It seems every travel company wants a piece of the action in Cuba, and Alitalia is set to become the latest to start service to the Caribbean island.
Italy’s national carrier will begin twice-weekly, non-stop service between Rome Fiumicino Airport and José Martí International Airport in Havana beginning Nov. 29. The service will operate on Tuesdays and Saturdays on Alitalia’s Boeing 777 airplane.
“Tourism and business in Cuba have great growth prospects for Italians and this new service to this wonderful island will go toward fulfilling that ambition,” Cramer Ball, CEO, Alitalia, said in a statement. “The Havana flights is yet further confirmation of Alitalia’s strategy to build our long-haul network of intercontinental flights to give Italians greater opportunities to travel further afield for both leisure and business.”
The flights will depart from Rome every Tuesday at 9:05 a.m., and arrive in Havana at 3 p.m., Cuba time. On Saturdays, flights will leave Rome at 10:30 a.m., and arrive at 4:30 p.m. The return route will leave Havana on Tuesdays at 5 p.m., Cuba time, and land in Rome at 9 a.m., the next day. The Saturday flight will leave Cuba at 6:30 p.m., and arrive in Rome at 10:30 a.m., local time.
Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group announced plans to take over an existing hotel in Switzerland. The property is undergoing extensive renovations in preparation to open at the end of next year as Mandarin Oriental Palace, Luzern. The property was previously Hotel Palace Luzern, on the shores of Lake Lucerne and in the heart of the city; it originally opened in 1906.
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As part of Germany’s climate package, a plan to reduce emissions, the country will raise departure taxes at German airports. Taxes will go up as much as 60 percent, and are expected to raise up to €740 million. The funds will then be used to lower VAT on rail fares from 19 percent to 7 percent.
Welcome to Rhodes, a medieval treasure beautifully preserved throughout the centuries. Rhodes is the capital of the Dodecanese, an island ideal not only for those who want to relax, but also for those looking for an action-packed holiday! With its bright green hills, rich green valleys and uninterrupted line of golden beaches, Rhodes is truly a blessed place. “The sun island” has more sunshiny days and milder temperatures throughout the year than any other location in Greece. It is, after all, one of the country’s easternmost places and among the first to welcome summer on its impressive beaches. Add in the excellent facilities for tourism, the island’s special blend of cosmopolitan and traditional, and numerous cultural and archaeological sites, the most important being the Medieval (Old) Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and you’ve got the perfect holiday destination. While on Rhodes, don’t miss a daytrip to nearby Sými. An island of sponge divers and seamen, Sými used to have 30,000 inhabitants before the Second World War and was the richest island in the Dodecanese, despite its small size. Today, Sými attracts many visitors thanks to its beautifully preserved Neo-Classical buildings and the famous Archangel Michael monastery at Panormitis.
Norwegian Cruise Line took delivery of its newest ship, Norwegian Encore, ahead of its naming ceremony Nov. 21. The 1,100-foot-long ship boasts a guest capacity of nearly 4,000. Since Norwegian Cruise Line took delivery of the shi, Oct. 30, Norwegian Encore sailed from Germany to England before making its way to New York City, then Miami, where the christening ceremony takes place next week.
TAP Air Portugal is adding 15 new weekly flights from the United States and Canada by summer 2020, a new record for the carrier of 71 weekly flights between North America and Portugal.