ABC News | In a massive security breach, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) inadvertently posted online its airport screening procedures manual, including some of the most closely guarded secrets regarding special rules for diplomats and CIA and law enforcement officers.
The most sensitive parts of the 93-page Standard Operating Procedures manual were apparently redacted in a way that computer savvy individuals easily overcame.
The document shows sample CIA, Congressional and law enforcement credentials which experts say would make it easy for terrorists to duplicate.
The improperly redacted areas indicate that only 20 percent of checked bags are to be hand searched for explosives and reveal in detail the limitations of x-ray screening machines.
Azamara Cruises, the small-shipcruise line launched two years ago by Royal Caribbean, as an upscale sister line to Celebrity Cruises, this week got a new name—Azamara Club Cruises. And officials announced pricing will be going all-inclusive starting in April 2010, with wine at lunch and dinner, soft drinks, espresso drinks and gratuities included in the cruise fare.
The line operates two 694-passenger ships, Journey and Quest.
Why the redo? With Azamara not the big hit officials had hoped, Royal Caribbean brought in big-hitter, Larry Pimentel, as president and CEO (he previously helmed SeaDream Yacht Club and before that Seabourn). And he has ideas.
The Canvas website describes the collection as “clothes for how you live today.” Well, we live today as some-time nomads who visit family in Seattle, celebrate the holidays on a Caribbean beach, and travel to China for business. Lands' End Canvas's classic American heritage clothing is ideal for that lifestyle—versatile and functional for travel.
The LE favorites are all there but with slimmer cuts, brighter colors. I guess you could say it's less mom-and-pop frump and more Tweet generation, which really is a state of mind.
2010 is shaping up to be a great year for Americans to travel to the Argentine capital, which celebrates its bicentennial next year with a wave of new hotels, a grand theater reopening, and one of the best exchange rates of the decade.
Spain-based NH Hoteles is celebrating its 10th anniversary in the country by inaugurating not one but two new Buenos Aires properties: the nominally green, 116-room NH Tango (whose décor, appropriately enough, is themed after that quintessentially Argentine dance); and the sleek, 176-suite NH 9 de Julio, so named for its position on the mammoth 10-lane boulevard traversing the city. Both hotels are located downtown, near such tourist attractions as the Obelisque and the Teatro Colon. Another addition to the city: the luxury 91-room Blue Tree Buenos Aires Ker, in tony Recoleta.
Ritz-Carlton Hotels announced today that it will open its first property in Israel at the marina in Herzliya, a suburb on the coast a bit north of Tel Aviv. Set to open in March 2012, the property will have 110 rooms and will also feature 85 Ritz-Carlton Residential Suites.
Today is World’s AIDS Day—a perfect time to celebrate the fact that the United States soon joins most of the world in allowing those with HIV/AIDS to travel freely to this country.
In late October, President Obama lifted the 22 year-old ban on travelers with HIV/AIDS (only about a dozen countries have such restrictions, including Iraq and Libya) and the repeal will go into effect January 4, 2010.
I'm dreaming of a Dior Christmas. Provocative designer John Galliano's holiday on ice now rises next to the grand staircase at Claridge's, a frozen confection enlivened by a lurking snow leopard, dragonflies and parrots. So whenever I holly go lightly through this glittering Art Deco lobby on Brook Street in London's Mayfair district for the next month, my season will be brightened by this Arctic orchid tree from Dior's outré elf.
Shane Mitchell is a special correspondent for Travel + Leisure.
Photo courtesy of Claridge's
The news of Friday's deadly bombing of a Moscow-to-St. Petersburg train hit me hard. At least 26 people are dead and 95 injured, and the figures continue to climb. As I reported in my recent blog post, I had traveled that same train route exactly three weeks earlier to the day.
I took this picture with my Blackberry just before boarding train 024A, the Yunost or "Youth Express." The Yunost leaves Leningradsky Station at 12:30 p.m., just in time for the rudimentary lunch that is wrapped in plastic and placed on your seat before boarding. The targeted train, the Nevsky Express, follows the same route as the Yunost, leaving at 6:30 p.m. and arriving at 11 p.m., a far shorter journey than the Yunost's unimpressive travel time of 7 hours and 40 minutes. There's not much to see out the windows on the Nevsky at this time of year because it's pitch black by then, which must have made the terrorist blast all the more harrowing.
The Nevsky Express is somewhat more luxurious than the Yunost, but anyone who has traveled in Russia knows that luxury is a word with a loose definition in that part of the world. Both trains have only simple seating, no sleeping berths. Both serve the same bland sandwiches and chips. People on the Yunost as well as the Nevsky doze against the bundles of heavy coats ballooning from hooks by the windows. Both trains pass the same broad stretches of farmland edged by pine forest. Both edge past the same obscure sleepy villages and towns—Spirovo, Vyshny Volochek, and Uglovko, where the bombing took place.
On the Yunost I sat next to a soldier on leave. My conductor limped, and his hat was too big for his head. The car attendant, who sat in a private cabin near the samovar, looked at me suspiciously whenever I refilled my teacup. Two very pretty young women a few rows ahead of me giggled almost the entire trip. I don't know anything about the people who died on the Nevsky Express on Friday, but they can't have been much different from those on my train. Eager to visit family. Excited about touring the Hermitage Museum. Heading home on leave. Simply living their lives. Until they lost theirs.
Today’s cool, crisp, finally-fall weather had me in the mood to walk to our offices in Midtown from my downtown home. As I trotted down Broadway, passing 29th street, I realized I had not yet been by to see the new Ace Hotel, and more precisely, its buzzed-about in-house Stumptown Coffee shop.
When I stepped into the shower on my first morning at the new St. Regis Princeville Resort on Kaua’i, it was virtually impossible not to hum “I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair.” Only a sheet of plate glass separated me from the turquoise arc of Hanalei Bay, a key location for the movie South Pacific (1958).