Meeting Professionals International has
partnered with JLT Services Corp. to offer MPI's 19,000 members new
event cancellation insurance, professional liability insurance,
business owners' policies, special-event coverage and weather
insurance. Members with immediate needs can call JLT at (877)
528-8249. MPI and JLT also are looking into providing term life
insurance, disability income, long-term care, medical/dental/vision
insurance, workers' compensation, employment practices liability
insurance, identity-theft coverage and more.
Hilton Hotels Corp. is in talks with its British
counterpart, Hilton Group PLC, to buy the European group's 400
hotels. Should the $6.3 billion, all-cash deal go through, Hilton
Hotels' portfolio would jump to 2,700 properties in 80 countries
and put Hilton in position to go toe-to-toe with Marriott
International and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, which
are rapidly expanding into the European and Asian markets.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts will develop a US$100
million-plus luxury resort on the island of Bora Bora in French
Polynesia. The St. Regis Resort Bora Bora will include 101
over-water and beach villas, some with private swimming pools built
over the lagoon. The 44-acre resort also will include a
12,000-square-foot spa on a separate island in the lagoon. To open
in April 2006, the resort will be Starwood's fourth managed
property in French Polynesia.
Ground was broken Oct. 11 on a 60,000-square-foot
conference center at the 693-room Doral Golf Resort & Spa, a
Marriott Resort, in Miami. The new center will feature a
24,000-square-foot ballroom. The $25 million addition will open in
early 2007, bringing the resort's total to more than 110,000 square
feet of event space.
Two new airlines, each offering a different level of
business-class service, will compete head-to-head with daily
flights between New York's JFK airport and London's Stansted
International Airport. Luxury-class carrier Eos began service
yesterday. "The Eos experience with an unprecedented 21 square
feet of space [per person] and lay-flat beds is simply unrivaled in
today's market," said David Spurlock, the airline's founder. On
Nov. 1, Maxjet Airways will begin flying. "Maxjet was founded to
bring greater value to the intercontinental market by connecting
key business cities with a high-quality, low-fare business-class
product," said Gary Rogliano, Maxjet's CEO.
The International Association for Exhibition
Management has condemned a new California law designed to limit
unwanted fax transmissions. "California may be terminating itself
as a place that is open to new business development," said Steven
Hacker, CAE, president of IAEM. Under the new measure, which takes
effect in January 2006, recipients can sue senders for $500 for
each fax sent without "express invitation." IAEM's position is that
such a law will impede legitimate business owners and hurt
face-to-face events in California by encouraging producers to move
events out of state.
After years of delays, Pennsylvania governor Edward
Rendell has released the first $16 million for the $632 million
expansion of Philadelphia's Pennsylvania Convention Center. When
completed in 2009, the expanded center will have 541,000 square
feet of contiguous exhibit space, 87 meeting rooms and two
ballrooms totaling 93,000 square feet.