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80 years anniverary

Skål International LONDON

1934 -  2014

80 years servicing the Travel and Tourism Industry

News & Press Release



For the latest news, please visit the Skål International UK website.

(don't forget to follow "our news" on Facebook!)


MEMBERSHIP up-date: We welcome the following new members:
Anita Sipos,
Trade Development Manager at Hungerian Tourism Authorities

Tel: 020 – 7823 0413 / email: trade@gotohungary.co.uk
Bob Stratone Managing Director at Eurolink Tours
Tel: 07796 170 185 / email: bob@eurolink-tours.co.uk

Tracy Ramsey is now Business Development Director at Baglioni Hotel London
Tel: 020 – 7368 5703 / email: t.ramsey@baglionihotel.com
Tolene van der Merwe is now Country Manager – UK & Ireland for South African Tourism
Tel: 020 -  8971 9350 / email: tolene@southafrica.net


Is this time of the year when we remind you about the membership fee for 2015.
We will be offering huge incentives for next year
Pay-up before the end of the year and we keep the same fee for you
New members pays only £75 the first year!
Discount if you are living out of London and cannot attend all our meetings
All new Young Skål will be free the first year

 SI London active members:
£110:00 renewal if paid before 31/12 2014
£125:00 renewal if paid after    31/12 2014.

 SI London NEW members:
£  75:00 for all new members and for the first year only & no joining fee will apply

 Active members and new members  living outside of M25 will benefit off a massive reduced fee.
Life & retired members:
£  75:00

 Young Skål:
first year is FREE for all Young Skål
£17:00 for renewal

Corporate membership:
£350:00 per company up to 4 members
The annual fee includes 01 (one) person to attend free of charge at all events and will be entitle to have their logo on SI London web-site and further special promotions.



Secretary Mats Wivesson has been appointed a trustee of the SI London Benevolent Fund.
Please read about YOUR benevolent fund on our web-site ww.skallondon.co.uk
I promise it is interesting reading and will probably surprise you a lot.

A message from our International Councillor, Paul Follows - Mexico is fast approaching and I am asking for raffle donations for the congress to help with the funds. Each year over the last few years payments to Skålleagues have been more than the additional funds raised in the year and so slowly the fund is gradually reducing.
The fund has helped three UK Skalleagues in the last year when the need has arisen which the Trustees have very speedily dealt with their requests. The assistance has been much appreciated by the Skalleague and their families and to see what it has done to help them in their hour of need would prompt each member to do what they can to assist the fund in the future. You also never know when the fund may be required to assist you.
Please help in arranging a prize, I can take small ítems with me or an envelope with a prize inside. All assistance will be greatly appreciated. I will be attending the National Committee meeting so you can give it to me there or send with your representative

A request from skålleague Fredrick Corrigan, Skål Orlando.
Dear Skålleagues,I need your help, if possible. I am involved in fund-raising projects for Universal Orlando Resort's charitable foundation, as well as a scholarship program for Skål Orlando. The Universal event takes place early November, and Skål's in early December.
I am hoping some of your good UK and European contacts and/or clients might want to trade six or seven night accommodation packages, valid during calendar year 2015 only - and subject to blackout and restrictions - in turn for the same kind of package here in the Orlando area.  Depending on the traded package, I can offer voucher accommodations for either a Universal property, or a condo at a resort in the tourist area.  One day admissions (for up to four people max) to a park or two are also very feasible. Again, it all depends on the package.
I have been doing this for a number of years now and it works well for everyone involved.  We get to raise funds for good causes to help those in need, and our respective trading partners have nice holidays in Orlando they can use for themselves, as an employee reward, or some charitable purpose. If you know anyone who may be interested, please contact Frederick Corrigan
Tel: +1.407.992.8102 (office), Skype: fcinfla, email: fred@fredcorrigan.com



WORLD TRAVEL MARKET, 3rd – 6th November:
Our stand number is EM298. Please feel free to use the stand as a meeting point (though not a meeting place) for all your business appointments.
Can you help us, a couple of hours only, with the stand representing Skål International?
We NEED you help! Contact: Tony Milhofer, 01608 645 645 or email   tony@rtstravel.com

WORLD TRAVEL MARKET, Skål London Event, 3rd November:
Meet international skålleagues (and Presidents), at our evening-event at the Aloft Hotel at 18.00.
Drinks and bites @ £25:00 per person. Pre-booking is essential!

CHRISTMAS, 11th December:
Christmas Luncheon at the Durrants Hotel on Thursday 11th December 2014.

