Virtuoso® Unveils The Coveted Best Of The Best Awards Honoring The World’s 10 Finest Properties And Hoteliers

Global luxury travel network Virtuoso® revealed the winners of the celebrated 2019 Best of the Best awards last night, before more than 1,800 industry leaders at the 31st annual Virtuoso Travel Week. The ceremony at the 13th annual Hotels & Resorts Dinner recognized the year’s top 10 hotels and hoteliers in categories ranging from best wellness program to best dining experience. Four Seasons Hotel George V triumphed with the most prestigious prize: Hotel of the Year.

Virtuoso® is the leading international travel agency network specializing in luxury and experiential travel. This by-invitation-only organization comprises over 1,000 travel agency partners with 20,000 elite travel advisors in 50 countries throughout North America, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Africa and the Middle East.

Drawing upon its preferred relationships with over 1,800 of the world’s best hotels and resorts, cruise lines, airlines, tour companies and premier destinations, the network provides its upscale clientele with exclusive amenities, rare experiences and privileged access. More than (U.S.) $26.4 billion in annual travel sales makes Virtuoso a powerhouse in the luxury travel industry.

With a wide-ranging portfolio of more than 1,400 hotels, resorts, villas, tented camps and private island retreats in over 100 countries, Virtuoso Hotels & Resorts is the industry’s most renowned program. Started in 1992 with 20 hotels, today it includes more five-star properties than any other group.

Virtuoso’s 20,000 professional travel advisors from 50 countries served as Best of the Best award voters. Editors of Virtuoso Life, the network’s multi-award-winning magazine, lent insights to narrow the field of nominees for which the advisors voted. Winners will be showcased in the September/October issue of the magazine, reaching 200,000 affluent households.

The exceptional contributions of these Best of the Best winners are emblematic of the caliber of creativity, service and guest experiences that are the hallmark of the Virtuoso Hotels & Resorts program,” said Albert Herrera, senior vice president of Global Product Partnerships for Virtuoso. “Every year our winners raise the bar even higher for global luxury hospitality, and we are proud to honor their accomplishments while expressing gratitude for the inspiration they provide to us all.

The 2019 Virtuoso Best of the Best winners are:

Hotel of the Year: An iconic hotel that epitomizes excellence in luxury hospitality and encourages positive change in its community.
Winner: Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris, France
The property delights guests with impeccable service, fine art and antiques and stunning floral displays. A new spa features an indoor pool and dozens of treatments and fitness programs, including a staff-led jog past landmarks including the Louvre and Eiffel Tower. The hotel offers three restaurants: the three-Michelin-starred Le Cinq as well as Le George and L’Orangerie, which each boast a star of their own.

Best Achievement in Design: Outstanding architecture and design of a hotel or component (room or suite, restaurant, spa, public space, etc.), whether a new property, renovation, or restoration.
Winner: Rosewood Hong Kong, China
Soaring 65 stories above Victoria Dockside, a new art and design district on the Kowloon waterfront, Rosewood’s glass tower enhances Hong Kong’s skyline. Inside, Western and Asian aesthetics blend seamlessly, from the octagonal Chinese bagua symbol on carpets and walls to copper-mesh-lined French pendant lights, Damien Hirst artwork, and Indian artist Bharti Kher’s life-size elephant sculpture.

Best Dining Experience: Excellence in hotel dining encompassing outstanding food, wine list, service, ambiance, or even a stunning view.
Winner: La Reserve Paris Hotel and Spa – Restaurant Le Gabriel, Paris, France
The gilded dining room of the two-Michelin-starred restaurant in a 19th-century mansion-turned-hotel makes an unforgettable impression. And that’s before chef Jérôme Banctel brings his notable pedigree, Breton upbringing, and influences from his travels to the table with modern takes on French classics such as coriander-spiced artichoke heart and pigeon with cacao and buckwheat.

Best Bar: A hotel bar that offers a social meeting spot where innovative drinks, lively mixologists and servers, and an enticing atmosphere create a “see and be seen” buzz.
Winner: Four Seasons Hotel at The Surf Club – Le Sirenuse Champagne Bar, Surfside, Florida, U.S.
Amalfi Coast bars perfected the art of aperitivo, and that spirit is exemplified in this stylish import from Positano’s Le Sirenuse hotel. The lounge in the historic hotel’s original ballroom serves the largest selection of Champagne in the Miami area, plus grappas, liqueurs, and bubbly-infused cocktails, in handblown Venetian glasses.

