Archive | July, 2011

Munich Show Is Set To Witness ‘The Naked and Famous’ Band

30 Jul

Munich is set to welcome New Zealand’s latest musical export The Naked and Famous later this year.

Singles Young Blood and Punching in a Dream exemplify the band’s hazy electro-pop sound, which has been likened to the catchy psychedelia of indie chart-toppers MGMT.

Young Blood was notable for being the first debut single to reach number one in New Zealand in 16 years, but the group are already starting to translate domestic success into a major worldwide following.

Tickets are available online for 21.50 Euros and doors will open at 20:00 local time.

Support for the gig will be provided by London-based songwriter Wolf Gang, aka Max McElligott, who recently released his debut LP Suego Faults to widespread critical acclaim.

The Stafford London by Kempinski renovations

30 Jul

The historic The Stafford London by Kempinski 5-star hotel has a new look after a seven-month, US$9.7 million renovation.

This marked the hotel’s first major overhaul since it closed its doors for a redesign in 1995. The hotel dates from the mid-1800s.

“We wanted to emphasize the quintessentially British hotel,” Leon Baum, the hotel’s general manager said. “Stafford is very dear to many clients’ hearts as we have 40% repeat clients. The renovation had to be handled in a very delicate matter. Change is difficult for most.”

Hotels Magazine talked with Baum about the changes and Baum’s comments on the renovations can be found in the “before and after” photo gallery below.

Tuscany’s Aromatic City Tunes Melody in Summer Festival

30 Jul

Siena in Tuscany is famous for its exquisite beauty, and nicknamed for the region’s intensely-flavored cuisine. But from 24th to 27th August 2011, this is also the destination for those seeking aural originality. The summer festival brings rock, jazz, dance and alternative music to the city centre.

Beneath the distinctive gothic skyline round the Piazza del Campo and Piazza del Francesco, stages are erected to allow inspired modern performers the chance to thrill large audiences with original work and contemporary slants on established material.

Accomplished local talent performs alongside international bands combining innovative notes of ethnicity with familiar and unconventional rifts. There is strong support for avant-garde ideas and techniques with a voracious appetite for the untried.

Siena’s long history is visible all round the piazza, so even a short walk from the centre is filled with rewarding sights and cultural heritage. Day and night, the air is rich with the scents and sounds of The Aromatic City.


Tourism in Vietnam boosts by 3%

30 Jul

International visitor arrivals to Vietnam saw a small 2.9% year-on-year increase in July 2011, according to the preliminary monthly data from the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism (VNAT).

The country attracted an estimated 460,000 visitors during the month, led by arrivals from China, which increased 6.5% year-on-year to 123,200 – 26.8% of the total. Arrivals from South Korea (-1.2% to 38,900) and the USA (-6.6% to 34,700) both declined, but those from Japan (+6.2% to 33,100) and Taiwan (+2.1% to 30,000) increased. For the first seven months of the year Vietnam’s arrivals exceeded 3.4 million – 17.3% more than the same period in 2010.

Suit Filed Against Pilot Union by US Airways

30 Jul

US Airways filed a lawsuit on Friday against the union representing its pilots that asks a federal court to prevent the group from participating in activities the airline claims are affecting its operations.

US Airways is alleging the US Airline Pilots Association is encouraging its members to “engage in an illegal slowdown in order to put pressure on US Airways” as the two camps attempt to hash out a new contract, according to the court filing.

“This is not a step we take lightly, but we simply can no longer allow the labor union’s illegal and misguided actions to harm US Airways, our employees and our customers,” wrote US Airways chief executive Doug Parker in a note to employees.

US Airways and the union have been engaged in contract negotiations for several years stemming from the 2005 merger of America West and US Airways.

The Taming Of The Shrew In Pembrokeshire

30 Jul

People visiting Pembrokeshire next month may have the opportunity to enjoy an open-air performance of a classic Shakespeare comedy.

With tickets priced at just 12 Euros for adults and 10 Euros for concessions, the event could appeal to keen theatre-goers staying in Tenby or other resorts in the area.

