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Travel News

NEWS Sicily

By Judy Newell


Mexico Travel News

New Expedition Cruise Line

Offshore Outpost Expeditions (OOE), launching this November, is being billed as a “new type of expedition cruise.” The Pacific Provider will embark on its inaugural cruise November 26 from San Jose del Cabo. The itinerary will travel Mexico’s Sea of Cortez, aiming to offer guests a personalized, flexible travel experience.

For the 2017–2018 cruise seasons, the 160-foot Pacific Provider will sail expeditions in the Sea of Cortez through April 1, 2018. The ship’s small size and maneuverability will allow it to visit areas not accessible by larger cruise ships.

Onboard, guests will be able to enjoy spacious cabins, dining areas and lounges, four tenders and an expansive deck space for viewing, dining, and lounging. With a maximum capacity of 12 guests per cruise, travelers can also expect a guest to crew ratio of 2:1.

Inaugural season rates are $5,925 per person for a 7-day cruise from Sunday until Saturday (regular rate $7,900).


International News

Libertine Tourism

A Forbes magazine report that focused on the niche market described as “travel that celebrates pleasures of the body” estimates that it is a $20 billion industry worldwide. And Mexico has its share.

Libertine travel is not the same as sex tourism, which includes prostitution, pedophilia, human trafficking, or other illegal sexual activities. Nor is it the same as nudist travel.

Libertine tourism refers to travel in “the lifestyle,” a term that denotes people or couples who engage in adventurous sexual practices such as recreational sex with other consenting adults. In the tourism industry, it means sex-positive travel, usually to resorts or on cruises where sex isn’t just on the menu; it’s what everybody is ordering.

Lifestyle travel places a heavy emphasis on sex, featuring resorts and cruises that offer everything from topless-optional pools to full-fledged “playrooms” designed with group sex in mind.

Karisma’s Hidden Beach Resort on the Riviera Maya is designed specifically for nudists but reminds guests that public displays of affection are not part of the agenda. Temptations Cancun Resort, one of the original topless resorts in Cancun, reopened in August after a year-long property overhaul with 430 rooms and suites; rates begin at $342 a night.

Desire Resort, a couple’s only oasis, has two properties in Mexico. Their promotion states: “Desire …has created the resort to allow your wildest fantasies to come true.” The Desire Riviera Maya Pearl is $642 per night, and Desire Riviera Maya is $568 per night. These are not cheap stays.

Lifestyle cruises are another part of the market, with charters being offered four to five times a year aboard vessels owned by Royal Caribbean, Celebrity Cruises, and Azamara Club Cruises. The average price of a 7-day cruise is upwards of $4,000 per person.


Cruise News

NCL Drinks Package More Than $100 Day

Norwegian Cruise Line raised the price of its Ultimate Beverage package 13 percent to $89 per person daily, an industry high, which after 17 percent in service fees makes it the first daily fee to exceed $100. The Ultimate Beverage package includes all alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks that individually cost $15 or less. The Cork and Caps package (beer, wine, and non-alcoholic drinks) remains at $59 per person per day plus 17 percent.

Air News

Longest Nonstop Flight

United Airlines has debuted the longest nonstop flight to or from the United States, a route between Los Angeles and Singapore. The 8,700-mile flight is served by a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, taking up to 17 hours and 55 minutes.


Finnair Expands to Mexico

Finnair is continuing its expansion into the winter season with new routes opening to India, Mexico, Cuba, and the Dominican Republic. Routes are opening to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, on Nov 5. Overall, Finnair will have flights to 20 intercontinental destinations and more than 100 destinations in Europe this winter.


Interjet Launches Flights from LA to Mexico

Interjet announced non-stop service between Los Angeles and Los Cabos, Puerto Vallarta, and El Bajío, Mexico. The company already serves Los Angeles with non-stop flights to Cancun, Mexico City, and Guadalajara. This new service is scheduled to begin Nov 23.

Flights will run three times a week from Los Angeles to Los Cabos, four flights a week to Puerto Vallarta and daily service to El Bajio (BJX-Leon).

Interjet has launched a special sale for the new flights from Los Angeles with round-trip fares starting at $199 to Los Cabos and $259 to Puerto Vallarta and El Bajío. This sale ends Jan 17, 2018, and prices include all applicable taxes.

In addition to introductory offer, Interjet offers free in-flight snacks and drinks, no fees for checked baggage on specific fares and female-only lavatories.


Words of the Wise and Well-traveled

“Life is beautiful if you are on the road to somewhere.” – Orhan Pamuk

Deal of the Week

Embracing Sicily

Create memories of a lifetime. Smaller crowds, cooler temperatures, excellent seasonal foods, lower airfares. These are just some of the advantages of traveling during fall in Italy.

Experience Sicily and its culture. Travel from coast to coast and then into the central mountains of Sicily to learn firsthand about its history and culture. From Greek ruins to the birthplace of the mafia, you’ll experience the many faces of this island. Tour Highlights: Palermo, Corleone, Marsala, Valley of the Temples, Siracusa, Taormina, Mount Etna.

8-day/7-night escorted tour with guaranteed departures March through October, 2018, from $1,860 per person.

Included with the tour: 7-night first-class hotel accommodation with daily breakfast; Transport by air-conditioned motor coach or minivan; professional English-speaking tour director; 5 [1] dinners, 2 lunches; 1 wine tasting, 1 cooking lesson, 1 lecture; sightseeing as indicated, including local guides; roundtrip airport transfers.

Judy Newell, an international travel consultant for over 40 years, heads Perfect Journeys and specializes in unique travel experiences to destinations around the world. She designs journeys that are tailored to suit your interests, abilities, and budget. Please contact Judy for reservations or further information on Travel News topics; cell phone 415 111 8765; Vonage 949-300-3682; email Her office is in Rancho Los Labradores, Car. a Dolores Hidalgo. View the latest travel specials on the website


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