AAA says no to SA bed tax

first_imgSpeaking on behalf of the industry, the Accommodation Association of Australia (AAA) said the introduction of new fees on hotels and other accommodation businesses in the state is “disturbing”, particularly given that it is likely “to hurt tourism, not benefit it”. The latest ABS statistics found SA’s hospitality industry is already experiencing a decline in business, with occupancy dropping three percent compared to last year. He said the Association will oppose the bed tax, and has called parties in the next state election “abandon any thoughts of pursuing a bed tax”. Tourism businesses oppose a bedtax on hospitality industry. “Operators of accommodation businesses have in the past and will continue to voluntarily contribute funds towards cooperative marketing efforts, but the industry does not support mandatory payments in the form of a bed tax,” he added. A bed tax will make things tougher in an already struggling industry, according to tourism leaders in South Australia. “A bed tax would make things even tougher for accommodation businesses and with our industry being a major employer in SA, it would result in significant job losses,” AAA chief executive Richard Munro explained.last_img read more

A superior win for Capri by Fraser Brisbane

first_imgSource = Capri by Fraser Brisbane A superior win for Capri by Fraser, BrisbaneJust five months after opening, Capri by Fraser, Brisbane has scooped the Best Superior Accommodation category at the Queensland Hotels Association Awards for Excellence.The stylish property took out the award from a competitive field of newly opened hotels in Brisbane who were also in the running including Four Points by Sheraton, Next Hotel, Tryp by Wyndham, The Glen Hotel and Suites and The Calamvale Hotel.Over 1,000 esteemed industry guests attended the QHA event, an annual celebration of Queensland’s hotel industry achievements. The 2015 awards saw a record number of nominations from small and large hotels and over 43 honours for Queensland’s best pubs, hotels and hoteliers were awarded on the night. The industry awards are judged by a panel of industry heavy weights, who visit the entrants anonymously.Capri by Fraser, Brisbane opened in April this year in the heart of the Brisbane CBD. This opening marked the first Frasers Hospitality property to open in Queensland. At the same time it is the first ‘Capri by Fraser’ property in Australia, the Frasers Hospitality group’s tech-intuitive, design-led hotel brand.“This award is a fantastic achievement for us and acknowledges the team’s hard work this year in opening our first Capri in Australia and Fraser’s first hotel in Queensland.” says Mariusz Tymosiewicz, General Manager of Capri by Fraser, Brisbane.Capri by Fraser, Brisbane is set in an enviable location within walking distance to Queen Street Mall shopping, Eagle Street Pier riverside dining, City Botanical Gardens and Treasury Casino.Each design-led suite at Capri by Fraser, Brisbane features free and fast WiFi, king size bed, kitchenette with Nespresso coffee machine and microwave, ergonomically designed desk and Herman Miller work chairs, Malin & Goetz bath amenities, an iPod docking station and 48” LED TV.The rooms are complemented by the hotel’s extensive leisure facilities. Guests have access to the 24/7 fully equipped gym, indoor heated swimming pool, his and hers steam room and sauna, and 24/7 Spin and Play launderette where guests are fully entertained with foosball or Xbox Kinect between spin cycles.All hotel dining has been carefully created in partnership with Chef Pete Evans including the 24/7 in room dining menu, conference and events catering, and the hotel’s signature restaurant, Asana by Pete Evans, The fresh and delicious menus showcase the best seasonal QLD produce.last_img read more

New South Wales shines at Australian Tourism Awards

first_imgNew South Wales shines at Australian Tourism AwardsNSW has once again shown it is home to some of the country’s best tourism products and experiences after it was awarded in 12 categories at the Australian Tourism Awards held on Friday evening.Minister for Trade, Tourism and Major Events Stuart Ayres welcomed the accolades and said that this achievement would shine a light on NSW destinations and provide visitors with another compelling reason to discover what’s on offer.“I am delighted NSW received four Gold Awards and three Silver Awards, an achievement to be celebrated,” Mr Ayres said.“In the year ended September 2015, the tourism industry contributed more than $24.0 billion in international and domestic overnight visitor expenditure to the NSW economy, up 7.8 per cent compared to a year ago.“Through our tourism and major events agency Destination NSW, the NSW Government is committed to growing tourism across Regional NSW and these phenomenal figures demonstrate the significance of recognising the thousands of individuals who have worked tirelessly to ensure that NSW remains the number one tourism and events State.”Destination NSW Chief Executive Officer, Sandra Chipchase said the results showed the range and quality of experiences on offer for visitors in NSW.“Our State has so much to offer visitors of all ages, from spectacular scenery to world class dining and accommodation. I congratulate all our NSW finalists and Award winners, and encourage everyone to get out and experience everything NSW has to offer.” Australian Tourism AwardsSource = Destination NSWlast_img read more

