ΤΟΥΡΙΣΜΟΣ
Photo source: Condor

Photo source: Condor

German leisure airline Condor on April 18 will launch its 2022 summer schedule that includes flights from eight airports in Germany plus Austria and Switzerland to a number of holiday destinations in Greece including Athens.

The airline this year will also significantly expand its program with flights to North America and Canada this summer.

From Athens, in cooperation with Lufthansa via Frankfurt, Condor will fly to to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston and New York.

Condor will fly directly this summer from Athens to Düsseldorf (four times a week) and Leipzig (twice a week).

The airline has also announced a partnership with Greek airline SKY express and will be expanding its route network in Greece from July.

Condor is represented in Greece and Cyprus by Discover the World.

Follow GTP Headlines on Google News to keep up to date with all the latest on tourism and travel in Greece. ΠΗΓΗ GTP

ΤΟΥΡΙΣΜΟΣ

Photo © BV Consulting

The BlueVillas Collection Group recently announced the launch of BV Consulting, a performance-focused boutique management firm based in Athens.

Exclusively working with luxury villas, BV Consulting offers services regarding the management, development, consulting, and investment of luxury houses and residences all around Greece.

“Working for many years with some of the fastest-growing and most promising companies in Greece and worldwide, we have created a list of more than 150 criteria that are equal to those of international 5-star properties,” says the management of BV Consulting.

The company provides complete and fully measurable management solutions delivering increasing profits, brand recognition, and continuous value creation for their partners’ assets.

BV Consulting is part of the BlueVillas Collection Group which also includes the BlueVillas hospitality company and BlissTravel, the first host travel agency in Greece.

BlueVillas

Photo © BlueVillas

BlueVillas is a Greek hospitality company that specializes in luxury villa management and on-site operation services.

Founded by Christos Gkekas in 2011, the company has over 450 carefully selected luxury properties on selected Greek islands and mainland destinations such as Mykonos, Santorini, Paros, Antiparos, Crete, Peloponnese, Aegean, and Ionian islands.

BlueVillas will soon will expand worldwide to exotic destinations like Ibiza and Tulum.

BlissTravel

Photo © BlissTravel

The first host travel agency in Greece, BlissTravel was formed by a group of like-minded travel designers. the company focuses on encouraging its independent travel advisors and providing them with the training, marketing material, tools and platforms to assist them in maximizing their client service.

Since 2020, BlissTravel has managed to assemble a strong team of travel designers and conduct many successful trips both inside and outside the Greek borders.

Follow GTP Headlines on Google News to keep up to date with all the latest on tourism and travel in Greece. ΠΗΓΗ GTP

ΤΟΥΡΙΣΜΟΣ

Photo source: TUI Group (© Gregorschläger)

Leisure travel giant TUI Group is moving full speed ahead with plans to bring more than 3 million visitors to Greece this year – much earlier than ever before and exceeding pre-Covid 2019 levels.

Earlier this week on Crete, the company named a TUI fly Boeing 737-8 “Heraklion” after the island’s capital, where the group does business.

Irini Vasiliou, the godmother of the TUI fly “Heraklion” Boeing 737-8 aircraft. Photo source: TUI Group (© Gregorschläger)

On Sunday, also in Heraklion, TUI Cruises CEO Wybcke Meier launched the company’s “Mein Schiff 5” cruise ship with 1,650 guests which departed for a cruise to the Greek islands marking the start of the homeporting season.

In the meantime, TUI Fly Managing Director Oliver Lackmann said the group had added 62 new flights from Germany in April to Crete, Rhodes, Corfu, Kos and the Peloponnese. TUI will run some 40,000 flights to 19 Greek airports this year. About one-third of TUI fly flights from Germany to Greece will fly to the airports of Crete, Rhodes, Corfu, Kos and the Peloponnese. Lackmann added that apart from the daily TUI flights from Germany, TUI aircraft will fly to Greek destinations from Great Britain, Belgium, France, the Scandinavian countries and the Netherlands. 

“This year, we offer a total of about 40,000 flights to 19 Greek airports. 9,000 take-offs and landings are planned throughout Europe from and to Crete alone. However, we have scheduled flights to smaller destinations such as Samos, Skiathos and Zakynthos,” he said.

Photo source: TUI Group (© Gregorschläger)

The TUI aircraft naming ceremony together with the cruise departure marked the dynamic launch of this year’s tourism season for TUI, which is the leading  tour operator on the Greek market expanding it services this year more than ever before.