Sustainable Tourism Leadership: A property that exhibits a commitment to the pillars of sustainable tourism including environmentally friendly practices, protection of cultural and natural heritage, and social and economic benefits for local people.
Winner: Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley, Wolgan Valley, Australia
This 7,000-acre success story shows how degraded ranchland can be restored to its natural grandeur. Kangaroos, wombats, and other wildlife roam the resort grounds, which was the world’s first to achieve internationally accredited carbon-neutral certification. Guest experiences focus on the outdoors, such as guided glowworm walks, stargazing, nocturnal animal viewing and tree planting.

Best Family Program: A property offering children’s programs, from creative activities to educational endeavors and active adventures.
Winner: Grand Velas Riviera Maya, Playa del Carmen, Mexico
Families bond over horseback riding, boogie boarding, snorkeling and more, then relax at the pool or spa (with a kids’ treatment menu). The Kids’ Club offers 4- through 12-year-olds storytelling, movies, and games, while teens enjoy karaoke, pool tables, and dancing. Family accommodations lie near the pool and beach, and a “baby concierge” stocks everything from strollers to bottles – and arranges sitters too.

Best Wellness Program: A hotel focusing on mind/body balance through excellence in nutrition or diet programs, fitness and wellness classes, spa experiences, and inspiring location.
Winner: Miraval Arizona Resort & Spa, Tucson, Arizona, U.S.
Miraval helped pioneer the modern spa resort, and its flagship property continues to lead the way. Guests choose from more than 100 workshops, classes, and activities that include cooking, private and group workouts, beekeeping, and even equine therapy. Healthy gourmet meals fuel guests’ paths to wellness, as do rituals including massages and acupuncture at the Life in Balance Spa.

Best Virtuoso Newcomer: The most noteworthy network addition from April 2018 onward.
Winner: Montage Los Cabos, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
This contemporary retreat offers an abundance of memorable experiences. Guests sip mezcal and dine at the two restaurants, play the 18-hole golf course, enjoy Baja-inspired spa treatments, and snorkel and paddleboard in Santa Maria Bay – a marine sanctuary and one of the area’s few swimmable beaches.

Best Virtuoso Hotel Ambassador: An executive (other than general manager or managing director) who embodies Virtuoso’s power of human connection and strives for the mutual benefit of network advisors and their brand, property, or properties.
Winner: Carlos Quereda, Querido Representation Co.
During his decade-long tenure at the Marbella Club on Spain’s Costa del Sol, Quereda was inspired by cofounder Count Rudolf von Schönburg’s ritual of greeting guests and staff, converting them into lifelong friends of the hotel. Quereda brings this hospitality to life to satisfy travelers’ quests for unique properties that embody local traditions and soul.

Hotelier of the Year:An experienced manager who demonstrates leadership and vision, a passion for the industry, a commitment to Virtuoso advisors, and an appreciation for detail.
Winner: Amanda Hyndman, Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London, U.K.
Hyndman’s career spans more than 30 years and some of the world’s most prestigious hotels, including Mandarin’s Bangkok flagship, where she was the first female general manager. She arrived at the Hyde Park property in June 2018, one week after a two-year renovation was completed – and two days before a fire shuttered the hotel. Hyndman transitioned staff to help with rebuilding, weathering the nine-month closure with no layoffs. The hotel reopened last spring with Hyndman and her kindness and commitment at the helm.

For more on Virtuoso and its properties in over 100 countries, including booking a stay online at the global portfolio of luxury hotels, visit www.virtuoso.com.

Publishing Giant Condé Nast Announces New Global Leadership Structure

U.S./New York-based Condé Nast and London-based Condé Nast International Are Integrated as One Global Team. New Consumer Marketing Function to Bring Focus on Direct-to-Consumer Efforts With Unified Commercial Team to Better Serve Global Clients’ Holistic Needs

New Leadership Structure is Expected to Help Further Turn the Financial Ship Around As Company Moves Beyond Closing and Selling Off Magazine Titles, Layoffs and Consolidation of Workforce Across All Titles

Long expected, Condé Nast yesterday appointed a new global leadership team designed to accelerate the company’s evolution into a 21st-century media company. The new organizational structure, which combines Condé Nast and Condé Nast International into a unified global team, was created with several guiding principles in mind, including the preservation of local editorial voice and authority, an enhanced focus on the consumer, unification of the company’s ad and commercial sales functions to reflect clients’ local and global needs and the development of new ways to share capabilities and best practices across the company.