PO Cruises launches first Flagship College Master Class

first_imgP&O Cruises launches first Flagship College Master ClassP&O Cruises launches first Flagship College Master ClassP&O Cruises has released its first Flagship College Master Class, giving travel agents an easy way to boost their cruise knowledge.Taking only one hour to complete, the Master Class will give agents deeper insights into P&O’s product – as well as 10 Cruise Lines International Australasia (CLIA) Accreditation Points.The course is available in a mobile-friendly format for easy access, with agents having the option to start and stop at any time, making it even easier to complete.The Master Class is the second course to be made available through Flagship College, launched last June as part of the new P&O agent website to 1500 agents have already completed the first Extra Credit course which was released in November last year.P&O Cruises Director of Sales Ryan Taibel said many agents had been eagerly awaiting the first Master Class.“We’ve had such incredible interest in Flagship College so far, and we think the first Master Class will really cement its place as the industry leading consultant training tool,” Mr Taibel said.Agents enrolled in the Flagship Achievers program need to complete the Master Class by November 30, 2017 to be eligible for a Flagship Bonus of up to $500 a year.For more information on the Master Class, visit = P&O Cruiseslast_img read more

Chinese hotel market shows steady growth despite political turmoil

first_imgChinese hotel market shows steady growth despite political turmoil Tourico Holidays, the world’s fastest growing wholesale travel brokerage company, today shared data indicating that inbound hotel room bookings to China have increased by 106 percent over the last year.  Tourico’s data also shows that the Chinese continue to be among the biggest travelers in the world, as outbound hotel bookings from the market grew by 70 percent year-over-year in the first 17 weeks of 2017.The Republic of Korea (+68% YOY in bookings), the United States (+10% YOY) and the United Kingdom (+40% YOY) continue to be among the strongest source markets to China, while emerging markets such as India (+160% YOY), the UAE (+212% YOY), and Brazil (+90% YOY) are helping diversify the demand.“Regional political turmoil, such as the nuclear crisis in the Korean Peninsula, make the inbound China market more unpredictable this year – as Korea was the number one inbound source country for China last year – but, so far, Chinese travel business remains very strong,” said Hillary Wang, the Regional Director of Product Development in North Asia for Tourico Holidays.  “In fact, Tourico is predicting it will double its overall Chinese business in 2017, as both the larger markets and emerging markets continue to demand product in China.”Tourico currently has four local offices in the region, including in Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen, and Hong Kong – stationing over 55 employees to locally support Chinese supplier partners and distribution clients.  In the past year, the Tourico team in China has worked to add a number of new clients, including Alitrip, Tongcheng International, Mioji Travel, eLong, Tuniu, Mogutrip, Mafengwo, Lushu Technology, CNBooking, and Caissa.“Our local Chinese supplier partners and distribution clients are both experiencing a strong demand in 2017 and we’ve ensured that a dedicated support team is in place to help them push their businesses to the next level,” said Wang.Tourico Holidays will be exhibiting its comprehensive lineup of travel offerings – including hotels, cruises, activities and transfers, car rentals, and vacation homes – at ITB China from May 10 to the 12. Tourico HolidaysSource = Tourico Holidayslast_img read more

Club Med is now recruiting ski snowboard instructors

first_imgClub Med is now recruiting ski & snowboard instructorsClub Med is now recruiting ski & snowboard instructorsLeading premium all-inclusive resort provider Club Med is calling all skilled and personality-plus snow lovers with a passion for skiing or snowboarding, a sense of adventure, and love for travel, to join their international team of instructors in Japan for winter 2019.From snowboarding down perfect powder slopes, to being rewarded with the smiles of guests as they develop their skills, to making friends with people from around the world, eating delicious food, and crashing in comfortable accommodation; it’s all in a days work as a Club Med snow instructor.For over 60 years, Club Med has been the worldwide leader in all-inclusive, upscale and multicultural holidays with 70+ resorts in the most beautiful destinations across the world. The Club Med staff, otherwise known as G.Os (“Gentil Organisateur” or Gracious Organiser), are ambassadors of the Club Med spirit and are central to creating happy clients in the resorts.“Knowing that during the day I will have an opportunity to ski the lightest driest powder in the world matched with the excellent terrain and tree runs to go with it and having some really cool guests and staff to share it with makes me want to wake up every morning as a G.O,” says William, ski instructor at Club Med Sahoro, Japan.Recognised as one of the best travel destinations in Asia, Hokkaido in Japan promises blankets of powder snow, breath-taking landscapes, and traditional Japanese charm. Club Med is recruiting ski and snowboard instructors for their two Japan resorts:Club Med Sahoro Hokkaido, Japan – renovated for this season!Offering a unique setting to enjoy hassle-free skiing or trekking on powder snow without the crowds, recharge your body and soul in the outdoor Canadian bath with magnificent views or plunge into Japanese culinary delights with seafood Nabe hot-pot tasting; a true immersion into authentic Japanese culture and heritage.Club Med Tomamu Hokkaido, Japan – newly opened (Dec, ’17)!Hit the slopes at Hokkaido’s trendiest new ski resort, and get ready to ride a different wave. Sprawled over 145 hectares of Tomamu Mountain, Club Med introduces a thrilling snow escape where powdery perfect slopes are just waiting for discovery. Fresh seafood, premium Wagyu beef, and award-winning locally brewed spirits make this more than a destination to discover, but a culinary journey to enjoy. From skiing and snow trekking, to riding Japan’s largest indoor wave pool at the nearby Mina Mina Beach, guests seeking winter excitement have come to the right place.To apply, applicants must hold:An Australian, New Zealand or International Ski Instructor QualificationBe eligible for a Japanese WHV or for Sponsorship (details provided upon application)Have an open mind, passion for people, sincere smile, engaging personality and high level ofmaturityThe Club Med Ski / Snowboard Instructor offer includes:Visa assistanceFull board and lodgingMeals and drinksSki Pass and Ski uniformAmazing team and work environmentAttractive wage based on qualificationThink you’re ready to take your snow skills to new heights? Contact the Club Med HR team on HR.Australia@clubmed.comSource = Club Medlast_img read more

