearson is the gateway for international travellers visiting Toronto and continuing to other Canadian destinations. The current travel experience will have detrimental and lasting impacts on how Toronto and Canada are viewed on the international stage. As Toronto and its tourism businesses continue to struggle to find their footing, the last thing we need is another hurdle that hampers our collective recovery. We need action from the government now to avoid permanent damage to Toronto's reputation as a premier travel destination," said  Christopher Bloore, President and CEO of the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario.

"Severe passenger congestion at our country's largest airport will have lasting impacts on the City of Toronto's ability to get back to normal. Hotels are operating at a significantly lower rate than industry averages, and lengthy delays and staff shortages at the airport will exacerbate the problem. International tourism is already limited, and with major events and conventions now being scheduled to take place, we need to make sure our city has the resources and capacity to ensure they can go ahead," said Edwin Frizzell, Regional Vice President Accor Central Canada & General Manager of Fairmont Royal York at AccorHotels.

"Canada's travel industry, including travel agencies and independent travel agents, are just beginning the long road to recovery. Yet, ACTA has received reports of travellers cancelling reservations or deferring travel because of delays at government checkpoints. Pearson Airport has already made their needs clear, and today we are urging the federal government to act on them. It's time for the government to address resource shortages and remove legacy COVID-19 policies that are only slowing us down," said Wendy Paradis, President & CEO of the Association of Canadian Travel Agencies (ACTA).

SOURCE Unlock the Summer

May 11, 2022
Jumeirah Group Opens All-Villa Luxury Resort in Bali

Dubai, UAE/CNW/—Jumeirah Group has further expanded its international portfolio with the debut of its first stunning, contemporary resort in Indonesia – Jumeirah Bali.

To view the Multimedia News Release, please click: 
https://www.multivu.com/players/uk/9048351-jumeirah-group-opens-all-villa-luxury-resort-in-bali/

Located in Bali's breath-taking Uluwatu region, the resort provides an unsurpassed destination for those seeking to reconnect and find inner balance, while soaking in the island's magnificent natural surroundings.

Mr. José Silva, Chief Executive Officer of Jumeirah Group, said: "Bali is well-known for its captivating beauty and rich cultural heritage that sets it apart from the rest of the archipelagos around the world. Jumeirah Bali is a first-of-its-kind concept that embodies the spirit of the province with our unmatched hospitality, providing guests a truly unique and memorable experience to reconnect with nature."

The resort offers 123 villas in one- and two-bedroom configurations, as well as a four-bedroom Royal Water Palace, all featuring views of the Indian Ocean and lush green natural beauty of Bali. Each villa features a private pool and outdoor living area with an open pavilion. The resort also provides guests with exclusive access to a private beach.

Designed to create a seamless flow between the architecture, interior, and landscape, Jumeirah Bali blends indigenous building materials with contemporary and luxurious comfort, to transport guests to an authentic Balinese haven.

Guests can also indulge in three signature restaurants and bars overseen by Master Chef Vincent Leroux. Scheduled to open in June, AKASA Gastro Grill delivers a unique culinary experience, with resident DJ and Mixologist providing the perfect spot to relax. All-day dining spot SEGARAN offers exquisite Balinese and South-East Asian cuisine, while MAJA Sunset Pool Lounge will serve as an ideal evening spot to enjoy cocktails overlooking the vast ocean.

Jumeirah Bali will also welcome Jumeirah's award-winning Talise Spa. Currently the resort has two private treatment rooms in operation, with the full spa experience, complete with the only traditional Turkish hammam on the island, opening in July. Guests can also enjoy the spa's additional wellness facilities, which include the sauna, steam bath and Vichy shower treatments.

Guests can also choose to participate in guided meditation and Yoga classes, utilise the modern fitness centre or enjoy hiking experiences in the splendid natural surroundings. The resort also boasts stunning infinity pools and kids' club for hours of family fun.

For more information and to discover our special opening offers, please visit www.jumeirahbali.com or contact jbareservations@jumeirah.com

May 11, 2022
The First Direct Flight from Whitehorse and Yellowknife Lands at Toronto Pearson Airport

Air North, Yukon's Airline, celebrates new direct connection to Toronto, making way for new economic opportunities and travel for the Yukon and the Northwest Territories

Toronto/CNW/—Last night passengers aboard Air North, Yukon's Airline, flight number 4N823, landed at Toronto Pearson International Airport, becoming the first to enjoy Canada's first-ever scheduled direct service between Whitehorse, Yellowknife and Toronto. To mark this milestone occasion for Canadian aviation, passengers were met by a special event at Toronto Pearson International Airport, celebrating its cultural and economic significance.

The seasonal route is expected to not only expand tourism and business travel to the territories, but holds particular significance to the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation, from Old Crow, Yukon, who own 49 per cent of Air North, Yukon's Airline. As the Yukon's only community accessible exclusively by air, this route will be a necessary means for economic growth, and an important cultural and personal link. As Canadians seek to better understand each other, the flight unlocks unprecedented opportunities for more people than ever before to explore both Territories and immerse themselves in the cultures of Indigenous peoples who call the Yukon and Northwest Territories home.

To celebrate the inaugural flight, Premier of the Yukon, Sandy Silver, and the Yukon's Minister of Economic Development, Tourism and Culture Ranj Pillai, attended the Toronto Pearson Airport event along with Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation Councilor Bonnee Bingham. Attendees were treated to a special performance from the Teechik Dancers, a Vuntut Gwitchin group from Old Crow, Yukon.

"By providing direct flights between Whitehorse and Toronto, we are in turn connecting Yukon businesses to the country's biggest economic hub and creating a pathway for people around the world to visit our territory," Ranj Pillai Minister of Tourism and Culture and Economic Development. "We are thrilled Air North, Yukon's Airline is able to offer this new service and I look forward to welcoming more visitors to the Yukon and sharing the economic benefits that come with this additional air access."

"Air North, Yukon's Airline owes our success to key Indigenous and community partnerships, which have allowed us to navigate the many challenges we have encountered during the past 20 years," said Joe Sparling, President and CEO of Air North, Yukon's Airline. "We are pleased to have added Toronto to our network, ensuring residents of the Yukon's regional communities have seamless and affordable access to the rest of Canada and the world. This will broaden education, sports and cultural horizons for youth, and facilitate regional economic development. We are proud to make the North a better place to live and work."

As part of last night's celebrations Premier Sandy Silver, Minister Ranj Pillai, and Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation Councilor Brenda Bingham, spoke to the airline's history and future, noting their mutual excitement for the opportunities that grow from this new development.

The twice-weekly service from Toronto, operating via Yellowknife, is now available to book at flyairnorth.com.

About Air North, Yukon's Airline
Air North, Yukon's Airline was founded in 1977 and is 49% owned by the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation. One in 15 Yukoners have an equity or employment stake in the airline. Air North, Yukon's Airline, operates a fleet of Boeing 737 jets and ATR 42 turboprops on routes throughout Yukon and to the Northwest Territories, British Columbia, Alberta, and seasonally to Ontario. In 2020 it was the recipient of the Travellers' Choice Award for Best Airline in Canada and Best Airline (Specialty and Leisure) in North America based upon glowing reviews from its passengers.

SOURCE Air North, Yukon's Airline

May 10, 2022
Meliá Punta Cana Beach Resort Transforms into Fully Immersive Wellness Property

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic—Meliá Punta Cana Beach Resort, the adults-only, all-inclusive resort by Meliá Hotels International, today announced it is transforming into a fully immersive wellness property with new amenities and services to elevate its “Wellbeing 360 Experience.” Its 360 wellness platform, a first-of-its-kind in Punta Cana, is a collection of activities and rituals designed to connect guests with their physical, mental, spiritual, emotional, social, and environmental development through the resort's five wellness spaces: Social, Silent, Sensory, Culinary and Personal. Now, this wellness experience will be boosted with new daily programming, revamped social areas, and refreshed culinary offerings.

Among the enhancements is a new series of themed monthly wellness retreats, including a culinary theme in July, where guests will focus on healthy eating and detox programs, and an immersive water theme in August, where all fitness activities will take place surrounded by water. Additionally, to commemorate the International Day of Yoga, June 21, the resort has partnered with the world-renowned Isha Foundation, an international nonprofit organization dedicated to human well-being, for a weekend retreat. From June 19-22, Chris Lukose, Doctor in Pharmacy, certified Hatha Yoga trainer and Isha Foundation volunteer will lead complimentary yoga sessions for guests, designed by the foundation’s founder and yoga visionary Sadhguru.

Meliá Punta Cana Beach’s extensive new wellness experience will also include six new wellness experts as part of the resort’s weekly wellness program. Wellness Experts will guide guests on a journey of relaxation, through special wellness activities including, mud cleansing, holistic therapy, sound healing, ayurvedic cooking, juicing detox programs, Taino rituals, and active fitness classes. These facilitated activities are an addition to the resort’s current offerings of healthy activities without the guidance of an expert, including yoga, meditation, bike tours, garden workshops, and a new challenging obstacle course.

