According to THA, the previous #koulouriofthemonth contests have been very successful, as social media users posted photos from various areas of Greece, as well as from the UK, France, The Netherlands, Sweden, Turkey.“The news for the contest also reached social media users in the US, Canada and Australia,” the association said.THA members started serving “Thessbrunch” (meaning “want brunch”) in May 2017.Since then the initiative has been warmly embraced by the public, and Thessaloniki’s hoteliers are participating every season with new dishes, unique wines and cocktails, as well as the landmark koulouri. 37sharesHome > Events > Event News > ‘Thessbrunch’ Launches New #koulouriofthemonth Photo ContestThessbrunch, the award-winning culinary initiative of the Thessaloniki Hotels Association (THA), has launched a new online photo contest featuring the Greek sesame seed bread ring, also known as koulouri.After a successful spring season of events, which saw the participation of a record number of Thessaloniki hotels, Thessbrunch is inviting its friends from around the world to embrace the competition by uploading photos of persons, buildings, dishes, landscapes or other favorite themes using the koulouri as a frame, with the hashtag #koulouriofthemonth also tagging @thessbrunch on social media.According to an announcement, the best summer photo of koulouri will provide a winner with a two-nights’ accommodation in a five- or four-star hotel in Thessaloniki.The contest’s deadline is on August 31 at 11:59 pm, and the winner will be announced through thessbrunch’s social media.
What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right away The Cardinals have the 13th pick in the 2012 NFL Draft,and many think the team will be looking for offensive linehelp when they make their selection. ESPN NFL Draft guru Mel Kiper is one of them.Kiper’slatest mock draft, version 1.0, has the Cardinalstaking Stanford tackle Jonathan Martin with their pick. At 6-foot-6 and 304 pounds, Martin could be a big help toa team that featured the worst pair of tackles in the NFL.He was a 2nd Team All-American this season, and could filla need if Levi Brown departs as a free agent. Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’ However, Martin is known for his run blocking more thanpass protection, so he may not be exactly what theCardinals want.Should the Cardinals take Martin — or any other offensivelineman in the first round — it will be the first timethey’ve spent an early pick on the line since taking theaforementioned Levi Brown in 2007. And we all know how that turned out. Top Stories Comments Share
LISTEN: Ron Jaworski, ESPN NFL Analyst Comments Share Your browser does not support the audio element. Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Jaworski told Arizona Sports 620’s Burns and Gambo Friday that he believes Freeman is a talented quarterback who needs a new situation to succeed.“There was a stretch last year of about six games where I thought he was the best quarterback in the NFL. He was playing at a very high level,” Jaworksi said, before adding what he thinks went wrong for Freeman. “When you have an incredible, talented quarterback, you’ve got to coach him and you’ve got to coach him hard. And then you’ve got to coach other players around him. I don’t think that’s happening in Tampa Bay.”Unhappy with the benching, Freeman has reportedly requested a trade in the hopes of another starting opportunity in the NFL, and Jaworski thinks he’ll be a hot commodity. Among the teams potentially interested are the Cardinals, according to Jaworski, as Carson Palmer isn’t a long-term fix and the 25-year-old Freeman still has room to develop.“I would be very surprised if the Cardinals would not kick the tires,” he said. “But I will guarantee there will be a lot of teams calling (general manager) Mark Dominik in Tampa Bay about making a deal for Josh Freeman.” Freeman is an unrestricted free agent after this year and has an almost $10 million cap hit, which could prevent teams from trading for him in-season. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling While all the attention is on Tampa Bay Buccaneers rookie quarterback Mike Glennon this week, there’s still an unresolved situation with the player he overtook for the starting job, Josh Freeman. Only two years ago, Freeman was considered one of the top young quarterbacks in the league, set to be the Bucs’ franchise player for years to come. Now it seems that Tampa Bay has moved on from the fifth-year player, but there are still supporters of Freeman around the league, including ESPN’s Ron Jaworski.