Kenya Airways renews its operations in Tanzania

first_imgKenya Airways, up from 14 flights limit, will resume operating 42 flights a week to Tanzania. The ministers of foreign affairs of the two neighbouring countries would convene and chair a meeting of the parties, including ministers of transport, ministers of tourism and chiefs of staff in the two presidencies to discuss and reach a mutually beneficial agreement.“The Kenyan and Tanzanian leaders have also agreed that, with immediate effect, Tanzania-registered vehicles will access Kenya’s main airport, Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, as before,” said Amina Mohamed Kenyan Cabinet Secretary (Minister) for Foreign Affairs and International Trade.Mohamed said that the two leaders would continue to discuss openly issues affecting the brotherly and long-standing bilateral relationship between Tanzania and Kenya.“The first meeting will be held in the Tanzanian city of Dar es Salaam on a date to be agreed by the two governments. The meeting was held under a very cordial atmosphere with the two Heads of State emphasising the need to continue to discuss openly issues affecting the brotherly and long-standing bilateral relationship that exists between Tanzania and Kenya,” Mohamed added.last_img read more

Jamaica to promote gastronomy tourism to lure travellers

first_imgIn a bid to lure more travellers, Edmund Bartlett, Minister of Tourism for Jamaica confirmed that the ministry is taking steps to ensure that Jamaica capitalises on its potential to benefit from gastronomy tourism. He informed that the gastronomy network, which is looking after the process, “has been working assiduously to craft innovative plans”.“Their main strategies include creating a gastronomy mapping platform with easily accessible information on the island’s best food offerings; collaborating with tourism partners to boost the number of quality food festivals, providing capacity-building support for established gastronomy/food tour operators, and working with tour operators to develop enticing food tours across the length and breadth of the island,” he quipped.Bartlett also indicated that these steps help Jamaica position as the leading gastronomy destination and will provide visitors with a variety of authentic Jamaican culinary experiences. According to the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), over a third of tourist spending is devoted to food.“The cuisine of a destination is an aspect of utmost importance in the quality of the holiday experience. Food-related tourism provides an opportunity to stimulate and diversify the tourism sector as it promotes economic development at the local level and involves a variety of sectors,” he contended.last_img read more

Economists Revise Home Value Forecasts

first_img August 9, 2013 429 Views Economists Revise Home Value Forecasts Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Home Prices Home Values Investors Lenders & Servicers Mortgage Rates Processing Service Providers Zillow 2013-08-09 Tory Barringer Home values are on track to reach more than $167,000 by the end of 2013, according to economists and real estate experts surveyed by “”Zillow””: and “”Pulsenomics””:[IMAGE]According to Zillow, respondents predicted median home values will rise to $167,490 by the end of this year, a gain of 6.7 percent over 2012. The forecast is a significant jump from the 5.4 percent annual increase expected in the last quarterly survey.Based on current expectations for home value appreciation over the next five years, panelists on average predicted home values could approach new record highs by the end of 2017.That said, many predicted appreciation rates will slow from 2014 through 2017. According to Zillow, survey respondents said they expect appreciation rates to slow to roughly 4.4 percent in 2014, slipping gradually each year to a rate of 3.4 percent in 2017. [COLUMN_BREAK] Cumulatively, home values are project to rise approximately 23.7 percent over the next four years.””Short-term expectations for home value appreciation through the end of this year are consistent with a nationwide housing market recovery that is both strengthening and widening, but still coping with high levels of negative equity, high demand and low inventory. Combined, these factors will continue putting upward pressure on home values for the next few months,”” said Zillow senior economist Dr. Svenja Gudell.However, Gudell continued, “”the days are numbered for these kinds of market dynamics, as investors begin to pull out of some markets, mortgage interest rates rise and more inventory becomes available.””On the subject of interest rates, many respondents weren’t especially concerned, even with rates posting the largest three-month gain since 2003. Among those who expressed an opinion, 88 percent said they don’t think the current rate environment poses a threat to the housing market recovery; of that group, 61 percent said interest rates would have to rise to at least 6 percent to create a significant threat.””Six percent is the minimum mortgage rate threshold that the most number of panelists view as a potential show-stopper for the recovery,”” said Pulsenomics founder Terry Loebs. “”However, nobody should dismiss the implications for the housing market of the less popular view–held by 38 percent of our experts–that we are already flirting with a reversal of fortunes at or within about 100 basis points of prevailing mortgage rate levels.””center_img Share in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicinglast_img read more

