Category Archives: News

PHILADELPHIA ANNOUNCED AS HOST CITY OF IRISH TRAVEL AGENTS CONFERENCE IN NOVEMBER 2018

The Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB) is pleased to announce that Philadelphia will host the 2018 Irish Travel Agents Association (ITAA) Annual Conference, which will take place in November 2018.

Announced during ITAA’s Irish Travel Trade Show in Dublin on 12 April 2018, the Conference in Philadelphia will offer agents the opportunity to strengthen relationships with travel professionals throughout Ireland and to enjoy a first-hand experience of what Philadelphia can offer to Irish holidaymakers.

This is an exciting year for Philadelphia, with the city welcoming several new tourism developments in 2018 including a new direct service from Dublin with Aer Lingus, which will join the already established year-round direct flight service from Dublin and seasonal service from Shannon with American Airlines. There will also be several new hotel openings such as the brand-new Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia at the city’s new 60-story Comcast Center, providing guests with sky-high views of the city, and Starwood’s new dual-branded W and Element Hotels, which will be located at 15th and Chestnut Streets.

Pat Dawson, CEO of the ITAA said, “This will be the first time the ITAA Conference has taken place outside of Europe and we expect the conference to sell out quickly. Philadelphia is an exciting and vibrant city, and the new direct service from Aer Lingus makes it even more accessible to Irish travellers.”

Greg Evans, Account Director for the UK & Ireland for PHLCVB added, “This is a great accolade for the city and with direct services with American Airlines and Aer Lingus from Dublin and an additional American Airlines seasonal service from Shannon, the timing of hosting the event couldn’t come at a better time. It will be an excellent opportunity to showcase the city and surrounding areas to the Irish Travel Trade.”

The ITAA has represented Ireland’s Travel Agents and Tour Operators since its founding in 1971 and brings together approximately 100 member companies covering 140 branches in different towns and cities throughout the Republic of Ireland.

For more information on Philadelphia, visit the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau’s website,

www.discoverPHL.com

KIMPTON HEADS FOR CANADA

KIMPTON HOTELS & RESTAURANTS ANNOUNCES THE KIMPTON SAINT GEORGE

Toronto’s first Kimpton now taking reservations for stays beginning July 1

Celebrating its address in the heart of the city’s vibrant Annex neighbourhood, Kimpton announces its first ever Toronto hotel, Kimpton Saint George, located at 280 Bloor Street West between Huron and St. George Street, will open in Summer of 2018.

Now taking reservations for stays commencing July 1, the highly anticipated addition to Bloor Street’s Culture Corridor will pay homage to the community’s history and honour its location at the intersection of arts, culture, and expression. “Toronto is one of the most dynamic cities in the world right now with its own distinct identity and culture, making it a perfect home for Kimpton,” said Ron Vlasic, Vice President of Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants. “We’re thrilled to be opening the first boutique hotel that embodies the essence of the lively Annex neighbourhood, in the hub of the city’s arts, culture and dining scene.”

As North America’s boutique hotel pioneer, Kimpton is known for embracing a locally oriented approach to its design, service and guest experience in all its 66 locations. With forward-thinking, residential-inspired design, want-for-nothing amenities and heartfelt service, Kimpton Saint George will embody all the hallmarks of an authentic Kimpton experience and proudly showcase the brand’s success in re-inventing existing structures and imagining boutique hotels that garner civic pride.

Located amidst Toronto’s world class museums and attractions including the Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema, Bata Shoe Museum, Gardiner Museum, Royal Conservatory of Music and a litany of independent shops, cafes, galleries and arts institutions ripe for exploration, Kimpton Saint George will offer its guests access to Toronto’s multi-faceted cultural scene in one of its most notable districts.

Owned and developed by InnVest Hotels, one of the largest hotel owners in Canada, the 14-story Kimpton Saint George will feature 188 artfully designed guest rooms, including 20 suites, a Presidential Suite and approximately 1,500 square feet of ground level meeting space. Amenities will include a fitness center, complimentary PUBLIC bikes, in-room yoga mats, pet-friendly accommodations, complimentary morning coffee and tea service and hosted nightly social hour. Additionally, industry leader, Terry Tsianos, founder and CEO of Pegasus Hospitality Group, in collaboration with Jackman Reinvents, is poised to introduce a dynamic gastropub dining destination adjacent to Kimpton Saint George. The soon-to-be-announced restaurant will service the hotel’s in-room dining and catered events.

