Learn from innovation cases

Learn from innovation cases

Grønbechs Gård

Grønbechs Gård

Crafts & Design Center Bornholm – Grønbechs Gård is a private association with only one employee on the payroll. We are partly subsidized by the municipality and partly commercial. We show art/ craft and design, host conferences and lectures and act as a selling agent for the artist showing with us. The center is solely run by 40 volunteers, these 60-70 yr old act as the front personnel and are therefore  a rich resource for service innovation. The volunteers come from…

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Aarhus By Light – interactive mural entertainment

Aarhus By Light – interactive mural entertainment

Aarhus by Light is an experiment in media facades. As part of the media facades project, he Concert Hall Aarhus, one of the largest in Europe, presents a new interactive media facade that invites guests and passers-by to encounter and partake in a new dimension of the renowned cultural institution. Luminous creatures live in the facade. As the guests approach, they enter their world which is itself part of the city. The creatures are social beings, and they enjoy other…

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Sustainable destination development in Punta Cana

Sustainable destination development in Punta Cana

Punta Cana is the biggest tourism destination in the Dominican Republic, and the third biggest in the Caribbean, attracting more than 2 million visitors a year. What began as a hotel development in the early 1970s has grown to include the Grupo Punta Resort and Club, Punta Cana International Airport, Punta Cana Ecological Foundation, and Punta Cana Community Foundation, among other destination attractions and real-estate developments. The project involved building an entire infrastructure in a region of the country that…

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Diablo Canyon Rural Planning Area

Diablo Canyon Rural Planning Area

Diablo Trust is a land management team that was initiated in 1993 by two farming families the Metzgers and the Prossers to provide a forum for the community to actively participate in land stewardship. The Diablo Trust is an innovative approach to rural planning in Arizona between 1998 and 2000, called the “Growing Smarter Legislation”. Landowners were encouraged to petition for the establishment of Land Trusts that would effectively assume planning responsibility for rural faming lands and adjacent tenures within…

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Tasting Arizona

Tasting Arizona

Tasting Arizona is a consortium of tourism, non-government, indigenous, farming, education, community, festival and food organizations that aim to provide ‘local flavor’ to customers in Arizona (see Table 1). Tasting Arizona began as a series of workshops held in 2007 as part of a project of the Center for Sustainable Environments at Northern Arizona University. The philosophy behind Tasting Arizona is that visitors want local flavor and they have identified a range of food products that represent the taste and…

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Interactive wall in a tourism office

Interactive wall in a tourism office

The multimedia wall in the tourism office in Cape Town allows the visitors to get a new and far more animated version of the guide book or the tourist brochure. The visitors can activate animations of attractions in the area, and the sceneries are illustrated and text information is also displayed. Multiple visitors can play at the same time. The installation helps the visitors to plan their day in Cape town. The video goes behind the screen and explains the…

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A community involved in its own development – Las Terrazas, Cuba

A community involved in its own development – Las Terrazas, Cuba

Las Terrazas in Pinar Del Rio, Cuba is described as tan verde que es possible – as green as it gets. However, this 12,355 acre complex has not always been that well preserved. The area was once one of the poorest in the province, both economically and ecologically. In 1967 the government sponsored a massive reforestation effort, enlisting local companies to plant 10 million trees across 5,000 acres. And in the early 1990s the Minister of Tourism recognized both the…

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Dilemmas in gourmet innovation for ski and hiking enthusiasts

Dilemmas in gourmet innovation for ski and hiking enthusiasts

Beitostølen in Norway is by tradition a winter resort but more actively also catering for guests in the summer. In addition over the last years great efforts have been put on developing the shoulder seasons in order to utilize capacity and to maintain a stable and highly qualified workforce. The visionary owners thus introduced the idea to turn Beitostølen into “a wellbeing destination”. A comprehensive competence in rehabilitation and a number of health related sports events and activities supported the…

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Combining travelling and microfinancing

Combining travelling and microfinancing

There are numerous micro credit institutes that provide funds for small tourism in developing countries. Many of them seek to create good relations and information flows between investors and the small business people. It is important for the investors that somebody is backing their projects both financially and morally. The non-profit micro credit institute Investours has widened the offer to tourists. Investour organizes “microfinance tours” — a new brand of goodwill tourism that takes the whole small-loan concept and puts…

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Telling city history on location

Telling city history on location

Nevada City in California is a small city characterized by it’s historical buildings hailing from a glamorous era during the gold rush. Many of these historical buildings and environments are preserved. These preserved properties are a major resource for the town. The town’s shop and restaurant keeper work together with historians to create an interest in the particularities of heritage, and at the same time to lead visitors to their businesses. Residents and tourists can stroll into history by taking…

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Fish! – managerial innovations

Fish! – managerial innovations

The Seattle Pike Place fish market attracts thousands of locals and tourists, not only because of the quality of the produce, but also because of the staff who enjoy their job and are happy to serve their customers. Most of the staff has developed an ability to throw the produce across the premises accompanied by high loud squeals. The atmosphere in the place is full of joy and gags. It is about weeding out stress, boredom, toxic energy and burnout….

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Molecular meals – a strictly scientific restaurant

Molecular meals – a strictly scientific restaurant

Moto restaurant in Chicago is challenging the normal view of cooking as a solely artistic endeavor. In the molecular restaurant everything is based on science, and that has resulted in innovative and thought provoking menus. Homaro Cantu is an internationally recognized leader in the world of molecular gastronomy. Molecular gastronomy is the application of both scientific and artistic principles to cuisine. According to moto, the “molecular tasting room” makes dining like taking part in an ongoing multi-sensory science experiment. “The…

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Mobile saunas in Finland

Mobile saunas in Finland

The Finnish sauna tradition includes a strong social element. In addition, that sauna belongs to everyday life in Finland it is used as a part of social events e.g. among groups of friends or in business meetings. Social events build around sauna are called “sauna evenings”. These include going to the sauna, relaxing, eating and drinking. This social aspect of a sauna can be utilized at places where a sauna is not usually found by the use of mobile saunas….

