News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Golf grows as Argentinean tourist attractiveness

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Golf grows as Argentinean tourist attractiveness
The executive secretary of the National Institute of Tourist Promotion affirmed that the golf is among the tourist niches of major growth in Argentina and in the United Kingdom and it is one of the main markets in this sector. From Salta Mountains in the north of the country passing by Buenos Aires in the south to the end of the world in Patagonia, Argentina has 300 fields to satisfy all the golfer’s pleasures. Also, there are other 15 courses of first category currently under construction, some of them designed by Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player, Greg Norman and Marck Adams.

Howard Johnson has expanded
The Howard Johnson chain will place a hotel in Vicente López in the suburbs of Buenos Aires and before the end of the year this will fix other four inaugurations. In Vicente López, the establishment will have 18 floors and 450 rooms and its building will have an investment of US$90 million. For the rest of the year, the chain affirmed openings of new hotels in Formosa, Córdoba, Zapala (Neuquén) and Río Tercero (Córdoba).

URUGUAY
IVA will be returned to tourists
The government approved the returning of 85.97 percent of IVA for nonresident tourists who buy national products more than US$60 in a same shop which will be used or consumed abroad, in Uruguay. The mechanism would be in force in October when the promotion will start to the new summer season. Products have to be labeled with the inscription “Made in Uruguay”, “Uruguay Industry” or other equivalent.

Season of whales seeing began
Uruguay have recently begin officially the season of Frankish southern lands whales seeing, in order to take advantage of cetaceans dozens in the coasts of the east of the country. The natural show will be extended until October.

BRAZIL
Airports of Galeao and Guarulhos will be able to receive A380
The president of Infarero informed that the airports of Galeao (RJ) and Guarulhos (SP) will be adapted to receive the A380. In Galeao, a third floor will be constructed in one of the terminus for passengers and the track will be enlarge, while in Galeao , the track of taxis will be also modified.

Rio de Janeiro wants a U2 for the end of the year
The secretary of Tourism informed that the Coast Guard is negotiating with the producers of U2, a free presentation of the Irish group on Copacabana beach for the end of the year.

Hotel rooms in Isla de Pascua are sold out one year before of the sun eclipse
On July 11th, 2010, a total eclipse will leave Isla de Pascua in semidarkness; this placed is located in the middle of the Pacific Ocean where there are not more hotel reservations to one year of the astronomical show. The eclipse will get dark during 4 minutes and 45 seconds the Oriental zone of the Polynesia where Isla de Pascua is. The event got excited tourists and scientific inhabitants, around the world, who have made reservations of the 1,500 hotel rooms that the island offers.

CHILE
Caral will double the number of visitors
After the Declaration of the Sacred City of Caral-Supe as a humanity cultural heritage by Uneso, it is expected to double the number of visitors that come attracted to know traces of the first civilization of America placed in the province of Lima, Barranca and it plans to close the year with 90 thousand visitors. Caral belongs to the archaic period late (3,000 to 1,800 years before Christ). This is located in Valle de Supe to 158 kilometers to the north of Lima. This is one of the settlements identified in the valley and it has an extension of 66 hectares approximately.

PERU
LAN will fly to Cali via Quito
LAN PERU adds Cali (Colombia) as a new international destination which people will be able to arrive three times a week via Quito from August 15th in Airbus 319, with capacity for 144 passengers.

TACA duplicates flights to Cusco
Since August 15th, Taca airlines will double its operation to Cusco offering two daily flights from and to Lima. This new flight will leave from Lima at 10:15 am, returning from Cusco at 1:25 pm.

Cadena Aranwa will invest US$36.5 million in five new hotels
The Vice-President of Operations stated that Aranwa Hotels, Resorts& Spas will invest US$36.5 million until 2013 in five new hotels, in the south circuit of the country in the departments of Cusco, Arequipa, Puno and Ica, . The company wants to operate seven hotels in the next five years, all of them with a marked health concept and spa. The investment more approach belongs to the construction of a five star hotel in the city of Cusco with 41 rooms and with a cost of US$8 million.

ECUADOR
Galápagos between the 28 finalist of the new 7 natural wonders
The Foundation New 7 Wonders mentioned the results of “The New 7 Natural Wonders of the World” competition. Galápagos Islands and Amazonia passed to the final phase of the competition.

COLOMBIA
International arrivals grow 9.4 percent
Colombia received 638,000 foreign visitors in the first semester, 9, 4 percent more than in the same period of 2008 according to the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism. According to the minister of industry, these data affirmed that crisis did not stop the tourist growth in Colombia while in the world; the tourism decreases 8 percent due to the current economical crisis

IHG will open six hotels more
To the recent inauguration of the Holiday Inn Express Hotel, in the north of Bogotá, InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) adds other projects of the signature in Bogotá. The growth plan plans to build between five and six hotels more in Bogotá, another one in Medellín, one in Cartagena and other in Barranquilla.

PANAMA
Hotels will reduce costs until 25 percent
Before the fall of the hotel activity during the first five months of 2009, the government and the private sector consider a contingency plan which contemplates cuttings until 25 percent in the hotel and restaurants prices, besides companies that renders services to tourists. The authority of Tourism from Panama indicated that to this initiative have added 20 hotels, 12 operators of tourism and several gastronomical establishments. It is planed that the respective discount comes into force on August 1st and this will be lasted until October 31st.

COSTA RICA
Riu builds a hotel in the north of the Pacific
Riu invests US$150 million in its first hotel in this country which expects to inaugurate in November on a beach of the north of the Pacific. The five star hotel will have 701 rooms and this will be placed in a land of 380 hectares in Matapalo beach to 285 kilometers to northwest from San José which will be only built in 19 hectares. In the same land it is planned the building of the second level of five star too, under the brand Palace.

MEXICO
Ciudad Mujeres will be the new Mexican spa
Authorities of the zone stated that Mexico plans to build in the Caribbean, a spa with more than 50,000 hotel rooms and dozens of thousand of houses which could compete in Cancún. The plan, to 30 years, is building Ciudad Mujeres, Nuevo Destino del Sol and beaches above 15,500 hectares of lands placed in 25 kilometers to the north of Cancún. Hotels, condominium towers, thematic parks and golf courses will be built.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

SOUTH AMERICA
The Inca road system would be named World Heritage before UNESCO

SME in Travel? Click here!

SOUTH AMERICA
The Inca road system would be named World Heritage before UNESCO
Six South American countries will present before UNESCO their advances to a future nomination of The Inca road system (Qhapaq Ñan) as a humanity cultural heritage. National Committee managers of Qhapaq Ñan from Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru will have a meeting in Lima, between 20 and 26 of this month, with high ranking-official of the Center of UNESCO Heritage in order to carry out this humanity cultural heritage statement in 2011.

ARGENTINA
Palacio Duhau- Park Hyatt was elected as the best hotel of the region by Travel+Leisure
Travel+Leisure announced that Palacio Duhau-Park Hyatt Buenos Aires was elected as the best hotel of the center city and South America 2009 in its traditional ranking “World´s Best Awards”. As well as being number one in Latin America, while Nuevo Clásico in Buenos Aires has the eleven position in “The top 100 Hotels Overall” which classifies the best hotels around the world.

BRAZIL
Three attractiveness continue in competition of the 7 Natural Wonders.
The archipelago of Fernando de Noronha (Pernambuco), The Amazon and the Iguaçú Falls (Paraná) are the three attractiveness from Brazil which continue competing by a place between “The New 7 Natural Wonders of the World” after they were spread in Zurich, Suiza, the names of the chosen places by the foundation “New 7 Wonders” which is the competition organizer. The only attractiveness which Brazil participates exclusively is Fernando de Noronha. The selections of The Amazon and the Iguaçú Falls are shared with other countries.

EL AL is authorized to carry out regular flights
EL AL which was operating from May has already the temporary authorization to carry out three weekly flights between Sao Paulo and Tel Aviv. It is planned daily flights for next year.

Watching season of whales was started
Playa do Rosa, Environmental Protection Area (APA) of Ballena Franca placed in the south of Estado de Santa Catarina started Season 2009 of whales watching, these whales will be able to be seen until October near to the coast approximately to 30m.

CHILE
Air Canada will daily fly to Santiago with B777-300ER
From December 2nd, Air Canada will increase its capacity in its route from Santiago to Toronto and to Buenos Aires when daily flying in its new Boeing 777. The initiative will be extended up to March 28th.

BOLIVIA
Sonesta inaugurated two hotels
Sonesta opened two hotels in the country, in Gran Concepción and in the city of Osorno, in the region of Los lagos. The first one is the first hotel which has a qualification of 5 stars; also it has 120 rooms between them 20 suites, 20 doubles and 80 Kings rooms as well as lounges, meeting rooms, swimming pools, a solarium and a complete gymnasium. The establishment of Osorno is placed in the Plaza Sol de los Lagos Complex, a strategic place of the city because it also includes the casino and several commercial places.

PERU
Casa Kalfu has a new boutique hotel in Puerto Varas
Casa Kalfu is completing the last details for its next opening in December of this year. It will have 14 rooms decorated in a fine way, a first category equipment, meeting rooms, bar and restaurants. The hotel is placed to 100 m of Lago Llanquihue.

The largest recreational park is inaugurated in La Paz
With an area of 21 hectares of green area land, the largest Ecological Recreational Park of Bolivia was inaugurated in La Paz, in the region of Pura, to the north of the Government’s seat city. The fairground has an artificial lagoon, a fiberglass slide, a suspension bridge of 60m, two synthetic grass courts, three cement slides with an average length of 40m, a sport field with sand and a circuit trotters.

Cusco is among the 20 most important tourist cities around the world
Cusco is in the 16th position of the most popular tourist cities in the world, according to an online survey carried out by Travel + Leisure magazine. The Incas City exceed in the ranking to Jerusalem (Israel), Siem Reap (Camboya), Quebec (Canada) and Kyoto (Japan). In that list, the cities of Barcelona (Spain), London (England) and Paris (France) were not included.

Jorge Chavez Airport was nominated as the best in South America
One more time, the International Airport of Jorge Chavez has been nominated as the best airport in South America by the organizers of World Travel Awards which is the competition that highlights excellence in the tourism and travel industry worldwide. Also, Machupicchu and the city of Lima were elected as the best South American destination, and Callao as the best port in the region.

LAN PERU to Cordova since August
LAN PERU will operate from August 5th, five weekly flights to Cordoba – Argentina, on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays with A319.

ECUADOR
Galapagos Islands are the “Best of the Region”
Travel + Leisure magazine honored the Galapagos Islands with the award of the “Best Island” in the category of Mexico region, Central America and South America, and, with the second place in the category of the “Best Island Worldwide.” This prize is a recognition to the effort and commitment that the National Government has to promote the sustainable management of this important tourist destination.

Aero Cuenca will begin operations in September
On September 14th, Aero Cuenca will begin operating a new airline which will fly between Quito, Guayaquil, Cuenca and Loja with an Embraer 145, with capacity for 30 people. The base of operations will be the city of Cuenca, with direct flights Quito-Quito-Cuenca, Loja-Loja-Quito with two direct frequencies from Monday to Friday and Saturday and Sunday Quito-Macas-Quito, Quito, Machala, Quito, Cuenca Guayaquil-Cuenca. Subsequently cross-border flights will be increased to Cajamarca, Chiclayo and Piura, in Peru.

Wax Museum will be ready for the bicentennial
The Wax Museum began its conceptual scenic transformation process. A total of 10 statues will be added to the cultural showground, placed in the Metropolitan Cultural Center of Quito. The 18 existing will be replaced in modified settings. Among the characters that will be included are Simón Bolívar and Antonio José de Sucre.

COLOMBIA
Aero República begins to fly from Barranquilla to Panama, in August
Aero República will start a new flight in the route Barranquilla – Panama which will operate three times a week from August 7th.

MEXICO
Mexico City premieres 38 tourist routes since this summer\
The Mexico City premieres 38 tourist routes designed to promote, value and introduce the capital of this country as a “diverse and attractive” destination. These routes will operate until August 21st, as part of the “Programa Turismo para ti” (“Tourism Program for You”).

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Plays are canceled in all the country

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Plays are canceled in all the country
“For reasons of force majeure”, plays are canceled during next 10 days in Argentina meanwhile cinemas will postpone premieres. The Argentinian Association of Theater Impresarios announced that it decided to cancel the theater activity in the country during 10 days to help avoiding that the Influenza A virus spreads.

Aerolíneas Argentinas program again direct fights to Trelew-Sao Paulo
The measure is due to the health situation that Influenza A causes and for the alerts that the Brazilian government has been announced to the population of this country. The operation was programmed for September.

Andes will promote Ruta del Vino in its flights
Since this week, Andes Líneas Aéreas and some wine shops from Salta will promote wines of the zone, in the flights of Andes from Buenos Aires to Salta. The purpose is to consolidate Ruta del Vino from Salta as a high range tourist product.

Design Suites was opened in Salta
With an investment of US$ 8 million, the group Solanas opened a hotel of its Desing Suite chain in the city of Salta. The establishment placed in the city center has 51 rooms divided up in nine floors.

BRAZIL
Pluna will fly to Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia
The Aeronautical Committee authorized to extend to 10, the weekly frequencies for the flights to Asunción and it approved to cover with airplanes and Uruguayan pilots the flight from Asunción to Santiago de Chile which the airline has a share code with LAN and TAM. Besides that, it authorized to flight from Montevideo to Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia which Pluna has to submit a formal application.

PERU
TAM expands share code with BMI
Since July 7th, TAM and BMI expanded their share code to include the city of Dublin. By means of this agreement, clients of both airlines in Brazil and Ireland can enjoy simplified reservations procedures, also having a connection with only one ticket for only checking the luggage until the final destination.

Titicaca, Amazonas and Colca between the 77 nominated Natural Wonders
The New Seven Wonders Foundation which is the foundation that organizes the competition announced that Lake Titicaca, the Colca Canyon and the Jungle of Amazonas were included in the list of 77 nominated from the competition. They were chosen after the end of the vote process on July 7th. The final 28 will be elected by a committee of experts and they will be announced on July 21st. The elected 28 will enter to the final stages until the middle of 2011.

More than 42 thousand of tourist visited Huaca de la Luna in the first three- month period of the year
La huaca de la Luna (La Libertad) received until June, 42,780 visitors, 4 percent of the registered visits during the same period of 2008. La huaca de la Luna was the ceremonial religious center of the mochica mythology also of the construction, la huaca de la Luna is emphasized by having temples which were built and superimposed in different periods.

It is discovered a Pre-Hispanic road in Machupicchu
A group of specialist discovered a Pre-Hipsanic road in the National Historic Sanctuary of Machupicchu. This road possibly started from the archeological complex of Wuaraqtambo, it moved upward to the summit of Machupicchu and went down to the Inca citadel. The road discovered is made of stone masonry, approximately it has 1 meter width, walls that supports its slope reach between 4 and 5 meters high and it has a front although, various stretch have brought to a standstill.

Huaca Chotuna – Chornancap Museum will open its doors in 30 days, in Lambayeque
In 30 days, Huaca Chotuna – Chornancap Museum will open its doors; this is placed in the city of Lambayeque, place that will show finds and studies done three years ago to national and international community.

Taca will fly to Cali
Since August 17th, TACA will add to its wide route network in the region of the city of Cali- Colombia, it will offer a direct flight to this city via Guayaquil- Ecuador, four times a week.

ECUADRO
Guayaquil plans new airport
The local foundation, The Airport Authority of Guayaquil, gave definitive studies about the aeronautical feasibility of the future intercontinental airport of Guayaquil which confirms Chongón – Daular zone as the place that meets necessary characteristics for its operation. The new airport will have 3 parallel tracks that will be able to operate simultaneously; one of them will be of 4,100 meters length with international category to be useful to airplanes such as Airbus 380 or Boeing 747-400ER, and the rest will be of 3,500 meters length. All of them will have 60 meters width.

Courtyard by Marriott will be opened in Guayaquil
This month, Courtyard by Marriott will open an establishment in the north of Guayaquil; this establishment will increase the hotels number of four or five star of the city to 11. The hotel offers 144 rooms basically to executive tourism. Courtyard is placed in the economic heart of the city, it means near to centers such as public offices, to the building of the Chamber of Production, commercial centers and other luxury hotels such as Hilton Colon.

COLOMBIA
IHG plans to operate eight hotels in Bogotá
After the inauguration of Holiday Inn Express in the north of Bogotá, Managers from InterContinental Hotel Group (IHG) informed that this chain has planned to open six hotels more of this brand in the capital, in medium term, meanwhile Medellin, Cartagena and Barranquilla plan to develop new projects which allow them to continue with their positioning. Also, IHG plans to open one Holiday Inn and one InterContinental in the capital of the Republic.

VENEZUELA
Aeropostal would return to The Caribbean
Aeropostal informed that it reincorporated the fourth DC9-50 to its fleet as a part of a reactivation plan that in medium term, it desires to recover international routes beginning with the Caribbean.

MEXICO
Definitely Aviacsa is canceled
The government cancelled Aviacsa operations due to debts that are not paid off of US$ 22 million by tax concepts about the use of the overhead space which the company must pay before flying again. The cancellation was taken after a judge left “without effect” a judicial protection in favor of the airline granted in 2008.

Grupo Xcaret opens new park in Cancun
Grupo Xcaret opened a new park in Cancun, Quintana Roo, where it invested US$ 22 million. The new project named Xplor is an underground park which allows visitors to submerge in a sea of stalactites and stalagmites also navigate a raft by underground paths, land on water after a flight in the jungle or drive an amphibious vehicle. New facilities have a capacity of 1,200 people and are looking for turning into one of the greatest attractiveness of the resort.

New connection from Maya Island Air to Belice since Cancun
Maya Island Air opened a new direct connection between Cancun and Belice. The beginning of operations is supported with the resolution of Foreign Affairs Secretariat which came into force on July 1st and eliminates the visa requirement to enter to Mexico for residents from Belice. The shuttle service started with three aircraft ATS from French manufacture with capacity for 68 passengers each one of them; they will offer a daily direct frequency.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Tickets for the Patagonian Train are already for sale.