Reservations are currently available for dates of stay starting July 1. As the hotel moves closer to completion, earlier dates will open for availability. For more information, visit www.kimptonsaintgeorge.com and follow along on the hotel’s journey to its summer opening on Facebook and Instagram.

 

 

Julie Greenhill teams up with Greg Evans

The Greg Evans Consultancy (GEC) has announced that Julie Greenhill will join the consultancy as a Director with effect from 01 January, 2018.

 

Greg Evans said “Julie will bring a wealth of experience and skills on board and I look forward to working with her.”

 

Julie has a wealth of experience crammed into her 34 years within the UK Travel Industry. Holding various roles including product and marketing managerial posts for the USA, Canada and the Caribbean.

 

Julie has worked in representation since 2007 and has gained respect for her knowledge and expertise. During this time, she has shared her knowledge and enthusiasm about the USA with the travel trade, journalists and consumers as to the wonders of the USA including destinations such as the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Texas, Scottsdale, Louisiana and the Deep South.

 

Greenhill said “I look forward to working on new and exciting projects with Greg and the rest of the team. We will focus on building and maintaining the relationships that GEC has worked hard to establish over the past 6 years and developing new opportunities for GEC. This is a busy and exciting time for the company and I am looking forward to the challenges that lie ahead.”

WORLD TRAVEL MARKET 2017

Please drop by and say Hi to GEC and visit our clients on Booth NA340-2 at Excel between the 06th & 08th November.

Clients on the stand include Philadelphia CVB, Philadelphia International Airport and The Countryside of Philadelphia – Brandywine Valley and Valley Forge.

 

PHILADELPHIA WELCOMES PLETHORA OF NEW TOURISM DEVELOPMENTS IN 2017

With a myriad of new openings arriving into the city in 2017, there’s no time like the present to book a trip to Philadelphia, the birthplace of America.

Visitors in 2017 will be able to enjoy a number of new experiences opening in Philadelphia including a day trip of the city on the new Total Philly Tour, a cultural visit to the new Museum of the American Revolution and an immersive and educational experience with the latest Virtual Reality demonstration at the Franklin Institution.

 

Launch of Total Philly Tour in April

The ‘Total Philly Tour’ takes visitors through the city’s hotspots and hidden gems. Participants can relish in tasting the delicious food at Jewish delis and the famous Italian Market – the oldest and largest everyday open-air market in America – before paying homage to the unmissable sights within the historic district. This tour also includes a glimpse of public art and stunning mosaics in the Bella Vista neighbourhood and Magic Gardens. To top it all off, the tour comes to a close with a local beer expert, who will guide visitors through the booming local bar and pub scene, showcasing the city’s regional breweries and microbrews. The tour costs from £93 ($119) per person and starts from outside New Image Art & Framing (601 South 9th Street) at 10am, finishing at 7pm. Strictly over 21s and maximum group size of 12 people. For more information, visit www.urbanadventures.com/Philadelphia-tour-total-philly-tour.

Museum of the American Revolution Opened in April

Firmly marking 2017 as a year to celebrate Philadelphia’s colourful past, the state-of-the-art Museum of the American Revolution opened its doors to the public in April. Taking visitors on a journey through the remarkable story of America’s founding, the stunning building features four floors of permanent and temporary exhibition galleries. Aptly located in the historic heart of the city, the museum is just two blocks from Independence Hall and across the street from Carpenter’s Hall, where the Constitutional Congress first met. Original artefacts, immersive settings and dynamic theatres instills visitors of all ages with a profound understanding of, and interest in, the outbreak of conflict and ensuing new nation. For more information, visit www.amrevmuseum.org/.