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Storm and tornado tours

Storm and tornado tours

Tourists interests are wide-ranging with some wanting to experience phenomena which others would like to avoid. Storm Chasing Adventure tours has offered storm chasing tours in North America since 1997.  The firm aims consistently to be the first on the scene as storms form and they offer the customer an opportunity to be closer to tornadoes and severe storms, but still keep safe. Storm Chasing Adventure Tours employs technology to be able to locate storms. The firm was the first…

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Finding travel companions

Finding travel companions

Globetrooper is a website for adventurous travelers who want to create trips themselves and invite people from all over the world to join them. On the website the users can browse through a list of trip offers, when the creators are looking for companions to go to places as Chernobyl, or the Gobi Desert, or a gang to take a roundtrip on Indian Railways. Some tours are visits to film locations, others are challenging trekking or mountain climbing. Some trips…

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Viral marketing, the Korean way

Viral marketing, the Korean way

Igawa Haruka is a well known Japanese actress. In order to attract tourists’ attention to Korea as a tourist attraction, the Seoul based marketing company “designfever” invented a viral marketing campaign, which created an attention and rumor about Haruka in Japan.  The idea was to tell a (fake) story about Haruka falling in love with a Korean actor. The campaign was launched in 2008 by  the national Korean tourist board. The campaign was organized, with first, an imitated news TV…

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Utilizing farm buildings for tourism

Utilizing farm buildings for tourism

Over the past few decades, most European countries have experienced a rapid depopulation of rural areas, particularly such areas that are remotely located. This is mainly due to the difficulty in finding employment outside of agriculture. Not surprisingly, tourism appears to be a suitable economic activity that can be developed and enhanced in these areas. Many projects aim at attracting investments that can catapult a development process. However, external financing is generally hard to activate for small places. UNDP has…

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Soundscapes Africa

Soundscapes Africa

Sound is an important part of any experience. Therefore sound design has become an ingredient in the development of tourism experiences, taking into account and used by many museums and attractions. Restaurants and hotels also work with soundscapes,  hereby attempting to compliment other design features their desired image. The full extent of the use of sound has not yet been reached. The project Listen to Africa provides some indication of the future of the sounds for marketing and the promotion…

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Baby coral sponsorships on Bali

Baby coral sponsorships on Bali

Sponsor a baby coral. That is a tempting opportunity offered on the coast for Bale in Pemuteran. It is expensive to work with re-erection of the reefs, therefore sponsorship is necessary to create funds for the project, and at the same time motivate the tourists to be responsible when they visit areas with vulnerable corals. When sponsoring, the tourists will get his name bent in metal.  The metal is sunk into the sea, and future corals can grow on it….

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Beach exploring and contributing to environmental protection

Beach exploring and contributing to environmental protection

The Island of Sylt on the German west coast is a popular holiday destination, mostly for a domestic market. The island has long sandy beaches and access to the rough North Sea with all its charms. The area is rich in flora and fauna and remains from the sea wash onto the shore. This gives interesting objects of study for those who take a walk along the coast The iPhone application Beachexplorer was created to assist tourists who want to…

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Total Ski School – innovation for people with disability

Total Ski School – innovation for people with disability

The non-profit organization Totalskidskolan ( The Total Ski School)  is in itself not new, but it is quite unique and has developed in more recent time since moving its base to Åre. Totalskidskolan is a ski school that welcomes all skiers with a permanent disability – visual, physical, mental or learning. The target groups should not be denied the joy skiing. The working goal is that skiing is for everyone. Anyone who has the interest will be provided with the opportunity to…

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IPhone applications – the new guidebooks

IPhone applications – the new guidebooks

Smartphone applications are rapidly entering the tourism market with a range of services that might either replace or supplement the traditional guidebooks and services from tourist offices. The Swedish Youth Hostel initiative is one of many that explore and exploit this new technology. The application is cheap for the users, only 15 SKR. For this amount it is possible, any time, to see the location of the nearest youth hostel. Presentations of the hostels are available, and contact is, of…

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Tropical Tree Climbing takes adventure tourism to new heights

Tropical Tree Climbing takes adventure tourism to new heights

Tropical Tree Climbing, located in the Amazon jungle in Brazil, offer expeditions that take adventurers 50 miles down the mighty Negro River, up to 200 feet into the canopy of the rainforest, and exploring along the forest floor. This expeditions are offered selectively each year to allow participants to explore the jungle from a perspective that very few have experienced – perched above the world’s largest forest. Tropical Tree Climbing’s mission is to provide visitors with a truly exciting and…

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Amazon tree climbing – addressing the sustainability issue

Amazon tree climbing – addressing the sustainability issue

The trees are a main attraction in the rainforests, and viewing them from below is no longer enough for adventurous tourists. In the South American rain forest, entrepreneurial innovativeness has led to the creation of a number of travel sites and companies specialized in tropical tree climbing. Amazon Tree Climbing was founded in 2006. This company has developed techniques from rock climbing further and applied them to tree climbing. It is based in Manaus and operates on the Negro and…

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The Silk Road – tourists beat the road to hidden treasures