New member – we welcome to Skål London from the Johannesburg club
Cara Stewart-Clark, director of The Platinum Suite. Telephone 077 569 45671 / email: carastcl@gmail.com.

London is the third top destination in the World!
Following a record-breaking year for London tourism, the capital has been rated third in the world in TripAdvisor 2014 Travellers’ Choice awards for Destinations.

London has had a blockbuster year, experiencing a surge in tourists not seen before by any other post-Olympic host city in the world. We’re delighted that London has again been recognised by millions as one of the best places on earth to come and visit.

During the last year record numbers of visitors to the capital, who have enjoyed everything this great city has to offer. There is no doubt the birth of the royal baby helped keep the eyes of the world on London in 2013, but the capital’s continued appeal among travellers around the world surpasses any one event. London is fast becoming known as the greatest place in the world to visit. These awards are based on millions of reviews and ratings by those that really matter - travellers themselves.

The 2014 TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Destinations winners:

World’s top 10

 1. Istanbul
 2. Rome
 3. London
 4. Beijing
 5. Prague
 6. Marrakech
 7. Paris
 8. Hanoi
 9. Siem Reap
 10. Shanghai

Europe’s top 10

 1. Istanbul
 2. Rome
 3. London
 4. Prague
 5. Paris
 6. Berlin
 7. Florence
 8. Barcelona
 9. St Petersburg
 10. Budapest

UK’s top 10

 1. London
 2. Edinburgh
 3. Torquay
 4. Liverpool
 5. Belfast
 6. York
 7. Bristol
 8. Llandudno
 9. Leeds
 10. Birmingham

Travellers’ Choice Destinations honour top travel spots worldwide based on the millions of reviews and opinions from TripAdvisor travellers. Award winners were determined using an algorithm that took into account the quantity and quality of reviews and ratings for hotels, attractions and restaurants in destinations worldwide, gathered over a 12-month period. 

NEW MEMBERS: A huge welcome to our new members:

Sneshka RICHTER, International Institute for Peace through Tourism (www.iipt.org.com ) 
David HARRISON, Travel & Tourism Consultancy


Skål International London / UK on Human Rights in Tourism

Click to read full report: Skål London / UK on Human Rights



Skål International London / UK looks at the future

Click to read full report: Skål London looks at the future 2014

 New Tigers at London Zoo
Three of the world’s rarest tigers have been born at London Zoo's Tiger Territory. While mum Melati relaxes with her new-borns, visitors to London Zoo can see six-year-old dad Jae Jae in Tiger Territory. The as-yet unsexed triplets were born to five-year-old Sumatran tigress Melati, on Monday 3 February 2014, after a 106-day pregnancy.

Born in the early hours of the morning and arriving within an hour of each other, the first cub arrived at 12:28am, the second at 12:59am, and the last was delivered at 1:18am, with keepers monitoring the whole birth using remote camera technology.  Melati and her cubs are remaining tucked away together inside their special cubbing dens with Melati only occasionally venturing away from her babies for food.

Zookeeper; said: “We couldn’t be more delighted with our new arrivals, and with how Melati is responding to her three cubs. “We’ve been observing them 24/7, and one of us is always on duty to keep an eye on the little ones throughout the night.
We’ve even been able to observe key milestones like their eyes opening and their tentative first steps.“While we still don’t know whether they’re boys or girls, we’re starting to see their personalities develop. We’ve nicknamed one Trouble, as it’s much bolder than the others – it was the first to start exploring its den and we’ve spotted it waking up its siblings when they fall asleep!”

With wild Sumatran tiger numbers estimated to be as low as 300 individuals, the cubs represent a huge achievement not just for ZSL London Zoo but for the global breeding programme of this critically endangered species.