New Foodie Hotspots

Enjoy a taste of the city in one of several new restaurants opening in Philadelphia. For a vintage dining experience, Chef Michael Schulson has opened ‘Harp & Crown,’ a trendy new foodie hotspot close to Dilworth Park and Philadelphia’s City Hall. Combining charm and luxury with modern sensibility and functionality, the restaurant showcases seasonal ingredients in a menu of global cuisines, as well as a comprehensive cocktail menu at the 32-seat bar. What is more, the space has been transformed to include a two-lane bowling alley in the basement, where revellers can enjoy drinks, pizza and charcuterie between strikes. For more information, visit http://harpcrown.com/. Crowdfunded by more than 1,500 people and named as one of the best new restaurants in America by GQ magazine, the Rooster Soup Co. converts unused food into meals and services for the people who need it most. Co-owned by James Beard Award winner Michael Salomonov, the restaurant serves soup, salads and sandwiches and 100% of the profits generated by the luncheonette go to Broad Street Ministry’s Hospitality Collaborative, which aims to support vulnerable residents of Philadelphia. For more information, visit www.roostersoupcompany.com. Diners looking to experience a taste of Israel should head to Sansom Street, where new all-vegan falafel shop Goldie serves made-to-order falafel sandwiches, shawarma-spiced fries and vegan tehina shakes. For more information, visit www.goldiefalafel.com.

Franklin Institute Launches Virtual Reality Experience

As one of America’s oldest and most beloved museums, the Franklin Institute has been delighting visitors old and young since it was founded in 1824. Despite its age, this science museum on North 21st Street has long been paving the way for innovative displays of information and the latest new Virtual Reality initiative is no exception. Opening to visitors in 2017, the VR demonstration spaces will allow visitors to try out an HTC Vice or Oculus Rift and be transported through outer space, encounter a blue whale, explore the human body, tour the solar system and even take a peek inside a brain! For more information, visit https://www.fi.edu/.

Terracotta Warriors of the First Emperor at The Franklin Institute

From 30 September 2017 to 4 March 2018, The Franklin Institute will welcome 300 artefacts from one of the most significant archaeological discoveries of modern times, China’s Terracotta Warriors. Discovered in 1974, the collection of over 8,000 terracotta sculptures depict the armies of the first Emperor of China and date back to around 209 BC. Crafted with precise detail and buried with the first Emperor in his tomb, each statue holds a unique facial expression and many are still in pristine condition. In a one-of-a-kind exhibition, ‘Terracotta Warriors of the First Emperor’ will welcome 10 real figures from China and take visitors on a journey through the story of the production method of the warriors and how the statues were ultimately discovered. Tickets cost from approx. £15 ($20) for adults and £11 ($15) for children. For more information, visit www.fi.edu/exhibit/terracotta-warriors.

Fashion Outlets of Philadelphia

Spanning three blocks in Philadelphia’s Market East neighbourhood and only a short walk from Reading Terminal Market, Fashion Outlets of Philadelphia will be the largest cohesive retail project in downtown Philadelphia when it opens in 2018. The impressive redevelopment of the former Gallery Mall will include nearly 800,000 square foot of retail, dining and entertainment space, with many designer outlet brands set to open – a perfect match for Philadelphia’s offering of tax-free shopping! For more information, visit www.fashionoutletsphiladelphia.com.

For more information on Philadelphia, visit the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau’s website, www.discoverPHL.co.uk.

 

PHILADELPHIA EXPERIENCES HOTEL BOOM WITH A 20% INCREASE IN HOTEL INVENTORY BY 2018

By 2018, the total hotel inventory in Philadelphia is expect to grow by 20% and the last 12 months have been busy for Philadelphia’s hotel scene, with the city welcoming a host of exciting new hotels including AKA University City, Best Western Plus Philadelphia Convention Center Hotel and The Study at University City.

Further new hotel openings in 2017 and 2018 include the 179-room Aloft Hotel by Starwood, which opens its doors on 31 August 2017, and the Fairfield Inn and Suites in December 2017. Later in 2018, scheduled openings will also include Starwood’s new dual-branded W and Element Hotels and the luxury Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia, which will provide guests with sky-high views of the city.

Liberty Title and Trust Building to Become Aloft Hotel by Starwood on 31 August 2017

The 1929 Liberty Title and Trust Building is a stalwart of historic architecture in Philadelphia and after years of being vacant, the historically-certified 21-story complex is being renovated into a 179-room Aloft by Starwood hotel – the second from the brand to open in the city. With its superb access to the city’s ancient and modern landmarks, the hotel will be a fantastic addition to the Philadelphia accommodation scene when it opens in August 2017. For more information, visit www.starwoodmediacentre.com/aloft.

