Hong Kong in the news Smart deals for clients trip contest for Hong Kong in the news Smart deals for clients trip contest for

first_img<< Previous PostNext Post >> Tuesday, April 4, 2017 Posted by Hong Kong in the news: “Smart deals” for clients, trip contest for agents Share Travelweek Group TORONTO — The Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) and Hong Kong’s Tourism Commission have teamed up to offer a wide range of “smart deals” to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR).Running under the heading “Celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Establishment of the HKSAR with Smart Deals”, over 40 deals and special offers will be available to visitors from now until Sept. 30, 2017 from a variety of local attractions and trade partners.These deals include discounts for attractions, transportation, sightseeing tours, dining and shopping, all of which have been compiled into a coupon booklet. To mark the 20th anniversary, the number ‘20’ features often: for example, 20% off purchases or HK$20 attraction tickets for visitors born in a particular month.The HKTB has published over 800,000 booklets, available at HKTB Visitor Centres, local hotels and travel agencies.“The HKTB appreciates the government’s continued support and all the participating attractions and trade partners for their generous offerings to enrich visitors’ in-town experience, all of which will encourage arrivals and draw attention to the attractions and experiences that give Hong Kong its unique appeal,” said Dr. Peter Lam, Chairman of the HKTB.More news:  Windstar celebrates record-breaking bookings in JulyFor more details, go to discoverhongkong.com/eng/plan-your-trip/latest-promotion/smart-deals.jsp.In other related news, Hong Kong Airlines has launched its ‘Win a Trip to Hong Kong’ contest alongside its partner HKTB and Regal Hotels. Agents can ‘Learn and Earn’ weekly and monthly prizes by answering a series of questions at hkg4agents.com. If answered correctly, they’ll be entered into the weekly and monthly lucky draws for $50 and $100 gift cards.Agents who sell Hong Kong Airlines and enter their ticket information not only increase their chances to win but will also be entered into the draw for a trip for two to Hong Kong on Hong Kong Airlines. The trip includes three nights’ accommodation in a superior room at a Regal Hotel and two city tours.last_img read more

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Air Canada announces strong 2017 results in annual report Air Canada announces strong 2017 results in annual report

first_imgAir Canada announces “strong 2017 results” in annual report Zara Martinez Friday, February 16, 2018 Tags: Air Canada << Previous PostNext Post >> About Latest Posts Zara Martinez Latest posts by Zara Martinez (see all) New Years Mastermind on AMA Waterways River Cruise – June 6, 2019 Attendance at TPI’s Summit events at an all-time high – April 24, 2019 The 2019 Travel & Vacation Show – June 22, 2018 MONTREAL – Air Canada achieved its fifth consecutive year of record EBITDAR in 2017, attributing its success to global expansion, a record 48 million customers and the hard work of 30,000 employees.Last year’s EBITDAR (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization, impairment and aircraft rent) reached $2.921 billion compared to the previous record full year 2016 EBITDAR of $2.768 billion, an increase of $153 million. Operating income in 2017 was $1.364 billion compared to $1.345 billion in 2016.Adjusted pre-tax income amounted to $1.158 billion in 2017 compared to $1.148 billion in 2016, while on a GAAP basis, the airline reported record income before income taxes of $1.279 billion last year compared to $877 million in 2016.“Our strong 2017 results underscore the effectiveness of our transformation strategy, as well as the success of our global expansion and the power of our comprehensive network. We profitably expanded our global network with 30 new routes launched, and carried a record 48 million customers while maintaining our focus on cost discipline and continuing to improve margins,” said Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Our achievements were driven by the hard work and commitment of our 30,000 employees and I commend them for enthusiastically embracing positive change at Air Canada.”Rovinescu also noted that in 2017, passenger revenue climbed 10% to a record $14.5 billion, and its unrestricted liquidity amounted to $4.2 billion at year-end.More news:  Rome enforces ban on sitting on Spanish Steps“Our transformation has made Air Canada profitable while reducing risk in many areas, such as level of indebtedness and pension obligations, the twin pillars of long-term sustainability.”Air Canada, he added, has undertaken a new Cost Transformation Program to secure an additional $250 million in savings by the end of 2019. This year, its wide-body fleet renewal will be completed, while its mainline narrow-body replacement program accelerates.Full year income statement highlights are as follows:In 2017, on capacity growth of 11.6%, record system passenger revenues of $14.471 billion increased $1.323 billion, or 10.1%, from 2016. This was driven by traffic growth of 11.3%, partly offset by a yield decline of 1.0%.In the business cabin, system passenger revenues increased $334 million, or 13.4%, from 2016 on traffic and yield growth of 9.8% and 3.3%, respectively.In 2017, operating expenses of $14.888 billion increased $1.556 billion, or 12%, from 2016, mainly driven by the increase in capacity and higher fuel prices year-over-year.Air Canada’s cost per available seat mile (CASM) increased 0.1% from 2016. Its adjusted CASM decreased 3.0% from 2016, in line with the 3.0 to 4.0% decrease projected in Air Canada’s Oct. 25 news release.Air Canada recorded adjusted net income of $1.142 billion, or $4.11 per diluted share in 2017 compared to adjusted net income of $1.147 billion or $4.06 per diluted share in 2016.More news:  Universal enhances popular Harry Potter vacation package with new perksCurrent outlook are as follows:Air Canada expects positive free cash flow in the range of $250 to $500 million in 2018, and is not planning any sale-leaseback transactions this year.For the first quarter of 2018, Air Canada expects adjusted CASM to increase 2.0 to 3.0% when compared to Q1 2017.For the full year 2018, Air Canada expects adjusted CASM to range between a decrease of 0.5% to an increase of 1.5% compared to the full year 2017. Approximately 0.75 percentage points of this range are driven by non-recurring costs for branding and new uniforms, customer service and technology investments, accelerated depreciation for Embraer 190 aircraft, and start-up costs of approximately $10 million related to its new loyalty program, scheduled to launch in 2020. Posted by Sharelast_img read more

