Bespoke Hotels Takes The Wraps Off Undercover Boss As Non-Exec Director

Luxury hotel group Bespoke Hotels has announced the appointment of David Clarke as one of its non-executive directors.

David, who is the former chief executive of the Best Western Hotels chain, is probably better known to those outside the hospitality business for his appearance on the Channel 4 television series Undercover Boss. As part of the show he adopted the persona of Andy Green, a new recruit at the hotel group, before working with staff to discover what life is really like on the front line in the hospitality sector.

Bespoke Hotels operates a portfolio of 59 Luxury hotels which cater for individuals, families and business guests. It has owned and managed some of the most admired hotels in the world. David’s role within the company will involve drawing on his wide-ranging experience to help develop and shape the firm’s offer, and provide expert feedback on the performance of the hotels’ management teams.

Robin Sheppard, Chairman, at Bespoke Hotels said: “We’re delighted to announce David’s appointment and are very excited about the prospect of him sharing his wealth of experience with us, and the directions his input can take the company in.

“David’s extensive experience, which covers all aspects of the hotel and hospitality sector, will no doubt prove to be invaluable in helping to push forward the Bespoke brand and grow the company across the world.”

After attending catering college at the age of 16, David took on his first trainee management role at the age of 21, making general manger six years later. By the age of 40 he had achieved his goal of running a five star luxury hotel – the Caledonian in Edinburgh. David co-founded Connoisseurs Scotland, a collection of the finest hotels in the country, and is also a fellow of the Institute of Hospitality and a member of the Master Innholders’ society.

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Why Wait Until December to Celebrate Christmas?

With Christmas rapidly approaching, upmarket holiday provider Warner Leisure Hotels has offered an early festive treat for those who would otherwise struggle to find time to celebrate this yuletide.

Although we’re only just into the autumn, October is traditionally the time when many people start making their preparations for the impending celebrations. However, more and more of us are working for longer than ever before and taking fewer holidays – which is why Warner Leisure Hotels is providing a handy alternative when it comes to Christmas breaks.

As part of its Turkey and Tinsel offering next month, the chain will give its hotels – from the charming Lakeside Coastal Resort in Hampshire to the stunning Thoresby Hall Hotel in Nottinghamshire – a festive makeover, allowing guests to make the most of the Christmas and New Year period, albeit a few weeks ahead of schedule.

“We know that not everyone will be able to find the time to really see in the festive period with a bang this year, which is why we’re confident our Turkey and Tinsel breaks will prove popular,” said Jason Riseborough, Marketing Manager of Warner Leisure Hotels. “As well as turning our hotels in to Warner winter wonderlands, we’ll also be laying on some top-quality entertainment to help our guests get the most out of their early Christmas celebrations.”

Warner Leisure Hotels owns 13 venues located across the UK, including six Grade I or II-listed historic hotels. While each resort boasts its own unique character, they all offer a range of classy accommodation, excellent facilities and a warm welcome.

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Eurostar Reports Solid Third Quarter In 2011

Eurostar, the high-speed passenger rail service between the UK and mainland Europe, has announced its results for the third quarter of 2011, having delivered a solid performance during the period with sales revenues up 7% (£197m in 2011 vs. £183m in 2010). Looking back across the year to date, total sales revenue figures have grown by 5% compared to the same period in 2010 (£617m in 2011 vs £588m in 2010).

The total number of passengers travelling on Eurostar services between January and September 2011, rose by 1% compared to the same period last year (7.3m in 2011 vs. 7.2m in 2010). Excluding the estimated impact of the ash cloud disruption in 2010, the underlying increase in passenger numbers for the year to date was 3%.

Nicolas Petrovic, Chief Executive, Eurostar, said: “We have delivered a solid performance during both the third quarter and the year as a whole although the tough trading environment across Europe demands a cautious watching brief. Since the beginning of the year we have seen growth in both our sales revenues and passenger numbers reinforcing our popularity with regular and new travellers alike.”

In spite of an uncertain economic climate, Business Premier sales revenues grew 2% in Q3 2011 vs. Q3 2010. While this underlines the operator’s positive performance during 2011, Eurostar remains cautious about the outlook moving forward in a challenging business environment.