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Tickets for the Patagonian Train are already for sale.
The Patagonian Train is selling tickets for next winter vacation. This year will have only one frequency on Fridays returning on Sundays.

Lan Argentina will join Córdoba and Lima
From July 12th, LAN Argentina starts its flights from Córdoba to Lima. It will have two weekly frequencies from Monday to Sunday and it will be carried out with A 320 aircrafts.

South African Airways has one new frequency between BUE and Johannesburg
SAA added one new frequency between Buenos Aires and Johannesburg flying in that way on Wednesday, on Fridays and on Saturdays with 340-200 Airbus with 24 seats in Business Class and 226 in Economical Class.

BRAZIL
Rotary Club International Meeting, in 2015, in Sao Paulo.
So Paulo has been chosen to be venue of the Rotary Club World Convention in 2015. Last time that the city had this event was in 1981, registering a total of 17 thousand people of 94 countries. Icca estimates that in 2015, 40 thousand people will attend.

It is opened the first Central of Express Tourism
Brahma Bar and Sao Paulo Circuit inaugurated the first unit Central of Express Tourism in Sao Paulo Capital; this will bring total information service in Portuguese, English and Spanish. The first unit is placed on the corner of Av. Ipiranga with AV. Sao Joao in Brahma Bar. The city will open new kiosks with live attention also auto- assisted or online in bars and commercial centers. The first kiosk in a commercial center will be inaugurated at the beginning of August in Frei Caneca Shopping and then in the O Torcedor Bars placed in Plaza Charles Muller and in the Bar Brahma Aeroclub in Campo de Marte in the north of Sao Paulo.

American Airlines renewed its lounge in Guarulhos
American Airlines completed the Admiral Club Lounge renewal at the airport of Guarulhos. This is located in Terminal 2, in the D of the mezzanine level, now has 6,621 square feet and with a space for more than 220 passengers. The lunge shows a combination of luxury with practicality to offer a business center highly functional, television flat screens, high speed Wi Fi and a good selection of wines and liquors, children lounges between other comforts.

Delta Airlines started flights between Sao Paulo and Los Angeles
Delta started flights without scales between Guarulhos (Sao Paulo) and Los Angeles, USA three times a week.

BOLIVIA
Lab and AeroSur flight together
Civil Aeronautics General Direction approved the agreement between Aerosur and Lloyd Aéreo Boliviano to operate the flight Boeing 727-200 of LAB. The agreement establishes six months hire of duration with the possibility of extending the contract by other time similar to the navy that will carry out only national flights.

PERU
Ciudad Sagrada de Caral is declared a Human Cultural Heritage.
UNESCO declared Ciudad Sagrada de Caral as a Human Cultural Heritage during meeting number 33 of the World Heritage Meeting made in Sevilla, Spain. The meeting indicated that Ciudad Sagrada de Caral meets the integrity and authenticity principles in the monument conservation and that the management system implemented is suitable.

More than one destination has potential to turn into World Heritage
Peru has innumerable natural and archeological places with potential to turn into world heritage emphasizing Cañon del Colca in Arequipa, some churches from Ayacucho and the city of Cajamarca because of its cultural landscape that this represents. Also, Señor de Sipan and Huaca Rajada where the monarch from moche was placed and the Complejo Arqueológico El Brujo and Huaca del Sol y la Luna in Trujillo, among others.

Cusco will be fashion center in September
Cusco will be fashion center during the competition carrying out “Cusco always fashion” last week of September. This event is for the first time carried out and it intends to insert Cusco in the circuit of international fashion showing the best of the national designers’ young productions.

Taca Airlines started direct flights to Santo Domingo
Taca started direct flights between Lima and Santo Domingo with three times a week frequencies on Wednesday, on Friday and on Saturday.

Start Peru started daily flights to Ayacucho
Start Peru started daily flights to Ayacucho. Soon, the airline will join Ayacucho and Cusco with two weekly flights Lima – Ayacucho – Cusco. At the end of 2009, it is expected to finish with the fleet renewal also having Bae 146 airplanes.

PeruRail cancels operations on July 8th
PeruRail will cancel its operations on July 8th via Machupicchu and Puno as a precaution measure before the possibility of manifestations that could affect the travel experience of its passengers. PeruRail will give facilities to passengers that ask for them so they can plan again past or future days of July 8th, for passengers who can not travel in a different date, the price return of the bought tickets will be carried out.

COLOMBIA
Marriott will open its first hotel in August
The first, Hotel Marriott has scheduled its inauguration in August 15th. This will be placed in Bogotá Corporate Center in the west of the capital. On the other hand, JW Marriott is under construction in the north of the capital, this will be opened in May 2010.

Avianca y Mexicana de Aviación with shared codes
Avianca y Mexicana de Aviación renewed an agreement of shared code through this alliance, airlines “ offers to its passengers more options to arrive to key points of Colombia and Mexico also gives major facilities to its trips in its routes.

Aero Republica joins Cartagena with Caracas
Aero República inaugurated the route Cartagena-Caracas-Cartagena that started with three weekly direct frequencies. Besides that, the airline added its flights in the route Cartagena-San Andrés-Cartagena to one daily, at the same time it launched its fifth daily frequency between Bogotá and Cartagena.

MEXICO
Cruises are reactivated in Costa Maya
The operations in the terminal maritime Costa Maya, in Majahual were renewed since Wednesday and up to December 31st also 58 cruises arrive, this is already confirmed.

Aeroméxico will fly to New Orleans
Aeroméxico started its operations in the route Ciudad de México-New Orleans being this, the only international airline to fly in a direct way to this city. New flights will be operated by Aeroméxico Connect in ERJ-145 airplanes with 50 seats and it will have daily frequency, except for Saturdays.

HONDURAS
Taca adapts its flights schedule because of a curfew
Taca informed that it adapted its flights schedule to Honduras to accomplish the curfew of this country after the leaving by force of the president Manuel Zelaya. Also, due to the critical situation of Honduras, “penalty has been eliminated” by a date change in its flights to Tegucigalpa, San Pedro Sula, La Ceiba and Roatán.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
“Aerolíneas Argentinas” got second B737 Next Generation

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
“Aerolíneas Argentinas” got second B737 Next Generation
“Aerolíneas Argentinas” got its second 737/700 Boeing directly acquired from Boeing under the investment plan context targeted to strengthen their services.

URUGUAY
“Punta del Este” stands out in the nautical cities circuit
Marbella and Punta del Este promote the creation of a nautical circuit that brings together 10 of the principal world tourist destinations which are characterized by having an intense water sport activity. Municipal authorities from Uruguay included the ten top cities of the world, as to tourist destination and as nautical tourism destination, in the international circuit. Besides these cities, they proposed to include Miami. Likewise, Dubai would be on the list. Later on, a city from China, Greece, Italy, France and Germany, having these characteristics will be added.

BRAZIL
Sighting of right whales in Santa Catarina
In the Right Whales Environmental Protection Area at Praia do Rosa (Santa Catarina), everything is ready to receive visitors since July 19, when the 2009 Whale Observation Season starts. The municipal government, businessmen, hotel owners and the whole local community are again confident that tourists will choose them to practice this kind of sustainable tourism that is growing year by year and that, besides promoting local Economy, helps to create environmental awareness among visitors.

Gol plans to fly to the Caribbean
Gol is studying the possibility of starting flights to the Caribbean and is therefore waiting for the respective authorizations to fly to Aruba and Dominican Republic, what represents an important change in their South America routes net. Recently, they suspended their flights between Santiago and Lima; in June flights between Sao Paulo and Bogotá changed from daily and direct to four weekly frequencies with scale in Manaos. As to flights between Sao Paulo and Santiago, the airline reduced their seven weekly flights offer to two on Saturdays and Sundays, but keeping their daily frequencies with scale in Buenos Aires.

BOLIVIA
BOA increases operations
“Boliviana de Aviación” started a new route to the department of Tarija, 860 Km to the South from La Paz. With this one, four destinations are attended by the company, also operating between the capital, Cochabamba and Santa Cruz.

PERU
Titicaca and Amazonas are shaping up as finalists of the New World Wonder Contest
Titicaca Lake and Amazonas River are in the first places of their respective groups, according to the last ranking published by New Seven Wonders foundation. Titicaca continues on top of Group F (rivers, lakes and waterfalls category), same as Amazonas in group E (forests, national parks, and natural reserves). Likewise, Colca Canyon keeps the second place in group D, referring to caves, rocks formations and valleys.

Soon, the Desert and Southern Sea Museum will be opened in Tacna
The Desert and Southern Sea Museum, located in Km 92 of Tacna seaboard road, will soon be opened for tourism exhibiting important archaeological collections, historical documents, biological species, geological samples, as well as natural and tourism resources of Tacna and the whole country.

Lan Peru started daily flights to Madrid
Since June 23, LAN Peru increased frequencies from Lima to Madrid to operate seven weekly flights. Furthermore, from the capital of Spain, connections with other European cities such as Paris, Rome and Frankfurt will be available with LAN Airlines Flights.

ECUADOR
Tourism excessively grows in Galapagos
Arrival of tourists in Galapagos, located at 1,000 km from continental Ecuador coast, has increased since 1979 when 11,765 tourists: 9,539 foreigners and 2,226 domestic arrived to the archipelago. In 2008, 173,420 persons: 119,952 foreigners and 53,468 Ecuadorians arrived. That is, tourists’ arrival increased 1,472% in three decades.

COLOMBIA
Escobar Ranch will have a hotel
Napoles Ranch, belonging to Pablo Escobar has foreseen for 2011, to open a hotel on-site. Likewise, they will make use of the 1.280 m landing field – same which Escobar used to export cocaine – so that lots of foreign tourists arrive by airway.

VENEZUELA
SBA Airlines postpones flight to Panama
For operative, commercial and technical type reasons, the first flight of SBA Airlines was postponed for August 1st. Due to the high demand of travelers to Panama and within a growth plan, the airline will open a route Panama-Caracas-Panama in a 757 Boeing with capacity for 178 passengers. There will be two daily frequencies, excepting on Saturdays with only one flight.

PANAMA
Interactive map for whales sighting is being prepared
Panama National Geographical Institute is making the first interactive map for whales sighting in Latin America. The purpose is to order investigations and contribute to preserve these mammals. This digital plan will be broadcasted through an internet portal so that everyone traveling to Panama may be able to know where and when the humpback whales, the most abundant among those visiting the central American country, may be made out.

MEXICO
Guidebook of small hotels at Maya Riviera is published.
The Maya Riviera Small Hotels Guide book includes a short description of 92 accommodation centers at Playa del Carmen, Akumal and Tulum, as well as its location and contacts data. The guide book was made out of recycled paper, as well as the other leaflets designed by Maya Riviera Promotion Trusteeship. With simple format, the leaflet permits to quickly see small hotels offers. Though its content is short, it includes the basic characteristics to correctly choose the accommodation center that complies with the tourist requirements and expectations. The guide book, in Spanish and English, is a tool that will be used in fairs, tourist caravans and expositions as the Tourist bulletin and Mexico Magic Trade Show, event where small hotels directly present the tourist offer of Maya Riviera.

There will be a new airport in Palenque
Before ending the third quarter of the year, Airports and auxiliary Services and the Government of Chiapas will start building a new Airport in Palenque, which will substitute the airfield which is practically abandoned: In 2008 only 2011 passengers were transported. The new terminal will be in conditions to receive 767 Boeing and 330 Airbus airplanes.

CUBA
Sol Melia receives two recognitions for environmental stewardship
Paradisus Río de Oro Hotel, a five stars resort with 300 rooms that Group Sol Meliá has in Cuba, received two recognitions for their work on environmental stewardship. The hotel got the ‘Travelife Silver’ qualification award, bestowed upon them by TUI tour operator in the United Kingdom and Ireland; and the Environment Provincial Award of Cuba Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment (CITMA for its abbreviation in Spanish).

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Aerolíneas Argentinas will connect Trelew and Sao Paulo

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Aerolíneas Argentinas will connect Trelew and Sao Paulo
According to an agreement signed by the governor of Chubut, the secretary of Transportation and Aerolineas Argentinas’ general manager, the company will fly between Sao Paulo, Brazil and Trelew.

New investment made by Accor in Buenos Aires
Accor Hospitality will invest US$ 100 million in the construction of a Novotel and an Ibis in an area located in 1334 Corrientes Avenue. The Novotel will have 127 rooms, spa, convention areas and an “ecological wall “ with 21 different types of plants. The Ibis Obelisco will have 168 rooms and will be the third three-star hotel of the chain in the country.

Good quantity of reserves and not too much snow in Mendoza.
The Las Leñas complex, which had projected to open its doors on Saturday June 13th, has postponed it for a few days. The ski resorts are analyzing delaying the start of the season due to the absence of snow in the peaks of the province. Despite this fact, the provincial government estimated that this will be a good season.

URUGUAY
More LAN flights from Montevideo
Starting July 5th, LAN will increase its flights to 13 weekly frequencies to Santiago de Chile with a new flight on Saturdays, doubling the amount of flights in Uruguay from Monday to Saturday with A318 and A320. The company will also continue with its Sunday flight with the Boeing 767-300ER.

BRAZIL
The Gay Pride Parade received 400 thousand tourists in Sao Paulo
The 13th Edition of the LGBT Pride Parade in Sao Paulo, which was done on Sunday, received 400 thousand tourists, similar amount compared with the 2008 edition. This tourist movement generates close to R$ 190 million to the city’s economy.

Salvador will have “Ómnibus del Forró” free this month
Bahiatursa and the Bahia Tourism Secretary, in Alliance with Salvador Bus, offers this month (from the 10th to the 13th, from the 19th to the 24th and from the 26th to the 28th) the Omnibus del Forro Bus in order for the tourists to enjoy the programming of Sao Joao da Bahia, in the Pelourinho, in the Bahian Capital. The service is free with typical activities inside the bus, as well as live music. The buses leave at 7:00pm from the Stella Maris Resort , in the Stella Maris Beach, and from the Pestana Bahia Hotel, located in Rio Vermelho. The return is at midnight from the Main Square.

CHILE
The Darwin Circuit in Magallanes, new Heritage route.
Commemorating 200 years of Charles Darwin’s Barth, a new heritage guide will be launched in order to promote with the tourists all the sites visited by the British naturalist in the XIX Century. The route includes all sites visited by Darwin in his journey throughout the country. These sites include the cities of Parihuano, in the IV Region, La Campana in the V Region, Chiloe in the X Region and Puerto del Hambre, Fuerte Bulnes and Navarino Island, located in the XII Region of Magallanes and in the Chilean Antartica.

The Atton Hotel has expansion plans for Peru and Colombia
The construction of a new 280-room Atton Hotel will start in two months in Lima Peru. The company is also evaluating the construction of a hotel in Bogota and in other Latin American capitals. The decision is to define the second project outside of Chile before the end of the year.

BOLIVIA
Sixth in the World ranking for high quantity of species of birds..
Bolivia has the sixth place in the World among the countries with the highest quantity of species of birds, having estimated the existence of more than 1,414 different types of birds in its territory, which means 60 % of all species in South America.

Aymara New Year at Tiwanaku
Bolivia celebrates the winter solstice by receiving the Aymara New Year, one of the celebrations with more tradition in the Andean Region. Every year, on June 21st, Tiwanaku celebrates the Holiday with the visit of thousands of tourists who come from inside and outside the country. The main event of the celebration starts when the first rays of the sun during June 21st pass through the Puerta del Sol, signaling the beginning of a new Andean Year. The year 5517 will be celebrated this year.

PERU
Inaugurates Aymara tourist route
Puno has a new tourist route that tries to become one of the most important routes in the zone. The main attraction of this route is the Titicaca Lake. The route includes a visit to the towns of Acora, Chucuito and Plateria, among others, moving towards the border with Bolívia. This will be a new alternative to the Quechua route that tourists use to visit the islands of Taquile and the Uros from the port located in the lake.

The first phase of construction of the Westin Libertador Lima is finished.
The first phase of construction of the Westin Libertador Lima was finished with the roof of the last floor of the main tower. The works will concentrate now on the placement of the curtain wall and on the finishing touches. Up to today, US$68 million was needed for its construction, being the total investment US$100 million. The end of the construction will be August, 2010, when there will be a soft opening, being inaugurated officially in November.

Less seats to Lima from Miami
American Airlines has 79 seats less in its daily flights between Lima and Miami, due to the change of one of its A300 that was used up to today, for a Boeing 757. There will be another 72 seats less in August as a result of the second change of the A300 for a Boeing 767, which will operate the evening flights.

COLOMBIA
A bus is transformed into a Mobile museum in Medellin
A bus in the city of Medellin was transformed into a mobile museum about the history of transport. The bus has pictures, parts of aircrafts, ship compasses, a 70 year old flight simulator and one of the famous black boxes.

MEXICO
Cruises arrive to Progreso
After 42 days of suspending the arrival of cruises to the Progreso port, the Carnival Shipping company resumed its operations to this point of the Yucatan coast with the arrival of the Holiday, which brought 1,786 visitors from the United States. The segment of the cruises industry works again with the arrival of this cruise, and there are new expectations that Carnival will increase its frequencies to Yucatan by including this destiny on its routes.

Quintana Roo would reduce hotel tariffs in order to attract tourism
The hotel sector of the south of Quintana Roo will reduce its hotel tariffs in order to attract tourism. The objective is to sacrifice earnings at a first stage, in exchange of promoting destinies with the visits that will be received and show that the Southern area of Quintana Roo is well prepared.

The Riu Group opened its US $ 115 million hotel in Mazatlan
The Government of the State of Sinaloa announced that the Riu Group opened its US $ 115 million in the resort of Mazatlan in the Mexican Pacific area. The investment of the company from Mallorca in the Riu Resort Hotel Emerald Bay has been “the biggest in the last years of tourism development in the area”. The hotel has 716 rooms and its opening reached 80 percent occupancy.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Hotel for business executives opened

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Hotel for business executives opened
The first hotel in Argentina focused exclusively on executives was inaugurated. The amount of money invested to build this hotel was US$10 million. This new project will try to capture an important portion of the market of businessmen who travel to the country.