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The history and science of the sesame seed The history and science of the sesame seed

first_imgNo related posts. Ed Bernhardt This food crop is one of the oldest cultivated plants in the world. It was a highly prized in Babylon and Assyria at least 4,000 years ago. In Hindu legend, the seeds are a symbol of immortality. The Egyptians and Persians ground the seeds into flour, while the Romans made a spread for bread. Today in China, Japan and India, it is an important source of cooking oil.center_img Sesame (Sesamum indicum ) or ajonjolí, as it’s known in Spanish, arrived in the New World tropics with early colonists, and many Latin American countries remain traditional producers of sesame seeds. Unfortunately, Costa Ricans aren’t big consumers of sesame, so it’s often hard to find fresh seeds for recipes that require sesame or for planting. Look in local health food stores for sesame seeds. Only fresh, unhulled seeds are used for planting.Sesame is a strong, slender annual, growing up to 6 feet with thin, green leaves. Its pastel white to pastel lavender flowers form panicles that produce capsules full of sesame seeds. The best planting months are April and May, although a second round can be sown in September or October. A 100 square-meter plot can produce 5 gallons of sesame seeds. Most gardeners tend to plant smaller, 5 or 10 square-meter plots during the year to harvest smaller quantities. Enrich the soil with aged compost fertilizer and sow the seeds in rows, 15 centimeters apart, with 30-40 centimeters between the rows. Caring for sesame can be tedious at first, since it needs to be thinned and maintained, weed-free, during the first month of growth. Another easier  method is to start the seeds in flats, and later transplant them to the garden when they reach 5-6 centimeters in height. Sesame matures in 90-120 days when the plants drop their leaves and the stems and seed capsules turn yellow-brown. This is the time to harvest the plants and dry them in the sun on a clean cloth. As the sun bakes the capsules, they pop open and release their seeds. Threshing the capsules with a stick gets most of the seeds from the capsules. Finally, the chaff is winnowed from the seeds, and they’re ready to be stored and used in the kitchen for delights, such as chocolate sesame balls, tahini butter or creamy, sesame salad dressing! Sesame seeds are a good source of vitamins C and E, calcium and unsaturated fatty acids. To make sesame butter, simply toast the seeds and run them through a hand grain mill or blender. Add water or olive oil until the butter is creamy and smooth. It’s great for salad dressing, vegetable sauces, or natural desserts with bananas, coconut and honey. Children love to work with sesame, too. They get to see one little seed turn into a beautiful flowering bush. Later, when the seed pods dry, open sesame! Thousands of new seeds appear. We’ve just harvested a good crop of sesame seeds and we’ll be offering them to interested gardeners in Costa Rica. Check our monthly newsletter on tropical gardening for all the details at: http://thenewdawncenter.info/blog.html. Life’s a garden! Facebook Commentslast_img read more

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Judicial Investigation Police raid municipalities in search for missing asphalt Judicial Investigation Police raid municipalities in search for missing asphalt

first_imgOfficers of the Judicial Investigation Police (OIJ) on Wednesday raided 10 municipalities and the offices of three construction companies as part of an investigation into irregularities in the management of asphalt donations made ​​by the National Oil Refinery (RECOPE) to the municipalities.Municipal offices were raided in cantons of the provinces of Cartago (Central and Jiménez), Guanacaste (Liberia), Puntarenas (Buenos Aires, Golfito, Paquera, Cóbano) and Heredia (Santa Bárbara, San Pablo and Barva). Agents were looking for evidence of errors in donation reports made by RECOPE.OIJ agents also raided three companies: CONANSA, Otto Corrales and Orosi Siglo XXI, where they seized documents and other potential evidence. There were no reports of arrests.The Prosecutor’s Office said details of the investigation would be announced later at a press conference. Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more

