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  • Chinese, Russians shore up Middle East tourism

    January 21, 2018 11:19 PM 37

    In Egypt, tourist numbers soared 55 per cent in 2017. — AFP picCAIRO, Jan 22 — Chinese and Russian visitors boosted Middle Eastern tourism last year following a 2016 slump as Europeans gave the area a wide berth on security fears, according to the World Tourism Organization (WTO). The Mideast region as a whole drew 58 million foreign tourists in 2017 — a 4.8 per cent rise on the previous

  • Storm to disrupt traffic at Amsterdam airport tomorrow

    January 17, 2018 1:30 PM 56

    KLM, the operator of the cancelled flights, today said runway capacity at Schiphol will be severely restricted due to the storm. — AFP picAMSTERDAM, Jan 17 — Air France-KLM has cancelled 228 European flights to and from Amsterdam's Schiphol airport planned for tomorrow morning, as a storm is expected to disrupt traffic at the Dutch national airport

  • Airbnb lets users stagger the cost of stays

    January 16, 2018 10:25 AM 47

    Airbnb users can now pay for rentals in two installments. — Reuters picNEW YORK, Jan 16 — Today, the online community marketplace for accommodation rental launched a new payment option letting users pay for stays in installments. The option is available for bookings with a total cost of more than US$250/€200 (RM990). Airbnb is now letting users stagger

  • Riyadh’s Ritz-Carlton to reopen in February

    January 15, 2018 10:59 AM 45

    The Ritz-Carlton website was listing rooms as available from February 14. — Reuters picRIYADH, Jan 15 — The Ritz-Carlton in Riyadh, a holding place of royals and ministers detained in a sweeping Saudi corruption probe, will reopen for business in February, a source at the hotel said. The source, who requested anonymity as he was not authorised to brief

  • Malaysia Airlines starts A350-900 service from KL to Heathrow

    January 15, 2018 4:45 AM 56

    A Malaysia Airlines Boeing 737 aircraft (left) taxis on the tarmac of the Kuala Lumpur International Airport in Sepang. — AFP picKUALA LUMPUR, Jan 15 — Malaysia Airlines today commenced its inaugural A350-900 service from Kuala Lumpur to London with a send-off ceremony at the KL International Airport (KLIA). MH4 departed the KLIA at 9.15am and will arrive

  • Island sculpture park opening in French Mediterranean

    January 13, 2018 3:57 AM 45

    A look at Villa Carmignac in Porquerolles. — Picture by Lionel Barbe via AFPPARIS, Jan 13 — A sculpture park and exhibition space are slated to open on the French island of Porquerolles at the start of the summer season, showcasing the contemporary art holdings of the collector Edouard Carmignac. The Carmignac Collection consists of nearly 300 works

  • London’s Heathrow has a record-breaking 2017 with 78 million passengers

    January 13, 2018 12:03 AM 81

    Some 78 million passengers travelled through London's Heathrow Airport in 2017. ― AFP picLONDON, Jan 13 ― London Heathrow had a record-breaking year in 2017 with 77.98 million passengers traveling through the British capital's airport in 2017. Heathrow's figures have been buoyed by the arrival of larger aircraft with higher passenger capacities, with airlines

  • China shuts Marriott website over Tibet mistake

    January 12, 2018 5:39 AM 51

    Marriott’s Chinese website now shows a message with an apology. — Reuters picSHANGHAI, Jan 12 — Authorities in China have shut down Marriott’s local website for a week after the US hotel giant mistakenly listed Chinese-claimed regions such as Tibet and Hong Kong as separate countries. Shanghai’s cyberspace authority late yesterday ordered Marriott to close

  • Airbnb ‘disappointed’ by Amsterdam plan to cut rentals

    January 12, 2018 2:08 AM 46

    Amsterdam city council said Wednesday that the current annual 60-day limit for private home rentals will now be halved from 2019 ‘to stem the negative influence of holiday home rentals’. — Reuters pic THE HAGUE, Jan 12 — Rent-a-room giant Airbnb has voiced disappointment in Amsterdam’s plans to impose a 30-day limit on letting private homes, saying it will harm the local

  • Rare giant lily pads draw impressive crowds to Paraguay lagoon

    January 9, 2018 7:15 AM 40

    These aquatic plants — their scientific name is Victoria cruziana but locals call them ‘alligator lilies’ — sprawling enough that they can provide a hiding place for a small alligator. — AFP picASUNCION, Jan 9 — An off-the-beaten-path corner of Paraguay has become a tourist attraction this month as visitors flock to see a rare delight floating on a hidden