Arizona would force a three and out on Houston’s first possession and then it was backup Drew Stanton’s turn to lead the offense. The 30-year-old, who hasn’t thrown a pass in a regular season game since 2010, went 4-for-4 for 37 yards on the Cardinals’ second drive which was capped by a 5-yard TD pass to Jaron Brown. Less than 12 minutes into the game, the Cardinals led 14-0.Houston fared even worse in its second offensive possession. After right tackle Derek Newton was flagged for a holding penalty, Ryan Fitzpatrick had a pass tipped at the line of scrimmage by linebacker Kevin Minter that was intercepted by Antonio Cromartie, who returned it to the Houston 13-yard line. Four plays later, Chandler Catanzaro kicked the first of three field goals on the night, connecting from 32 yards.The Texans’ best scoring opportunity of the game was halted by a beautiful one-handed interception from linebacker Marcus Benard at the Arizona 15-yard line with just :10 left in the first half.The Cardinals tacked on 12 more points in the fourth quarter to win going away.The Good: The Cardinals’ offense operated rather crisply regardless of what quarterback was at the controls. Palmer earned a perfect QB Rating of 158.3 in his one series of play. Stanton went 11-of-17 for 152 yards and a touchdown, and rookie Logan Thomas, who played the entire the second half, completed 11-of-12 passes for 113 yards and a 12-yard TD strike to former Arizona Wildcat Dan Buckner.In all, the Cardinals amassed 409 yards of offense on the night.Arizona’s receivers came to play as well. Twelve different Cardinals caught passes, led by rookie John Brown, who snared five balls for 87 yards. In all, the wide receivers combined for 22 catches for 269 yards and three touchdowns.The defense was pretty good as well. The Texans finished with only 172 total yards, turned the ball over twice and went 0-for-8 on third down conversions.Reserve linebacker JoJo Dickson closed the night’s scoring by sacking Houston backup quarterback Tom Savage in the end zone for a safety with just 1:28 remaining in the game.And rookie Chandler Catanzaro excelled in the kicking game. The former Clemson star hit all three of his field goal attempts (32, 28,25) and all three of his 33-yard extra points. In addition, he booted two of seven kickoffs for touchbacks. Houston’s average starting field position following Catanzaro kickoffs was the 14.8-yard line. Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires 0 Comments Share Top Stories GLENDALE, Ariz. — Well, that couldn’t have gone much better.The Arizona Cardinals’ first team offense marched down the field on a beautiful touchdown drive in its only possession of the night and the first team defense forced a three and out and intercepted a pass. It all contributed to a 32-0 victory over the Houston Texans at University of Phoenix Stadium.Carson Palmer was flawless in his limited action for the Cardinals. The veteran completed all five of his passes for 84 yards on an impressive nine-play touchdown drive culminating in a 7-yard scoring strike to Larry Fitzgerald. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo The Bad: For as good as the passing game was, the running game left much to be desired. The Cardinals got totaled just 81 yards on 37 carries (2.2 yards per attempt) on the night. Stat of the Game: The three Cardinals signal callers combined for a 138.8 QB Rating. Houston quarterbacks combined for a rating of 24.4.He Said It: “Overall, anytime you can shut out a football team, preseason or not, it’s an outstanding job by your defense and special teams.” — Cardinals head coach Bruce AriansWhat’s Next: The Cardinals will practice all week in Glendale, then head to Minneapolis to take on the Minnesota Vikings at TCF Bank Stadium next Saturday night. Kickoff is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Phoenix time and the game can be heard on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM starting with pregame coverage at 2:30 p.m. – / 16
The Cardinals’ run defense shut down Gurley in the first half, holding him to just two yards on four carries. Then the second half happened. On St. Louis’ second possession of the third quarter, Gurley ripped off runs of 23 and 12 yards. Two more totes got the Rams down to the Cardinals’ 18-yard line. On a 3rd-and-5, quarterback Nick Foles hit Stedman Bailey on an 18-yard touchdown pass to extend the Rams’ lead to 17-9.Gurley was just getting started. He reeled off a 52-yard jaunt early in the fourth quarter that set up a Foles-to-Tavon Austin touchdown strike and a 24-15 lead with 8:16 to go. The Cardinals would get into Rams’ territory with a chance to take the lead late in the fourth quarter, but a drive ended on downs at the St. Louis 43-yard-line. Arizona had all three of their timeouts, but Gurley made that a moot point by ripping off runs of 20 and 30 to seal the win.Gurley could have scored on the 30-yarder, but instead slowed down and stayed in bounds to kill the clock and any remaining Arizona hope.“I was just being a smart player and made the right decision,” he said. “I didn’t want to go out of bounds and hold onto the ball. I could have easily scored, but no, I was just trying to get the win.” Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo Pretty heady stuff for a player who was seeing extended action for the first time and sat out most of his junior year at Georgia with a knee injury. Foles lauded his young teammate for his smarts.“That was a veteran move right there, especially it being possibly his first NFL touchdown on a run like that in a situation like that,” he said. “It shows you that he is a team guy first and that is what you want. “I was proud of him today for coming out and playing the way he did.”St. Louis head coach Jeff Fisher felt the same way.