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That peece of work That peece of work

first_imgJack O’Brien So how did he get so smart? Well, one of the smartest people once said, “If I have seen further than others, it was because I was standing on the shoulders of giants.” Very modestly put, but premature, as his then-revolutionary theory of gravity turned out to be inadequate when it came to predicting the Transit of Venus. Which should be a lesson to us all to keep our cotton-pickin’ mouths shut when we get branded a hero. Indeed the ancient Romans, who had several good ideas, employed, at public expense, a slave to stand in back of a hero’s chariot as he staged his Triumph to whisper in his ear from time to time “Remember you are only human.”In those days it was the custom to recognize great achievement by awarding suitable candidates the title of god, with a little g, big G being reserved for Zeus, the father of all things.In these monotheistic times we have to be a bit more careful with how we use the term, although when the whole nation acclaims us for outstanding performance it is not easy to be humble. Which brings us to the question of Reward. Is it rational to compensate the CEO of a corporation, which has survived only by virtue of a Government bailout, by paying him $85 million a year? The CEO says “yes” because it was in his contract, and anyway he personally supervised the bailout, but we can scarcely refrain from pointing out that it wouldn’t have been necessary if he hadn’t been so incompetent or greedy in the first place.Which brings us to the question of Forgiveness of Sins. This has always been a tricky argument, as we cannot hide our suspicion that it is just too easy to cheat when you know you will be forgiven, provided you choose your words carefully. I myself am of the opinion that you should be stripped of every conceivable advantage you gained, plus a stiff fine to encourage you not to repeat the offense. But others disagree, proposing a range of options from permanent incarceration to a reward for initiative. Perhaps, as one critic put it, I should hush mah mouf.That about sums up the lesson for today, which is that we may well have been all born equal, but some are more equal than others, and we just have to put up with it. Facebook Comments Isn’t it Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, who in the quaint English of his day says, “What a piece of work is Man…” Shakespeare couldn’t have put it more succinctly because Man, in the gender-neutral sense, has contrived with some help from Nature to melt the icecaps, walk on the Moon and describe the composition of the Universe within milliseconds of its creation. Yet he has never lost his essential humanity, being still perfectly capable of spilling soup on his shirtfront or breaking wind in church.center_img No related posts.last_img read more

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32 deaths reported during holiday week 32 deaths reported during holiday week

first_imgCosta Rica’s Red Cross reported that a total of 32 people died during Easter Holy Week, 10 deaths more than in 2012.Of that number, 12 people died during armed assaults, up from two deaths last year.Five people died as a result of drowning, three less than in 2012. Traffic accidents resulted in 13 deaths.Four people died from various causes, including poisoning and burns.Red Cross officials also reported that more than 20 people were rescued from drowning on beaches and rivers, and another 70 were sent to hospitals from various other causes. Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more

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Costa Ricas communications minister resigns after presidential flight tied to businessman with Costa Ricas communications minister resigns after presidential flight tied to businessman with

first_imgAnnouncing his resignation Wednesday evening, Communications Minister Francisco Chacón, speaking at a press conference, said he “was deceived by a representative of the Canadian firm THX Energy,” the company that he earlier said had “collaborated” with a private jet that President Laura Chinchilla used for a trip to Peru over the weekend.Chinchilla and a small entourage traveled to Peru – departing Friday – to attend the wedding of Vice President Luis Liberman’s son. The trip was not included in a previously distributed official presidential agenda, and journalists only learned about it the day the president left. While she was in the South American country, Chinchilla met briefly with Peruvian President Ollanta Humala on Monday. She was accompanied by Chacón, his wife, Anabel González – Costa Rica’s minister of foreign trade – and other advisers.In a brief statement on Wednesday, Chacón said that the person he met to coordinate Chinchilla’s trip in the private jet owned by THX Energy identified himself as Ricardo Ofalán, but that his real name is Gabriel Ricardo Morales Fallón, a Colombian businessman currently under investigation for alleged links to Colombian drug cartels.Chacón admitted he “did not verify the identity of the company’s representatives,” and that he was not responsible for the arrangements for the use of the plane.But as news of the strange logistical arrangements and the last-minute nature of the trip surfaced over the weekend, Chacón sought to downplay the controversy, saying earlier in the week that it was simply a matter of  “collaboration between a private-sector company and the president.”THX Energy also supplied Chinchilla with a private jet when she attended the funeral of former Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez on March 8, in Caracas.On Wednesday, Libertarian Movement Party lawmaker Patricia Pérez filed a criminal complaint at the Chief Prosecutor’s Office against Chinchilla for alleged conflict of interest and for allegedly receiving gifts from the Canadian company. The government Public Ethics Office also opened an investigation of Chacón and González.According to the daily La Nación, Morales has entered Costa Rica 100 times in the past five years and solicited residency here. The online publication that broke the story, crhoy.com, said that Morales is now a nationalized Costa Rican and lives in the southwestern San José suburb of Santa Ana.  According to crhoy.com, Morales was a co-founder and former legal representative of Thorneloe Energy – which later changed its name to THX Energy – and was questioned by authorities in Colombia over suspected money laundering. Colombian press reported that Morales first appeared on investigators’ radar in 2003, after he imported millions of dollars of Skoda brand luxury automobiles, crhoy.com reported. He ran into legal troubles again in 2009, after allegedly misappropriating oil company funds. Morales also was investigated for alleged links to a drug-trafficker nicknamed “Chupeta,” according to La Nación, citing Colombian media.  Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more