Fairfield Inn and Suites Philadelphia Downtown Center City in December 2017

New for 2017, Marriott’s Fairfield Inn & Suites in downtown Philadelphia will offer business and leisure travellers smartly designed guest rooms at a great value price. With free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel, ample workspaces and complimentary hot and continental breakfasts, the 121-roomed hotel will also include a pool and fitness centre – perfect for sticking to workout routines while on the road. For more information, visit www.marriott.co.uk/hotels/travel/phlcc-fairfield-inn-and-suites-philadelphia-downtown-center-city.

Cambria Hotel & Suites Philadelphia Downtown in February 2018

Early 2018 will see the opening of Choice Hotels’ Cambria Hotel & Suites Philadelphia Downtown, a 15-floor hotel with 223 modern and stylish rooms and eight suites. Located in the heart of Center City and just a short walk to the Pennsylvania Convention Center, the hotel will boast a first-class restaurant, pool, and plenty of meeting spaces. The brand’s flagship hotel will also include complimentary Wi-Fi, a state-of-the-art fitness centre and the only roof top bar on Broad Street. For more information, visit www.cambriahotelsandsuites.com.

Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia in 2018

Set to occupy the top floors of the impressive new 60-story Comcast Innovation and Technology Center, which will be the tallest tower in Philadelphia, the new Four Seasons Hotel Philadelphia will provide guests with breath-taking unobstructed views of the city and outstanding service when it opens in 2018. With a sleek minimalist design, the 217-roomed hotel will house three high-tech meeting rooms and a pool framed by double-height windows. The new sky-high hotel, which will include 38 luxurious suites, will also play host to an energetic street-level restaurant, along with a penthouse restaurant and lounge high above the city on the 59th and 60th floors. For more information, visit www.fourseasons.com/philadelphia.

W and Element Hotels in 2018

Located at 15th and Chestnut Street, Starwood’s new dual-branded W and Element Hotels property is projected for completion in 2018. The 295-room W Philadelphia and 460-room Element Philadelphia Hotel will occupy a 51-story tower and offer guests panoramic city views, an outdoor pool bar and terrace and meeting facilities. The two hotels will share a common design theme inspired by the city’s environment and culture, including influences from the rich industrial heritage of Philadelphia and the historic Fairmount park. For more information, visit www.starwoodhotels.com.

 

For more information on Philadelphia, visit the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau’s website, www.discoverPHL.co.uk

 

 

BINDLESTIFF TOURS

April 2017 – The Greg Evans Consultancy is pleased to announce it has been appointed as the UK and Ireland sales and marketing office for small group adventure specialist Bindlestiff Tours.

Founded in 2011, Bindlestiff Tours specialises in operating small group adventure tours in the American West with a focus on Nevada, Utah, Arizona, California, Pacific Northwest and Alaska offering a range of one to seven-day experiences. Based in Las Vegas, the company offers clients the opportunity to explore world-famous landscapes and National Parks, which are home to some of the most breath-taking scenery in the US, including Monument Valley, Yosemite, Bryce and Antelope Canyon, Death Valley and also the Grand Canyon.

Alongside day-tours, the overnight tour programmes provided by Bindlestiff Tours also include traditional American post-hike activities including evenings around the campfire, BBQs by the lake and camping under the stars. With knowledgeable and enthusiastic tour guides, the award-winning group adventure specialist is dedicated in providing the best for travellers looking to explore the American Southwest’s unique natural landscapes with like-minded international travellers.

For more details please get in touch
mark@gregevansconsultancy.com

The Writing’s On The Wall In Philadelphia’s Art Scene This Summer

For globetrotters looking for a dose of authentic culture and an inspiring burst of art this summer, Philadelphia offers something for all artistic tastes to get excited about. Home to three of the greatest museums of art in America – the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Barnes Foundation and Pennsylvania Academy Of The Fine Arts – the city has long been established as a cultural hub.