The number of leisure travellers for the year to date grew by 2%. Research has shown that during previous economic downturns, leisure travellers have tended to protect their expenditure on short-haul leisure breaks, and this behaviour appears to have been borne out by Eurostar’s experience.

This trend is reinforced by the strong growth in international passenger numbers, up 21% for the year to date and 15% for the third quarter compared with same periods in 2010. This increase has been evident throughout 2011 reflecting the continued favourability of the UK and Europe as a travel destination.

With London 2012 now less than a year away, Eurostar anticipates increased interest in the UK as a destination as the world’s focus turns to the Games next year.

Eurostar has recently cemented its commitment to enhance the digital experience for travellers both before and during their trips. The recent launch of a free mobile application, which allows passengers to book journeys on-the-go and receive tickets direct to their mobile devices, is already proving popular with customers.

Eurostar is also introducing on board Wi-Fi connectivity and state-of-the-art infotainment for its fleet of high speed trains as part of its £700million
investment programme.

Nicolas Petrovic said: “With our new mobile App it’s easier than ever before for customers to access our services on the move. This is the first in a series of digital initiatives and is evidence of our continued commitment to upgrading the online experience for our customers.”

For more information on the new Eurostar app and to find other Eurostar deals such as cheap Eurostar tickets, interested parties can visit www.eurostar.com or call 08432 186 186.

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Drivers Should Plan Ahead for Snow Tyres This Winter Says Carrentals.co.uk

Winter tyres are the smart way to ensure a car’s safety on the snowy roads of the UK and Europe this winter, advises award-winning car hire website Carrentals.co.uk. The comparator is advising Brits to think ahead with a cold winter predicted this year.

Last year the heavy, early snow in the UK led many drivers to buy and fit snow tyres on their cars – which caused many big name providers such as Kwik Fit to run out of stocks.

Carrentals.co.uk regularly warns Brits heading away on ski holidays to book snow chains and winter tyres before they travel to be sure of getting what they need for their trips. With the prospect of a snowy UK winter looming however the website warns Brits to consider winter tyres on Britain’s roads too.

The vast majority of car hire providers do not carry winter tyres or snow chains as standard items and consider them to be extras – but travellers to ski resorts still often leave it until they arrive to ask about them.

Gareth Robinson, Managing Director of Carrentals.co.uk, says: “The matter of when is the right time to add winter snow tyres to a car is a tricky one – there’s no hard and fast rule about adding them to a car which must be adhered to but they are still highly recommended in snowy, icy weather.”

“People renting a car overseas for a ski trip should be smart and plan ahead – book a ‘snow pack’ which includes winter tyres, snow chains and more, to be sure you avoid missing out.”

Carrentals.co.uk is the leading hire car comparison site comparing cheap car hire deals from up to 50 rental companies, including Alamo, Auto Europe, Budget, Holiday Autos and Sixt, in over 15,000 locations worldwide including locations across Europe including car hire in Frankfurt and car hire in Berlin.

To compare the best prices visit www.carrentals.co.uk.

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Relentless Skiing Experiences at Freeze Festival London

As the ski season fast approaches many of us are itching to get ourselves psyched for what promises to be a season to remember with record snowfall already being predicted in the Alps amongst other top destinations. Many of you will already have booked your chalets and will be preparing to leave these dreary shores for something cooler and much more fun. Many of us are still trying to juggle other commitments and create a space for a decent winter break – to those of you good luck. In the meantime, to get you in the mood for the slopes, we’d recommend you head to this year’s Relentless Freeze Festival which promises to be the most exciting warm up you could possibly have to the winter season.

The Relentless Freeze festival is the UK’s only music come skiing come snowboarding event and promises to be absolutely spectacular for all of us party going ski and snowboarding fans out there. The festival has been running for a few years now and is the perfect mix of thumping tunes, dirty beats and incredible winter sports – this year all set at the slightly less wintery destination of Battersea Power Station in our very own London.