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Rainforest Radio to air exclusive interview with Sea Shepherds Paul Watson Rainforest Radio to air exclusive interview with Sea Shepherds Paul Watson

first_imgOn June 5, maverick conservationist and Sea Shepherd founder Paul Watsonwrote a biting blog titled “A Year of Living Precariously,” a summary of the unexpected and dangerous twists and turns that being an ocean warrior entails.He spared no love for Costa Rica, which along with Japan, has kept Watson on the run from charges that he and his crew tried to murder a crew of Costa Rican shark-finners in their tiny boat off the Pacific coast of Guatemala in 2002.“May 18th marked a full year since Japan and Japan’s co-conspirator Costa Rica had me detained in Frankfurt, Germany on politically motivated charges,” Watson wrote. “However despite the fact that Japan has invested close to thirty million dollars to destroy Sea Shepherd and myself, I remain free and Sea Shepherd continues to be an effective organization.”Not only is Watson still a free man, but he’s still fighting as only Sea Shepherd can – whether you agree with the group’s tactics or not – stepping in where the world’s governments fail to protect the oceans. And last month, Watson announced “Operation Relentless,” Sea Shepherd’s 10th campaign to the Southern Ocean to battle the Japanese whaling industry, the subject of Animal Planet’s popular “Whale Wars” TV series.On Wednesday, Jani Schulz, president of Costa Rica’s Rainforest Radio, will broadcast an exclusive interview with Watson, in which the fiery 62-year-old captain is expected to make some newsworthy announcements, including updates about his ongoing charges in Costa Rica for attempted shipwrecking over the 2002 incident.“One thing I know is that if oceans die, we die. So one of the topics that we’ll hit on is personal responsibility, that we can’t expect governments and NGOs to solve all the world’s problems. Every single person needs to become active,” Schulz told The Tico Times. “I think a lot of interesting things will come out in this interview.”Another issue that is certain to come up is the May 31 murder of Costa Rican turtle conservationist Jairo Mora, which again catapulted Costa Rica into the international limelight – for all the wrong reasons – much like Watson’s arrest last year in Germany. Watson has already pledged $30,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of Mora’s killers – thought to be poachers, drug traffickers or hit men. International groups have collected nearly $60,000 in reward money, but a month later, Costa Rican authorities still have made no arrests in the case.“There are some serious issues he’ll be talking about, so if you care about the environment, you need to tune in,” Schulz said.The interview airs at noon on Wednesday, Costa Rica time, or 11 a.m. on the west coast of the United States. Tune in at rainforestradio.com or 960 AM in Costa Rica.And to clarify one point, Schulz added, “No, I don’t know where he is.” Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more

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AP PHOTOS Young immigrants seek the right to work AP PHOTOS Young immigrants seek the right to work

first_img Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Here are images of the throngs of immigrants who lined up across the U.S.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Top Stories Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Sponsored Stories center_img 4 must play golf courses in Arizona 0 Comments   Share   Men’s health affects baby’s health too Arizona families, Arizona farms: providing the local community with responsibly produced dairy (AP) – Wednesday brought the first chance for young illegal immigrants to prove they have earned the right to live legally in America.The Obama administration’s so-called “DREAM Act” program could give hundreds of thousands of immigrants work permits instead of deportation notices.“Finally!” said Evelyn Medina, 23, who was all smiles as she left the Honduran consulate in Washington, clutching her passport and other paperwork.last_img read more

