Monthly Archives: February 2017

International Travelers See New Look At Atlantas Airport

International travelers flying into and out of Atlantas Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport will now see a brand new look. The Maynard H. Jackson International Terminal, which opened in May 2012, puts a new face on international travel at the worlds busiest airport. The new facility will help meet the demands of increased oversees travel in the coming decades.
The first thing passengers flying out of Atlanta will notice is the new entrance to the airport. Passengers will access the new international terminal from the east side of the airport, off I-75 at Exit 239. The main terminal, which now handles only domestic flights, is still accessed from the original airport entrance off I-85. The international terminal has its own parking on that side of the airport. A free 24 hour shuttle will provide transportation between the two terminals.

Eight airlines will operate international flights out of the new facility. Those airlines are Air Canada, Air France, AirTran/Southwest, British Airways, Delta, KLM Royal Dutch, Korean Air, and Lufthansa. Atlantas airport now has 40 international gates, 12 in the new Concourse F and 28 in the existing Concourse E. Passengers are now able to fly to nearly 80 destinations in 50 countries. Following the completion of their merger, AirTran/Southwest is expected to add new routes to the Caribbean and Mexico. Other airlines are expected to add additional routes to Asia and South America.

The new terminal has an attractive design, with a sweeping roofline and soaring glass windows. The facility is LEED-certified. Passengers will notice several spectacular pieces of art, as the city requires that 1% of capital construction costs be dedicated to public art. Travelers will have a variety of dining options in the new international terminal. Choices will include sit down restaurants, a tapas bar, a gourmet market, quick food options, bars, and a Starbucks. Retail shopping outlets will include Clutch, Brookstone, The Body Shop, Touch Table, Simply Books, and Tommy Hilfiger. Business services, personal services, and Wi-Fi are also available.

There are separate security checkpoints for arriving and departing passengers. Atlanta bound travelers who are returning home will find they are no longer required to re-check their bags after clearing customs and immigration. They will be able to keep their bags and exit the airport.
Some ground transportation options, including taxis, will be available at the new terminal. A shuttle will take travelers to the rental car center. Hotel and offsite parking shuttles will pick up and drop off at the international terminal. Travelers taking the MARTA transportation will need to take the shuttle to the main terminal.

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Redefining Hotel Entertainment

With the introduction of iPad, Android mobile phones, iPhones, and the like, most hotel guests are no longer interested in the pay per view entertainment offered by hotels. According to a study done by Smith Travel Research, there was a decline of 26 percent in purchase of movies offered in hotel rooms.
Aside from being expensive, guests no longer see the value of these services because they can easily watch movies and their favorite TV shows on their iPad from a website like www.netflix.com for a lot cheaper.

Some hotels have already removed their adult content since guests who are willing to pay for them are getting fewer and fewer. One hotel chain that did this is Marriott.

How To Turn This Around

So what will hotel guests find value in? These gadgets need plain and simple Wi-Fi. Most hotels charge an arm and a leg for internet. If it were reasonable, most guests would avail of this but hotels seem to not want anyone using them by charging exorbitant prices. This is why most guests prefer it when it is included to their room rate.

Creative Entertainment

New York’s The Plaza Hotel has introduced the use of iPad for their guests to do a myriad of things. Controls that used to be in a wall panel are now controllable through the iPad. Moreover, guests can order room service or make restaurant reservations through the hotel-given iPad. Guests can also access pre-programmed guides to the city which is a plus for travelling tourists. And more importantly, guests can do their internet surfing for free on this iPad.

In Royalton, rooms come up the iPad too that has a virtual concierge application that guests can use to search for the best Japanese restaurant in town, Broadway shows, best clubs and anything else that they can possibly need.

But this creative use of the iPad is pretty much limited to The Plaza, Royalton and a few others. Almost all hotels still offer the same bland TV and overpriced movie programs. It is quite surprising actually that in surveys, TV is not on the list of customer requirements for booking a room. This just means that guests do not see the entertainment value that hotels are offering now through this medium. It is time to move on and make the most of new technologies to introduce new value-added services to the 21st century hotel guests. Learn about the current trends in the industry. Another innovation now being utilized by many hotel owners and managers is the hotel management software.