BRAZIL
IHG expands its brands Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express
Intercontinental Hotels Group -IHG- signed an agreement for four new Holiday Inn Express Hotels and for the transformation of an independent Holiday Inn in Brazil, increasing its presence in the country to 12 cities. The new Holiday Inn Express hotels, which will be located in Belem, Cuiaba, Maceio and Manaus, will start operations in 2011. The Holiday Inn Sao Luiz would open at the end of this year.

BOLIVIA
BoA will fly to Tarija Tarija
Boliviana de Aviación will begin commercial operations to the city of Tarija in late June. There will be four round trip flights per week in the route Tarija-Cochabamba, with immediate connections to La Paz and Santa Cruz, in addition to one direct frequency between Tarija and La Paz.

Sky Airlines started flights
Sky Airline started operations in the route La Paz-Arica-Antofagasta and Santiago three times per week with Boeing 737-200 airplanes, with the intention to expand its national and international operations.

PERU
Titicaca is still the favorite in the Seven Natural Wonders of the World contest
The Lake Titicaca continues in first place of the F Group of the contest that will select the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, surpassing competitors like the Niagara Falls and the Danube River. Meanwhile, the Amazon remains in second place of the E Group, surpassed by the National Park of Rio Subterraneo, located in Puerto Princesa in Philippines.

Puno’s Tourist routes have new sign posts now
Nine tourist routes of the Puno Region have new sign posts that will enable the national and foreign visitors to obtain information about their characteristics, altitude, among other information. The tourist routes with new sign posts are Masocruz, Chaka Ckaka, La Raya, Lagunillas, Titiri , Macusani, Tilaly, Sandia and the city of Puno.

Emblematic Ayllu Cafe left local
The Ayllu, a cafe considered by the people of the city of Cusco as part of their identity, left definitely the local that had in the Main Square for approximately 40 years.

The first Afro Peruvian Culture Museum is inaugurated
The first National Museum of Afro Peruvian Culture, located in the city of Lima, was inaugurated last week. The main objective is to pay tribute to the work done by the Afro Peruvians in the identity and in the Peruvian culture. Photographs, musical instruments as well as typical dresses and art works of Peruvians of black race can be seen in this Museum.

COLOMBIA
AeroRepublica increased number of flights.
AeroRepublica will have more flights departing from Bogotá to Santa Marta, San Andrés, Leticia, Cartagena and Panamá during June, July and August. During the same period, the airline will expand its flights on the routes from Bucaramanga and Cartagena to Panama and San Andres; from Cali, Medellin, Barranquilla and Cartagena.

MEXICO
Quintana Roo, 12 of the 40 hotels closed reopen
At least 12 of the 40 hotels that closed their doors in Quintana Roo due to the fall in tourism as a result of the sanitary emergency brought about by the H1N1 flu, reopened. Eight of the hotels that opened again are located in the Maya Riviera and the other four are located in Cancun.

Ocean By H10 Hotels with new corporate website
The Ocean by H10 hotel chain, that has three resorts in the Caribbean, launched its new corporate website where the search process has been simplified. A clear example is the search word “Experiences” where the type of vacations can be selected: Romantic, Business, Spa; Sports or Family. After that, Ocean By H10 presents a list of services, packs and offers that go according to the selection made. A survey manager has also been included enabling Ocean By H10 to know the clients’ experience and, in this way, improve or strengthen certain services.

RIU opened its first hotel in Mazatlan
The RIU Emerald Bay, the first hotel of the Spanish company opened its doors in Mazatlan, becoming in the resort number 15 that RIU has in this country, and the 30th hotel that the chain has in America. The resort is located in first line in the sea and offers the 24-hour All Inclusive by RIU Service. It has 716 rooms, 4 restaurants, 5 bars, 2 swimming pools and 3 meeting rooms.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
LAN with a new frequency between Mendoza and Santiago

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
LAN with a new frequency between Mendoza and Santiago
Beginning from July 1st, LAN will add one new daily frequency between Mendoza and Santiago, the current route it flies with two daily frequencies.

GOL will directly fly to Fortaleza
GOL will resume the direct flights between Buenos Aires and Fortaleza beginning from December. The agreement will last one year.

Boutique hotels propose tourist routes
The establishments meeting in TheBBH, the first Argentine club of boutique hotels, will present a series of tourist circuits in the country. The Boutique Routes, which will be proposed by TheBBH at the beginning and join the gastronomic offer and the comfort of the boutique hotels, are Patagonia Boutique, Mesopotamia Boutique, Centro Boutique, Noroeste Boutique and Buenos Aires Boutique.

BRAZIL
Six monuments compete in vote of 7 Wonders Lusas
Brazil, with six monuments, is competing in vote of the 7 Wonders of Portuguese Origin in the World and it has presented the candidatures of the San Francisco de Asís Church of Penitence, the Sanctuary of Jesus of Matozinho, both are in Minas Gerais; the Monastery of Sao Bento and the Convent of San Francisco, in Rio de Janeiro; el Fuerte del Principe da Beira, in Rondonia and the Monastery of Sao Bento of Olinda. The list of the participants includes in total 27 monuments belonging to 16 countries.

US Airways with a new service to Rio de Janeiro
US Airways will operate direct daily flights between its hub in Douglas International airport of Charlotte, NC, and Rio de Janeiro. On December 2nd, the new service will start with a B767 with capacity for 18 passengers in Business class and 186 in Economic class.

PERU
Lake Titicaca continues leading a group F of competition of the New Wonders
Lake Titicaca continues leading the group F of competition that will choose the seven Natural Wonder of the world, meanwhile el Cañon del Colca raised one position in the last ranking of the foundation New7wonders and it places in the first place of the group D.

Sol & Luna hotel invests US$5 million in extension of its facilities
Sol & Luna Lodge-Spa, located in Urubamba valley, invested US$5 million in the extension of its facilities that will have 15 new luxury small houses, as well as one multipurpose hall with capacity for 150 people. The small houses will be directed to luxury segment and will be added to the 28 bungalows that this hotel currently has. All the houses will have more than 100m2 of the inner area, one private garden and terrace, and wonderful view to the surroundings of Valle Sagrado.

Guides of museums of Arequipa will be distributed between tourists
Arequipa will have a guide of museums that will show to the tourists what offers, more than 16 galleries of Historic Center.The document will include photographs and thematic information about the offer of each one of the museums in order that tourists could have the option to choose which one they are going to visit during their stay. The guide will be full color and in Spanish and English, and it will be distributed in travel agencies, hotels, airport and terminus with no cost.

They will evaluate the possibility to build mythological museum in Puno
Puno would have a Mythological museum similar to those that exist in Paraguay and Spain, where trace and ornaments, related to the culture of this region of the country, will be exhibited, it informed that the museum would be located on the shore of Lake Titicaca.

ECUADOR
Iberia adds direct flight to Guayaquil
From June 12th to 26th, Iberia will increase the offer of flights to Guayaquil in order to attend the increase of the demand that is registered at the beginning of the summer in the northern hemisphere. Iberia adds the second flight to the current frequency in the route Quito –Guayaquil, which will operate every Tuesday, Friday and Saturday and will directly connect with Guayaquil.

COLOMBIA
Santa Marta will continue being among plans of cruisers
Royal Caribbean announced that Santa Marta will continue being included within different schedules in the calendar of “Enchantment of the Seas” for 2009-2010 seasons. For 2010-2011season, Santa Marta will be held to the verification of some advances related to the agreements acquired by the municipality and the company of cruisers.

SBA will arrive to Panama
From July 1st, SBA Airlines will arrive to Panama operating the route Panama-Caracas-Panama in a Boeing 757 with capacity for 178 passengers.

PANAMA
Fenn chain will open a hotel in the country
In November, after one year of the opening of its first establishment in Asuncion (Paraguay), the Argentine hotel chain will inaugurate el Esplendor Denovo Panama, in the capital city of the country. The hotel will be of 42 floors and have 100 rooms and its building will demand an investment of US$ 30 million.

MEXICO
Cozumel begins tourist recovery
The tourist Cozumel companies prepare themselves for the return of the ships for this Wednesday, while the hotel activity already went up to 41%. The recovery of the hotel sector has been marked because it went from 19% to 41% that was reported this Saturday; which means that the level of the activity was duplicated around a week and half.

Sol Melia recovers normality
After its services in two of its hotels in Mexico, the ME Cancun and Melia Cozumel, have been temporarily interrupted, Sol Melia will open its establishment in Cancun and will do the same with that of the island, on June 13th.

The health insurance will be free for foreign tourists
The Federal Government will give foreign tourists, who turn to DF a free health insurance, especially against illnesses caused by virus. The insurance that will protect visitors against the virus of influenza AH1N1 and, moreover, it will give other 10 benefits, it will be obtained in the hotel where the tourists will be lodged.

CUBA
Melia Las Dunas receives distinction Marque of Excellence
The important British tour operator Thomas Cook reworded Melina Las Dunas hotel with its 2008 Marque of Excellence Award. This reward expresses the recognition of Tomas Cook clients for the high standards of service and the quality of the hotel lodging.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
As of lat Friday, May 1, Aerolineas Argentinas began its two weekly frequencies from Almirante Zar Airport of Trelew to the city of Esquel.

LAN will have more flights to Cordoba

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
As of lat Friday, May 1, Aerolineas Argentinas began its two weekly frequencies from Almirante Zar Airport of Trelew to the city of Esquel.

LAN will have more flights to Cordoba
LAN announced that it will add three new weekly frequencies to its Cordoba-Santiago route beginning from June 1st. With the arrival of these new frequencies, the airline will increase its offer to a total of fourteen flights.

Pluna seeks to have flights to Comodoro Rivadavia
Pluna would include the city of Comodoro Rivadavia into the airline route network. On May 27th, Pluna planed to begin flights that join Trelew (Chubut) to Montevideo and Sao Paulo.

BRAZIL
Alitalia would take up again its Roma-Rio route
Between this and the next year, Alitalia would take up again the route between Roma and Rio de Janeiro. The renewed airline is immersed in a plan of fleet extension, with which it searches to add some 70 planes to 148 that it currently has.

Delta Air Lines changes beginning of its flights to Los Angeles to June 30th
Delta Air Lines, that had required an authorization of DOT in order to fly between Sao Paulo and Los Angeles from May 22st, will begin to operate the flight on July 1st, due to high season in this date.

CHILE
A new tourist product for wine lovers
Vinobus (Wine bus) is the new full day program of Enotour & Culinary Travel, the company of tourism specialized in enogastronomic tours to several wine-growing regions of Chile and of the Southern Cone. Vinobus (Wine bus) begins its route in Santiago where tourists will learn about the relationship between wine and the city and then to visit zone of Maipo Alto and Viña Perez Cruz where a visitor is a participant of a privet technical circuit and will taste some of the best premium wines. The journey also includes Viña Santa Rita, Andino museum and a gourmet lunch.

Blue Tree in Santiago and Patagonia
Blue Tree Hotels incorporate in its chain two new hotels in Chile. On May, the chain passes to administrate the Santiago Fundador hotel, the establishment is dedicated to a corporate market and it is located in Paris-Londres district. The other hotel, Remota, is located in the region of Patagonia, in the city of Puerto Natales, near to the most famous park of Chile, Torres del Paine. The Remota Hotel explores the concept of home feeling and it raises the characteristics and the value of architecture of the region.

Puerto Vargas with a new tourist circuit
Puerto Vargas will open a new alternative of tourism: a heritage tourist circuit that travels through 33 places of interest including: Plaza de Armas, the square of Jose Luis Martinez, heritage houses, the church of Sagrado Corazon de Jesus, The Lutheran church among others places of interest finishing in heritage house, currently occupied by Chile Investigations,

PERU
Arequipa will be included in tour of cruisers
Due to its colonial architecture, religious tourism, countryside and gastronomy, the city of Arequipa will be considered in a tour of cruisers that arrive to Peru. The cruisers will disembark in Matarani port and from there tourists will be transferred to the city, where they will stay for one day. During this time, the visitors could do religious tourism, to visit countryside, to taste food and to return to the cruiser in order to continue their travel in the afternoon hours.

Machu Picchu Sanctuary Lodge reaches International Quality Certification
Machu Picchu Sanctuary Loge became the first hotel of Cusco and the second nationwide hotel in getting the SQF 2000 Certification in Level 3; the highest in its field. SQF or Save Quality Food is developed by Food Marketing Institute of America and consists of an analysis of dangers and critical points of control for suppliers of whole nutritious chain; from a farm to a table.

It is planned to build thematic restaurant in Lambayeque
A group of national businessmen has shown interests in constructing thematic restaurants in different localities of administrative district of Lambayeque, which will generate competition in order to show and offer a better service than traditional local and district restaurants. In these denominated “thematic restaurants” they plan to offer to visitors a cultural code with typical dances and gastronomy of the region.

ECUADOR
Hotels will adapt Skype phone system
The Vox Skype company presented to the hotel businessmen a solution to put down the price of phone calls. The application is named as Vosky Exchange and it consists of an internet phone call, where the voice is digitalizing, compressing and sending in packages of IP information. To make use of it the companies don’t need to renew their central telephony, even when it has 15 years of functioning. Skype notices that guests and their families are the first to be benefit.

COLOMBIA
Sonesta opens its first hotel in the country
The first Sonesta hotel in Colombia, it is located in Valledupar (Cesar), it will open its door on May 4st. The hotel had an investment close to $10 million; it has an area of 6.500 m2, 108 rooms, three VIP halls, restaurant, gym, swimming pull, Jacuzzi and one auditorium with capacity for 300 people.

MEXICO
Aeromexico increase routes
Aeromexico will increase routes in the domestic and international market, before a growing demand of corporate market. Aeromexico will fly from Mexico City to Tuxtla Gutierrez, Chetumal, Hautulco, Cozumel, Colima, Tepic and Lazaro Cardenas with an Embrear 145 for 50 passengers. The new nine international routes to America will be Guadalajara-San Jose (California), Los Cabos – San Francisco, the City of Mexico – New Orleans, Puerto Vallarta – San Diego. In South America, it will have one daily flight between Cancun and Buenos Aires, Argentina, and another flight will be the city of Mexico – Medellin, Colombia.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Tourist bus will start from May 2nd in Buenos Aires
The buses which will travel through Buenos Aires´ tourist places will begin to function on May 2nd with the $25 per day price.

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Tourist bus will start from May 2nd in Buenos Aires
The buses which will travel through Buenos Aires´ tourist places will begin to function on May 2nd with the $25 per day price.

Boutique hotels arrive to Bariloche
Los Juncos Patagonian Lake House is the first hotel, a member of TheBBH, in the city of Bariloche, it is an old southern large house for enjoyment just for 12 guests and it is located 20 kilometers from the San Carlos of Bariloche center, just 4 kilometers from Villa Llao Llao. Out of traditional catering, it offers a different experience to its guests with gourmet home cooking and selection of wines from small Argentinean winery.

Hotel La Cantera is an option of accommodation in missionary jungle
From August, Iguazu will count on a new option of accommodation. In its first stage, The Hotel La Cantera will have 24 rooms, which are divided into 3 modules of 8 rooms each one, and will be located only 15 minutes from airport, waterfalls and the city of Iguazu

BRAZIL
TAM with 34 new flights to seven capitals of the country.
This month, TAM will begin to operate 34 new flights from the Rio de Janeiro´s Santos Dumont Airport to seven capitals of the country: Aracajú, Belo Horizonte (Confins), Brasilia, Curitiba, Recife, Salvador and Vitoria. These 17 flights join with 31 regular flights of airlift between Rio and Sao Paulo.

TAM requested approval of code sharing agreement with Swiss
National Civil Aviation Agency of Brazil received the request, from TAM and Swiss, of approval of a code sharing agreement between both airlines. TAM recently announced similar agreements with Air China and Bmi.

PERU
Colombian theme park arrives
The manager of the company confirmed that Divercity, in alliance with Peruvian partners, will invest US$10 million in order to open its local in Lima on December of this year.
New artificial wharf will facilitate an access to Guañape islands in La Libertad
On September of this year will be initiated the construction of an artificial wharf in Morin port, province of Viru (La Libertad), this will allow tourists to get to Guañape islands, the one of the main nature reserves in the zone, in less time. The wharf will improve the condition of the tourist services by increasing security and control of boats that travel to islands, in one hour and half journey at sea.

Star Peru begins flights to Ayacucho
From July 2nd, Star Peru will begin operations to the city of Ayacucho with three weekly frequencies on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. The flights will be direct and will depart in the morning.

ECUADOR
Entry of tourists to Galapagos Islands decreased
The management of the Galapagos National Park registered the entry of 41,146 people that arrived to the archipelago between January and March of this year, 35, 41 of whom visited the protected area. With such facts as a base, a 7.5% decrease was determined in relation to the same period of 2008.

Five tourist routes in province of Azuay were presented
The Ministry of Tourism presented five tourist routes corresponding to the province of Azuay. The Archeological, Gastronomic, Extreme Sports, Handicraft Routes and the Aviturism Route will be a different alternative for visitors who can enjoy gastronomy, handicraft and extreme sports.

Place of Tourist Information in Manabi is inaugurated
The Ministry of Tourism inaugurated a Place of Tourist Information, i-Tur, in “Ciudad Alfaro” Civic Center, in order to offer his visitors ample information of tourist destinies that have the province of Manabi and especially Montecristi.

COLOMBIA
Emirates maintain its interest in flying to Bogota
Emirates Ailines will begin to operate the Dubai-Bogota route at the end of this year or in 2010.
On May, it will begin the negotiations with the Direction of Civic Aviation and the idea is that the company could cover the route between Dubai, Caracas and Bogota. The company has been thinking of beginning the route for cargo transport and analyzing the future transfer of passengers.

MEXICO
MexicanaLink opens a new flight to Merida
MexicanaLink began operations in Yucatan with a new airlift that will make a connection with the cities of Merida, Villahermosa, Veracruz, and Guadalajara. MexicanaLink has a fleet of three Bombardier CRJ 200 airplanes with capacity for 50 passengers. It will gradually add aircrafts up to 13, with which it will be able to transport more than 800 thousand passengers.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
New tourist projects in Punta Cana
It has been projecting a construction of eight new hotel establishments in Punta Cana Bavaro, thirteen projects of tourist property development, eleven new golf fields, one water park and two commercial centers, informed The East Zone Hotels and Tourism Projects Association, with tourist destination. El Bahia Principe Esmeralda initiated construction works, Westin Roco Ki is in advance and The Catalina Royal is an extension. The others establishments are: the Venezian Bavaro, of 550 rooms, the Marlyn with 204 rooms, Bahia Principe Romana, Tropicalia in Miches and the Elliot Miches Beach Resort. It is hoped that after five years, the hotels will be built and commercialized.

CUBA
SOL MELIA Renewed Solmaliacuba.com
Sol Melia Cuba renewed the corporate image of its Web site and added new functional qualities in order to approach the clients and to increasingly orient them to make a purchase. From the main page it is possible now to access to the last news, to subscribe to the newsletter offers, to know which hotels are the most visited by the internet users and to search for accommodation according to travel interests. In addition, it is accessed to the new Sol Melia Cuba Map section in order to locate on interactive maps 24 hotels and resorts, which the company promotes on the biggest island of the West Indies.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Tourist buses will travel through Buenos Aires

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Tourist buses will travel through Buenos Aires
Specially prepared convertible units with capacity for 50 passengers each one, specialized tourist guides and informative material will travel through Buenos Aires and for the first time will officially develop the Tourist Bus circuit, exactly as it happens in the great cities of the world. The service will be done in regular form by means of a predetermined schedule of departures and the circuit will take no more than three hours. The passenger will be able to use the service, getting on and off the bus as many times as they wish at any of the authorized bus stops during the term of force of the ticket. www.buenosairesbus.com

LAN began flights to Tucuman
LAN Argentina began to fly to San Miguel of Tucuman with an Airbus A320 with capacity for 150 passengers and two daily flights. In this way, Tucuman is added to the group of Argentinian cities to which an airline is flying.

South Africa Airways began direct flights to Johannesburg
South African Airways´ direct flights began between Buenos Aires and Johannesburg, South Africa, with an Airbus A 340-200, two times per week. The airline expects to add one more frequency in July and for the next year the flights will be daily.

URUGUAY
Pluna will fly to Trelew two times per week
Pluna will begin its operations to the airport of Trelew with two weekly flights from Sao Paulo via Montevideo.

Pluna increases frequencies between Montevideo and Sao Paulo
From June 21th, Pluna will fly three days per week between Montevideo and Sao Paulo. The company will offer services in the morning, in the afternoon and at night, on Thursdays, Fridays and on Sundays. www.flypluna.com

BRAZIL
Christ the Redeemer will be modernized
The modernization work of the Christ the Redeemer will cost about US$500.000 and would be finished in four months. It includes the modernization of the electric discharge system, waterproofing of the base of the statue and recovery or substitution of compromised pieces of the granite floor and of the handrails..

TAM will fly seven times per week to South Africa
TAM will fly to South Africa with seven weekly frequencies. In the second semester of the year it will begin to fly to Johannesburg and it is already negotiating a code sharing agreement with South African Airways. It indicated that its request to fly to Portugal was approved, the country to which TAM currently flies in code sharing agreement with TAP.

It will join Rio de Janeiro and Santiago
TAM will begin daily flights between Rio de Janeiro and Santiago, Chile, in May 15th. The flight will stop in Sao Paulo and then will directly continue to Santiago. The operation will be fulfilled with airplanes A320 configured with 156 seats, 12 of which are of Executive Class.

Delta Air Lines will inaugurate three weekly flights between Sao Paulo and Los Angeles
On May 21st, Delta will inaugurate three weekly flights between San Pablo and Los Angeles. The airline will start a flight operated by Northwest from Los Angeles to Las Vegas that will directly connect to the flight from San Pablo. Delta plans to operate direct flights from Atlanta to Brasilia from December 17th of this current year.

CHILE
Starwood will open Hotel W in Santiago on July1st
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide informed that the first hotel of its South American W brand will open its door in Santiago on July1st. The opening was originally prevented to be during the course of this month.

BOLIVIA
AeroSur received the IATA´s IOSA Certification

IATA gave the IOSA Certification to AeroSur, after the airline satisfactorily approved the certification audit based on the highest standards of quality and operational security at the international level.

PERU
Machu Picchu among the 20 best views in the world
The online Yahoo search engine, through its section Yahoo Travel, published the ranking of 20 best views in the world. The review, elaborated by recognized travel writer, Andrew Harper, puts Machu Picchu on the 9th place of the list.

Conde Nast Traveler highlights two Peruvian hotels in the Hot List 2009
In the 13th Hot List ´s version of Conde Nast Traveler , two of ten South American hotels, which are highlighted among the new 140 hotels and resorts that transcend the industry standards, is presented by tow Peruvian excellent establishments: Las casitas de Colca in Arequipa and La Casona Inkaterra in Cusco. The Hot List 2009 will be distributed with the May edition of the magazine. www.concierge.com

Star Peru will fly to Talara
From Friday May 19th, Star Peru will begin its operations to Talara via Cajamarca with three weekly frequencies: on Tuesdays, Thursdays and on Sundays. The flights will depart from Lima in the afternoon and stop in Cajamarca in order to continue to Talara and vice versa.

VENEZUELA
Santa Barbara will fly to Madrid and Tenerife
SBA, old Santa Barbara Airlines, will resume the route Madrid –Caracas-Madrid with five weekly flights the following Monday June 20th. The service will be operated with a Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft with 241 seats; with this, the offer ascends to 1,205 weekly and 4,820 monthly passengers. Likewise, SBA announced that it will have two weekly frequencies between Caracas y Tenerife.

Lufthansa offers First Class service from Caracas
Lufthansa is operating its Caracas- Frankfurt route with a modern A340-600, which offers the First Class service. The service, which is unique in its type of flights from South American country to Europe, offers 2 meters length seat-bed with computer connection, In-flight Entertainment with the last film premieres, exclusive menus and the best wines.

MEXICO
Mexico launches “Ruta del Tequila”
They launched The Ruta del Tequila, which includes the municipalities of El Arenal, Amatitan, Tequila, Magdalena and Teuchitan in its first stage. Aeromexico will have 6 weekly flights between New Orleans, Mexico City and Honduras The Aeromexico will launch six weekly nonstop flights between New Orleans and Mexico City on July 6th , with connection to San Pedro Sula, Honduras. The route represents the first new service of the international flights announced for New Orleans since hurricane Katrina and forms part of the Aeromexico´s energetic plans of expansion for North America.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
Breezes Puerto Plata Hotel will stop to operate with that branch from May 1st.
Breezes Puerto Plata Hotel will close its door and stop to operate under this branch, which is belonging to SuperClubs chain. The property will be called Sol de Plata Beach Resort & Spa. The guests who have done their reservations for a posterior date to the first of May, will be accommodated in other Puerto Plata´s own property, and also they will have the opportunity to do a reservation in other installation of the Breezes branch in the Caribbean or cancel their reservation, explained managers of SuperClubs in the country.

SOUTH AMERICA
Ten hotels are in the 2009 Hot List of Conde Nast Traveler
Conde Nast Traveler´s May edition includes the 13th annual Hot List prepared by famous magazine, which features 140 new hotels and resorts, 50 new restaurants, 35 new nightclubs and 50 new Spas whose design, service and amenities transcend industry standard. Among hotels and resorts highlighted by magazine, ten are South American: Argentina (5) , Brazil(1), Chile (1), Costa Rica (1), Peru (2).

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Aerolineas Agentinas and Sky Airline agreed to expand both of them in Chile and Peru

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Aerolineas Agentinas and Sky Airline agreed to expand both of them in Chile and Peru
Aerolineas Argentinas signed a commercial agreement with Sky Airline, which will allow it to expand its services to Chile destinations and the south of Peru destinations. Also, Aerolineas Argentinas through Sky will be able to offer destinations from Santiago to trans- Andean, such as Concepción, Temuco, Copiapó, Puerto Montt, Antofagasta, Calama, Iquique, Balmaceda, Arica, Punta Arenas and Arequipa in Peru. In addition, the project includes an admission to the e-ticket system, the combined achievement of promotional activities in common markets, technical and commercial cooperation.

Aerolineas Argentinas will increase its frequencies from and to Mar del Plata
Aerolineas Argentinas and Austral will increase their flight frequencies from and to Mar del Plata, going from the current nine flights to the fourteen weekly frequencies. From June 15th, five weekly flights will be added and will be part of gradual expansion plan of the Aerolineas Argentinas and Austral domestic services.

CHILE
Santiago Park Plaza first certified hotel
Santiago Park Plaza hotel is the only five star hotel in Chile that fulfills the requirements of the International Norm ISO 9001-2000. In this way, it was certified for hotel trade and gastronomy services by prestigious company Bureau Veritas Certification.

PERU
Cielos Andinos will open new Ayacucho-Cusco-Ayacucho route
Cielos Andinos will fly Ayacucho-Cusco-Ayacucho route with four weekly frequencies on Mondays, Tuesdays, Fridays and on Sundays. The flight will take one hour.

Rio Sagrado Villas & Spa Hotel opened its doors
Rio Sagrado Villas & Spa Hotel opened its doors in Urubamba, in Valle Sagrado, Cusco. It is located along the Urubamba River on land of 2.5. The new establishment has 21 rooms, all of them with terraces and private gardens, 2 small completely equipped towns and one restaurant as well as Spa with Jacuzzi and sauna.

ECUADOR
Implements Mariscal Sucre Tourist Route
Ecuador set in motion the “Mariscal Sucre Tourist Route” that comprised attractions, such as the Carondelet palace with the change of the presidential guard, the Historic City Center, the Casa de Sucre Museum, the Cathedral in order to visit Mausoleum of Sucre, la Cima de la Libertad, where the Pichincha battle was fought and then the Carmen Bajo, where Sucre’s remains were during 70 years before to be transferred to the Metropolitan Cathedral.

LAN began domestic flights
LAN Ecuador began its operations on the domestic market with seven domestic flights. Quito and Guayaquil are the first destinations covered by the company but, it will soon include other destinations such as the Galapagos Islands.

VENEZUELA
Santa Bárbara resume flights to Europa
From June, Santa Barbara Airlines will operate again to Madrid, Funchal and Tenerife. The frequencies will be five flights per week to Madrid, and two weekly flights to both Funchal and Tenerife.

MEXICO
Promotes Health Tourism
In May, the Secretaries of Tourism and Health of Mexico D.F. have planed to launch a Program for Health Tourism in Mexico City, which will allow them to witness plastic surgery, organ transplant and different kinds of operations more at low prices.

SOUTH AMERICA
Qatar Airways would arrive in 2010
Qatar Airways announced that one of its plans is to arrive to six American destinations and to South America in 2010. The company was in recent Arabia- South America forum, which was carried out in Doha, where companies of both regions got to join commercial bonds.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Buenos Aires- Sao Paulo LAN´s flight will be daily

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Buenos Aires- Sao Paulo LAN´s flight will be daily
From April 19th, LAN will have a new frequency between Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo. On Sundays, with the beginning of this flight, the offer is going to be daily between both cities.

URUGUAY
BQB will fly to Madrid
(BBQ) Buquebus requests to fly the Montevideo-Madrid route. BQB would operate a maximum of 7 weekly frequencies, with a plane capacity of 310 passengers and with a maximum of 10 tons of freight.

PARAGUAY
TAM will extend code sharing agreement with Pluna to fly to Asuncion
TAM and Pluna extended the code sharing agreement signed in November which included flights between Sao Paulo and Montevideo. At present, the agreement is valid to fly to Paraguay through the participation of TAM Airlines, with an office in Asunción. The agreement came into force from April 1st and it plans daily flights between Montevideo and Asuncion, operated by TAM and Pluna.

The exit tax raised
From April 1st, the value of the exit rate (XR) of ASU, raised from US$ 25.00 to US$ 31.00.

BRAZIL
TAM began code sharing agreement with Lufthansa
TAM and Lufthansa entered into the code sharing agreement. At the present time, the passengers coming from Europe with destination to Santiago will do a connection in Guarulhos (Sao Paulo) in order to continue with a TAM airplane. An agreement with Swiss is also in force in order that the passengers, traveling from Zurich, do the same connection. At the same time, from April, the TAM´s passengers will be able to buy flight tickets to Hanover, Stuttgart and Bremen with connection in Frankfurt, flying by Lufthansa inside Germany.

Taca will expand operations in its Rio-Lima route
Taca informed that it will expand the number of flights between Rio de Janeiro and Lima, Peru. One of its plans is that it should be daily. Currently, it has four weekly frequencies. Likewise, Taca indicated that they have talked to different operators in order to support the development of new packages, among which are packages to Guatemala, Belice, Honduras, Bolivia and Peru. The launch must happen at the end of this month or in the beginning of May.

GOL set the code sharing agreement with Air France-KLM
The Air France –KLM group singed an agreement of commercial cooperation with Gol. The agreement anticipates code sharing flights to destinations inside Brazil: Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, to Belen, Brasilia, Belo Horizonte, Campinhas, Curitiba, Florianopolis, Fortaleza, Foz do Iguazu, Manaus, Porto Alegre, Recife, Salvador and Victoria. Moreover, the customers of both airlines will have benefits of accumulated miles at traveling by any of two companies.

Air China will postpone beginning of Sao Paulo flights
Air China´s flights from Beijing to Sao Paulo, Madrid route, will begin on June 28th instead of beginning last Sunday, as it was anticipated at first.

PERU
The museum of Cao in Peru opened its door
The Museum of Cao was inaugurated in the Archeological Complex “El Brujo de Trujillo”. This museum will exhibit Madam of Cao, Moche leader, discovered in ceremonial place more than 1800 years of antiquity. The Museum is located near to the archeological complex “El Brujo”, which is one hour from the city of Trujillo, district of Magdalena of Cao.

Titicaca and Amazon lead competition of 7 Natural Wonders
Lake Titicaca and the Amazon River lead in their respective groups in the competition that will choose the 7 Natural Wonders of the world, according to the last ranking of the New 7 Wonders Foundation. The Titicaca candidacy , shared by Peru and Bolivia, was consolidated in the first place of the group F, whereas the Amazon that includes the largest river of the world and the Amazon jungle also reinforced its favoritism in the competition, recovering again the first place of the group E. While Colca canyon, located in Arequipa, reached the fourth box of the group D.

Backpacker service to Machu Picchu changes route
PeruRail reminded that the backpacker service changed its route and its new route is Estacion de Poroy-Machu Picchu-Poroy. In the first place, the change replies to the repeated order of the inhabitants of the comprised zones in Picchu Alto y Tica-Tica. The company indicated that in the last years, this zone called Zigzag was significantly urbanized and it is understandable that now the inhabitants ask for the train route change, thinking about their growing and calmness.

GHL will open four star hotels in Trujillo and Arequipa
The Colombian chain GHL, Sonesta hotels operator in the country, plans to open two more hotels in the country in the next two years. The new establishments, four star each one, will be located in the cities of Arequipa and Trujillo (La Libertad) and will be focused on a corporative sector.

Casa Andina will inaugurate hotel in Chincha in 2010
In April of 2010, Casa Andina will inaugurate its Private Collection Casa Andina hotel in Chincha, of four star, through the redesigning of the Casa Hacienda San Jose located in Chincha (Ica). The project that includes 11 suites among 80 rooms, a center of conventions with capacity of 600 people, 10 hectares of gardens, two bars, restaurant , spa & gym, two swimming pools, among other services.

ECUADOR
Galapagos Guayaquil with new bilingual guide
Markdigital launched the first bilingual magazine –guide with complete information about two important tourist destinations of the country, as Galapagos and Guayaquil. Galaquil 2009 tries to show to national and international tourists useful information about tourist attractions, services, maps, drawings gallery, photographs, classifieds, telephone cods, emergency numbers, tables of conversions and soon.

Will be construct international airport in Base de Manta
An international airport will work where currently Base de Manta is, after the North American troops leave the facilities in November. With a new terminal they try to turn Manta into the entrance of the Asian Basin toward Latin America and vice versa. For this purpose, they looked for Chinese airlines as strategic partners to take charge of the project management, due to this to assure the flow of flights to Manta.

LAN Ecuador officially began operations
LAN Ecuador began officially operating domestic flights from today, with seven frequencies from Monday to Tuesday, between Quito and Guayaquil. The US$29 one-way flight tickets will be promoted through its web site, as well for the Quito-Guayaquil route as for Guayaquil –Quito. In addition, people that accede to this discount by the purchase of one ticket will accumulate 25% of LANPASS kilometers.

COLOMBIA
Avianca increases flights for Easter
Avianca adds a total of 168 connections to national and international destinations of major request during Easter. In this way, from Friday 3th and Monday 13th of April, the passengers will have at their disposal about 20.000 additional seats.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Temporary closing of Viedma Airport

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Temporary closing of Viedma Airport
Until 14th of April the Gobernador Castello Viedna Airport will remain closed for all kind of operation because of maintenance works in the maneuvers area. Its operations will be transferred to the Bahía Blanca Airport.

LAN with self check-in service in Jorge Newbery Airpark of Buenos Aires
Using a new service of kiosks supplied by AA2000 located in Sector A, LAN set the self check-in service up in Airpark. LAN not only has a Web check-in service in Lan.com, but also the Kiosk allows the passengers to choose their seat, to print a boarding card and to save time by dispatching the luggage in an agile way.

TAP with new flights to Buenos Aires via TAM
The flights to Brasilia will also have connection to Buenos Aires in code shared with TAM, to offer three points of connection between Brazil and The Argentina´s capital.

FSA will construct four hotels
First South American Investment announced that four new hotels will be constructed in Argentina: in Buenos Aires, Mendoza and in the southern and northern locations of the country. Also, it added a project of the first class offices where US$ 15 million will be invested in a corporative hotel destined to cover the need of accommodation for the local companies’ employees.

Esplendor Savoy Rosario opened its door
The Fen Hotels chain invested US$4 millions in the redesign of the old Savoy Rosario hotel. The new establishment was reopened with the name of Esplendor Savoy Rosario and added to two last Fen Hotels inaugurations in Buenos Aires and the first hotel that was opened in Asunción, Paraguay.