The Silk Road – tourists beat the road to hidden treasures

The Silk Road is a network of roads which used to contain vital trade and cultural exchange links between the East and the West, from Istanbul to Beijing. The Silk Road was a place for cultures, crafts, ideas, technologies and beliefs. Over the centuries the road was used by both traders, missionaries and officials. A rich cultural heritage is visible to the tourists. Supported by the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) a large number of countries along the route have started a…

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Developing Sauna From Finland concept: Networking and co-operation between different industries

Developing Sauna From Finland concept: Networking and co-operation between different industries

The Sauna from Finland concept aims to create new types of business activity in Finland, and profile Central Finland as the Sauna Province. The Sauna from Finland started as a network but the co-operation strengthened between the different actors to a level which led setting up an association around the concept. The goal of the association is to promote Finnish sauna culture, support the development of services connected to sauna and support and carry out new entrepreneurships. The concept aims…

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Endogenious spices and tourism development

Endogenious spices and tourism development

Assisted by the Indian Ministry of Tourism and UNDP, the Endogenous Spices Tourism Project in Kurangani is aimed at strengthening the indigenous collective identities of mountain communities and at recognizing the link between the principles of sustainable development and indigenous knowledge. A prime purpose is to it focus on developing various strategies specific to the ecosystem in the region, and to protect forest biodiversity. The area of Western Ghats is known for growing spices and other plants of importance for Indian…

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Women in charge of tourism development

Women in charge of tourism development

COBATI (Community Based Tourism Initiative) is a non-profit tourism NGO, which supports local people in Uganda to participate and benefit from tourism and its related initiatives. It was started in 1998 by a community entrepreneur, Maria Baryamujura, who subsequently has been awarded for her innovativeness in terms of making idle resources in villages useful in a tourism context. Social innovation is a main ingredient in the African initiatives. Collaboration, particularly with the local women is essential, and COBATI has set…

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An alternative food system

An alternative food system

The Blue Hills restaurant and the Stone Barn farmers market represent an attempt to create a more sustainable food system with shorter supply chains. The proprietors regard themselves as educators rather than solely food producers and chefs. The successful New York enterprise is a protest to the industrialized food production systems and the standardised restaurant concepts. It appeals to the trend conscious citizens, who increasingly are interpreting their position in the nature-city contrasts. But the restaurant is also an opportunity to…

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Soundscaping in Zion National Park

Soundscaping in Zion National Park

Acoustics are increasingly entering the sphere of experience design. Not only in shopping malls or restaurants, but also in open air facilities such as national parks. Zion National Park, Utah, has since 2008 recorded sounds as part of a monitoring program. From natural sounds such as the cicadas’ symphonies and tickling streams to man-made sounds such as helicopters. The monitoring was undertaken in order to help park staff to minimize sounds that disturb the visitor experience. The monitoring takes place…

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High Lane New York

High Lane New York

In June 2009 a new park opened in Manhattan, New York. It is a continuous stretch of  park established on a former high level railway. The park immediately became an attraction for locals and tourists. The total project comprises of 2.3 kilometres of recreative corridor. The views  from the Lane are often astonishing. The densely built and populated area is in need of new green areas, and the high level of the lane provides a new and very attractive environment….

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Performing with ABBA

Performing with ABBA

For quite a long time, two Swedish entrepreneurs have planned to launch an ABBA museum in Stockholm. In 2010, an innovative museum concept has been introduced. The museum does not have a fixed location, but is built to travel the world. Decoupling from the destination is a issue of innovativeness. The museum has been in the UK and in Melbourne, suitable places to meet many fans. Abba the Museum also makes use of the latest interactive technology, which will allow visitors of all…

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Innovative tourism ingredients in city planning

Innovative tourism ingredients in city planning

Ibsensitat – “quotes by Ibsen” is high culture on a street level. It is a piece of art created by two artists, and supported financially by a banking foundation. Henrik Ibsen was probably the most famous Norwegian author and playwright. The project is about spreading the knowledge about his work. Quotes from Ibsen’s work are molded into the pavements in the main streets of Oslo. On the projects website of the project everyone is invited to make suggestions to the…

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The communal table

The communal table

Sometimes innovation is very simple, and yet sophisticated in its implication. Le Pain Quotidien is a Belgium based bakery and coffee shop. It was started by Alain Coumont. He learned about bread when he as a child watched his grandmother bake bread. He is educated as a chef, and when he could not find good bread for his restaurant he decided to start his own bakery. He wanted to bake hearty and wholesome bread with a firm slice and a…

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Disney World’s managerial innovations

Disney World’s managerial innovations

The Disney Themeparks enjoy worldwide recognition for their human resource management innovations. Many other tourism enterprises, big and small attempted to learn from Disney. A primary philosophy of Disney’s HRM consists of connecting the employee experience closely together with the customer experience. Excellent services are provided only by employees who are satisfied and motivated. Accordingly, the hiring of employees is called “casting” – like finding actors for important roles in a show. The metaphor from the film world fits well…

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Creative waste water treatment – essential for tourism development

Creative waste water treatment – essential for tourism development

Tourism development is not only about the most visible services and products. In the Nemunas Delta in Lithuania, the local actors realized that the treatment of waste water was insufficient and seriously threatened the flora and fauna in the area. The Delta is a popular recreational area, and there are potentials to develop the boating and angling. Minge is a picturesque fishing village, but tourism development was not an issue. In 2001 there was no waste water treatment at all….

