Cruise ship Costa Concordia is upright, 20 months after it ran aground on rocks off the Italian island of Giglio. In the operation that took all of Monday and most of the night, engineers used cables and metal boxes filled with water to roll the ship onto a platform, the BBC reported. The Costa Concordia capsized in January 2012, killing 32 people. The bodies of two of the victims of the disaster have never been found. There are hopes that they may be located during the operation. The vessel is now sitting on a platform built on the sea bed. Source: TravelMole
Breakfast 007 Style at The Dorchester
Dorchester Collection’s iconic British hotel, The Dorchester will be the first and most fitting location to read the new James Bond book on publication day, Thursday September 26, 2013, and will host a book reading by William Boyd on Saturday September 28, 2013. The Dorchester is the setting for the opening scene of new James Bond book by international bestselling author William Boyd, in which 007 is described as treating himself to a 45th birthday breakfast in 1969. In the book, Bond’s breakfast at The Dorchester consists of “four eggs, scrambled with pepper sprinkled on top, half a dozen rashers of unsmoked bacon, well done, on the side and a long draught of strong black coffee”. From Thursday, September 26th, guests quoting ‘Solo’ while making a breakfast reservation will receive a copy of the book or can choose to listen to the audio version read by British actor Dominic West on an iPod over breakfast. Creating the perfect environment by evoking the time the novel is set; restaurant guests will also have the option of listening to hits from the 60’s on an iPod, be given a copy of a national newspaper and the menu from 1969, and will be served their breakfast silver service in keeping with the 60’s. Source: Press release.
Tourists, Not Conventions, Feed Chicago Hotel Boom
After a drought in new construction dating back to the 2008 financial crisis, downtown Chicago is suddenly awash in new hotel projects. No fewer than a dozen new hotels representing about 2,700 rooms have recently opened or are under construction, and additional projects seem to be announced on a weekly basis. These include four- and five-star properties by international names like Langham and Loews, as well as numerous smaller lifestyle hotels by a range of independent operators. The boom, say developers and analysts, is driven by strengthening fundamentals of the market. Chicago is the country’s fourth-largest hotel market behind Las Vegas, New York and Orlando, Fla., with a downtown total of about 37,000 rooms. In the past, the industry has depended on the city’s lakefront McCormick Place convention complex to spur growth. What makes this boom different is that it is being driven largely by smaller lifestyle hotels that appeal to leisure and international travellers. Source: NYTimes