News: Atmosphere to open new Oblu Maldives property in 2018

News: Atmosphere to open new Oblu Maldives property in 2018

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Atmosphere Hotels & Resorts is to continue its on-going expansion with the opening of another addition to its Maldives resort portfolio: Oblu Select at Sangeli.

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July 10, 2017 at 10:16AM

News: Spehr to lead Atlantis by Giardino in Switzerland

News: Spehr to lead Atlantis by Giardino in Switzerland

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Atlantis by Giardino has promoted 44-year-old Kai Spehr from deputy manager to general manager, replacing Martin Vossen who has moved on to be chief executive of a group of hotels in the Maldives.

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July 10, 2017 at 10:06AM

News: Tiny Rebel unveils new brewery and bar

News: Tiny Rebel unveils new brewery and bar

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Tiny Rebel brewery has opened its new brewery and bar site in Newport, Wales, and beer fans from around the world are invited to immerse themselves in the experience.

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July 10, 2017 at 10:06AM

Kenya’s Most Famous Critic of Politicians Runs for Political Office

Kenya’s Most Famous Critic of Politicians Runs for Political Office

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Tristan McConnell visits Boniface Mwangi, Kenya’s most famous activist, as he seeks a government position.

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July 10, 2017 at 10:04AM

News: Historic locomotive steams back to Snowdon summit after 17 years

News: Historic locomotive steams back to Snowdon summit after 17 years

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Cherished steam engine Loco #5 has returned to service with Snowdon Mountain Railway, carrying passengers to the mountain’s summit for the first time in 17 years. Loco #5 is now the railway’s premier locomotive, following a comprehensive £60,000 refit and refurbishment of the engine.

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July 10, 2017 at 09:55AM

News: Mövenpick Resort & Spa Tala Bay Aqaba enhances spa offering

News: Mövenpick Resort & Spa Tala Bay Aqaba enhances spa offering

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Mövenpick Resort & Spa Tala Bay Aqaba has further enhanced its wellbeing experience for guests, with the addition of a boot camp, jogging track and yoga area. They complement the resort’s health complex, which also features the award-winning Zara Spa Tala Bay and an extensive fitness centre.

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July 10, 2017 at 09:44AM

A Scene in London

A Scene in London

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Advice: Ignore People on Social Media!

Hehe… I do this quite a bit. I mean, I read all the comments, but I certainly ignore the negative ones. Even more importantly, I don’t mind if a photo doesn’t get much reaction at all. Like today’s photo for example. I really like it… I find it very interesting and kind of clever! I mean, you guys know I don’t take myself seriously and I’m not over-patting myself on the back. But when I posted it, it got basically no reaction. Hey, that’s cool… what’s important is that I like it. So, take that to heart when posting your own work. Don’t try to post photos of things because you think other people will like them – do and share work that pleases you!

City of London???

As I was working on this photo, it suddenly struck me, “Hey London! Why the hell did you pay for this incredibly shitty photo? I mean look at it… this woman looks depressed. It looks like she could be mugged at any second. There’s trash and ugly grass all over the place. Power lines. I mean, what the heck is the point of this picture and how much was it commissioned for? Oh well, who am I to judge.

Daily Photo – A Scene in London

One day we took a few Mini Coopers on a really fun tour around London. I got to see a lot of places I had never been before. A lot of cities have these tours, and I recommend them very much. The drivers tell you all kinds of interesting little facts as you whip around the cities. This tour was called “Big City Little Car” and was a blast. While driving along, I saw this out the window.

A Scene in London

Photo Information


  • Date Taken2017-05-13 17:58:55
  • CameraILCE-7RM2
  • Camera MakeSony
  • Exposure Time1/1000
  • Aperture4
  • ISO800
  • Focal Length32.0 mm
  • FlashOff, Did not fire
  • Exposure ProgramManual
  • Exposure Bias-0.7

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July 10, 2017 at 09:42AM

Tech Investors Are Still in Love With London Despite Brexit

Tech Investors Are Still in Love With London Despite Brexit

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Garry Knight  / Flickr

London has secured more venture capital funding than any other European city since the Brexit vote. Garry Knight / Flickr

Skift Take: So far it seems that London’s tech scene hasn’t suffered any negative impact from last June’s Brexit vote. The bigger test will come when the results of the negotiations are known. Only then will entrepreneurs and investors find out where they stand.

— Patrick Whyte

Ever since the UK voted to leave the European Union, there has been an expectation that London’s position as the leading tech hub in Europe would come under threat.

The country might be 18 months from the formal exit date, but at the moment, investors are showing no sign of losing their appetite for spending money in the capital.

Data pulled by London & Partners, the Mayor of London’s promotional agency, from Pitchbook shows that more than $1.5 billion (£1.1 billion) of venture capital funding has been ploughed in to London’s tech sector over the last six months. The figure is the highest ever recorded and is almost double the amount recorded in the same period last year.