Amerian opens new hotel
With a US$15 millions investment, Amerian chain opened a new hotel in San Luis’ suburbs. The establishment, higher than four stars, has 50 rooms. For 2010American has other two openings programmed in Neuquén and Rio Hondo (Santiago de Estero).

BOA carried out its first commercial flight
Yesterday, after having accomplished its permission to do commercial operations, Boliviana de Aviaciones carried out the first flight. The inaugural flight between La Paz, Cochabamba and Santa Cruz was done on Sunday and yesterday the commercial operations began with a fee lower in 10 percent than that determined as reference. In the next days the frequency will increase to three daily flights.

PERU
Peru will be promoted through Facebook, Youtube, Flickr and Twitter
Peru undertakes a new promotional strategy where its tourist attractions have presence on the main virtual social networks like Facebook, Youtube, Flickr and Twitter filling the vast information in the official site of tourist promotion for the exterior of PromPeru.

TACA began direct flights to Havana
TACA began its flights to Havana, Cuba, with three weekly flights. The passengers of Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay, alongside Peruvians will be benefited by this flight that is projected as one of the favorites in order to access to this tourist destination by excellence.

Andean Explorer and Hiram Bingham among 25 best trips in the world by train.
The International Railway Travelers society published a list considering the 25 best trips in the world by train. Peru is presented by the Andean Explorer and Hiram Bingham, the first one travels the route between Cusco and Puno and the second one travels the route between Cusco and Aguas Calientes (Machupicchu). In order to create this list, the organization was based on the experiences of writers, publishers, members and staff of the IRT.

Sonesta five stars hotel will be inaugurated
In July, the Colombian GHL chain will inaugurate the Sonesta Savoy five stars hotel located in La avenida el Sol, in Cusco. Last year the chain bought the Savoy Hotel through Joint Venture with the intention to convert it into a Sonesta category hotel and operate it. The chain invests more than US$ 4 million in the redesign of the hotel. Although the exterior of the building is maintained, inside everything is being modified.

ECUADOR
Ecuador is among the eight best educational destinations
Ecuador was chosen among the eight best educational destinations to be visited in the world. One of the characteristic that was considered in the evaluation was the fact that the country has four worlds (regions): Coast, Andes, Amazon and Galapagos, which allow an exotic exploration in a short time. The selection is made by Discovery Student Adventures within its new world program of educative trips.

Ícaro will fly from Manta to Galapagos
Ícaro will cover The Manta-Galapagos route and vice versa during Easter. At this moment in time, the day and the time of the charter flight are coordinated.

Tame will increase frequencies
Tame is analyzing to add a new frequency (at noon) to Guayaquil and a flight to Macas in the mid afternoon. In addition, it plans international flights on the Cuenca-Piura route that is a pending project since a time ago. The three frequencies will be accomplished by the incorporation to the fleet of the three new Turbo Propeller airplanes. The first will arrive to Cuenca in June.

LAN negotiates code shared with Tame to fly to Galapagos
6th of April, LAN Ecuador will begin its domestic flights in the country, beginning the same ones in the route that joins Quito to Guayaquil. Being authorized to enter Galapagos with a daily flight, it also negotiates with Tame to establish agreement of code shared in that destination. Due to this, the airline could commercialize the route, but the flights would be carried out in a Tame´s airplane.

CENTRAL AMERICA
Travelers with USA visa and Europeans of the Schengen space will be able to travel freely
El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua will allow the free transit of travelers who have USA, Canada visa or European countries that integrate the Schengen space. This measure will be applied to the four members of CA-4 group and will benefit travelers from about 70 countries.

MEXICO
Carnival anticipates decrease in Mexican destinations
Carnival Corp. waits for a slight decrease of its business in destinations to Mexico during 2009, due to the global economic recession. The company had a loss of 15% in its Caribbean routes in the two first months of the year, meanwhile in the Pacific the same levels of 2008 are kept.

Air Comet will begin operations in Benito Juarez Airport
The next months, Air Comet will arrive to the facilities of Benito Juarez International Airport of the Mexico City. The arrival of the airline is due to bilateral agreements that exist between Mexico and Spain and as well as to the capacity that the airport has mainly in Terminal 2.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
CAP Cana announces the construction of two hotels
Cap Cana announced the construction of two new hotels of luxury next to the AmResorts International company in its facilities in the east of the Dominical Republic, for that purpose, an investment of more than €147 millions will be destined. The Zoetry Wellness & Spa Resorts and Pure Secrets Resorts & Spa Hotels will be finished at the end of 2010 and they will be located in two privileged places.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

LATIN AMERICA
Taca in code sharing agreement with Lufthansa
Taca launched two code sharing flights with Lufthansa in the Frankfurt-Caracas-Lima and Frankfurt-Miami-San Salvador route, round trip.

SME in Travel? Click here!

LATIN AMERICA
Taca in code sharing agreement with Lufthansa
Taca launched two code sharing flights with Lufthansa in the Frankfurt-Caracas-Lima and Frankfurt-Miami-San Salvador route, round trip.

Hilton will construct 200 establishments in the region
Hilton Hotels will construct about 200 new hotels and resorts in Latin America and the Caribbean. According to an official announcement of the chain, the accommodations will be located in Colombia, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Venezuela, Puerto Rico, Costa Rica and Panama. The Brazilian market will be the main focus of the developments planned by the company in the region, with projects in Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Brasilia, Belo Horizonte, Porto Alegre, Manaus, Recife, and Goiania.

ARGENTINA
Argentine Airlines increases flights between Buenos Aires, Trelew and Esquel
Argentine Airlines and Austral increase their flights during May, June and July between Buenos Aires, Trelew and Esquel. There will be 14 weekly frequencies to Trelew and three to Esquel in May and June. 17 frequencies will be during the first week and five during the second week of July. Last year Trelew had eight weekly frequencies in May, 10 in June and 12 in July, whereas Esquel had only one weekly flight in May and none in June and July because of the eruption of the Chaitén volcano.

Canceled code sharing agreement with Air Comet
Airlines will not be accepting any tickets emitted by Air Comet from the 5th of March. The airline has decided to cancel the code sharing agreement and share that was maintained until recently with Air Comet.

LAN with 7 weekly frequencies between Sao Paulo and Buenos Aires
LAN Argentina will operate 7 daily flights between Buenos Aires and San Pablo from the 19 of April. Until this moment, the airline operates every day except on Sundays. A New flight, the 4552, will leave from Buenos Aires to arrive at the airport of Guarulhos in Sao Paulo.

Sol Lineas Aereas with daily flight to Montevideo
Sol Lineas Aereas began the 2009 with the incorporation of the fourth airplane Saab 340, at the same time it´s advancing in the acquisition of the two Boeings 737 of 120 seats. In addition, it added a new daily Montevideo – Buenos Aires – Montevideo flight.

Andres Lineas Aereas with more flights to the interior
Andres Lineas Aerias added a new daily frequency between Buenos Aires and Salta, with a stop in Cordova, and one flight that will do a stop three times a week in Iguazú. Nowadays, it also flights in regular form to Jujuy, Tucuman and Puerto Madryn. The company has three MD’s with capacity of 165 passengers.

Bair Fly flies to Rio Cuarto
Bair Fly already flies between Buenos Aires and the Cordovan city of Rio Cuarto. In this way, the flights, which had been suspended in 2004, will be resumed between both cities.

Train to the Clouds initiates season 2009
The 1st of April the Train to the Clouds will begin its 2009 season. Its departures are programmed for Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. The train, which goes up until the 4.200 mts of altitude, presents a renewed service on board, modification in the regime of meals and unification of prices for national and foreign tourists.

CHILE
Sky Airlines agrees with Pluna
Sky Airlines agreed with Pluna to allow the passengers of the latter to fly to tourist destinations of Chile like Punta Arenas and Puerto Montt.

BRAZIL
Tam will fly to Johannesburg in the second semester
Tam will fly to Johannesburg, South Africa, in the second semester of 2009. Among the plans of the airline are return to fly “the triangular” rout, which was popularized years ago by Paraguayan Airlines, that united Lima, Buenos Aires and Asunción.

America Airlines will reduce the flights to the Northeast in low season
American Airlines will reduce the special offer of flights to the Northeast of Brazil from the 8 of April, which is considered a period of the low season. The daily operated flights to Recife and Salvador will be operated five times a week until the 14 of June, the date in which they will retake the daily flights. Also, the seasonal flight to Rio de Janeiro will stop operating, which will be resumed in high season. With these changes, the AA offer in Brazil will be reduced by 17%.

PERU
Star Perú with new routs
Continuing with its plan of extension and fleet renewal with more BAe 146 airplanes, Star Perú inaugurated its new Lima- Puerto Maldonado route with a stop in Cusco, and will begin the Lima-Pisco-Cusco-Lima route by the second semester of this year. Moreover, the airline also plans to cover the route to Juliaca and unite it with Cusco.

Accord will open Novotel in June
Accor will open a four-star Novotel hotel in June, located in front of the Commercial Center in San Isidro (Lima). The project, which cost US$ 15 million, will have a capacity for 210 rooms, halls of meetings and a Spa. It is anticipated that its inauguration will be in the second semester of 2009.

Paracas Hotel will be reopen in September
In September the chain of the Libertador Hotels of Perú will reopen its hotel located in the bay of Paracas, the five star category hotel with a new infrastructure, whose price is US$ 30 million. The reopening of the Resort & Spa Libertador Paracas Hotel will be a soft opening that will allow them to evaluate the service of the hotel as well as the new characteristics of the market.

ECUADOR
Changes in the domestic market of aviation
LAN began to compete with Tame, Aerogal, Ícaro, Saéreo and VIP. The LAN´s operation will begin in the Quito-Guayaquil route, the most valued by the airlines. For this reason, LAN will have two Airbus 318 for 120 passengers. In May, another airplane will arrive for the Quito-Cuenca and Guayaquil-Cuenca routes.

COLOMBIA
Cartagena among the best bays of the world
Cartagena was included in the list of the beautiful bays of the world that elaborates an international club with its headquarters in France, revealed the authorities of the city. The entrance will take place in the V World Congress of the Most Beautiful Bays in the World, summoned for the middle of May in the Portuguese city of Setúbal.

GUATEMALA
Mayas Routes will be the new tourist product
Guatemala launched the “Mayan People” program of ethnic tourism that includes three new routes: Mayan Universe, Mayan Calendar, and Mayan Dualism. The objective of this initiative is to allow visitors to go deeper into the Mayan culture, knowing not only monuments that this civilization left, but also how their descendants are living. The three routes are operated by members of indigenous communities.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
JetBlue will fly between Santo Domingo and Boston
Starting in June, JetBlue will start non-stop flights in the Santo Domingo-Boston route from the airport of the Las Americas. The flights will take place on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, and will be daily during the high season of winter.

CUBA
Exposes replicas of Louvre in Havana
The exhibition “Images of the Louvre: Six centuries of European painting” gathers the main works of the European painting of the XIII and XIX centuries, which are exhibited to the public outdoors on the gates of the Force Castel in Old Havana. The exhibition consists of 101 photographic reproductions that include “The Gioconda”, of Leonardo da Vinci, and the “Altarpiece of the French Parliament”, of Dreaux Budé, among others. The picture that was brought to Cuba after being exhibited in The Dominican Republic will be shown until the 18 of May.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Argentine Airlines increases flights to the South

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Argentine Airlines increases flights to the South
Between the 1 of May and the 31 of July, Argentine Airlines and Austral will increase their frequencies to Ushuaia to thirty five weekly operations, whereas in the same time Grande River will receive ten weekly frequencies.

Buquebus with WiFi on board
Buquebus already has the wireless service of Internet in its ship Juan Patricio, which will also allow to improve the signal of cellular telephony and even to use the Skype system during the travel. This free service of wireless Internet is offering in Montevideo-Buenos Aires-Montevideo direct line and permits its clients to work comfortably on their personal computer, while the travel is developing.

Fen Hotels with new facilities in Buenos Aires
Fen Hotels inaugurated the Dazzler Tower Maipu and Splendor Palermo Hollywood, boutique style of avant-garde design of the chain that opened its doors the first of March. The building of eight floors arranges 21 Concept rooms totally equipped and with wi-fi connection without additional cost. The Dazzler Tower Maipu has ninety spacious Classic rooms

BRAZIL
Azul prepares its arrival to Rio de Janeiro
Although there is not yet specific date, the airline announced its arrival to the Santos Domunt Airport, where it will perform one of its hubs of distribution.

Delta Airlines with direct flights from Atlanta
From the first of July to the fourteenth of August, Delta Air lines will have three weekly direct flights Recife-Atlanta and three weekly flights Fortaleza-Atlanta. In addition, it will unite Atlanta and Brazil from the 17 of December, with a Boeing 757, three times per week. The Airline confirmed that the 21 of may will begin direct flights from Sao to Los Angeles.

BOLIVIA
BoA anticipates to begin commercial flights the 20 of March
Bolivian of Aviation would initiate its operations from the 20 of March after the Superintendence of Transport grants the Certificate of Commercial Operator. It is anticipated that its inaugural flight is the next 19 of March and begins the commercial operations the following day. The first flight would be La Paz-Cochabamba-La Paz route.

AeroSur includes Miami-Cochabamba direct flights
AeroSur now includes direct flights from Miami to Cochabamba. This new service will allow the users to save time, avoiding scales and will give the greater distinction to the International Airport of Cochabamba, Jorge Wilsterman, because a direct connection with one of the most important airport of the world is establishing.

Copa requests authorization to flight to Santa Cruz
Copa Airlines asked for authorization to operate to Bolivia. That request, that aspires to cover the route Panama-Santa Cruz-Panama, will be considered in a date not yet defined in a public audience.

PERU
Fourth hotel of Casa Andina in Miraflores at the end of the year
The chain of hotels Casa Andina will invest US$ 10 millions in its plans of expansion during the 2009. This include the construction of the new Casa Andina Classics hotel (three stars), that would be its fourth hotel in Miraflores. The new Andean House Classic will offer 160 rooms in 11 floors. The inauguration is planed to be within a year.

Five stars hotel will be constructed in Ucayali with US$ 4millions investment
Inversiones Turísticas de la Amazonía will assign US $ 4 millions to the construction of the five stars Ucayali River Hotel in Pucallpa city. The hotel will have 101 rooms in its more than 3000 m2. In it initial stage it will open 68 rooms, among which it will count on eight suites and one presidential suite. Moreover, the large room equipped for 500 people, business center, restaurant, casino, swimming pool in the terrace, among others services.

Lambayeque will have its first museum of religious art
The district of Monsefú in Lambayeque will have its first museum of religious art that will be equipped in the complex of the church San Pedro. The museum will have an exposition hall to exhibit the attire and the vestments of the Captive Lord of Monsefú, the patron saint of this zone, and a special room for the exhibition of his jewels. The investment of the project ascends to S/. 125. 000.

The Lima-Huanuco-Lima tourist train will leave twice per month from April
From April and to November, the Lima-Huanuco-Lima tourist train will increase from one to two its frequencies of trips every month, being its next departure for Friday 20 of March. In April the departures will be Thursday 9 and Friday 24.

ECUADOR
UNESCO analyzes the possibility to remove Galápagos out of heritage in danger
UNESCO is studying the possibility to remove or not Galapagos out of the Heritages in Danger list, this, after analyzing the last report that Ecuador sent on the undertaken actions to improve its conservation. The luck of the Ecuadorian archipelago will be defined the 18 of June during the meeting of the Heritage Committee in Sevilla, Spain. There the Representatives of the 21 one countries members, among them Brazil and Barbados representing Latin America, will evaluate if Ecuador adjusted to the recommendations to take better care of their main natural heritage.

COLOMBIA
Lan prepares its arrival to Cartagena
LAN Peru will begin direct flights, Wednesday and Sunday, between Lima and Cartagena the 29 of April, for which it has already advanced in the preparation of its operations in the Rafael Nuñes airport

MEXICO
Hotel opens within hospital
A private hospital of the Mexico City have inaugurated in its facilities a Holiday Inn in order to attend the called medical tourism, travelers who visit the country in order to perform some surgery or treatment. The hotel has 72 rooms and has as main goal to provide a new additional service for patients and relatives who require staying in this hospital center. The facilities of the hotel are between fifth floor and seventh of the third tower of the building, located in the south of the Mexican capital.

Mexicana Inter began domestic flights
Recently, Mexicana Inter began operations attending the Mexican domestic and regional market. The company, subsidiary of Mexicana Group- which controls the Mexicana de Aviación and Click-, will fly, in the beginning all its routes from Guadalajara to Puerto Vallarta, Torreon, Veracruz, Monterrey, Chihuahua, Ciudad Juarez, Mazatlan and Tampico, among others destinations.

Aeromexico announced growth of its fleet
Aeromexico informed that, during the current year, will maintain its strategy of expansion and investments, for this reason, during the next six months, its Aeromexico Connect regional line will receive 7 airplanes Embraer 145 with capacity of 50 passengers, with these airplanes the company will offer service to 12 national routes and cover 48 destinations in the country.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
New tourist signaling launched in Buenos Aires

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
New tourist signaling launched in Buenos Aires
The new tourist signaling at the Av. de Mayo area, developed under the Plan of Prioritization and Diversification of Provision of Tourist Services considers the relocation and installation of signposts in 12 areas in the capital: San Telmo, Montserrat, La Boca, Av. de Mayo, Puerto Madero, Flores, San Nicolás, Plaza San Martín-Retiro, Recoleta, el Abasto, Belgrano and Barracas.

Buenos Aires consolidates as a “reproduction tourist” destination
In recent years, the number of people has increased who arrive in Buenos Aires to follow assisted reproduction treatments. The demand is so high that many local operators are already offering packages for “reproduction tourists” that include visits to glaciers and the Iguaçu Falls.

Club Hoteles Boutique de Calidad adds new members
This season, The BBH, the first Club Hoteles Boutique de Calidad in Argentina, admitted the following establishments as new members: Krista Hotel Boutique in Buenos Aires (December 2008), La Casa de Eugenia in San Martín de los Andes, Estancia El Colibrí in Córdoba, and House of Jasmines in Salta (January). The latest admittance was Correntoso Lake & River Hotel in Villa La Angostura, Neuquén, so far totaling 15 members of Best Boutique Hotels.