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Mexican newspaper attacked again by armed men Mexican newspaper attacked again by armed men

first_img Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Top Stories Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day On Monday, attackers shot at federal police officers guarding the building. No one was injured.The newspaper’s offices have been attacked periodically by gunmen since 2009. No one had been hurt until Wednesday. The newspaper decided after the first attack in 2009 to stop all investigative journalism.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Comments   Share   Clean energy: Why it matters for Arizona Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvementcenter_img Sponsored Stories PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Mexico (AP) – Mexican authorities say gunmen have attacked a newspaper in the northern city of Torreon for the third consecutive day, killing a bystander and wounding two federal police officers guarding the building.Coahuila state prosecutors say the attack on the offices of El Siglo de Torreon happened Wednesday afternoon. Just hours earlier, the newspaper published a story detailing an attack on Tuesday in which gunmen wielding automatic rifles fired at least 30 shots at the building’s main door from a car. Arizona families, Arizona farms: providing the local community with responsibly produced dairy Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Get a lawn your neighbor will be jealous oflast_img read more

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From fossil fuels to epidemics What the G7 decided From fossil fuels to epidemics What the G7 decided

first_img New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Facing forward from left, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, European Council President Donald Tusk, French President Francois Hollande, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, U.S. President Barack Obama, Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim and British Prime Minister David Cameron look to German Chancellor Angela Merkel as they finish posing for the Family Photo with the Outreach guests during the G-7 summit in Schloss Elmau hotel near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, southern Germany, Monday, June 8, 2015. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)n Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober ___WORKING TO END CORRUPTIONBritish Prime Minister David Cameron went into the summit arguing that world politicians should use the scandal engulfing FIFA, soccer’s governing body, to break an “international taboo” over pointing the finger at corrupt organizations. There was little talk of corruption in the summit’s closing declaration this year but next year’s host, Japan, pledged to make it a key issue.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Top Stories BERLIN (AP) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel went into the Group of Seven summit in the Bavarian Alps with a broad agenda, but combating climate change was a top priority. At the two-day meeting of the leaders of Germany, Britain, Canada, France, Italy, Japan and the U.S., the G-7’s most eye-catching pledge was a commitment to move away from using fossil fuels by the end of this century.Here’s a look at major issues the G-7 discussed this year: 4 sleep positions for men and what they mean Sponsored Stories How Arizona is preparing the leader of the next generation ___FIGHTING CLIMATE CHANGEMerkel had pressed for the ambitious commitment to “decarbonize” the world economy, hoping to help generate momentum ahead of a U.N. conference in December on fighting global warming.The G-7 countries recommitted to existing pledges, such as one to mobilize $100 billion in public and private funding by 2020 to tackle the impact of climate change. They also agreed to press for a 40 percent to 70 percent reduction by 2050 in the global emission levels of the greenhouse gases blamed for global warming compared with 2010, recommending the “upper end” of that range.___UKRAINE AND SANCTIONS AGAINST RUSSIAThe Western democracies used the G-7 summit to present a united front on Russia, which they ejected last year from what used to be the G-8 following its annexation of the Crimean peninsula. They made clear that any lifting of sanctions against Russia for its actions in Ukraine depends on Moscow fully implementing a peace accord brokered in Minsk in February by Germany and France. They also said the sanctions could be toughened if needed.However, no formal decisions were made on the sanctions — and none were expected, since they were imposed by the individual countries and the 28-nation European Union. Some differences also remain among the Western nations over whether to provide Ukraine with military assistance. Comments   Share   Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall ___IMPROVING GLOBAL HEALTHThe G-7 leaders said they will support plans to better fight outbreaks of deadly diseases such as Ebola, and aim to lift 500 million people out of hunger and malnutrition by 2030. They said they would better coordinate to fight future epidemics and work to ensure the rapid deployment of expert teams to needy areas.___FIGHTING TERRORThe G-7 met with the leaders of Iraq and Nigeria, both countries facing violent Islamic extremist insurgencies, and reaffirmed their commitment to defeating the Islamic State group “and combatting the spread of its hateful ideology.” President Barack Obama, however, said the U.S. still lacks a “complete strategy” for training Iraqi forces to fight the group.___WHAT TO DO ABOUT GREECEThe impasse in negotiations to unblock international financial aid to cash-strapped Greece wasn’t officially on the agenda but overshadowed G-7 discussions about the global economy. Obama said Greece needs to be “serious about making some important reforms.” Merkel, whose country is a leading creditor to Greece, said “there’s not a lot of time” and pledged to work intensively on a solution. Check your body, save your lifelast_img read more

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Thai palace official arrested for lese majeste charges Thai palace official arrested for lese majeste charges

first_img New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies BANGKOK (AP) — A royal household official attached to the Thai crown prince’s ex-wife on Thursday turned himself in over multiple charges, including defamation against the country’s monarchy.Montri Sotangkur, a senior palace official under former Princess Srirasmi, faces up to 20 years in prison from four arrest warrants, Bangkok police chief Lt. Gen. Siwara Rangsiphrammanakun said.He was accused of abuse of authority by claiming royal connections in demanding positions with two of Thailand’s influential private enterprises. 4 ways to protect your company from cyber breaches Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober 5 greatest Kentucky Derby finishes Top Stories How do cataracts affect your vision?center_img Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Sponsored Stories Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Thailand’s lese majeste law is considered the harshest in the world, with those accused of defaming, insulting or threatening the monarchy facing jail terms ranging from three to 15 years on each count.Several family members of former Princess Srirasmi were detained in a high-profile corruption scandal late last year, shortly before she relinquished her royal title.National police chief Gen. Somyot Poompanmoung said police will investigate if Montri was also involved in other graft cases.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. 0 Comments   Share   last_img read more

