Hero Image: Remains of the ancient Roman aqueduct in Israel
Hyatt hotels and spas proudly showcase their wellbeing offerings, designed to positively impact how colleagues, customers, and community members feel, fuel and function
Hyatt Hotels Corporation (NYSE: H) today celebrates Hyatt’s landmarks of wellbeing – Feel, Fuel and Function – by educating and encouraging colleagues and guests to participate in Global Wellness Day 2019, an entirely not-for-profit day dedicated raising awareness around what it means to live well in mind and body. More than 400 properties, including Hyatt’s Miraval and Exhale brands and the Hyatt’s regional and corporate offices, are expected to host health and wellness-related events reflecting their specific destination and local communities.
“At Hyatt, wellbeing is at the core of our DNA,” said Mark Vondrasek, chief commercial services officer at Hyatt. “We know that wellbeing is increasingly important to our colleagues, guests, and customers, and Global Wellness Day provides an opportunity to jointly celebrate our focus on wellbeing at a global scale. Today, we’re excited to showcase distinct wellbeing experiences and bring our landmarks of wellbeing – Feel, Fuel and Function – to life for colleagues and guests at our hotels around the world.”
From Delhi to Chicago and Zurich to Hong Kong, Hyatt corporate offices and properties have chosen unique ways to recognize this day. Leading by example, Hyatt’s global headquarters will be celebrating Global Wellness Day with colleagues by offering a guided yoga and meditation class and a healthy breakfast to start the day. Additionally, knowing guests and colleagues’ alike put great value in their wellbeing, properties across the world were passionate about planning celebrations for Global Wellness Day. A few examples include the following:
Alila Ubud Bali: The hotel team will provide healthy meals for children using ingredients from the property’s organic garden and donating them to the KIM foundation, which helps children with special needs. Additionally, guests and villagers from Banjar Bayad are invited to celebrate with a Zumba class at their Sculpture Garden.
Hyatt Place and Hyatt House Yinchuan Dayuecheng: This dual-branded property in China is promoting a Family Day Photo Contest where all colleagues will be asked to enjoy a family dinner at home and share photos with colleagues. Additionally, they are hosting a Get Up and Step Up Challenge for colleagues, where colleagues will use WeChat to count their steps in the morning, promoting efforts to start each day with exercise.
Europe-Middle East-Southwest Asia Region
Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht: The property will put on a 5k run for both colleagues and guests, offering healthy snacks and refreshments at the end of the race. Colleagues will have the option to also participate in yoga sessions and a one-hour fitness and food consultation from a health professional.
Park Hyatt Istanbul: During the week leading up to Global Wellness Day, the hotel invited a popular dietitian to deliver healthy eating tips during their wellness event, where colleagues and guests enjoyed detox shots and relaxation exercises at the pool.
Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego: The property will host a wellness fair for colleagues, with events that include healthy cooking demonstrations, customized stretching exercises, a mandala coloring corner and a relaxation room offering chair massages and mini facials.
Hyatt Regency Lost Pines: The Cedar Creek, Texas property will provide an ambient quiet room featuring meditative music, yoga mats and candles for colleagues and guests, while also distributing reusable water bottles, sleep patches, sunscreen and signature smoothies in the lobby. Camp Hyatt, the resort’s activity program for kids, will also provide a beginner’s yoga class for children, along with other wellness activities.
The Beekman, a Thompson Hotel: The New York City property will host a colleague walk over the neighboring Brooklyn Bridge, while also offering guided mediation and morning yoga.
Hyatt Centric Waikiki Beach: Colleagues at the Hawaiian property will join together for a group hike on Diamond Head Volcano.
Exhale: To bring awareness to their many spa and fitness offerings, all Exhale locations will be allowing guests and members to bring a friend for free to fitness classes on Global Wellness Day.
Miraval Resorts: Both Miraval Austin and Miraval Arizona will be creating a mindful moment for guests at their central gathering place, around their custom made Earth Gong. Guests will be invited to gather at the Gong at 12pm, where a poem from Thich Nhat Han will be recited, allowing guests to tune in, slow down, and take in the vibration of the gong. They will also be invited to take turns banging the gong and sharing their intentions on how they will take steps toward living a healthier, more balanced life, the key purpose of Global Wellness Day.
