Travel Markets Insider Newsletter Vol. 17 No. 12

The Travel Markets Insider newsletter is attached to this post as a PDF file. To open the PDF file, please click on this link.

It has been a busy week for major news throughout the region and the world.

On the international stage, beauty giants Coty and P&G finally confirmed the acquisition rumors that have been buzzing for months, announcing that Coty would buy 43 of Procter & Gamble’s beauty brands for about $12.5 billion. The brands include prestige fragrances, color cosmetics and hair care and when finalized the deal is expected to double Coty’s current sales. The complicated transaction is expected to take at least a year to complete. See details on page 3.

In regional news, Cuba‘s development as a major tourist destination got another boost when the U.S. Department of Commerce granted Carnival Corp permission to sail its new Fathom cruise line to the island. Carnival expects to set sail for Cuba next May, but the venture still must be approved by Cuban authorities. In more Cuba cruise news, MSC’s Opera will homeport in Havana this coming winter. Page 1.

Money problems. Baha Mar, the mega-resort in the Bahamas heralded to open with great fanfare at the end of March, has yet to welcome any guests and has filed for bankruptcy protection, blaming its Chinese builders for construction delays. Page 3.

Looking for more money. Panama’s Tocumen Airport is planning to launch a second bond issue to complete funding for the airports’s new South Terminal under construction. Page 2.

. ACI says passenger growth stayed steady in May. Page 2.

Tobacco limits. The DUTY FREE WORLD COUNCIL is urging retailers around the world to heed the inbound allowances for tobacco products when they sell to passengers traveling to destinations with restricted allowances, especially with many new limits in effect. Details on page 2.

PEOPLE. Two popular beauty execs – Michael Gebrael and Virginie Descamps –have new positions. See page 1.

Diageo crowned the top World Class Cruise Bartender in Miami last week. Celebrity Cruise’s Santos Mercedes Enriquez will now go on to the World Class Global Final in Cape Town, South Africa on Aug. 28. More than just a competition, the World Class event includes training at Diageo’s World Class Academy. More than 10,000 cruise bartenders have been trained over the past three years, Sandra Vaucher, Diageo’s Director of Global Cruise and Airlines tells TMI. Food & Beverage Directors from Celebrity Cruises, Royal Caribbean International and Norwegian Cruise Lines also explain how they will be using the program to elevate the cocktail experience onboard their ships. Lois Pasternak reports.