 Heathrow’s NEW Terminal 2
The Queen’s Terminal (T2) at Heathrow will open on June 4, 2014, when a United Airlines flight from Chicago is scheduled to land at the new building early in the morning.
The £2.5 billion project includes the main Terminal 2 building, a monumental new sculpture by internationally-renowned artist, Richard Wilson RA, a 1,340-space car park and an energy centre and cooling station. The terminal is one of the UK’s largest privately funded construction projects and has provided jobs for nearly 35,000 people.
Terminal 2 will house 22 Star Alliances airlines as well as Aer Lingus, Virgin Atlantic Little Red and Germanwings air carriers.
In line with Vidal’s earlier airport designs, Terminal 2 will feature a bold undulating steel-framed roof that will control the flow of natural light. The roof will feature three large waves signifying the three main parts of the passenger journey: check-in, security control and boarding.
Construction of the new building, which took five years, has been completed without disruption to the daily operations of what is considered to be the world’s busiest airport. As Heathrow’s most sustainable terminal, Terminal 2 reduces CO2 emissions by 40 percent compared to the previous building and will be the UK’s first airport to be awarded a BREEAM rating for its sustainable building design.
Terminal 2 has been designed with the passenger at the heart. Building on the success of Terminal 5, it will bring together technology, architecture and human touches. The goal is to make every journey better for our passengers and bringing together 25 airlines in this light and airy space is just one more step in the transformation of Heathrow.
Luis Vidal commented ‘Airports are the Cathedrals of the 21st Century; they are the gateways to nations, and serve a public function. Putting passengers first and making it easy for airlines and workers have been our drivers at Heathrow; but above all, making it welcoming and comfortable; pragmatic and functional; flooded with natural light and providing for intuitive orientation for everyone.’


NEW MEMBERS: A huge welcome to our new members:

Tyrone KIDNEY, Hotel 41 (www.redcarnationhotels.com ) 
Fiona HARRIS, Director of International PR at Corinthia Hotels (www.corinthia.com )

 Skål London Board Members & Contact Details:
President:  Paul Hoskins
Tel: 020 - 8392 2264  / Email: p.hoskins@tiscali.co.uk

Past President:  Alison Partridge
Tel: 020 - 3015 8417  /  Email: alison@goingardens.com

First Vice President & Young Skål Development: Tolene van der Merwe 
Tel: 07983 - 956 739  / Email: tolene@boutiquetravelmarketing.com

Secretary & Web Master: Mats Wivesson
Tel: 020 - 8487 3528  /  Email: secretary@skallondon.co.uk

Treasurer: Robin Jackson 
Tel: 020-8325 8965  / Email: robin@ukgrouptravel.com

Membership Development Officer / Benevolent Fund Trustee:  Tony Milhofer 
Tel:01608 645645  /  Email: membership@skallondon.co.uk

Marketing, Press & Publicity: Philip Cooke
Tel: 01452 500 663  / Email: philip@thedmg.co.uk

Event Coordinator: Position Vacant

International Counsellor: Paul Follows 
Telephone: 01892 - 661 532  / Email: paul.follows@btinternet.com

IT & Social Media: Brian Donnelly
Tel:07834 770 442  /  Email: brian@morethanmice.com

Board Member: Jennifer Wilson
Tel: 020 - 7263 7277 / Email: jwilsonpixelle@supanet.com

Young Skål representative: Cristian Tesuleanu
Tel: 0793 9868 480 / email: tecro20590@shms-mail.ch



 NEW MEMBERS: A huge welcome to our new members:
Raymond CARRION; Business Development Director at Consularcare ( www.comsularcare.co.uk )
Mikko MYLLYLA;       Customer Service Executive at Booking.com (www.booking.com )

Fund Raising I
Tony Milhofer is swimming for charity! Saturday March 8th  Tony will be swimming for the Rotary Club of Milton Keynes annual swimathon at the Stantonbury Pool Central Milton Keynes. During the last 20 years that Tony have been swimming for this cause they have raised in excess of £ 400,000 for local charities which will make lives better for a small number of people in need.
Message from Tony: “”You are aware of the fact that I have to walk with a stick because I have Spinal Stenosis but in the water I am just the same as everyone else. if any friend or member of Skål International would care to sponsor me for this event please simply send me an e-mail (rts@rtstravel.com ) indicating how many pounds you are prepared to donate and all I need is name, private address and postcode and your confirmation that you are a taxpayer so that we may claim gift aid and after the event I will send you confirmation of what I have done and a request for payment.  Thanks for your support – Tony Milhofer



Fund Raising II
Message from our member Brian Dunn:  “”I'm looking forward to participate in this year’s London Marathon on the 13 of April. As always I will be running to raise money to support the Prostate Cancer Research Centre’s important work. My goal is to raise at least £4,000 to help beating Cancer. I'm writing to ask for your support as a sponsor, Run with me to help raise money for this important cause or just make a small donation. Please contact me on email: eat@mestizomx.com
Thanks for your support – Brain Dunn



Interesting Facts & Figures on the musical The Phantom of the Opera!