Ocwen Absorbs Another Quarterly Loss

first_imgOcwen Absorbs Another Quarterly Loss in Daily Dose, News, Servicing July 27, 2016 713 Views Financially, it has not been a good year for Ocwen Financial Corp. through the first six months.  After reporting a net loss of $111 million for the first quarter of 2016, the nonbank servicer came back in the second quarter with a net loss of $87.2 million (71 cents per share), according to Ocwen’s Q2 earnings report released Wednesday.Q2’s net loss brought Ocwen’s total net loss for the first half of 2016 up to $198.4 million, compared with a net income of $44.3 million for the first half of 2016. After substantial losses in the third and fourth quarters, however, Ocwen posted a net loss of more than $200 million for the full year of 2015 (the silver lining was, it was an improvement from 2014’s reported net loss of $546 million).Ocwen’s pre-tax net loss of $96.4 million in Q2 were impacted by $40 million in legal defense costs and settlement expenses related to a $30 million settlement in the two Fisher cases to resolve allegations that Ocwen had falsely certified its compliance with certain federal mortgage programs. Ocwen had been battling the two Fisher lawsuits since 2012.Also having an adverse effect on Ocwen’s Q2 financial results were a $15 million reserve for a potential future regulatory settlement, $11.4 million of unfavorable interest rate driven fair value changes related to Ginnie Mae and GSE mortgage servicing rights, and $4.3 million in interest expense under Ocwen’s agreements with New Residential Investment Corp. related to an S&P ratings downgrade of Ocwen.As for the positives of the Q2 earnings report, Ocwen saw a quarter-over-quarter increase in revenue of $42 million—the first time revenue had increased over-the-quarter in a year. The company also experienced a 35 percent over-the-quarter increase in origination volume. Also, Ocwen completed 19,729 loan modifications to assist homeowners facing foreclosure during Q2, which was a 19 percent increase from Q1.“We are pleased to see the progress being made in our core businesses and new initiatives. We also continue to put additional legacy issues, such as the Fisher cases, behind us. While we still have more to do on various fronts, we are moving towards returning to profitability in our core operations while growing our asset-generation activities,” commented Ron Faris, President and CEO. “We continue to invest in risk management, compliance, service excellence and technology. We maintain our leadership in helping families struggling with their mortgage payments as evidenced by our number one status in the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) and our numerous, well-regarded community outreach efforts. Our growth in mortgage lending and Automotive Capital Services are gratifying early indicators of potential success in new initiatives that can allow us, over time, to drive earnings growth.”Click here to view a presentation on Ocwen’s Q2 earnings.center_img Earnings Nonbank servicers Ocwen Financial 2016-07-27 Seth Welborn Sharelast_img read more

Powells Congressional Testimony Backs Further Interest Rate Hikes

first_img Congress fed chair Fed Chair Jerome Powell Federal Reserve House Financial Services Committee House of Representatives Inflation Interest rates Jerome Powell Mortgage Interest Rates testimony 2018-02-27 David Wharton in Daily Dose, Government, Headlines, journal, News February 27, 2018 707 Views On Tuesday, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell made his first appearance before Congress since being sworn into the role. Remarking on the strengthening U.S. economy, Powell told Congress that “some of the headwinds the U.S. economy faced in previous years have turned into tailwinds.”“My personal outlook for the economy has strengthened since December,” Powell told the House Financial Services Committee. “We’ve seen continuing strength in the labor market. We’ve seen some data that will in my case add some confidence to my view that inflation is moving up to target. We’ve also seen continued strength around the globe, and we’ve seen fiscal policy become more stimulative.”Powell downplayed the importance of both increasing government debt and the recent wild swings in the stock market, saying, “We do not see these developments as weighing heavily on the outlook for economic activity, the labor market, and inflation.” Powell said he expected positive consumer sentiment and a strong labor market to help strengthen household incomes and spending. “The economic outlook remains strong,” Powell said.While Powell did not directly specify whether the Fed will likely implement four interest rate hikes this year, rather than three, he did state that “the upside potential for inflation and the increasing positives for growth suggest the risks are skewed towards a more aggressive monetary policy response.” That would jibe with the increasing chorus of voices who are forecasting four interest rate hikes for 2018.Powell isn’t the only Fed official who has been vocal on the topic recently. During a speech at the National Association for Business Economics in New York, Federal Reserve Governor Randal Quarles also expressed optimism about the direction of the economy, saying, “it has been quite some time since the economic environment has looked as favorable as it does now.”During a television interview this week, New York Fed President William Dudley said, “As long as I’m comfortable that the economy is going to continue to grow at an above-trend pace at a time that I think monetary policy is accommodative and financial conditions are easy, I’m probably going to be supportive of removing monetary policy accommodation.”And last week, Dallas Fed President Rob Kaplan said in an essay published on the Dallas Fed’s website that “I continue to believe that gradual and patient removals of accommodation will increase the likelihood of extending the economic expansion in the U.S.”Roberto Perli, a partner at economic research firm Cornerstone Macro and a former Monetary Policy Economist at the Fed, told the Wall Street Journal, “Overall, the tone of the testimony was definitely NOT hawkish. He was optimistic about the growth prospects of the US economy, especially in the near term—he said clearly that his outlook for the economy has strengthened since December, and that sentence pushed yields significantly higher than they were. Still, nothing of what Powell said suggested that the Fed is about to drastically depart from its very gradual pace of rate hikes.”According to Bloomberg, investors increased the probability of a Fed rate hike in Q4 2018 to about 50 percent following Powell’s remarks to Congress. Odds of increases in Q2 and Q3 increased to around 80 percent and 70 percent, respectively.You can read Powell’s full written comments to Congress by clicking here. Powell is also scheduled to deliver the “Semiannual Monetary Policy Report” to the Senate Banking Committee at 10 a.m. EST on Thursday, March 1. That hearing will be webcast live here.center_img Share Powell’s Congressional Testimony Backs Further Interest Rate Hikeslast_img read more

US Avocado shoppers show unique demographic pr

first_img U.S.: Avocado shoppers show “unique demographic pr … U.S.: Border closure threat sends Mexican Hass avo … Hazel® Avocado is a small packaging insert that is placed in the box during packing to reduce respiration rate and increase resistance to ethylene, resulting in longer fruit shelf-life and a higher quality presentation following shipping. In the past year, more than 100 prominent fresh produce shippers have partnered with Hazel®, including DFI Marketing for use with melons, and Agritrade Farms for use with okra.“International interest in Hazel Technologies products has increased faster than anticipated,” said Aidan Mouat, CEO and co-founder of Hazel Technologies. “We look forward to building our relationship with AMR Agro and continuing to build traction in the United States and Latin America in the coming months.”About Hazel Technologies, Inc.Hazel Technologies Inc. is a USDA-supported company based in Chicago, IL. Hazel Technologies helps growers, packers, and shippers of produce extend the shelf-life of their fruits and vegetables, which reduces produce rejections, can extend seasonal availability, and expand geographic markets. Hazel Technologies develops products in the form of packaging inserts that slow ripening of produce due to ethylene and use a blend of essential oils to reduce to inhibit microbial growth. For more information, please visit Amr AgroAmr Agro is a group of dedicated growers of cocoa, avocado, lemon and orange in the Dominican Republic. Established more than a decade ago, Amr Agro strives to be a leading company in exports of Dominican Republican products by efficiently serving its customers with high-quality products consistently. For more information, please visit August 13 , 2018 PRESS RELEASEChicago  — Hazel Technologies, a USDA-funded company developing new shelf-life extension technologies for fresh produce, announces a new partnership with AMR Agro, one of the largest packers and exporters of green-skin avocados in the Dominican Republic. The partnership will initially focus on one of Hazel’s most recent innovations in post-harvest quality technology, Hazel® Avocado. After successful commercial trials with Hazel® Avocado, AMR has adapted its use across a variety of their export programs from the Dominican Republic in order to maintain excellent quality products with minimal waste during transport.The Dominican Republic, once 8th in global avocado production as recently as 2011, is now 2nd globally in total production by volume, behind Mexico. AMR Agro, originally founded in 2007, exports to international markets including the U.S., Canada, Caribbean, Spain, Holland, France and U.K.“Over the past decade, AMR Agro has grown to be a premier packer and exporter of agricultural products from the Dominican Republic,” said Raul Reyes, general manager at AMR Agro. “Through our dedicated partnerships and investments in new, proven technologies such as Hazel® Avocado, we are able to provide higher quality fruit to our customers, increase profits, and reduce waste.”center_img NZ: ‘Serious pest’ affecting avocado trees discove … You might also be interested in Australia: Massive hail storm rips through NSW avo … last_img read more

