Media Newsletter
  Tips, Trips, and Happenings from
Friends of Travel Classics Writers Conferences

Tourism Ireland
Everyone's Irish on St Patrick's Day
The St Patrick's festival is the highlight of the early part of the year in Ireland and kicks off the vacation season in style with a Mardi Gras parade through the historic streets of Dublin, the marching band championship in Limerick and new Home of St Patrick events in Armagh and Down. As the one national holiday that is celebrated in more countries around the world than any other, on St. Patrick's Day everyone wants to be Irish. Visit tourismireland.com. Media contact: Bernard McMullan, 212-418-0847
Visit Tucson
Celebrate the Agave Beverage Tradition in Tucson
The 2017 Agave Heritage Festival runs from Wednesday, May 3 to Sunday, May 7, 2017 in Downtown Tucson. A celebration of the various distillations of the agave plant, from bacanora to sotol. With the cooperation of the Mexican Consulate, attendees to the events over five days will have the opportunity to taste beverages so far undiscovered north of the border. Visit visittucson.org. Media contact: Dan Gibson, 520-770-2133
Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni Re-opens for the Season
The Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni, the only five-star hotel in Bellagio on shores of Lake Como, reopens for the season on April 08, 2017! This luxury resort is the perfect spot to celebrate life's important occasions while offering palatial accommodations and unparalleled service, and the perfect synergy of traditional and contemporary, activity and relaxation. Impeccably trained staff provide all the flawless details for memories for a lifetime. Special opening rates start at Euro 450 per double room. Visit villaserbelloni.com. Media contact: Noel M. Carroll, 914-961-0334
Willcox Wine Region Highlighted in Scottsdale
Downtown Scottsdale is buzzy with five wine tasting rooms, four from Arizona vineyards, making up the Scottsdale Wine Trail. LDV Wine Gallery, Aridus Wine Company, Salvatore Vineyards and Carlson Creek Vineyard tell the story of the state's nearly 100 award-winning wineries and bring the taste of the Willcox wine region to the heart of Scottsdale. Visit experiencescottsdale.com. Media contact: Laura McMurchie, 480-429-2253
Switzerland Tourism
The World's First Electric Grand Tour in Switzerland
The Grand Tour of Switzerland combines the highlights of Switzerland in one journey. The 1000-mile route takes in over 44 highlights and passes by 20 lakes. By summer 2017, the entire tour will be electrified so that electric cars can follow it. The E-Grand Tour of Switzerland will be the world's first official holiday route that can be driven end-to-end in an electric car. Visit MySwitzerland.com. Media contact: Ursula Beamish-Mader, 416-695-3496.
Good Food Ireland Celebrates Success
For ten years Good Food Ireland has influenced change in Ireland's food scene. What started as a vision to bring together Ireland's premium agri-food and tourism businesses has now blossomed into providing food tours, food trails and food and drink experiences for food lovers visiting Ireland. In the words of founder Margaret Jeffares, "my dream is now coming true, as a farmers' wife and having worked promoting Ireland to tourists for more than 25 years, seeing the rapidly growing demand for our tours." Visit goodfoodireland.ie. Media contact: Margaret Jeffares, +353539158693
Ireland's Blue Book
Create a New Family Tradition at Ballymaloe
Join our head gardener in planting a Sessile Oak tree on the Ballymaloe estate. You will be presented with a certificate recording location of your tree. Future generations of your family can continue to visit your tree for years to come. This package includes the tree planting ceremony, two nights with dinner on one evening in the famous Yeats room, and our famous country house breakfast served both mornings. Valid until April 4, 2017. From 300 euros per person sharing. Visit irelandsbluebook.com. Media contact: Maria McEnery, 016769914
Tourism Vancouver
Five New Must-Do Culinary Experiences in Vancouver
Vancouver chefs, culinary operators and restaurateurs are always cookin' up something new, including Off the Eaten Track's "Sip, Savour, Shop on Main Street" tour combines the best of this edgy neighbourhood's food, apothecary shops and kitschy stores; Timber Restaurant's Long Table Canadian Supper celebrates Canada's 150th birthday with a family-style dinner with cribbage boards, photo booth and s'mores; Fairmont Hotel Vancouver's new afternoon tea takes a page from the Brothers Grimm to transform Notch8 Restaurant into a fairytale wonderland. Visit tourismvancouver.com. Media contact: Sonu Purhar, 604-631-2870
Fairmont Scottsdale
Meet the Golden Friends of Fairmont
Travelers missing their own furry friends can meet the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess' four-legged colleagues: Bixby, a yellow Labrador retriever and his pal Gibbs, a red golden retriever. A new book, "The Golden Friends of Fairmont: The Adventures of Bixby and Gibbs" is written and illustrated by Fairmont colleagues. For hotel guests traveling with their dogs, the resort's Posh Paws program gives pooches the "ruff" life with special amenities. The Concierge Desk provides pet check-in with treats and recommendations for dog parks, animal clinics and pet-friendly hikes. Visit scottsdaleprincess.com. Media contact: Valerie Lee, 480-585-4848.
Sanctuary at Camelback
New Culinary Festival at Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain
Paradise Valley will be heaven for fine food aficionados with the debut of Nirvana, a culinary festival hosted by Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa. The inaugural Nirvana will evoke "a flavorful state of mind," bringing together festival-goers with world-acclaimed chefs and winemakers for a series of tastings, special meals, and a celebrity golf tournament April 27-30, 2017. Visit sanctuaryaz.com. Media contact: Jamie Scalici, 212-980-9194.
