British tourists organize sit-in after locals ruin luxury beach hotel

ClubHotel-Riu-Mere_2612508bHolidaymakers said their £12,000 Thomson vacation to the Dominican Republic was destroyed by locals who touched base on a shoddy package deal and caused chaos at the Club hotel Riu Merengue.

Visitors said the pool must be shut after the “tanked and rowdy” Dominicans used it as a lavatory, and said they even urinated on sun-loungers while people were lying on them.

Tony Walton, a sales manager from Doncaster, was on vacation with his wife Cheryl, 46, a registrar, their girl and boy aged 20 and 15, and four members of their extended family on a two-week break from June 30 to celebrate family birthdays and anniversaries.

He told the Mailonline: “People were peeing on the sun-loungers with people on them. These people had no respect for anything. They peed up against my sun lounger while I was lying on it.

“They were washing themselves down completely in the shower by the pool. What’s more there was no sustenance – they took at all.”

At the time they whined to staff about the disruption of their vacation, they say they were advised to take journeys -which they might need to pay for – to get away from the hotel.

Furthermore when Mr. Walton wanted his family to be moved to a different hotel, he says he was at first rejected assistance then afterward told if he moved he would have to pay an extra £1,800.

By July 4, Mr. Walton was angry to the point that he organized the sit-in at the Thompson desk in reception.

He says more than 160 complaining visitors went along with him and stayed camped at the desk for a day and a half, throughout which time he claims he was threatened by the manager.

Mr. Walton said in the end up to 100 people, incorporating his group, was moved to another hotel close-by with fewer facilities, but says he was offered just £30 remuneration.

“It has demolished our occasion and my wife’s birthday.

“I paid a lot of money and I have wasted it. Thomson have been totally pointless and Riu (the hotel chain) much worse.”

A spokesman for Thomson told Mailonline: “Thomson is sad to catch that Mr. Walton was disappointed with his stay at the Riu Merengue in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic.

“We are conscious that some clients expressed a disappointment with the levels of service throughout high occupancy and, as a gesture of goodwill, have moved them to a hotel nearby, and incorporating Mr. Walton’s party.

“Thomson takes client fulfillment quite important and is right now working with the hotelier to completely examine Mr. Walton’s grumbling.”

Dispersed Gorilla Groups Challenge Field Staff

April was a very busy month for the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund field staff. In addition to being the rainy season in Rwanda, which has not made the job of tracking any easier, we have both lost track of and found some important gorilla groups.

The newly formed Gushimira group had not been seen since March 24, and is not available for gorilla trekking, despite exhaustive efforts to locate them, and female Umusatsi, who had not been seen since she left Kuryama’s group March 17, was not located again until April 15 (still traveling alone). The anti-poaching team, as well as trackers from the Rwanda Development Board, have joined the groups’ regular trackers in the search efforts on several occasions.

UPDATE: Umusatsi finally joined Giraneza’s group on April 22. See our blog post for April 24, and expect more news about this adventurous female

While collaboration to find the dispersed gorillas is extremely important and useful, it is not without its drawbacks. According to Felix Ndagijimana, director of the Karisoke Research Center, when our anti-poaching teams have to support trackers in searches for missing gorilla groups, they cannot do their regular jobs of routine and shock patrols, which are also extremely important. “We do see a direct correlation in the field between the times when anti-poaching teams are not doing their patrols and spikes in the number of snares found later.”

Though the Gushimira group has caused us to use a lot of manpower in searching for them, Ndagijimana says that currently there is no other cause for concern for the groups’ wellbeing. “Before the Gushimira group formed, the individual silverback Gushimira had disappeared for quite a long time. We expect he has taken the females to another area he is familiar with and where he is more comfortable ranging. Of course, we will continue to look for them to confirm this.”