Condé Nast is a global media company, home to iconic brands including Vogue, The New Yorker, GQ, Glamour, AD, Vanity Fair, and Wired, among many others. The company’s award-winning content reaches 84 million consumers in print, 367 million in digital and 379 million across social platforms, and generates more than 1 billion video views each month. The company is headquartered in London and New York and operates in 32 markets worldwide including China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico & Latin America, Russia, Spain, Taiwan, the U.K., and the U.S., with local license partners across the globe. Launched in 2011, Condé Nast Entertainment is an award-winning production and distribution studio that creates programming across film, television, social and digital video and virtual reality.

One of my top priorities has been to define our organizational structure so that we can take full advantage of our unique growth opportunities and exceptional content around the world,” said the recently-appointed CEO of Condé Nast, RogerLynchI’m confident that our new global structure will better enable us to collaborate across teams and markets and, ultimately, deliver unparalleled experiences for our consumers and clients.

The new structure is as follows:

Global Content Functions:: Anna Wintour, U.S. Artistic Director, Editor-in-Chief of Vogue U.S. and (newly-appointed) Global Content Advisor, will continue in her role as U.S. Artistic Director and Editor-in-Chief of Vogue U.S., and will add Global Content Advisor and oversight of Vogue International to her responsibilities. In her expanded role, Wintour will advise the executive leadership team on global content opportunities and act as a resource to editors-in-chief and editorial talent worldwide.

Oren Katzeff, President of Condé Nast Entertainment (CNE), will expand the company’s digital video, film and television operations to create best-in-class video content experiences for audiences worldwide. The company has been increasing its focus on video content and currently generates 1.1 billion video views per month. Under Oren’s leadership, CNE will now be the core of our global network of video teams, supporting the growth of our video businesses in all markets.

David Remnick, Editor-in-Chief of The New Yorker, will also continue to report directly to Lynch.

Global Operations Organization: Wolfgang Blau, President, International & Chief Operating Officer will oversee all non-U.S. markets, as well as selected global strategic functions, including Product & Technology, Data, Licensing, Global Editorial Operations, Business Development, and Delivery & Business Transformation. This organization will ensure day-to-day operational excellence and capability sharing across the business.

Global Commercial Organization: Pamela Drucker Mann, Global Chief Revenue Officer & President, U.S. Revenue, will lead a new global revenue organization that brings together the company’s U.S. and international ad sales, creative and agency, B2B marketing and client service capabilities. Jamie Jouning, promoted to Chief Client Officer, will report to Drucker Mann and oversee key global accounts, multi-market deals, and central digital ad operations. Drucker Mann will define ad sales and ad product strategies globally, and work closely with Jamie and the central team and commercial leads in the company’s worldwide markets to drive overall ad, agency, and B2B revenue and share best practices.

Consumer Marketing Organization: Condé Nast is creating a new consumer marketing organization that will be led by a Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) and will bring added focus to the company’s direct-to-consumer efforts. As the company expands its consumer offerings, this team will be charged with developing best-in-class capabilities and consistency across consumer experiences on every platform. The team will also be responsible for consumer revenue, with a core focus on subscriptions and memberships. In addition, the team will have responsibility for global brand management, consumer research, and insights and global audience development, ensuring a data-driven approach to the company’s efforts. The search for a CMO to lead this new organization will begin immediately.

Corporate Functions: The company is also globalizing its three corporate functions to leverage skills, expertise and standardize processes and best practices: People, Finance and Communications. The company will begin an immediate search and selection process for these and other open roles. Until new leaders are identified, teams will maintain their existing reporting lines and responsibilities.

We’re bringing added focus to our direct-to-consumer efforts and will build a new consumer marketing function that will be charged with developing best-in-class subscription and membership capabilities, and maintaining the authenticity of our iconic global brands,” Lynch continued. “And by transforming our sales organization into a unified global team, Condé Nast will be better positioned to serve the holistic needs of our clients around the world and make it easier for them to do business with us.