Additionally, TUI has included more than 4,500 hotels at 24 destinations in its packages for Greece and holds a strong position in the local hotel sector with about 40 hotels operating under the TUI brand, including Robinson, TUI Magic Life, TUI Blue, TUI Suneo and TUI Kids Clubs. It has also added this year two 5-star hotels: the TUI Blue Sensatori Atlantica Caldera Palace on Crete and the TUI Blue Sensatori Atlantica Dreams Resort on Rhodes.

Greek Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias. Photo source: TUI (© Gregorschläger)

Greek Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias. Photo source: TUI (© Gregorschläger)

“We are delighted that TUI is aiming for a record number of visitors with over 3 million to Greece,” said Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias, adding that travelers with TUI will be coming to Greece four weeks earlier this year.

“We have an excellent cooperation and a relationship of trust with TUI for more than five decades. We are optimistic and look forward to a successful tourism season,” he said.

Follow GTP Headlines on Google News to keep up to date with all the latest on tourism and travel in Greece. ΠΗΓΗ GTP

ΤΟΥΡΙΣΜΟΣ

As part of its drive to capitalize on dozens of public assets, the Public Properties Company (ETAD) announced this week that it had finalized a concession deal for the former Xenia Hotel in Edessa, Central Macedonia, with construction firm Elterga.

More specifically, ETAD CEO Stefanos Vlastos and Elterga President and Managing Director Paraskevas Tsampras signed the agreement which applies for a period of 30 years with the option to extend by an additional 20 years.

The Edessa property belonged to the national Xenia hotel chain, operated by the Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO).

The aim, said Vlastos, is to convert the Xenia into a modern hotel unit that will contribute to the tourist development of Edessa and the wider region of Central Macedonia. 

The investment – up on the going price up by 55 percent – is budgeted at more than 3.5 million euros and foresees the facility’s reconstruction into a 4-star or above hotel with a capacity of 40 rooms, restaurant, gym, spa, indoor and outdoor pools.

“After years of neglect, today we managed to take the first step, to give new lease on life to the Xenia Edessa for the benefit of the city. We are particularly pleased that through our cooperation with a group of companies experienced in the field of hotels and construction we will contribute to its revival and significantly stimulate the tourist and economic development of the region,” said Vlastos.

“We are very pleased as the signing of the contract gives us the opportunity to proceed with the reconstruction of an important property of great architectural value that is a landmark for the city of Edessa,” said Tsampras.

The Edessa Xenia was constructed in 1963 by architect Iason Rizos and is located in the heart of Macedonia near the Kaimaktsalan Ski Center, Lake Agra and the traditional settlement of Agios Athanasios.

Xenia history

From 1950 to 1974, the GNTO carried out a program of hotel and motel construction to boost Greece’s tourism development.

The Xenia hotels were known by their high quality and aesthetics and constructed within the framework of a tourism policy that aimed for Greece’s economic development.

Built in prime locations, they had an ideal positioning, combined indoor with open-air spaces, internal patios and courtyards, large windows, balconies that offered the best views of each location.

Over 40 “Xenias” constituted a unique network of complexes that boasted excellent architecture and construction.

Follow GTP Headlines on Google News to keep up to date with all the latest on tourism and travel in Greece. ΠΗΓΗ GTP

ΤΟΥΡΙΣΜΟΣ

The Lighthouse Athens Hotel, a member of Brown Hotels, officially opened its doors and is welcoming visitors to the center of the Greek capital.

Located on Omonia Square, one of the city’s main squares, the hotel features 220 fully equipped rooms that combine baroque style with modern urban elements and pioneering design.

“The new hotel is a must-visit destination for local explorers and tourists,” Brown Hotels said in an announcement.

The Lighthouse Athens features an all day café bar-restaurant on the first floor; a rooftop bar-restaurant on the 10th floor with a pool and panoramic views; and meeting rooms for business travelers.

The hotel also aspires to attract fitness and wellness afficionados in its modern fully equipped gym and indulging spa facilities.

Lighthouse Athens is housed in the building of the former La Mirage hotel, which has been fully renovated by architect Stavros Peppas of SP Architect & Partners.

Shades of blue and green colors, with black and gold details, dominate its interior that includes marble and bronze elements as well as chandeliers, velvet sofas and mirrors.

With Lighthouse Athens, Brown Hotels aims to revive Omonia square and contribute to the area’s growth.

Aiming to bring back Athens’ famed nightlife of the ’90s, the group has plans to open an underground club in the near future.

Brown Hotels, this year is planning to open three more hotels in Athens: the Brown Spices, Domino House and House Sans Rival.

In addition, the group will soon launch new resorts in Corinth, Halkida, Eretria, Corfu and Chania.

During the next three years, the group’s investment plan includes the opening of 40 hotels and resorts that are already in the process of construction and development.

