British Airways launches new year-round service from London Gatwick to Milan Bergamo

British Airways has announced plans to launch a new year-round service from London Gatwick to Milan Bergamo.

The new service will be launched on September 1, 2019, with flights operating every day of the week except for Saturday. Bergamo Airport is located nearly 45km from Milan, a world fashion capital considered perfect for a weekend city break. The Airport is also the closest gateway to Lake Como and Lake Garda, as well as the Franciacorta Wine Region. Bergamo also borders the Alps, providing access to a number of ski resorts during winter. Travellers can book their seats on ba.com.

British Airways is also increasing the number of flights to winter sun destination Cancun, which will move to a five-per-week service during the winter season.

Adam Carson, British Airways’ Managing Director of Gatwick, said: ‘Milan Bergamo adds another exciting destination to our Gatwick network and is perfectly located for a city break, a summer visit to the lakes or even a skiing holiday in the Alps.

‘From Gatwick we fly to over 70 destinations as our network continues to expand we’re adding new routes designed to appeal to both leisure and business customers.’

Fares to Milan Bergamo start from £25 one-way in Euro Traveller and £99 in Club Europe, and customers can choose to cut the cost of flights by using Avios part payment. Customers can select from a range of savings by destination and cabin while collecting Avios and Tier Points on their bookings.

The new route comes as British Airways is investing GBP6.5 billion to improve its customer experience over the next five years, including new aircraft, new cabins, new catering, new lounges, WiFi, and new routes.

Live Aqua Cancun takes top spot among resorts in Mexico

Live Aqua Cancun has taken the top position in the rankings provided by Travel + Leisure’s 2012 World’s Best Awards.

The resort was named the best resort in Mexico. The luxury resort is an adults-only oasis on the white-sand shoreline of Cancun. The resort has many features, including a spa and all-new dining options to complement its prime position next to white sands and blue oceanic waters.

The resort has 335 rooms and 36 suites. It also has a unique service delivery model, as it claims to provide luxurious experiences for all five senses of the human body.

The resort’s spa services provide fresh design elements and offer sensuous in-room aromatherapy services that provide an eclectic mix of menus and choices. The hotel claims that the smell and scents of the service are enough to rejuvenate the body and spirit.

Other features offered at the resort include savoury international cuisine, a world-fusion spa, in-house DJ and panoramic views of the Caribbean. The resorts catering facilities were recently upgraded with four new gourmet-dining options, inspired by celebrity chef, Eric De Maeyer.

The Best Resort award is a particularly creditable achievement because the resort was unranked in 2011 and has climbed to the top of the list within a one-year time span. Resort managers said that reaching the top at such a fast rate was due to their keen attention to detail, an innovative multi-sensory concept, and unparalleled all-inclusive offerings for adults.

Alfredo Santamaria, general manager of Live Aqua Cancun, said, ‘We are honoured and humbled by this recognition from Travel + Leisure readers. To be recognised as the best resort, not only in our destination but in all of Mexico, is a privilege we strive for every day.’

Live Aqua Cancun has also been named one of the best hotels worldwide in the Expedia World’s Best-Reviewed Hotels 2012.

Riu Hotels and Resorts Announces New Hotel Properties in Caribbean, Mexico and Morocco

RIU Hotels and Resorts, a Spain-based hotel chain, has reported opening of four new hotels in Mexico and Caribbean destinations.

The all-inclusive ClubHotel RIU Ocho Rios is located along the beach of Mammee Bay in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, and offers 856 guestrooms. The newly refurbished hotel is offering private check-in, luxurious junior suites, as well as suites with hydro-massage tubs and Jacuzzis, and hotel amenities including complimentary Wi-Fi, concierge service for restaurant bookings; complimentary dining experiences; two swimming pools; and many leisure facilities.

The Hotel RIU Palace Bavaro is a new beachside hotel in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, which opened in December 2011. The hotel is offering 610 guestrooms; 10 restaurants and bars; two swimming pools; a Mini-club; a fitness centre and a spa; along with meeting spaces.

The new RIU Palace Tikida Agadir, offering 444 rooms, opened on March 26, 2012, located next to ClubHotel RIU Tikida Dunas, RIU Tikida Beach, and Riu Grand Palace Tikida Golf properties in Agadir, Morrocco.

The RIU Palace Peninsula beach front property opened in May 2012, in Cancun, Mexico. The hotel boasts 562 rooms, located in a main building and 48 villas; dining venues including six restaurants and seven bars; and a stunning view of the Caribbean waters.

Luis Riu, the company chief executive officer, said, ‘We hope the new Riu Palace Peninsula will give a new push to this destination which recently turned 40 years old. For us, this is another example of the importance that Mexico has in our development plans and the high quality that we seek to offer in this country.’

Summer Discounts at Marriott and Renaissance Properties in the Caribbean and Mexico

Summer travel to the Caribbean and Mexico is being made more cost effective with summer discounts from Marriott and Renaissance hotel brands.

Marriott International Inc (NYSE: MAR), a US-based company that owns and operates hotel properties, has announced a new Soak up the Savings Event, which is offering discounted stays at its resorts and hotels in the Caribbean and Mexico.

Guests that book by May 31, 2012 will be eligible to benefit from discounts on stays, where room rates commence from $79 per room, per night, for stays completed between June 1 and September 30, 2012.

The participating resort properties include Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino; CasaMagna Marriott Cancun Resort; CasaMagna Marriott Puerto Vallarta Resort & Spa; Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino; Frenchman’s Reef & Morning Star Marriott Beach Resort; Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort; Renaissance Aruba Resort and Casino; JW Marriott Cancun Resort & Spa; and St Kitts Marriott Resort & The Royal Beach Casino.

The resort properties offer private access to beaches, spa outlets, meeting and events space, leisure facilities, and on site restaurants for guest use. Members of the Marriott Rewards loyalty programme will be able to collect their loyalty points as usual on completing stays at these properties.

Marriott and Renaissance Caribbean & Mexico Resorts claim to offer stylish and luxurious accommodation, signature amenities, and striking oceanfront locations at seven destinations in the Caribbean & Mexico, including Aruba, Curacao, Grand Cayman, St Kits, and St Thomas in Caribbean; and Cancun, and Peurto Vallarta in Mexico.

Hurricane Rina has its eye on Cancun

Hurricane Rina is predicted to turn into a ‘major’ storm mid-week and hit the holiday resort in Mexico, Cancun.

 

The Miami-based National Hurricane Center (NHC) has forecasted the weather system will reach the popular tourist area on Thursday after strengthening over the next 48 hours.

 

At present the thunderstorms are around 195 miles southwest of Grand Cayman island and has winds that so far reach 80 miles per hour.

 

A number of people have been reported killed by flooding and mudslides as the storm brushed over Nicaragua and Honduras.

 

The sixth named hurricane in the Atlantic in the last 12 months comes as he season draws to a close, meaning the possible damage is amplified as in many areas the ground is already waterlogged.

 

The NHC has told citizens and tourists in Belize and on the east coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula to observe Rina’s progress.

 

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office also recommends British tourists to keep up-to-date with local radio and television broadcasts and follow orders given locally during a tropical storm.

 

The NHC have predicted that winds are likely to reach 120 miles per hour, making this a category 3 storm.

 

‘Rina is likely to intensify further during the next couple of days as it traverses the very warm waters of the northwest Caribbean Sea,’ the NHC said.