The new structure and appointments take effect immediately.

Design-Driven AC Hotels by Marriott® Brand Debuts in New York City

Midtown Manhattan’s Hottest New Property Features Elegant Year-Round Rooftop Lounge with Views of the Empire State Building, Creating an Oasis of Calm in the Heart of the City

Times Square remains the beating heart of Manhattan, and now travelers can be at the center of the action while still having space to reflect with the opening of the new AC Hotel New York Times Square. This new AC Hotel is perfectly positioned near the Garment District and only a half-block from the Times Square public transportation hub. The hotel is the first of two planned for the European-inspired AC Hotels by Marriott brand in Manhattan this year, with a second property expected to open in the Financial District later in 2018.

AC Hotels by Marriott Logo

AC Hotels by Marriott logo

The Midtown hotel melds an urban vibe with classic elements that hark back to the brand’s Spanish roots. The entrance lobby is 23 feet high with a large, open staircase to the lower level illuminated by a skylight shed roof. Its 290 guest rooms will offer an oasis in the midst of the bustle of NYC with a sleek and classic modern style. With options like floor-to-ceiling windows and private balconies, guests can enjoy unparalleled city views.

AC Hotel New York Times Square features two food and beverage experiences. The beloved NYC restaurant Boqueria will bring its lively Spanish tapas and signature convivial spirit to 260 West 40th Street, adjacent to the new AC Hotel lobby. The restaurant features a location-specific breakfast menu, a large rotisserie, and time-honored favorites like Pan Con Tomate, Pulpo a la Plancha, and Paella de Mariscos from Catalan chef Marc Vidal. Castell, a year-round rooftop lounge will be open to guests and locals alike when it debuts in May 2018, serving up views of NYC’s iconic skyline along with shareable plates, Happy Hour rituals, and cocktails, including the brand’s signature Gin & Tonic.

We are delighted to introduce New York City to the AC brand’s ‘New Way to Hotel,'” says Corry Oakes, President/CEO of OTO Development, the Johnson Management company that developed and operates the new hotel. “In addition to intriguing architectural details, local artwork in common spaces, and dynamic culinary options at Boqueria and Castell Lounge, what guests will truly appreciate is having space to breathe in this city that never sleeps.

AC Hotel New York Times Square brings travelers the best of contemporary European architecture infused with the design-forward spirit of the NYC Fashion District, as interpreted by Helpern Architects. Visitors are drawn into the elegant, double-height lobby via a granite-paved plaza; as they enter through the pleated glass façade, they become immediately aware of the signature materials such as Venetian terrazzo, quarter-sawn dark walnut millwork, and the dark patina of statuary bronze that makes the whole area glow. The modern-day grand stair that wraps top to bottom of the lobby and the large, open well-lit space make for the perfect backdrop for the property’s impressive art installations.

With the Spanish heritage of the AC Hotels by Marriott brand, our design-driven hotel brings new inspiration to the city,” says Benjamin Britton, General Manager of AC Hotel New York Times Square. “We provide everything essential you need – and nothing you don’t – creating a seamless, tranquil and frictionless experience for our guests, whether they’re traveling for business or leisure.

The AC Hotel in Times Square has developed signature programming, with attention to detail at every step – each one crafted to encourage guests to slow down in this hectic city. With elements such as lavender sachets at turndown (freshly made each day) to help promote better sleep, guests will feel taken care of but not fussed over. Other amenities include a 24-hour fitness center, 3,365 square feet of event space, and an AC Market featuring locally sourced items such as Hell’s Kitchen Hot Sauces.

“At AC Hotels, everything is done with intention while creating harmony – we believe if we have time to make it, we have time to make it beautiful,” said Benoit Racle, Global Brand Leader, AC Hotels by Marriott. “We are so pleased to welcome AC Hotel New York Times Square to the AC Hotels family as our first New York City property, and to be able to offer visitors and locals in Manhattan a tranquil space in the heart of the city to relax, reflect and reset.

The purposeful design of AC Hotel New York Times Square also features a collection of artwork by a mix of local and well-known artists. Ranging from sculptures to abstract painting, these expressive pieces are visible in shared spaces to inspire guests during their stay – one could almost call it a private art gallery. Guest room walls feature photography of New York City’s unique and iconic architecture such as Fulton Street Station and the Oculus.