“Now, more than ever, guests are seeking a fully immersive wellness experience, enriching the mind, body, and soul, so we are excited to expand our unique Wellbeing 360 Experience to meet this demand, “said Derryl D’costa, Hotel Manager, Meliá Punta Cana Beach. “By transforming into an immersive wellness property, Meliá Punta Cana Beach, a Wellness Inclusive Resort, truly differentiates itself in the Caribbean and we believe those visitors to the Dominican Republic seeking to unlock total well-being will find no other wellness experience quite like it.” 

The resort is also enhancing its culinary experiences with superfood workshops and revamped menus that have been curated by local nutritionists to offer healthy options for any diet. Guests of The Level, Meliá Punta Cana Beach Resorts’ upgrade service, will also experience a revamped Quimera Rooftop Bar. The exclusive The Level rooftop bar has been transformed into a health bar, serving freshly made juices and cleansing shots. 

Along with exclusive access to Quimera Rooftop Bar and Restaurant, guests of The Level upgrade will continue engaging in a deeper wellness experience with private The Level Wellness Suites by Stay Well™ that include one spa treatment per day per person, a personal wellness concierge, and private pool spaces. The resort has also expanded its amenities for this signature upgrade with additional complimentary bicycles that encourage exploration of the resort’s grounds. Other Stay Well™ amenities of The Level Wellness Suites include a welcome and guided meditation from American author and wellness advocate Dr. Deepak Chopra, mood-enhancing aromatherapy, dawn simulation to wake you gradually and gently, and a shower infuser that reduces chlorine to leave hair and skin feeling softer and smoother.

Through curated design, the resort has also transformed elements of its silent spaces to create a more serene atmosphere. These additions offer guests opportunities to engage in sound healing, spiritual rituals, painting, and reading with improvements to outdoor and indoor meditation spaces. Sensory spaces have also been revamped throughout the resort’s architecture, through the elements of sound and smell. Instrumental windchimes, relaxing music, and the burning of incense greet visitors, indicating a sense of arrival and relaxation. As guests wander the resort, they can discover various meditation spots, and pick up helpful tips on all things health and wellness.

Guest communications and daily messaging have also found improvements through the Meliá App. Convenient and easy to use, the app displays daily programming that allows guests to create personalized itineraries. 

Nightly rates at Meliá Punta Cana Beach start at $219 per night while The Level Wellness Suites by StayWell™ rates start at $300 per night.  For more information, visit www.melia.com or call 1-809-221-1290.

About Meliá Hotels & Resorts
Meliá Hotels & Resorts is the best-known international brand in the portfolio of the Meliá Hotels International company; it has more than 100 city and resort hotels in the main leisure and business destinations of Europe, Asia, Africa, and America. The brand offers exemplary meetings and events facilities in all important business cities as well as in exotic locations, catering to the ever-expanding conference and incentive travel market. As part of its innovation philosophy and new positioning, Meliá Hotels & Resorts has reinvented itself to cater to every aspect of the guests’ wellbeing. Unique experiences are created for guests and are defined by relaxation, quality time, and personalized services. For a balanced lifestyle, Meliá Hotels & Resorts instinctively understand the guests’ needs and lifestyle expectations, which is an integral part of its redefined identity. Follow Meliá Hotels & Resorts on Twitter @MeliaHtlResorts, Facebook @Melia.Hotels, and Instagram @meliahtlresorts. www.melia.com.

About Meliá Hotels International
Founded in 1956 in Mallorca (Spain), Meliá Hotels International operates more than 380 hotels (portfolio and pipeline) throughout more than 40 countries, under the brands Gran Meliá Hotels & Resorts, Paradisus by Meliá, ME by Meliá, Meliá Hotels & Resorts, The Meliá Collection, INNSiDE by Meliá and Sol by Meliá, plus a wide portfolio of affiliated hotels under the “Affiliated by Meliá” network. The Group is one of the leading companies in resort hotels worldwide, 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 most sustainable hotel company in Spain and Europe, according to the last S&P Global Corporate Sustainability Assessment (Silver Class 2022). It also has ranked seventh in the Wall Street Journal's list of the 100 most sustainably managed companies in the world (and the leading travel company) and is the only Spanish travel company included in the list of “Europe’s Climate Leaders 2021” by Financial Times. Meliá Hotels International is also included in the IBEX 35 Spanish stock market.  For more information, visit www.meliahotelsinternational.com

May 10, 2022
The Québec City Convention Centre CEO Appointed Member of the CC of C Board of Directors

Mr. Pierre-Michel Bouchard, CEO of the Québec City Convention Centre, has been appointed to the Board of Directors of Convention Centres of Canada.

Convention Centres of Canada (CC of C) is an association of some twenty major Canadian convention centres. The Québec City Convention Centre has been a member of the association since its very beginning. Some of its representatives regularly participate in the various activities organized, including the annual convention.

These networking activities promote exchanges between peers and allow the identification of trends and challenges facing the convention and business events industry. The exchanges since March 2020 were obviously very positive in this unique period that convention centres across Canada have had to go through.

Mr. Bouchard has dedicated himself for many years to promoting the Québec City destination and the Québec City Convention Centre, both in Canada and internationally. His expertise and skills will advance the reputation and business opportunities of member convention centres.

Click here to learn more about CC of C.

May 10, 2022
The MICHELIN Guide makes reservations in Toronto

Toronto/CNW/—Michelin and Destination Toronto today revealed an expansion of The MICHELIN Guide, with the announcement of the MICHELIN Guide Toronto, making it the first Canadian destination for the selection.

A new chapter begins in Toronto, which features global eats and charming cafes as well as high-end dining experiences. It's a city where top chefs want to establish a presence and where emerging chefs nurture their culinary talent – both drawing on locally produced ingredients unique to Ontario.

The inaugural edition of the MICHELIN Guide Toronto will be announced in fall 2022, with a selection of restaurants receiving honours. Inspectors award MICHELIN Stars – One, Two or Three – to unparalleled cuisine. They also bestow Bib Gourmand ratings on restaurants that offer great quality food at good prices, and they award the MICHELIN Green Star to restaurants involved in sustainable gastronomy.

"For the first time in its history, the MICHELIN Guide lands in Canada, and our inspectors are excited to experience the impressive culinary landscape of Toronto," said Gwendal Poullennec, international director of the MICHELIN Guides. "This first selection for Canada's largest city, and our first in the country, will represent the local flavours, international inspiration, and distinct creativity that makes Toronto's dining scene world-class."

In order to present a full and independent selection in the fall, Michelin inspectors already have begun visiting restaurants in Toronto. They will continue during the next few months. Michelin inspectors are meticulous in maintaining their anonymity. They make dining reservations anonymously and pay for all their meals to ensure they are treated the same as any other customer.

"This is an exciting moment for our city as Toronto will become the first MICHELIN Guide destination in Canada," said Mayor John Tory. "This further bolsters our reputation as a world destination for food and cuisine. Our diverse city, along with the many renowned chefs who call Toronto home, have helped us get to this point and to be able to showcase all of the wonderful restaurants. A big thank you to everyone who has made this possible: MICHELIN, Destination Toronto, Destination Ontario and Destination Canada. While we await the guide, I encourage Toronto residents to continue supporting and celebrating the revival of Toronto restaurants by dining in locally to sample the diverse culinary offerings our restaurants have to offer."

"Toronto's culinary scene is as diverse as the city itself, and the MICHELIN Guide Toronto is the perfect way to celebrate our culinary community," said Scott Beck, President & CEO of Destination Toronto. "It will be a powerful way to share our culinary capabilities with new audiences from around the world. We're so proud to partner with Michelin and our destination partners Destination Ontario and Destination Canada, to bring the MICHELIN Guide to Canada for the first time."

The MICHELIN Guide is constantly observing the evolution of culinary destinations around the world, and the discovery process began in Toronto four years ago. Michelin works with Destination Marketing Organizations, or tourism boards, to promote the travel industry in the respective locations; however, the MICHELIN Guide selections process remains completely independent. While selections remain fully independently determined by Michelin inspectors, Michelin is working with Destination Toronto on marketing and promotion activities only.

The upcoming MICHELIN Guide Toronto selection will follow Michelin's historical methodology, based on five universal criteria, to ensure each destination's selection equity: 1) quality products; 2) the mastery of flavours; 3) the mastery of cooking techniques; 4) the personality of the chef in the cuisine; 5) consistency between each visit (each restaurant is inspected several times a year).

The new restaurant selections will join Michelin's selection of extraordinary hotels in Toronto, curated by Tablet Hotels, the hotel experts at the MICHELIN Guide.