The biggest draw for many people will of course be the music but it’s the skiing and snowboarding that really will be turning the most heads as the cream of the international crop head to London to ride the 32 metre high jump being constructed from over 500 tonnes of real snow. Friday sees the international freestyle skiing competition which will feature the very best international skiers plus of course a lot of home grown talent. Britain’s very own Dom Harington letting us know just how epic the jump is “It’s quite scary at the top because you can feel it wobbles, but it’s an amazing scenery over the whole of London from up there.” Jacob Wester, Gus Kenworthy and Jossi Wells will also be taking the plunge along with a host of the other international superstars of the ski world promising to make the event as memorable as possible and to get you itching to make your first jump of the season. Saturday sees the snowboarders take to the jump with the best the world has to offer, competing for some epic prizes in the Europe v The World ski and snowboard battle. You can expect to see some incredible tricks from the likes of Jamie Nicholls and James Woods as they compete to win the title for Europe and complete the snowboard final world cup.

The music on the other hand promises to be equally stunning. The festival has seen some great names over the last 3 years including Cypress Hill and Pendulum but this year promises to top the lot with 4 stages competing to bring you the very best live music available anywhere in the country. Headliners are set to be Groove Armada and the Streets who will be performing one of their last ever gigs. These epic acts will no doubt be the biggest draws but with bands ranging from Daniel P. Carter to Dirtyphonics you’re really going to be spoilt for choice.

And that’s not even to begin to mention the whole host of other stuff that will be going on from the latest kit on sale to the chill out bars and après ski parties. This promises to be the best pre-season ski event on the planet so grab your tickets now before they’re gone.

Columbus Direct is a top travel insurance specialist founded in 1988. If you are planning a winter break this year, ski insurance from Columbus Direct can protect you on and off the slopes. You could save up to £40* on single trip travel insurance and you’ll have a 10% discount when you buy online compared to call centre prices. During the last decade, more than 12 million customers have trusted Columbus Direct with their travel insurance requirements.

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The 684th Lord Mayor Of London Is Sworn In With A Colourful Parade And Explosive Fireworks Display

Half a million people are expected to take to the streets of London for the 2011 Lord Mayor’s Show on Saturday 12th November. The show marks the beginning of a new mayoral year and welcomes the 684th Lord Mayor of London with a colourful parade which passes through the traditional financial district of the City.

It’s worth staying overnight at one of the many hotels in London so you can enjoy the spectacular fireworks display which ends the day’s celebrations with over half a tonne of fireworks set off at 5pm over the River Thames from a barge moored between Blackfriars and Waterloo bridges.

The day begins at 11am with an RAF fly-past and a riot of noise and colour as the procession, an annual tradition since 1215, sees 6,000 people, 150 horses, 20 marching bands, numerous floats and the magnificent gold State Coach carrying the Lord Mayor parade through the streets for three miles. The whole troop passes through the City, or Square Mile, travelling from Mansion House via St Paul ‘s Cathedral to the Royal Courts of Justice where the Lord Mayor swears allegiance to The Queen in a ceremony steeped in tradition.

A huge diversity of people participate with more than 100 organisations taking part in the procession ranging from dance troupes like the London School of Samba, a Camden based community project, to business groups like the Mexico Chamber of Commerce. All three armed forces are also represented, adding to the pomp and sense of occasion with marching music from military bands including the well-known Band of the Grenadier Guards.

To find and book a cheap hotel in London close to the Lord Mayor’s Show go to LondonTown.com where you’ll find great deals on hotels as well as useful information on events, restaurants, sights and attractions all within walking distance of the procession and fireworks.

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Choice Hotels Announces Opening Of New Comfort Brand Hotel In Luton

Choice Hotels has announced that the Royal Hotel Luton has been re-branded as Comfort Hotel Luton and is opening to its first guests this month.

Located on Mill Street, the Luton hotel is in the heart the town centre, ideally located for both the railway station and under three miles from Luton Airport providing both business and leisure travellers with excellent transport links.

The Comfort Hotel Luton is owned and operated by Mr Zaheed Nizar, Director for Landlet Hotel Group, under franchise agreement with Choice Hotels Europe. Previously independently run, the hotel has been re-furbished, doubling the number of bedrooms available. It now has 44 en-suite bedrooms and offers free wireless and internet access throughout. It also has 14 complimentary parking spaces for guests and the hotel bar is open to both guests and non-residents.