The musical version of The Phantom of the Opera is the most successful piece of entertainment of all time, produced in any media, and its success is continuing all over the world.
•It is estimated that Phantom has been seen by more than 130 million people, and the total worldwide gross is now in excess of $5.6 billion.
•The show has won over 70 major theatre awards including three Olivier Awards, the most recent being the 2002 Oliver Audience Award for Most Popular Show, an Evening Standard Award, seven Tony Awards including Best Musical, seven Drama Desk Awards and three Outer Critic Circle Awards.
•The Phantom of the Opera opened at Her Majesty’s Theatre, London on 27th September 1986, so is now in its 28th year, and at the Majestic Theatre in New York on 9th January 1988.
•The London production of The Phantom of the Opera celebrated its 25th Anniversary in October 2011 with a series of 3 performances at London’s Royal Albert Hall.
•The Phantom of the Opera became Broadway’s longest running show ever when it overtook the record set by Cats with its 7,486th performance on January 6th 2006. It is the only Broadway show ever to celebrate anniversaries through 18 to 25 years.
•The West End production played its 10,000th performance on 23 October 2010.
•The Broadway production played its 10,000th performance on 11th February 2012.
•The box-office revenues are higher than any other film or stage play in history – including Titanic, ET and Star Wars.
•The Phantom of the Opera has been produced in 151 cities, in 30 countries around the world, including Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Denmark, England, Germany, Holland, Hong Kong, Hungary, Ireland, Japan, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Scotland, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand and The United States.
•Playing worldwide it has been translated into no fewer than 13 languages: English, French, German, Japanese, Danish, Polish, Swedish, Castilian, Hungarian, Dutch, Korean, Portuguese and Mexican Spanish.
•The original cast album of The Phantom of the Opera was the first in British musical history to enter the music charts at number 1.
•Album sales, including original cast recording, foreign language recordings, studio recordings and the film soundtrack now exceed 40 million.
•The cast album has gone 6 times platinum in the US, twice platinum in the UK, 9 times platinum in German, 4 times platinum in the Netherlands, 11 times platinum in Korea and 31 times platinum in Taiwan.     
•Joel Schumacher directed a big screen version of the show which was released worldwide at the end of 2004. It starred Gerard Butler as The Phantom, Emmy Rossum as Christine, Patrick Wilson as Raoul and Minnie Driver as Carlotta.
•‘Learn to Be Lonely’, a new song written for the movie, was nominated for Best Original Song at the 2005 Oscars. Beyonce performed the song at the ceremony.
•Phantom – The Las Vegas Spectacular opened in a purpose built theatre at the Venetian Resort Hotel on 24th June 2006. The production cost $75 million, making the new 95-minute version the most expensive musical extravaganza of all time.

 Some technical facts about the original production of The Phantom of the Opera
•The dazzling replica of the Paris Opera House chandelier is made up of 6,000 beads consisting of 35 beads to each string. It is three metres wide and weighs one ton. The touring version falls at two an a half metres per second. The original version was built by five people in four weeks.
•The Phantom’s make-up takes two hours to put on and 30 minutes to take off. The face is moisturized, closely shaved and the prosthetics are fitted, setting immediately, before two wigs, two radio mics and two contact lenses (one white and one clouded) are placed.
•2,230 metres of fabric are used for the drapes, 900 of them specially dyed. The tasseled fringes measure 226 metres. They are made up of 250 kilos of dyed wool interwoven with 5,000 wooden beads imported from India. Each one is handmade and combed through with an Afro comb.
•There are 130 cast, crew and orchestra members directly involved in each performance.
•Each performance has 230 costumes, 14 dressers, 120 automated cues, 22 scene changes, 281 candles and uses 250 kg of dry ice and 10 fog and smoke machines.
•The touring production takes 27 articulated lorries to transfer the set between theatres.


Chinese History Exhibition in London.
Opens on September 18th in the Sainsbury Exhibitions Gallery of British Museum.
The exhibition is called Ming: 50 years that changed China.

The exhibition will track the time from 1400 to 1450 in China, which was an important part of the nation's history. It's the first time an exhibition has explored the big changes in culture and society that made Beijing the capital during this period and were linked to the creation of the Forbidden City.
The exhibition, in place until January 4th 2015, covers themes of life at court, culture, trade, people's beliefs, diplomacy and the military.


