We're excited to see friends and colleagues at The New York Times Travel Show today (and over the weekend when civilians go). But we're still left wondering why, for the past several years, is one whole continent significantly missing...Europe.
No France, no Visit Britain, no Belgium or Flanders, no Italy, Spain or Portugal, although there's plenty of talk of those destinations during the seminars and expert chats.
It seems like the European tourism boards collectively decided to take a powder on the Javits Center Winter "do" where the industry gets together to talk about "the new" Tuscany and the "new" Provence.
We here at TravelHushHush.com have been writing about "set-jetting" waaaay before other copycats started doing Oscar-related travel....
The whole movie-travel thing booms at Award time (but you'll see stories on film-related trips year round here!).
Now, Cheap-o-Air is getting on the Oscar bandwagon and offering travel to cities connected with nominated flicks. Like...
Her (LA) -- a vacation package to Los Angeles, California for a 4 night/5 day stay at Omni Los Angeles starting at $666 per person.
Boston- (American Hustle) a vacation package to Boston, Massachusetts for a 4 night/5 day stay at the Boston Omni Parker House Hotel starting at $800 per person.
New York (Wolf of Wall Street) fly to New York, New York for a 4 night/5 day stay at the Hilton Manhattan East starting at $961 per person.
New Orleans (Dallas Buyers Club) a 4 night/5 day stay at the Le Pavillon Hotel starting at $602 per person.
London (Philomena)you fly into Stansted Airport where they filmed scenes between Philomena (Judi Dench) and Martin Sixsmith (Steve Coogan) at locations around the terminal. Cheap-O is doing a vacation package to London, UK for a 4 night/5 day stay at the Park Plaza County Hall London starting at $1,402 per person.
These are cool but we want a Gravity package into OUTER SPACE with Richard Branson!
At a recent event here in New York with the Utah Tourism folks, we were treated to a sneak preview of classical music concerts planned this year for their National Parks (watch here for more info)...
Also from Utah are ThePianoGuys--a hearty band of musicians who decided to fuse Disney's great winter theme song from Frozen, "Let it Go," with Vivaldi's "Winter" from his famous Seasons suite. They played it surrounded by real ice and snow.
Even if we are longing to bid goodbye to Elsa's ice palaces, we love this YouTube video rendition of what is soon to be part of Broadway's biggest hit musical.
The Recording Academy (which administers and distributes the GRAMMY Awards) and marketing and travel company Sixthman, along with Norwegian Cruise Lines have announced the first GRAMMY Music Festival at Sea.
The first cruise will sail out to Grand Bahama Island and Nassau from November 4 to 8 with Shawn Colvin, Estelle, Skylar Grey, Emmylou Harris, Heart and Indigo Girls (all prior nominees or Grammy winners) aboard. More artists in a "Women Who Rock" theme are promised so keep watch with us.
Personally, we'd like to cruise with Patti Smith and Shirley Manson (Garbage), after all they are tagging women who rock...
If you look down at what you're wearing this brutal, snowbound winter and notice that it's a lot brighter than the yellowing white stuff you've been shoveling, Pantone says to blame it on globalization and travel.
In hawking their annual color forecast for next winter, Pantone Color Institute vice president, Laurie Pressman said, "In the past, as temperatures drop, consumers have typically retreated into darker shades of blacks and navies, but in our globally connected world, this is no longer the case."
"Today as we begin to feel more confident about our economic future and can see what our friends are wearing around the globe, consumers and businesses alike are yearning to engage in a dialogue with color not only during the warmer spring and summer time period but also during the misty and colder autumn and winter season."
Does this fuchsia snow suit make us look fat?
VisitLiverpool came to New York City last night to celebrate The Beatles at the site of the old Paramount Theatre (now the Hard Rock Cafe), the last venue the band played in on their 1964 US tour.
The Cavern Club Beatles tribute band played two sets to a packed house of travel journos and travel agents--one early and one late Beatles.
For our money the early Hard Day's Night-era set was best. As dyed-in-the-black-turtleneck-wool fans will tell you, the Fab Four never played Sgt. Pepper or Strawberry Fields-era songs in concert--by that time, they were a purely studio band.
There was also a stir when a "real Ringo" looking dude came out and played a set to huge applause and flashing backward selfies from the front row. Almost all of these were taken by kids too young to know that the "real Ringo" was just another "tributary."