TripAdvisor Recognizes World’s Best Airlines With 2018 Travelers’ Choice Awards

Global Flyer Reviews Reveal Singapore Airlines as Best in the World; Southwest is Top U.S. Airline

TripAdvisor®, the travel planning and booking site, today announced the winners of its Travelers’ Choice® awards for airlines, identifying travelers’ favorite carriers around the globe. For 2018, Singapore Airlines was named the number one airline in the world and Southwest Airlines ranked as the best U.S. carrier. Award winners were determined using an algorithm that took into account the quantity and quality of airline reviews and ratings submitted by travelers worldwide, over a 12-month period on TripAdvisor Flights.

TripAdvisor New  Logo

TripAdvisor Logo

Following the success of last year’s inaugural Travelers’ Choice awards for airlines, the 2018 award categories expanded to honor 69 airlines that provide exceptional value and service across the world. In addition to the world list, the Traveler’s Choice awards recognize the best airlines in seven regions including Asia, Europe, North America, Latin America, South Pacific & Oceana, Africa & Indian Ocean, and the Middle East. The awards also recognize the top airlines in four distinct service classes: International First Class, Business Class, Premium Economy and Economy. The hallmarks of Travelers’ Choice award winners are outstanding service, quality and value.

Class of Service Global Winners: Recognizing airlines around the world that provide a consistently exceptional passenger experience in each cabin

Best First Class: Singapore Airlines, Singapore
Best Business Class: Qatar Airways, Qatar
Best Premium Economy: Air New Zealand, New Zealand
Best Economy: Singapore Airlines, Singapore

We’re thrilled to recognize the global TripAdvisor community’s favorite airlines and shine a spotlight on the carriers around the world that provide the very best flying experiences,” said Bryan Saltzburg, senior vice president and general manager for TripAdvisor Flights. “As the airline industry introduces new fare products and a widening array of in-flight offerings, consumers continue to seek out the carriers that deliver value and a quality experience. The Travelers’ Choice awards for airlines recognize the carriers that exceed passenger expectations and receive top marks from travelers.

Asian Carriers Flying High
Among the global top 10, Asian carriers dominated with four airlines on the list (Singapore Airlines, Japan Airlines, EVA Air and Korean Air); followed by the Middle East with two airlines (Emirates and Qatar Airways).

Top 10 Airlines in the World: Recognizing airlines around the world that deliver consistently exceptional experiences to the global traveler

1. Singapore Airlines, Singapore
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “
I flew from Sydney to Singapore in business class. The food was the best I have had in the last ten years. Service was great and the staff actually wanted to be there. One of the best, if not the best airline.”

2. Air New Zealand, New Zealand
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “
The flight attendants are friendly, courteous, professional, and dedicated to customer service. The dinner was excellent, even in Economy class, and there was complimentary NZ red and white wine. Even the safety videos are entertaining. I wouldn’t fly any other airline between the U.S. and New Zealand.

3. Emirates, United Arab Emirates
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “
This airline is the essence of style, class and comfort. Everything I had expected was surpassed. From their presentation, to their service, which is professional, but does not override their personable approach to travellers. The Airbus is huge, but the atmosphere within is comfortable, seats are wider, windows are bigger.

4. Japan Airlines, Japan
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “
This airline carrier is exquisite and features great on board meal service, drink service, and the entertainment is great. They provide excellent service with exceptional leg room. This airline is truly above most others and comes with outstanding crew members.”

5. EVA Air, Taiwan
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “
One of the things that separates EVA out from other airlines is in the little things. I was blown away by the novelty of the “Character” flight we took. Everything from the pillows to the meals – it was Hello Kitty cuteness overload. Kids’ meals are excellent. These small personal touches made our entire flight experience so much nicer!”  

6. Southwest Airlines, United States
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “
We choose to fly Southwest whenever we can. Their flights are on time and the service is friendly and efficient. We don’t mind not having assigned seats. Bags fly free, and we always check ours. Frequent Flier miles are easy to accumulate with their membership program.