With our workforce already spread so thin due to the missing Gushimira group, it has been difficult to allocate trackers for Giraneza’s group, which recently returned to Rwanda and will soon be available for visitors on Rwanda gorilla safaris and tours. We stopped monitoring that group in Sept. 2012 when they crossed the border into the Democratic Republic of Congo. Our first encounter with them since their disappearance was on Jan. 29. We were happy to see Giraneza and the two females, Taraja and Nyandwi, all together, although Nyandwi seemed to have an injury on her left arm. Since that first sighting in January, we encountered them seven more times in February and March, during which time we were able to confirm that Nyandwi’s injury had healed. In a meeting with the group on March 22 when we found Giraneza interacting with Bwenge’s group, we happily discovered that Taraja had given birth. The infant was estimated to be a week old at the time and in very good health, which continues to be the case.

With the return of Giraneza’s group, we have reorganized our tracker teams yet again. The Gushimira team is now being used to monitor Giraneza’s group, except when they are searching for the Gushimira group, which is currently limited to two days a week.

Ndagijimana cited a recommendation of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s Best Practice Guidelines for Great Ape Tourism as one of the reasons why it was essential for us to resume monitoring the group: “Of course, our wish is to be able to monitor all the habituated groups, for scientific research purposes, but it is particularly important to carry out regular monitoring and protection of groups that have been habituated to humans, as their habituation leaves them more vulnerable to threats like poachers.” The need to monitor the group is even more important with the discovery of the new infant, as infants have low survival rates. Partial monitoring of the group resumed in March, with full-time monitoring having resumed in mid April.

Giraneza
Reconnecting with the Giraneza group has been very exciting, and we are looking forward to finding Gushimira’s group, as the monitoring of both groups has particular significance for the Fossey Fund. As Gorilla Program Manager Veronica Vecellio puts it, “In 45 years of gorilla monitoring we have had very few occurrences of a solitary male forming his own group. Gushimira’s and Giraneza’s groups are examples of this, so they give us an excellent opportunity to investigate and compare the development of newly established groups.”

These events in the field this past month — losing track of Gushimira’s group and finding Giraneza’s group — have caused us to consider the possibility of hiring more trackers and the potential need to adjust our methods of tracking when there are major changes such as group splits, missing groups and the return of old groups. In times of major shifts in the gorilla groups we monitor, we need to be able to accommodate all of the groups for both scientific purposes and as a responsibility deriving from our habituation of them. There is no easy answer, but we are working to find the best solution, for our organization, for our trackers and for our gorillas. Read more about Rwanda travel tips on the internet, more information is available.

Tourism industry offers the best jobs in west Australia

The Australian tourism industry is providing more jobs than any other sector. A recent study reveals that Tourism will overtake mining and construction as one of the biggest employers in West Australia (WA).

The annual “report card” compiled by Tourism Research Australia showed tourism jobs in WA grew 11.25 per cent to 89,000 in the past financial year, the biggest increase of any State.

Tourism accounts for 7 per cent of all jobs in the State, just behind mining with 8 per cent, construction 10 per cent and health care and social assistance, the top employer with 11 per cent.

Tourism Council chief executive Evan Hall said tourism would become more important to the WA economy as the resources boom slowed.

“The trend is for tourism jobs to grow as mining jobs decline,” he said. “With the lower Australian dollar, cheaper hotel rates and more flights to Perth, WA can win back the leisure tourists we lost over the last few years.”

Mr. Hall said in all other States tourism employed more people than mining.

“Tourism would create more jobs than mining in WA, too, if it got the same backing from government,” he said. “Over the next few years, tourism can replace the lost mining jobs, so long as WA doesn’t keep putting all its eggs in the resources basket.”

Owen Williams, director of Segway Tours WA, said it was time for WA’s tourism industry to blossom.

Mr. Williams, who expects to start Segway tours of Perth city next month, said there was big demand for innovative tourism businesses.

“With the devaluation of the Australian dollar, mining slowing and increased interest from the Chinese market, I think this demand for new tourism experiences will only go up,” he said.