Maria Fazekas, General Manager, Comfort Hotel Luton, said: “We are pleased to be known as the Comfort Hotel Luton and to provide the town with an excellent three-star hotel.”

Duncan Berry, CEO UK, Choice Hotels Europe, commented: “We are delighted to see the Comfort Hotel Luton join our global network of more than 6,100 hotels. Furthermore, we believe that the Comfort brand will attract more guests to the hotel and help drive local economic growth for Luton.”

Choice Hotels Europe’s portfolio of franchised hotels offers business and leisure travellers a full spectrum from premium economy to luxury hotels. Choice Hotels Europe franchises nearly 500 hotels across Europe alone, including the Comfort Inn Vauxhall in London. Brands operated by Choice Hotels in Europe include Clarion which could be described as four-star, Quality, which sits in the three-star bracket and provides a mid-scale full service offering and Comfort, the largest Choice Hotels brand worldwide, known for value and reliability.

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New Report Shows Growing Trend in Online Travel Bookings – Mega.co.uk

For a struggling UK high street the news could not be worse. In recent years supermarket giants have battered the high street with many independent retailers going under as customers desert the high street butchers and bakers. Now a leading travel report shows that the high street travel market is now feeling the heat.

Around 2000 UK patrons took part in the survey which was conducted by ABTA (Association of British Travel agents) and the findings showed that a whopping 45% of us are using the internet to book our travel arrangements with only 26% opting for the personal service that is offered on the high street.

Furthermore, a trend against overseas holidays has continued and while Spain is still the firm favourite among UK holidaymakers other destinations such as France and Greece have been overtaken in popularity by the UK in news that is bound to worry eurozone areas reliant on UK tourist business.

A spokesman for discount code website Mega.co.uk stated: “the trend against the high street is certainly to be expected. We are seeing huge increases in travel traffic as users look for better deals on their holidays. Online travel agents are falling over themselves to give the Mega travel team discount codes and special deals to keep their booking levels up. Some online agents are offering savings of up over 20%. With rents and other costs to pay we are not sure the high street can compete on price which will make life even more difficult.”

Is it to late for the high street travel agent to bounce back? We certainly hope not, but unless the economy bounces back soon we could see more “To Let” signs popping up in 2012.

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The Scariest Attraction in Paris

There can be fewer more appropriate times than Halloween to visit the Paris Catacombs. The underground tomb holds the bones of some 6million Parisians, and has nearly two kilometres of tunnels to explore.

Newly reopened after an attack of vandalism on the bones, the Catacombs now boast improved lighting and a much more solid structure, so you can relax and enjoy your stroll around as the skulls stare blankly back at you from every wall.

Tickets cost just 8€ (4€ if you are under 26), well worth it for the 45 minutes spent enjoying one of the most interesting slices of Parisian history. Visitors should possess a decent fitness level, as there are 130 steps down into the tomb, and a further 83 to ascend at the other side.

The museum is open from 10am to 5pm every day except Monday, with the final admission granted at 4pm.

Hotels-paris has plenty of cheap hotels available for anyone visiting Paris at any time of year. Helvetia is just one example of the sort of quality you can expect.

For more information about the Paris Catacombs, visit www.catacombes-de-paris.fr/english.htm.

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Celebrate Halloween at Disneyland Paris

One of Europe’s premier family attractions, Disneyland Paris has been delighting children of all ages ever since it opened in 1992.

In 2008, the resort hosted its first Not-So-Scary Halloween party, which up until that point had only taken place in Florida.

Designed to appeal to all ages and, as you will have guessed from the name, kept at a fairly low level of scariness so as not to give younger children nightmares, this show is a truly magical way to celebrate Halloween.

There have been four Not-So-Scary parties scheduled this month, with the last one set to take place on October 28th.

Then, on Halloween night itself, Mickey, Minnie, Goofy and the gang host a wonderful Disney Halloween Party from 8:30pm until 1am.

Hotels-paris.co.uk offers hundreds of marvellous boutique hotels right throughout the city, with excellent transport links to the resort available from Gare du Nord. One of the best hotels available is Pershing Hall.

To find out how to experience the magic kingdom at its best this Halloween, visit visitdisneylandparis.com.