Tune in to Getaway over the next three weeks as Li

first_imgTune in to Getaway over the next three weeks as Livinia Nixon takes the scenic route to discover the culture, flavours and landscapes of Japan. The Nine Network will be screening three full half hour episodes on Saturday 7, 14 and 21 October.The five star luxury journey reveals the hidden secrets of Japan’s main island of Honshu, from its capital Tokyo in the east to the beautiful island of Miyajima in Hiroshima Bay.Inspired by Scenic’s Essential Japan itinerary, Livinia begin her journey in dynamic Tokyo, traversing several of the city’s 40 distinct districts to discover the contrast between old and new, before joining her fellow guests for a Scenic Sundowners event on board an old-fashioned houseboat, known as a yakatabune.Continuing her travels around Tokyo, Livinia glimpses the city from above, during a visit to the Tokyo’s tallest building, has her fortune told at one of the oldest temples, and finds her inner musician during a traditional Taiko drumming lesson. A visit to the Tsukiji Fish Market, with included Scenic Enrich sushi lesson, cap off Livina’s time in Tokyo, before she heads to the nearby area of Hakone with its open air museum and beautiful Lake Ashi.The following episode sees Livinia travelling from iconic Mount Fuji to the ancient city of Kyoto. Stopping first at a local wasabi farm, Livinia’s journey then takes her to Takayama’s famous sake breweries and on to Nagoya, home of one of Japan’s largest castles and a museum dedicated to one of Japan’s most famous exports.Arriving in Kyoto, Livinia embraces Japan’s ancient traditions with a Scenic Enrich experience combining kimonos and a traditional tea ceremony, before admiring the many World Heritage-listed sites in the city. The final episode introduces viewers to more of Kyoto’s charms, before Livinia travels to Nara, and on to Hiroshima and nearby Miyajima Island, home of the famous “floating” Torii gate.Starting her Hiroshima experience with one of the region’s famous okonomiyaki (Japanese pancakes), Livinia then delves into the city’s heartbreaking history, with a visit to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park where she learns more about the events of 1945 and the tributes that remain to those lost in the tragedy. Scenic is offering Getaway viewers a special discount of $750* per person off all Japan tours departing in 2018 and 2019. *Terms and conditions apply. GetawayJapanSceniclast_img read more

To celebrate the launch of Sri Lanka to the Ventur

first_imgTo celebrate the launch of Sri Lanka to the Venture Far collection, a hosted famil for travel agents has been organised. The date is to be confirmed, however Venture Far is inviting agents to register their interest. Highlights include:• Discover the spice gardens, learn the origins of Ceylon Tea + taste the delicious flavours of dishes that have been inspired by the many cultures that have influenced Sri Lankan cuisine.• Immerse yourself in an authentic safari experience reminiscent of a bygone colonial era in one of the oldest national parks of Sri Lanka.• Participate with pilgrims of all faiths in a night trek reaching the summit of Adam’s Peak in time to watch the sun rise.• Restore the body + reset the mind in a wellness retreat within an unspoiled wilderness, where guests’ health + wellness is the priority.• Travel the southern coastline passing fishing ports, bays + sandy beaches with a choice of accommodation ranging from ocean front resorts to boutique bungalows• Take the Ultimate Food Journey Walking Tour in Singapore + learn about the origin + heritage of their food, sampling dishes from the wet markets + hawker centres.• A selection of small but exclusive range of hotels that reflect where we like to stay in the Lion City – from the historically detailed rooms at The Warehouse, to the sublime architectural resort of Capella Singapore on Sentosa Island. agentsBrochuresfamilSri LankaVenture Far The new Sri Lanka/Singapore brochure delivery commenced 29 May 2018. If are not on the distribution list, you can order yours via Brochure Flow (NSW, QLD, VIC + TAS) and Templar (SA, NT + WA), or download your copy here.Book online now through ROVE.last_img read more

Theres no proof that the Arizona Cardinals have a

first_imgThere’s no proof that the Arizona Cardinals have any interest in Carson Palmer or that he’ll even be available but that doesn’t mean his real estate dealings aren’t news.According to the Cincinnati Enquirer, Palmer has sold his five bedroom house there.Carson Palmer’s house, which was put on the market in late March, took less than two months to find a buyer. Comey & Shepherd Realtors lists the Indian Hill property as under contract. The five-bedroom, two-story property in Indian Hill had an asking price of $2.1 million.The house, made of stone and brick, sits on five acres and also features a gourmet kitchen, 5 1/2 bathrooms, solarium, swimming pool, spa, golf green and pond.Alright, we admit, the fact that Palmer sold his house doesn’t mean he’s coming to Arizona or that he’ll even be dealt to any team. What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke 0 Comments   Share   Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away What we do know is that it becomes a lot easier for a trade to happen when you don’t even own a home in the state the team who has you under contract plays in. That, and imagine what he could buy with $2.1 million in the depressed housing market here in Arizona. We bet if he called up former Cards quarterback and fellow Trojan Matt Leinart he could get a sweetheart of a deal on a nice, slightly used, mansion. Just stay away from the hot tub Carson.center_img Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation Top Stories D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’last_img read more