Four Seasons Scottsdale
Yoga and Wine for Health at Four Seasons Scottdale
Indulge in a healthier happy hour this spring with the return of the "Wine & Unwind" series. Each engagement begins with a yoga flow class for all levels, set to the tune of rhythmic guitar music, followed by a glass of red or white wine. The spring 2017 dates are as follows: March 31, April 14 and May 26. Visit fourseasons.com/scottsdale. Media contact: Kim Cole, 480-513-5049.
Starwood Hawaii
Starwood Hawaii Offers Guide to Destination Weddings
From the best places to kiss, to breathtaking and isolated overlooks, the Hawaiian Islands are the leader in romance. Download our new "Secrets for a Successful Destination Wedding," exclusively available from Starwood Hotels & Resorts in Hawaii. Our remarkable beachfront resorts representing world renowned brands Sheraton, Westin, Luxury Collection and St. Regis, are ideal for a romantic escape and embody the true essence of our islands. Starwood's experts can help you explore the magic, the beauty and the timeless allure of Oahu, Maui, Kauai and Hawaii's Big Island. Visit starwoodhotelshawaii.com. Media contact: Jean Dickinson, 808 921-4038.
The Boulders
Sip, Savor, Spa & Sunsets at The Boulders
Guests seeking a "grown-up summer getaway," can enjoy rates almost at 70% below winter rates, at this picturesque desert retreat that Travel + Leisure recently named the "Best Hotel in Arizona." In addition to the multi-million resort-wide renovation that includes new guest casitas, guests can enjoy the newly-designed golf clubhouse facility, unlimited golf, spectacular sunsets on the expanded patio and a savory summer menu at the new Grill Kitchen & Bar. Also in store for late spring is the Boulders Tequila Festival and Global Shaman Experiences at the legendary Spa. Visit theboulders.com. Media contact: Debi Bridges, 480-306-4242.
The Artful Identity of Hermosa Inn
Originally created by cowboy artist Lon Megargee as his art studio and residence in the 1930s, the Hermosa Inn continues its tradition of arts, culture and culinary exploration, with an expansive seasonal round program that includes: the Art of Cooking Series; Artist-in-Residence events; multi-course culinary celebrations in conjunction with Arizona chefs and spirits; holiday cooking and craft classes; plus an array of interactive art classes. The Mimosas & Monet Art Class offers a delightful morning on a picturesque patio with entertaining art instruction and libations. Visit hermosainn.com. Media contact: Keeley Ast, 480-220-1061.
Westin Kierland
Introducing PlayDateNight at The Westin Kierland
Give the babysitter and your wallet a break! Parents enjoy a dinner "Date Night" while treating their kids to an evening of fun with a "Play Date" with The Westin Kierland's new program "PlayDateNight." Parents can savor a relaxing meal of Nuevo Latino cuisine at deseo restaurant or Arizona-inspired dishes, including Arizona-raised Prime Beef, at Nellie Cashman's Monday Club Cafe. Kids enjoy a Kid's Club Pajama Party with games, crafts, movies and a kid-friendly dinner. $120 per family; includes $120 restaurant dining credit Sun-Thu, $100 credit Fri-Sat. Call 480-624-1202. Visit kierlandresort.com. Media contact: Jennifer Franklin, 480-624-1315.
Bern Tourism
BernARTiner in Bern
From July 1, 2017, Bern will temporarily be home to more than 100 new animal residents: artfully designed BernARTiner pieces will be exhibited in Bern for the first time, and for one time only. The exhibition will end in 90 days with an auction, the proceeds from which will be donated to UNICEF Switzerland and the Barry Foundation. Visit bern.com. Media contact: Nicole Schaffner, +41 31 238 12 42.
Lucerne Tourism
New 3-Deck Ship to Launch at Lake Lucerne
The newest motor vessel of the Lake Lucerne Navigation Company will enter public service in May 2017 and redefine quality in Swiss passenger shipping. The new three-deck ship is to be a milestone of Swiss shipping, measuring 63.5 m in length and 13.3 m in width. With its elegant appearance, spacious decks and innovative design features, the boat will function as an attraction in its own right. Learn more: lakelucerne.ch. Media contact: Sibylle Gerardi, 0041 41 227 17 33
Swiss Travel System
Unique New Route Between Lucerne and Lugano
The Gotthard Panorama Route is about to enjoy a new lease of life: from spring 2017, the combined boat and train route between Lucerne and Lugano, the "Gotthard Panorama Express", will be enriched by new attractions and experiences. Aboard the Lake Lucerne steamship and on the panorama train, presentations highlight the history of this traditional route in the heart of Switzerland. Visit swisstravelsystem.com. Media contact: Isabella Ignacchiti Drüeke, 0041795939550.
Southwest Germany
Southwest Germany Celebrates 200 Years of Bicycles
The bicycle, featured at the Techoseum in Mannheim, turns 200 this year. Long before Gottlieb Daimler and Carl Benz, Karl Drais invented the bicycle in Mannheim and patented it in 1817. Just like the car, the bicycle has come a long way from its first invention, as have the bicycle routes all over its home state of Baden-Württemberg. Whether riding through the Swabian Alb, the mysterious Black Forest or the breath-taking Lake Constance. the bicycle is the best way to experience any region. Visit tourism-bw.com. Media contact: Victoria Larson, 917-678-7689.

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