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Finding a third world paradise and making relations with its people

Finding a third world paradise and making relations with its people

Pro-poor tourism is continuously developing its forms. “Tribewanted” is a membership based organization that collaborates with villagers in very remote areas to enhance sustainable tourism and other small scale economic activities. The mission is “to build and sustain cross-cultural communities in beautiful places that benefit locals and visiting members; inspiring positive change within and far beyond the village.” The so-called tribe members spend a minimum of 1 week at a time living alongside a local team and community immersed in…

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Marketing innovations on social media

Marketing innovations on social media

Businesses both big and small are flocking to social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and Foursquare. A presence on these media not only allows companies to engage in conversations with consumers, but also serves as an outlet to drive sales through deals and coupons. Analyses by Center for Excellence in Service at the University of Maryland indicate that social media adoption by North American SMEs have doubled from 12% to 24% from 2009 to 2010. Joie De Vivre…

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Transparent factory

Transparent factory

Gazing on other people doing their job and work is a popular tourism passtime. Building and constructions workers often find themselves in the  middle of a show, where both children and adults following the fascinating growth of built structures. Some builder make “windows” which allow (and regulate) the gazing. The Dresden Volkswagen plant has gone one step further. Its so-called “Transparent Factory” opened in 2002. The building is made of glass. It is however, also transparent in its production philosophy….

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Dance to save the earth

Dance to save the earth

Heard about “eco-clubbing”? Now, bars and discotheques are getting more climate sensitive. Surya Bar at Kings Cross, London, has implemented a dance floor that produces electricity when compressed by dancers. The current is loaded in batteries that help offset some of the electricity bill and thereby carbon footprint. Other initiatives include, according to the website of the club: Exclusive use of only poly-carbon cups, the most environmentally friendly available drinking apparatus. Recycling of all glass, metal, plastic and paper products…

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The second-hand book town

The second-hand book town

Hay-on-Wye is a fascinating story about entrepreneurhip and innovation in a small and remotely located village without any touristic features at all. In 1961 the unemployed Richard Booth started selling second-hand books by the kilo from the old fire station. This concept caught on, and other bookshop entrepreneurs learned from the experience. At first with some agonies, but competing booksellers have since been working together in so called “co-opetition”. The agglomeration of a larger number – 30 bookshops –  has been…

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Therapeutic hotel rooms

Therapeutic hotel rooms

Luxury hotel Gotha Towers in Gothenburg, Sweden, has developed a new type of hotel room. This so-called Relaxation room is a place of  well-being which blends sound, lighting and purified air. The customer is able to select exactly which atmosphere is in the room by way of a few taps on a touch screen. The Hotel addresses the needs of modern business people for whom the room is a home away from home. It integrates ideas from spa and wellness to be enjoyed…

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Extended marketing – Icehotel

Extended marketing – Icehotel

The Icehotel in Jukkasjärvi, Sweden, became immensely recognized and popular immediately after its inauguration. It was a conceptual change of a hotel – the whole idea of cold climate as an attraction rather than a disadvantage turned the image of the north upside down. Over the years the Icehotel has been further developed, and new courageous ice designs occur every year, when the hotel opens for a new season. It has become prestigious to be an ice designer and architect. Icehotels…

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Airport spa – relaxing from travel stress

Airport spa – relaxing from travel stress

 Helsinki is becoming a major European hub for travels to Asia and Australia. The Airport hosts more than a million transit passengers per year. Finnair is ready to make life more comfortable for transit passengers, thus raising the reputation for the quality of service. The Via Spa is a new facility. The Via Spa environment is unique in the world of airports and Finnair means to communicate that the airline really cares for the wellbeing of its customers. Is it free…

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Drive together

Drive together

Nowadays new organizations are arising that match people with extra seats in their car with people who need a lift.  It is especially young people who find it useful to share the costs of travelling and perhaps cultivate new friendships during the trip. One of the most successful is “Mitfahrtgelegenheit” in Germany with more than 1.3 million trips organized every year. With affiliates around Europe it is possible to organize cost and carbon saving trips across borders. This and other organizations host…

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Zero star hotel

Zero star hotel

The no-frills zero star hotel in Sevelen outside Zürich, Switzerland, attracted quite some attention for creative thinking. Turning disadvantages to advantages is crucial. Consider the following: The place is located in a converted nuclear bunker, under the earth, no windows, no real views. A range of monitors in the reception area shows webcam pictures from outside the place. Beds are second-hand (“antique”) from a derelict hotel. Complimentary slippers are provided for walking across the icy concrete floors Guest will be…

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SaunaLab – artistic and scientific development of the Finnish sauna concept

SaunaLab – artistic and scientific development of the Finnish sauna concept

The Finns often define themselves through sauna: Do you have a sauna? That’s a steam room, not a sauna! How’s the heat? Is the sauna made in Finland? What is the brand and quality of the stove? Saunas are part of their identify, and sauna life is also a matter of great curiosity for visitors. Sauna is the Finnish national symbol. The symbol of cleanliness and a haven for harmony and relaxation. It is a place for social relations, and…

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A break in a Soviet prison

A break in a Soviet prison

The management of the Patarei Prison Museum in Tallin, Estonia has resisted the temptation to clean the place and make it tidy. Patarei was established in the 19th century and it has been in use until 2002. It was used as a tool of Soviet oppression for years. The museum concept is extremely confronting. While a visit to the prison can be disturbing, especially to people with hidden guilt complexes, it is claimed also to be therapeutic, serving as a powerful…

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Extreme polar tours – Svalbard

Extreme polar tours – Svalbard

Over the past year, entrepreneur Brita Knutsen Dahl has developed her polar tourism company with considerable success. The location is normally and by most people not considered among the most welcoming and accessible – Svalbard in the North Atlantic. Basecamp Spitsbergen contains adventurous accommodation. The camp is built in a traditional fashion with materials like driftwood, planks from the Russian settlement in Barentsburg, slate, corrugated iron, and sealskins. Visitors get the feeling of wandering into a trapper’s cabin rather than…

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Tradition – a key to innovation