Michelin in Canada
Michelin opened its first North American tire production facilities in Canada in 1971 in Bridgewater and Pictou County, Nova Scotia. It's now a major contributor to the Canadian economy in the field of sustainable mobility, with activities in the tire sector but also around and beyond tires. The company currently employs around 4,000 people in Canada.

About Michelin North America, Inc.
Michelin, the leading mobility company, is working with tires, around tires and beyond tires to enable Motion for Life. Dedicated to enhancing its clients' mobility and sustainability, Michelin designs and distributes the most suitable tires, services and solutions for its customers' needs. Michelin provides digital services, maps and guides to help enrich trips and travels and make them unique experiences. Bringing its expertise to new markets, the company is investing in high-technology materials, 3D printing and hydrogen, to serve a wide variety of industries—from aerospace to biotech. Headquartered in Greenville, South Carolina, Michelin North America has approximately 22,500 employees and operates 34 production facilities in the United States and Canada. (michelinman.com)

About Destination Toronto
Toronto's visitor economy is a vital economic engine for the city, generating more than $10 billion in economic activity and supporting 70,000 jobs in 2019. Destination Toronto's mandate is to reflect the breadth and diversity of Toronto's people, places and culture to inspire residents and visitors to meet, visit and explore our city. Operating in partnership with the City of Toronto, the Greater Toronto Hotel Association and the Ontario Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries, Destination Toronto markets and promotes the city to locals and visitors, attracts and supports major meetings and events, and supports local businesses to maximize the opportunities of visitor spending. For more information, please visit DestinationToronto.com.

SOURCE Michelin North America Inc.

May 10, 2022
Ridership increases as VIA Rail implements recovery plan and meets key modernization milestones in 2021

Montreal/CNW/—Despite challenges in 2021 stemming from the global pandemic, VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) continued to connect communities and to deliver on its mandate of operating the national passenger rail service. At the same time the Corporation moved forward with key elements of its modernization program aimed at creating the VIA Rail of the future. 

VIA Rail achieved its goal of staying on budget within the funding allocated to the Corporation by the Government of Canada benefitting from an increase of 31.9% in ridership and of 54.3% in passenger revenues compared to 2020.  

"Despite the upheaval caused by the pandemic, we have successfully pursued our strategic plan, including the unveiling of our new fleet and the advancement of the High Frequency Rail project," said Françoise Bertrand, Chairperson of the Board of Directors. "On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to thank the Government of Canada for its confidence and openness toward VIA Rail this year, as we share a common belief in the future of passenger rail. It's time to transform passenger rail service in Canada and we are excited about the progress we have made in 2021."

It's Time to get back on track
Last year VIA Rail continuously adapted its schedule and services based on the evolution of the pandemic. VIA Rail followed the guidance and recommendations of public health authorities which included the adoption and enforcement of a mask policy, pre-boarding health checks, and the implementation of a mandatory vaccination policy in line with Transport Canada regulations.

Over the course of the year VIA Rail moved forward with its gradual service resumption plan, employing a balanced approach to fulfill its important public service mandate while proactively managing financial impacts.

"The agility, resilience and professionalism of the VIA Rail team from coast to coast when adapting our operations are the reasons why we continued to deliver the exemplary service VIA Rail is known for," said Cynthia Garneau, President and Chief Executive Officer. "More than ever in 2021, VIA Rail's success was driven by its employees, who proudly make VIA Rail welcoming and memorable to millions of passengers, and I would like to thank them for their continued dedication."

In 2022, VIA Rail is moving forward with its gradual service recovery, remaining focused on its mandate of operating Canada's national passenger rail service which includes offering intercity rail services and ensuring rail transportation services to regional and remote communities.

It's Time to create the VIA Rail of the future
Modernization program

As demand for sustainable mobility grows, the relevance of passenger rail is stronger than ever.  From the new Corridor fleet - which will offer an unparalleled, fully accessible, and barrier-free travel experience - to the new reservation system, VIA Rail is proud to have hit in 2021 many major milestones of our modernization path despite pandemic-related adversity.

The first trainset of the new Québec City-Windsor corridor fleet was delivered on time and on budget for testing and was unveiled at a ceremony at our Ottawa Station in November. Furthermore, headway was made on both the Heritage Program and the new reservation system which will provide passengers with a more seamless, convenient, autonomous, and personalized experience before, during and after their journey. Finally, the federal government announced last July that the first steps are being taken in preparing for the procurement process of the High Frequency Rail (HFR) project.

Sustainability

VIA Rail has for years embraced its commitment to environmental stewardship, social responsibility, and good corporate governance. The Corporation has made considerable progress on many fronts, including reducing greenhouse gas emissions, supporting communities, and promoting equity, diversity, and inclusion. Building on these foundations, sustainability continues to be a cornerstone of the Corporation's values and commitment to deliver a more modern and sustainable transportation network.

In 2020, VIA Rail reviewed its policies, practices, and sustainability priorities to inform the development of a five-year sustainability plan which progressed steadily in 2021, and which will embed environmental, social and governance performance in all VIA Rail's operations.

"Our Sustainability Plan is a robust and future-oriented plan to reduce our environmental footprint, enhance our role as a responsible transportation provider, and create lasting value for current and future generations," concludes Cynthia Garneau. "As the national passenger rail service, we aspire to positively impact the lives of those around us. This plan will help ensure that VIA Rail is a driver of change for a more sustainable transportation network in Canada."

VIA Rail's 2021 annual report is available at: https://media.viarail.ca/sites/default/files/publications/Annual_report_2021_EN.pdf

About VIA Rail 
As Canada's national passenger rail service, VIA Rail (viarail.ca) and all its employees are mandated to provide safe, efficient and economical passenger transportation service, in both official languages of our country. VIA Rail operates intercity, regional, and transcontinental trains linking over 400 communities across Canada, and about 180 more communities through intermodal partnerships, and safely transported over 5 million passengers in 2019. The Corporation has been awarded nine Safety Awards and three Environment Awards by the Railway Association of Canada since 2005. To learn more, visit the "About VIA Rail" section.

Suivre VIA Rail
Twitter : @VIA_rail
Facebook : viarailcanada
Instagram : @viarailcanada
VIA : le blogue

SOURCE VIA Rail Canada Inc.

May 05, 2022
The Guerlain Spa at Four Seasons Montreal is Now Open

Four Seasons Hotel Montreal Partners with LVMH brand Guerlain to Unveil all-new Spa

Montreal/CNW/—Bringing an entirely new beauty and wellness experience to the city, Four Seasons Hotel Montreal is unveiling the all-new Guerlain Spa. Now open to the public, Quebec's only Forbes Ten-Star Hotel and Spa have further amplified its offerings after announcing its partnership with LVMH brand Guerlain. The addition of the Guerlain Spa continues to position the epicentre of the Golden Square Mile as an urban destination guaranteeing innovative and unparalleled experiences.

"At Four Seasons we're adamant about arranging personalized and unforgettable guest journeys," says David Wilkie, General Manager, Four Seasons Hotel Montreal. "Aligning with a brand that has the same vision as ours was of the utmost importance. Guerlain curates every treatment in harmony with the surrounding city it resides in, and we look forward to showcasing Montreal's unique personality with our new Spa."

After undergoing soft decor and design enhancements, the Spa's eight treatment rooms, including one couple's suite, serve as a tranquil sanctuary providing an escape from the city. Offering an array of results-driven body treatments, facials and massage services using advanced performance products, the Guerlain Spa champions essential moments of self-indulgence. Collaborating with global specialists to continually fine-tune their techniques, every Guerlain treatment has been developed to achieve extraordinary levels of sophisticated personalization. Whether guests are seeking revolutionary anti-ageing facials promising renewed skin and immediate results, or meditative massages vowing a rebirth of one's body and mind, the robust Spa menu ensures every guest has something that fits their needs and desires.

"The Spa has always catered to the needs of our guests, but we will forever look to elevate their experience and by partnering with Guerlain, we were able to do just that," says Stephanie Cherbakow Baron, Director of Spa, Four Seasons Hotel Montreal. "We are excited to welcome back familiar faces and introduce new guests to our team of talented practitioners that continuously raise the standard for exceptionally high-quality service and hospitality."

Located on the lower level of Four Seasons Hotel Montreal, the Guerlain Spa at Four Seasons Montreal will be open daily from 11:00 AM to 7:00 PM. For those looking to arrange a personalized Spa experience, please call +1 (514) 843-2700, or click here to book a treatment.

Click here to receive all news and happenings from the Guerlain Spa at Four Seasons Montreal.

SOURCE Four Seasons Hotel Montreal

May 03, 2022
Events Industry Council Announces First Online SEPC Cohort

The Events Industry Council (EIC), the global voice of the business events, has today announced its inaugural digital cohort of the Sustainable Event Professional Certificate (SEPC).

