Air India could soon be operating the world’s longest non-stop commercial flight. The airline is planning to link the IT hotspots of India and the US — Ben-galuru and San Francisco (SFO) — almost 14,000 km apart. At present the longest non-stop commercial flight is operated by Australian airliner Qantas between Dallas Fort Worth in the US and Sydney which is a 13,730 km journey. Next year, Emirates will link Dubai with Panama City, a distance of 13,760 km.
Maharajas’ Express flagged off, begins new tourist season
Maharajas’ Express, the world’s leading luxury train, chugged out of a Delhi station on a royal odyssey to take its patrons across the famed ‘Golden Triangle’, signalling the beginning of its first journey of the new tourist season. A signature enterprise of Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), the train, known for its hospitality and off-train ex-cursion, runs on five circuits across north-west and central India, covering around a dozen destinations, mainly in Rajasthan, between the tourist months of Octo-ber and March. IRCTC Chairman and Managing Director, Dr. AK Manocha, who was present at Safdarjung sta-tion from where the train steamed out, said plans are afoot to run Maharajas’ Express during the off-season too (April-September) with some concession. “During the lean season, we may offer one free ticket for every single booking. Thus, a couple can board the train by buying one only one ticket,” he informed. The three-night/four-day trip, known as ‘Treasures of India’ will offer the guests an opportunity to explore and experi-ence the rich cultural heritage of Incredible India, including the Taj Mahal, mighty fortresses and exquisite pal-aces (in Jaipur) and the Ranthambore National Park.
Albert Hall Museum, Jaipur opens for night viewing
Rajasthan State Government’s efforts for promoting, Night Tourism, the Albert Hall Museum at Jaipur will be opened for night viewing for the first time in its history from 12th Septem-ber, 2015.
The visitors can view antiques and rare artifacts including a 4,000 year old mummy from 07.00 pm to 10.00 pm every day.
112-room Renaissance opens in Lucknow
Renaissance Hotels has announced the opening of its first hotel in North India, in the city of Lucknow. With 16 floors and 112 rooms, it is the tallest hotel to open in Lucknow and offers stunning views of the Gomti River and the city’s landscape. Rajeev Menon, Chief Operating Offer – South East Asia & Pacific, Marriott International, says, “Lucknow is fast emerging as a cul-tural and business hub in Uttar Pradesh and makes for the perfect location for a Renaissance Hotel.
Le Meridien ‘Resort & Spa’ debuts in Mahabaleshwar
Le Meridien Hotels & Resorts, part of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, has announced the opening of Le Meridien Mahabaleshwar Resort & Spa in Western India. Marking the first Le Meridien resort in India, Le Meridien Mahabaleshwar Re-sort & Spa is the brand’s ninth property in the country, further strengthening the brand’s presence throughout India. Nestled in the scenic Western Ghats, the resort is a few hours’ drive from the cosmopolitan centers of Mumbai and Pune, and offers guests an ideal getaway from the hustle and bustle of the city
122 room Hoiday Inn debuts in Bengaluru
InterContinental Hotels Group has opened Holiday Inn & Suites Bengaluru – the first Holiday Inn hotel in the Silicon Valley of India. Located in Whitefield, the city’s big-gest IT hub, the 122-room Holiday Inn & Suites Bengaluru also includes 19 suites and two apartments and caters to the growth of business and leisure travellers to the city. The hotel, which was previously Alila Bengaluru, has received a series of awards and accolades for its design and contemporary look. The hotel features an open lob-by and extensive landscaping to create a fresh feel and relaxing environment. The hotel caters to the city’s growing business sector with The Event Centre, made up of three flexible event spaces of indoor and outdoor space, including a ballroom which can host up to 160 guests
Starwood’s Aloft to debut in Delhi in 2016
Starwood will be launching its first Aloft in New Delhi at Aerocity. Aloft New Delhi Aerocity, which is set to open on December 1, 2016, will have 1,335 square meters of meeting space along with high speed internet access in all the meeting/event fa-cilities. The hotel, which will have 200 guest rooms, has an outfitted tactic with the best A/V set-up, including a 50” flat-panel plasma TV with both laptop hook-up and a DVD player.
Spicejet 1st to perform civilian night landing at Port Blair
SpiceJet flight SG-251 from Kolkata successfully carried out the first-ever civilian airliner night landing at Veer Savarkar International Airport at Port Blair. Under the command of Capt. Gurcharan Arora and Capt. Ranbir Singh, SpiceJet’s 212-seater Boeing 737-900ER aircraft VT-SLD was greeted upon arrival by a grand water can-non salute. The aircraft later departed for Kolkata as SG-261, thereby completing a cycle of landing and take-off from the Port Blair airport during the night time. SpiceJet already operates daily direct flights from Port Blair to Kolkata and Chennai, with onward connections to dozens of more cities.
SpiceJet starts new flights to Dubai
SpiceJet has launched direct flights to Dubai from Amritsar and Kozhikode. Bookings for tickets are open now and flight services will start from November 15, 2015. With the launch of these flights, the airline will be serving Dubai direct from eight Indian cities, Delhi, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Pune, Kochi, Madurai, Amritsar, and Kozhikode, with con-nections from dozens of more cities including Kolkata, Chennai, Hyderabad, and Benga-luru.
While SpiceJet will operate daily flights on the Kozhikode – Dubai route, flights on the Amritsar – Dubai route will operate on all days except Saturdays. It will be deploying its Boeing 737NG aircraft on the newly launched routes.
Ethiopian Airlines commences Addis Ababa-Mumbai double-daily
Ethiopian Airlines has announced the commencement of its double daily operations between Addis Ababa – Mumbai – Addis Ababa as per schedule effective from Octo-ber 26, 2015. The airline ET640 Boeing 787 Dreamliner will depart from Addis Ababa at 20:30 hours and reach Mumbai at 3:50 hours. ET 611 Boeing 787 Dreamliner will depart Mumbai at 4:50 hours and reach Addis Ababa at 7:30 hours. Another ET610 will depart Addis Ababa at 23:35 hours to arrive in Mumbai at 7:00 hrs. ET641 Boeing 767 will leave Mumbai at 11:20 hours to reach Addis Ababa at 14:00 hrs.
5 times a week to Shanghai on Air India
Air India is going to increase the frequency of its Delhi-Shanghai service from October 30, 2015. The national carrier will add a fifth weekly service on the route, running every Friday. This will add to the airline’s existing Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday departures. It flies its new Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner aircraft on the route, offering 256 seats in two classes, including 18 flat-bed seats in business class and 238 seats in economy class. The flights continue onward between Delhi and Mumbai
Udaipur to Delhi and Mumbai on IndiGo
Effective November 1, 2015, IndiGo will launch two new daily non-stop flights on the Delhi–Udaipur routel. The airline will also operate two new daily non-stop flights on the Mumbai-Udaipur route. Udaipur becomes the airline’s 34th domestic and 39th overall destination.