Tradition – a key to innovation

The government of India has made rural tourism a priority in a way that can and should be a source of inspiration for governments everywhere, large and small. The Endogenous Tourism Project at Hodka was initiated in 2004. The village is famous for its embroidery and leather craft, while the surrounding region is known for a variety of crafts such as wood work, lacquer work, copper bells, rogaan work on clothes, block printing and weaving. Hodka village is situated in…

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Sweden’s new treetop designer hotel

Sweden’s new treetop designer hotel

Sweden was first with the icehotel, and now a hotel with treetop accommodation is being established. Six architects have been asked to design their visions of treetop room, and they are about to be built in Harads in Northern Sweden. The treetop hotel is close to the Icehotel in Jukkasjärvi, and the two places will be marketed together, both examples of extreme experiences. Sleeping in a treetop is something very special, feeling the effects of nature on the body in…

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Making events out of unobtainable luxury – the Alba Truffle Auction

Making events out of unobtainable luxury – the Alba Truffle Auction

October is the height of the white truffle season in Alba, Italy, with the highest prices and the fiercest competition among both hunters and buyers. The town is Italy’s truffle capital and main market as well as home to the Associazione Nazionale ‘Città del Tartufo’, representing nearly 20 truffle-producing towns in central Italy. Crowds of thousands converge on the town to sample local food and wine – including roast pork, salami, polenta, almond and chocolate cake, apricot cake, Gianduja chocolate,…

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Process innovation in the airline industry – the importance of reducing turnaround time

Process innovation in the airline industry – the importance of reducing turnaround time

In order to cut costs and increase performance airlines work constantly on reducing turnaround time, the time from when an aircraft parks at the gate till it can pull out again with a new load of passengers. These many smaller and larger adaptations can be seen as  important process innovations, and they are crucial for competitiveness. There are a number of key tasks to be carried out: unloading and loading of passengers and luggage, safety and security checks, catering, cleaning and a variety…

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Space tourism is moving closer

Space tourism is moving closer

Ever since the Sputnik and the men on the Moon, people have dreamt of becoming cosmonauts and astronauts. Trips in space are extremely expensive, and this type of tourism is accessible only for the very few. However, more affordable suborbital space tourism is viewed as commercial proposition by several companies, for example “Space Adventures”. Vienna based Space Adventures is a company that has developed a number of programs designed to immerse customers in the adventure of space travel, without leaving the Earth’s…

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Airport Library Schiphol

Airport Library Schiphol

For most people, waiting in airports is probably not their favorite pastime. Schiphol Airport Amsterdam is known for its efforts to make waiting more enjoyable and to ease the discomforts connected to delays. There are already plenty of ways to kill time, including an innovative mini-Rijksmuseum. Recently, the airport has added yet another option for literary travelers – a library. It is not a lending library – for that, time is, after all, usually too short. The library is a…

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Swapping services – now also for luxury accommodation

Swapping services – now also for luxury accommodation

Couch surfing is well-known among young people, who want to experience the world on a small budget. Social media helps with the practicalities and it is easier than ever to locate friends of friends throughout the world on for example Facebook. Home swaps and summer house swaps is also well-known, and the time has come for those you own luxury houses and apartments. The website “Luxe Home Swap – for people with homes they’re proud of” – offer opportunities for a…

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A development cluster for mountain biking in Scotland

A development cluster for mountain biking in Scotland

Research demonstrates that innovation is enhanced in clusters of industries, NGOs, public authorities etc. The idea of a creating a cluster, rather than awaiting its emergence, has caught on in Scotland. Key national agencies worked together to plan how best to sustain and grow mountain biking in Scotland in a way which provides optimum and quantifiable returns in terms of participation in mountain biking, economic and tourism development and also in terms of public participation and sporting development and success….

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Wallander walks in Ystad – staging a crime scene

Wallander walks in Ystad – staging a crime scene

Ystad is a small town, situated in southern Sweden. It is the scene of Henning Mankell’s very popular detective novels with character Inspector Wallander, a cerebral, workaholic, hard-drinking loner. BBC drama series have used the town as a location with Kenneth Branagh in the starring role. Picturesque Ystad is becoming a “Crime scene”, a fact that the local tourist board is attempting to use to attract curious tourists. The “Wallander Studio” is now a tourism attraction. It includes the appartment of…

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Travelling back to life

Travelling back to life

The German “Trauerakademie” – Grief Academy – has initiated a new type of collaboration with the tour operator TUI. The purpose is to provide specially organized charter tours for persons who have lost a dear family member or friend. TUI has a long experience in travel organization, and Trauerakademie holds an expertise in assisting people in mourning. The Trauerakademie undertakes an interview with the potential travelers in order to ensure that the participants are beyond the first paralyzing shock, and…

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Job advertisement as viral destination marketing

Job advertisement as viral destination marketing

Queensland, Australia advertized for the right person to fill the “Best job in the world”. Island caretaker: Well paid, meaningful, easy, and located in a beautiful tropical environment. “The best job in world” immediately became a viral success, seen, captured and shared by millions of people around the world. 1.4 million people applied for the job. Destinations find that their revenues are under pressure and consumers are carefully looking for value for money. Thus, local agencies that promote tourism must…

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“Cold Hawaii” promotes tourism in Klitmøller

“Cold Hawaii” promotes tourism in Klitmøller

At first sight Klitmøller appears to be a drowsy town in a peripheral region. But due to the strong wind and great waves Klitmøller has become a popular tourist destination especially among surfers. The harsh weather provides great conditions for wind- and kitesurfing, and the destination is known as Cold Hawaii. Cold Hawaii is internationally recognized as one of the five best wind- and kitesurfing destinations in Europe due to the many great surf spots within short distance. Klitmøller have…

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Crowne Plaza – Copenhagen Towers leads the way in green solutions.