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Warner Leisure Hotels Reveals Exciting New Festive Breaks

Hotel company Warner Leisure Hotels has developed a new range of features for its Christmas and New Year breaks after listening to comments by its loyal customers about what they most enjoy.

Last year, the hotel group created a collection of seasonal holidays for guests to choose from and, thanks to recent feedback, has been able to develop an even more successful range of festive breaks.

“This year we’re hoping that guests staying with us over the seasonal period will experience their best Christmas yet, thanks to our new holiday packages,” said Jason Riseborough, Marketing Manager of Warner Leisure Hotels.

“We have listened to our previous guests and have developed a range of holidays with fantastic entertainment available at each of our hotels. Guests who stayed with us last year commented on some of the activities that they would have liked to take part in and we have done our best to include them for our 2011 festive breaks.

He added: “Christmas breaks can be booked at any of our hotels and each break will have entertainment from different musical groups, such as a Cliff Richard & The Shadows tribute act, The Dreamers and Mike Byrne & The Sunrockers. We’re very excited about what our guests will have to say about this year’s breaks and can’t wait to welcome people to our hotels for Christmas.”

Both the Christmas and New Year breaks that are currently being advertised on Warner Leisure Hotels’ website include full board, with an extravagant dinner available on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.

The hotel group also has a unique collection of ‘Twixmas’ breaks for guests to choose from, which have been designed to ease the lull that many people feel between Christmas and New Year. These breaks can be booked now on 27 and 28 December, with two and three-night stays available.

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Thistle’s Parc Hotel Welcomes Award Winning Chef Iain Inman

Thistle’s Parc hotel, located in the centre of Cardiff, is proud to announce the appointment of Iain Inman as the new executive chef of its restaurant, The Social. Bringing with him a wealth of experience, the talented chef will be supporting local suppliers; sourcing high quality products from the region to create his new and unique fine dining menu.

Iain’s new menu includes a series of Welsh dishes with a contemporary twist, such as the Grilled Rib Usk Valley Beef with Double Dragon Ale Sauce, Lemongrass Panacotta and Green Tea Sorbet.

With 15 years in the hotel and leisure industry, including positions held at two rosette winning restaurants; Pennyhill Park Hotel and Albannach Bar, Iain is set to bring his foodie flair to Cardiff, firmly placing The Social as a top gourmet restaurant among Cardiff hotels.

Darren Patt, Regional Operations Director of Thistle Hotels, commented: “We are delighted to have Iain on board as our Executive chef at The Social. The Parc has built up a fantastic reputation as a great dining destination in Cardiff, with The Social being recently awarded two prestigious AA rosettes. We will continue this run of success with the appointment of Iain – ensuring that The Social continues to top the league of must-visit restaurants in the area.”

For more information on The Social visit www.thistle.com or to book call 02920 785593. Interested parties can also follow the Thistle Hotels’ blog for frequent travellers at http://blog.thistle.com.

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The Rezidor Hotel Group Introduces “Club Carlson for Business”

The Rezidor Hotel Group, Carlson’s strategic partner in Europe, Middle East and Africa, introduced a new and compelling extension of the loyalty programme Club Carlson. “Club Carlson for Business” is designed for Small to Media Enterprises (SME) – businesses which do not have a global or national sales agreement with Rezidor or Carlson. With immediate effect, participating SMEs can save on their travel budgets; get rewards for their company, and benefit from recognition and rewards at 1,000 hotels worldwide.

“Club Carlson for Business offers more value to small and medium-sized businesses which are important clients for our hotels. At the same time, the programme helps us to build loyalty”, said John Kennedy, Vice President Marketing and Customer Relationship Management at Rezidor.

SMEs which enrol to the programme at www.clubcarlson.com/business earn loyalty points for their businesses and travellers for each hotel booking, and benefit from a 5% discount at Radisson Blu, Radisson Edwardian, Park Inn by Radisson, Park Plaza, and Country Inns & Suites hotels across the globe. They can change their collected points for Award Nights or MasterCard prepaid cards to pay for events, dinner or office supplies. Or, they can donate points to Rezidor and Carlson’s corporate charity organisation, the World Childhood Foundation.

