On the Ground: I arrived at Newark and parked my car in the overpriced, $25-a-day monorail parking lot. There was a short line at the first- and business-class check-in that only took a few minutes to clear and I was quickly offered my boarding pass. At security, I used the first- and business-class line and I was in the Continental Presidents Club lounge in no time. I find the Presidents Club lounge invaluable; it offers a great opportunity to catch up on my reading, including Global Traveler, which is available in the lounge! (19/20)
On Board: Although Continental does not have totally flat-bed seats, the airline more than makes up for that with its service. Continental ranks high in passenger surveys because its onboard staff always seem to be friendly, attentive and professional. I chatted with my seatmate over a glass of champagne.We agreed that the champagne could be colder and informed the attendant who told us that he had just placed it on ice and it would be perfect in no time — the right answer. Once airborne, drinks were served with a selection of warm nuts. Then we were presented with the amenity kit and dinner menu. Dinner included a Boston lettuce and romaine hearts salad served with Parmesan peppercorn dressing. An Executive Meal option, in which dinner is presented on a single tray for expediency, was available for those wanting to sleep. I opted for the “full monty,” with a choice of duck, New York strip steak or seared salmon. I chose the steak, prepared with a pepper rub and a cabernet sauce. It was accompanied by roasted garlic mashed potatoes and green beans. After that came fruit and cheese, and a dessert cart that included a yummy ice-cream sundae. Prior to landing, a continental breakfast was offered which included fruits, cheeses and breads. (35/40)
The Experience: Continental’s BusinessFirst offers passengers the feel of first class for business-class pricing. The cabin at the front of the plane, where first class normally would be, has far less engine noise than the business-class cabin in a traditional three-class configuration.
Just before we landed at Charles de Gaulle airport, the purser walked though the cabin and thanked each passenger for flying Continental Airlines. This is what we all want as travelers: We pay for premium-class travel and seldom do we receive a simple smile and a thank you for selecting one carrier over the other. (38/40)
Total Score: 91/100
The Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) Convention 2021 will be unlike any other convention before it, as we come together in person for the first time since the business travel industry drastically changed and look forward to rebuilding and reshaping the future. GBTA Convention 2021 will bring all of us together to learn from experts and each other, in-person at Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, Nov. 17–19. The safety of our attendees is our top priority. View health and safety protocols.
I imagine that when writer Hans Christian Andersen mused, “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale,” he was standing at the edge of Copenhagen’s historic Tivoli Gardens, one of his favorite haunts, enlivened by the swirl of human happiness that surrounded him: children laughing; carousels spinning; games of chance played for prizes; lovers holding hands; hungry people whispering over sweets, hot drinks, beer and towering, open-faced smørrebrød, Denmark’s quintessential sandwich. That fairy tale lives on today at the second-oldest amusement park in the world, a spectacle of folly architecture, bakeries, gardens, rides, restaurants, puppet shows and joy ... and which also happens to be one of the city’s most storied places to convene for business.
The restored Park Hyatt Toronto reopened its doors, bringing luxury, sophistication and glamour alongside a nod to the hotel’s Canadian heritage. Alessandro Munge of Studio Munge collaborated on the hotel’s refresh, drawing inspiration from Canada’s seasons and natural landscapes.
Since its prestige for attracting the world elite grew in the 1960s, Greece remains the go-to destination for glittering holidays. Each step of the journey is enrobed in luxury, from culinary traditions with the highest standard of execution and name-brand, high-end shopping to first-rate wellness locales and elite accommodations, like 5-star hotels, private villas and yachts.
I recently dined at Irwin’s in Philadelphia. The restaurant is located on the rooftop of the Bok Building, a former school turned collective of small businesses, non-profits, artist workshops, a bar and restaurant. I previously visited Bok for the bar and yoga classes, and I was excited to experience the restaurant.
Cathay Pacific reaffirms its commitment to reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 with a pledge to use Sustainable Aviation Fuel for 10 percent of its total fuel consumption by 2030. The airline has made pioneering efforts in supporting SAF development for more than 10 years.
GBTA’s Convention 2021 will bring the business travel industry together for the first time in a long time. Once again, you’ll learn and connect with experts and each other, along with discussions with leading thinkers, entrepreneurs and change makers addressing the issues that matter most.
Arriving early afternoon in Puerto Rico, we jumped in an Uber and took a short, 15-minute drive from the airport to La Concha. As it was Tuesday, the streets were not too busy and the hotel lobby was calm. During the weekend, the scene likely would have been more bustling. We were greeted by a staff member who requested proof of vaccination and government-issued ID, and were given a wristband to indicate we were fully vaccinated. All guests are required to be vaccinated and wear masks at all times while moving around the hotel. Hand sanitizer stations were placed around the lobby, in elevators and in each common area.