Crowne Plaza – Copenhagen Towers leads the way in green solutions.

Crowne Plaza – Copenhagen Towers seeks to utilize sustainable solutions without compromising on comfort and standards. The hotel is the first in Denmark to meet the standards of the EUs Green Building Program and the Danish building regulations for low-energy class 2 and is the first to join the UN’s Global Compacts project where companies engage in social and environmental initiatives. Furthermore, the running of the hotel is certified under the international “Green Key”, which guarantees environmentally friendly initiatives within…

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Turning complaints into marketing advantages – Sticks’n’Sushi

Turning complaints into marketing advantages – Sticks’n’Sushi

Sticks’n’Sushi was one of the first restaurants in Copenhagen that specialized in sushi and yakitori-sticks. The chain opened in 1994 and was founded by Jens Rahbek Hansen, Thor Andersen and Kim Rahbek Hansen. Today the chain consists of nine restaurants in Copenhagen and has more than 400 employees. Expansion plans include London. At Sticks’n’Sushi they do not use the word “service design” – they call it service architecture). Sticks’n’Sushi is a company with a very dedicated attitude to the nature…

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Never-ending taste experiences attract and retain customers at Hr. Skov gourmet shop

Never-ending taste experiences attract and retain customers at Hr. Skov gourmet shop

Hr. Skov is a gourmet universe with delicious ingredients, exciting products and a knowledge and passion for good food from good ingredients which dates back to family roots. Strategic portfolio development based on customer behaviour and their own specific experience from previous business activities are the driving forces behind the concept. Hr. Skov Gourmet Shop is located in Blåvand on west coast of Jutland, close to the sea, beaches and breathtaking scenery. The shop is owned and operated by Claus…

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iPads in Sydney restaurant Global Mundo Tapas

iPads in Sydney restaurant Global Mundo Tapas

Technology is moving fast into the restaurat sector. Gadget that customers fancy can augment the profile of the restaurant. The hype around the iPad is creatively used by Sydney restaurant Global Mundo Tapas. Global Mondo Tapas has become the first in Australia to replace their printed menus with Apple’s  iPad.  It allows customers to browse the menu and see pictures of the dishes. Tasting notes are also available. The quest will send their orders automatically to the ktichen. The iPad menu…

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Using Google docs for event planning

Using Google docs for event planning

As many event organizers know planning an event is an event in itself.  One such event took place In Iceland between 18th and 20th of June at the small coastal town of Akranes where 1400 hundred kids age 7-12 played football in the local Century Aluminum football tournament. Having 1400 kids running around for a weekend demands a large support staff for things to run smoothly not to mention all the parents following and watching over their kids, all in…

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Hvidbjerg Strand Holiday Park – Design and Architecture

Hvidbjerg Strand Holiday Park – Design and Architecture

Architecture makes a different. The market for wellness has been on the rise throughout the years. It has been immensely popular to relax in the sauna or the body heat pool with mineral-bearing water. The services keep developing with e.g. different kinds of massages or therapies. It is effortless to spend an afternoon in a laid-back position or to spend an evening with friends in a new way. But wellness is also an area, where you can expect constantly increasing…

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Social media as travel organising devices

Social media as travel organising devices

Social media is about creating relations around the world. Tourboarding.com offers a new travel model for exploring and experiencing China at very low to no cost. It is different from other couch surfing websites. Accommodation is offered if the tourist accepts to spend time teaching English to the host family. The organisation recognised that Chinese are very eager to learn languages, and swopping services is a new way of volunteering. Thus, VIP members of Tourboarding.com can receive free room and board all over…

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Comfortable sleeping on long haul flights

Comfortable sleeping on long haul flights

Long haul flight are very tiring for passengers, particularly those flying economy class. New Zealand Airlines will offer a solution to the problem by selling unsold seats to passengers. The airline has taken one step further by creating a technical device turning these empty seats into a lie-flat bed by sliding the seats forward and raising the foot rest.  Thus, two people will share a row of three seats. The new seat design is the brainchild of Altitude Aerospace Interiors, an Air New Zealand subsidiary. Empty seats will…

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Using new technology behind scenes – “Sensing” accommodation

Using new technology behind scenes – “Sensing” accommodation

Villas of Vuokatin Aateli (http://www.vuokatinaateli.fi/english/) are situated in Vuokatti tourism destination in eastern Finland. Vuokatin Aateli is concentrating on offering high quality accommodation in villas and apartments. The business has altogether over 20 villas which size alters from 21 to 200 square metres. All the villas and apartments are named by using royal titles (e.g. Duchess and Earl). There are stories behind each name and the stories are some way connected to Finnish or regional history. The Vuokatin Aateli owns…

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Small things count for the disabled

Small things count for the disabled

Visually impaired hotel guest? This might be a challenge. Scandic Hotels are addressing it. Small things make life easier for the disabled. For example the key card which has a hole in it to indicate which side is up. The hole is placed  where you naturally put your thumb and index finger. Scandic Hotels has adopted a comprehensive ethical code of conduct, and the and the implementation of the key card is one small, but important issue. The ethics has conduct…

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Karma rating of hotels

Karma rating of hotels

California-based tour company Journeys Within has a new and unique “Hotel Karma Ratings” system that measures properties based on their efforts toward a better planet. The initaitive is a new way to give tourists a voice in environmental and climate policies and to promote a higher strategic emphasis on the environment in hotels and Bed and Breakfasts. There are four categories of hotels: Nirvana: These are the hotels that have found a project or projects, to support and then do…