The SEPC, which was initially introduced as an in-person course, was updated and expanded in June 2021 to offer an online option meaning that it continued to be easily accessible for professionals throughout the pandemic. The online course also enables a greater number of professionals to participate no matter where in the world they are based. In its inaugural group, 126 professionals earned their SEPC certificate through the online course.

The course, which was developed by a global group of industry experts, covers 16 different modules, which include understanding the business value of sustainability, improving environmental performance of meetings and events, and effective methods for achieving corporate social impact goals.

As an additional incentive, professionals who complete the SEPC course will receive 12 hours of Continuing Education (CE) credits toward their Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) application or recertification. EIC is also an approved provider of CAE continuing education and professionals who earn the SEPC certificate will be eligible for 12 CAE credits. 

Amy Calvert, CEO, Events Industry Council said: “The events industry is critical for the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, as we foster the connections needed to innovate, collaborate and accelerate action for the goals. I am proud of the hard work and determination displayed by the first digital group of SEPC professionals, who represent global and diverse sector experience, and cannot wait to see how they apply what they have gained from the course to support their organisations and our industry in becoming more sustainable.”

For more information on the SEPC programme visit: www.eventscouncil.org/Sustainability/SEPC

Details of the first SEPC digital cohort can be found here.

 

About the Events Industry Council

The Events Industry Council’s more than 30 member organisations represent over 103,500 individuals and 19,500 firms and properties involved in the events industry. The Events Industry Council’s vision is to be the global champion for event professionals and event industry excellence. It promotes high standards and professionalism in the events industry with the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) programme and signature programme activities. The CMP credential is recognised globally as the badge of excellence in the events industry. The qualifications for certification are based on professional experience, education, and a rigorous exam. The four signature programmes – Sustainability and Social Impact, Accepted Practices Exchange (APEX), Knowledge, and Leadership – represent the key initiatives, assets, services, and products for the Events Industry Council. Learn more online at www.eventscouncil.org.

 

May 02, 2022
Don’t know these GenZ TikTok slang phrases? Looks like you need a vibe check!

Have you heard people talking about things living "rent-free" in their heads? Or maybe you've wondered what an "ick" is, and why people hate them so much. And why are people suddenly interested in finding out what the "tea" is?

A new era of internet slang is upon us, which is mostly being adopted by GenZ on TikTok. Calling someone or something ‘basic’ is a thing of the past, now things are ‘cheugy’, ‘sus’ or ‘salty’. 

To help you better understand the new generation of TikTok slang, the language experts at Preplyhave delved into the meaning behind them, so you can be up to speed with all the GenZ lingo, and hopefully pass the vibe check.

1. Cheugy

‘Cheugy’, pronounced ‘chew-gee’, is often used by GenZ to describe ‘untrendy’ millennials who have an out-of–touch aesthetic, or are trying too hard. Like many slang words, it can be difficult to define but easy to identify as it is quite a vague term that is open to interpretation, but that’s what makes it so appealing to the youth of TikTok.

Things that have been described as ‘cheugy’ include; being obsessed with The Office or Friends, ugg boots/slippers, using the Instagram caption “we did a thing” to boast about an accomplishment, Minion memes, and the ‘girlboss’ aesthetic.

How to use the phrase; “Do you still own a pair of skinny jeans? They’re so cheugy!”

2. “Ok Boomer”

Another intergenerational viral slang term, “ok Boomer” is a phrase that can be used as an expression of frustration, or a way to end a debate. It refers to differing values between Gen Z and Baby Boomers who may be thought to have out-of-touch or close-minded opinions.

Essentially, the phrase means “keep your opinions, I can’t be bothered to argue.” - ouch.

How to use the phrase; “I really got into it with my older cousin, who kept telling me to start a budgeting spreadsheet, at which point I was like ‘Ok Boomer!’ and walked away.”

3. Tea

The term “tea” on TikTok usually isn’t referring to the hot beverage, but instead some hot gossip. “Tea” can be sipped, served, or spilled depending on whether someone is simply enjoying some gossip, or spreading it. 

It’s thought the term originates from the idea of a group of old ladies or housewives drinking tea whilst sharing the neighbourhood chitchat.

How to use the phrase; “I’ve missed so much over the weekend, what’s the tea?”

4. Rent free

This viral phrase is most often used when you can’t stop thinking about someone or something, whether it's a song, a person or a funny moment in a movie or TV show. The moment is residing in your mind, whether you like it or not, as if it was somebody living in your property without even paying rent for the space. 

How to use the phrase; “Harry Styles’ new music video for “As it Was” is living in my head rent free.”

5. Ick

The word ‘ick’ is used to express disgust and is often used by GenZ to describe something someone does that is an instant turn-off, making you want to cut all romantic ties immediately.

People have revealed some of their biggest ‘icks’ on TikTok and it seems no one is safe anymore. Things as simple as running to catch the bus while wearing a backpack or holding your nose before going underwater in the swimming pool have been described as an ‘ick’ - so watch out! 

How to use the phrase; “They arrived on an electric scooter and it gave me the ick.

6. Sus

‘Sus’ is a slang word that is short for ‘suspicious’ or ‘suspect’, and gives the impression that someone or something is questionable or dishonest and shouldn’t be trusted.

How to use the phrase; “you’ve been acting quite sus recently, I think you’re up to something.”

7. Salty

Describing something as salty doesn’t just refer to your food being over seasoned. The slang word ‘salty’ is often used on TikTok in relation to bitter behaviour. If someone is being ‘salty’ they are probably upset about something of small significance.

How to use the phrase; “They’re just salty because they lost a game of Fortnite.”

8. Cap

‘Cap’ is slang for ‘lie’. The phrase ‘no cap’ means “no lie” or “for real”. The term ‘capper’ is used to describe someone who might be lying and ‘capping’ is slang for ‘lying’ or ‘faking’. 

The terms were originally coined by rappers such as Young Thug, 21 Savage, Future and Offset, but have been adopted by GenZ on TikTok.

How to use the phrase; “This whole outfit is vintage, no cap!” 

9. Vibe check

A vibe check refers to checking in on someone’s behaviour and assessing what vibe they’re giving. Good vibe? They passed the vibe check!

If someone is acting suspiciously or acting up in a negative way, it sounds like they don’t pass the vibe check.

How to use the phrase; “I can’t believe they said that, they need a vibe check!”

10. Ate that / left no crumbs

The viral phrase ‘ate that’ essentially means someone did a good job at something, such as performing a TikTok dance perfectly or doing their makeup flawlessly. This is interchangeable with the phrase ‘left no crumbs’ which suggests someone ‘ate it all’.

How to use the phrase; “Did you see their new TikTok dance? They ate that!”

Credit: https://preply.com/ 

May 02, 2022
Hosts Global expands Hosts Texas to include Dallas-Fort Worth

You know the saying, everything is BIGGER in Texas… and Hosts Texas is expanding to include Dallas-Fort Worth for all your event needs. Invite your group to don their best cowboy boots and discover a wealth of unique experiences with the local experts, Hosts Texas. Dallas has so many things to do for your next BIG Adventure, this city is bursting with live sports, mouthwatering culinary experiences, a flourishing arts scene, and thrilling live music. The Dallas dining scene has something for every palate. Whether you want the bold Texas flavor of smoked brisket or perhaps a crisp summer salad, Dallas chefs and restaurateurs make your dining decision a BIG one. 

“We are thrilled to expand our Hosts Texas footprint to now include Dallas-Fort Worth, in addition to our operations in San Antonio and Austin. Dallas lives up to its big personality. With so much to offer clients from venues, entertainment, transportation, and cuisine- adding Dallas-Ft. Worth was a natural move for Hosts as we continue to see increased demand for this world-class destination.” said Kurt Paben, Chief Executive Officer for Hosts Global.

Hosts Global offers over 300 destinations around the world to partner with you to create meaningful and memorable events.

To learn more about Dallas and other Hosts’ destinations visit: https://hosts-global.com/destinations/ 

April 28, 2022
An Investment of Over $20 MILLION—The Sheraton Laval now one of the most innovative hotels following major renovations and a fully redesigned convention center

Laval, QC/CNW Telbec/ - After more than two years of hard work, Groupe Hôtelier Grand Château has revealed the brand new Sheraton Laval and a completely redesigned convention center. From the hotel exterior and convention center to the restaurant and common areas, everything has been revamped to meet the needs of today's business and tourist clienteles. As the first Marriott in the Laval region, the Sheraton is positioning itself as a leader in hotel trends.

Innovative convention center
Home to one of the largest convention centers in Quebec, the Sheraton now offers 45,000 square feet of space entirely dedicated to corporate events. For conference organizers, the possibilities are endless for the room configuration. Indeed, 22,000 sq. ft. of surface are fully modular, with removable glass partitions and mechanical walls that can be arranged based on the needs of the event. For conference organizers, the possibilities are endless as it's possible to have up to eight multi-purpose rooms, which can be configured 70 different ways.

