1 MAY 2017

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Cheval to open in Doha

Serviced apartment specialist Cheval Residences is to open its first development outside London in 2020 in Doha, in partnership with the Qatar Industrial Manufacturing Company (QIMC).

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Etihad boost for Sydney

All 14 weekly flights on Etihad Airways' route between Abu Dhabi and Sydney will be operated with its flagship A380 aircraft from 29 October, with the second daily service upgraded from the 328-seat B777-300ER.

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New rules for United

Compensation for denied boarding of up to US$10,000 is among a package of ten new measures announced by United Airlines last week to counter weeks of bad publicity after the forced removal of a passenger from flight 3411 on 9 April (BTN 17 April).

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ON THE SOAPBOX: Song Hoi-see, Plaza Premium Group

Song Hoi-see, founder and chief executive officer of Plaza Premium Lounge Management Ltd, has transformed the airport industry. After leaving his job as an investment banker to launch his own business, he started flying Economy Class, thereby losing his airport lounge privileges. He found the travel experience unpleasant and lacking in adequate services. Identifying a need to improve airport facilities, in 1998 he launched the world’s first Airport Pay-in Lounge at Hong Kong International Airport. Here, he discusses the company’s expansion plans for Heathrow.

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Alitalia faces the abyss

Italy’s flag carrier looked doomed at the weekend after an opinion poll published on Friday showed 77% of Italians believed the airline should not receive more funds but should be allowed to fail.

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Amsterdam's subway and Berlin airport

A team of about 40 journalists and technicians rode the new Amsterdam Noord-Zuid metro line last week in the first full-scale test run of the route. The subway reached its top speed of about 80km per hour, taking the observers from Amsterdam Central to Amsterdam Zuid, then back north to the final stop at Amsterdam Noord.

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Crossrail – full by 2031?

Significant capacity restraints are looming on Crossrail west from Paddington and east from Liverpool Street by 2031, a decade after opening, the MetroRail Congress in London was told last week, writes Andrew Sharp.

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Hot air at London City

The first mass cross-London flight to launch from a major airport will be witnessed at London City Airport (LCY) next month when it plays host to the annual Lord Mayor’s Hot Air Balloon Regatta.

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Leeu plans 5-star London hotel

International luxury property operator the Leeu Collection is to open a 100-bedroom 5-star hotel in London after acquiring its first foothold in the capital, a former office building in Fitzrovia in the West End. The property is due to open in 2019.

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Perth prepares for non-stops

A new transit lounge is being built at Perth International Airport in Western Australia as preparations move into high gear for the launch of Qantas’ new B787 service from London, due to begin on 25 March next year. Tickets went on sale last week.

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Summer launch for Qingdao

Another major Chinese destination goes online with the UK this summer in Beijing Capital Airlines launching direct service between Heathrow and Qingdao, the home of Tsingtao beer and one of its country’s fastest growing cities.

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Wizz Air scores 3m

The important role played by regional airports was brought home last week as Wizz Air, the largest airline operating from Doncaster Sheffield Airport (DSA), celebrated carrying a total of 3m passengers on its routes from there since its first flight to Katowice in September 2006.

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ON TOUR: All the world’s a stage on Koh Samui

Jane Stanbury continues her tour of Thailand, which began with Bangkok (BTN 20 March) and now moves out to the islands

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MAY CRUISE ISSUE

Cruise Lines International Association UK & Ireland (CLIA) has published its marketing review of 2016. BTN takes a look at this eagerly-awaited document and also reports on Silver Muse, the latest addition to the Silversea fleet.

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AND FINALLY: Celebrating with CTT

Swedish company CTT Systems held its annual gathering last week to mark another year of business, with sales and marketing vice-president Peter Landquist hosting an invited audience at the London restaurant club Le Beaujolais.

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CS100 on a roll

Following special trials at London City Airport (LCY) in late March (BTN 3 April), Bombardier’s CS100 aircraft last week was awarded its steep approach certifications by Transport Canada and the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).

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First A350-900 for Asiana

South Korea has joined the A350-900 club with Asiana Airlines taking delivery of its first of 30 orders for the world’s newest twin-engine widebody airliner. The carrier becomes the 12th airline to operate the aircraft.

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Free access at Oakland lounge

British Airways’ Club World and Gold and Silver Executive Club members travelling to Gatwick from Oakland (OAK) following the launch of  the airline’s new direct service are being offered free access to MAG USA’s Escape Lounge.

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Lufthansa NDC initiative

Business travellers are expected to be among the major beneficiaries as a result of Lufthansa Group members Lufthansa, SWISS, Austrian Airlines and Brussels Airlines successfully implementing an NDC-capable Direct Connect solution in the UK.

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Qatar heads for Cardiff

In a move described by Cardiff Airport chairman Roger Lewis as “game-changing”, Qatar Airways last week said it was launching service next year between Doha and the Welsh capital, the only new planned UK route in its network for 2018.

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Record for Virgin Trains

More than half a million journeys taken between London and Cumbria in the past 12 months have set a new record as Virgin Trains celebrates 20 years on the West Coast Main Line.

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TAP heads for Docklands

A new service between Lisbon and London City Airport, with two daily flights from Monday to Friday and one daily flight on weekends, is being launched by TAP Portugal from 29 October.

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WestJet in ULCC plan

The trend to ultra low-cost carriers has spread to Canada, where regional airline WestJet last week said it planned to launch a subsidiary in the country subject to agreement with its pilots and regulatory approvals.

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