“Club Carlson for Business” is currently available in Australia, Brazil, China, Denmark, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Canada, Mexico, The Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Singapore, Sweden, UK, Germany, France and the US. In a second phase, companies listed in other countries in Europe, Middle East and Africa will also be able to join.

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Kuoni Presents The Weather Programme On Monocle 24 Radio

Kuoni, the leading global travel service provider, exclusively presents the weather as part of the new radio station from the global affairs magazine Monocle – M24. Both passionate about quality and the zeitgeist, Kuoni and Monocle have formed a new partnership aimed at today’s most discerning listeners and travellers. The weather forecast on Monocle 24 provides reports for the world’s most important lifestyle centres and holiday destinations, appealing directly to Kuoni customers and travellers who are always on the move within these hotspots.

Monocle 24 is a new radio station from Monocle, the leading international magazine for all globally-minded people who are interested in the most important latest developments in design, fashion, business, culture, travel and global affairs. It offers a number of live shows about culture, city life, design, architecture, fashion and innovative entrepreneurship. On top of this, there is a carefully-selected line-up of music, news and weather reports around the clock. Like the magazine, the station addresses diverse and relevant global affairs topics for an international audience.

“We wanted to build a unique mix of smart talk, truly global news and a great soundtrack to live your day and night by,” says Monocle editor in chief, Tyler Brûlé. “Like the magazine, it will be knowing and witty, hard hitting, and off beat.”

Kuoni presents the weather forecast exclusively on Monocle 24, which is broadcast throughout the day as individual reports. The programme provides information about the world’s most important lifestyle centres and travel destinations and is aimed at listeners for whom travel between today’s hotspots is part and parcel of everyday life.

With Monocle, Kuoni has teamed up with a partner that appeals to the same target market – people who demand the very best in terms of quality and appreciate services that not only correspond to their very own lifestyle, but that are also in keeping with the times. Kuoni Concierge at the Bellevue in Zurich creates personalised, high quality holidays especially for these customers.

Remo Masala, Chief Branding & Marketing Officer for the Kuoni Group, explained that the most discerning travellers, who will be in Tokyo tomorrow and New York the day after, as well as those who want to spontaneously get away from it all on the other side of the planet can find out what the weather will be doing in an informative and entertaining way. Masala said: “What’s more, Kuoni Concierge also gets them there with exceptional tailor-made solutions that create a new and unique approach to travel.”

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Premier Inn Reveals That Parents Will Spend £3.4 Billion On Half-Term Holiday

Premier Inn, the UK’s biggest hotel chain, has revealed that families nationwide will be spending a staggering total of £3.4 billion on looking after the kids during the half-term holiday. It’s estimated that cash-strapped parents could be spending an extra £463 per household during the week-long holiday.

With the recent increases in gas and electricity prices, both having risen by an average of 17% (resulting in households paying an additional £190 a year), parents may need to look for new ways to tighten their belts to offload the cost of mounting bills on top of normal living costs like mortgages, food, clothing and expensive childcare for their brood.

Based on the average UK salary and the average costs of the following items, the expenses of a typical family of 4 over the half-term break will include:
– Unpaid leave per parent per day – £98
– Additional childcare costs per average family per week – £164
– Average attraction entry fee for the family for a day (e.g. zoo / theme park / castle) – £93
– Lunch / refreshments – £30
– Extras (e.g. treats / souvenirs) – £78

To give families a helping hand, Premier Inn has launched its biggest ever half-term sale, releasing a recession-busting room rate available at over 600 hotels across the UK.

Premier Inn Spokesperson, Claire Haigh, commented: “October half term is a great time for the family to spend some quality time together and by offering a quality, great value break, Premier Inn aims to help families feel refreshed and relieved of financial worry.”

With over 600 hotels nationwide, Premier Inn is at more locations than any other hotel chain in the UK. Each bedroom caters for up to two adults and two children (aged 15 and under) and includes an en-suite bathroom; a king size bed; remote control TV with Freeview; tea and coffee making facilities, and a spacious desk area with WiFi Internet access. And to start the day, Premier Inn offers an all-you-can-eat ‘Premier Breakfast.’