What is more, Mural Arts Philadelphia has just relaunched its programme of tours in time for the summer, so visitors can marvel at some of the city’s 4,000 murals between more traditional museum visits.

Mural Arts Tour Summer Programme
Offering a taste of the unique and fascinating stories behind the art that has connected communities throughout the city for over 30 years, arts fans should look no further than a Philadelphia Mural Arts Tour for their summer holiday itinerary. The programme brings art to life with its offerings of trolley jaunts, guided walks and even Segway excursions, each showcasing public artworks instilled with the notion that art ignites change and encourages learning. Each year, the professionally-trained guides lead 12,000 residents and visitors through the striking outdoor gallery that has become an intrinsic part of the city’s landscape and is renowned globally. Tours can now be booked for April onwards and tickets start from $22 (£17.67) per person. For more information and to book, visit www.muralarts.org/.

Philadelphia Museum of Art
While they were made world-famous by Rocky Balboa, the steps up to the Philadelphia Museum of Art are also a gateway to some of the finest culture in the United States. Visitors can roam the expansive space for hours, enjoying the 240,000 artistic and architectural offerings from global talents that are displayed in permanent and semi-permanent exhibition rooms. With sculptures, paintings, prints, photographs and more on show, there really is something for every whim, stretched across one of America’s largest museums. Opening hours are 10am to 5pm, Tuesday through to Sunday, and admission starts from $14 (£11.21) for children aged 13-18 and adult tickets cost $20 (£16.07). Free for under-12s. For more information, visit www.philamuseum.org/.

The Barnes Foundation
Home to over 3,000 masterpieces, including 181 Renoirs, 69 Cézannes, 59 Matisses, 46 Picassos, 16 Modiglianis and 7 Van Goghs, plus textiles, metalwork, decorative objects, African Sculpture, Native American ceramics and jewellery, and Pennsylvania German furniture. Since opening in 1922, the Barnes Foundation has welcomed over one million visitors and promoted “the advancement of education and the appreciation of the fine arts and horticulture.” Visitors can either study the masterpieces in each gallery unaccompanied or opt for a guided tour on their favourite artist. And on the first Friday of every month, the museum extends its opening hours from 6pm – 9pm and offers free admission on the first Sunday of every month. Standard opening hours are 10am to 5pm, Wednesday through to Monday, and admission starts from $10 (£8.01) for children aged 6-18 and adult tickets cost $25 (£20.08). Free for under-5s. For more information, visit www.barnesfoundation.org.

Pennsylvania Academy Of The Fine Arts
Founded in 1805, the Pennsylvania Academy Of The Fine Arts (PAFA) was the first art museum and art school to be established in the United States. Teeming with culture, the museum is renowned globally for its collections of 19th- and 20th-century American paintings and sculptures, while its archives hold important materials for the study of American art history, museums and art training. With a busy calendar of events and temporary exhibitions scheduled throughout the summer, PAFA has plenty on offer to keep the most discerning traveller entertained. Weekday opening hours are 10am to 5pm on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, while doors do not close until 9pm on Wednesday. Weekend hours are 11am to 5pm. Admission starts from $8 (£6.41) for children aged 13-18 and adult tickets cost $15 (£12.05). Free for under-12s. For more information, visit www.pafa.org/visit.

For more information on Philadelphia, visit the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau’s website, www.discoverphl.co.uk

PHILADELPHIA TO WELCOME PLETHORA OF NEW TOURISM DEVELOPMENTS IN 2017

With myriad new openings planned to arrive into the city in 2017, there’s no time like the present to book a trip to Philadelphia, the birthplace of America.

Visitors in 2017 will be able to enjoy a number of new experiences scheduled to open in Philadelphia including a day trip of the city on the new Total Philly Tour, a cultural visit to the new Museum of the American Revolution and an immersive and educational experience with the latest Virtual Reality demonstration at the Franklin Institution.