With direct access to the outdoor terrace, the new La Lavalloise room allows events to be held both indoors and outdoors. Bathed in natural light, it is an ideal space for events or conventions of any kind. The multimedia tools have also been upgraded including the sound and lighting options. With a space comparable to a blank canvas and new technology, all that remains is to push the limits of events to create unforgettable memories.

Unparalleled dining experience
The new Comptoir Gourmand La Spesa takes on-the-go dining to the next level, serving up delicious coffee, gourmet sandwiches, and fresh salads around the clock to satisfy every craving. The convention coffee breaks are now more flexible with this new facility, giving guests the change of atmosphere to relax between sessions. The menu features a wide selection of goodies satisfy every inclination, and even includes items for those with food allergies and dietary restrictions. With La Spesa, organizers can offer participants more flexible food options. This convenient and welcoming space is also well appreciated by customers and visitors to the hotel on a daily basis.

At La Piazza restaurant, the new décor is simply spectacular! The glass-enclosed wine cellar is also highly impressive. Guests will have a memorable experience with Chef Eric Robidoux's delicious Italian and Mediterranean-inspired menu, and a cocktail list created on site by our mixologist.

About Groupe Hôtelier Grand Château:
GHGC has owned and managed two acclaimed hotels in the Laval area and a prestigious golf course for over 25 years. As leaders in the region, these hotels operate an innovative and evolving business with more than 500 employees.

SOURCE Groupe Hôtelier Grand Château

For further information: Media relations: Karine Vézina, Senior Account Executive, karine@bicom.ca, 514-827-7748

April 26, 2022
The Hazelton Hotel Achieves a Five-Star Rating in Forbes Travel Guide's 2022 Star Awards

The Hazelton is the First and Only Independent Luxury Boutique Hotel in Canada to Earn this Prestigious Accolade

Toronto/CNW/—The Hazelton Hotel, a luxurious urban retreat located in the heart of Yorkville, is thrilled to announce that it has earned a Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star Rating for 2022. Forbes Travel Guide is the only independent global rating system recognized internationally as the authority in genuine Five-Star service, and The Hazelton is the latest addition to its illustrious annual 2022 Star Rating list.

Since it opened its doors in 2007, The Hazelton has become emblematic of world-class luxury for both domestic and international travelers. The landmark property is home to the renowned ONE Restaurant and 77 opulent hotel rooms and suites. In addition, the property also offers a Spa by Valmont which is a tranquil oasis of health and wellness and a state-of-the-art Screening Room. In every aspect of hospitality, The Hazelton team continues to redefine the standards of service and quality, thereby offering an unparalleled experience to all guests and residents. 

"We are incredibly proud and grateful to earn this prestigious designation", says Gaurav Dutta, General Manager, The Hazelton. "Forbes Five-Star is the pinnacle of achievement for hoteliers across the world and each member of our dedicated team worked cohesively to achieve this goal.  Every single day we strive for excellence and continue to build on the trust and confidence that we have established with our guests and residents. We look forward to showcasing The Hazelton's Five-Star experience to our discerning guests."

Hermann Elger, Forbes Travel Guide CEO says, "We congratulate The Hazelton Hotel on becoming the first independent boutique luxury hotel in Canada to earn the coveted Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star award. Despite the many challenges of the past year, the driven, passionate team went above and beyond. We are delighted the hotel reached the pinnacle of its efforts to deliver an outstanding guest experience."

To showcase the full Hazelton Five-Star experience, the hotel is offering an exclusive "Star Celebration  Package" for two guests which includes a night's stay in a lavish suite, a 60-minute massage treatment, $500 Luxury Spa gift bag, $500 ONE Restaurant dining credit, Aston Martin house car service within the GTA, complimentary parking, in-room VIP amenities including Champagne, cheese board and macarons and a private screening room experience accompanied by bubbles and gourmet bites – organized by The Hazelton's expert team. To reserve, visit: https://www.thehazeltonhotel.com/offers/, email: reservations@thehazeltonhotel.com or call + 1 416 963 6300

To view images of the hotel, rooms and suites, restaurant and spa, click here.

About The Hazelton Hotel and ONE Restaurant

The Hazelton Hotel is Toronto's first and only Forbes Five-Star independent luxury boutique hotel situated in Yorkville, Toronto– the epicenter of fashion, art and lifestyle in Canada. The hotel is an iconic landmark and the only member of The Leading Hotels of The World in the city. The Hazelton offers 77 lavish hotel rooms and suites designed by internationally renowned design firm – Yabu Pushelberg. It is home to an intimate private Silver Screening Room and to the Spa by Valmont, one of the most exclusive spa sanctuaries in Toronto. The hotel's ONE Restaurant is helmed by the renowned Chef Darby Piquette, offering world class cuisine and boasting one of Toronto's finest patios.

About Forbes Travel Guide:
Forbes Travel Guide is the only global rating system for luxury hotels, restaurants and spas. Our anonymous professional inspectors evaluate based on up to 900 objective standards, with an emphasis on exceptional service, to help discerning travelers select the world's best luxury experiences. The only way to get a Five-Star, Four-Star or Recommended rating is by earning it through our independent inspection process. For more information about Forbes Travel Guide, please visit ForbesTravelGuide.com.

April 26, 2022
Elevating the Exceptional: Four Seasons Affirms Longstanding Leadership with Highest Recognition from Forbes Travel Guide

Toronto/CNW/—Leading luxury hospitality company Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts continues its legacy of service excellence and innovation with the most Forbes Travel Guide Five-Stars awarded to a single hospitality brand for the seventh consecutive year. Recipients in 2022 include 50 hotels and resorts, 14 spas and four restaurants across the Four Seasons global portfolio.

Recognition from Forbes Travel Guide and industry awards alike affirm Four Seasons ongoing commitment to elevating the guest experience and investing in an unparalleled product offering to meet the needs of today's luxury traveller. For more than 60 years, Four Seasons has achieved global acclaim through leading industry awards, including holding the most Michelin Stars of any single luxury hospitality brand.

"This incredible achievement is a testament to our teams worldwide – those driven by an unwavering dedication to genuine care and the creation of memorable moments that stay with our guests for a lifetime," says Christian Clerc - President, Hotels and Resorts. "The demand for luxury experiences is stronger than ever, and we continue to enhance our portfolio and empower our people to reach even higher – always pushing the boundaries to create exceptional experiences for all who visit us."  

In 2022, five Four Seasons properties, two restaurants and one spa have been awarded their very first Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star designation. Hotel recipients include Four Seasons Hotel Madrid and The Grand Suites at Four Seasons Hotel Macao, Cotai Strip, which both opened in 2020, as well as Four Seasons Hotel Amman, Four Seasons Hotel One Dalton Street, Boston and Four Seasons Resort Maldives at Landaa Giraavaru. In the spa category, The Wellness Floor at Four Seasons Hotel One Dalton Street, Boston was also awarded their inaugural Five-Star designation.

In addition, Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong has achieved a record-breaking 30 stars across the hotel, spa, and all four restaurants, with Sushi Saito and Tempura Uchitsu now joining the property's existing collection of Five-Stars for 2022.

"The achievements of Four Seasons in this year's Forbes Travel Guide awards once again demonstrate the company's longstanding commitment to exemplary service," says Hermann Elger, CEO, Forbes Travel Guide. "With 68 Five-Stars across its portfolio, Four Seasons has consistently delivered unparalleled service and continues to introduce inventive and personalized new offerings for its guests."

For a full list of Four Seasons properties recognized by the Forbes Travel Guide awards click here.

Recognizing that its people are at the heart of the company's renowned service experience and industry accolades, Four Seasons continues to invest in its talent and culture. The brand is also making ongoing strategic enhancements to its portfolio, ensuring that each product offering is a differentiated and authentic reflection of the local community and culture, while also investing in and leveraging the award-winning Four Seasons App and Chat. As guests continue to value seamless, worry-free travel, Lead With Carethe company's enhanced health and safety program, remains a fixture at all properties, evolving for the future to ensure guests feel confident and cared for throughout their Four Seasons journey.

To view more images, click here.

To view a complete list of Four Seasons awards and accolades, click here.

Methodology
Star ratings are awarded by a team of anonymous professional inspectors who travel the world to assess hotels, restaurants and spas based on 900 objective standards. Star ratings ultimately emphasize quality of service. Five-Star properties are defined as "outstanding, often iconic properties with virtually flawless service and amazing facilities."

About Forbes Travel Guide
Forbes Travel Guide is the only global rating system for luxury hotels, restaurants, and spas. Anonymous professional inspectors evaluate based on up to 900 objective standards, with an emphasis on exceptional service, to help discerning travellers select the world's best luxury experiences. The only way to get a Five-Star, Four-Star or Recommended rating is by earning it through this independent inspection process. 

About Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts opened its first hotel in 1961, and since that time has been dedicated to perfecting the travel experience through continual innovation and the highest standards of hospitality. Currently operating 123 hotels and resorts, and 50 residential properties in major city centres and resort destinations in 47 countries, and with more than 50 projects under planning or development, Four Seasons consistently ranks among the world's best hotels and most prestigious brands in reader polls, traveller reviews and industry awards. For more information and reservations, visit fourseasons.com. For the latest news, visit press.fourseasons.com and follow @FourSeasonsPR on Twitter.

Media Contact:
Emily Borgeest
fourseasons@kwtglobal.com

April 22, 2022
Atlantis Paradise Island Announces Groundbreaking Enhancements for 2022 and Beyond

The Bahamas’ Most Famous Resort Raises the Bar Again with Multimillion-Dollar Upgrades and Bold Names in Lifestyle

Paradise Island, Bahamas—Atlantis Paradise Island is going bigger and bolder in 2022 by announcing multimillion-dollar renovations and exciting new partnerships at the iconic resort located on five miles of white sand beaches in The Bahamas. For nearly 25 years, Atlantis, best known for exuding Bahamian culture, serving as a marvel and custodian of marine life, and its landmark pink architecture – specifically the highly recognizable Royal Towers and Bridge Suite - has paved the way for luxury, hospitality and entertainment in the Caribbean and around the world. Now the resort is raising the bar even higher by embarking upon a new chapter with an array of massive upgrades and striking enhancements that include the redevelopment of The Beach Tower and all Royal Tower guestrooms and suites, a reimagined Atlantis Casino, and the addition of another Michelin-starred chef to its already impressive dining roster.

Stunning accommodations, innovative cuisine, and dynamic experiences travelers will experience from Atlantis Paradise Island, the most famed and fantastical island destination. 

EVOCATIVE CUISINE
Caribbean’s premier culinary destination
- Chef Michael White, the multi-starred New York Times and Michelin recognized Italian chef, and former chef/owner of prominent dining destinations Convivio, Alto, Ai Fiori and Marea in New York City, will join Nobu Matsuhisa and José Andrés, making Atlantis the only resort in the region to boast three Michelin star-rated chefs. The four-time James Beard Award nominee will serve modern coastal Italian cuisine at his latest outpost, Paranza at The Cove, expected to open this year.

- Pita, a Mediterranean-style beachside concession situated near Atlantis’ renowned Aquaventure, offers homemade shawarma, falafel, chilled bites, dips, salads, and desserts- an ideal spot to satisfy all-day cravings.  

VIP-LEVEL ACCOMMODATIONS 
Blending Bahamian hospitality and comfort with superior design 
- Renovation of all guestrooms and suites in The Royal East Tower will be complete by summer 2022, closely followed by newly renovated rooms and suites in The Royal West Tower. Design elements celebrate the natural seascape of aquamarine waters, white-sand beaches, and coral reefs to inspire a soothing environment where guests can relax and unwind.

- The Royal’s world-famous Bridge Suite is on track for total renovation and completion next year. The epitome of relaxed luxury on a grand scale, the design elements will include bold, organic, rich and opulent textures and details that reflect the legend of Atlantis and its oceanic design motif found throughout the resort. Gold finishes will remind guests of found treasures of the lost city of Atlantis.

- Looking beyond 2022, in partnership with David Grutman of Groot Hospitality, Atlantis will open a brand-new “oasis within an oasis,” resort dubbed Somewhere Else. Replacing the current site of The Beach Tower, this unique oceanfront escape, opening in 2024, will offer 400 guestrooms and suites alongside top-tier dining venues, lushly landscaped grounds, multiple pools, recreation areas, upscale amenities, and live performances—all within easy reach of the myriad of dining and entertainment options synonymous with Atlantis. 

A WORLD-CLASS WONDERLAND 
Fostering fun and leisure with experiential moments
- The Atlantis Casino will undergo a refresh that will include modern finishes, shimmering textures, celestial fixtures, and flowing lines echoing the refractions of the sea. Upon entering the Atlantis Casino, guests will be welcomed with a grander and even more elegant sense of space. Other updates will include the expansion of the Atlantis Casino’s two on-site lounges, an exciting high-limit slots lounge, and an expansion of the exclusive gaming salon. 

- The Cove, the resort’s luxury all-suite hotel, recently debuted the Lapis Club Lounge offering breathtaking views of Paradise Island, daily breakfast, hors d’oeuvres, and a full-service bar. The hotel also introduced Sapphire Services, new bespoke concierge offerings, including bookable experiences such as intimate beach dinners, exclusive programming at the resort’s 14-acre marine mammal habitat - Dolphin Cay, and private cabanas. The ever-popular adults-only Cove Pool will also undergo a refresh.

- Splashers, the pool and water playground for Atlantis’s youngest guests, will be adding thrilling slides, climbing areas, and more later this year.

- Atlantis Blue Project Foundation (ABPF), the resort’s nonprofit and conservation organization, celebrates its 15th anniversary. Since its inception in 2007, the foundation has been a longstanding environmental leader in The Bahamas, creating coral nurseries to propagate corals, cultivating and donating hundreds of mangroves each year to help restore wetlands around The Bahamas, educating the local community about ocean conservation and more.

“We could not be more excited for all of the developments coming to Atlantis this year,” said Audrey Oswell, President and Managing Director of Atlantis Paradise Island. “With these incredible additions, we are continuing Atlantis’ legacy of offering guests endless, immersive experiences during their stay.” 

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

Kelly Wells
Eleven Six PR
302-824-4511
Kelly@elevensixpr.com

About Atlantis Paradise Island:
Atlantis Paradise Island, a lush, oceanside resort located on Paradise Island in The Bahamas, is a dynamic destination that launched over 25 years ago as a first-of-its-kind modern marvel of nature and engineering. Bahamian culture and the spirit of its beloved team members are the heart and soul of this legendary resort. The immersive programming connects guests to the rich history, art, people, food, and festivities of The Bahamas while remaining dedicated to sustainability and environmental conservation. 

Atlantis features five unique lodging options: the grand iconic towers of The Royal, family-friendly accommodations at The Coral, water-side villas at Harborside Resort, all-suite luxury accommodations at The Cove, and residential-style accommodations with full kitchens at The Reef. The resort is centered around Aquaventure, an innovative, 141-acre waterscape of thrilling slides and river rides, eleven pools, and five miles of 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 natural ocean-fed environments. With its unparalleled meeting and convention space, the well-appointed Atlantis Marina with 63 slips hosting vessels up to 250 feet/76 meters overlooking Marina Village and more, the Atlantis experiences are endless and unique to each traveler. Additional resort amenities include the 30,000 sq ft tranquil Mandara Spa, state-of-the-art fitness center and wellness programs, outdoor tennis and basketball courts, a 400-seat movie theatre, Atlantis Kids Adventures (AKA) for children ages 3-12, gaming arcade and CRUSH, a nightclub for teens. Jokers Comedy and Night Club offers nightly entertainment and live music. The resort is also home to an award-winning 18-hole golf course designed by Tom Weiskopf, renowned Atlantis Casino, duty-free shopping, and restaurants and lounges with celebrity chef culinary masterpieces, including Fish by José Andrés, Nobu, by Nobu Matsuhisa, and Olives, by Todd English. Guests of Atlantis Paradise Island have exclusive access to unforgettable excursions led by local partners including Pieces of 8 boat tours, Tropic Ocean Airways and Coco Bahama Seaplanes. Day trips to The Bahamas’ out islands of Exuma and Eleuthera to swim with pigs and nurse sharks or feed iguanas in their natural habitats are a few of many #BahamasAtHeart itineraries travelers can discover.

Atlantis has committed to a meaningful connection with the ocean, marine life, sustainability, and environmental stewardship through its purpose-led efforts with Dolphin Cay and the Atlantis Blue Project Foundation (ABPF). Dolphin Cay, the resort's 14-acre marine mammal habitat, is an advanced marine education center and animal rescue rehabilitation hospital whose first residents include 17 rescue dolphins from Hurricane Katrina. Visitors to Dolphin Cay, one of the world's largest and most sophisticated marine-mammal habitats in the world, can participate in creative, non-disruptive "interactions" that build real awareness, stir emotion, and help fund the resort's conservation efforts. Every visit to Dolphin Cay and each Atlantis Marine Adventure, such as snorkeling and SCUBA diving, benefits ABPF, the resort's nonprofit 501©3 organization dedicated to saving sea species and their extraordinary habitats throughout The Bahamas and surrounding Caribbean seas. Atlantis Paradise Island offers a variety of unforgettable excursions with local partners including Pieces of 8, which offers day trip trips to Exuma and Eleuthera to swim with pigs and nurse sharks or feed iguanas in the wild, and Coco Bahamas Air to help visitors explore the destination.