Learn what industry experts have to say with your current hotel dilemma, and what they think are your strengths and competitive advantages. Get to know them at Frontdesk Anywhere.

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Atlantas Candlelight Holiday Home Tours

Many beautiful homes in the Atlanta area are decked out for the holidays and featured on candlelight tours. Many tours have become favorite holiday traditions and are fundraisers for local charities. Here are the highlights of candlelight tours scheduled in historic Grant Park and in the cities of Marietta, Roswell, and Decatur.

The 30th Annual Decatur Holiday Candlelight Tour of Homes is scheduled for November 30 and December 1, from 5:30-9:30pm each evening. The 2012 tour features seven homes that are beautifully decorated for the holidays. Some homes have been carefully renovated and others are newer builds. Rosehill estate and its lovely gardens are included on this years tour. Tickets are $20 in advance when purchased online or in several locations around Decatur. Tickets are $25 the weekend of the tour. Proceeds benefit four youth and educational organizations. Parking at tour sites is limited. It is recommended that visitors use the free shuttle that can be boarded at the Courtyard by Marriott in downtown Decatur. The shuttle stops at all tour sites.

The Marietta Pilgrimage holiday tour is scheduled for December 1-2. Six private homes in the Church-Cherokee Street Historic District will be featured, as well as several churches and other historic buildings. Day Tour tickets are $20. The $15 Candlelight Tour includes admission to three of the homes. There is also a $25 combination ticket. Tickets may be purchased at tour homes and at the Marietta Visitors Bureau. Shuttle service is available during the day.

Roswell, Georgias Southern Trilogy Candlelight Tour will be held on December 8 from 5-9pm. Visitors will be greeted by costumed docents at the citys three historic home museums. The Greek Revival style Barrington Hall was built in 1830 by a Rowell founder. The 1839 Bulloch Hall was the childhood home of President Theodore Roosevelts mother, Mittie Bulloch. The Archibald Smith Plantation was built in the 1830s by a well-to-do cotton farmer. Candlelight Tour tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children. All three historic homes have a variety of other activities scheduled throughout the holiday season.

The Grant Park Candlelight Tour of Homes will take place December 8-9 from 6-10pm. The tour benefits three local non-profits in this historic neighborhood east of downtown Atlanta. Eight homes are included on the tour including the historic 1868 Burns Mansion and the 1856 L.P. Grant Mansion, now the headquarters of the Atlanta Preservation Center. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 the weekend of the tour. The tour begins at St. Paul United Methodist Church, where visitors will find childrens activities and an artist market.

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Selecting From Channel Islands Surfboards

People who are learning to surf often ask about the kind of surfboard that is best to learn on. The most common answer that you get to this question is that bigger and longer surfboards make learning easier. But instead of getting a surfboard that is as long as ten feet, it is recommended that you buy an eight foot funboard whether it is a generic brand or a high performance brand like, Channel Islands Surfboards or JS surfboards, that you choose.

You must also consider how long you will be using the surfboard. You wont be a beginner for ever so you cannot be buying a surfboard that is going to be good for you for just a few months. As someone who is learning to surf, a wide and stable surfboard will help you stand up with ease. And since longer surfboards make it easier for you to catch waves, you will prefer a longer one. But then a longer surfboard whether it is made by JS surfboards or Channel Islands Surfboards, also makes it difficult to turn and it wont be very long before you start practicing to turn even if you are a beginner. A funboard surfboard makes turning a lot easier and it will permit you to ride the same board for much longer as you get better at surfing.

Another thing that one should consider before selecting from Channel Islands Surfboards or the JS surfboards is larger surfboards are more difficult to paddle out on. For beginners in surfing, paddling out into the waves is not easy and a larger board will tend to get pushed around even more by the waves. Beginner surfers would do well to paddle into the waves by making use of a smaller board. Funboards come in a more high performance shape than longboards, and while it may be at the most just one foot shorter, there could be one third less foam used in the board giving it less pushback from the waves.

