Romantics: it's time to plan your Valentine's trip
If there's someone really special in your life, you may want to splash out on a really special Valentine's treat. The cost (for two) of the big night in the fivestar Radisson SAS in Dublin is 380 for a luxury suite, champagne, chocolates, candlelit dinner and, of course, a red rose. Call 01 2186154. Or you could check out the airline websites for a pair of cheap tickets to London on the 14th and use the savings to splurge on a suite in the five-star Conrad Hotel in Chelsea Harbour. A night of good food, pink cocktails and pink champagne and a choice of pillow types will set you back A£475, including a couple of bonus his and her gifts. Call 00 44 207 8233000.
Top holiday guide now on sale priced 1.95
HOLIDAY 2005, the annual guide to the world of holidays and travel from Ireland, and in Ireland, edited by yours truly, is in the shops again. New destinations in eastern Europe get a lot of attention this year as does North America, where the cheap dollar is tempting record numbers of Irish shoppers and holidaymakers to cross the Atlantic. Hugely popular South Africa is strongly featured as is soaraway Dubai (above) and the lakes and mountains of middle Europe. And readers could win the holiday of a lifetime in exotic Borneo.
All in all, a strong package at the very fair price of just 1.95. If I say so myself.
Watch out for purple dinosaurs down in Cork
Kids staying at the Trabolgan Holiday Village in east Cork this summer will get to meet the 'real' Barney, the purple dinosaur who will be appearing in his own show twice weekly. Visiting groups like Bagatelle and the American Drifters will entertain the grownups.
Other developments at the resort include a makeover for the 18-hole par three golf course and the upgrading of the health and beauty centre, Trabolgan reopens on 18 March and if you book before 28 February you get a 10% discount on the brochure cost. Call 021 4661551 or book on www. trabolgan. com
Kids go free in Disneyland Paris special offer
To boost business in the cool (or even cold) winter months, Disneyland Paris has teamed up with Air France to fly in a few batches of 'free' kids from Ireland. Actually, though, every such child must be accompanied by two fare paying adults. The offer, available until 24 March, should be booked through Abbey Travel on 01 8047100 or Neenan Travel on 01 6079900.
Supermarket offers hotel breaks for tokens
An annual off season home holiday promotion generated 17,000 'bed nights' and contributed 17 million to the Irish hotel industry in 2004, according to the Supervalu chain. Customers who save 50 tokens (one token for every 10 spent) can book a short break in a three or four-star hotel for 89 in the Republic, A£59 in the north. Tokens can also be traded for a week long selfcatering family holiday at 299. Bookings should be made on 0818 302002.
Dublin airport just gets busier and busier
The arrival of ten new scheduled airlines at Dublin Airport boosted passenger figures to a record 17.1 million in 2004, And with no sign of a second terminal coming on stream anytime soon and at least seven new services planned to commence in the first six months of this year, the chaos is set to continue.
Give your fellow, and the family, a bit of 'Yelloh'
If you've yet to decide on the location of that French family holiday, you should add the 'Yelloh' Villages brochure to the growing pile. Choose from 32 widely scattered sites, accommodation that includes chalets, mobile homes and furnished tents and activities such as golf, horse riding and fitness classes. These purpose built holiday 'villages', which can be booked with or without ferry travel, also have clubs for kids and teenagers. Call 0044 870 9019 for a brochure.
Sunway reopen Asian holidays to help local trade
Sunway Holidays says that in response to requests for support from hoteliers and agents in the stricken tsunami region, it has decided to continue selling destinations which it had planned to discontinue for the moment.
Holidays are again available in all parts of Thailand except Phuket, in Malaysia, Bali (above), India and the Maldives (restricted programme).