 NEW MEMBERS: A huge welcome to our new members:

Adam SARGEANT, Project Director at PEOPLE1ST (www.people1st.co.uk )
Brian DUNN, Marketing Director at Mestizo Mexican Restaurant ( www.mestizomx.com )
Cristian TESULEAUNU, Front Office Managememt Team at Britannia International Hotel ( www.www.britanniahotels.com )
Robert BESANTDirector at Harris & Besant Ltd (www.robbesant.com )
Caroline ORIOKOT, Director at African Connexions Ltd ( www.africanconnextions.com )

Full membership Directory on the website: www.skallondon.co.uk




February - AGM and National Committee Meeting, Skål UK
Skål UK National AGM is scheduled for 7 February 2014 at Reigate Manor Hotel commencing 1.30 pm.
 Please make a note in your diary.  There are vacancies on the National Executive – interested?

 March - The CONFEX Networking Meeting, Skål London
Join us at Hilton Olympia Hotel on the 12th March at 17.30 and onwards. Relax with drinks and canapés after a busy day at Confex Exhibition.

 April - Skål UK National Meeting 2014, Skål UK
Skål UK National Meeting will be in London!  Please pencil in 25th & 26th April. Further information to follow but it will be “A day to Remember”.

 May – Spring Luncheon, Skål London
Wednesday 14 May 2014 12:15 - 15:30.
Join fellow Skål members and guest for enjoyable Spring Luncheon at the Raymond Blanc Brassiere, Southbank. It’s the time for our big raffle and other surprises!

 July – Summer Garden Party, Skål London
Wednesday 09 July 2014 18:00 - 21:00
 Skål London cordially invites you and guests to a Summer Garden Party at Kensington Close Hotel.
This event is in conjunction with The Meetings Show UK in London running from 9th to11th July.

 December – World Travel Market, Skål London
Monday 3rd November - It will be a BIG party as we will celebrate our 80th anniversary. Skål London was founded on the 27th November 1934

Dear Skålleagues,
I am sure you are aware of the terrible typhoon which struck the Philippines this weekend; reportedly the worst ever recorded which has left thousands of people dead and many hundreds of thousands more homeless without food or drinking water. The emergency relief agencies have already swung into gear to assist with the most essential assistance.
I am writing to you to appeal, once again, to your generosity this time to help the Filipino people. You may remember that after the tsunami which hit South East Asia on 26 December 2004, Skål International appealed for donations which were used to support projects in India, Sri Lanka and Thailand. You may rest assured that 100% of donations collected will be used on projects which will be proposed by Skål International Philippines who, I believe, are the most qualified to identify the neediest causes.
Below you find a copy of the press release which has been sent to the travel media this morning which has all the details with regard to the bank account opened for donations. I am sure I can count on the solidarity and generosity of Skål members for their help.
Yours sincerely and Skål
Karine Coulanges

Skål International pledges support for the Philippines
Along with everyone around the world, Skål International is devastated by the horrendous loss of life and damage suffered by the Filipino people as a result of super typhoon Haiyan. While international aid agencies and governments rush to supply much needed medical and humanitarian aid Skål International stresses the need for planning to immediately start on the rebuilding of the infrastructure, both at a local as well as national level.
“Our experience with the 2004 Boxing Day Tsunami was that while aid poured into the affected areas it was the rebuilding of infrastructure after the immediate “first aid” that was so badly needed.” states Skål International World President, Karine Coulanges. “We have already been in contact with our senior Skål personnel in the Philippines who advise that the capital Manila escaped serious damage, however cities across the central Philippines took the brunt of the wind and sea serge damage”.
Skål International Manila President & International Councillor for the Philippines, Patria Chiong is in contact with Manila based Skål personnel and endeavouring to make personal contact with clubs in Bacalod, Cebu, and Makati to check on their members and their families, as well as establish the damage to the travel and tourism plant in the regions. An update is also being prepared on the travel and tourism infrastructure that has not been damaged or affected so the word can go out to the industry that certain regions in the Philippines are open for business and ready and waiting to attract much needed tourist dollars.
In terms of action Skål International has set up a PHILIPPINES RELIEF fund so its 18,000 members from 85 countries along with friends and colleagues in the travel and tourism industry can contribute. The fund will be established to offer financial assistance to one of more special projects in the affected regions. Skål International in association with Skål Philippines will select local projects and work with an on ground NGO to ensure oversight of the expenditure sees 100% of the funds invested into the project. States Karine Coulanges “After the 2004 Tsunami Skål International worked with the Skål organisations in India, Sri Lanka and Thailand using local NGO expertise overseen by Skål International personnel.
We wanted to ensure the local people saw the full benefit of the funds raised. We want to be able to offer the Philippines the same opportunity.” “We invite colleagues and companies from the travel and tourism industry to work with us in the project. Globally we all benefit from tourists travelling to destinations such as the Philippines and it is times like this that we can give back.”  
The Skål International account for the PHILIPPINES APPEAL is:
Bank: BBVA Holder: Skål International (Philippines appeal)
Account number: 0182 0481 61 0201658720
IBAN: ES93 0182 0481 6102 0165 8720

For donations by credit card, please contact yolanda.sanchez@skal.org
The account is in Euro but we can receive donations in any currency.