BRAZIL
Gol installed self-check-in terminals in Sao Paulo and Rio
Gol installed self-check-in kiosks at the Garulhos (Sao Paulo) and Galeao/Tom Jobim (Rio de Janeiro) international airports. The service is available to domestic flight passengers with or without luggage. Check-in should be completed up to 30 minutes before flight departure.

BOLIVIA
BoA one-step away from start-up
BoA is just one step away from starting operations in Bolivia, now that it has been granted the Air Operator Certification by the Directorate-General of Civil Aviation. The airline is completing the last administrative proceedings with the Superintendence of Transport to get the final permit –the Commercial Operation Certification– to start actual operations in the country.

PERU
The Amazon River ranks first in the 7 Natural Wonders contest
The Amazon River climbed up to the top in Group E of the contest that will choose the world’s Seven Natural Wonders, according to the last ranking published by the New 7 Wonders Foundation. The Amazon –whose candidacy is shared by Peru, Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia and the French Guiana– had remained second for one month.

Lake Titicaca floating islands to be cut back from 50 to 30
The floating islands will be reorganized and will be trimmed back from 50 to 30, so that tourists could be better catered to. Each island receives between 500 and 800 tourists a day; however, some of them have a very small population and can provide but poor service to visitors, if at all. Only the largest ones and those with more families will continue receiving tourists.

New services by Libertador Hotels
Libertador Hotels has novel and exclusive products for its guests: a luxury yacht that will set sail from La Punta until the opening of Hotel Libertador Paracas in September 2009 –then the yacht (a catamaran) will set sail from Paracas; a 12-passenger plane to fly over the Nazca lines, which will depart from Pisco; and finally, a private 8-passenger plane exclusive for the guests of this chain, that will fly between the various destinations where Libertador hotels are located.

A 5 star hotel built at Pimentel Beach
With a US$ 500,000 investment, a 54-room 5 star hotel has been finished at the Pimentel, Lambayeque beach. The establishment has a gourmet restaurant, suites with Jacuzzi, and terraces with rooms, among other services.

qp Hotels to open five hotels in Peru by 2013
qp Hotels plans to open 5 boutique hotels in Peru by 2013. The hotel chain may already have confirmed a first project in Arequipa and may be assessing future projects in such cities as Trujillo and Lima (Miraflores).

COLOMBIA
Avianca to start direct flights from Cali and Medellín to Panama
Avianca is completing administrative proceedings to establish direct flights from Cali and Medellin to Panama to offer –via its affiliate Sam– new flight options to travelers from Antioquia and Valle del Cauca to Panama and vice versa. Colombian travelers and those from the region will have four daily flights (28 weekly links) available via Avianca-Sam between Colombia and Panama City. These new flights will be served by a Fokker-100.

MEXICO
Mexico among world’s favorite destinations
In 2008 Mexico was chosen as one of the favorite destinations for both domestic and foreign tourists. According to a survey conducted by Despegar.com and data from the Council for Tourist Promotion, Mexico is preferred by 30 percent of all world’s travelers, especially Cancun, followed by the United States with 21 percent, where New York and Las Vegas are the cities with highest demand; Central and South America (17 percent), and Europe (13 percent).

Air Comet to fly to DF starting June 15
Effective June 15, Air Comet will start operating its new Madrid-Mexico route on a daily basis, thus broadening its network towards Latin America.

CUBA
Havana to host the MITM Americas 2009
The 15th MITM Americas, Meetings and Incentive Travel Market, will be held in Havana, Cuba, on November 18 and 19. Purchasers invited to the MITM are European “hosted buyers” of incentives and meetings. MITM will keep its successful format of pre-requested and pre-arranged individual meetings between exhibitors and purchasers, continuing its small-show concept, focusing on quality rather than on quantity, and equating the number of purchasers to that of exhibitors. US purchasers will also attend the event, despite being held in Cuba.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
GPS helps tourists cross Patagonic zone

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
GPS helps tourists cross Patagonic zone
An innovative project is put into practice to cross the Patagonic zone. It is a system with tourist topics of interest for GPS platforms and is acquired with a chip in the car rental companies, through which alternative routes and non-traditional trips are offered without tourist guides to be in the region.

There are already 65 hotel boutiques in Buenos Aires
There are 65 hotel boutiques in Buenos Aires and in the future three more will be inaugurated during this year. 27 of them are located in Palermo, 15 in San Telmo and the rest among Las Cañitas, Nuñez, Recoleta, Monserrat, Almagro, Balvanera, La Boca, Boedo and Belgrano

URUGUAY
Among the 20 best places for 2009, according to Condé Nast Traveller
Uruguay is in number 16, together with destinies like Amsterdam, Chile, Chicago, Madagascar, Malta, Panamá, Vietnam, among others .It was done an excellent description of the country. The publication describes it as the smallest Spanish speaking country, as well as the safest in Latin America.

BRAZIL
Tourists will have preferential treatment during the 2009 edition of the Rio Carnival
Tourists who are located in Sector 9 of the Rio Sambadrome during this year’s carnival will have all the comforts needed to enjoy the parade of samba schools. 60 bilingual professionals will be in the place to receive the 719 thousand tourists expected for the event. It is expected earnings of US$521 million only from the movement of visitors in the city during the carnival.

TAM asked for new frequencies to Chile and Uruguay
The National Civil Aviation agency is evaluating 7 new frequencies to Chile and 14 to Uruguay as well as a third one related to the addendums to the shared codes agreements signed with LAN Airlines and LAN Peru.

CHILE
Cruises will leave extraordinary earnings
The arrival of cruises will leave important earnings to its economy. The passengers from ships like “Star Princess” or “Queen Mary II” spend approximately between US$40 and US$70 per day. It is predicted that 39 ships will have arrived until the month of April. “Discovery”, “Celebrity Infiniti”, “Marco Polo I y II” and “Nippon Maru” are considered among them.

Awasi rewarded with the “2009 Tablet Hotels Selection Award”
Tablet Hotels, world leader in the advice and selection of hotel boutiques, unique and luxurious all over the world, announced that Awasi was rewarded with the “2009 Tablet Hotels Selection Award”. This prize, presented for the first time this year, recognizes Awasi’s excellence in terms of service and infrastructure as well as travellers satisfaction, maintaining consistently a 17 out of 20 in an on line survey for the visitors who have been in that property.

PERU
Does not expect a significant reduction in tourism due to the crisis
In spite of the world economic crisis, Peru does not expect a significant reduction for 2009. Peruvian authorities express optimism about the development of foreign tourism in the country. However, there is a “fear” abroad because there is no certainty about future income.

The Colca Valley received more than nine thousand tourists in January
The Colca Valley received 9,144 tourists in January, a 31 percent increase compared to the same period last year. This important increase in tourism to this area is due to the intensive promotional campaign in order for the Colca Canyon to be selected as one of the seven natural wonders in the world.

COLOMBIA
Foreign tourism increases 100% between 2003 and 2008
Colombia had an average growth rate of 18 percent during the last four years. This percentage meant that the country went from 624,990 foreign visitors received in 2003 to 1.2 million in 2008. It is important to note that there are more visitors to Colombia that come by sea. During the first quarter of 2008, the passengers who came on cruise ships had an increase of 172 percent.

Decameron plans an investment over US$25 million in order to strengthen operations
Decameron will increase the number of hotels in Barú, the Atlantic Coast, Cabo de la Vela, the Guajira, Tota, Boyaca, Bogotá and another one in Mompichen (Ecuador), with a new focus of its Business towards the corporate and Business tourism. The Baru Hotel will be opened in December and will have 330 rooms, a conventions centre with a total capacity of 600 people.

VENEZUELA
Reduces its seats offer for Aruba, Curazao and Panamá
The Nationa Institute of Civil Aeronautics suspended the issuance of permits to operate non-scheduled flights to destinations such as Aruba, Curacao, Panama or Margarita. The demand of Venezuelan Tourists has turned, for the Carnival season, to places like Cartagena, San Andrés or Santa Marta in Colombia as well as other places in Central America, including Panama.

GUATEMALA
Old Guatemala selected as the Best City in 2009
Old Guatemala was selected as “The Best City of the Year 2009” by the magazine Wanderlust during the London Destination Travel Show fair that ended recently. Old Guatemala won the first prize of its category , beating the city of Kyoto in Japan and the city of Boston in the United States that won the second and third place, respectively, as well as more than 600 destinations from all over the world.

MEXICO
Aeromexico increases its destinations
AeroMéxico increased new destinations inside its network of national connections. Flights from Toluca to Guadalajara and Monterrey, as well as from México to Tampico, San Luis de Potosí, Ciudad Victoria, Nuevo Laredo, Tuxtla Gutiérrez and Huatulco, Lázaro Cárdenas, Tepic and Colima will be operated between March and July, through AeroMéxico Connect. The company has been offering since the end of January two weekly non stop flights between Las Vegas and Ciudad de México. Two routes have also been inaugurated inside the United States, Denver and San Francisco, and will fly soon to Toronto (Canada).

New IHG hotels
InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) reported that it will open this year 21 hotels in the country despite the current economic crisis. This hotels are part of the 62 hotels that the chain is planning to open in the next three years.

CUBA
Hotel Copacabana returns
After having completed the first stage of its current redevelopment with 44 rooms, this hotel is one of the best known hotels for its inspiration in the Brazilian culture and music, and the excellent position in a coastal strip, near the Cuban National Aquarium.

RIU will open a new hotel in 2010
Riu Hotels & Resorts is preparing the opening, expected for the summer of 2010 of a new hotel in Cuba. It will have 1,110 rooms. The Riu Varadero, located in the beach, will offer the ‘All Inclusive by RIU’ service and it will have a main building of one floor and connecting buildings. It will also have theme related restaurants, a ‘lobby bar’, a theatre bar, two ‘snack bars’ in the swimming pools zone and two aquatic bars. The hotels will also have two swimming pools, a children’s pool and a solarium terrace.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

COSTA RICA
Marriott opened Resort in Guanacaste
Marriott International opened the JW Marriott Guanacaste Resort & Spa, the fourth Hotel that the Company opens in this country.

ARGENTINA

SME in Travel? Click here!

COSTA RICA
Marriott opened Resort in Guanacaste
Marriott International opened the JW Marriott Guanacaste Resort & Spa, the fourth Hotel that the Company opens in this country.

ARGENTINA
Aerolineas will add flights to El Calafate
Aerolineas Argentinas will increase the frequency of flights in winter to El Calafate, to 4 or 5 flights per week.

Ushuaia, the main port for cruises in the hemisphere
Ushuaia will have396 operations of touristic cruises, which will make it the main port f this activity in the southern hemisphere. Ushuaia’s Tourism Secretary mentioned that the main segment of these cruises that operate in Ushuaia is the visit to the Antarctic.

URUGUAY
Tax-free would be put into effect in Montevideo and Colonia starting this month
The Government announced that the Tax Free benefit could start this month. The legislation establishes the tax refund on purchases of Uruguayan products made by foreign tourists. The transaction will be possible to do it in the ports of Montevideo and Colonia. The transaction ticket should be presented and, if the product appears in the list “Made in Uruguay”, the discount of the value added tax (22 percent) will be applied.

BRAZIL
US Airways interested on flying to Río de Janeiro
US Airways asked the Department of Transportation the opening of the route between the city of Charlotte, North Carolina, and Río de Janeiro, even though the beginning of the flight would be the city of Philadelphia. Continental Airlines has already asked for a route that will start on June 1st between Houston and New Orleans with Río de Janeiro, while Spirit Airlines is waiting for the approval of daily flights between Fort Lauderdale and Manaus, which is expected to start in October.

Brasilia will have special bus for city tour
Brasilia will offer, starting in March, a City Tour for local visitors and foreign tourist in an especially equipped two floor bus. The service will be done by Brasiliatur together with the Secretary of Economic Development and Tourism. The circuit will have three routes: the city, the cultural aspects and the nightlife.

BOLIVIA
Lab will include more airplanes
Lloyd Aereo Boliviano (LAB) announced the arrival in the following days of the second B727-200 to continue covering the routes inside and outside of the country. The airline’s General Manager informed that more planes are programmed to arrive in order to attend the routes inside and outsider of Bolivia. LAB started its operations officially last Saturday, after the Superintendency of Transports granted the operations license for five years.

PERU
Mincetur presented the Moche route
The Minister of Foreign Trade and Tourism presented in Trujillo the action of plan of the Moche Route, focused on promoting the many tourist attractions of the cities of La Libertad and Lambayeque. The plan, to be implemented in two years, will improve in its first stage the services in the main tourist attractions and will also promote the route at a national and international level.

Huaca Rajada Museum – Sipan the best in the whole country
The Huaca Rajada – Sipan Museum, inaugurated last Thursday, is considered the best Site Museum in the country, according to the archaeologist Walter Alva. The cultural centre is located one hundred meters from the site of the Lord of Sipan Tomb discovered in 1987, in the district of Zaña, 40 minutes from Chiclayo.

Casa Andina will remodel the former San Jose Hacienda
In order to convert it into a four or five star hotel, the Casa Andina Hotels chain will start in February and March the remodeling works in the former San Jose Hacienda, in Chincha. These works could be finished by early 2010, and it would be the first high class hotel in the zone in one of the most emblematic coastal haciendas in the country. It will have 65 rooms, which will include 11 suites, in an area of 12 hectares. It will also have a convention centre for 600 people, a swimming pool, two bars, restaurant, spa and gym, among other services.

Sheraton Lima Hotel announced a first level service for the corporate sector
More than 200 refurbished rooms with more comfort and latest technology accessories are some of the most recent changes that the Sheraton Lima Hotel did, according to Osvaldo Librizzi, President of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Latin America.

ECUADOR
Loja inaugurated its first Five-star Hotel
The Howard Johnson Hotel is the first Five-star Hotel in the city. It has 7,900 m2 in 11 floors, 73 rooms (44 doubles, 24 simple and five suites), five areas for social events and a terrace with swimming pool. Howard Johnson is operated by GHL Hotels, a chain that has a presence in Panama, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru and, in the near future, in Chile.

COLOMBIA
Aerolineas will increase the number of national as well as foreign flights
Civil Aeronautical authorities gave the authorization for routes and frequencies that the national and foreign Airlines asked for in December, 2008, giving green Light to four local Airlines, which asked for connecting routes, at a national and international level, as well as four foreign companies that asked for permission to enter into Colombia or expand its operations inside the country. Avianca received the approval of two new frequencies in the route Bogota – New York and Sam will be able to fly to Panama from Medellin and Cali. Easy Fly will do the same with flights from Bogotá to Cali and Pereira, and Aires will be able to operate 14 destinies and 231 frequencies.

Accor announced hotel projects
The Accor Group presented the plans that will develop in Colombia over the next three years, which will make it the first in doing direct investment in the country. The expansion of the Business in Colombia will take place, first, in the construction of five Hotels of the Ibis brand, specialized in the corporate regional and national segment. Two of the Ibis Hotels are already in the construction stage and they are located in Bogota, near the National Museum and in Medellin.

NICARAGUA
Tourist entry Visa is suppressed

The authorities announced the suppression of entry visas for international visitors in its territory in order to promote tourism even more. The announcement was made by Mario Salina, Minister of Tourism and pro tempore president of the Central American Council of Tourism, who emphasized the importance of this announcement in order to promote tourism in the country.

MEXICO
Mexicana launched a new low cost airline
The Ministry of Communications and Transports gave the new concession authorization to operate an airline to Mexicana of Aviation. With a US$ 7 million investment, Mexicana Inter will start operating on March 15th with an expectation of completing 24 routes, announced the General Director of Mexicana. He also informed that the new airline will have a fleet of 13 airplanes of the CRJ-200 type. The operations centre has not yet been defined. Mexicana Inter will cover routes from Guadalajara to Puerto Vallarta, Torreon, Monterrey, Mazatlan, Chihuahua, Ciudad Juarez, Veracruz and Tampico, the last two without competition in the market. The airline is considered a supplier and not regional, taking into consideration that it will supply passengers to the flights from Mexicana and Mexicana Click.

LATIN AMERICA
Starwood expands
Osvaldo Librizzi, the Corporation’s Regional President reported that it is expected to open a new place in Mexico by the end of the year and another one in Buenos Aires in 2010, estimating that by either May or June a new Hotel of the brand “W” will be inaugurated in Chile. It is also expected the opening of the Westin in Lima, the first in South America. With this first level brand, It is expected to repeat the model in cities like Santiago, Buenos Aires and Brazil. It was also announced the opening of one in Santa Fe, financial destiny in the city of Mexico.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
LAN adds third frequency to Salta

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
LAN adds third frequency to Salta
LAN adds a third frequency to the city of Salta. The flight leaves Aeroparque arriving at the Martin Miguel de Güemes Airport. The local manager reported that the morning and even flights are still maintained, and that the service is done by an Airbus 320 with a total capacity for 168 passengers.

Sofitel remodels the Buenos Aires hotel
The Sofitel chain announced an investment of US $ 1.2 million in order to remodel its Sofitel Hotel located in Buenos Aires. The funds were used for the renewal of the gym’s area, which includes the purchase of new machines and Italian equipments. The Hotel also announced that it will return to its membership program for clients in general during this year.

The Mate Museum is born in Buenos Aires
The Nation’s Tourism Secretary presented the Mate Museum, which will be opened in the city of Tigre. The Museum will have a collection of more than three thousand pieces as well as a tour of the history of the Mate, from its discovery until today. The smallest mates in the world will also be exhibited, mates and historical crystal bulbs, books about the mate, old musical instruments with matera pumpkin and other pieces made with mates.

CHILE
Surpasses 300 thousand foreign visits in January
312,000 foreigners have entered Chile during the month of January. This number shows an 8 percent increase compared with the same month in 2008. lo que representa un aumento de 8 percent con respecto al mismo mes de 2008. It is expected that by the end of the austral summer, the Lumber of visits should reach 750,000.

BRAZIL
TAP will link Moscow with Sao Paulo starting in June
TAP will fly five times per week starting in June, linking Moscow and Lisbon with Sao Paulo. This new connection will generate an important increase of Russian tourism to the country.