7. Jet2.com, United Kingdom
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “
We have just come back from Portugal and all I can say is what a fab service from jet 2. From start to finish, they made my holiday less stressful. I have never been with them before and can certainly say they’re better than most other companies I have been with.”

8. Qatar AirwaysQatar
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “
I’ve traveled a lot in my life and Qatar is one of my favourite airlines to travel with. The bar in a380 (business class) is the best. The service regardless of class is fab. The treatment of frequent fliers is great… food very tasty for economy … and very big portions… Entertainment is top notch. They are one of my favourite airlines for eco travel.”

9. Azul, Brazil
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “
Azul is a lovely airline, employing a fleet of Embraer regional jets offering 2 + 2 seating. Service is efficient and you always get a package of “aviõezinhos” (airplane shaped gummy bears) to chew on the short domestic hops.”

10. Korean Air, South Korea
According to a TripAdvisor reviewer: “
We traveled from Chicago to Hong Kong with our toddler, and could not have been more pleased with the experience. Basic economy on KA is basically economy plus on other (especially US-based) airlines. The flight staff actually made me like the experience, rather than detract from it. I’ll be flying KA whenever possible in the future.

We are honoured to be this year’s recipient of the Best Airline in the World title in the prestigious TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards for Airlines 2018. The award is a validation of the hard work and dedication of our thousands of staff all around the world, who focus their attention every day on ensuring that Singapore Airlines remains competitive on a global level,” said Singapore Airlines’ CEO, Mr. Goh Choon Phong. “Our business model is based around three main pillars – product leadership, service excellence and network connectivity. We are continuing to invest heavily in all three areas to ensure we have industry-leading offerings that meet and exceed our customers’ expectations, both on the ground and in the air. Continue reading

TripAdvisor Names The Best Airlines In The World

World’s Largest Travel Site Announces 2017 Travelers’ Choice Awards for Airlines, Based on Flyer Reviews

Emirates is the #1 Airline in the World; Delta and JetBlue Top North American Lists

TripAdvisor®, the travel planning and booking site, today announced the winners of its first annual Travelers’ Choice® awards for airlines, recognizing travelers’ favorite carriers around the globe. Emirates was named the top airline in the world, followed by Singapore Airlines and Azul. Winners were based on airline reviews submitted on TripAdvisor Flights from February 2016 to February 2017.trip-advisor-logo-png

The awards honor 50 airlines overall, including top lists for the World, Europe, North America, the Middle East and Africa; as well as 16 regional winners. The awards also highlight top airlines by the level of service, covering First Class, Business Class, Premium Economy, and Economy. Award winners were determined using an algorithm that took into account the quantity and quality of airline reviews and ratings submitted by travelers worldwide, over a 12-month period. The hallmarks of Travelers’ Choice award winners are outstanding service, quality, and value.

We are proud to announce the inaugural Travelers’ Choice awards for airlines, to help travelers make the most well-informed air travel decisions, based on the experiences of the global TripAdvisor community,” said Bryan Saltzburg, senior vice president and general manager for TripAdvisor Flights. “The airline industry is investing billions of dollars in new aircraft and service enhancements to differentiate the flying experience and these awards recognize the carriers offering the very best experiences and value to the traveling public.”

Among the top 10 global list, Asia holds the highest number of individual winners, with total of five (Singapore Airlines, Korean Air, Japan Airlines, Thai Smile and Garuda Indonesia); followed by the United States, with two airlines in the top rankings: JetBlue and Alaska Airlines, in fourth and ninth places, respectively.

Top 10 Airlines in the World:

1.      Emirates, United Arab Emirates
2.      Singapore Airlines, Singapore
3.      Azul, Brazil
4.      JetBlue, United States
5.      Air New Zealand, New Zealand
6.      Korean Air, South Korea
7.      Japan Airlines, Japan
8.      Thai Smile, Thailand
9.      Alaska Airlines, United States
10.  Garuda Indonesia, Indonesia

Class of Service Global Winners:

Best First Class: Emirates, United Arab Emirates
Best Business Class: Aeroflot, Russia
Best Premium Economy Class in the World: Air New Zealand, New Zealand
Best Economy Class in the World: Emirates, United Arab Emirates

North America Awards:

Top Major Airline in North America:
Delta Air Lines, United States

Top Mid-Size & Low-Cost Airlines in North America:

1.      JetBlue, United States
2.      Alaska Airlines, United States
3.      Southwest, United States
4.      Virgin America, United States
5.      Westjet, Canada

We are honored to be named the Best Airline in the World in the TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards for Airlines 2017,” said Sir Tim Clark, President, Emirates Airlines. “The fact that the awards are a result of unbiased reviews and feedback speaks to our commitment to deliver a superior travel experience for our customers. We want travelers to continue making Emirates their first choice whenever they think to travel. That is why we continue to invest in products and services across all classes, and why our service teams work hard and put their hearts into providing the very best experience for our customers both onboard and on the ground every day.”