SKÅL & World Travel Market

Never before have we, Skål International, been so much active and involved in WTM

Come and join us!

WTM - November 4th - 7th;   Skål WTM Stand: UKI 118

 World Tourism Award

SKÅL International will be honored with the prestigious World Tourism Award 2013

Location: World Travel Market, ExCel, London

Venue:   Platinum Suite 4, Level 3

Date:     November 4, 2013

Time:     16:30 – 17:00 Ceremony

            17:00 - 17:30 Networking Reception


Skål International London WTM Networking Event

Date: Monday, November 4th 2013 Time: from 5:30pm to 8pm.

Place: A networking drinks reception at the Aloft Hotel adjacent to Excel.

Note: A truly international reception with over 100 skålleagues from over 25 different clubs attending!

Booking: Secure your reservation on-line - https://skalwtm2013.eventbrite.co.uk/.    

or send your cheque, payable to Skål London, Robin Jackson, Treasurer, Skål London


WTM Seminar - Human Rights in Tourism!  

The topic will be Human Rights and what is the Tourism Industry doing about it?

A joint seminar with the Tourism Society at the World Travel Market.


Mok Singh, Immediate Past President of Skål International

Stephanie Ossenbach, Project Manager Corporate Responsibility, Kuoni

Mark Watson, Executive Director, Tourism Concern

Date: Wednesday 06 November 2013, 12:30 - 14:00

Place: Excel, South Gallery 23+24.

Note: Please note that the seminar is free of charge and everyone are welcome!


WTM Seminar - Building a Culture of Peace through Tourism!

Date: Tuesday, 5th November at 14.00 - 15.00

Place: The Platinum Suite Stage of World Travel Market


Dr. Taleb Rifai, Secretary General UNWTO

David Scowsill, President, World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC)

Mok Singh, Immediate Past President, Skal International

Geoffrey Lipman, President, International Coalition of Tourism Partners (ICTP)

Martin Craigs, President, Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA).

In 2012 Britain welcomed over 31 million inbound visitors, who altogether contributed more than £18.6 billion to the economy. 2013 has seen further progress on this strong performance. In the first seven months of this year spending by visitors increased by 13% in nominal terms to £11.2 billion - a record high. (And that spending does not incl. two Russian millionaires spending £130.000 on booze in only three hours at Kitsch nightclub in Mayfair-London.)


President: Karine Coulanges (Paris, France)

Vice Presidents: Marianne Krohn (Hannover, Germany) Membership Development & Young Skål

Salih Cene (Antalya, Turkey) Statutes teaming with Lou Conkling

Directors: Nigel Pilkington (Auckland, New Zealand) PR & Communications/Special Projects Asia

Lou Conkling (Louisville, U.S.A.) Business Affairs including Congress Manual teaming with Salih Cene  

David Fisher (Nairobi, Kenya) Finances and Florimond Volckaert Fund teaming with Marianne Krohn



President: Keith Murcott (South Africa)

Vice Presidents: Paul Follows (United Kingdom)  and Bernard Whewell (Australia)

Secretary: Susanna Saari (Finland)


SKÅL CLUB OF THE YEAR 2012-2013:  Skål International Ixtapa (Mexico)



2014; 25-30 October MEXICO CITY

2015; 01-06 Nobember KENYA COAST

Alison Partridge, President of Skål London,
has moved to Ealing, West London. Her new contact details are:

Alison Partridge,Managing Director
Going Gardens / International Garden Tourism Consultancy
52 Madeley Road,
London W5 2LU

Tel: +44 (0)781 475 9025
Email: alison@goinggardens.com Web: www.goinggardens.com


Thai-dinner with speaker on 19thSeptember:
Skål London goes to Thailand or as close as it can get when we meet up at the Thai restaurant,  Patara Restaurant, 15 Greek Street, Soho. Guest speaker will be Chris Lee, Trade Marketing Manager from Tourism Authority of Thailand

Networking luncheon with speaker on 17th October:
We can confirm that Gregg Hone from Electric Jelly/Evolve (www.electricjelly.com/evolve ) as speaker at our luncheon.
The theme is “Social Marketing in Travel/Hospitality”.
Venue to be confirmed.

