Industry News

*Milestone For L.A. Live
*World of Coke
*New Uniglobe Agency
*Majestic Joins CLIA

Milestone For L.A. Live

The new sports, entertainment and residential district being built in downtown Los Angeles L.A. Live reached a milestone on June 1 with the groundbreaking of a 1,001-room hotel/224-room residence tower. California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa presided over the festivities.

The 54-story L.A. LIVE tower will include both the Ritz-Carlton Residences (an upscale residential condo development) and a luxury hotel property shared by Ritz-Carlton and the JW Marriott.

“The Ritz-Carlton Residences at L.A. LIVE are complemented with a world-class hotel property that answers a long-awaited need for Downtown L.A.’s millions of visitors,” said Timothy J. Leiweke, president and CEO of AEG, the L.A. LIVE developers.

The hotel will include ballrooms, meeting spaces, rooftop decks, swimming pools and resort facilities and provides new lodging options for the 2½ million convention attendees who visit downtown Los Angeles every year.

World of Coke

The city of Atlanta is home to a brand-new attraction, the World of Coca-Cola at Pemberton Place. Estimated to draw more than 1 million visitors its first year, the new facility will showcase the world’s top-selling beverage and its connection to people from around the world. Exhibits include more than 1,000 artifacts that have never been seen by the public; three theaters (one in 4-D), a real bottling line, a popular culture exhibit showcasing artwork by Andy Warhol as well as TAW contributor Mark Edward Harris and a contemporary tasting lounge where guests can sample 70 Coca-Cola products from around the globe including sparkling beverages, waters, juices, teas and sports drinks.

New Uniglobe Agency

Ten of Uniglobe Travel USA’s leading agencies have joined together to form a new $200 million agency known as Uniglobe Travel Partners, a move that will place the company in the top percentile of U.S. travel companies. Uniglobe Travel Partners is structured so each of the 10 members are equal shareholders and joint owners. The company will have 13 offices across the U.S. (in major cities including New York, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Chicago, Portland and San Francisco) and global networking links with more than 700 Uniglobe Travel franchises in 30 countries.

Uniglobe Travel is the world’s largest single-brand travel franchise company with more than 700 locations in 30 countries. Uniglobe Travel agencies specialize in travel management services for mid-sized corporate accounts and leisure travelers. Annual system-wide sales were $2.2 billion in 2006.

Majestic Joins CLIA

Majestic America Line has joined the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA). The Seattle-based Majestic America Line is America’s largest river and coastal cruise company. The line operates seven U.S.-flagged vessels in three different regions of America the Mississippi, Ohio and tributary rivers; Pacific Northwest’s Columbia, Snake and Willamette rivers; and Alaska’s Inside Passage. CLIA’s cruise line membership now consists of 22 lines.

Majestic America Line, formed through the combination of American West Steamboat Company and the vessels of the Delta Queen Steamboat Company, is a division of Ambassadors Cruise Group, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ambassadors International, Inc. Together with Ambassadors International Cruise Group, Ambassadors Cruise Group operates both Majestic America Line and Windstar Cruises, a leader in luxury small-ship cruising.

“We are particularly excited to provide this esteemed industry association with our unique perspective on small-ship and niche cruising,” said David Giersdorf, president of Majestic America Line.