What do you do if you're a hotel chain that wants to grab the interest of potential Gen X and Y guests? It's obvious, isn't it? You entice young women into a hotel room where a pajama-clad CeeLo Green, the singer-songwriter behind the danceable hit, "F*** You," lies in wait, smiling seductively. And that, in fact, was the kick-off P.R. stunt for one seriously odd (and oddly cool) promotional campaign: Discovery Doors, which launches today. It's primarily an online video game on the Reniassance Hotel's website where gamers can win everything from membership in a Coffee-of-the-Month club to a trip for two around the world—500 prizes in all. Here's how it works…
Ryanair called one of their sales tactics "Keep the Change!" but a better name might be the Schweppes Shakedown ... or Just Take Their Money Then Avoid Eye Contact Until Dublin.
Ireland's Ryanair recently got outed in the Daily Mailfor a training manual that gives cabin crew advice on how to "keep the change," and boost the airline's profits, when selling passengers drinks or snacks. “If you owe someone €2.00 advise that you are short of change right now, and can return the change at the end of the service,” reportedly read the Ryanair Sales Tips manual, published by company Retail InMotion. “Or ask them if you would like to purchase a scratchcard, or something to the value of €2.00. If it doesn't work then don't worry, at least you tried.”
Everyone's heard of the running of the bulls in Pamplona, Spain, (see video) a tradition made famous by Ernest Hemingway in his 1926 novel, The Sun Also Rises. I've run with the bulls too—not in Pamplona, but in Tecate, Mexico, in 1980, in a makeshift recreation of the Pamplona encierro. What a disaster. The bulls were small yearlings, far too young for such an event. It looked to me as if the tips of their horns had been purposely blunted. The runners were mainly drunk and rowdy college kids who yanked the animals' tails, knocked their legs out from under them, and piled on top of them as if it were a rugby scrum. And now, a group calling itself the Great Bull Run is bringing this extreme activity to a city near you. But hold the olés just yet.
The Carlton (go to 0:55 in the film clip, above) was the setting for the 1955 Alfred Hitchcock thriller To Catch A Thief, starring Cary Grant as a reformed diamond thief who is suspected of returning to his old ways. In the movie, the real thief is nabbed by Grant during a hot pursuit. In real life, the Carlton bijou bandit is still at large.
Here are five reasons why Lucky Pierre, the latest Cat Burglar of Cannes, has so far been successful in what may turn out to be the largest jewelry heist in history.
OMG, is this the latest #traveltrend? The Sol Wave House hotel in beachy Mallorca, Spain, has officially become the world's first Twitter-themed hotel.
Not sure what that means?
Well, first-off, it means there are going to be a lot of #hashtags everywhere (and probably a few in this post as well #sorrynotsorry). Guests join a virtual community called #SocialWave, accessible only through the hotel's WiFi. Using that hashtag, they can then chat away with other guests and with the hotel's two Twitter concierges.
According to an online press release from Meliá Hotels International, the Sol Wave House's parent company, the whole experience “guarantees fun, new friendships, experiences, surprise, excitement and 'buzz'” and encourages guests to “flirt, compete in contests, share photos, etc.”
The route is the same one that Samuel Baker, a British officer, took with his wife in the 1860s. Traveling south from present-day South Sudan, the couple became the first Europeans to see what they would name Lake Albert, which marks the terminus of the new trail.
In a day and age where we’re constantly hounding websites, iPhone apps, and Twitter feeds for the best travel deals, it’s nice to know that serendipity still plays a role.
Eight years ago, two Québec girls threw a message in a bottle into Montréal’s St. Lawrence River, uncertain if their letter would ever be answered.
Fast-forward to 2013, and the same bottle has made it across the Atlantic Ocean and into the hands of ten-year-old Oisín Millea from County Waterford, Ireland. His spontaneous discovery (which he suitably deemed as ‘treasure’) stirred the hearts of Tourisme Québec minister Pascal Bérubé, who then invited Oisín and his family to the province for a 12-day visit, gratis. Besides meeting up with the two girls (now young women) to celebrate the bottle’s long-awaited arrival, the family trip will include visits to Montréal, Québec City, the Irish Memorial park on Grosse Ile, sleeping in a yurt, and whale watching on the St. Lawrence River.
To: Boss From: Mark Subject: Nude Recreation Week, July 7-14
I took a look at that press release from the American Association for Nude Recreation (AANR) and I think we should forget about posting something on "Nude Recreation Week." Let me explain why…
First, I'm personally kinda sick of the whole calendarization thing. I mean, July 28 is National Day of the Cowboy. Is that even necessary? And July 19-August 26 is National Fishing Month. First month I ever heard of that has 38 days. Now comes Nude Recreation Week. You think that was passed by Congress or something? It's a bunch of guys at a bar coming up with this stuff.
Besides, aren't you tired of this trend for naming different kinds of vacations? The AANR is calling nude holidays "Nakations." Oh, please. Remember "stay-cations" during the Recession? Cute. Summer camps all over the country are sponsoring "playcations." Look up "daycation" at Urban Dictionary. It's out of control. What's next? Calling medical tourism "X-ray-cations"? It's an abomination!
Finally, I think we really need to consider the health and safety-related issues with this Nude Recreation Week concept. For instance, the press release they sent out recommends that if you want to ease into this whole naked thing slowly you could "wash the family pet in the nude" (which is silly, since pets don't usually wear clothes in the first place) and "vacuum the house nude." I'm sorry but there are just too many ways you could hurt yourself doing that, and I don't want that responsibility on my (fully clothed) shoulders.
Anyway, if you really want a write-up on this I'll do it. But under protest.
Mark Orwoll is the International Editor of Travel + Leisure. You can followhim on Twitter @orwoll and Like him on Facebook.
Color wars. Village communities demarked by wildlife flags. A reveille bugle to wake us every morning. The 325 of us, ranging in ages from 19 to 67, were warned. We were prepped. But it was only when we stepped deep into the cover of 80 acres of cool redwoods in Anderson Valley (three hours north of San Francisco), into a 1970’s boy scout camp straight out of Wes Anderson’s wildest dream that we realized, finally, where we were.
And not just any camp. A camp for adults. Without electronic devices, computers, phones, lights, heat, or watches. We were not to speak about the “W” word (that would be work), what we did for a job (hereto forth to be called “fun” or “play”), and that revealing our names or ages would result in severe punishment (pulling out one another’s hair, strand by strand for each offense). We were asked to hand over our bags of iPads, Kindles, iPhones, Blackberries, digital cameras and a jumble of cords. Mine alone weighed 15 pounds and was giving me a lopsided walk; just one of the many reasons I had signed up for this experience. The offending devices went into a paper sack and were unceremoniously locked away as the campers (again, mostly me) whimpered softly.