Top Stories

first_img Top Stories Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away Comments   Share   Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ And Peterson is feeling more comfortable with every game.“It’s coming along, I just want to continue taking it agame at a time, a day at a time,” he said. “It will behere before you know it.” The former LSU star would not point to his inexperience asan excuse. “A lot of guys tell me I’m not a rookie anymore; I’ve gotto go out there and make plays,” Peterson said. “That’swhy they brought me here, to come here and make plays forthis defense, for this secondary and for this team aswell.“I won’t necessarily say it’s a rookie or a learningprocess, I have four games up under my belt now, now it’stime to go make plays.”Peterson has just one interception on the season, andwhile he’s been burned quite a few times there have beenmany instances of him being in position to make a play.Though he doesn’t like the idea it is a learningprocess, and head coach Ken Whisenhunt is seeing signs ofprogress.“There’s going to be some good and some bad,” the coachsaid. “They made some plays on the ball [Sunday], Ithought did a nice job.”Of course, Eli Manning finished the game throwing for 321yards, with 162 of them going to receiver Hakeem Nicks.Victor Cruz also caught six balls for 98 yards, so it’stough to see where the corners did a solid job. But a lot of the issues in the secondary can beattributed, in part, to a non-existent pass rush, as it’stough to ask anyone to stay with a receiver for as long asArizona’s defensive backs have needed to. What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke The number five pick in the draft, Patrick Peterson wasexpected to come in and be a part of a secondary featuringDominque Rodgers-Cromartie and Greg Toler, among others. The offseason saw the team part with DRC and sign veteranRichard Marshall, but Peterson was still expected to bebrought along slowly, probably as a nickelback to start. But then Toler went down in the team’s third preseasongame, lost for the season, and Peterson ascended to astarting role. last_img read more


first_img 0 Comments   Share   Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation Top Stories The Rams offense gained 383 yards on 75 offensive plays.Steven Jackson had 130 of the 150 the Rams had on theground and Sam Bradford threw for 255. All those yards and not once did any of those plays endwith the Rams putting the ball in the endzone. Time after time the Cardinals defense gave up yards but nopoints. Of the Rams 13 points, four of those came on back-to-back possessions that ended with a safety for theCardinals offense. In 13 drives the Cardinals forced three three-and-outs. Oneight of those drives the Rams had 24 or more yards ofoffense. While the Rams weren’t exactly going in for a touchdown,they did have a chance to end the game as they lined upfor a 42-yard field goal on the final play. A huge push bythe defensive line and the big paw of the Cardinals’tallest player — Calais Campbell — blocked the fieldgoal and sent it to overtime.Bending but not breaking. “They were running up and down the field,” Cardinalslinebacker Daryl Washington said. “We just stuck togetheras a defense and as a team. We made more plays than theydid at the end of the day.”In the end the bending paid off as the offense scoredtheir lone touchdown in a game-tying John Skelton pass toLarry Fitzgerald and rookie cornerback Patrick Petersontook a punt return 99 yards in overtime to win the game. What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ “I knew it was gutsy,” Peterson said of fielding the ballnear the goal line. “I’m just trying to make a play forthis team.”All season this defense has had to answer questions aboutlearning new defensive coordinator Ray Horton’s scheme andphilosophy. Sunday showed signs of improvement. “We will continue making progress each and every week,”Peterson said of the defense. GLENDALE, Ariz. — To put it simply, the ArizonaCardinals defense did a lot of bending but never broke intheir 19-13 overtime win against the St. Louis Rams. On paper the Cardinals defense had a rough day. Between the lines — where it counts — the Cardinalsdefense was strong and resilient. “I can’t tell you what it means for a defense when youhave a performance like that. Our group has been togetherfor 10 weeks, 11 weeks now, trying to learn this defense,”Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt said after the victory. Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right awaylast_img read more

More so than anything else Nassib is incredibly a

first_imgMore so than anything else, Nassib is incredibly accurate in the short/intermediate passing game, as he shows a comfort level with those throws. In the five games I charted nearly 25% of his passes were “Bruce Arians” throws, between 11-20 yards in the air, and he completed over 60% of them. I asked for a little help Wednesday on Twitter as I was going through my notes on Thursday’s prospect, Ryan Nassib, who is a very interesting quarterback in this year’s draft class.You see, there are a couple of highly-regarded NFL talent evaluators, Russ Lande and Greg Cosell, that have Nassib as the top quarterback prospect in this year’s draft.Then there are other guys, and I fall into this group, that just don’t know what all the hype is about. Comments   Share   Pocket SenseWhen you watch Nassib work in the pocket against a four-man rush he looks very comfortable. His feet are always moving, allowing him to be mobile within the pocket, move up to avoid the rush and get the ball out. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling The term “lacks functional arm strength” is what worries me the most about Nassib.Can he become not just competent, but effective throwing into those deep windows consistently? If not, I don’t think he’d be a fit in Arizona, but with Carson Palmer in place for at least one season — and I am saying he will be the man for two — that means Nassib will have time to work with Arians and Tom Moore to figure those things out.He’ll likely come off the board at the bottom of round one or top of round two, and could be the “stash” type of QB talent that Arians will be looking for in order to transition from the Palmer era. The BadWorking through readsThis may be a West Coast Frankenstein Offense he comes from, but Nassib generally is not working off multiple reads, and instead goes to read one or two and gets rid of the ball.When I talked about his ability within the pocket, I noted that he can be deliberate at times and that generally was when he was working deeper into his route progressions — at least that’s how it appeared to me.Nassib gets a little ahead of himself at times and misses open men in an effort to get rid of the ball instead of moving to his next read, leaving a lot of the “chunk” plays on the field in favor of living to play another day. Nassib shows some good things at times — some really good things, actually — but he never puts it together consistently.The GoodShort/Intermediate ThrowsWhen you watch Nassib throw the ball in the 1-15 yard range, you see a guy that looks like he has a howitzer attached at the shoulder.The ball comes out clean with a tight rotation, meaning he throws a very catchable ball, and goes to a spot where his receiver can grab it and make a play after he gets the ball in his hands. When he tries to put something behind his deep throws it looks more like he is shot putting the ball down the field, rather than throwing it.OverallNassib is an interesting quarterback prospect, and one that is so divisive because of his unique shortcomings.Are these flaws mechanical? If so, his other abilities would definitely lead me to believe he could be an option in the Arians offense.He needs to learn to throw with a change in velocity/trajectory to different planes of the field, but his ability to put zip on those 15-yard passes in tight windows makes you think he’ll be a weapon.center_img This may be a good thing in a West Coast Offense, but in Bruce Arians’ vertical attack, this won’t work.The UglyGetting VerticalI’ve noted that Nassib showcases a strong arm and a comfort working in the intermediate range of the passing game, but when he tries to get vertical, something happens.You watch Nassib throw on short routes and his arm strength looks like it would lend itself to getting the ball deep and being a weapon in a vertical passing attack, but when he’s asked to push the ball down the field into tight windows his velocity drops and his accuracy goes away. When he’s right, Nassib generally is hitting the last step in his drop and getting the ball out to his receiver, taking pressure off of his offensive line to hold their blocks for an extended period.Nassib can become a little too deliberate at times with his reads, but he keeps his eyes downfield and feels pressure (even if it isn’t always there), moving in the pocket and not just standing still. Top Stories He shows a good ability to read the defense and get the ball out quickly to a spot, even when that spot may be in a tight window.Nassib has the ability to get the ball out when there is trash around him, showing an ability to move up or out of the pocket and make an accurate throw.He has a little John Skelton in him at times, in the sense that he doesn’t always change velocities when he is throwing the ball. That gets him in trouble when he’s throwing to spots and not to receivers, but that is something that could be correctable with solid coaching. Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelolast_img read more