No matter whether you choose JS surfboards or Channel Islands Surfboards another thing that you need to keep in mind is how easy your chosen surfboard is to handle. A lot of new surfers dont think of where they will keep their surfboard once they are out of the water. You need a place to store it and if yours is a ten foot surfboard and you have a nine foot ceiling at home, storing it will put you in a dilemma. Also, carrying a 10 foot surfboard on the top of your car can be a pain unless you have a strong longboard rack or pickup truck. An eight foot surfboard is a lot easier to handle and maneuver. Other things that play a role in the selection of a surfboard are your body weight and the kind of surf and waves you will be surfing.

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Can Holiday Allowance Affect Employee Motivation

Here in Britain we are slowly returning to work after the extended weekend that comes around every August. The Bank Holiday gives everyone a chance to enjoy a bit of extra time in the summer sun which should get us all ready for the build up to the next break we’ll get at Christmas. In Britain we face the very unusual situation of offices being either depleted or completely empty for much of August and the week over Christmas, but do our holidays make us more motivated at work?

An interesting article on the BBC website explores the freedoms we have with our holidays in Britain compared with the much shorter, and in some cases non existent holidays employees are granted in the USA. It would appear from reading the article that the US is the only country out of the top 21 richest in the world not to impose a legal mandate on employers granting time off. But what does this do to employee motivation? Do us Brits find ourselves more motivated as a result of our holidays or does the time they take up interfere with overall productivity?

There will be many views from many quarters arguing the merits or otherwise of employee holidays, but their effect on motivation should not be ignored. The idea of holiday allowance being awarded on merit or as a result of long service is one that may appeal to some companies as a way of offering an incentive to workers. But rather than motivating junior employees, could this approach just lead to staff resenting those co-workers who have holiday allowances that they don’t?

Burnout is also a factor in employees’ holiday as a well deserved break from work can ease stress levels and allow staff time away from the stresses and strains of work. Although work levels may be hit while employees take holiday, there is surely an argument that productivity levels out when compared with stressed, tired and unmotivated staff who have not been granted holiday.

There is no doubt that employees in Britain are lucky when it comes to their holiday allowance, and changes in the law over the years have made it a much fairer working environment for employees with rights and privileges that have never been seen before.

Employee motivation is now key, with bosses realising that they will get more out of a happy and rewarded workforce than by cracking the whip. Indeed, employee motivation is now big business, with strategies and award schemes being established to offer employees incentives and rewards for improving their work.

This British approach to working practices has done well to survive given the increasing use of American corporate motivation practices by UK firms. It would appear that whatever practices are adopted over here, there’s nothing that will ever stop us from enjoying our holiday.

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Cape Cod Vacation Rentals A Perfect Getaway

You can find Cape Cod in Massachusetts eastern area. Cape Cod is about 60 miles south of Boston, Massachusetts. It was formed when the last glaciers to visit the region melted about 12,000 years ago leaving a large lake. Cape Cod is one of the largest barrier islands in the entire world and has been a favored vacation getaway by a lot of people. It has been popular for years due to a lot of things Cape Cod can offer. Surely, you will never get bored while visiting the place. There you will be fascinated so many independently owned shops, the festivals, the bicycle riding opportunities in wooded paths and a little gem of an island.

It is in fact a great decision choosing Cape Cod as a vacation destination. It is also vital to select what part of the Cape to visit and where to stay. The Upper Cape is close to the bridges, the Mid-Cape and the Lower or Outer Cape. The Lower Cape is farther North than the Upper Cape. The place is a perfect destination for a memorable and affordable family vacation. Cape Cod is also known for its historical heritage, scenic beauty and cultural diversity.

Spending holiday with loved ones and friends is a great and memorable experience. For sure, everyone is dreaming for a more enjoyable and relaxing vacation even just once in a year. This is the time where you spend quality time with family away from stresses of work and everyday hassles. Now if you are looking for a place to spend your holiday, Cape Cod is one of the best places you can have. Now the location is ready and your next concern is the accommodation. Well, there are no worries about this since you can find a lot of Cape Cod vacation rentals where you can stay. It is so exciting spending time relaxing and visiting on the beaches at Cape Cod. As much as you enjoy the vacation at Cape Cod, more fun is experience by your kids. Whale watching is also one of the most exciting things you may experience at Cape Cod.

