LESS than month out from the spectical that will be the London Olympics and several weeks on from the pageantry of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee – the United Kingdom particularly its capital London are basking in the global spotlight.
So, it should come as no surprise London was this month named as the world’s top visitor destination by credit card company MasterCard.
It is a title the city also won last year in the MasterCard Global Destination Cities Index, which measures the number of international visitors alongside their anticipated spend.
Some 16.9 million people are expected to fly to the Olympic city and their expected spending will bring a windfall of $21 billion.
Second placed city Paris lagged behind by 1 million while New York only managed 13th on the list with an expected 7.6 million arrivals.
So what puts London ahead of the rest?
Here’s Booked.net‘s top five best of London.
THE sport and, of course, the party that was Euro 2012 is over.
Euro 2012 kicked off in Warsaw, Poland and came to an end three weeks later in Kiev, Ukraine on Sunday. The final match for the European Football Championship title saw Spain rightfully claim the title of best team in Europe (and the world) in a 4-0 drubbing of Italy at Olympiyskiy Stadium.
Now, comes the dissection of the tournament.
It was the largest event to be hosted in Eastern Europe since the 1980 Moscow Olympics. Much has changed since then, the “Iron Curtain” fell, the map of Europe has been redrawn several times, what hasn’t changed is traditional East/West bias.
Months of warnings, perpetuated by the British and European media, proved groundless and largely overblown with the tournament hailed as a success.
The criticism of Ukraine was particularly harsh. Mass media alleged Ukraine’s hosting of the Euro 2012 would be marred by racist violence and organizational chaos.
Instead, Ukraine is enjoying the success of an event that has, for now at least, transformed its image.
Booked.net has followed the championship since it was in its’ preparation stages, here’s our thoughts.
ONE of the most recognized names in the hotel industry globally has signed a distribution agreement with one of the world’s fastest growing online reservation websites.
The agreement, inked last month, means Hilton Worldwide’s portfolio of 10 brands, 3,800 hotels and 630,000 rooms in 91 countries will be available for reservation directly on Booked.net and its’ network of affiliate websites.
Booked.net director Andrei Grudiy said the agreement created a direct link between Booked.net’s customer base and Hilton’s properties.
“This agreement marks our commitment to bring our customers the best range of hotels and having such a prestigious and recognizable brand on our database is exciting for us and our customers,” he said. “It means we can deliver high-speed and reliable bookings as every booking made on our web site quickly accesses the hotel reservation system.”
Hilton’s loyalty program was also for every booking made via Booked.net, he said.
WANT to keep track of the time and the weather as you travel? Want to monitor what is happening at home while you are abroad? Or simply want to know the time and what the weather is doing where you are?
Hotel reservation website www.booked.net can make it happen.
As the headline says: “We’re not just about hotel reservations”.
As well well as offering your the best deals on more than 90,000 hotels in 17,000 destinations, Booked.net is committed to providing you with the best travel information and news as it comes to hand. We are also equally committed to providing you with practical applications that are useful long after you have returned home.
With this in mind, the team at Booked.net has developed weather and clock widgets for websites and blogs with capabilties that extend beyond the ordinary.
NOW you have the chance to stay in the comfort of a Hilton hotel and save up to 40 percent with a partnership offer available at Booked.net.
Hilton hotels are a great choice for those planning holidays this summer offering the standards of comfort and service synonymous with the Hilton brand.
To take advantage of this offer simply Book a room from May 17 to August 31 and save up to 40 percent off your reservation at your pick of any Hilton hotel across Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
In South Africa, Hilton properties offer an escape from hot coastal beaches and adventurous safaris, while appealing natural beauty and ancient architecture surround them in the Middle East and glossy European capitals like Amsterdam, Berlin, London and so on.
Hilton experiences constant change, but its’ warm hospitality is permanent.
Considering the high demands on accommodation in the tourist season of 2012, the Booked.net/Hilton initiative means both brands are offering you the opportunity to experience traditional hospitality with 21st century comforts.
Whether you are about pampering yourself in the spa in the Hilton Durban Hotel, South Africa or relaxing in a swimming pool in the Hilton Munich Park, Germany, Booked.net offers listings of all participating Hilton properties.
WHAT about starting your stay at a hotel in one city, having a romantic dinner at sea and then float to another place all without leaving your hotel?
Svetlana Malukha writes about boat-hotels, a style of accommodation to harks back to a time when travel was not just about the destination, but how you got there as well.
Boat-hotels, or botels, are floating hotels, which allow you to stay and travel on a real boat.
Botels are a rare and typical to particular cities, which lie next to a river, lake or sea.
So,why are they are becoming more and more popular each year and what are the main advantages staying in this kind of accommodation?
THEY aren’t just about catwalks and clothes.
Increasingly big-name fashion designers are lending their name to anything including hotels.
Modern fashion houses are increasingly turning their skills to hotel interiors and rooms.
What’s more, some of them open their own hotels throughout the world or collaborate with big hotel chains, bringing that additional touch of class to the properties.
Elena Kozmenko looks at the design hotels available on Booked.net’s hotel reservation database.
IT is a story filled with intrigue – a piece of Manhattan real estate known as The Carlyle – a hotel that would become a meeting a point for a pair of illicit lovers.
While hotels have always been prime locations for romantic trysts, in this case there was a lot at stake.
One half of the pair was American President John F. Kennedy, the other half was movie star Marilyn Monroe.
Booked.net writer Olga Leleka looks at the hotel where it all began.
In February 1962 The Carlyle on Manhattan gathered the best of Hollywood’s stars alongside the most-powerful in American politics for a dinner with President John F. Kennedy.
Among all the guests, only one dared to keep Kennedy waiting.
HAVE you heard the old Latin proverb “quod licet jovi, nоn licet bovi”, which literally means “Gods may do what cattle may not”?
It doesn’t matter if you haven’t; I’m using it, because it perfectly applies to the characters of this story – celebrities.
Indeed, some celebrities do things that no other regular person could ever get away with.
Drug use and abuse, drink-driving, event disruption and…trashing hotel rooms.
Booked.net staffer Dmytro Dmytriiev looks at a curious preoccupation of the famous.
Since the 1960’s dozens of exquisite hotel rooms have been thrashed by “fame monsters” throughout the world.
Here are Booked.net’s top five most memorable trashed rooms: