Amtrak announced plans to introduce 28 next-generation, high-speed trains in 2021, replacing those used on the current Acela Express service. The change is part of a $2.45 billion-dollar plan to upgrade the current Amtrak offerings in the Northeast corridor. New trains have one-third more seats, WiFi access, personal outlets and USB ports, adjustable reading lights at every seat and enhanced dining.
“Amtrak is taking the necessary actions to keep our customers, the Northeast region and the American economy moving forward. These trainsets and the modernization and improvement of infrastructure will provide our customers with the mobility and experience of the future,” said Joe Boardman, CEO and president, Amtrak.
New trains increase service on a 30-minute basis during peak times between New York and Washington, D.C. They also allow for increased service between New York and Boston. New infrastructure improvements can accommodate speeds of up to 186 mph on the routes. Amtrak assures the trains are additionally one of the safest designs available.
“As more people rely on Amtrak, we need modernized equipment and infrastructure to keep the region moving. These trainsets will build on the popularity and demand of the current Acela Express and move this company into the future as a leader in providing world-class transportation,” said Anthony Coscia, chairman of the board, Amtrak.
The Northeast corridor changes include upgrades to the Washington Union Station and Moynihan Station New York, as well as fleet maintenance facilities.
The first prototype of the new trains is expected to arrive in 2019. All of the current fleet on the route between Boston, New York and Washington, D.C., retire by the end of 2023.
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.
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.
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.
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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.
Experience a big-city hotel stay that doesn’t feel like your typical urban visit at Chicago’s Claridge House, nestled in the sought-after Gold Coast neighborhood. The hotel’s sophisticated décor and serene residential ambience foster the atmosphere of an oasis amid the hustle and bustle of a busy metropolis.