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French app hopes to link Muslim faithful with prayer sites French app hopes to link Muslim faithful with prayer sites

first_img Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Four benefits of having a wireless security system They created an online community they called Salatsurfing, building an app and website to link the faithful with people willing to donate space. Salatsurfing lists about 150 spaces — homes or businesses — throughout France. About 2,500 people have joined since the geolocation service started in September.Sofiane Benabdallah, one of the founders, says the idea is similar to Airbnb or Uber — with one crucial difference: The service is free and the space is donated.“By no means do we want to replace mosques. The mosque’s role is clearly identified in Islam’s precepts,” said Yosra Farrouj, another of the founders. “Salatsurfing is really an alternative in the way we allow someone to pray when a mosque is closed or there is no mosque around.”Otmane Aziz, whose meeting room is among the listings, said it was natural to donate it as a prayer space.“It’s a question of brotherhood, solidarity. To me, it seems right,” Aziz said.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Sponsored Stories Comments   Share   Top Stories New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies In this photo taken on Tuesday, June 2, 2015, three of the five founders and creators of an online community and app called “Salatsurfing”, Sofiane Benabdallah, left, Yosra Farrouj, center, and Amazigh Benabdallah pose for a photo in Marseille, southern France. The country has relatively few Muslim prayer spaces compared with the population – one for every 1,200 by some estimates – and the group of five friends decided they could do something about a problem they found themselves facing every day. They created an online community they called Salatsurfing, building an app and web site to link the faithful with people willing to donate space. Salatsurfing lists about 150 spaces – homes or businesses – throughout France. (AP Photo/Claude Paris) MARSEILLE, France (AP) — They simply wanted a place to pray, as required five times a day for faithful Muslims. But in France, that’s not necessarily simple.The country has relatively few Muslim prayer spaces compared with the population — one for every 1,200 by some estimates — and a group of five friends from a variety of backgrounds decided they could do something about a problem they found themselves facing every day. Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Natural spring cleaning tips and tricks for your home 5 ways to recognize low testosterone Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving soberlast_img read more

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Journalist jailed in Zimbabwe for starting newspaper Journalist jailed in Zimbabwe for starting newspaper

first_img Mesa family survives lightning strike to home Although several privately owned newspapers are in circulation, the government is the largest media owner, running over a dozen national and community newspapers as well as enjoying television monopoly.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Sponsored Stories Top Stories How men can have a healthy 2019 Four benefits of having a wireless security system New Valley school lets students pick career-path academiescenter_img 0 Comments   Share   HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) — The attorney for a Zimbabwe journalist says his client was convicted of publishing a newspaper in a southern town without government permission and sentenced to eight months in prison.Several newspapers and radio stations have already been closed under Zimbabwe’s harsh media laws and dozens of journalists have been arrested over the past 15 years.Defense lawyer Martin Mureri said his client Patrick Chitongo was only putting together a dummy version of the paper to apply for a license. They plan to appeal the conviction. Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywalllast_img read more

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MATCH warns of fake FIFA 2010 tickets MATCH warns of fake FIFA 2010 tickets

first_img<a href=”http://www.etbtravelnews.global/click/28f26/” target=”_blank”><img src=”http://adsvr.travelads.biz/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=10&amp;cb=INSERT_RANDOM_NUMBER_HERE&amp;n=a5c63036″ border=”0″ alt=””></a> Official FIFA 2010 ticket issuers MATCH has warned of fake tickets being sold for the 2010 World Cup to be held in South Africa, and is reminding the industry to only book with accredited operators.Zurich-based MATCH is the professional services company selected by FIFA to provide ticketing, accommodation and event information.  In turn FIFA has also approved a handful of Participating Tour Operators (PTO) to sell packages which include tickets to games.“Sadly, however, many unauthorised operators are exploiting the excitement and passion of the FIFA World Cup to lure unsuspecting customers to South Africa with promises of illegitimate game tickets and hospitality,” said MATCH in a statement to the industry.“FIFA has appointed a number of reputable tour operators to distribute game ticket-inclusive tour packages. PTOs are the only tour operators who have a valid source of game tickets.”Agents have been warned that they should only work with PTOs to distribute packages, and be wary of operators offering game ticket-inclusive travel packages who do not hold PTO status.MATCH says Participating Tour Operators can be identified by their use of an approved authenticating logo. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: W.Xlast_img read more