first_img 0 Comments   Share   Top Stories – / 48 The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires For the second time Saturday, Arizona Cardinals general manager Steve Keim opted to use a draft pick to bolster the team’s backfield.Keim followed up his fifth-round selection of Stanford’s Stepfan Taylor by taking Clemson running back Andre Ellington with the No. 187 pick in the sixth round.“Wherever they need me to play, I’ll play,” Ellington said in a conference call Saturday. “I have big-play ability, that’s something I thrived off of my whole season and career in college. I feel like I’m a guy who can come in and give the offense a spark.” In 2012, the 5-foot-9 Ellington ran for 1,081 yards (second in the ACC) and 8 touchdowns. He made the first-team All-ACC in 2012 and was named to the conference’s second team in 2010 and 2011.The former Tigers halfback ran for 3,436 yards and 33 touchdowns (third-most in program history) during his four years at Clemson. He was a three-year starter from 2010-12.“For me, being an undersized back it’s just a mentality thing I’ve always worked on and thrived off of,” said Ellington. “I’m not afraid to go in there and put my helmet on bigger guys coming at me.” Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impactlast_img read more

Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires

first_img Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires The great thing about Tyrann Mathieu is that we are finally talking about what he is doing on the field and not off of it. Since the talented but troubled former LSU star was selected by Arizona in the third round of the NFL Draft, all the discussions about the “Honey Badger” have been about his controversial past. His getting kicked off of the Tigers football team for failing multiple drug tests, his admission that he failed more drug tests than he could count and even questions about his contract with Arizona and whether he would get any guaranteed money. Peter King of Sports Illustrated had reported at one time that Mathieu would not receive any fully guaranteed money in his rookie contract. So watching him play the preseason opener against the Green Bay Packers was a welcome relief from all of the negativity. And to watch him get a sack, make a few tackles and return a punt 24 yards was an early indication that the Cardinals gamble on the former Heisman finalist might just pay off. Now we look forward to his start against Dallas on Saturday to see what else he can do.I’m sure there are plenty of people rooting against Mathieu and hoping he fails. But why? Hopefully he learned from his mistakes. Hopefully he was just a young, immature kid who did some dumb things. Hopefully he was humbled by getting kicked off his team and seeing his draft stock plummet to the third round. Hopefully he is not Michael Beasley. Now everyone that knows me just a little knows that I knew Beasley was going to fail again. It was inevitable. There was no way he was going to stay out of trouble. No chance. You could have taken it to the bank. But Beasley was easy to predict because he was such a screwup as a pro and you knew he just didn’t care.Mathieu made his mistakes in college, so there is the belief that he is eager to prove people wrong, hungry to earn real NFL money on his next contract and, with proper guidance and mentoring from players like Patrick Peterson and Larry Fitzgerald, will actually overcome his demons. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling There is no telling whether Mathieu takes advantage of this second chance or not. So far, so good. Fingers crossed. But there is no reason to root against him. It would be nice to see a troubled youngster rebound and make something out of the talent he has. Top Stories Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo 0 Comments   Share   last_img read more