Follow #globalwellnessday and #GWD2019 to see how participants are celebrating Global Wellness Day 2019. And for more information around Hyatt’s commitment to wellbeing, please visit hyatt.com/aboutus/wellbeing.
The term “Hyatt” is used in this release for convenience to refer to Hyatt Hotels Corporation and/or one or more of its affiliates.
Source: Hyatt Hotels Corporation
The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) in Washington, D.C., will re-open the David H. Koch Hall of Fossils – Deep Time after a five-year renovation on June 8th, 2019. The hall, home to the museum’s collection of dinosaur fossils and latest exhibit, Deep Time, has been restored to its former 1910, Beaux Arts Gallery design. EwingCole, an award-winning architecture, engineering, and interior design firm based in Philadelphia, designed and oversaw the execution of the project.
Hero Image: Courtesy of the Smithsonian Institution
“For the museum’s roughly eight million annual visitors, the splendor of the hall is as much a part of the experience as the specimens they contain,” said EwingCole Director of Cultural Practice, Jeffrey Hirsch.
Major renovations in the 1960s, 80s, and early 2000s, dramatically altered the appearance and unique character of Dinosaur Hall. Museum administrators sought to bring it back in a meaningful and responsible way.
“There was a desire across the Smithsonian to look at the architectural integrity of their buildings and determine how they could best strengthen them and bring them back,” said Hirsch. “One major goal for the project was to convey a respect for our architectural heritage by returning the hall’s aesthetics to their original state.”
Prior alterations concealed a skylight above the hall, obstructing natural light and altering the feel of the gallery. EwingCole’s renovation uncovered the skylight and surrounding exterior windows, restored decorative plasterwork, and upgraded the museum’s aging infrastructure with modern technologies. Each of the museum’s main halls are now open and inviting.
EwingCole’s Director of Lighting Design, Angela Matchica, noted the importance of bringing daylight back into the space adding, “unmitigated sunlight created problems for the museum and its specimens in the past, so re-exposing Dinosaur Hall’s skylights came with a set of challenges.”
EwingCole designers turned to a glazing system containing an aerogel nanotechnology that serves as both an insulator and light filter. This material mitigates both ultraviolet light and heat as it illuminates the gallery. Controlled daylight now floods the hall for the first time in nearly two decades, the 65 million-year-old specimens below remain protected, and interior temperatures are more easily regulated.
“The space is overwhelming; the size of the objects is overwhelming,” said Matchica. “You never got that sense of scale before, but now visitors will see the full gravitas of the dinosaurs. It’s breathtaking.”
Another key focus of the project aimed at restoring the hall’s ornate plasterwork which had been lost for generations. The design team sought to recreate these details using original methods. “The craft involved in recreating this work is a dying art, with a dwindling number of people who still do this type of work,” said architect Ryan Delahoussaye.
The templates for the new moldings were cast from original building fabric in Ocean’s Hall, a sister gallery located in the museum. “Luckily, we were able to bring ATS Studios in, who were able to right a wrong that had been done to the space so many years ago,” Delahoussaye said. “It’s been restored in an authentic way.”
Additional improvements include an all new FossiLab, a fully functioning interactive research space within the gallery that gives visitors a behind the scenes view of paleontological research. The lab’s glass enclosure brings visitors directly into the scientist’s work stations, allowing them to watch experts clean and study new and current specimens. FossiLab is designed so that research volunteers can more easily interact with curious guests, a key goal for the Smithsonian.
“As technology improves, we learn more about the specimens — even the ones currently in our collection,” said Delahoussaye. “From the original concept, there was a strong interest in letting the researchers engage with the public and having them understand that this work is ongoing.”
Also reopening on June 8 is the renovated West Court Atrium, home to an improved cafeteria and new restaurant. The first-floor restaurant provides a perfect viewing area for the newly installed megalodon, a prehistoric, 50-foot shark. The space is warm, inviting, and organized for the museum’s millions of annual visitors. A key element of the design is a large custom wall graphic, an enlarged illustration by Ernst Haeckel, which provided an inspiration for the color palette of various materials such as woods, metals, natural stone, and polished concrete. The ceiling is open and blacked out with a series of eclectic light fixtures placed sporadically through the space providing visual interest and a warm glow.
“Prior to the renovations, you always felt like you were in an artificial setting, but so much of the museum’s story is about Earth’s broader ecosystem,” said Hirsch. “The spaces have remarkably changed. They feel more expansive and alive.”
