Australia aviation on alert

July 31, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, News, PACIFIC

SYDNEY, 31 July 2017: Australia has foiled an Islamist-inspired terrorist plot to bring down an aircraft with an improvised explosive device, authorities said Sunday, after four people were arrested in raids across Sydney.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said the plot appeared to be “elaborate” rather than planned by a lone wolf, as security was strengthened at major domestic and international airports across the nation.

“I can report last night that there has been a major joint counter-terrorism operation to disrupt a terrorist plot to bring down an airplane,” Turnbull told reporters. Read more

Marriott names new team

July 20, 2017 by  
Filed under Hospitality, News, PACIFIC

SYDNEY, 20 July 2017: Marriott International announced a new leadership executive team for the Pacific region this week.

The team will oversee a portfolio of over 40 operating and pipeline hotels in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific.

The introduction of new roles and reporting structures across all operations, including sales and distribution, reflects Marriott International’s commitment to more than double its presence by 2020, with a target of 50 hotels for the region. Read more

Checked baggage: A beer can

July 13, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, News, PACIFIC

SYDNEY, 14 July 2017: A beer-loving Australian man has managed to check-in a can of lager as his only luggage on a domestic flight, with the brew arriving safely thanks to courteous baggage handlers.

To the amusement of ground staff at Melbourne airport, the can of Emu Export Lager was tagged and made its way along the conveyor belt to the plane as the only check-in item for passenger Dean Stinson on Saturday.

The high-flyer said he concocted the plan with a friend who worked at the airport “just for a laugh”, adding he was pleasantly surprised that his precious cargo survived the four-hour journey to Perth. Read more

Birds disrupt AirAsia flight

July 5, 2017 by  
Filed under Aviation, News, PACIFIC

SYDNEY, 5 July 2017: An AirAsia flight to Malaysia was forced to return to Australia shortly after take-off following a suspected bird strike, the carrier said Tuesday, the second incident involving the airline in the country in two weeks.

Passengers said the plane shook and bangs came from the right engine of AirAsia X flight D7 207 following its departure from Australia’s Gold Coast to Kuala Lumpur late Monday.

The flight carrying 345 passengers and 14 crew was diverted to Brisbane airport just north of the eastern city and landed safely, the Malaysian carrier said. Read more

Wyndham grows in Perth

June 29, 2017 by  
Filed under News, PACIFIC

PERTH, WESTERN AUSTRALIA, 29 June 2017: Wyndham Hotel Group is strengthening its presence in Western Australia with the announcement of its third Perth hotel, set to open in late 2018, and its first for Perth under the company’s Wyndham brand.

Situated on the corner of the Great Eastern Highway and Fitzroy Road, Wyndham LUX Perth will offer 120 rooms. Facilities include a swimming pool, gym, meeting rooms, a restaurant and a rooftop bar with views of the Swan River.

The hotel is located  6 km  Perth’s CBD, the WA Cricket Ground and Perth Stadium, and is within walking distance of the Swan River and Crown Casino. Read more

Dark side of New Zealand

June 28, 2017 by  
Filed under News, PACIFIC

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND, 28 June 2017: If you love stargasing and pitch black nights then head to Great Barrier Island, located 90 km from Auckland in New Zealand.

It has the distinction of being the first island in the world to be designated an International Dark Sky Sanctuary.

The International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) established the International Dark Sky Places conservation programme in 2001 to recognise ‘excellent stewardship of the night sky’. Read more

MOH Group expands to Melbourne

June 28, 2017 by  
Filed under News, PACIFIC

HONG KONG, 28 June 2017: Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group has signed a management contract for a new  hotel and branded residences to be developed in Melbourne, Australia.

The project is expected to open in 2023, and is the group’s first announced property in Australia.

The hotel and residences will be located on Collins Street, in a mixed-use 185-metre tower, which will play a part in the ongoing regeneration of the city’s central business district. Read more

A treasure too big to fail

June 27, 2017 by  
Filed under News, PACIFIC

SYDNEY, 27 June 2017: Australia’s under-pressure Great Barrier Reef is an asset worth AUD56 billion (USD42 billion) and as an ecosystem and economic driver is “too big to fail”, a study said Monday.

The World Heritage-listed reef is the largest living structure on Earth and its economic and social value was calculated for the first time in the Deloitte Access Economics report commissioned by the Great Barrier Reef Foundation.

Using economic modelling, it said the reef — bigger than Britain, Switzerland and the Netherlands combined — was worth AUD29 billion to tourism, supporting 64,000 jobs. Read more

Australia tackles throwaway food

June 19, 2017 by  
Filed under News, PACIFIC

SYDNEY, 19 June 2017: Australia’s first recycled supermarket is giving food destined for landfills a second chance, as the government embarks on a major push to cut down on waste costing the economy AUD20 billion (USD15 billion) a year.

The outlet run by food rescue organisation OzHarvest in Sydney takes surplus products normally thrown out by major supermarkets, airlines and other suppliers, and gives them away for free.

It is an attempt to tackle the mounting waste problem in Australia, home to 24 million people, where consumers toss out some 20% of food they buy with more than four million tonnes ending up as rubbish each year. Read more

PATA pledge on climate change

June 8, 2017 by  
Filed under News, PACIFIC

BANGKOK, 8 June 2017: The Pacific Asia Travel Association is reasserting its commitment to sustainable development across the entire spectrum of travel and tourism with a renewed pledge to support the Paris Accord within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

Embedded within this PATA advocacy theme is an acknowledgement and recognition that tourism must play an influential role in preserving the planet’s natural resources by adopting effective, sustainable practices.

“Our members, both public and private sector, are leading by example. They recognise that responsible business practices must embrace practical measures to offset the potentially irreversible damage to our planet caused by climate change,” said PATA CEO Mario Hardy. Read more

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