Cape Cod vacation rentals are a home away from home and there are so many options that suit to your needs. Some rental homes appear like full-size home, others are like traditional beach house, quaint cottage and modern condominium. A lot of tourists and vacationers choose to stay at vacation rentals than hotels because of the so many advantages they get from vacation rentals. Cape Cod vacation rentals bring comfort and freedom as multiple bedrooms are available for you and your family. Complete amenities like fully equipped kitchen, living room, dining rooms, bedrooms and more are there.

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African Safari Vacations

Africa is a continent with diverse and rich resources, and to explore such a vast region, a traveler can undertake either a relaxing campfire vacation or an adventure wildlife tour. Safari vacations are not just restricted to game reserves; in fact, they offer a complete package where one can relax in the slower and quieter environment of the wilderness, far from the hectic world of the city life.

Although game viewing is the core of safari vacations, you may also indulge in diverse activities such as ballooning, birding, canoeing or interacting with the local peoples. Many safari lodges also offer guided nature walks that provide interesting information about indigenous plant species found in Africa. Safari lodges, which are also known as ‘bush hotels’, offer a quintessential African experience, and most travelers would love to stay in such a lodge during their African vacation. Most of these safari lodges offer amenities at par with urban hotels, and include all meals and activities.

While on an African safari vacation, one should be updated about the weather conditions of the region. Generally, national parks are best visited in dry seasons when the roads are easier to negotiate and the wildlife tends to congregate at waterholes. However, some parks, like Serengeti and Kalahari, are at their best during the rainy months, when migrating herds trail over grasslands that are completely waterless in the dry season.

Some of the popular safari vacation packages are Kilimanjaro Climbs, Rail Tours of Africa, Family Safaris, Walking Safaris, Escorted Holidays, Flora & Garden Holidays, Spa Destinations, Golf Safaris, Fly-In & Transfer and Adventure Safaris. A traveler might choose any of the above-mentioned safaris; however, in order to spot wildlife during your tour, it is advisable to book a safari that includes a ranger and tracker in the deal.

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Premier Destination for Golf Vacations

Many people choose to take vacations to play golf. There are many popular places to go. The south of Portugal and Spain appeal to many Europeans because of a warmer climate. Scotland appeals to some, as the “birthplace” of golf, but it is also home to some of the World’s finest links golf courses. But if you look at the professional game, many of the world’s top players live in Florida, or have a home there, so that they can play and hone their game on some of the finest courses in the World.

Consider a list of some of the players who have a home in Florida: Tiger Woods, Vijay Singh, Lee Westwood, Luke Donald, Ernie Els, Ian Poulter. The list goes on. So what draws these people to Florida.

Climate: Florida has very mild winters, which means that this is a year round golf destination. It can get a little hot and humid, but golf can be played during the cooler times of day when this is the case.

Outstanding golf courses: This is of course the real reason you are reading this article and it is definitely true. Florida was formally a very large swamp. Over centuries the water has receded, but it has left behind lots of lakes and ponds, which means that many natural features are left behind with which to create golf courses. Also, as Florida is largely a flat state, golf architects have sought to make courses interesting by creating some fascinating undulations. The greens are also usually maintained to an exceptional standard and play very fast due to the hot weather.

All of this leads to some stunningly memorable holes. Think of the iconic 17th hole at TPC Sawgrass with its beautiful island green. Or think of Bay Hill, or in fact any one of the 50 or so championship golf courses situated close to the Walt Disney World Resort in central Florida. OK, I know that TPC Sawgrass is a bit further north and lots of people would not be able to afford to play there. Nevertheless, it conjures up in the mind the types of holes and golf architecture available. Disney itself has a number of championship golf courses. Many places have tee times which are cheaper if you are willing to play in the heat of the day. But this can easily be borne if you are driving a cart around as you will be offered some shade from the roof whilst in the cart and the breeze while the cart is in motion can also be cooling. It is now easier than ever to pack your clubs and take them with you on planes. So what is to stop you heading to Florida and seeing one of the world’s premier golf destinations.

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Your Very Own Perfect Tea Party Holiday Guide

The holiday season is already here and it’s time to swing to the rhythm of the enchanting and warm atmosphere. So, if you want to create a magical moment this year that would last throughout your life, let’s take a look at what you can do.

