Flybe receives ‘Airline of the Year’ Award, launches extra seats for summer 2014

Flybe, Europe’s largest independent regional airline and the biggest operator at George Best Belfast City Airport, has been named ‘Best UK Domestic Airline’ at the Northern Ireland Travel and Tourism Awards.

This is the second consecutive year that Flybe has won the award ahead of BA, Aer Lingus, easyjet and Jet2. The award was based on independent voting by travel agents throughout Northern Ireland.

Commenting on the award, Ken Harrower, Flybe regional sales manager, said: ‘We are delighted to have won this Award, made all the more special because it is determined by our peers across the local travel and tourism industry.

‘It is especially significant that we have won in this particular year which not only marks our 30th anniversary operating out of George Best Belfast City Airport, but also sees us take major strides towards the next three decades. In reference to these, the personal touch remains a key element as it remains a critical part of our commitments to customer satisfaction and congratulations must go to all of the staff at Belfast who made winning this award possible.’

Over 400 representatives of the travel and tourism industry in Northern Ireland attended the ceremony at the Slieve Donard Hotel in Newcastle.

In other Flybe news, the Stornoway Gazette reported that Flybe’s franchise carrier, Loganair, would offer 1,000 extra seats for summer 2014, operating extra rotations between Stornoway and Glasgow every Saturday and Sunday.

Phil Preston, Loganair’s chief operating officer, said: ‘We are very happy to be launching our summer 2014 schedule, and to be adding weekend frequency on our Stornoway to Glasgow route.

‘Scotland will be in focus in 2014 with the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, Homecoming and the Ryder Cup. We hope our network of routes will encourage tourists to extend their visit to include a trip to the Western Isles as well as giving island residents the opportunity to fly south and enjoy the sporting events in Glasgow.’

Services until September 9 are available for booking, with subsequent flights being made available in early December.

 

Great Wolf Lodge Niagara Falls wins award

Great Wolf Lodge Niagara Falls has received an award from the Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council (CTHRC).

The award was issued for Excellence in Human Resources. The lodge was also a finalist for the Air Canada Business of the Year Award. The Tourism Industry Association of Canada (TIAC) hosted the annual 2012 Canadian Tourism Awards, and The Toronto Star and VISA Canada presented them.

The Canadian Tourism Awards are presented annually by the TIAC to recognise success, leadership and innovation in Canada’s tourism industry. Organisers award people, places, organisations and events that have contributed to furthering tourism in the nation, and which offer a superior tourism experience to travellers in Canada.

Keith Simmonds, general manager of Great Wolf Lodge, said, ‘This is a tremendous honour for our Lodge and is no small feat. Our HR practices define our culture and the success of our business. This recognition reflects the passion and commitment of a large team of people.’

In addition to the recent award, the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO) had acknowledged the Lodge with the TIAO Employee Attraction & Retention award in October.

The lodge offers many attractions and amenities, such as indoor and outdoor water parks, themed restaurants, a spa for adults, a separate ‘Scooops Spa’ for kids, a ‘Cub Club’ activity centre and a children’s craft room. In addition, a MagiQuest live adventure game, an arcade, fitness centre and outdoor mini golf are also star attractions at the resort.

It is located at 3950 Victoria Avenue.

 

Tripadvisor Announces 2012 Travellers’ Choice Restaurants

TripAdvisor, a company that providees an online travel community for collating user-generated travel information, has announced its 2012 Travellers’ Choice Restaurants awards.

The London restaurants that have achieved inclusion to the list are:

1. Le Gavroche

2. Chez Bruce

3. Barrafina,

4. La Trompette

5. The Ledbury

6. Hawksmoor Seven Dials

7. Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester

8. Goodman

9. Moro

10. Petrus

The Travellers’ Choice awards for Overall Favourite Restaurants Worldwide, includes:

1. Le Bernardin, New York City

2. Restaurant Gary Danko, San Francisco

3. Le Cirque (Bellagio), Las Vegas

4. Girl & The Goat, Chicago

5. Le Gavroche, London

6. La Pergola, Rome

7. Ciya Sofrasi, Istanbul

8. Guy Savoy, Paris

9. Europea, Montreal

10. Toulouse Petit, Seattle

Around 576 restaurants worldwide have been included in the list, which includes travellers’ favourite dining venues in the US, Europe and other travel destinations around the globe.

Emma Shaw, the spokesperson for TripAdvisor, said, ‘As the UK’s capital city, London is visited by millions of tourists every year, but in the past it has sometimes been derided for its culinary offerings, But now millions of TripAdvisor users have spoken, proving that London’s restaurants are not only world-class, but enjoyed by those that really matter, diners.’

We’re thrilled to highlight some of the TripAdvisor community’s favourite restaurants We found that travellers’ favourite restaurants range from well-known, casual chains to upscale fine dining options – the common thread for these award-winners being a consistently remarkable dining experience with outstanding service and quality.’

Bournemouth is UK’s best beach destination

The winners of TripAdvisors second annual Travellers’ Choice Beach Destinations awards have been revealed. Bournemouth was crowned the UK’s best beach destination and was the only UK finalist in the European top 10, where it took fourth place, beating every beach destination in Italy, France, Portugal and more.

Jersey’s St. Brelades was named the UK’s second best beach destination while Devon’s Woolacombe took third place.

“These awards recognise the UK’s and Europe’s best beach destinations, according to those that really matter – travellers themselves,” commented Emma Shaw, TripAdvisor spokesperson. “Bournemouth has long been a popular seaside resort and recent investment in the area has clearly paid off – not only has it been named the UK’s best beach destination, up from third place last year, but it’s also ranked ahead of almost every Mediterranean beach destination.”

Bournemouth takes top spot

Following its third-place finish in 2011, Bournemouth rose through the ranks to be named the UK’s best beach destination this year.  It was joined by two other Dorset destinations: Weymouth in 8th place and Swanage in 9th.

Bournemouth is currently undergoing significant improvement with some £11 million recently injected into the seafront at Boscombe. The area has seen the addition of new designer beach ‘pods’, water sports academies, and new bars and restaurants sitting alongside a newly refurbished pier.

Tobias Ellwood, MP for Bournemouth East, commented: “Those that live in Bournemouth have long known what a great town it is, but for it to be recognised by TripAdvisor’s travellers as the UK’s best beach destination really is a tremendous honour for the area.”

Cornwall claims almost half of the top ten spots

Home to three of last year’s winners, Cornwall triumphed again claiming four of the UK’s ten best beach destinations: St. Ives in 4th place, Newquay in 6th, Bude in 7th and Padstow in 10th.

Malcolm Bell, head of tourism, VisitCornwall, commented: “Cornwall is an iconic destination where our fantastic beaches are one, if not the major draw, be that to swim, surf, walk on or dine beside.”

Award winners were determined based on the most highly rated beach destinations by travellers in TripAdvisor reviews. Unlike any other honours, TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice winners are based on millions of valuable reviews and opinions from travellers around the world.

For the complete 2012 Travellers’ Choice Beach Destinations winners and more reviews, opinions and candid holiday photographs, go tohttp://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/TravelersChoice-Beaches.