Brussels Airlines introduces free digital newspapers for passengers

Brussels-AirlineIntroducing some compelling features, Brussels Airlines passengers who check in online receive a free digital copy of their newspaper thanks to a unique collaboration with publishers De Persgroep and Rossel. Passengers can choose from a wide selection of newspapers on the day of their flight on any route of the Brussels Airlines network.

E-newspapers have gained popularity over the last years, and news sites get more and more visits. Thanks to a collaboration between Brussels Airlines and the Belgian publishers De Persgroep and Rossel, Brussels Airlines’ 6 million passengers can now enjoy a free newspaper on their laptop, tablet or smart phone while they travel.

The growing number of passengers that check in online for a Brussels Airlines flight can now not only select their plane seat and save time at the airport, but they are also invited to select a newspaper, for which they will receive an access code.

Free for all passengers
This new service is free for b.light economy, b.flex economy+ and b.business passengers on European flights, as well as for Economy- and Business Class passengers on intercontinental flights to the United States and Africa. Passengers can choose from a selection of popular Belgian and Dutch newspapers: Het Laatste Nieuws, De Morgen, De Tijd, Le Soir, l’Echo, La Meuse, La Capitale, Nord Eclair, La Province, De Volkskrant, AD, Het Parool and Trouw. The aim is to expand the offer with more foreign newspapers as well as magazines soon. Negotiations are ongoing.

“This is a good example of how Brussels Airlines responds to the rapidly changing consumer needs”, says Anne Tricot, VP Customer Experience at Brussels Airlines. “A lot of passengers consult news sources on their computer or tablet. With the e-paper service we are the first airline to respond to this digitization trend. We expect that the service will be a success and that it will motivate more people to check in online for their flight.”

At this stage, the free e-paper service does not entail that Brussels Airlines will not distribute newspapers to b.business or b.flex economy+ passengers anymore, although it is expected that the number of paper newspapers on board the nearly 300 daily Brussels Airlines flights, will drop significantly. That’s a good thing for the environment thanks to both the paper saving and the weight reduction of the planes.

Continued Growth Sees Excellent Five Months for Tourism

tourism new zealand(1)Tourism New Zealand says another trend in guest arrivals is currently obvious, with total yearly international arrival figures released today in development for the first time since the Rugby World Cup 2011.

International guest entries are up 0.5% year-on-year and 8.7% for the month – making it the most highest ever come about for a May month. The increment in arrivals translates to an additional 224,480 stay days for the month.

Justin Watson, Tourism New Zealand’s acting Chief Executive says; “When we take a gander at the first five months of 2013 we see a significant upwards shift in arrivals – with total landings up 5.8% against the same period a year ago and holiday entries up 9.4%.”

The solid landings seen throughout summer and autumn continue to be administered with all the tourism sector’s center markets in development. For the month of May Australia, the source of 45% of New Zealand’s entries, is up by an exceptionally solid 12.3%. Tourism New Zealand’s other top five markets are additionally all in development: China (30.2%), Japan (8.6%), UK (0.3%), Germany (7.1%) and the USA (6.0%).

Justin notes that the outcomes are especially supporting for the long-haul western markets, which have been struggling for quite a while, and helps the positive effect seen from the investment in marketing New Zealand’s association with the Hobbit trilogy.

“A month ago International Visitor review indicated that 8.5% of all international guests surveyed between January and March said The Hobbit was a factor in animating their interest in New Zealand as a destination.

“With proceeded development through May from nexus target markets for the campaign, for example the USA, it is clear the 100% Middle-earth, 100% Pure New Zealand campaign is attaining its objectives – giving the extra reason and motivation to change interest in a vacation to New Zealand into a true booking.”

Furthermore the picture looks positive as the sector heads into the winter time of year.

“With the record snow levels seen a week ago over the nation it would appear that we are well placed for a sterling winter season for ski resorts and the wider industry.”

From 1 July, Tourism New Zealand will be executing its new Three Year Marketing Strategy, with increased subsidizes being committed over four key areas of its business: International business occasions, developing markets, high-value premium voyage and the up-scaling of particular action in core markets.

