December 2013 E-Newsletter

News from China National Tourist Office

Message from CNTO

On behalf of the China National Tourist Office in New York, my colleagues and I would like to wish you a happy holiday season and a wonderful New Year.

Thank you as well for your continued support of travel to China. We hope that you will continue to inspire your clients to visit China in 2014 and beyond.

All our best wishes as 2014 nears.

Beautiful China

China National Tourist Office, New York
370 Lexington Ave. #912
New York, NY 10017
Email: ny@cnto.org


Director Yaping Xue

 


Contents

Message from CNTO

China Travel News

Upcoming Events and Festivals in China

Partner Travel Supplier News

New Tourism Developments

Culture Corner

Beautiful China

 


China Travel News

Li RiverCNN: Li River among “World’s 15 best rivers for travelers”
A recent article by CNN ranked the World’s rivers, based on the criteria of scenic beauty, nature and wildlife, culture, adventure and activities. China’s Li (Lijang) River, located between the Guangxi Province towns of Guilin and Yangshuo, came in among the World’s best for its “breathtaking karst topography” and boat tours, including traditional bamboo rafting. Click here to read the article.

Shenyang and Dalian to Start 72-Hour Visa-Free Stay
72-hour Visa-free staysStarting January 1, 2014, the Chinese cities of Shenyang and Dalian will launch a 72-hour visa-free stay policy to both destinations for travelers from 45 countries. Shenyang is the capital of northwest China’s Liaoning province, while Dalian, its provincial neighbor in the south, is known for its scenic views and seaside resorts. Shenyang and Dalian are the sixth and seventh cities in China to introduce the policy (following Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengdu and Chongqing).

New High-Speed Railway for Tianjin and Qinhuangdao
High speed railwayA new high-speed railway connecting the port cities of Tianjin and Qinhuangdao was put into operation in northern China, cutting travel time between the two destinations significantly. The new railway line runs through 14 districts and counties in China, covering 178 miles and reaching speeds of up to 135 miles per hour. Before the launch of the new Tianjin-Qinhuangdao railway, China already boasted 34 high-speed rail lines, accounting for one-tenth of the country’s total railway operation mileage.

PudongShanghai Airport Tops the World for Visa Checks
A recent industry survey by Airports Council International ranked Shanghai’s Pudong International Airport (PVG) the fastest for visa checks of any major airport in the world. Pudong utilizes an advanced electronic system to monitor passenger flow, while airport visa officers receive training every week. China’s Beijing Capital International Airport, Longjia International Airport in Changchun, and Meilan International Airport in Haikou also made the top 10 list, receiving rankings of third, fifth and sixth in the world, respectively.


Upcoming Events and Festivals in China

2014Chinese New Year 2014 (January 31, 2014)
The Chinese New Year, also known in China as Spring Festival, is the most important Chinese holiday. Ushering in the lunar New Year, Spring Festival and its celebrations are the equivalent of the western hemisphere’s Christmas and New Year’s Eve rolled into one. 2014 is the Year of the Horse, which is said to be a time of high energy and unexpected adventures – perhaps 2014 is the perfect time for your clients to experience their China adventure!

Lantern Festival 2014 (February 14, 2014)
LanternFor your clients looking for a romantic and new way to celebrate Valentine’s Day, this year’s Chinese Lantern Festival is perfectly timed. Falling on the 15th day of the first lunar month of the New Year – this year February 14 – Lantern Festival (also known as the Yuan-Xiao Festival) is the first significant feast after Spring Festival. Various lanterns light up the night while yuanxiao – rice balls stuffed with different fillings – are enjoyed.


Partner Travel Supplier News

Hainan AirlinesHainan Airlines to Launch Nonstop Boston-Beijing Flights
Starting in June 2014, Hainan Airlines will offer direct service from Boston to Beijing, the first-ever direct flight from Boston to mainland China, shaving approximately six hours off the current travel time between Boston and Beijing. The flights will be offered on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner four times a week in each direction, with connections offered to other cities in China such as Shanghai.

