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Eye on the World: Minneapolis

Last week, I attended MLT Vacations’ MLT University 2014 in Minneapolis, MN. For three days I sat in on travel agent courses centered on new products, destinations and hotels around the globe, and classes about marketing and social media initiatives—all designed to help travel agents increase their bottom line.

Selling “Authentic Experiences” in the Islands

AMResorts’ new Dream Sands Cancun Resort & Spa. In the keynote address at the Caribbean Tourism Organization’s (CTO) State of the Industry Conference in Saint Thomas, Apple Leisure Group CEO, Alex Zozaya, said his vision of Caribbean travel is about selling authentic experiences in the islands.

MLT University 2014—Empowering Travel Agents

MLT President, John Caldwell, at MLT University 2014 in Minneapolis. Although diplomas weren’t handed out to the hundreds of travel agents who attended MLT Vacations’ MLT University 2014, they did walk away with a plethora of training information, from learning how to sell to the LGBT market to tapping into the growing trend of niche travel—and with the theme, Better Together, Empowering U, it didn’t come as a surprise that this year’s conference was on-point with new products and added educational courses (and let’s not forget the trade show with more than 250 participating destinations, and hotel and resort partners).

AMResorts’ New Happenings

King Suite accommodations at the new Dreams Sands Cancun Resort & Spa. AMResorts’ new happenings include a new property in Mexico (where you can find most of the hotel company’s resorts), a new wedding package for South Asian couples, and an easier way to help you keep track of your bookings and stay current with the brand.

Tribal Hotel Opens in Nicaragua

Pool area and interior patio at the Tribal Hotel. Earlier this year, Tribal Hotel opened in Nicaragua.

CTO’s State of the Industry Conference: USVI Update

Chef Digby Stridiron prepping a meal for media—his new restaurant opens next year. Talk about focused marketing: The United States and other Caribbean islands account for 93 percent of visitors to the U.S.

Family Fun Afloat

Travelers take a photo op on International Expeditions’ (IE) Amazon River tour. For families looking to share the most special of experiences in Latin America, Amazon and Galapagos Islands cruising sit atop family travel wish lists.

Fifth Night Free

Aerial view of the Grand Case Beach Club. The Grand Case Beach Club in St. Martin is now offering a fifth night free stay through Oct.

MLT Bookings to Mexico City Grow

Zocalo Square in Mexico City. MLT Vacations announced that bookings to Mexico City are growing, as the city is gaining popularity with millennials and baby boomers.

Agent Perks in St. Croix

Hotel Caravelle’s boardwalk. (Photo Courtesy of The St. Croix Hotel Association has launched a travel agent perk promo: at Hotel Caravelle, agents get access to rate discounts now through Dec.

Guatemala Travel Mart

Visit Tikal National Park during Guatemala Travel Mart. Agents looking to learn more about what Guatemala has to offer can sign up for the third annual Guatemala Travel Mart event in Guatemala City, taking place Oct.

Halloween Treats

A Voodoo House in New Orleans. (Photo credit: Pat Garin.) We have a few Halloween treats across the country for those of you whose clients are thinking of spicing up their Halloween celebrations this year.

Agents Earn Even More Cash with Guadeloupe Islands Bookings

Agents earn $50 with reported bookings to the Guadeloupe Islands. Did you become a Guadeloupe Islands Specialist at

New Product Offerings from Collette

Spotlight on Florence with Collette. Collette, a Rhode Island-based international tour operator, announced a new product line called Spotlights with departures beginning in May of 2015.

Catch Every Big Play in Las Vegas

Cash In On Vegas during football season. Football season is upon us, and that means it’s time for you to call the perfect play for your clients—a trip to Las Vegas to catch all of the gridiron action!’s International Conference & Trade Show

Kristin Chenoweth, Quantum of the Seas’ godmother, and John Lovell,’s president.’s International Conference & Trade Show, taking place April 24-May 2, 2015 aboard Royal Caribbean International’s Quantum of the Seas, is now open for registration.

AMResorts Launches AMRewards

Zoëtry Paraiso de la Boniat overlooking the Caribbean Sea. AMResorts launches AMRewards, a new travel agent loyalty program, offering easier delivery of booking bonuses and client request communications, as well as sales and marketing support tools.

Malliouhana Re-Opens in Anguilla

Guestroom at Malliouhana, which opens this November. The all-new Malliouhana, An Auberge Resort debuts on Nov.

Universal Partners with Loews for New Hotel

Rendering of Loews Sapphire Falls Resort. (Photo courtesy of Universal Orlando Resort.) This week Universal Orlando Resort announced it has partnered with Loews Hotels and Resorts to open the Caribbean-themed Loews Sapphire Falls Resort in summer 2016.

Rhode Island Breaks the Mold

Rose Island House in Newport. (Photo credit: Discover Newport.)   Rhode Island—the smallest state in the U.S.—seems to constantly break the mold: it was one of the first original colonies; one of thirteen colonies to declare independence from British rule; and now one of the first states to perform same-sex marriages.