About The Cove, Atlantis Paradise Island
The Cove, Atlantis Paradise Island’s luxury hotel, is nestled along a protected cove between two private white sand beaches. The Cove offers 600 elegant suites with balconies, floor-to-ceiling ocean views, and impeccable butler service. The adults-only Cove Pool features 20 private beach cabanas with Bahamian-inspired art and design. Guests can enjoy outdoor gaming at the pool, indoor gaming at Sea Glass Lounge, exceptional cuisine at FISH by the world-renowned and Michelin star Chef José Andrés and authentic Bahamian cuisine at Sip Sip by celebrated Bahamian Chef Julie Lightbourn, as well as shopping at Escape Boutique. The Cove recently announced an exclusive partnership with niLuu to create vegan silk mini-kimono robes in the hotel’s signature plum color available exclusively for VIP guests of The Cove and for purchase at Escape boutique. The Cove recently debuted the reimagined Lapis which offers private access to daily breakfast, hors d’oeuvres, a full bar, and breathtaking views of Paradise Island to guests staying in select suites. There is also a dedicated concierge on site to assist with reservations.

Enhancing the luxury experience and white-glove services offered by The Cove, the Sapphire Services program provides bespoke, exclusive concierge services to guests. From private dinners and VIP programming at Dolphin Cay to collaborations with high-end brands and private jet and yacht charters, this new program will elevate the exclusivity of the elegant retreat, adding an experiential element to the high-end amenities already offered.

Visitors staying at The Cove also have access to Atlantis’ Aquaventure with its various slides, lazy rivers and pools, Atlantis Casino, five miles of pristine beaches, diverse dining, spa, golf, shopping, and more. For more information and reservations please visit: coveatlantis.com or call 888-497-5997.

April 19, 2022
Zero Waste Train and Participation in Renowned United Nations Global Compact: VIA Rail Unveils its Five-Year Sustainability Plan

Montreal/CNW Telbec/—VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) is pleased to be reaching key milestones today in its sustainability journey with the unveiling of its sustainability plan and its participation in the world's largest corporate sustainability initiative, the United Nations Global Compact.

VIA Rail's promise
In the 21st century, Canadians need a transportation network that seamlessly, efficiently, and sustainably connects their communities, that is why VIA Rail has been transforming passenger rail service through its modernization program and its sustainability and accessibility plans.

The Corporation reviewed in 2020 its policies, practices, and sustainability priorities to inform the development of this robust and future-oriented five-year sustainability plan that will allow VIA Rail to reduce its environmental footprint, enhance its role as a responsible transportation provider and create lasting value for present and future generations.

"Sustainability is fundamentally related to our value of acting today for a better tomorrow,"  said Cynthia Garneau, President and Chief Executive Officer. "It is a priority and the foundation of the future we are all building together. This plan focuses amongst others on climate action, responsible sourcing and waste management and it will be yet another way for VIA Rail to be part of the solution in helping Canada create a more sustainable future for all."   

This sustainability plan contributes to Canada's various strategies and objectives and will embed environmental, social and governance performance in all VIA Rail's operations so that it can be future ready and more resilient.

We are aiming to reach various objectives by 2025, including:

  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 30% or more by 2030 (compared to 2005);
  • Offering zero-waste trains in the Québec City-Windsor corridor;
  • Training all employees on sustainability;
  • Aligning 80% of community investments with the priorities of this sustainability plan;
  • Reaching 80% integration of the responsible sourcing policy by suppliers.

United Nations Global Compact
This plan was also designed to contribute to the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals on which VIA Rail can have the greatest impact. Determined to continue moving forward on this path and reinforcing its commitment towards responsible business practices, VIA Rail recently became the first land transportation company in Canada to join the United Nations Global Compact. It will uphold the compact's universal sustainability principles and contribute to broader societal goals.

We invite you to consult the full sustainability plan here and to watch a special message from our President and Chief Executive Officer, Cynthia Garneau, here.

About VIA Rail
As Canada's national rail passenger service, VIA Rail (viarail.ca) and all its employees are mandated to provide safe, efficient and economical passenger transportation service, in both official languages of our country. VIA Rail operates intercity, regional, and transcontinental trains linking over 400 communities across Canada, and about 180 more communities through intermodal partnerships, and safely transported over 5 million passengers in 2019. The Corporation has been awarded nine Safety Awards and three Environment Awards by the Railway Association of Canada since 2005. Visit the "About VIA Rail" section at https://www.viarail.ca/en/about-via-rail.

Twitter @VIA_rail,
Facebook viarailcanada,
Instagram @viarailcanada
VIA: The Blog

SOURCE VIA Rail Canada Inc.

For further information: Jamie Orchard, VIA Rail Canada,1 877 393-8787, medias@viarail.ca

April 19, 2022
K2 Group acquires Quality Inn & Suites in Niagara Falls, Ontario

This acquisition marks the fourth in K2's growing hotel portfolio in Niagara Falls

Toronto/CNW/—Canadian privately-held investment firm K2 Group today announced the acquisition of Choice Hotel Canada's Quality Inn & Suites in Niagara Falls, Ontario. The deal marks the fourth Niagara region hotel in the group's portfolio.

"K2 Group continues to grow its hospitality division of high-quality, well-located assets with strong demand generators, particularly in drive-to leisure markets like Niagara Falls, which attracts over 13 million visitors annually," says Kailash Kasal, President of K2 Group. "The hospitality industry is in a sustained recovery cycle, which is boosting hotel fundamentals. We continue to believe hotels, which are an effective inflation-hedging investment, will remain among the strongest real estate sectors for investing."

"K2 Group has acquired a premium hotel asset with 1.82 acres of land in the heart of one of the world's most famous cities," says Graham Marsh, Director of Franchise Development for Choice Hotels Canada"We look forward to further growing our relationship with K2 Group as Niagara Falls is one of the great wonders of the world and will forever remain a global magnet for both domestic and international travellers."

This newly renovated 84-room property boasts many amenities that give it a strong competitive edge. Located in the heart of Ferry Street, minutes from Niagara Falls, Casino Niagara, Maid of the Mist, Clifton Hill and many other attractions, Quality Inn & Suites Niagara Falls is an ideal destination for business and leisure travelers alike. Guest amenities include premium bedding, a business centre, fitness facility, indoor swimming pool and hot tub as well as four restaurants on-site.

K2 Group holds investments under the umbrellas of hospitality, petroleum and senior living, and was recently recognized as one of Canada's Top Growing Companies for 2021 by the Globe and Mail's Report on Business Magazine and an Innovation Leader on the 2022 list highlighting Canada's Top 50 most progressive companies by Canadian Business.

About K2 Group
K2 Group is a privately held fully integrated company that strategically acquires, develops, constructs and repositions hospitality, petroleum and real estate assets throughout Canada. We endeavour to deliver sustained above-market returns for our investors and partners by facilitating the flow of capital and knowledge to our projects. For more information on K2 Group, visit the company's website at www.k2group.ca.

About Choice Hotels
Choice Hotels Canada is the nation's largest hotel franchisor with 340 properties currently open or under development. We are affiliated with Choice Hotels International, Inc., which franchises more than 6,800 hotels in 40 countries and territories worldwide. With more than 37 million members and counting, check out our Choice Privileges rewards program to see how you can reap the benefits of being a member of the Choice Hotels family. For more information on Choice Hotels Canada, visit the company's website at www.choicehotels.ca.

For more information please contact:
Michelle Easton
press@contraban.de

SOURCE K2 Group

April 14, 2022
The Palm Beaches Celebrates Global Meetings Industry Day by Inspiring Meetings Industry to Incorporate Wellness & Sustainability

West Palm Beach, Fla.—On April 7, 2021, The Palm Beaches joined organizations across the globe to support Global Meetings Industry Day (GMID) by showcasing how to incorporate wellness initiatives and sustainability into the meetings industry.  GMID, led by the industry advocacy coalition Meetings Mean Business (MMB), is an international day of recognition showcasing the significant value that business meetings, conferences, conventions, incentive travel, trade shows and exhibitions bring to destinations and their economy. The Palm Beaches celebrated with an environmental theme, “Meeting Today to Inspire Change for a More Sustainable Tomorrow,” recognizing one of the industry’s top priorities of operating meetings and events sustainably to keep a destination well for years to come. 

The Palm Beaches hosted a group of meetings and event professionals to learn how the destination incorporates sustainable practices and how its community wellness thought leaders are inspiring the industry to do better. Presenters included the host, The Pelican Club, who explained how simple changes can lead to more sustainable meetings by using locally sourced products, eliminating food waste, and using items such as biodegradable straws and rechargeable candles.  4Ocean, a purpose-driven business in Boca Raton on a mission to end the ocean plastic crisis, discussed how they hire captains, crews and boats to remove ocean trash and how every product purchased removes one pound of trash from the ocean. 