EwingCole, in practice for over 55 years, is a nationally recognized, fully integrated architecture, engineering, interior design, and planning firm of more than 350 professionals in Charlotte, Irvine, New York, Raleigh, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh. Our multi-disciplinary practice is built on the core values of professional excellence, design quality, and collaboration. Our goal is to provide the best total solution for our clients, the community, and the environment. For additional information, visit: http://www.ewingcole.com.
New restrictions have gone into effect regarding American travel to Cuba. The US Treasury announced it will no longer allow cruise ships or private water vessels to port in Cuba. This is causing quite a stir in the cruise and tour group community as more Americans visit Cuba by cruise ship than another other form of travel. The new restrictions also ban “people to people” trips, the most common method for education and tour groups to visit the island, unless travel was booked prior to June 5.
What does this mean for an estimated 800,000 travelers looking forward to their upcoming cruise to Cuba?
Check with your cruise line regarding their refund policy. Cruise lines with itineraries to Cuba have been responding by offering various refunds or credits. If you’re booked on an upcoming cruise to Cuba, check with your cruise line immediately to see what compensation they’re currently offering.
If you purchased travel insurance for your upcoming cruise, it’s unlikely this is considered a covered reason to cancel and receive a full refund. The cancellation reason (a change in a tour itinerary) would not be listed as a covered trip cancellation reason for most travel insurance policies. The only type of coverage that may issue up to a 75% refund of your nonrefundable trip costs is Cancel for Any Reason coverage. To qualify, you would have needed to purchase this specific coverage within 10-21 days of your initial trip deposit and insure 100% of the nonrefundable costs toward your trip. The cancellation must also occur at least 48 hours prior to the scheduled departure date.
If you haven’t purchased travel insurance for your upcoming cruise and you’re still within 10-21 days of making your initial deposit, you may still qualify for Cancel for Any Reason coverage! Run a quote or ask a travel insurance expert to see what your travel insurance options are at this time.
The experts at Yonder Travel Insurance have poured over hundreds of policies from the best travel insurance providers in the US to provide the best travel insurance recommendation for how YOU travel. Run a quick quote and compare travel insurance policies for your next trip using our instant quote tool.
SOURCE Yonder Travel Insurance
Het Scheepvaartmuseum (the National Maritime Museum) opened its new Main Gallery on 10 May with the impressive exhibition Republic at Sea. The exhibition explains how the Netherlands came to be a maritime nation, and tells the story of the Republic in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries through more than 50 masterpieces. The Main Gallery is the new starting point for visits to the museum and highlights the strong connection between the maritime world and Dutch society over the centuries. The exhibition ties in with the museum’s new motto: ‘Water connects worlds’.
Hero Image: Opening of new main gallery with exhibition ‘Republic at Sea’
The exhibition Republic at Sea addresses the crucial role of water in the history of the Dutch Republic. The objects on display – which include paintings, other works of art, and tools – offer scope for new historical perspectives. They place an often-told story in a broader context, drawing attention to the uglier side of economic prosperity and cultural wealth too.
The rise and success of Amsterdam as a global centre of trade
Many Dutch cities experienced great growth in the seventeenth century. Amsterdam developed into an important port with connections all over the world. While the nobility and the church still controlled almost everything elsewhere in Europe, it was the merchants who were pulling the strings in the Low Countries. They traded in every corner of the world, helping to increase their homelands’ prosperity. The wealthy and influential elite of Amsterdam loved to have distinguished-looking portraits painted of them. Two such important figures were Isaac Sweers and Constantia Bloemaert, whose portraits were painted in 1654. Isaac Sweers made a career for himself in the Dutch navy, and was eventually made a vice admiral. Constantia Bloemaert came from a prominent Antwerp family who had moved to Amsterdam and became active in the management of charities.
Global trade also led to the emergence of a maritime culture. Water played a big role in the lives of many inhabitants of the Dutch Republic. Merchants, admirals, and captains commissioned artists to produce paintings of their ships on distant shores or during successful naval battles. A new genre of painting emerged: marine art. The very wealthiest also took to the water for their own amusement. They would sail to their country houses in yachts, or take part in mock battles. An exquisite example of this is the painting Spiegelgevecht op het IJ (Mock battle on the IJ) by Abraham Storck (circa 1700). The largest object in the exhibition is a tent yacht from the Zaan region dating from 1760-80. Vessels like this allowed the wealthy to enjoy themselves on the inland waterways.