Surprisingly, given the number of negative headlines, London is also outperforming its peers across Europe. Since the Brexit vote last June, London has secured $2.4 billion (£1.8 billion) in VC funding across 544 deals.

Paris, though, outshone London when private equity deals were included — potentially a worrying sign of things to come for the UK capital.

Table showing venture capital, private equity and M&A investment into London tech companies versus other major European cities since Brexit (23rd June 2016)

London Berlin Amsterdam Dublin Madrid Paris Stockholm
Venture Capital $2,383m $999m $217m $128m $53m $718m $354m
Private Equity $6,157m $3,418 $1,372m $229m $0m $19,892m $266m
M&A $8,413m $3,428m $1,598m $2,642m $104m $3,304m $183m
Pitchbook analysis conducted on behalf of London & Partners. Sourced May 31 2017

Travel-related firms in this figure include direct booking platform Triptease, which closed a $9 million Series B round in April.

London is also home to plenty of financial technology startups, some of which are proving popular with travelers. The likes of Monzo and Revolut, which have both raised millions over the past year, offer pre-paid currency cards with near-perfect exchange rates.

Coach company Zeelo, has also recently secured $450,000 in pre-seed funding but this fell outside the above figure.

Laura Citron, Chief Executive of London & Partners, said: “London remains Europe’s leading hub for global investors. The Brexit vote has understandably created some uncertainty, but it is no surprise to see that London continues to attract more than double the amount of investment than any other European city.”

Upping their game

While London is currently in a healthy position, Brexit has the potential to derail any progress. The UK looks set to leave the single market, which allows businesses to seamlessly access a market with 500 million people. New agreements will also need to be made governing industries such as aviation. The terms of the UK’s deal are still yet to be decided and Prime Minister Theresa May’s poor election performance has put her in a weaker spot.

The rhetoric around Brexit appears to have softened of late, and this could result in a longer period of transition than had previously been expected.

Rival cities, though, are keen to talk up their credentials as tech hubs. Station F, a huge start-up campus based in Paris’s 13th arrondissement, opened at the end of June, and Factory Berlin generates buzz with its strategy of connecting startups and established companies in the German capital.

While London remains Europe’s biggest start-up center, the question is: How long will that last?

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July 10, 2017 at 05:35AM

The Truth Behind Donald Trump, Jr.,’s Meeting with a Russian Lawyer

The Truth Behind Donald Trump, Jr.,’s Meeting with a Russian Lawyer

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David Remnick on new evidence that the Trump campaign may have colluded with Russia in the 2016 Presidential election.

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July 10, 2017 at 01:54AM

A Look at the New First- and Business-Class Seats Coming to Airbus Cabins

A Look at the New First- and Business-Class Seats Coming to Airbus Cabins

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Airbus aircraft are in use all around the world — whether the airline is flying its flagship A380 or the traditional A330 — and some cabins are being updated to feature the very best first- and business-class seats on the market today. I recently caught up with Stelia Aerospace — the manufacturers of Asiana Airlines’ A350 business-class seats — to see what’s new and coming soon to an Airbus aircraft near you.

The Ultimate 17 First-Class Suite

First up is the Ultimate 17 by Stelia Aerospace, a fully-enclosed first class suite with double doors and a curved HDTV flat screen.

IMG_8436

The suite comes with a single bed that’s 32 inches wide and has a fully-flat length of 79 inches.

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The ottoman has multiple uses, acting as a footrest in the reclined position and making up part of the fully flat bed. It’s also a generous storage compartment and works as a “buddy seat” if another passenger wishes to dine with you, as long as the table is pulled out and placed in between.

While it can be heavily customized by the airline, the showcased option I saw was a good example of the amount of luxury achievable in a “ready to buy” first-class suite seat. Additional innovative features include the ability for passengers to control the recline, position and firmness via an iPhone app.

The Solstys Business-Class Seat

Stelia Aerospace also showcased its Solstys seat, which is already in service on several airlines, including Thai Airways, Asiana, Etihad and Air Berlin. These seats have a pitch of 77 inches when in the full lie-flat position and can be customized with different headrests and upholsteries depending on the airline.

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Also great to see was the new technology that’s been integrated into the seat. In addition to USB power points and headphone jacks, the illuminated black panel to the left of the seat offers compatibility for contactless credit card payments, definitely a trend we are moving toward. Furthermore, the circled battery logo on the right side of the table indicates a wireless charging point.

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In terms of comfort, airlines can define the cushioning effect of the seat using technology called Octaspring. Multiple springs are placed within the seat during the definition and customization phase, and depending on the airline, the “firmness” of the spring will be adjusted, determining the overall comfort of the seat for passengers.

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Overall Impression

Stelia Aerospace is continuing to provide innovative updates either new and existing seats that have become a passenger favorite. With contactless payments, wireless phone charging and Octaspring technology, there’s a lot for first- and business-class flyers to be excited about.

All photos by the author.

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July 9, 2017 at 10:16PM