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YalaGO Travel Search Engine Launched in Middle East

YalaGO, a new travel search engine developed in the Middle East, has been launched. Yalago allows travellers to source the best possible travel deals from around the web in one streamlined, convenient and easy to use search engine.

YalaGO is a ‘metasearch’ engine that allows users to compare flights and hotel prices across hundreds of websites – visitors need only search once for a flight or hotel in order to get the best possible fares from across the globe, rather than visiting multiple websites to secure the cheapest or most convenient itinerary.

Unlike other travel search engines, YalaGO does not just provide a list of possible flights and hotels; it offers unparalleled visibility over all regional flight routings and carriers including low cost and published airlines, compared side by side in one search. The site also provides shares guest feedback on hotels to allow travellers to make an informed decision.

YalaGO is a non-transactional website, meaning it does not make bookings or take payment nor does it intend to – its only objective is to lead the online traveller to their ultimate booking destination and simplify the decision for them.

YalaGO will also be the first regional travel website with full social media integration with dedicated Facebook and Twitter pages, designed for on-going daily engagement with its audience and the development of new and unique travel related content so that visitors can remain in-touch with the latest travel news and offers

“The internet is crowded with great deals and offers, but it can be incredibly time consuming to try and navigate your way through them, and even if you take the time, the market is so dynamic, you can never be sure you are really getting the best value for your money,” said Ailsa Pollard Vice President of Business Development for dnata’s travel services. “YalaGO seeks to remove the time and confusion associated with traditional travel search engine; we believe your time should be spent packing for your trip, not searching for it.”

To celebrate the launch, YalaGO will personally kick start the travel plans for a handful of fortunate GCC residents by giving away five holidays in five weeks. In order to win a holiday (flight and hotel) for two to destinations including Bangkok, Limassol and The Maldives, entrants must correctly answer five questions about a popular destination for their chance to win.

For more information on how to win a holiday for two, interested parties can please visit www.yalago.com or find it on Facebook and Twitter.

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Aer Lingus Announces Extra Flights To And From Dublin

Aer Lingus has announced that it is to run extra flights to and from Dublin to London Gatwick airport.

These extra flights now mean that Aer Lingus has more frequency for this particular route than any other airline, after increasing its capacity for passengers on this service by 56%.

As part of its new winter schedule, Aer Lingus will now provide 6 flights per day between Dublin and London Gatwick, an increase from the 4 flights per day that had been offered last winter.

Under this new schedule, Aer Lingus’ first flight will leave Dublin at 06:40 (two hours earlier than last year), and will therefore be the first departure to London Gatwick by any airline. Similarly, the first flight to Dublin will leave London Gatwick at 06:50, making it the first departure to Dublin from London. It is hoped that a new 17:50 departure from London Gatwick will complement the existing 18:50 departure, and that this new flight will provide travellers forced to fly at peak times with an alternative option.

Similarly, the new 19:50 departure from Dublin also aims to provide an alternative for travellers searching for UK flight deals at a particularly busy time, and should complement the 20:50 departure nicely.

Finally, the new 12:55 departure from London Gatwick will bridge the gap between the existing 10:50 and 14:50 flights.

These new flights mean that Aer Lingus now provides 18 flights in each direction between Dublin and London every day (124 per week), with the airline now offering a greater frequency of flights between the two cities than any other company. Similarly, with a grand total of 27 flights each direction from the Republic of Ireland to London, Aer Lingus has the highest frequency of flights between Ireland and London than any other airline.

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New Antler Range Available At Luggage Express

Specialist baggage retailer Luggage Express has expanded its already extensive range with the addition of new suitcases from renowned manufacturer Antler.

The company, which has been providing baggage services to travellers all over the world for the last 30 years, recently added Revolution by Antler’s Ruby three-piece set, priced at under £200. The series boasts a number of design quirks aimed at making it more convenient for the commuter to carry their belongings around with them.

Among the features included are fully expandable cases, a two-wheel drive mechanism to ensure improved manoeuvrability, top and side handles to make them easier to lift, a locking trolley system and an exclusive, distinctive Revolution pattern to really set them apart from the crowd.

Luggage Express chairman David Elliott said he is confident the new suitcases will prove an instant and enduring favourite among travellers.

