Essential news from around the world…
World tourism stages "spectacular rebound", says WTO
World tourism staged a "spectacular rebound" in the eight months to August, according to new figures from the World Tourism Organisation. The number of international tourist arrivals grew by 12% (or 58 million) to 562 million, led by a 37% boost to arrivals in Asia and the Pacific. North America registered a 12% rise after three years of losses, while arrivals in Europe increased by 6%. Here, the biggest growth was seen in Central and Eastern Europe (up by 16%) and the UK (up by 13%).
InterContinental plans more prototype Holiday Inns
Accor boosts nine-month turnover by 3.8%
Accor of France boosted group turnover by 3.8% to â¬5.3b (£3.7m) over the first nine months of 2004. Revenue from hotels also climbed by 3.8%, to â¬3.8b or £2.6m, while sales from other activities grew by 7.9% to â¬370m (£258m). Accor's other businesses include restaurants, casinos, on-board train services and travel agencies. In the year to September the group opened 154 new hotels with 19,000 bedrooms between them.
Fairmont reports solid growth in third quarter Fairmont Hotels and Resorts, which owns or manages 82 luxury properties in North America and the Middle East, increased third-quarter sales by 9.9% to $197.1m (£107m). Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation were up by 35.4% to $63.5m (£34.5m). In September, Fairmont signed an agreement to manage London's Savoy hotel.
Shangri-La plans new Traders hotel in China Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts is to manage a new four-star Traders hotel in Urumqi, the capital of China's Xinjiang region. The 39-storey, 500-bedroom hotel is due to open in the city's central business district in early 2007.
USA tourism on course for an upturn
Overseas tourism to the USA is set to recover after three years of decline, predicts the Travel Industry Association of America. It forecasts a 7.5% rise this year to 43 million arrivals, and a 5% boost next year to nearly 46 million. However, this is still short of the 51 million foreign tourists recorded in the peak year of 2000.
UAE's west coast to get its first five-star hotel The undeveloped west coast of the United Arab Emirates will get its first five-star property this autumn when the 109- bedroom Danat Resort Jebel Dhanna opens its doors 240km to the west of Abu Dhabi. It is owned by Danat Hotels and Resorts, a division of the government-backed National Corporation of Tourism and Hotels.
Americans prefer Italian, says guide publisher Zagat Italian is the most popular food for 31% of Americans, according to a survey by US restaurant and hotel guide publisher Zagat. Asia cuisine is the preferred fare for 25% but the popularity of French food has slipped to just 14% of the population. Zagat found that the national average cost of a meal has risen by 3.1% to $31.51 (£17.13) from $30.57 (£16.62). The average tip has grown from 18.4% to 18.6%.
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