Launch of Total Philly Tour
Launching in 2017, the ‘Total Philly Tour’ will take visitors through the city’s hotspots and hidden gems. Participants can relish in tasting the delicious food at Jewish delis and the famous Italian Market – the oldest and largest everyday open-air market in America – before paying homage to the unmissable sights within the historic district. This tour also includes a glimpse of public art and stunning mosaics in the Bella Vista neighbourhood and Magic Gardens, adding intricate beauty to any traveller’s photo collection. To top it all off, the tour comes to a close with a local beer expert, who will guide visitors through the booming local bar and pub scene, showcasing the city’s regional breweries and microbrews. The tour starts from outside New Image Art & Framing (601 South 9th Street) at 10am, finishing at 7pm. Strictly over 21s. For more information, visit www.urbanadventures.com/Philadelphia-tour-total-philly-tour.

Museum of the American Revolution to Open in April
Firmly marking 2017 as a year to celebrate Philadelphia’s colourful past, the state-of-the-art Museum of the American Revolution will open its doors to the public in April next year. Taking visitors on a journey through the remarkable story of America’s founding, the stunning building will feature four floors of permanent and temporary exhibition galleries. Aptly located in the historic heart of the city, the museum is just two blocks from Independence Hall and across the street from Carpenter’s Hall, where the Constitutional Congress first met. Original artefacts, immersive settings and dynamic theatres will instil visitors of all ages with a profound understanding of, and interest in, the outbreak of conflict and ensuing new nation. For more information, visit www.amrevmuseum.org/.

Liberty Title and Trust Building to Become Aloft Hotel by Starwood
As the only building on the block of Broad Street and Arch Street to survive the expansion of the Pennsylvania Convention Centre, the 1929 Liberty Title and Trust Building is a stalwart of historic architecture in Philadelphia. After years of being vacant, the historically-certified 21-story complex is being renovated into a 179-room Aloft by Starwood hotel – the second from the brand to open in the city. With its superb access to the city’s ancient and modern landmarks, the hotel will be a fantastic addition to the Philadelphia accommodation scene when it opens in 2017. For more information, visit www.starwoodmediacentre.com/aloft.

New Foodie Hotspots
Why not toast the start of 2017 in one of several new restaurants in Philadelphia. At the iconic Ritz-Carlton Hotel, where luxury and grand decor can be found in abundance, savour Latin-American cuisine in the stunning, newly-decorated hotel lobby restaurant. ‘Aqimero’ is bound to make any occasion special, whether diners have a reservation to stay the night or not. For more information, visit http://www.ritzcarlton.com/en/hotels/philadelphia. For a more vintage dining experience, Chef Michael Schulson has opened ‘Harp & Crown,’ a trendy new foodie hotspot close to Dilworth Park and Philadelphia’s City Hall. Combining charm and luxury with modern sensibility and functionality, the restaurant showcases seasonal ingredients in a menu of global cuisines, as well as a comprehensive cocktail menu at the 32-seat bar. What is more, the space has been transformed to include a two-lane bowling alley in the basement, where revellers can enjoy drinks, pizza and charcuterie between strikes. For more information, visit http://harpcrown.com/.

Franklin Institute Launches Virtual Reality Experience
As one of America’s oldest and most beloved museums, the Franklin Institute has been delighting visitors old and young since it was founded in 1824. Despite its age, this science museum on North 21st Street has long been paving the way for innovative displays of information and the latest new Virtual Reality initiative is no exception. Open to visitors in 2017, the VR demonstration spaces will allow visitors to try out an HTC Vice or Oculus Rift and be transported through outer space, encounter a blue whale, explore the human body, tour the solar system and even take a peek inside a brain! For more information, visit https://www.fi.edu/.

Sad News re Judy McCluskey

On Tuesday 15 November 2016, Judy McCluskey, Agency Principal of travel and tourism PR and Marketing consultancy McCluskey International, passed away. Judy had suffered a heart-attack a week earlier and sadly didn’t recover.

???????????????????????????????????? Judy McCluskey

A small funeral has been arranged for close family and friends on Wednesday 23 November, and a larger memorial will be held on Wednesday 30 November at 12 noon at Our Lady of Grace and St Edward Church on Chiswick High Road, Chiswick, W4 4PU with a reception to follow afterwards.

Please contact info@mccluskey.co.uk to receive an address to send condolence cards or messages to. Those that wish to attend the memorial service on Wednesday 30 November are asked to also please email info@mccluskey.co.uk so that Judy’s family can be informed.