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Waldorf Astoria honors 1950 room rates for lovebirds Waldorf Astoria honors 1950 room rates for lovebirds

first_imgA couple who spent their wedding night at New York’s Waldorf Astoria Hotel in 1950 were allowed to book a suite for their anniversary last week at the same rate they paid 60 years earlier. As newlyweds in 1950, Robert and Edith Scalise splashed out spending US$23.10 on their room, US$3.47 on their restaurant bill and they also racked up a phone bill which cost 15 cents. These days, the same hotel expenses could have cost the couple around US$600 to US$$1000. In honor of the Long Island lovebird’s long and happy life together, the hotel offered them a suite to celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary, and honoured the same price they paid in 1950. Edith Scalise said, “They treated us like celebrities. It was wonderful … We couldn’t afford to stay in this hotel again after that night.”We used to come every once in a while for dinner, but I’ve been having this dream to stay here for years.” The couples stay at the famous hotel last week capped off a fairy-tale day in which they stood side by side in St.Patrick’s Cathedral to renew the wedding vows they first made 60 years ago before dancing cheek to cheek like they did when they were teenagers.”These 60 years were the happiest years of my life,” Robert said to his wife at the altar of the Lady Chapel in the rear of the majestic Fifth Ave. cathedral.It’s been an amazing journey. I married my childhood sweetheart, I always knew I loved her, I always knew I wanted her.””I guess we have kind of danced through life,” Edith added. “The secret is not to give up at the first fight.””I’m so blessed to be married to you,” she said to her husband, as they exchanged rings for a second time.”So am I,” he replied. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: C.Flast_img read more

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The rise of the travel tech frenemy TRAVELtech 2011 The rise of the travel tech frenemy TRAVELtech 2011

first_imgWhether it is American Airlines taking on the GDSs, the explosion of travel deals on daily deal and group buying sites or Google buying ITA, the relationship between travel and technology is at times like a bad marriage, according to the TRAVELtech producer.At yesterday’s TRAVELtech conference in Sydney, producer Martin Kelly justified the tongue-in-cheek theme: Best of Enemies.Telling delegates he had received a suggestion that the theme of the conference might be better titled, ‘Friends (or enemies) with Benefits’ given the, sometimes forced, relationships between ‘enemies’ in the changing travel landscape. “The fabulous friction is to continue,” Mr Kelly said at the opening of the conference.“Everyone needs each other too much.”Read more about news from TRAVELtech on e-Travel Blackboard. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: G.Alast_img read more

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2014 Queensland Tourism Awards 2014 Queensland Tourism Awards

first_imgQueensland’s AUD$23 billion tourism industry has paid tribute to its dedicated individuals at a gala ceremony for the 30th annual Queensland Tourism Awards.The event was presented by Queensland Airports Limited in partnership with Tourism and Events Queensland.The 2014 Queensland Tourism Award presentations included 30 Gold, 28 Silver, 22 Bronze, two individual awards for outstanding achievements and one Commendation across 32 award categories.Held at Brisbane’s Royal International Convention Centre, 900 guests attended to celebrate the 30 year history of the awards.Queensland Tourism Industry Council (QTIC) chief executive Daniel Gschwind, congratulated all winners and entrants in the 2014 Queensland Tourism Awards.“The Queensland Tourism Awards give businesses and individuals an opportunity to take pride in their contributions to the industry, raise the standard of quality tourism experiences throughout the state and strive for ongoing improvements to achieve our tourism goals,” Mr Gschwind said.The new Hall of Fame inductees for the year were Brisbane’s Emporium Hotel and Gold Coast’s Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat, having both won Gold in their selected category for three consecutive years.Minister for Tourism, major events, small business and the Commonwealth Games Jann Stuckey, said the Queensland Tourism Awards are a benchmark for industry excellence.“On behalf of the Queensland Government I would like to commend all of the award winners as well as the Queensland Tourism Industry Council for their dedication to the future prosperity of the industry,” Ms Stuckey said.The Queensland Tourism Awards are judged by a panel of industry experts who volunteer their time to assess written submissions and travel throughout Queensland to experience the amenities and services of nominated businesses.Gold winners from business categories in the 2014 Queensland Tourism Awards will gain automatic entry into the Qantas Australian Tourism Awards to be held in April 2015 in Adelaide.Source = ETB Travel News: Nick Harrislast_img read more