Juno Beach-based Florida Power & Light highlighted their commitment to solar energy with the use of clean energy solar trees at the Convention Center, train station, airport, and attractions, as well as their commitment to environmental education and wellness through Manatee Lagoon.  Garden of Life, a wellness company located in Palm Beach Gardens, spoke about using clean ingredients in the most sustainable way possible to empower extraordinary health.  According to new research from MMGY, an increasing number of travelers consider environmental efforts when making travel decisions - 15 percent said it was a consideration and 20 percent indicated it impacted their choices.  The Palm Beaches and its area partners are dedicated to environmental wellness so that the destination remains clean, healthy, and safe for many more visitors to enjoy over time.  

“Wellness and sustainability are now a way of life and must be part of the foundation of destination services for meeting planners,” said Kelly Cavers, Chief Sales Officer for Discover The Palm Beaches. Cavers continued, “Incorporating personal wellness into meetings with open-air spaces, walkable districts, and outdoor activities is just the beginning.  The Palm Beaches prioritizes the health and wellness of its partners, its community, and the environment.  How we all come together to ensure a positive outcome for everyone matters.”

GMID took place at The Pelican Club, one of The Palm Beaches’ finest meeting experiences with one of the best views in town, overlooking the Jupiter Inlet and Lighthouse.  Guests networked and partook in a delectable breakfast on the outdoor terrace that was designed by the chef at the Pelican Club and incorporated Garden of Life products as ingredients in the dishes.  The Palm Beaches highlighted its local collaboration with partners, wellness initiatives, and custom experiences to planners in attendance.

Guests also had the opportunity to shop 4Ocean products at the event including water bottles, bracelets, and more to help support its mission.  Further, The Palm Beaches asked attendees to fill out cards before leaving stating how they have been inspired to incorporate sustainability into their events and to share it on social media.

The U.S. Travel Association revealed that meetings, conventions, and other corporate travel-related events make up nearly 15 percent of all travel in the country, which results in $101 billion in spending, one million jobs and almost $16 billion in federal, state and local taxes.  While the pandemic significantly impacted this sector of tourism, meetings and events in The Palm Beaches recovered about 50 percent in 2021 from 2019 levels.  As the business travel sector continues to steadily increase, the destination anticipates 75 to 85 percent recovery of groups and meetings business in 2022.  The Palm Beaches also launched a new Between-The-Sessions marketing campaign in 2021 aimed at attracting conventions, events and meeting planners, which has helped drive the increase in bookings and growth in leads.

“The travel industry will not be fully recovered until the meetings industry is fully recovered,” said Jorge Pesquera, president and CEO of The Palm Beaches. “We have come a long way since 2020 and are committed to this vital part of our industry coming back better than ever.  Our dedicated team of professionals at The Palm Beaches is available to offer exceptional revamped services to meeting planners, ensuring that we drive the human value for face-to-face meetings while guaranteeing that we are good stewards of our destination,” closed Pesquera.

Global Meetings Industry Day shines a light on the real impact meetings have on people, businesses and the economy. GMID was created in 2016 by the MMB coalition to raise the profile of the meetings and events industry and its worldwide $2.65 trillion economic impact.

Learn more about The Palm Beaches at www.ThePalmBeaches.com or follow along on social media via @PalmBeachesFL.

About Discover The Palm Beaches
Discover The Palm Beaches is the official 501(c)(6) not-for-profit, accredited tourism marketing organization that promotes the collection of 39 cities and towns commonly referred to as The Palm Beaches, which spans more than 2,300 square miles and boasts 47 miles of pristine beaches from Highland Beach and Boca Raton to Jupiter and Tequesta. Tasked with growing visitation and the local tourism economy, the organization works year-round to bring travelers from around the state, country and globe to visit Palm Beach County. The Palm Beaches’ have a rich history in hospitality as America’s First Resort Destination® and tourism is among Palm Beach County’s major industries, generating $7.8 billion in economic impact during 2021.

The Palm Beaches are home to more than 18,400+ hotel rooms, and feature more than 100 family-friendly attractions, an abundance of world-class luxury, award-winning restaurants, and 125 miles of peaceful waterways for on- or in-the-water activities, including 160 artificial reefs that line the Atlantic Ocean’s Gulf Stream current. 160 golf courses have earned it the moniker of Florida’s Golf Capital®, as well as The Cultural Capital of Florida® due to its thriving entertainment scene of more than 200 art and culture organizations. Situated along I-95, The Palm Beaches are accessible via Palm Beach International Airport (PBI), which offers more than 100 daily nonstop flights to 30 cities in the United States. The Palm Beaches are also conveniently located within driving distance of Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood and Miami International airports.

For more information about The Palm Beaches, visit www.ThePalmBeaches.com or on social media (FacebookTwitterInstagramYouTube,LinkedIn and TikTok). Visitors and residents can take advantage of county-wide deals via The Palm Beaches Savings Pass.  They can also tune in to The Palm Beaches TV for 24/7 streaming content of the destination’s hotels, attractions, restaurants and experiences.

MEDIA CONTACTS:
The Palm Beaches
PR@thepalmbeaches.com

April 14, 2022
Jamaica Drops COVID Pre Testing and Mask Requirements

Beginning April 16, 2022, Jamaica will no longer require visitors to take pre covid tests before coming to the island. It will also not be mandatory to wear masks in enclosed public areas.

This announcement follows the recent end of the Disaster Risk Management Act (Enforcement Measures) Order and curfews.

Reminders:

  • • Persons 12 years and older travelling prior to April 16, 2022, will need to provide a negative COVID-19 test (PCR or Antigen), which was conducted within 72 hours prior to date of travel at check-in for their flights.
  • • All persons travelling to Jamaica will need to fill out the Immigration/Customs C5 form either by submitting the form online using the website https://enterjamaica.com or they may fill out the paper card that is issued by the airline while in flight.
  • • Persons who test positive for COVID-19 will be required to isolate.
  • • For more information on entry protocols for Jamaica, please see our list of Frequently Asked Questions here

For more information, click here

April 12, 2022
Event Education Leader ELI to Host Innovation & Engagement Summit

New York—On Wednesday, April 20th, 2022, the Event Leadership Institute, a premier provider of professional development and education for industry professionals, is hosting its first Innovation & Engagement Summit for event professionals. This half-day virtual event will feature A-list industry leaders and speakers who will focus on the future of the event industry by showcasing innovative technologies and strategies to promote engagement at events. A topic of the utmost relevance and importance for event professionals globally, the Innovation & Engagement Summit will be a can’t miss experience to set individuals up to make their next move, the right move.

Providing insight on future trends, cutting-edge event technologies, and engagement tools, event attendees will leave with valuable knowledge to incorporate into their organization’s events and for their clients. This ground-breaking Innovation & Engagement Summit will also focus on the science of engagement, discussing capabilities that allow people worldwide to continue to meet, do business, and meaningfully connect – no matter where they are.

Some key topics attendees will learn about are the best ways to use new technology solutions and practical ways to reinvent and reimagine your events with an innovation mindset. A few of the featured sessions include:

● Hot or Hype? NFTs, Smart Glasses, Facial Recognition, Blockchain, Metaverse & More: Dissecting the Latest Innovations & Their Implications for Events

● Holograms & Virtual Stages: Alternative Ways to Present Remote Speakers

● Using Empathy Mapping to Understand Audience Behavior & Customize Engagement

This Innovation & Engagement Summit will hear from the industry's finest, including Dahlia El Gazaar from Dahlia+Agency, Will Curran, DES from Endless Events, Brandt Krueger from Event Leadership Institute, Larry O'Reilly from ARHT Media, and Beth Surmont from 360 Live. The full lineup can be found here, with more exciting announcements to come.

“The Event Leadership Institute has carefully curated topics and speakers for our first Innovation & Engagement Summit to bring cutting-edge and future-forward technologies and solutions to event professionals. We recognize that the industry is at the precipice of evolving yet again to create event environments that are both innovative and engaging, whether experienced in-person or through our devices. As a result, planners are looking for what’s new and different to elevate their events - and we’ve pulled together some of the best speakers and innovators in the business to provide their insights and perspectives,” says Howard Givner, Founder & CEO of the Event Leadership Institute.

This ground-breaking ELI event is being held in partnership with Meeting Professionals International with support from production partner Redstone Agency, platform provider Hubilo, and exclusive media provider Smart Meetings.

To register and learn more about ELI's Innovation & Engagement Summit, visit https://eli4.me/ELISummit.

About Event Leadership Institute
The Event Leadership Institute provides progressive online education, training, and professional development programs for event & meeting industry professionals. Our mission is to lead the growth and advancement of the events industry by facilitating thought leadership and being a trusted source of resources and education for event professionals at any stage of their career. With an extensive on-demand video class library (over 180 videos available and growing) and instructor-led professional development courses, group training, webinars, and more, ELI strives to advance the industry by creating learning opportunities for industry professionals.