Our mission of inspiring humanity sets us apart from every other airline,” said Joanna Geraghty, JetBlue executive vice president of customer experience. “This recognition by TripAdvisor and our customers demonstrates once again, that we are on the right path. Thanks to our 20,000 crewmembers who live and breathe our unique values every day. It’s our culture that inspires us to provide exceptional service, while we continue to build upon the product our customers love.”

For the complete list of winners from the 2017 Travelers’ Choice awards for airlines, visit www.tripadvisor.com/TravelersChoice-Airlines. Travelers can also follow the conversation on Twitter at #TravelersChoice.

TripAdvisor® is the world’s largest travel site*, enabling travelers to unleash the potential of every trip and offers advice from millions of travelers, with 465 million reviews and opinions covering 7 million accommodations, restaurants and attractions, and a wide variety of travel choices and planning features — checking more than 200 websites to help travelers find and book today’s lowest hotel prices. TripAdvisor branded sites make up the largest travel community in the world, reaching 390 million average unique monthly visitors** in 49 markets worldwide. TripAdvisor: Know better. Book better. Go better.

TripAdvisor, Inc. (NASDAQ: TRIP), through its subsidiaries, manages and operates websites under 23 other travel media brands: www.airfarewatchdog.comwww.bookingbuddy.comwww.citymaps.comwww.cruisecritic.comwww.familyvacationcritic.comwww.flipkey.comwww.thefork.com (including www.lafourchette.comwww.eltenedor.comwww.iens.nl and www.dimmi.com.au), www.gateguru.comwww.holidaylettings.co.ukwww.holidaywatchdog.comwww.housetrip.comwww.independenttraveler.comwww.jetsetter.comwww.niumba.comwww.onetime.comwww.oyster.comwww.seatguru.comwww.smartertravel.comwww.tingo.comwww.travelpod.comwww.tripbod.comwww.vacationhomerentals.com and www.viator.com.

*Source: comScore Media Metrix for TripAdvisor Sites, worldwide, November 2016
**Source: TripAdvisor log files, Q3 2016

Let’s Rise: Westin Hotels & Resorts Reveals a Powerful Rally-Cry for Travelers To Regain Control of Their Well-Being While on the Road

$30 Million Brand Campaign Underscores How Westin Tackles The Travel & Wellness Trends Unveiled In New Global Survey

Westin Hotels & Resorts, part of Marriott International, Inc., today unveiled its first global brand campaign in more than five years, taking on the disruptions, distractions and unpredictability of travel and empowering travelers to embrace well-being as a way to regain control of their routines and be their best while on the road. The $30 million dollar, integrated advertising campaign – called Let’s Rise – communicates Westin’s commitment to its guests’ well-being before, during and after their stay. Beginning today, the Let’s Rise campaign will be featured in broadcast, digital, radio and out-of-home channels, with print placements to follow later this year. The Let’s Rise mantra will also serve as an anchor for the wellness programs and partnerships that roll out for guests and associates throughout the year.

westin-lets-rise-photo-business-wire

Westin – Let’s Rise (Photo: Business Wire)

Westin’s Let’s Rise campaign is inspired by and illustrative of the wellness and travel trends fueling the future of both industries, as articulated in a new global study*** conducted in partnership with StudyLogic that surveyed travelers in North America, Mexico, the United Kingdom, Germany, the United Arab Emirates and China. The results show a seismic shift in the way today’s travelers prioritize their well-being. With less time and more disruptors on the road, they are reinventing business and leisure travel to put things like fitness first with new vigor to pursue mindfulness and adventure.wescmyk-186431-Westin Hotels Resorts Brand Logo CMYK color versi

Let’s Rise is perfectly positioned to connect with travelers as more of a rally-cry than a brand campaign, given today’s over-scheduled and always-on culture,” said Brian Povinelli, Global Brand Leader, Westin Hotels & Resorts. “Around the world, we are seeing travelers realigning their priorities to put their well-being first, and Westin is proud to empower our guests to rise to the occasion and be their best selves on the road.”