Famous as the inspiration for both the Hollywood teen film 10 Things I Hate About You and Cole Porter’s musical Kiss Me Kate, the play combines elements of farce and gender politics with a passionate love story.

It will be performed at Lampeter House by the Festival Players, a Gloucestershire-based theatre company currently touring the UK with its interpretation of the work.

Lampeter House boasts a natural amphitheatre in its grounds, making it a popular venue for theatrical and operatic events.

Cockpit Warnings Confused Crew—Air France

30 Jul

Air France defended the pilots of a jet which crashed in the Atlantic two years ago and said the stall warnings were misleading.

Air France said there were multiple probable factors behind the loss of an Airbus with all 228 people on board and that a chain of events had started with speed data problems.

“It should be noted that the misleading stopping and starting of the stall warning alarm, contradicting the actual state of the aircraft, greatly contributed to the crew’s difficulty in analyzing the situation.”

It said investigators had not found any reason to question the crew’s technical skills.


Royal Caribbean has now the Second Female Master

30 Jul
Lis Lauritzen will become Master of the Vision of the Seas later this month, making her the second female captain at Royal Caribbean International.

Royal Caribbean broke through the gender barrier in March of 2007, making Karin Stahre-Janson captain of the Monarch of the Seas – the first female captain of a major cruise ship.

Since 2007, the cruise industry has welcomed three female captains. Royal Caribbean International was the first to name a woman the captain of a ship in 2007 followed by both P&O Cruises and Cunard Line in 2010.

It goes without saying that being a captain is a dynamic job where one must rule a small community, play the social game, make serious decisions and be somewhat content being responsible for a billion dollar ship and thousands of people.

New Lifestyle Book Launched By Celebrity Cruise

30 Jul

Celebrity Cruises now invites them to take that experience home, with an immersive new book.

An engaging 400-page book that will find itself right at home on the coolest coffee tables, Excite the Senses provides an up-close and personal look at Celebrity Cruises’ exceptional dining experience, complete with recipes, rich photography, and a host of tips for entertaining and hosting friends and family in Celebrity style at home.

“We titled this ‘Excite the Senses’ because what we offer onboard and what we present in the book centers around ensuring that every aspect of our culinary experience satisfies and appeals to all five senses,” said Celebrity’s Senior VP of Hotel Operations Lisa Lutoff-Perlo.

“Excite the Senses is a window into the amazing world here at Celebrity Cruises, and a core part of that world is the culinary experience,” said Vice President of Culinary Operations and James Beard-nominated Master Chef Jacques Van Staden, “The dining experience is an essential part of every guest’s vacation, and we’re committed to making it particularly unique – with every dish prepared fresh, from scratch.”
Recipes include the intimate, elegant specialty restaurant Murano’s “Wild Forest Mushroom Cappuccino”; the imaginative, future-forward Qsine’s “Chocolate Tombstone,” and, from Blu, Celebrity’s specialty restaurant offered exclusively for guests in its distinctive AquaClass staterooms, “Lump Crab Martini.”

Excite The Senses is available beginning today at, for a purchase price of $59.95 USD. A sneak peek at the book also can be accessed on the site.


Centara makes it three with two more hotels in Pattaya

30 Jul

Centara Hotels & Resorts has opened two new hotels in Pattaya, bringing its total of properties in the eastern Thai resort city to three. The Nova Hotel & Spa Pattaya becomes part of the Centara Boutique Collection brand, while Centra Pattaya Resort joins the Centra Hotels & Resorts midscale brand. Both hotels are located in central Pattaya, within walking distance of the beach and entertainment areas.

“This is very much a new milestone in the growth of Centara Hotels & Resorts,” said Suthikiati Chirathivat, Chairman of the Executive Board of Central Plaza Hotel Public Co Ltd.

“Pattaya has tremendous tourism growth potential for us, and we are very confident in the future of these two newly developed properties,” he added.

Centara Pattaya Resort meanwhile, features 152 rooms and suites, with a large number of family studios and two-bedroom units, many offering a dedicated children’s area, large living room and furnished terrace.