“It’s totally unselfish,” Fisher stated. “Beyond that, for a rookie to have the presence of mind to do that, it says a lot for his understanding of this game and putting games away. Three times he had carries where he stayed inbounds and on two of them, he went down.”Arizona came into the game yielding an average of just 88 yards rushing through the season’s first three weeks. Gurley piled up 106 yards in the fourth quarter alone. The Cardinals were impressed, but pinned a lot of the rookie’s success on their own failings.“He’s a great player, a physical player, but we need to get in our gaps,” safety Deone Bucannon said. “Honestly that’s all it is. Every back is a big, physical back, it’s just about being mentally sound and understanding where we need to be.” Safety Rashad Johnson echoed those sentiments.“A lot of it was self-inflicted. The plays that they made were assignment issues that we had,” he said. “In the run game, in the second half — we’d done a great job in the first half. In the second half, it seemed like we were trying to make big plays instead of just doing our jobs up front.“For myself, I have a high standard, so it was just a lack of focus in the second half.” – / 27 Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling GLENDALE, Ariz. — Rookie running back Todd Gurley’s NFL debut didn’t go as well as he would have hoped last week.The first-round pick out of Georgia ran for just nine yards on six carries in a loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.What a difference a week can make.Gurley rumbled for 146 yards on 19 carries, including some big back-breaking runs in the later stages of the St. Louis Rams’ 24-22 win over the Arizona Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires St. Louis Rams running back Todd Gurley (30) eludes the reach of Arizona Cardinals outside linebacker LaMarr Woodley (56) during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Oct. 4, 2015, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri) 0 Comments Share Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact
0 Comments Share Top Stories The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo “I think it’s long history,” Arians said. “It’s not about that any more. It’s about the game this week.”Perhaps sensing the headlines he was creating with his statements, Brown was also quick to heap praise on Palmer.“I like Carson Palmer personally,” Brown told Marvez. “I did when he was here. I regret it broke apart the way it did. I don’t want him to beat us any more than he wants us to beat him. I’m sure that will be in the back of his mind. But other than that, I wish him well.“I look at him play and I see the player that we had when he was here. When he’s on and playing the way he can play, he is a big-time winning quarterback.”Follow Craig Morgan on Twitter TEMPE, Ariz. — Cincinnati Bengals owner Mike Brown stirred the pot ahead of Sunday’s game against Arizona and his former quarterback when he questioned Carson Palmer’s honesty. When given the chance to respond on Wednesday, Palmer poured little more than cold water into the stew.“I’m not going to get into a he said, she said situation with Mike Brown,” Palmer said. “We obviously disagreed and it ended in a very colorful, heated argument. We disagree with each other and that’s how it ended, but now is not the time or place to get into what he said.” “Right now, he’s in a very comfortable place with a lot of guys he trusts,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said. “When you’re that way as a quarterback you’re going to play pretty well.”Palmer acknowledged that facing the Bengals is not just another game after spending the first seven years of his career there, but when given another chance to tell his side of the story, Palmer repeated the same thing he’s said since arriving in Arizona — that he would do so at the appropriate time.When asked when that time might be, Palmer said: “Not in Week 11. Myself and this team are focused on Week 11. Not 2011.”Bengals coach Marvin Lewis said he has positive memories of Palmer, who “left a lot to build on here.” Aside from some basic praise of Palmer’s play, however, Lewis didn’t want to talk much about Palmer when he spoke to Arizona media members on a conference call Wednesday.“Carson plays for the Cardinals now, alright?” he said. “We shouldn’t dwell on Carson. He’s a fine player. We drafted him No. 1 overall. Outstanding player here — and person.”The Bengals aren’t exactly suffering at the quarterback position in Palmer’s absence. Andy Dalton, 28, ranks ninth in the NFL in passing yards (2,423), ninth in TDs (18) and fourth in passer rating at (104.6). Dalton took over in the 2011 season while Palmer was holding out after a trade request in the offseason that led the Bengals to place him on the reserve/did not report list. “I had so many other things I was worried about. I was trying to learn so I wouldn’t say it was awkward,” said Dalton, who has cut down on the interceptions that plagued the first four years of his career. “It was just one of those things that you thought, in the back of your mind, ‘What if he eventually just shows up one day?’ and things would be different, but it all worked out.”Palmer has already played the Bengals since leaving Cincinnati. The Bengals beat the visiting Raiders, 34-10, on Nov. 25, 2012 when Palmer completed 19-of-34 passes for 146 yards, a TD and an interception for Oakland. Palmer was also eager to escape Oakland after two seasons, but his career has been revitalized since coming to Arizona and playing in Arians’ offense.“He just looks relaxed and comfortable and confident and those are some goals that every quarterback has,” Cardinals backup QB Drew Stanton said. “He has this perfect storm coming together. He’s mature enough to handle all of the pressure that comes his way, but he also has a comfort level you pray for because he’s seen everything there is to see.”Arians thinks the Bengals angle is being forced this week by media. Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling In an interview with FOX Sports’ Alex Marvez, Brown said he was disappointed with the way Palmer’s Bengals tenure ended. He said Palmer expressed doubts about the longevity of his career as he tried to force a trade out of Cincinnati in 2011.