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Danhostel Ribe – An eco-friendly hostel in Ribe, Denmark

Danhostel Ribe – An eco-friendly hostel in Ribe, Denmark

Danhostel Ribe is uniquely located in Denmark’s oldest town with access to the Wadden Sea National Park and a beautiful view of Ribe Cathedral, the city and the stream through Ribe. The current manager, Jens Philipsen and his wife, Gudrun Rishede took over the hostel in 1986. As former schoolteachers they possess certain core values that they want to implement in the management of the hostel. Personally and as managers of the hostel they hold a sustainable and eco-friendly mentality,…

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Self service spa pampering

Self service spa pampering

The Anttolanhovi Wellness Village is situated on the shore of Lake Saimaa in Finland. Anttolanhovi aims to bring Finnish know-how, such as art, design furniture, and locally produced food to the spa experience.  As a response to both the demands of the customers and the need to ensure financial sustainability, the enterprise attempts to develop high class and quality to a a self-service concept. A distinct concept is the ‘wellness bar’ (following the idea of minibar), which can be found…

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Mandø Soaps – working with local ingredients of the Wadden Sea

Mandø Soaps – working with local ingredients of the Wadden Sea

Many local destinations seek to innovate the tourism product by creating alliances between core tourism providers and producers of “signature” products. Signature products tell a story about the destination and help to create memorable experiences for the tourists. Signature products are for example food and drink items used in restaurants. Most signature products can be taken back as souvenirs and gifts. The Danish Wadden Sea area is popular among German tourist who enjoy the human scale and the proximity to…

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Exploiting geothermal waters for wellness tourism

Exploiting geothermal waters for wellness tourism

Mývatn Nature Baths The Mývatn Nature Baths (see: www.jardbodin.is) offer a concrete manifestation of the expectations tourism entrepreneurs round Iceland hold towards the abundant geo-thermal water in the country. Lake Mývatn has long been one of the best known destinations in N. Iceland, although in recent years the nearby town of Húsavík has started to rival it with its fame as a whale watching spot. The attractions of the lake and its surroundings are in the form of numerous geological…

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Ribe Byferie – role model for quality tourism

Ribe Byferie – role model for quality tourism

Ribe Byferie holiday centre designated as a role model for quality tourism Well-thought-out architecture, a location close to the city and deep respect for the historic and architectural individuality of Ribe. These factors were behind the designation of Ribe Byferie holiday centre as a role model for how to cater for heritage and tourism together. For many years now, Ribe Byferie holiday centre has organised very successful themed holidays to enable visitors to explore history, culture or nature in the…

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Klægager Bed&Breakfast – Reaping the benefits of a rich history

Klægager Bed&Breakfast – Reaping the benefits of a rich history

Klægager – Den Gamle Digegreves Gård (The Old Dyke Count’s Farm) is a Bed&Breakfast worth experiencing. It is located just a few hundred metres from the impressive Wadden Sea. The farm is owned and managed by the Lorezen family – the sixth generation on the farm. The farm was built in 1857 and was one of the first farms built around a square in the marshland. The farm was a wedding gift from father to daughter. Until 1976 the farm…

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Sustainability stars. Celebrating innovations at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic winter games

Sustainability stars. Celebrating innovations at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic winter games

In order to promote sustainable innovations in relation to the 2010 Winter Olympics held in Vancouver, the organisers decided to create a ‘Star program’ recognising and rewarding its contributors with a star. In order to gain such a star, contributors must meet the following criteria: demonstrate two or more sustainability features (a notable social, economic and/or environmental benefit) be directly linked to the 2010 Winter Games produce a measurable outcome meet one or more of the following: new to the…

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Hjerting Beach Hotel – Looking Backwards in Order to Progress

Hjerting Beach Hotel – Looking Backwards in Order to Progress

At the West coast of Jutland facing the North Sea a beautiful and cozy hotel adorn the scenery; Hjerting Beach Hotel (Hjerting Badehotel). The beach hotel is situated in beautiful surroundings, close to both water and nature experiences. The buildings have served as a beach hotel since 1914. In 1969 the hotel was renovated and renamed Hotel Hjerting with emphasis on festivity; dining and dancing and little attention was paid to overnight stays and tourism. In the early 1980’ies the…

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Ordering coffee at Starbucks

Ordering coffee at Starbucks

In average, Starbucks opens six new coffee outlets every day, and there are more than 10.000 shops in 39 countries. Part of the Starbucks concept includes that users have the option to choose from a wide range of beverages, which includes coffee, available in various sizes, flavours, preparation forms, etc. Accordingly, customers can order Moccachino, Iced Venti no-water Americano and Double Tall nonfat extra hot Cappuccino – and many other specific coffees. Service innovations have been prevalent to ensure that…

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Service design in Copenhagen airport: improving security and staff working conditions

Service design in Copenhagen airport: improving security and staff working conditions

In 2006, Copenhagen Airport, along with all other airports around the world, was facing new and tighter rules for passenger security. For example any laptop computer had to be taken out of the bag and screened separately. The same applied to coats and jackets. Fluids could only be carried in the hand luggage, if the containers were placed in a transparent bag visible to the security staff.  The Civil Aviation Administration put a pressure on the airport operations. A consequence was a need…

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Innovative tourism communication? Viral marketing and Karen from Denmark

Innovative tourism communication? Viral marketing and Karen from Denmark

On Thursday September 10th a video was posted on www.youtube.com. In the video, a pretty blonde woman named Karen is searching for the father to her baby August sitting on her arm. In the 2 minute long video Karen recalls an evening in Copenhagen where she met Augusts father and decided to show him what the concept of hygge (similar to cozy) is all about. Nine months later August was born, but Karen has no recollection of the father’s name…

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The Spirit to Serve – The Case of Marriott Hotels

The Spirit to Serve – The Case of Marriott Hotels

The Marriott International works together with non-profit organizations such as Red Cross and Children’s Miracle Network. They want to give something back to the communities where they do business. Part of Marriott’s philosophy is also to encourage employees, visitors and business partners to involve themselves in making a differences for the local communities. To raise money, they have chosen to involve all parties in the planning of different events that benefit all kinds of non-profit organizations in the local communities….