The Skål International London WTM Networking Event:
 Monday, November 4th 2013 Time: from 5:30pm to 8pm.

A networking drinks reception at the Aloft Hotel adjacent to Excel. The hotel is an exciting property and even if you don't plan to attend WTM on the Monday, access is possible through the east end. Aloft London Excel, One Eastern Gateway, Royal Victoria Dock • London, England E16 1FR,

Note:  A truly international reception with over 100 skålleagues from over 25 different clubs attending! Pre-booking is essential!

Detailed information and booking contact:
Alison Partridge Tel: +44 (0)781 475 9025 / Email: alison@goinggardens.com


Human Rights in Tourism!
A joint seminar with the Tourism Society at the World Travel Market. Wednesday, 6th November 2013 from 2pm to 3pm Excel, South Gallery 23+24.

The topic will be Human Rights and what is the Tourism Industry doing about it? Speakers are to be confirmed!

Please note that the seminar is free of charge and everyone is welcome! Skål International President Mok Singh will attend WTM and the seminar.  Contact Paul Follows tel: 01892-661 532 / email: paul.follows@btinternet.com  

Skål International News

Skål International presents its position on the Aviation Market It is Skål International’s contention that the aviation industry must continue to move towards a safer and more environmentally sound footing by working holistically with international aviation and intergovernmental organisations. However the aviation industry also needs to work more closely with national and regional tourism boards when planning and re-aligning routes and schedules. On too may occasions short-term revenue pressures have seen airlines remove services from destinations that result in great financial and economic harm to these regions. In some cases areas have never recovered from these situations. While airlines must manage their businesses to ensure shareholder expectations, it is also vital that they and their shareholders take a wider view of the travel and tourism industry when making major route change decisions.

Skål supports the aviation industry in its move to continue to be one of the safest, most efficient and environmentally sound industries, without undue interference from individual governments introducing adhoc regulations, that at best can be seen as revenue gathering, and at worst major impediments to the aviation industry achieving its goals.

“It is vital that an organisation such as ours, that covers all facets of the travel and tourism industry, has a clear and concise position on an industry as important as aviation. It is our intention to make it clear to governments, both local and national, that adhoc regulations such as cuts to air traffic management systems and the introduction of localised airline taxes have a dramatic effect on the whole travel and tourism industry, and in some cases see the loss of employment, not just in the immediate industry but via the trickle-down effect of an entire economy. It is also important to note that the footprint of aviation goes beyond the stakeholders in the aviation industry alone, particularly in developing countries. This often includes education and growth in skill sets which offer opportunities for foreign employment impacting inward remittances and economic upliftment of subsets of the population.” says Mok Singh – World President Skal International.

“Skål calls on all these sectors to ensure they work together to ensure that the consumer is provided with the best possible service in terms of safety, efficiency and environmental concerns. This can only be done if all parties work towards this goal and are prepared to closely audit their own positions when making decisions that affect the industry.” he continued.

NEW MEMBERS: A huge welcome to our new members:

Michael CHURNSIDE, Managing Director,  CBT Travel (www.cbttravel.co.uk )

Vineeth PURUSHOTAMAN, Managing Director, Hospitality Sales Solution Ltd (www.hospitalitysalessolution.co.uk

Diana HALL, Sales Executive, British Association of Hotel Representatives

Justin DAICH, Young Skål

Paul HOSKINS, Managing Director, Fulcrum Marketing + PR ( www.fulcrumMarketing.uk.com )

Full membership Directory on the website: www.skallondon.co.uk

Skål UK News

Skål UK EGM and National Committee Meeting Friday 20 September 2013, 1330hrs @ Reigate Manor Hotel

This is the official call to both an EGM and the National Committee Meeting which will be held on Friday 20 September 2013 at Reigate Manor Hotel, Reigate Hill, Reigate Surrey, RH2 9PF. There will be an Extra-Ordinary General Meeting to consider recommenations by the National Executive Committee at its last meeting. Immediately following the EGM as above, there will be a National Executive Committee meeting to which all UK Skålleagues are invited. The agenda will be circulated in due course but we need your confirmation of attendance for catering in advance.