“We sat here in the office on a couple of occasions and argued about what the future should be for him and us,” Brown told Marvez. “Whether he really believed it or not, I rather doubt, but my argument then with him was, ‘You’re a top quarterback and you’ve got real productive years in front of you.’“He would say to me, ‘Oh no. I’m all beat up. I’ll be lucky to play another year or two,’ which I didn’t take to heart.”The Bengals eventually traded Palmer to Oakland in the middle of the 2011 season for first- and second-round draft picks. By now, it should be clear to everyone that Palmer had more than a year or two left in the tank.Through nine games, Palmer, 35, ranks fourth in the NFL in passing yards (2,749), second in touchdowns (23) and second in passer rating (108) as the Cardinals (7-2) take on the Bengals (8-1) Sunday night at University of Phoenix Stadium. His name has even entered the MVP discussion. Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact
TEMPE, Ariz. — Pitiful offense from the air to the ground, from first down to third, led the Arizona Cardinals down this path.Head coach Steve Wilks said it was his decision Friday to fire offensive coordinator Mike McCoy and replace him with quarterbacks coach Byron Leftwich as the Cardinals ranked last or second-to-last in most key offensive categories through their seventh game of the year.“As the head coach it’s my responsibility to make these tough decisions and try to do everything I can to make sure that I have the right personnel — most importantly the right coaches — in the right positions,” Wilks said. “I felt we needed a change. Comments Share Johnson has accumulated 335 rushing yards to this point, but even more flummoxing has been his disappearance in the passing game, something Arians openly criticized on the TD Fantasy Podcast a month ago. Targeted just 30 times in seven weeks of play, Johnson has 20 catches and 133 receiving yards.“With Byron being here before and being a part of that and understanding some of the success he’s had in the past, hopefully we can tap back on to some of the things David was doing in the past,” Wilks said.And with that, Wilks made his most difficult head coaching decision after Arizona’s 1-6 start. He didn’t shy away from a question about whether the McCoy firing was the first of many changes to come.Wilks will continue to evaluate coaches and players every week, he said.Asked if Leftwich’s title as the new offensive coordinator was permanent or if it came with an interim tag, the head coach had this to say:“Right now it’s hard to say anybody is going to be permanent.” FILE – In this Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, file photo, Arizona Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen (3) talks with quarterbacks coach Byron Leftwich, right, during the second half of an NFL football game against the Chicago Bears in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ralph Freso, File) The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo “We wasn’t productive enough. Let’s just say that. That may be an understatement.”But in considering the production, the offensive coordinator swap comes down to the individual players, too.Star running back David Johnson is averaging 3.2 yards per carry seven games after inking a long-term contract extension. Rookie quarterback Josh Rosen was sacked six times Thursday and turned the ball over five times in a 45-10 loss to the Denver Broncos, a game that the team hopes ends the crescendo of what looks like a threat to both his literal health and developmental health.Related LinksThe Cardinals offense under fired OC Mike McCoy: By the numbersArizona Cardinals fire OC Mike McCoy, promote Byron LeftwichWhat to know about new Cardinals offensive coordinator Byron LeftwichArians on TD Fantasy Podcast: Cards are improperly using David JohnsonRosen’s quarterback rating was the second-worst of any game played across the NFL so far this season, behind only a performance from the Bills’ Nathan Peterman in Week 1.For the season, he is completing 55 percent of his passes, has thrown three touchdowns to go with five interceptions and has lost three fumbles.Leftwich, Wilks hopes, can use his 10 years of NFL quarterbacking experience to connect with the 10th overall draft pick.It starts with protecting Rosen.Wilks admitted a banged up offensive line that was already struggling to protect the rookie may need to give more max-protection looks with help from tight ends and fullbacks. Arizona will consider using Rosen’s athleticism to run boot-legs and take pressure off the offensive line. Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Due to protection issues, Wilks cited the inability of Rosen to go through his progressions as a key part in making the coordinator switch.The head coach, who said he left play-calling duties to McCoy and will do the same for Leftwich, has already talked to his new OC about taking the thinking away from Rosen.It’s not that McCoy put too much on Rosen, an intellectual player who Wilks again praised for being able to digest a lot.It’s that Wilks doesn’t want things to get lost in translation.Because overhauling the playbook at this point is out of the question, Leftwich will calls plays out of the same playbook that was constructed by McCoy heading into 2018. But Wilks wants to put Rosen — and his teammates — in better positions to succeed.“It’s not the mere fact of making it easier,” he said when asked if the team will pull back things to help Rosen. “And I told Byron this this morning. Josh is a very smart and intelligent guy. He can handle a lot.“I think it’s clarity. That’s what we need, and we didn’t have that.”Meanwhile, Arizona will continue searching for the production from Johnson that saw him chase the 1,000-1,000 rushing and receiving yard marks in 2016. Leftwich, a holdover from former coach Bruce Arians’ staff, saw first-hand how the Cardinals utilized the running back in both the run and pass games under the previous regime. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Top Stories Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact
Go back to the e-newsletterA uniquely holistic study by MyTravelResearch, Luxperience and Executive PA magazine has been expanded to include the role of personal and executive assistants in the luxury travel decision-making process.In-depth research into the luxury travel sector that was started in 2015 has been expanded so that travel buyers and suppliers can better understand the role of executive personal assistants on the path to purchase among high-end travel consumers.Co-founder of MyTravelResearch, Carolyn Childs, said that members of the Australian edition of Executive PA magazine would be invited to complete the survey. “It will be the most holistic and comprehensive analysis of the high-end travel sector ever done in Asia Pacific,” said Childs.Russell Peacock, Chairman of Executive PA magazine, said that the scope of study by the MyTravelResearch/Luxperience partnership had been expanded to include input from Executive PA and its readers. The input will likely provide revealing insights into the “influential and indispensable” role of executive assistants, said Peacock. “This is indicative of the increasing focus on meetings, events and executive travel in the luxury space,” he said.The on-going research is based on in-depth one-on-one interviews, online surveys, and an expert analysis of issues and trends in the sector by Childs.“Our initial research says that the travel industry needs to stop looking at high end travel consumers as homogenous,” said Childs. She has identified multiple types of luxury travel consumer. There are ‘hedonists’, ‘jet setters’, ‘philanthropists’, ‘lotus eaters’, and more.Peacock noted that executive assistants often have meetings and travel budgets ranging from $10,000 to $2 million. “As businesses have looked to make savings and become more cost efficient in the past eight years, more responsibility and power has been handed to EAs and PAs in an effort to plug the gaps due to reductions in manpower,” he said.Michelle Papas of Luxperience added: “With these kind of budgets, a clear understanding of how executive and personal assistants work will boost the high-end travel sector. We will continue to work with partners to better inform the industry on the needs of the various market sectors as they affect luxury travel.”The final report will be available to purchase as a whole or in modular segments addressing different themes, aspects and sectors within luxury travel.The report is scheduled for publication by September, when Luxperience 2016 takes place in Sydney.“With the report in hand, people serving the lux sector will be able to turn insights into profitable action,” said Childs.Go back to the e-newsletter
Go back to the e-newsletterEtihad Airways’ much-anticipated A380 touched down in Melbourne last week, beginning a new era of luxury travel on the Melbourne-Abu Dhabi and Melbourne-London routes.The A380 features The Residence, the world’s first three-room private suite on a commercial aircraft, as well as modern innovations in all cabins.The inaugural Abu Dhabi-Melbourne A380 flight – EY460 – departed Abu Dhabi Airport at 10.15pm and was scheduled to arrive at Melbourne Airport at 5.45pm on 2 June. The aircraft, in the airline’s eye-catching Facets of Abu Dhabi livery, was welcomed to the Victorian capital by a traditional water cannon salute.The flagship superjumbo will operate one of the airline’s twice-daily flights between Melbourne and Abu Dhabi. It will replace one of the three-class Boeing 777-300ER aircraft currently deployed on the route.Etihad Airways Senior Vice President of Marketing, Shane O’Hare, said: “Today marks another major milestone for Etihad Airways in Australia.“With Melbourne joining our A380 network, Australia is the only country in our global network with daily A380 services to two cities – Melbourne and Sydney. Deploying our latest technology aircraft and class-leading product and service to Australia recognises its importance to our business and the strong demand from Australian travellers for premium travel experiences.“From the product and service innovations in every cabin to our inspired approach to hospitality, the Etihad Airways A380 offers touches of luxury to every guest and sets the benchmark for inflight comfort, entertainment, connectivity and service. As an added bonus for guests whose destination is London, we now offer the convenience and class-leading comfort of an all-A380 service all the way.”The A380 will increase the total number of two-way seats on the Melbourne-Abu Dhabi route by 26 per cent to more than 11,500 seats per week.Mr O’Hare said this would ease the capacity constraints on the Melbourne-Abu Dhabi, particularly for business and premium leisure travel.“Our Abu Dhabi to Melbourne services generate very high seat load factors year-round. The A380, with 70 seats in business class, enables us to better meet the demand we have for our premium cabins and will boost our market share of this important segment.”Lyell Strambi, CEO Melbourne Airport, said: “We are delighted to welcome Etihad’s flagship service, the Airbus A380, to Melbourne Airport. Our partnership with Etihad continues to go from strength to strength since the airline’s arrival to Melbourne Airport in 2009. Last year we were thrilled by the introduction of a second daily service between Melbourne and Abu Dhabi and a new Premium Lounge opened at Melbourne Airport last month. Now, capacity has been increased again with the upgauge to an A380, replacing one of the airline’s daily 777 services.“Entrenched in Melbourne life, particularly in our sporting culture, Etihad’s name looms large over our city’s second biggest stadium and the airline is the principal partner of the Melbourne City Football Club. The Melbourne to Abu Dhabi route is an important connector for Victorians to Europe with this market already experiencing considerable growth since Etihad’s second daily service commenced last August.