You must have tried out so many things to make your holiday memorable, but this time try something new. Have you ever tried a holiday tea party? Not yet? Then try it out! It is much more fun and you can enjoy it so much with your friends and family.

You can host a tea party in your home if you want and invite your friends over. For your holiday tea party theme, consider the guests’ preferences. Do they love casual, formal, down-home, natural or organic tea?

Make the tea party theme more elegant by simplifying the dcor. Decorate the whole ambiance with holiday accents ornaments and ribbons. You can create a tea wreath to add up to the whole fun. Check online for various tips on how you can make tea wreaths using tea sampler packs. The sampler tea packs are easy to get and you can order it online.

A special teapot can take the center stage at your tea party. If you are looking for a traditional teapot, the Yixing clay teapot, Bodum glass teapot or the Tetsubin Cast Iron teapot would be a great choice. The WholeLeaf porcelain teapot with infuser and lid from Art of Tea comes with different colors and can greatly enhance the whole ambiance of your party. If you want to use a glass accent, try out the hand blown teapot, which will add an elegant touch to the whole affair.

For the tea menu, there is a huge collection of teas which you can try out. The pumpkin pie herbal tea is a must for any holiday tea party. The flavor and aroma of baked pumpkin pie with holiday spice is an amazing way to warm up a frosty winter chill. Other herbal teas you can try out are Ginger Ginseng, Rooibos Chai, White Guava Ginger, Ginger Matcha and lot more.

To extend the holiday festivities, you can give away small packages of herbal tea samplers as gifts. If you are looking for exotic tea gifts, you can visit Art of Tea and check out their huge list of tea gifts. They have such amazing tea gifts that anyone would be overjoyed to get them!

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Top 5 Turkish Beaches Revealed

Turkey continues to remain a firm favourite for UK holidaymakers looking for guaranteed summer sunshine and value-for-money. With four airports (Izmir, Dalman, Bodrum and Antalya) serving the coastal areas to the south of the country, there are plenty of resorts to choose from – but which really offer the best beaches? The travel experts at Hays Travel have compiled a list of their top five Turkish beaches.

1)The Blue Lagoon, OluDeniz, near Fethiye
This is the most photographed beach in Turkey and one of the most photographed in the world! A protected national park, this clear, peaceful lagoon is cut off from the sea by a long sandbank. Home to the endangered Loggerhead Turtle, the lagoon is surrounded by fine white shingle and shady pine forests. Hire a pedalo and see if you can get up close to a turtle, or make a real entrance by paragliding in from the top of one of the nearby rugged mountains. Stunning scenery, unique wildlife, a real must-see spot.

2)Olympos, near Alanya
Oludeniz is stunning, but its popularity means it can get very crowded. For something a little less busy, head to Olympos. Secluded and small, it’s more popular with backpackers than the masses. Nearby Roman ruins give it its name. Go back to basics and stay at the local treehouse camp.

3)Patara, near Fethiye
This huge beach is the birthplace of Nicholas, who went on to be immortalised in legend as Father Christmas. Soft and spotless, it’s a great place for building sandcastles and playing but does lack shade in the scorching high season.

4)Turgutreis, near Bodrum
Ever-popular Bodrum can get crowded and isn’t very special, luckily you don’t have to head too far out of town to reach Turgutreis. Gnetly shelving and chilled-out, this is a great spot for families. The breze also makes this beach popular with windsurfers.

5)Konyaalti Beach, near Antalya
Clear sea and pristine shingle have won this stretch an award for cleanliness. Arrive by dolmus or stay in the hip minimalist Hillside Su hotel, which overlooks this beautiful beach.

“These are only a selection of the brilliant beaches on offer in Turkey,” says Emily at Hays Travel. “Go and visit, explore, hire a car and find your own. There are lots of little islands and hidden coves around the coast – for a real holiday with a difference, why not cruise on board a gulet (traditional Turkish yacht.) If you prefer luxury, choose a first-class beach front hotel and take just a few steps from your room to the shore. There’s a beach to suit everyone in Turkey!”

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