Real or fake, the band brought Ed Sullivan days (complete with John's spread-legged power stance and CutePaul headshakes) to life and for a brief moment of time all we wanted to do was hold their hands!
Just as journos are blogging about the horrors of Sochi hotels, comes the news that flights from the US to Russia will not be able to allow carry-on liquids IN ANY SIZE FOR ANY REASON.
This means you little deodorant stick, and you too little toothpaste tube.
So if you're flying on a long haul flight to Sochi, expect to arrive in your barely functioning room stinking to high heaven with filmy teeth and very bad breath.
In a pinch those little bottles of Stoli distributed in-flight can be used as a mouthwash.
For those of us who have no idea what a seahawk really is, Boeing has an answer...it's a 747 8 Freighter painted with the winning Super Bowl champion's livery!
The Pacific Northwest-based aircraft manufacturer has been a sponsor for the team for over a decade.
"The Seahawks have been an inspiration to our entire community throughout this incredible season," said Boeing Commercial Airplanes President and CEO Ray Conner. "We're honored that we could join together two Northwest icons, the Seahawks and the 747, for this special salute from the entire Boeing team."
Boeing says the aircraft is being used for testing but we'd advise the pilots not to try to land at DEN!
It's Oscar campaigning time! All over the US, filmmakers are doing the rounds, corralling, cajoling, carousing and mostly, getting Academy members to vote for their movie in the 2014 Academy Awards.
Last night, Flemish director Felix van Groeningen and his leading lady Veerle Baetens were at New York's Flanders House (where the Flanders Tourism lives) to screen their poignant Oscar hopeful (for Best Foreign Film), The Broken Circle Breakdown.
The movie features the heart-rending story of a young couple (Veerle Baetens and Johan Heldenbergh) loving and ultimately losing their daughter to cancer and the aftermath of that "Broken Circle."
Didier (Heldenbergh) is a Kentucky Bluegrass performer who is in love with the "twang" of the banjo and American culture. His partner Elise is a free-spirited tattoo artist. When things turn tragic, Didier's love for the US turns to anger at George Bush et al for vetoing stem cell research.
TravelHushHush was asked at the screening if we thought US audiences would embrace the film, its love/hate relationship with American culture and its "cameos" by a televised George Bush.
Our take: Bring a box of Kleenex and expect to be thrilled by soulful performances and equally soulful versions of traditional Kentucky Bluegrass songs. Also expect that the incandescent Veerle Baetens may turn up in the next Quentin Tarantino or Steve McQueen film.
As the film industry takes a cue from the web and becomes more and more global, the next Christoph Waltz or Marion Cotillard could very well come from Flanders film fields...
White Lodging, a firm that manages Hilton, Marriott, Sheraton and Westin hotel franchises has been data hacked by credit card fraudsters.
The hack, reported today, took place between March 22 to December 31, 2013 in specific hotels in Chicago, Denver and LA.
Aren't we all getting a little fed up with our antiquated US un-chipped and un-PINed cards? Europe has long used the chip and pin system--a thorn in the side of travelers who often find their US cards refused because they don't comply.
Now, it seems that hospitality companies as well as other large, hacked concerns like Target are starting to call for the system to be laid onto our credit system.
We're also now being told that hackers can scan our cards through our wallets and bags, making those little aluminum and steel protector sleeves that protect your data from hacksters every travelers must have fashion item...
In a "Dear John" letter to staffers this Saturday, United Airlines CEO Jeff Smisek has broken up with Cleveland. "We have made the difficult decision to substantially reduce our flying from Cleveland," Smisek said. "We will make this reduction in stages beginning in April."
This is the airline equivalent of "I'm going to start boxing up my DVDs. Please don't hate me."
Smisek also said "Our hub in Cleveland hasn't been profitable for over a decade, and has generated tens of millions of dollars of annual losses in recent years. We simply cannot continue to bear these losses."
In Valentine's Day terms this translates into: "You know we haven't been sleeping together as much as before. I've been looking at Internet porn and dating your best friend on the side."
The airline will pull about 470 jobs from Cleveland and cut its flight schedule about 60 to 70 percent.
But we know that as soon as Cleveland has a couple of pints of Hagen Daz, tosses United's stuff on the sidewalk and bitches to her bestie, Chicago O'Hare, she'll get right back into her Blahniks and start dating again.