PERU
Machupicchu will be the scenario for a Werner Herzog’s documentary
Werner Herzog is in Cusco filming a documentary in the Vilcanota River. Herzog reported that Peru is the best country where he has been able to do these movies. This documentary talks about an anecdote that happened in the 70s in the area of Machupicchu.

Bird watching in the Pomac’s Forest
The Historical Sanctuary Pomac’s Forest offers an excellent opportunity for economic progress for Lambayeque with the promotion of the specialized tourism of bird watching. This place concentrates a wide variety of birds that can only be observed in that area. The birds that stand out are the hornero or chilala, the putilla, the chisco as well as the Peruvian cortarrama.

XX Adventure Sports Festival 2009
During February 28th and March 1st, the XX Adventure Sports Festival 2009 will be held in Lunahuana. Canoeing, kayaking, climbing and mountain biking are some of the Sports that will be done in this important event.

Chinese entrepreneurs will Guild a 2000 bedroom hotel
A group of Chinese entrepreneurs would be interested on building a 2000 bedroom hotel in Cusco. If this project becomes a reality, it will be the biggest hotel in the country.

2.5 kilometers of Chan Chan city walls in Trujillo are restored
After a long period of work, 2.5km of the perimeter walls of Chan Chan were restored. In the following months, the restoration works will be done with different projects and budgets in order to maintain the city.

Juliaca’s Carnival will be transmitted live through the Internet
The Juliaca’s Carnival will be transmitted live through the Internet. The website www.andina.pe se will be in charge of transmitting this important event.

Ecuadorean Airline interested on entering the North of Peru
Tourism Galapagos expressed its interest to operate in Peru, mainly in the Northern zones of Cajamarca, Chiclayo, Piura and Tumbes, which are part of the Bi national Technical Committee Peru–Ecuador. The proposal has been taken favorably by the authorities of the Peruvian Technical Committee that work in the tourism sector.

ECUADOR
Guayaquil will have three new luxury hotels
The construction of the new Swissotel Guayaquil will start soon. It will have 35 floors, parking lots, saloons for special events, swimming pools, apartments and everything related to the hotel activity. This Hotel will be the second in the country, because there is one operating in Quito. It will also have a gymnasium, spa and a restaurant. It is considered that with this new hotel, the tourism in this city will increase by 35.5 percent.

COLOMBIA
Macondo will be the new touristic product
The town of Macondo, the place of the famous novel One Hundred Years of Solitude, will be used by Colombia to promote the virtues of the Caribbean zone of the country. The Corporation Tourism Cartagena and the Colombian Association of Authorities of the Colombian Caribbean will present the products Macondo Route and the Natural Caribbean of the Promotional Touristic Fund, during the first semester of 2009. The new product will connect seven departments of that Colombian region: La Guajira, Magdalena, Bolivar, Atlantico, Sucre, Cesar and Cordoba.

REP. DOMINICA
Caribair suspended for infringing civil aero nautical regulations
The Dominican Institute of Civil Aviation confirmed the suspension of the airline Caribair for one year due to violations of the law and the Dominican aero-nautical regulations, due to the fact that it did commercial flights like private. The Institute reported that, since the company received its license as an aero nautical operator, it has been suspended up to 15 days and has also been intervened for periods up to 3 months.

MEXICO
Mexicana prepared to land in Spain
Mexicana will arrive in Spain in February 12th with daily flights, operated by its new wide cabin airplanes A330, which continues strengthening its expansion and growth plan, consolidating its presence in the European market.

CUBA
Melia Las Americas leader in golf
Melia Las Americas led the practice of Cuba by concentrating 46.4 percent of the rounds that were placed in the 18-hole camp of Varadero during 2008. In this way the hotel, conceived only for adults from the age of 18 years old, consolidates as an specialist in this demanding segment. Melia Las Americas is the only hotel with direct access to the Varadero Golf Club, an 18 hole camp, Par 72, with 6,269 linear meters (6 856 yards) of path between the first tee or exit and the green 18.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Iguazu Falls receive tourists with an unusual flow of water

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Iguazu Falls receive tourists with an unusual flow of water
The Iguazu Falls show a higher than usual flow of water due to the intense rains occurring in Brazil. With this additional attraction, the dazzling show that offers the 275 waterfalls in the middle of the jungle has been seen by more than 80,000 people in January.

BRAZIL
TAM with four additional flights per week to Miami
Tam increased the number of flights to Miami, from last Monday until March 1st, in order to serve the increasing demand during high season.

Azul is looking for a higher market share.
In its first year of operations, Azul wants to become the third most important company in the domestic Brazilian market. The low cost strategy will be used against the giants TAM and Gol, that dominate 92 percent of the Brazilian air traffic market.

CHILE
LAN selected as the best airline in Central and South America.
For a third year in a row, the magazine Global Traveller awarded LAN as the best airline in Central and South America. This distinction was given based on the opinion of more than 31 thousand readers of this magazine that took part in the survey to select the best companies in luxury and business trips during 2008.

Sky Airlines would fly to Lima
Sky Airlines would be interested in the route Santiago–Lima, as an aspiration to start growing, beginning from the neighbouring countries. “Argentina is a possibility and Peru is the natural step of an airline that wants to begin its international operations”, according to the airline.

BOLIVIA
BoA Delays the beginning of its operations
Boliviana of Aviation would not start to operate by the end of January, as it was expected. The arrival of the first B737-300 of the company has been delayed due to administrative problems, which would make it difficult to comply with the initial take-off date. The company is also waiting for the certificate that would certify it as an airline carrier.

PERU
The Inca Trail to Machupicchu is going to close because of maintenance works.
Starting February 1st, the transit through the Inca Trail that leads to Machupicchu will be closed for one month in order to do refurbishment, conservation, cleaning and adequacy to roads works and camps. These works have been done since 2002, according to the Regulations for the Use of the Inca Trail.

The Inca Trail to Sacsahuaman will open to tourists
Starting in February the Inca Trail of the Archaeological Park of Sacsahuaman will be open to tourists. This circuit goes farther than the visit to the monumental zone of Sacsahuaman, which is what is allowed today by the tourist ticket of Cusco. The new aspect of the tour is the visit to the Inca Jail, located in Kallachaca, located more than 3 thousand meters of altitude. There are constructions built in carved stones; precincts forming a ceramic workshop, colcas with burned corn, which shows an evidence of funeral offerings and niches that would have been occupied by mummies.

JW Marriott builds a hotel in Cusco
The JW Marriott Hotel is building a five star hotel in Cusco, which will be located on the ground of the former Saint Augustine Monastery. It expects to start operations at the end of 2010 and it will have 144 rooms, 6 luxury suites, bar , restaurant, meeting rooms, a business centre and a Spa.

The San Agustin chain would open 4 star Hotels in Trujillo and Puno by 2010.
San Agustin Hotels would open to 4 star Hotels in Trujillo and Puno by 2010, as an step of its expansion and consolidation process. There will be a 110 room hotel in Trujillo. During that year, it is expected the construction of a hotel by the shores of Lake Titicaca. Talking about the Hotel in el Chaco La Puntilla , in Paracas (Ica), it is programmed for the beginning of next February and should be finished in July of 2010.

ECUADOR
Quito will host the 2009 Orchids Universal Expo
Starting February 4th until the 8th, the Itchimbía Cultural Centre will be the scenario of a fantastic and diversified exhibition of orchids from Ecuador and the World, where there will be delegations from more than 12 countries. The Expo will be open to the public from Thursday February 5th until Sunday February 8th.

COLOMBIA
Aviatur gets into the hotel business
With an investment close to 14,000 million pesos, the company is entering the corporate hotel Business with the construction of its first Avia hotel in the country, the Avia 93. It is going to have 40 rooms, restaurant, a spa and parking spaces. The constructions works have already started and it will be located in the park of the 93 in Bogota.

TACA will star again its flights to Cartagena – Mompox
Taca announced that it will start, before one month from now, the operation of the route Cartagena – Mompox, after reaching an agreement of the necessary support for the re opening of the San Bernardo Airport, closed for more than six years.

Estelar began its expansion with a hotel in Arequipa (Perú)
Estelar hotel chain began its international expansion with the beginning of the management of a hotel in Arequipa (Perú). The hotel, under the name Lago Estelar (Estelar Lake), has 52 rooms, four saloons of special events with a total capacity of up to 1,000 people, a restaurant, 10,000 m2 of green areas, swimming pools and a business centre. The international expansion will continue with the opening of a hotel in Panama, and, in Colombia is expected the grand opening of the Estelar Villa de Oro, the second hotel in the city of Medellin. The opening is expected for May.

REP.DOMINICA
Santo Domingo invests US$ 45 million in a new terminal in Sansouci
US $45 million were invested in the modern terminal of the Port of Sans Souci, which was inaugurated recently, and included the renewal of the Port of Santo Domingo and dredging works.

A new terminal is opened in the Punta Cana International Airport
The newest passenger terminal was opened in the Punta Cana International Airport with a total cost of US$ 9’883,465, distributed between construction and equipment. This is the first airport in Dominican Republic that has installed the “Common Use Self Support” system approved by IATA, which will allow the users of the system to choose the airline from a simple kiosk, where they will also be able to print their plane tickets as well as their luggage tags.

MEXICO
Aeromexico could suspend flights to China
Even though a final decision has not been taken, Aeromexico reported that it would suspend its operations to China temporarily starting April 20th.

Mexicana de Aviación will fly between Mexico and Madrid
Mexicana de Aviación will start flights between DF and Madrid on February 11th, with a daily frequency both ways. The route will be operated by two Airbus A330with a capacity for 211 passengers, 163 in tourist class and 48 in Elite Class.

CUBA
Hotel Capacity grows in Cayo Coco
The hotel capacity in Cayo Coco, included in the tourist Packaged of Jardines del Rey( The King’s Gardens), increased with the opening of a new 320 room hotel. The Blue Bay Balconies, owned by the Gaviota Group, shows the introduction of the Spanish company Hotetur in the region. It has a four star category and has 154 suites, distributed in two floor bungalows, besides other recreational facilities. In this way, this destiny has now 3,900 rooms, distributed among 13 hotels and villas.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

BRAZIL
Florianopolis, third best gay destination

SME in Travel? Click here!

BRAZIL
Florianopolis, third best gay destination
Florianopolis is considered the third best Brazilian destination for gay tourists. Such places as Mole Beach or La Galheta Beach are becoming well-known spots by gay tourists from around the world for good reasons –the prevailing open-minded attitude among locals and the array of services offered are some of them. There are exclusive nightclubs, nude beaches and gay-friendly hotels like Eco Vila. Even the most exclusive establishments –such as the Majestic Palace hotel downtown- is also tearing down some walls.

TAM started new on-board service for international flights
TAM started its new international on-board service called “Brazil Aboard”. The delicacies first-class passengers can now enjoy include crab salad with tapioca biju and cheese mousse, as well as marajoara chicken served in a miniabóbora with white rice and broccoli. End your meal with a trio of local desserts: quindim, some creamy coconut cake, and sweet of milk.

TAM launched TAM Brazil Airpass and TAM South America Airpass
On January 1st TAM started selling the 2009 version of TAM Brazil Airpass and TAM South America Airpass. With them, passengers who don’t live in Brazil, including Brazilians living abroad, will be able to travel to a number of destinations in Brazil and South America paying discounted rates. To get TAM Brazil Airpass, passengers have to buy an international air ticket from any place outside Brazil to any Brazilian city. TAM’s promotional pass will be issued as a separated ticket and attached to the international ticket.

TAM to place a Boeing 777-300 in GR—London route
Tam launched its route to the UK with the operation of a new Boeing 777-300ER. Now all flights between São Paulo (Guarulhos) and London (Heathrow) will use this airliner with a seating capacity of 365 passengers (63 in executive class and 302 in economy class).

Hilton to open hotel in Salvador de Bahia
Hilton Hotels Corporation signed a multiyear agreement with Grupo IMOCOM to manage a 5-star, full-service Hilton Hotel in Salvador de Bahia. The establishment is 30 km away from the Salvador International Airport and will feature 170 rooms furnished with the new Hilton Serenity Collection of white sheets and mattresses. Other amenities include a gym, a spa, and 280-plus-square-meter shopping area, while business travellers will have available a 743-sq-mt area for business meetings with 6 conference rooms and 2 meeting rooms.

El Carmen Convent considered first historical hotel
El Carmen Convent Hotel, one of the historical icons of Brazil, is one of the finest luxury accommodation and cuisine choices in the city, and is part of the select list of Leading Hotels. The building still keeps its most peculiar feature: silence. Style has also been well preserved. The seventy-nine monastic cells are now rooms with plasma TV sets, among other furnishings, although still with shaded lights, separated by huge, labyrinthine corridors and isolated by 80-cm thick walls –just as in their old days.

PERU
Puno inventoried 96 tourist sites
Lake Titicaca will no longer be the only attraction in Puno –now that 96 spots that have been inventoried as tourist sites in the region. They are located in several provinces: Azángaro, Carabaya, Chucuito, Collao, Huancané, Lampa, Melgar, Puno, Sandia, Moho, Putina, Yunguyo and San Román. The most visited places in 2008 were Lake Titicaca, Los Uros islands, Amantaní, Taquile, and the chullpas (high stone buildings) in Sillustani. Llachón, Ccotos, Ticonata, Capachica, Atuncolla, are preferred by tourists to spend a few days living with local inhabitants.

Taca to start direct flights Lima – Havana in March
Taca has announced that starting March 23rd there will be direct flights connecting Lima and Havana three times a week, thus becoming the only airline to join both countries non-stop.

Libertador Hotel remodelling works in Cusco to begin by mid-year
Remodelling works at the Libertador Cusco Inka Palace Hotel –which faces the Santo Domingo Convent and Koricancha Palace- will start between March and August this year, and will take 12 to 15 to complete. Remodelling includes enlarging all rooms, building a spa, and changing furnishings.

ECUADOR
Galapagos considered between top-three must-go destination
The New York Times, in its special publication on travel issued last Sunday, January 11th, included Galapagos Islands as the third most-recommended tourist place for their readers to go in 2009. The publication gives a number of reasons to do so —the bicentennial of British scientist Charles Darwin and the 150th anniversary of the first edition of “The Origin of Species”, a book that contains his scientific experiences during his visit to the Islands.

GUATEMALA
Tax on cruise travels suspended
The effectiveness of the US$10 tax charged to cruising tourists was deferred by the government on threats by cruiser owners to exclude Guatemala from the list of destinations. Executives of the cruise industry and government officials met yesterday to reach an agreement on the controversial charge, which was suspended until May 1st, or until an agreement is reached.

MEXICO
Airlines reduced prices by more than half
As a result of decreased number of passengers and excess supply of airplane seats, Mexican airlines have reduced by more than 50 percent their ticket prices to the main national and international destinations. Aeroméxico, Mexicana de Aviación, Volaris, Interjet and Aviacsa are offering discounts as part of their strategy to appeal more customers and increase their income.

CUBA
Barceló opened fourth hotel
Barceló opened Barceló Cayo Santa Maria Beach in Cuba, a 5-star establishment with 624 rooms that will marketed under the Barceló Premium mark. It will be located at seashore of key Santa Maria and will be completed by 2010. It will feature 2,780 rooms, a VIP club, 21 restaurants, 28 bars, 2 theatres, a jazz-café, a bowling bar, a conference centre with 27 conference rooms, a 2,200-sq-mt spa -a tourist town stretching over 45,000 square meters dedicated to leisure.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
New boutique hotel in Barrio Norte

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
New boutique hotel in Barrio Norte
Invest Property Group will invest US$10 million in the construction of a boutique hotel in Barrio Norte. The New York based firm announced the beginning of construction of Algodon Mansion, a ten room boutique hotel, which will be inaugurated in 2009. It will have a restaurant, a bar and a spa.

British Airways has daily flights to London
British Airways recently began daily flights from Buenos Aires to London with a layover in Sao Pablo, thus increasing its frequency from 4 to 7 weekly flights as part of its Latin American expansion strategy.

URUGUAY
Pluna begins Asuncion-Montevideo connection
Starting tomorrow, Pluna will operate four weekly frequencies between Montevideo and Asuncion. Flights will last 45 minutes and will operate Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

PARAGUAY
Asuncion, Capital of Culture
The International Bureau of Cultural Capitals named Asuncion the American Capital of Culture 2009. This designation will have a direct result on the inflow of foreign tourists to the main Paraguayan metropolis.

BRAZIL
Cruise Ship with Pele in the Mediterranean
Costa Cruseros will operate the first international cruise ship to carry a Brasilian soccer celebrity, Pele, onboard. Called “Crusero Pelo – Sabor de Brasil” (Pele Cruise Ship – The Flavor of Brazil) and organized in alliance with the Olimpya group, it will travel along the Mediterranean coast from June 28 to July 5, 2009.

CHILE
Viña del Mar to be the venue for the First Bird Festival
The Heritage Unit of the Municipality of Viña del Mar and the Ecotourism Major at the Universidad Andres Bello are preparing for the First Bird Festival in Chile. The event, which will be held from October 30 to November 2, will have venues at Wulff Castle, the head office of the Universidad Andres Bello of Viña del Mar, and the Botanical Garden, and will include talks by well known ornithologists and other professionals in the field, a Bird Watching fair, bird watching routes and guided excursions led by specialists, among other activities.

Chiloe among the most interesting places in the world
The tour guide Lonely Planet named the city of Chiloe as one of the most interesting places in the world for 2009, following the Bay of Fires in Tasmania and Basque Country. Next year Chile will carry out an internationalization campaign in which it will seek to consolidate the province’s image.

BOLIVIA
Tourist hostel inaugurated in Pampalarama
The municipality of Pampalarama inaugurated the city’s ecotourism hostel, located one hour from La Paz. The hostel has ten fully furnished rooms for 20 people, a restaurant, and a lounge.

PERU
Three of the 15 best hotels in South America are Peruvian
In the 21st annual edition of the “Reader’s Choice Awards,” the Hotel Monasterio of Cusco was honored with the number 1 position among the 15 best hotels in South America, and is # 47 in the ranking of the top 100 in the world. The JW Marriot Lima (#9) and the Libertador Palacio del Inca Cusco (#12) are also on the list.