“We’ve always taken pride in offering practical, top-quality luggage at great prices and this latest range from Revelation by Antler is no exception,” he said.

“Much like ourselves, Antler have been offering outstanding products for many years and I have no doubt this new addition will prove popular with travellers.”

The Revolution Ruby range is now available from Luggage Express for just £199 and consists of three cases, ranging from 3kg to 4.8 kg in weight.

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Phuket.net – The Asian Hospitality & Travel Show 2011 is Taking Place in Phuket from 18 to 20 November

Phuket.Net is pleased to confirm the dates for the Asian Hospitality & Travel Show 2011. The show will take place from the 18th to the 20th November and will be held at the Phuket Marina. On 18th November there will be a trade-only show and on the subsequent two days the doord will be open to both trade and public.

The opening ceremony will take place at 11.00am, to be followed by the start of‘seller with buyer’ business appointments. At 1.00pm a guest speaker will host a seminar entitled, ‘Hospitality in the Social Media’ and at 4.00pm there will be a master-class for pizza professionals. This will be followed by a cocktail reception at 7:00pm at Les Anges.

The following day, the trade and public show will open at 11.00am with further‘seller with buyer’ business appointments. At 11.30am there will be a talk about the ‘Mind and Body Connection for the Hospitality Professional’ at the Sala Suddhavasa yoga centre. This will be followed by a SWANK Life art show by MAGpal artist at 1.00pm and the Vittoria Barrista challenge at 2.00pm. A pizza contest speed session has been organised, starting at 4.00pm and a ‘Thank You’ party and lucky draws will round off the evening at Bliss Beach Club.

On the final day of the show, the 11.00am opening will be followed by a BB&B Wine Wizard competition at 1.00pm and the Sobieska Bartender & Cocktail Mixing contest at 3.00pm. 5.00pm will see the second part of the pizza contest, with prizes awarded and a cocktail party at White Box will conclude the evening.

Via EPR Network
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Voyages Jules Verne Launches New Classic Journeys 2011 And 2012 Brochure

Voyages Jules Verne has announced the launch of its Classic Journeys 2011 and 2012 brochure, featuring a host of travel ideas including tours, cruises, trains, resorts and weekends.

In association with their longstanding overseas partners, Voyages Jules Verne is delighted to present this compendium of travel opportunities by air, boat and rail, including special sightseeing arrangements and many VJV special events. Among the selection of worldwide departures available until late 2012 are three new tours: Norway’s ‘Journey to the Arctic Circle’ to the remote regions of Canada; exploring Burma’s Irrawaddy River between Mandalay and Pagan in their ‘Road to Mandalay’ cruise and ‘The Eastern and Oriental Express’, a luxurious train journey aboard the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express including 5-star accommodation in Bangkok and Singapore.

Voyages Jules Verne are also able to offer travellers genuine price reductions of up to £400pp on selected tours in Peru, India, The Middle-East and South Africa such as ‘The Indian Maharaja’ travelling Bombay to Delhi, where travellers can save up to£300pp on selected dates. ‘The Lost World of the Incas’ tour discovering Machu Picchu through the Andes to Lake Titicaca offers a £400pp saving on selected dates.

Similarly, Voyages Jules Verne is rewarding advanced bookings with savings of up£300pp on selected tours such as Norway’s ‘Hurtigruten Coastal Voyage’, ‘Med by Private Motor Yacht’ cruising remote islands and the Riviera, plus ‘Cruising Sicily and Beyond’ discovering the breath-taking sights of Sicily, Capri, the Aeolian Islands and Malta.

Solo travellers can benefit from VJV’s on-going commitment to offer a choice of departures without financial penalty in its No Single Supplement programme. Tours with the single supplement removed on selected dates include; ‘Interlude in Interlaken’ to Switzerland, Egypt’s ‘A Royal Steamer Restored’ and the ‘Grand Tour of Sri Lanka’. Travellers should bear in mind that there is limited availability.

For a copy of the new Classic Journeys brochure, travellers can contact Voyages Jules Verne on 0845 404 3120, email sales@vjv.co.uk or visit the company’s website at vjv.com/brochures.

Via EPR Network
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