“The arrival of Etihad’s A380 is a great show of commitment to Melbourne and Victoria by this important airline partner and plays an important part in meeting our expected growth in passenger numbers.”Etihad Airways’ A380 carries 496 passengers in a four-class configuration: The Residence, First Apartments, Business Studios and Economy Smart Seats.The Residence, an ultra-exclusive private three-room suite, is unique to Etihad Airways. Measuring 11.5 square metres in total area, it is located on the forward upper deck of the A380 and is available for single or double occupancy.Features include a living room, separate en suite shower room and a double bedroom. It has a large 32” LCD monitor in the living room and a separate 24” version in the bedroom.Its exclusive hospitality offering includes a personal Butler, trained at the world-renowned Savoy Butler Academy in London and dedicated to meeting the needs of discerning guests. An on board Chef complements the Butler service, offering a bespoke, made-to-order dining experience.There are nine First Apartments in First Class. These are private living spaces featuring a reclining lounge chair and an ottoman, upholstered in the finest quality Poltrona Frau leather. The ottoman opens up to become a separate 80.5” long fully flat bed. In addition, each First Apartment has a 24” LCD TV monitor, a chilled mini bar and personal vanity unit. A fully equipped shower room is available for the exclusive use of First Apartment guests.Seventy Business Studios are located on the upper deck of the A380, all offering direct aisle access, a fully flat bed of up to 80.5” long, and an increase of 20 per cent in personal space. Upholstered in Poltrona Frau leather, the Business Studio is equipped with an in-seat massage and a pneumatic cushion control system.The Lobby, a luxurious lounge located between the First Class and Business Class cabins, features two comfortable leather sofas and a staffed bar serving a selection of snacks and refreshments.Guests in all cabins enjoy the latest Panasonic eX3 entertainment system with more than 750 hours of on demand entertainment, live TV news and sport channels, improved gaming, and high definition screens across all cabins. The A380 has full mobile and Wi-Fi service, with USB and power points at every seat.The airline’s hospitality offerings include services such as Flying Nannies and onboard Food and Beverage Managers.A Flying Nanny, trained by the Norland College in the UK, is on board every B787 Dreamliner flight to provide assistance to families travelling with young children.Food and Beverage Managers guide guests in Business Class through the extensive à la carte and dine anytime options and provide recommendations on the ideal beverage to accompany their meal choice.Etihad Airways’ twice-daily service from Melbourne provides travellers from Victoria access to more than 900 weekly connections in 50 markets across the Gulf region, the Middle East, Africa and Europe.Within Australia and to New Zealand, Etihad Airways codeshares on Virgin Australia and Air New Zealand flights from Melbourne to Adelaide, Auckland, Brisbane, Cairns, Canberra, Christchurch, Coffs Harbour, Darwin, Gold Coast, Hamilton Island, Hobart, Kalgoorlie, Launceston, Mildura, Newcastle, Perth, Queenstown, Sunshine Coast, Sydney, and Wellington.Etihad Airways commenced daily services to Melbourne on 29 March 2009. It added a second daily flight to the route on 1 August 2015, making it the only airline with double daily nonstop services between Melbourne and the United Arab Emirates.The commencement of A380 services to Melbourne complements the airline’s recently opened Premium Lounge at Melbourne Airport. The 800-square-metre space is the airline’s largest airport lounge outside its Abu Dhabi home base. It also features a separate private lounge for the exclusive use of guests travelling in The Residence.Go back to the e-newsletter
Go back to the e-newsletterThe opening of the boutique five-star Milaidhoo Island Maldives this November promises guests a new chapter of barefoot island living on its tiny 300m-by-180m island set in the heart of a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in the Baa Atoll region of the Maldives.At Milaidhoo barefoot informality is at the very heart of the island’s ethos where selfie-sticks and drones are not encouraged. Perfectly located to offer the absolute best of the Maldives to its discerning guests, Milaidhoo offers a return to a classic, relaxed Maldivian holiday style on a tiny island with deep soft white sand beaches and a vibrant coral reef where dolphins, whale sharks and manta rays are visitors – a benefit of being in a protected marine area.This private island is reached by a scenic 30-minute seaplane flight from Male International Airport. Standing on stilts over the lagoon are 30 spacious overwater villas (245 square metres) and hidden among the tropical greenery are 20 villas on the beach (290 square metres). All villas have large private freshwater swimming pools and an island host to attend to the guests’ every whim.Designed by local architect Mohamed Shafeeq, the resort’s 50 villas have been made using materials and fittings custom-made for Milaidhoo in a way that epitomises the true contemporary Maldives style. Spacious outdoor living is the key phrase: the villas open up 180-degrees to allow the natural beauty of the Maldives to become part of the room.Milaidhoo is the only resort in the atoll that has been created specifically with couples in mind, although children aged nine and above are welcomed. It further differentiates itself with its ‘Milaidhoo Moments’: a collection of exclusive activities for the luxury traveller seeking meaningful and memorable experiences. Milaidhoo will offer its guests access to Hanifaru Bay, a marine protected area, which attracts the largest seasonal groupings of manta rays in the world and is also one of the best places to go whale shark spotting in the Maldives.Gourmands will feel at home in Milaidhoo’s three restaurants and two bars; the resort’s signature restaurant is set over the water and shaped like three traditional Maldivian sailing boats. Unique for the Maldives, it will offer a modern interpretation of ‘island influenced’ cuisine. Cocktails will be fresh, creative and on point while the wine list has been designed to pique the interest of wine-lovers with a choice of much-loved classics alongside a selection of wines from lesser-known boutique wine makers. All villas have their own wine fridge where guests can keep their personal favourites.The island’s spa consists of four treatment suites set on stilts over the lagoon where guests will also enjoy daily complimentary yoga and meditation classes on the custom-built pavilion. Beaches, snorkelling on coral reefs, diving, water sports, fishing and cultural excursions to nearby islands and sandbanks will create stories that guests will want to tell forever.Go back to the e-newsletter