RSVP for both please to webmaster@skaluk.org with a copy to Sally Gray at sallyskal@btinternet.com

Travel Industry – Discounted Rates / additional membership benefits

Skål International has reached agreement with TIS, based in the UK. TIS is a trading name for Travelbrands, which offers excellent worldwide travel discounts on hotels, travel packages, cruises and airfares to travel professionals. The arrangement with TIS is that Skålleagues can avail of the industry discounts that they provide. Please go to the benefits section of our Skål website to register for the TIS product line. You will see a link for TIS. Click on this link and it will take you to the TIS registration page. Click on Register (near login) and complete the simple form. Make sure to select Skål as your affiliation and use your Skål membership card number for the employee number and create your password for future visits. Now you can browse the TIS website as often as you like to avail of great travel benefits. The travel supplier sets the criteria for membership discounts, and many suppliers will allow family and friends to take advantage of their deals, similar to an Interline Discount Club. This is in addition to the benefits provided by Skålleagues for Skålleagues, which are in the benefits section of our website.


A huge welcome to our new members:

Burak IPEKCI, Managing Director of Big Red Tub Web Solutions. A internet, web design, social media company for hotels and Tourism Marketing. ( www.bigredtub.com )

Ian EPPS, Director of International relations for ITP-International Travel Partnership. A multinational business travel network. ( www.itptravel.net )

Full membership Directory on the website: www.skallondon.co.uk


Those prize winners who did not collect their prizes at the President’s Dinner event, have now been notified by post. Receipts from ticket sales this year were £691.00, which when added to donations made of £50.00, resulted in a grand total £ 741.00. A really splendid effort. Very many thanks to everyone involved.

Skål London, Prize Winners List 2013

NEW MEMBERSA huge welcome to our new members:
Lanu ADEPITAN, Director of Cruise Holidays UK Ltd, the specialist in World Wide Cruises.
Jennifer WILSON, President of Pixelle Ltd, a television production, travel media company.


  Skål UK – 200 Club
Help the running of the UK National part of this great organisation and all it costs is £12 per share. The idea of this fund raising activity is to help the National funds but there is a guarantee that 50% of all money collected is returned to the membership in the form of a monthly draw so the more shares bought the bigger the monthly prize money will be.




 WORLD TRAVEL MARKET – name change!
Don’t be confused when information and invitations’ from the WTM starts rolling in. The WTM Meridian Club has been renamed to WTM Buyers’ Club. The Meridian Club was launched 1992 and according to WTM Chairman Fiona Jeffrey the name change “will see WTM continue and improve upon its offer to buyers”. 

 Young Skål Workshop  Gerona, Spain, 11th to 14th, 2013.

 An invitation to Skål Clubs all over the world, where the movement of Young Skål is being working hard or starting to have new Young Professional Skålleagues.

It will be the opportunity to invest in young Skål from each country, and we have prepared a program focused also on them as you can see as low cost as possible, and we are still finishing the little details.


I encourage all Clubs to organize an action towards this idea of making it possible. We need to believe in ourselves, we can choose at least one young Skal leader en every country to make it at the congress, and we will take good care of him/her because he/she for sure will help us in the coming future, for sure.


For further information please contact

Teresa Díaz Comas

Tel. direct *34.679.988935

Skype:  tere.diaz.comas   /  Twitter: @terediazcomas

Email:terediaz@langle.biz   /   www.skalgirona.com


Congratulation Tolene!

Then on the 26th, in the late evening, Tolene went into labour and little Oliver Jacob van der Merwe was born on the 27th December at 02:54 weighing a healthy 3.02kg

He was in Special Care for a week as he had fluid on his lungs and ToleneI contracted chickenpox from somewhere so was not allowed to see him for a few days, Tolene was isolated in the maternity ward for five days and little Oliver was as well isolated in case he had contracted it.  Happily it was not the pox but an allergic reaction to medication. Oliver and Tolene came home on the 2nd January and he is doing a great job of sleeping during the day and keeping the family awake at night.

We wish them all the best!




The first Skål Club to be established in mainland China has been officially approved by the Chinese government authorities. Skål International Beijing has been officially formed with both Chinese and non Chinese nationals as individual members.

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 Skål London is twinned with:

London & New York

The Skål Clubs of London, UK and New York, USA were twinned on November 9th, 2010

London & Paris

The Skål Clubs of London, UK and Paris, France were twinned on April, 28th 2009.



Skål International
1934 -  2014

80 years servicing the Travel and Tourism Industry