The uglier side of economic prosperity and cultural wealth
The great prosperity also had an uglier side. The ships of the Dutch East India Company and the Dutch West India Company literally had to fight their way to Asia and the Americas. The economic growth of the Dutch Republic came at the expense of the welfare of people elsewhere in the world and ultimately led to colonial oppression and the slave trade. The exhibition includes a porcelain figurine of an African man. This Chinese-made figurine was commissioned by a European (circa 1720). The figure features various elements typical of the Chinese style, such as the skirt and the lotus leaf, while the sun depicted on his forehead is a reference to the African continent. However, the golden collar around the figure’s neck is a clear European reference to slavery.
The latter years of the Republic
In the second half of the eighteenth century, the growth of the Dutch economy was slower than that in neighbouring countries. At the same time, the trade network remained in place for another two centuries. Developments in the sphere of international politics in particular had a negative impact on the Dutch Republic. The last section of the exhibition focuses on the declining years of the Republic. The exhibition concludes with a model of the Royal Barge, symbolizing the vision of the kingdom that came into being in 1813. The real Royal Barge, moored outside at the museum’s jetty, is a logical continuation of the exhibition Republic at Sea for visitors.
New Exhibition: Maps & Marvels
Exploring an unknown world
We couldn’t imagine life today without navigation systems and Google Maps. The vast amount of information and resources on Instagram, Pinterest, and Google puts the world at our fingertips. We can find out whatever we like with just a few taps or mouse clicks. But how could a seventeenth-century person learn about the world beyond their immediate surroundings, or even the world outside Europe? How did Dutch people imagine the world before their travels and had their views changed upon their return? What impressions did those who stayed behind gain of faraway places, and how did people bring the world into their homes? Het Scheepvaartmuseum proudly opened the exhibition Maps & Marvels on 10 May. This exhibition shows how Dutch seafarers navigated their way around the world from the seventeenth century onwards, and how their voyages coloured the European view of the world.
Cartography: refined works of art
The exhibition Maps & Marvels presents the development of cartography and the encounters with new parts of the world. From the end of the sixteenth century onwards, Dutch sailors ventured further and further away from home. Their discoveries of unknown territories formed the basis for increasingly refined maps. The smallest details were included, and the beautiful illustrations make each map a work of art. Het Scheepvaartmuseum’s map collection is one of the world’s most prestigious collections, and tells us a lot about the voyages of the time and about the science of cartography. The centuries-old maps transport visitors to the locations that shaped Dutch history: South Africa, Indonesia, Japan, Australia, and Brazil. The spectacular wall map of Amsterdam by Pieter Bast dating from 1597 forms the starting point.
Marvels: shameless showing off
The second part of the exhibition looks at the so-called ‘cabinet of curiosities’: a treasure trove of eye-catching objects brought from far-off lands to Europe, literally bringing the unknown world into people’s homes. Objects such as coconuts and nautilus shells were very rare and were considered showpieces. They were so valuable that they were embellished with silver or gold. These naturalia – in which art and nature were intertwined – were favourites among collectors: was art surpassing nature, or did nature trump art? The beautiful collection of curiosities in this exhibition included a large number of objects from a private collection that have never been exhibited before.
Travel reports and ethnographic studies described the flora and fauna as well as the newly-discovered peoples and their customs. The depictions of the people encountered were generally stereotypes. These illustrations were used in art and to decorate beautiful objects and curiosities. A silver seal of the Dutch East India Company in the form of the bust of an African man is an example of the stereotypical and racist impression of black people. It shows the man with bared teeth, wide-open eyes, a turban, earrings, and a silver slave collar around his neck.
Het Scheepvaartmuseum shows how water connects worlds. The museum showcases a wide range of impressive masterpieces and artefacts from one of the world’s finest maritime collections. In addition to exhibitions with a historical character, the museum exhibits work by contemporary international artists and designers. The museum draws 350,000 visitors each year, putting it among the top five most popular educational days out in the Netherlands and making it a major attraction for both domestic and international tourism.
Images of the exhibition of Republic at Sea, Maps and Marvels and the exterior and interior of the museum can be downloaded here: https://www.hetscheepvaartmuseum.nl/node/1728
SOURCE Het Scheepvaartmuseum (the National Maritime Museum)