Tourism Ministry of India proposes Visa on Arrival for 30 nations!

visa-on-arrival-counterTo push and boost the tourism business in India, the tourism minister K Chiranjeevi proposed another list of nations to the home ministry, who will be served with an inventive facility of visa-on arrival (VoA). China additionally offers in the list as it has ended up being one of the potential markets for all tourism co-operations and tour operators of the world.

“We have proposed Visa-on-Arrival (VoA) office for 30 nations incorporating Germany, France, Korea, Russia and China,” Tourism Minister K Chiranjeevi told in a meeting. Implying China, he said there is “exceptionally great potential” the extent that tourism is concerned.

The proposal must be cleared by Home Ministry, he said. Under the VoA office, a traveler can head off straight to the planned country and get visa at the airport itself. The countries for which this office has been proposed incorporate US, UK, Canada, Germany, France, Russia, Spain, Italy and Korea. As per sources, China is additionally on the list of countries. China sends around 1.5 lakh vacationers to India each year incorporating numerous travelers to the Buddhist circuit.

Asked if the VoA office might be on proportional foundation, the actor-turned-minister said, “We need proportional also, however that is the next step. First and foremost, we need to welcome them.”

Right now, India has developed VoA offices to 11 countries incorporating Singapore, Japan, New Zealand, Vietnam and Philippines. The approval of the home ministry might mean the list will feature 41 countries now.

“We have had two sets of productive discourses with the home minister and he has guaranteed to acknowledge our list,” tourism minister K Chiranjeevi told news people. Provided that the current proposal is approved, the number of nations with VoA offices will increase to 41.

As of late, India marked a settlement with France for quick issuance of visa for diplomats. Chiranjeevi said easing of visa administration might assist support foreign tourists landings. The point is to guarantee that India has no less than 1% impart in international tourist arrivals, he said. India’s offer in world tourist arrivals, at present, is about of 0.64%.

Tourism had prompted earnings to the tune of Rs 94,487 crore as foreign exchange last fiscal as the sector witnessed development of 4.3% last year with 65,77,745 foreigners visiting India against 63,09,222 vacationers the past year.

Red Lion Hotels Completes Expansion of its Credit Facility with Wells Fargo

Red Lion Hotel Corporation today affirmed the company has finished the extension of its credit facility agreement for Wells Fargo Bank. Under the secured office, Red Lion Hotels acquired $45 million in a term loan with a 15-year amortization developing in June 2018. Continues from the term loan were used to refinance approximately $38 million in developing CMBS debt and pay expenses in association with the transaction. The remainder will be utilized to invest into capital expenditure and for general corporate purposes.

Furthermore, a $10 million two-year rotating line of credit is accessible under the facility. The company has vowed 19 Red Lion properties as security for the new agreement.

“Our enhanced balance sheet has led to more ideal terms with the signing of the expanded Wells Fargo credit office,” said Julie Shiflett, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for Red Lion Hotels Corporation. “Presently, we have more flexibility, incorporating no punishments for prepayment. The additional funds got will permit us to take advantage of franchise development chances and reinvest in our owned hotels to proceed to improve upon the guest experience.”

“Since June 2011, Red Lion Hotels has lessened its debt by over $58 million and obtained $37 million of rented properties using proceeds from the sale of assets,” said Shiflett.

I love Uganda Gorilla Trekking and Wildlife Safari

Uganda gorilla trekking

Uganda gorilla trekking

I have been to a number of safaris in Africa, however the Gorilla trekking safaris in Uganda are probably the best ones that I have ever been to. They are so exceptionally wild and it is nice to have the ability to spot the gorillas! I hate those safaris that didn’t offer any tour guides. Those are rather boring and daunting to look into. I know what I like, and its safaris with animals.

Otherwise, what is the point!? I realize that there are many people these days that are willing to really pay for this sort of experience, but to me, these things are rather inexpensive. They are something you’re going to take with you for the rest of your life too. You can’t forget what you see here. It’s simply something that should be experience and not explained. Words can’t portray what I felt during my little trip. It was almost unreal, yet you realized that the gorillas were right there.

You Have the Mountain Gorillas in Their Natural Environment

I have been abroad more then once and until this last safari I have to say seeing the world was exceptionally over rated. Europe was crowded and faintly hostile and everything there was so dirty and unkempt. Asia was considerably more crowded and rude and as for Australia, well we learned that everything in the country is either harmful or large enough to eat you.

So when my husband suggested that for our next trip abroad we attempt one of the Uganda Gorilla Trekking safaris I wasn’t too certain. Well I am happy to say the safari put my feelings of trepidation to rest. The people were so wonderfully friendly it was like we were there as guests. The scenery was totally lovely, the kind of scenery you think you’ll only see in movies. Furthermore the wildlife, my goodness, until you have seen Gorillas in the wild you really haven’t seen them. It was the best vacation we’ve ever had.

Adventure travel and natural beauty combine in Essaouria

If your to go on a vacation to Morocco, do not miss to visit Essaouria

essaouira (24)

Safaris to Morocco offer some of the most exceptional experiences in Africa. From the snow topped Atlas Mountains to the arid desert to the clamoring city of Fes, there is a dazing amount of variety in this small country. While there are numerous choices to be made about what to add to your itinerary, it’s critical to make sure you incorporate Essaouria. This excellent coastal city has been a center point of activities for centuries and has plenty of activities to offer during your safari to Morocco.

The neighborhood of Skala de la Ville is certainly one of the highlights of Essaouria. You might acknowledge the area’s ramparts from Orson Welles’ acclimatization of Othello; however it has a much more to offer than a beautiful setting to the movies. The small area of the city likewise offers some of the best coastal perspectives you’ll not find anywhere in the country, and the fact that the streets are lined with 18th and 19th century European cannons lends an authentic component to this must-see destination.

There’s more to Essaouria than its perspectives, on the other hand. It is additionally an incredible place to visit provided that you’re searching for animated pursuits. There are various chances for guided camel rides along the beach and into the desert, and boat rides can take you out on the water to the islands placed just off shore. But if you truly need to get your adrenaline pumping, you can try your hand at kitesurfing or windsurfing. The two activities are to greatly popular and thanks to the city’s location on the coast and fairly consistent winds, the conditions there are practically impeccable.

Head to Marrakech during your tour of Morocco

For variety during your tour of Morocco, head to Marrakech, Jamaa el Fna square
A Safari to Morocco offers tourists the opportunity to experience sights and sounds they won’t find anywhere else. The North African hotspot is rich in cultural tradition, and it’s a desert landscape gives an extraordinary adventure voyage chances. There are various cities that you should incorporate in your schedule, and Marrakech is positively among them. The fourth-biggest city in the country, Marrakech has something to offer everyone, if you’re looking to explore Morocco’s celebrated street markets or experience its burgeoning nightlife.

Assuming that you’re searching for something to do during the day in Marrakech, the Majorelle Garden is your best wager. This breathtaking garden was designed by world well known French painter Jacques Majorelle and initially opened its doors for business in 1947. The sprawling scene is well-known for being home to various cacti and bougainvillea blooms, plus more than dozen species of birds that are local to North Africa. The garden is additionally beautifully intended to incorporate wellsprings and beautiful walkways. Before you leave, make sure to visit the Museum of Islamic Art that is located on site.

While the Majorelle Garden offers a short reprieve from the busy city boulevards, you’ll need to get out and encounter all Marrakech has to offer once the sun sets. There are various places you can visit, however Jamaa el Fna square stands above the rest. A major tourist center, the square is home to everything from sustenance vendors to snake charmers and entertainers. The square has a tendency to come to be more active as the night wares on and will offer a sight into one of the most popular destinations in Morocco.

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