Follow GTP Headlines on Google News to keep up to date with all the latest on tourism and travel in Greece. ΠΗΓΗ GTP

ΤΟΥΡΙΣΜΟΣ

United Airlines on Monday resumed its daily nonstop seasonal service between Athens International Airport (AIA) and New York/Newark.

“We are delighted to return to Athens in 2022 and resume nonstop services from Greece to the United States,” United Director Sales Bob Schumacher said.

Flight UA125 departs Athens Airport daily at 12:15 pm, arriving at Newark Liberty International Airport at 4:15 pm the same day. The return flight, UA124, departs Newark daily at 5:15 pm, arriving in Athens at 10:10 am the following day (all times local).

United’s service from Athens to New York/Newark is currently operated with Boeing 767-400 aircraft and as of May 7, the route will be operated with Boeing 787-10 Dreamliner aircraft.

The service is planned to operate until October 29 and will be joined next month by United’s daily nonstop seasonal service from Athens to Washington D.C., set to start on May 7.

Seasonal service between Athens and Washington D.C.

“With the return of service to New York and next month to Washington D.C., our customers in Greece can take advantage of direct connections to the U.S., as well as an unrivalled route network from United’s hubs at New York/Newark and Washington Dulles, which offer convenient nonstop connections to over 95 destinations across the Americas,” Schumacher said.

Flight UA983 will depart Athens daily at 11:50 am, arriving at Washington Dulles at 3:15 pm the same day. The return flight, UA982, will depart Washington daily at 5:10 pm, arriving in Athens at 9:55 am the following day (all times local).

United’s service from Athens to Washington Dulles will be operated with Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner aircraft.

“We are truly excited to be…Re-UNITED again, welcoming United Airlines back to Athens, with daily nonstop seasonal services to metropolitan New York as of today, and the nation’s Capital, Washington, as of next month,” AIA Director Communications & Marketing Ioanna Papadopoulou said.

United has been serving Greece with summer seasonal flights since 2016.

“Even during the highly adverse two-year period of the pandemic, the US market demonstrated great resilience and always ranks among our most important and popular markets, with a large Greek-American community playing a key role in this,” Papadopoulou added.

Follow GTP Headlines on Google News to keep up to date with all the latest on tourism and travel in Greece. ΠΗΓΗ GTP

ΤΟΥΡΙΣΜΟΣ

Greek Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias. Photo source: Greek Tourism Ministry

Greece is ready to welcome visitors as the tourism season kicks off earlier thanks to ongoing efforts by the ministry and industry stakeholders, said Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias during the naming ceremony of a TUI fly aircraft on Crete on Monday.

Speaking during the event held at the Nikos Kazantzakis Airport, Kikilias reiterated the ministry’s goals for the year ahead which include extending the tourism season, expanding destinations, and moving ahead with the implementation of a sustainable tourism model.

Global tour operator TUI named one of its Boeing 737-8 aircraft “Heraklion”, after the capital of Crete, where the group does business.

Oliver Lackmann, Chief Flight Operations Officer TUI Airline, with godmother Irini Vasiliou, and the TUI fly crew of the new Boeing 737-8 on Crete. Photo source: TUI (© Gregorschläger)

Oliver Lackmann, Chief Flight Operations Officer TUI Airline, with godmother Irini Vasiliou, and the TUI fly crew of the new Boeing 737-8 on Crete. Photo source: TUI (© Gregorschläger)

“There is a positive trend in demand at the moment and that is why we’ve brought the first arrivals four weeks earlier,” said Managing Director TUI Fly Oliver Lackmann. He added that TUI Group is planning on bringing about 3 million visitors to Greece and that it had added 62 new flights for April to Crete, Rhodes and Kos.

In total TUI this year expects to operate some 40,000 flights to 19 Greek airports with 9,000 from European destinations from and to Crete alone.

The traditional water arch welcomed the new Boeing 737-8 of TUI fly at Heraklion airport. Photo source: TUI (© Gregorschläger)

The traditional water arch welcomed the new Boeing 737-8 of TUI fly at Heraklion airport. Photo source: TUI (© Gregorschläger)

Kikilas called on tourism stakeholders – hoteliers, travel agents, airlines and travel agencies – to make a coordinated, organized and strong effort every day, so that more visitors come to Greece.

The minister expressed his optimism about welcoming visitors earlier than ever before, adding that the goal in 2022 will be to attract “more travelers, more higher-income visitors, who respect customs and culture, love Greece and will come again and again, thus supporting the hundreds of thousands of people active in tourism”. 