Cusco among the most recommended destinations
Readers of the North American publication Condé Nast Traveler placed the city of Cusco in 6th place among the most recommended destinations to visit in the Americas. First place is held by Buenos Aires, followed by the Canadian cities of Vancouver and Quebec.

Tourist transportation via luxury bus from Puerto Maldonado to Rio Branco
Before the end of the year, thanks to an agreement signed between the Brazilian Ministry of Tourism, PromPeru and Ormeño, a two story luxury bus will begin joining Puerto Maldonado with Rio Branco, thus enabling the transfer of tourists between both locations.

Shelters may be opened at the foot of Cordillera Blanca
The provincial municipality of Huaraz is planning to set up shelters at the foot of the Cordillera Blanca in order to promote tourism development as well as facilitate high mountain climbers’ access to the snow-capped mountains. The shelters will have bedrooms, heating systems, restrooms and restaurants; all of them will have the necessary conditions for climbers to stay the night before climbing to the top of the mountain, and they will also facilitate their reunion with their families.

3,000 year-old temple discovered in Lambayeque
Recently, a team of archaeologists discovered an approximately 3,000 year-old ceremonial temple in the town of Pomalca, in Lambayeque. It is a temple of Collud, an archaeological compound made up of a platform around 150 meters wide by 400 meters long, as well as a series of buildings used for religious purposes. The monument has an impressive structure and building technique, as there are no cracks despite its age.

Probable monolith found on pre-Incan trail in Chachapoyas
A monolith, approximately 1.7 meters tall and presumed to have been constructed by the Chachapoyas due to its features, was found by the Peruvian explorer and hiker Felipe Valera Travesi, known as “El Chaski.” The monolith has engraved images similar to drawings on the mummy wrappings of the Chachapoyas culture. The finding was made in the province of Rodriquez de Mendoza (Amazonas), in the middle of the lush grove on the pre-Inca trail which goes from the city of Chachapoyas to the provinces of Rioja and Moyobamba.

TAM may evaluate beginning flights to Ecuador via Lima
In the short term, TAM Airlines may evaluate beginning flights from Sao Paulo (Brazil) via Lima to Ecuador using 5th freedom rights. If this project is confirmed, TAM would carry out flights with fifth freedom rights, which is the right to commercially transport people or things to and from third party states, but only those flights that begin in the airline’s country of origin.

REP. DOMINICA
Sol Melia to open Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real
Sol Melia Vacation Club (SMVC) will open a new project, The Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real in Punta Cana by the end of the year. It will have 190 two-story cabanas with one or two ultramodern rooms, with exotic Balinese beds, private jacuzzi and direct access to the pool. It will offer spa treatments, fitness programs, a golf course, a variety of gourmet restaurants, a casino and nightlife entertainment, among other facilities.

MEXICO
Airport to change clocks for the end of summer time
As of October 26, the Benito Juarez International Airport in Mexico City will turn all its clocks and arrival and departure screens back one hour due to the conclusion of the summer time schedule. The air terminal urged all passengers to do the same with their watches and/or cell phones.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
New boutique hotel in Barrio Norte

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
New boutique hotel in Barrio Norte
Invest Property Group will invest US$ 10 million in the construction of a boutique hotel in Barrio Norte. The New York based firm announced the beginning of construction of Algodon Mansion, a ten room boutique hotel, which will be inaugurated in 2009. It will have a restaurant, a bar and a spa.

British Airways has daily flights to London
British Airways recently began daily flights from Buenos Aires to London with a layover in Sao Pablo, thus increasing its frequency from 4 to 7 weekly flights as part of its Latin American expansion strategy.

URUGUAY
Pluna begins Asuncion-Montevideo connection
Starting tomorrow, Pluna will operate four weekly frequencies between Montevideo and Asuncion. Flights will last 45 minutes and will operate Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

PARAGUYA
Asuncion, Capital of Culture
The International Bureau of Cultural Capitals named Asuncion the American Capital of Culture 2009. This designation will have a direct result on the inflow of foreign tourists to the main Paraguayan metropolis.

BRAZIL
Cruise Ship with Pele in the Mediterranean
Costa Cruseros will operate the first international cruise ship to carry a Brasilian soccer celebrity, Pele, onboard. Called “Crusero Pelo – Sabor de Brasil” (Pele Cruise Ship – The Flavor of Brasil) and organized in alliance with the Olimpya group, it will travel along the Mediterranean coast from June 28 to July 5, 2009.

CHILE
Viña del Mar to be the venue for the First Bird Festival
The Heritage Unit of the Municipality of Viña del Mar and the Ecotourism Major at the Universidad Andres Bello are preparing for the First Bird Festival in Chile. The event, which will be held from October 30 to November 2, will have venues at Wulff Castle, the head office of the Universidad Andres Bello of Viña del Mar, and the Botanical Garden, and will include talks by well known ornithologists and other professionals in the field, a Bird Watching fair, bird watching routes and guided excursions led by specialists, among other activities.

Chiloe among the most interesting places in the world
The tour guide Lonely Planet named the city of Chiloe as one of the most interesting places in the world for 2009, following the Bay of Fires in Tasmania and Basque Country. Next year Chile will carry out an internationalization campaign in which it will seek to consolidate the province’s image.

BOLIVIA
Tourist hostel inaugurated in Pampalarama
The municipality of Pampalarama inaugurated the city’s ecotourism hostel, located one hour from La Paz. The hostel has ten fully furnished rooms for 20 people, a restaurant, and a lounge.

PERU
Three of the 15 best hotels in South America are Peruvian
In the 21st annual edition of the “Reader’s Choice Awards,” the Hotel Monasterio of Cusco was honored with the number 1 position among the 15 best hotels in South America, and is # 47 in the ranking of the top 100 in the world. The JW Marriot Lima (#9) and the Libertador Palacio del Inca Cusco (#12) are also on the list.

Cusco among the most recommended destinations
Readers of the North American publication Condé Nast Traveler placed the city of Cusco in 6th place among the most recommended destinations to visit in the Americas. First place is held by Buenos Aires, followed by the Canadian cities of Vancouver and Quebec.

Tourist transportation via luxury bus from Puerto Maldonado to Rio Branco
Before the end of the year, thanks to an agreement signed between the Brasilian Ministry of Tourism, PromPeru and Ormeño, a two story luxury bus will begin joining Puerto Maldonado with Rio Branco, thus enabling the transfer of tourists between both locations.

Shelters may be opened at the foot of Cordillera Blanca
The provincial municipality of Huaraz is planning to set up shelters at the foot of the Cordillera Blanca in order to promote tourism development as well as facilitate high mountain climbers’ access to the snowcapped mountains. The shelters will have bedrooms, heating systems, restrooms and restaurants; all of them will have the necessary conditions for climbers to stay the night before climbing to the top of the mountain, and they will also facilitate their reunion with their families.

3,000 year-old temple discovered in Lambayeque
Recently, a team of archaeologists discovered an approximately 3,000 year-old ceremonial temple in the town of Pomalca, in Lambayeque. It is a temple of Collud, an archaeological compound made up of a platform around 150 meters wide by 400 meters long, as well as a series of buildings used for religious purposes. The monument has an impressive structure and building technique, as there are no cracks despite its age.

Probable monolith found on pre-Incan trail in Chachapoyas
A monolith, approximately 1.7 meters tall and presumed to have been constructed by the Chachapoyas due to its features, was found by the Peruvian explorer and hiker Felipe Valera Travesi, known as “El Chaski.” The monolith has engraved images similar to drawings on the mummy wrappings of the Chachapoyas culture. The finding was made in the province of Rodriquez de Mendoza (Amazonas), in the middle of the lush grove on the pre-Inca trail which goes from the city of Chachapoyas to the provinces of Rioja and Moyobamba.

TAM may evaluate beginning flights to Ecuador via Lima
In the short term, TAM Airlines may evaluate beginning flights from Sao Paulo (Brasil) via Lima to Ecuador using 5th freedom rights. If this project is confirmed, TAM would carry out flights with fifth freedom rights, which is the right to commercially transport people or things to and from third party states, but only those flights that begin in the airline’s country of origin.

REP. DOMINICA
Sol Melia to open Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real
Sol Melia Vacation Club (SMVC) will open a new project, The Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real in Punta Cana by the end of the year. It will have 190 two-story cabanas with one or two ultramodern rooms, with exotic Balinese beds, private jacuzzis and direct access to the pool. It will offer spa treatments, fitness programs, a golf course, a variety of gourmet restaurants, a casino and nightlife entertainment, among other facilities.

MEXICO
AAirport to change clocks for the end of summer time
As of October 26, the Benito Juarez International Airport in Mexico City will turn all its clocks and arrival and departure screens back one hour due to the conclusion of the summer time schedule. The air terminal urged all passengers to do the same with their watches and/or cell phones.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

ARGENTINA
Tourists to be charged for entry

SME in Travel? Click here!

ARGENTINA
Tourists to be charged for entry
The National Directorate of Migrations announced that it will charge 116 countries for the entrance visa, including the US and Canada, who apply similar measures to Argentineans. It is estimated that the agency will collect around US$12.5 million the first year that the regulation is in effect. The amount collected will be used to modernize the information systems of the immigration offices, and the exact amount will be proportional to that of the other countries.

One boutique hotel inaugurated per month in Buenos Aires
Boutique hotels are increasing along with the peak of foreign tourism in Buenos Aires; a new hotel of this type is opened per month in the capital. Currently, there are 34 boutique hotels in the city, principally distributed in the neighborhoods of Palermo and San Telmo. For the next two years there are eight more currently projected and under construction.

URUGUAY
Pluna and Tam sign a shared code agreement
Pluna signed a shared code agreement with TAM so that both can take advantage of their respective structures and services, and in this way offer a better product to their passengers. The agreement with TAM assumes the acquisition of passengers that can be channeled through TAM to other destinations in Brazil, the US or Europe, and bringing or distributing TAM passengers from these places to Uruguay and the region.

CHILE
Hilton to build in 5 cities
Hilton Hotels will build in 5 cities in Chile through its franchises. The chosen sites are Santiago, Puerto Mont, Concepcion, Calama and Rancagua. The chain is already looking for investors in Chile to establish its brand through franchises.

BOLIVIA
LAB operating again as of October 15
LAB is preparing to start flying again as of mid-October, after having received US$ 2 million from merchants in Cochabamba. The money, which allowed the company to recover the Commercial Operator Certificate, would have been delivered by the leading Enriqueta Imaca.

PERU
Touristic circuit Valle Sur to be promoted to increase attractions
The touristic circuit Valle Sur (South Valley) of Cusco, which covers around 20 km, will be promoted in order to increase the offer of attractions to visit in this department. To this end, five touristic development plans are being prepared to promote other destinations in the department, which include touristic development in the Espinar region with the Suicutambo canyon, the Calca development plan, which is home to Pisac, the largest artisan market in the country, and the promotion of Paucartambo as a natural balcony from which the sunrise can be viewed. The fourth plan covers the Canchis region, which houses the temple to the god Wiracocha, which is projected to be promoted along with the region’s hot springs. Finally, the fifth plan refers to the region of Quispicanchi, Ollantaytambo, Vilcabamba and the Capac Nan, or Camino Inca project, and will work with the INC.

Pyramid discovered near the archaeological region of Cahuachi
Italian scientists discovered an ancient pyramid near the archaeological region of Cahuachi, in Nazca while analyzing Quickbird satellite images, with which layers of rock and mud were blurred until the base of the pyramid was found. The investigators were able to optimize the quality of the images enough to obtain a detailed view of the base of the pyramid, which is 9,000 m2.

Pre-Inca city discovered in Yaurisque Cusco
An important discovery of a pre-Inca citadel belonging to the Late Intermediate period or the beginning of the Inca stage was made by investigators of the Qhapaq Nan Project of the National Institute of Cusco Culture, in Q’atupata of the Araykalla sector, a farming community in Anyarate, in the district of Yaurisque (Paruro). It is located on the side of the Apu Wanakaure hill, 15 kilometers from the imperial city, on the border of the provinces of Cusco and Paruro, on the Camino Blanca route, which is part of the Andean road system.

HONDURAS
Santa Barbara Airlines suspends flights to Spain
Santa Barbara Airlines temporarily suspended its connections between Spain and Venezuela due to the decrease in traffic resulting from the economic crisis in Spain. The passengers affected by the cancellations will be relocated on flights on other airlines that operate the same routes. The airline operated direct flights between Caracas and the Madrid-Barajas and Tenerife-Norte airports.

Hilton to build hotel in Honduran Caribbean
Hilton announced the construction of a hotel in the Bahia de Tela in the Honduran Caribbean, a region in which a tourism complex is being developed with nation and foreign investment. The Hilton Hotels Corporation project in the Bahia de Tela will be called “Conrad Los Micos” as it is located around the Los Micos lagoon in the Tornasal sector of the Atlantida department.

News Update

Tourism this week in Latin America

PARAGUAY
Pluna and Taca to begin operations in October

SME in Travel? Click here!

PARAGUAY
Pluna and Taca to begin operations in October
Pluna and Taca will carry out operations to Paraguay beginning in October. Pluna will fly between Montevideo and Asuncion 4 times per week as of Wednesday the 29th. In addition to Asuncion, the airline will make daily direct flights to several cities in Argentina and Brazil, as well as Santiago de Chile. Taca’s direct flights to Asuncion from Lima (Peru) will begin on December 15.

BRAZIL
Nautical tourism launches website
Nautical tourism now has digital support after the launching of a website dedicated to this branch of the sector. According to experts, the site will provide tourists with information in four languages (Portuguese, English, Spanish and French) about navies, available moorings, coordinates and charts. www.braziltour.com

New soccer museum
“As marcas do Rei” is the first exhibit housed in the new Soccer Museum which opened its doors yesterday in the Pacaembu stadium in Sao Paulo, headquarters of the Corinthians club. The exhibit brings together pieces of personal heritage of the star in order to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Brasil’s first World Cup (1958). The museum is made up of 17 themed rooms and is located under the stands of the stadium in a space of 6,900 square meters.

ANAC authorizes the unification of Gol and Varig
The National Civil Aviation Agency (ANAC) issued prior authorization for the corporate restructuring of its subsidiaries Gol and Varig, thus allowing them to be joined into one single company. The company announced that the restructuring would allow for the optimization of the operational structure of the subsidiaries in order to make services such as operation integration and an increase in the offer more efficient. The Gol and Varig brands will be kept separate by the new company.

CHILE
Government to regulate hotel services by their stars
The new tourism law being discussed by Congress would establish a set of conditions for hotels according to the number of stars that they have. In this way, 5-star hotels would have to have services such as an internet connection, a heated pool and an international restaurant. This law is a complete step forward for the sector.

BOLIVIA
New Air Comet – Sky Airlines alliance
Air Comet Chile and Sky Airlines signed a commercial and operational agreement. Both companies will work together to strengthen their participation in regional touristic and commercial air transportation.

New airline may begin operating in December
The new state-run airline Boliviana de Aviacion (BoA) will begin operations in December with at least three airplanes, and is planning the arrival of two other aircraft by mid-2009. Next year they plan to have an aeronautical fleet of five airplanes.

Remodeled airport in Cajamarca inaugurated
Remodeling works at the Cajamarca airport were recently inaugurated, consisting in the internal restructuring of the terminal building, and the construction of an entryway guaranteeing safety inside the airport, as well as internal remodeling in order to create better passenger flow and the best signs for the airport.

PERU
Signs in English on touristic streets in Rimac
Soon an aggressive plan for signs in Spanish and English will be carried out in the main tourism points of Rimac. Among the tourists attractions to be given signs are the Paseo de Aguas, Alameda de los Descalzos, Alameda de los Bobos, the Quinta Presa and the viewpoint from San Cristobal hill.

Museums to be built in Sacsayhuaman
Two museums are set to be built soon: the Site Museum and the Popular Art Museum of the American Art Institute, as well as an interpretation center and a tourist services center. The rooms planned for the site museum will display archaeological pieces found in this important historic monument.

Sumaq Machu Picchu Hotel receives 5-stars
The Sumaq Machu Picchu Hotel now has five stars, thus becoming the first 5-star hotel in Machu Picchu.

LAN Peru may fly to Washington as of January 2009
In the last half of January 2009, LAN Peru may begin direct flights between Lima and Washington, in the United States. The frequency will first be operated four times a week.

COLOMBIA
VAT refund to tourists becomes effective
Tourists visiting Colombia can now request a refund of taxes for purchases made (VAT). Products established under the law are: clothing, shoes, compact discs, crafts, liquor, toys and jewelry. To get the refund, tourists must register with the National Directorate of Taxes and Customs, presenting their passport, entry stamp, migration card or any other entry document.

PANAMA
Among the 50 best
In the latest World Economic Forum (WEF) global tourism competitiveness index, Panama moved up 5 positions, placing it among the 50 best countries in the world in the leisure industry. The categories in which the Central American country had the highest rankings were ‘natural resources’ (sixth place), ‘bilateral air service agreements’ (eleventh place), ‘port infrastructure’ (fifteenth place) and ‘hotel prices’ (twenty-fifth place).

EL SALVADOR
Livingston to begin flights to Italy and vice versa
Livingston will begin flights every 8 days between Italy and San Salvador beginning October 31. The airline will cover a route departing from Milan to Havana, and then to San Salvador, and returning with a direct flight to Milan.

MEXICO
Cancun is best beach destination
The World Travel Awards named the Mexican city the Best Beach Destination in Central America and the Caribbean. This is the fourth time that Cancun has been recognized in this category by the same international organization, which selects its winners through votes cast by travel agency representatives from all over the world.

Cruise ships propose the repeal of tourist tax
The Senate Tourism Commission proposed the repeal of the 56 peso Non-Immigrant Fee (DNI) which would be imposed on cruise ship passengers arriving in the country. According to the Federal Fee Act, the charge was to be made effective as of this past July 1. However, the federal Executive issued a decree on June 30, 2008 to postpone the effective date of this fee due to the clear effect it would have on this industry.