Brand Campaign Challenges Travelers: “Will You Get Up, or Will You Rise?”

Westin worked with San Francisco-based Venables Bell & Partners to develop the multi-faceted campaign, consisting of multiple executions in which travelers take control of their well-being. Illustrating guests enabled to wake up early for a run, stay on track with healthy eating goals, and find time to revitalize with an incredible night’s sleep, the campaign aims to connect consumers to the signature programs inherent in Westin’s DNA – from the iconic Westin Heavenly Bed to its workout Gear Lending program in partnership with New Balance® – all designed to embody the brand’s Six Pillars of Well-being: Sleep Well, Eat Well, Move Well, Feel Well, Work Well, and Play Well.

Because morning is the first and best opportunity to take control of the day ahead, the campaign uses morning light as a consistent creative device to speak to the potential that the morning holds. Overall, the campaign calls consumers to answer a simple question, “Will you get up, or will you rise?

Global Study Shows Seismic Shift in Travelers’ Well-being:

1. Unpredictability of Travel Sees Stress Skyrocket in 2017: Guests around the Globe Turn to Wellness to Regain Control

In the last three years, rising wealth and digital connectivity have prompted a significant spike in global travel and the unpredictability that accompanies it. It is no surprise then that nearly 3 in 4 travelers report they have trouble maintaining their routine on the road. More than 60% say they sleep less, 65% say they exercise less, and 15% report increased stress levels on vacation, a time traditionally thought of as downtime for rest and relaxation. Continue reading

United Polaris “Now Arriving” at Saks Fifth Avenue’s Iconic New York City Windows

New Window Display Showcases United Airlines’s New International Premium Cabin Travel Experience

United Airlines and Saks Fifth Avenue unveiled a United Polaris-themed takeover of the windows in the luxury retailer’s flagship store on Fifth Avenue in New York City. Entitled “Now Arriving,” the 14 storefront windows display a replica of a United Airlines plane. The center six windows feature a re-creation of the United Polaris experience, including actual United Polaris seats, which will debut on flights in February, and the cabin’s custom Saks Fifth Avenue bedding suite. The United Polaris themed windows will be on display until Jan. 22, 2017.

download-1

Exterior Facade of Saks Fifth Avenue in New York City

United will begin rolling out the United Polaris seat on its Boeing 777-300ER fleet this quarter and subsequently on Boeing 787-10 and Airbus A350-1000 aircraft, as well as on Boeing 767-300 and 777-200 retrofits. The first of nine United Polaris lounges is now open at Chicago O’Hare International Airport, with the remaining opening this year and next.

download-8

United Polaris business class takes over the windows at Saks Fifth Avenue in New York City. Entitled “Now Arriving,” the 14 storefront windows display a replica of a United Airlines plane. The center six windows feature a re-creation of the United Polaris business class experience, including actual United Polaris seats, which will debut on flights in February, and the cabin’s custom Saks Fifth Avenue bedding suite.

We designed these windows to give passersby the feeling that they are actually walking through the luxurious United Polaris cabin,” said Mark Briggs, executive vice president, creative, Saks Fifth Avenue. “The attention to detail throughout the installation is impressive, from the real United Polaris seats and Saks bedding to the United flight attendant uniforms and Saks’ signature fashion represented by the season’s top ready-to-wear resort looks.”

download-3

United Polaris business class takes over the windows at Saks Fifth Avenue in New York City. Entitled “Now Arriving,” the 14 storefront windows display a replica of a United Airlines plane. The center six windows feature a re-creation of the United Polaris business class experience, including actual United Polaris seats, which will debut on flights in February, and the cabin’s custom Saks Fifth Avenue bedding suite.

Saks Fifth Avenue is part of the Hudson’s Bay Company brand portfolio, Saks operates 41 full-line stores in 22 states and Canada, five international licensed stores and www.saks.com, the company’s online store. Continue reading