Go back to the e-newsletterJamala Wildlife Lodge already offers an experience like no other, featuring deluxe accommodation combined with unforgettable animal encounters, five-star dining and world class tours of the National Zoo & Aquarium.This winter Jamala will be bringing the popular Truffle Safari back for another year, offering guests stays in any uShaka Lodge room on a Tuesday night between June and August (excluding school holidays). This gives overnighters the opportunity to enjoy all of the perks of a stay at Jamala – in addition to a Canberra-exclusive experience at a nearby trufferie.Guests will travel to the Truffle Farm where they will be taken on a private tour with the owner, Jayson Mesman, and then treated to a three-course truffle inspired lunch, prepared by AHA Australian Chef of the Year, Damian Brabender.In addition to the Truffle Safari, Jamala will also be unveiling a partnership with the National Gallery of Australia and their never before seen Cartier Exhibition. Guests staying in any uShaka Lodge room on a Wednesday night between 1 May and 22 July will receive free tickets to the glittering Cartier Exhibition, including a tour andbeautiful catalogue to take away from the event.The ultimate luxury experienceWhy not enjoy both luxury packages at the same time, creating the ultimate Canberra winter experience? Guests booking in to a uShaka Lodge room for a consecutive Tuesday and Wednesday night during the dates above will get to experience both the Truffle Safari and the Cartier packages, as well as enjoying a 10 per cent discount!Go back to the e-newsletter
Go back to the e-newsletterTauck Australia has announced the launch of an App across all Tauck’s tours, designed to enhance the experience for clients and enable them to make the most of their Tauck journey from start to finish.Available once full payment has been made, this complimentary tool will provide clients with a list of area activities to enjoy if they have chosen to stay at the selected Tauck hotel before or after their itinerary, or during their free time while on tour. App features include:Client’s personal travel details in one convenient place, accessible only to them.Tauck Favourites: These include places to dine and visit during free time with information curated by Tauck experts who know destinations inside out. Clients will be able to check out Tauck’s top picks before their journey begins.The ability to explore free time activities from Fodor’s Travel, a great source for local gems from restaurants to museums, sights and places to experience local traditions.Local maps pinned with key points of interest.Client’s daily Tauck itinerary.Weather for current and upcoming destinations.Ability to view local time and the time back home.Tauck’s currency conversion tool.The Tauck App is easy to install. Once full payment has been made, Tauck will notify the client that the app is available to download.From this point, all the client will need to do is visit their favourite App store, download the App, and then register using their Tauck reservation number.The Tauck App is only accessible to guests with a Tauck Reservation number.To learn more about the app, click here. Go back to the e-newsletter
Go back to the enewsletterViking this week signed a memorandum of understanding with China Merchants Shekou, which represents China Merchants Group. The memorandum describes a joint venture between both companies which aims to build a cruise line with worldwide offerings for the Chinese cruise market.The wide-ranging partnership will include product development and sales and marketing. China Merchants Group’s shipbuilding subsidiaries will design and build new ocean cruise ships for the Chinese market as part of the joint venture.“China is a dynamic outbound tourism market, and we are pleased to be partnering with China Merchants Group in this joint venture to drive the development of the cruise industry. We see Viking’s way of cruising less as a trip and more as a lifestyle,” said Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking.“For more than 20 years, we have led the industry in developing a fleet of ships and a range of cruise itineraries that we believe provide guests with the most comfortable and enriching way to explore the world. Our partnership with China Merchants Group will allow us to bring this Viking travel lifestyle to more Chinese travellers more quickly, satisfying the Chinese market’s unmet demand for a greater choice of sophisticated travel.”Gangfeng Fu, President of China Merchants Group, said: “China Merchants Group treasures this cooperation with Viking. This is a full-scale, multi-dimensional cooperation that covers all three main business sectors of China Merchants group.”“Viking has gained tremendous experience in cruise operations and branding strategies during its 20 years of rapid growth. We sincerely hope that the alliance of the two powerful brands will create synergies and innovative business models that will lead the cooperation into a market-leading cruise brand,” Fu added.Viking operates a current fleet of 78 vessels and offers scenic cruising on rivers and oceans worldwide. China has been a part of Viking’s destination portfolio since 2003, and since setting up local operations there in 2016, the company has seen a strong increase in profits for its European river cruise tailored to Chinese-speaking guests.Lead image: Viking Chairman Torstein Hagen with President of China Merchants Group, Gangfeng Fu, after signing a MOU to form a joint venture to build a cruise line for the Chinese cruise market.Go back to the enewsletter