HawaiianHawaiian Airlines’ Honolulu-Beijing Flights Now Bookable
Hawaiian Airlines’ new nonstop service between Honolulu and Beijing, the airline’s first mainland China destination, is now available for ticketing. Upon government approval, the flights will commence on April 16, 2014, and will include three weekly flights. The new flight route offers additional options for travel to China from the West Coast of the U.S. and Canada. Hawaiian Airlines passengers flying to Beijing from any of its 11 gateway cities in North American can also take advantage of free stopovers in Hawaii.

Hainan AirlinesHainan Airlines Wins World’s Leading Economy Class Award
The World Travel Awards (WTA) held its World-Class Awards ceremony in Qatar last month, where China’s Hainan Airlines was honored with the “World’s Leading Economy Class” award. The awards are based on votes by industry professionals and consumers and have been called “the Oscars of the travel industry” by The Wall Street Journal. Hainan’s World award comes just after the airline won the “Asia’s Leading Airline Economy Class” award the month prior.


New Tourism Developments

Aloft Hotels Debuts in Dalian
AloftStarwood brings its Aloft Hotels brand to the seaside city of Dalian with the new Aloft Dalian. Located in a booming commercial area among shopping, dining and recreational activities, the property is within walking distance of the Dalian’s harbor and a 20-minute drive from Dalian International Airport. Aloft Dalian is the sixth Aloft property in China and offers 314 rooms, an urban design aesthetic, live music performances and more. Dalian is also part of the 72-hour visa-free policy, making your clients’ visits there even more convenient. Click here for more information on Aloft Dalian.

RitzThe Ritz-Carlton to Open Hotel in Nanjing
The city of Nanjing, located in eastern China and one of the four great ancient capitals of China, will be the location of a Ritz-Carlton property slated to open in early 2015. The capital of China until 1927, Nanjing sits on the Yangtze River basin and is home to UNESCO heritage sites, including tombs from the Ming Dynasty, and is now a vital commerce center for eastern China. The Ritz-Carlton, Nanjing will feature 297 rooms and 32 suites, along with many other luxury amenities. Click here for more information on The Ritz-Carlton Nanjing.

Grand HyattGrand Hyatt Beijing Unveils Remodeled Grand Suites
Following the debut of 234 newly remodeled guestrooms, the Grand Hyatt Beijing has recently updated its 67 suites. Much like the Grand Premium guestrooms, the Grand Suites feature new carpets, wallpaper, fixtures and furnishings, all with contemporary design and clean lines. Upgraded lighting and tech-savvy conveniences add to the suites and guestrooms. The Grand Hyatt Beijing also plans to update and unveil additional areas throughout the hotel. Click here for more information on the Grand Hyatt Beijing.

New World BeijingFive-Star New World Beijing Hotel Opens
The New World Beijing Hotel debuted recently in Chongwenmen, one of Beijing’s fastest-growing commercial districts and close to Temple of Heaven and other nearby cultural attractions. One of the first five-star hotels in the area, the 309-room property features a low-rise design to complement the surrounding areas, 258 Deluxe rooms, 34 Premier rooms and 17 Suites. Click here for more information on the New World Beijing Hotel.


Culture Corner

Culture CornerFujian Tulou
A tulou is a type of Chinese rural dwelling that is often circular in formation, built around a central open courtyard with only one entrance, windows to the outside only above the first floor, and made of thick fortified-earth walls. They were built between the 12th and 20th centuries with defense in mind to keep the families who dwelled within their walls safe from attacks. Often housing up to 80 families, the tulous also included smaller interior buildings within the huge outer walls, creating a contained mini-city for an entire clan.

The Fujian tulous are located in the southeastern region of China. Set among rice, tea and tobacco fields, the Fujian tulous were named UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 2008.


Copyright 2013 China National Tourist Office
370 Lexington Ave. #912 | New York, NY 10017