"Tweet-a-carol" and Mrs. Claus at Toronto Pearson ... Fairmont winter deals
Here's a pretty cool Yule concept: tweet-a-carol.
Starting today and continuing through Christmas Eve (through certain hours), the folks at Pearson International Airport have a program where you can use Twitter to get Christmas carollers out to sing to the guest of your choice.
Does your grandpa love "White Christmas?" Send a tweet to @torontopearson with his first name, flight number and the date he's travelling and Pearson will send the singers over to Gate 123 and serenade him a la Bing Crosby.
Pretty great idea, I think, from an airport I've often criticized for poor shopping (still the case) and terrible luggage service (ditto).
In addition to the Christmas Carol/Twitter program, Pearson also has Mrs. Santa Claus out reading holiday stories to kids as they wait for their flights. Also a very nice idea.
"We are focusing on delighting our guests as they travel through the airport," said Lloyd McCoomb, president and CEO of the Greater Toronto Airports Authority. "We want everyone coming through the doors of our airport to have the best experience possible."
Kudos for the concept, folks. Let's hope you can continue to innovate like this with new programs to improve the Pearson experience the rest of the year.
(I looked for a photo but couldn't find one. The above photo, in the interest of full disclosure, was taken in Sydney, Australia).
FAIRMONT HOTELS ON SALE
Fairmont has launched its "Everyone's an Original" winter offer. Between now and Dec. 19 at noon Eastern Time, Fairmont is offering up to 30 per cent off its rooms around the world, or free breakfast for two or a free night. There's also a chance to earn double airline miles with the program, which is valid for stats up to April 30, 2012.
Fairmont has hotels across Canada, of course, including Whistler and Montreal and here in Toronto. The offer also is valid in their luxurious properties in Hawaii and across the U.S., including San Francisco and New York. The Plaza in New York, one of the top properties in the city, shows rooms starting at $595 U.S. But rooms in lovely Newport Beach, California (see photo) were listed on Thursday morning for as little as $104 - an absolute steal. Chicago's Fairmont Millenium Park was listed as low as $135; also an incredible bargain for a great city.
Other sample rates, according o the website (www.fairmont.com/winter): Fairmont Vancouver, $189 Cdn., Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth Montreal $159 Cdn., The Fairmont Southampton in Bermuda from $259 U.S., the Fairmont Mount Kenya Safari Club from $359 U.S. and the Fairmont Monte Carlo from $302 Cdn.
CRYSTAL CRUISES TO THE RESCUE
Crazy story the other day out on the Atlantic Ocean. It seems there's a big rowing race taking place called the 2011 Atlantic Challenge Race, with some 17 boats racing across the Atlantic.
One pair, a gentleman from the UK and his partner, from the Netherlands, ran into trouble when a large wave sunk their boat some 800 kilometers west of the Canary Islands. They spent 10 hours in a tiny life raft but were able to get out a rescue call.
The Crystal Cruises' Crystal Serenity ship was about 120 nautical miles north of the rowers, but heard about their problem and steamed their way south for the resuce. They were picked up about 6 a.m. on Dec. 14.
Weather was bad, but the crew on the Crystal ship managed to spot a flare and the captain was able to manouevre his giant ship close to the raft so the two rowers could be brought aboard.
They were checked out in the medical centre, and the ship resumed its journey to St. Maarten, where its due to dock on Sunday.
A Crystal spokesperson said the two men are continuing their Atlantic journey, albeit in "the most luxurious environment."
Talk about your upgrades.
A CROSS-ATLANTIC UPGRADE OF A LIFETIME