On Sunday, also in Heraklion, Crete, Kikilias and TUI Cruises CEO Wybcke Meier marked the start of the homeporting season on TUI Cruises’ “Mein Schiff 5”. With 1,650 guests on board, the cruise ship departed the port of Heraklion for a cruise to the Greek islands.

Follow GTP Headlines on Google News to keep up to date with all the latest on tourism and travel in Greece. ΠΗΓΗ GTP

ΤΟΥΡΙΣΜΟΣ

The new luxury “Superstar” vessel of Greek ferry operator Seajets on April 8 will begin itineraries from the port of Rafina to the Aegean islands.

Formerly known as “SuperFerry II”, the vessel will conduct daily evening itineraries from Rafina (departure at 4.45pm) to the islands of Andros, Tinos, Mykonos and Paros.

The passenger ship can travel at a speed of up to 21 knots and carry 1,480 passengers and 240 vehicles.

“Superstar is the ideal solution for short getaways but also long stays on the islands,” Seajets said in an announcement.

The company offers a 20 percent discount for passengers, private cars and motorcycles on return tickets that will be issued until April 12 for trips with Seajet Superstar until the end of the season.

Passengers must be members of Seajets Seaclub and issue both their departure and return tickets with their membership card.

Follow GTP Headlines on Google News to keep up to date with all the latest on tourism and travel in Greece. ΠΗΓΗ GTP

ΤΟΥΡΙΣΜΟΣ

Vigla Hotel, Amorgos

The Vigla Hotel on the Greek island of Amorgos has announced that it will reopen its doors and welcome guests on April 10.

Located in the village of Tholaria on the north part of the island, Vigla Hotel offers high quality services and authentic hospitality in its recently renovated rooms, as well as stunning views of the Aegiali bay.

“We know that now, more than ever, travelers are looking for carefree safe holidays. We are here to make it happen,” Vigla Hotel Managing Director Despina Giannakopoulou said.

The village of Tholaria and the bay of Aegiali on Amorgos.

The hotel has maintained all its safety-conscious measures to ensure maximum safety for its guests and employees against the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

For example, the hotel offers disinfectant dispensers for guests in all rooms and public areas as well as contactless procedures such as online check in and digitalized menus supported by QR code or special links.

Photo source: Vigla Hotel

Meanwhile, Vigla Hotel provides its guests with the opportunity to experience new activities via the Dream Blue, its specialized travel agency promoting the beauties of Amorgos.

“Aiming to make nature-based physical activity accessible to all, we propose hiking routes and road trips to the amazing nature of Amorgos with our expert guides. In addition, we offer a number of indoor activities such as cooking and dance lessons,” Giannakopoulou said. More information is available on the website of Dream Blue here.

To celebrate its opening, Vigla Hotel has launched a special campaign with an exclusive offer of 15 percent discount for long stays.

In addition, the hotel continues last year’s #be_a_traveller_again offer with a 10 percent discount.

Follow GTP Headlines on Google News to keep up to date with all the latest on tourism and travel in Greece. ΠΗΓΗ GTP

ΤΟΥΡΙΣΜΟΣ

Volotea, the Spanish airline that connects medium-sized cities and European capitals, recently announced today the launch of a new connection between Athens and Palermo, the capital of Sicily, from June 10.

The new route will operate twice weekly (every Tuesday and Friday) and provides an offer of over 11,500 tickets.

With the announcement of the Athens-Palermo route, the total number of seats on sale for summer 2022 to the Greek capital rises to more than 560,000 seats (vs 182,000 seats offered in 2021) from Athens International Airport (AIA) and the number of destinations served by the airline reaches 15.

In total Volotea will operate more than 3,600 flights vs the 1,162 operated last year.

“Announcing the new Athens-Palermo connection fills us with pride and satisfaction. Only a few weeks ago, in fact, we launched in Athens a new route to Italy, to Turin, and since the beginning of the year, other two new routes to France (Bourdeaux and Nantes) and Spain (Bilbao) as proof of our commitment to support the recovery of the tourism sector, both incoming and outgoing – said Valeria Rebasti, Country Manager Italy & Southeastern Europe of Volotea.

This summer Volotea will offer flights from Athens to Bilbao (new route 2022), Bordeaux (new route 2022), Lyon, Marseille, Nantes (new route 2022), Strasbourg, Bari, Turin (new route 2022), Venice, Verona, Crete, Mykonos, Santorini, Dubrovnik and now Palermo.

Since the start of its activities in 2015, the year of its debut in Athens, Volotea has transported more than 1 million passengers with a total of over 11,000 flights.

Follow GTP Headlines on Google News to keep up to date with all the latest on tourism and travel in Greece. ΠΗΓΗ GTP