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Australians rank travel over property in new survey Australians rank travel over property in new survey

first_imgThe ultimate Australian dream has been identified in the latest Yellow Brick Road Wealth Management Hopes and Dreams Survey.The survey analyses the hopes and dreams of over 6,500 Australians in an aim to better understand the nation’s financial goals and priorities.Although the results differ substantially between states and territories, the survey revealed for Australians in general the ultimate dream is to travel the world.The survey required respondents to choose from thirty aspirations under several categories.Lifestyle dreams were the most popular with 24 per cent of respondents choosing this category, followed by property (23 per cent), family (21 per cent), money (13 per cent), career (11 per cent) and retirement (9 per cent).From these categories, dreams to travel the world surpassed buying a first home, controlling debt and paying off a mortgage.Yellow Brick Road executive chairman Mark Bouris said the results represent a nation that values lifestyle, property and entrepreneurship.“Australia is a nation of holidaymakers and globetrotters and the research showed that we haven’t lost our travel bug,” Mr Bouris said.“People across the country told us their biggest dream is to see the world.Mr Bouris said some unique differences were found when comparing the individual results from states and territories.“For example, Western Australians value lifestyle and want to jet set around the world, own a boat, get into shape and get a more exciting job,” he said.“And in the Northern Territory one of the biggest aspirations is the desire to move and make a seachange.”He also highlighted the importance of seeking appropriate advice on making financial decisions.“Australians are known to value quality lifestyle and there is nothing wrong with wanting to take an annual overseas holiday.“However, many people don’t achieve these goals due to their failure to plan.“Seeking advice and creating a plan can make turning your dreams into reality a whole lot easier than you imagine.” Find out how your dreams compare to the rest of the nationSource = ETB Travel News: Brittney Levinsonlast_img read more

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AccorHotels Celebrates 25 Years in Australia AccorHotels Celebrates 25 Years in Australia

first_imgAccorHotels Celebrates 25 Years in AustraliaAustralia’s largest hotel operator, AccorHotels is celebrating 25 years in Australia and is inviting partners, guests and employees to join the celebrations throughout 2016.AccorHotels launched in Australia with the opening of Novotel Sydney Darling Harbour in July 1991.Darling Harbour, which itself had opened in 1988, was previously nothing more than an industrial freight dock, in what was considered a neglected part of the city. Many thought that Darling Harbour and the hotels there – including AccorHotels’ ibis and Grand Mercure Apartments which opened in 1995 – would become white elephants, but the Group had the vision to see Darling Harbour’s potential as a prime tourism asset that is still making headlines.A quarter century after its humble Darling Harbour beginnings, AccorHotels is continuing to play a role in the precinct’s future with the new-build luxury Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour hotel expected to open in 2017 as part of the $2.5 billion transformation of the precinct.In 25 Years, AccorHotels helped change the face of the Australian hotel industry, introducing a range of innovations and brands that covers the full spectrum from luxury to economy and now reaches all corners of the country.AccorHotels is a significant contributor to Australia’s tourism sector, employing more than 10,000 staff in over 200 hotels, and its 1.62 million loyalty members (1 in 15 Australians) of Le Club AccorHotels continues to increase year on year.Michael Issenberg, Chairman and CEO AccorHotels Asia Pacific said, “We’ve been on an incredible journey in Australia, starting with one hotel to become the number one operator with over 200 hotels in every state and territory.“We have continued to innovate and expand our business over the years, by introducing new hotel brands including Mercure, Sofitel and Pullman and acquired hotel companies to fuel our growth,” he said. “Along the way we played a role in establishing key tourism hubs such as Darling Harbour and Sydney Olympic Park and set new benchmarks in corporate social responsibility.“Of course our success would not be possible without the strong relationships we have forged with hotel owners, franchisees and industry partners. I am also very proud of our staff, many of whom have been with the company since we started, because they are the ones who provide our guests with exceptional experiences every day.”Chief Operating Officer AccorHotels Pacific, Simon McGrath said, “Testament to our growth has been the thousands of people who have built successful hospitality careers with us over the years. Our nation-wide reach has given staff opportunities to develop their skills and gain experience working across a variety of brands and destinations. We’re also extremely proud of our work in the Indigenous space, providing great employment and training opportunities for Indigenous Australians.“Embracing new technologies and innovation remains key to our success, and our digital strength is complemented by continual enhancements to our loyalty programs. People have always been at the very core of everything we do and our obsessive focus on the guest has never been stronger as our network continues its rapid growth, edging towards our 250thhotel in Australia.“Today, AccorHotels Australia is a strong business, poised for future growth and our customer satisfaction ratings are amongst the highest in the world.“We thank our loyal guests, hotel and industry partners for their continued support and we look forward to an exciting year of celebrations,” said Mr McGrath.To mark the 25-year milestone, AccorHotels Australia will host a range of activities and celebrations throughout 2016. From brand campaigns to celebrating staff and saying thank you to hotel partners and loyalty members, there will be a variety of initiatives and events to excite, reward and express gratitude to supporters. AccorHotelsSource = AccorHotelslast_img read more

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