TRAVEL & TOURISM
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

Happy 40th birthday Singapore

Philippines slams Canada, UK advisories

Minimum room rate imposed

Happy 40th birthday Singapore

Marion Vogt

Many tourists enjoyed Singapore’s 40th birthday, aboard a fleet of luxury yachts organized by Singapore’s new marina, ONEº15 Marina Club, to watch the fireworks display on August 9.

The futuristic esplanade looks like a huge Durian, which has already become the common name among Singaporeans. The roofline serves as a shield from the sun and each ‘spike’ is designed and placed to redirect the sunlight while letting enough natural light through.

The club gets its name ONEº15 from its nautical position - one degree and 15 minutes north of the Equator, and is just ten minutes outside town in Sentosa Cove next to five star hotels and millionaire villas.

The newly opened (but not yet 100 percent ready) yacht center, will be a well located gateway to boating destinations around Asia, such as the Southern Island, Indonesia’s Nongsa Point Marinas and Bintan Resorts, Malaysia’s Sebana Cove, Port Dickson, Sibu Island, and Tioman Island.

The grand opening date for ONEº15 is set for the beginning of 2007 but their website is already up on www.one15 marina.com. Until all is completed, when you can berth your yacht in Singapore, we can recommend you to take the direct flight from Chiang Mai International Airport with Tiger Airways and spend a unique weekend in one of the most stylish cities of the world.


Philippines slams Canada, UK advisories

The Philippine Travel Agencies Association (PTAA) has deplored the renewal of travel advisories against the Philippines by Canada and the UK.

The Canadian travel warning cited the increased possibility of protests and demonstrations, particularly in Manila, due to recent political developments, while the UK advisory said it believed terrorists and criminal elements planned to kidnap foreign tourists from islands and coastal areas south of Panay in southern Philippines. Both advisories also warned of terrorist threats.

PTAA president, Marciano Ragaza, stressing the Philippines was a safe and viable destination for holidaymakers, noted that demonstrations had been peaceful and there had been no untoward incidents against tourists or foreign nationals.

He said, “We are particularly concerned with the UK’s revised warning considering that London, with all due respect to those affected by the recent bombings, seems to be a more dangerous place than Manila these days.”

Ragaza added, while he understood the rationale behind the advisories, the latter should reflect a more accurate picture of the current situation. He said, “These travel advisories and warnings have been quite unfair to the Philippines. There needs to be a more realistic and equitable manner in which they are worded.” (TTG Asia)


Minimum room rate imposed

The Malaysian government has made it mandatory for five-star hotels to impose a minimum overnight room rate of US$80 starting next April, Malaysia’s deputy prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak was quoted by local news agency Bernama as saying.

The minister said the Cabinet Committee on Tourism had agreed upon new guidelines at its first meeting, which he chaired on Tuesday.

He said, “To add revenue from tourists, the committee has decided for all five-star hotels to charge not less than US$80 per night for a room, effective from next year’s tourism contract season which is expected to start in April.”

He added that the minimum rate is appropriate as it is lower than neighboring cities, but is enough to ensure investor’s return on investments. (TTG Asia)


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