The Rams made the move from St. Louis to sunny Los Angeles, California this off season, and with the move comes some new uniforms.Adam Schefter tweeted a peek at the new threads last night.Rams’ new uniforms for this season: pic.twitter.com/eXB58bbM27— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 3, 2017 In an effort to connect with their new fans in LA, the Rams crowdsourced their uniform design a bit by allowing fans to provide some feedback on whether the new uniforms design should feature one or two stripes on the pants and white or navy face masks for the helmets. Over 90,000 fans responded with their opinions in the last 48 hours of voting with a design very similar to their throwback look the team wore from 1964-1972.The Rams wore a similar helmet design for a throwback look last season, and fans spoke out wanting it to be their permanent look.Their official website notes that for their first season back in LA, the Rams will wear white uniforms for their home games, instead of the traditional dark colored uniforms the home team normally wears while the away teams wear white.This may not the be the last of the changes coming to the team, as the team is “currently exploring a full rebrand, including new uniforms that will be unveiled in 2019 to coincide with the opening of the new LA Stadium and Entertainment District at Hollywood Park,” the website adds.See more on the new unis via the Rams official release. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Sponsored By Connatix
AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Sponsored By Connatix ACC (6)Florida StateLouisvilleMiamiNorth CarolinaVirginia TechWake ForestBig Ten (5)MarylandMichiganMinnesotaNorthwesternWisconsinBig 12 (4)BaylorKansas StateOklahoma StateWest VirginiaPac-12 (1)USCSEC (5)ArkansasFloridaKentuckySouth CarolinaVanderbiltAt the Group of 5 and FCS level is where double-dipping in December and March is the hallmark of a seriously good year on campus. Finishing at or near the top of your conference standings in a requirement for reaching a bowl game or the FCS playoffs, and a conference tournament championship is a prerequisite for reaching the Big Dance.Big Sky (1)North DakotaColonial Athletic Association (1)VillanovaConference USA (1)Middle TennesseeIvy League (1)*PrincetonMEAC (1)*North Carolina CentralMissouri Valley (1)South Dakota StateOhio Valley (1)Jacksonville StateSun Belt (1)Troy(*) – The Ivy League does not participate in the FCS playoffs, but Princeton shared for the Ivy football title and ran through the Ivy basketball season undefeated. North Carolina Central participated in the Celebration Bowl instead of the FCS playoffs after winning the MEAC football crown.So while 21 of the 65 (32.3%) Power 5 programs double-dipped in both major postseasons, only eight of the 199 (4.02%) Group of 5/FCS programs reached the playoffs and/or won their conference in football and reached the Big Dance.A congratulations are in order to all who went bowling and dancing, but let’s give an extra candle on the cake to the mid- and low-majors. The NCAA Tournament is now here (we’ll have our FootballScoop bracket up and running today) and, as we do here in this football-centric corner of the universe, it’s time to take a look at which teams reached the postseason in the two big revenue sports. It’s also known as Some ADs Favorite Page On The Entire Internet.Let’s break it down by groups.The largest number of gridiron-hardwood double-dippers comes from the Power 5 because, obviously, the Power 5 has the lowest degree of difficulty for grabbing a bowl slot and an at-large tournament bid considering those five conferences sucked up 44.2 percent of the available 172 postseason bids (80 FBS bowl bids plus 24 FCS postseason bids plus the 68-team tournament). Of the Power 5, the ACC had the best all-around year, sending 42.9 percent of its roster to both postseasons, followed closely by the Big 12’s 40 percent. The Pac-12, usually strong in both sports, checks in uncharacteristically dead last — and the Conference of Champions should consider itself fortunate considering USC is a No. 11 seed slated to a play-in game.On an individual school level, Wisconsin has seen its streak of bowl trips and tournament bids extended to 15 straight years.
Dirk Koetter: “I didn’t look at that stuff during the season.”As ESPN’s Kevin Seifert detailed, the data arrived after coaching staffs had generally wrapped the previous game up and moved on to the next one, it provided information only on each staff’s own players and not future opponents, and, most importantly, it didn’t provide information coaches couldn’t see with their own two eyes.“If you’re watching tape,” Koetter said, “[you can see] he’s about 6 yards off, he’s about 5 yards off. He’s pressing. He’s in cloud corner. You can see it.”Sean Payton testified that the RFID data is revolutionary in helping coaches prevent players from over-working themselves into injury during practice, the technology — or, at least, the NFL’s competition committee won’t let the technology — has paired itself with demand.Read the full story here. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Sponsored By Connatix Last season, the NFL implanted RFID (Radio-Frequency Identification) chips in each player’s shoulder pads. Those RFID chips tracked how fast each player ran and where he ran — for instance, “Julio Jones ran 16 miles per hour until Matt Ryan released the pass, when he increased his speed to 17.5 mph.”The data was state-of-the-art specific, the types of which was only a dream just a few short years ago.The league then gave each week’s data to its 32 coaching staffs. And what did they do with it?Dan Quinn: “Nothing.”