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We try harder – We drive greener

We try harder – We drive greener

Avis Europe is one of the leading car rental companies in Europe, Asia and the Middle East. In 2002, Avis Europe launched a programme in order to reduce its carbon dioxide release. As one of the first industries, the company established a partnership with Future Forests, which plants trees for the company to help prevent climate change. The partnership include a three-point green plan which consists of: a carbon neutral initiative to offset their Co2 emmisions through Future Forests´ tree planting…

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Scandinavian Airlines – Flying Green

Scandinavian Airlines – Flying Green

Scandinavian Airlines are a company with a strong sense of corporate responsibility as the following quotations from their website show. (retrieved on 17.11.09 from www.sasgroup.net) “The SAS Group’s social and societal responsibilities include employees and the Group’s impact on the surroundings and communities where it operates” “SAS is a member of UN Global Compact, in short their philosophy is to defend and promote human rights and to combate corruption discrimmination and all forms of forced labor ” (www.sasgroup.net, 17.11.09) For…

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Redevelopment of obsolete infrastructure – a tropical aquapark in a former gigantic hangar

Redevelopment of obsolete infrastructure – a tropical aquapark in a former gigantic hangar

Originally the gigantic hangar was build as a garage for a huge airship that was meant to transport unwieldy articles that otherwise had to be transported on a float of trucks. But the project was never realized. The enormous hangar was built, but the airship was never built and the company behind the project went bankrupt. What are you supposed to do with such an enormous hangar? How is it possible to make use of an enormous hangar in the…

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Spanish travel company utilizes popular bloggers; rewards with free trips

Spanish travel company utilizes popular bloggers; rewards with free trips

YokmoK, a Spanish travel company, has found a way to make use of the free spaces on their trips and get advertisement for their services in return. YokmoK with homebase in Madrid, Spain, specializes in guided adventure travels in small groups with emphasis on originality and quality. As any other travel company they cannot have all of their trips fully booked and therefore they have found a way to fill out the empty spaces by inviting popular bloggers on a…

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At Madeleines you do not just eat a dinner – you participate in a show.

At Madeleines you do not just eat a dinner – you participate in a show.

The name of this restaurant is inspired by Marcel Prousts’ “Remembrance of Things Past” in which a Madeleine-cake brings back memories and awakens experiences. Madeleines is a food theater and a food lab under the same roof and with the same main goal: Serve meals in new and eventful ways. Madeleines Food Theater experiments with food and contexts in order to present food in artistic ways to let food melt together with other artistic expressions. They reinvent the well known…

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CAN SLEEP – oversized beer cans

CAN SLEEP – oversized beer cans

Denmark’s most beautiful Festival (Danmark’s Smukkest Festival) offers its guests a unique concept for sleeping accommodations – oversized beer cans. This concept is one of the more original interpretations of the brand spaces trend. The Can Sleep concept is a joint venture between the festival organizers and Royal Unibrew, the second largest brewery in Denmark.  The Can Sleeps are of course shaped as a Royal Unibrew and is 3,50 m. in height and has a diameter of 2,20 m. The…

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When travel booking begins with when and not where

When travel booking begins with when and not where

A Hungarian travel site, Joobili, ask their customers when they want to go on a holiday instead of where. They believe that timing is everything and think that the question of “where to go” is best answered with “when to go”. Most travel websites assume that people know where they want to go and what they want to experience. In contrast Joobili believes that offering you information on what a destination can offer in certain periods is much more valuable…

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Loews Hotels “Adopt-A-Farmer”

Loews Hotels “Adopt-A-Farmer”

Local food feels good and tastes good. Maybe that is why Loews Hotels have launched a new “green” concept where they buy local products to support and enhance local farming communities. The program is called “Adopt-A-Farmer” and aims to green up hotel menus while supporting local farmers, fishermen and independent purveyors. The new program means menus at Loews Hotels will have an emphasis on seasonal and regional cuisine, based on their adopted farmers’ current crops. Plus, guests can choose from…

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Light therapy in Paris airports

Light therapy in Paris airports

Travelling for a long time and over many time zones is weary for the health. In cooperation with Philips Energy Light, two airports in Paris offered the traveler light therapy as a method to overcome some of the downsides of long-haul transportation. White-light lamps and deep chairs were installed in spectacular igloos. Soft, therapeutical music added to the relaxation. Staff was educated to guide the travelers to the experience of relaxation. Light therapy is a popular issue in wellness tourism. This initiative took…

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A lifestyle hotel in Copenhagen

A lifestyle hotel in Copenhagen

Hotel Fox is Copenhagen’s only lifestyle hotel. Twenty-one international artists in the fields of graphic design, urban art and illustrations have transformed the hotel into one of the world’s most exciting and creative lifestyles hotels. The hotel offers a modern and individual atmosphere, where innovation is combined with first-class service. Some rooms are decorated like magical dream fantasies, while others feature cartoon monsters, unique street art or Japanese manga. Choose a room to match your mood! The aim is to give…

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Whale shark initiative – how tourists can help researchers

Whale shark initiative – how tourists can help researchers

Whale sharks is an endangered species. Conservation is important, and to be able to apply efficient measures, research on the abundance, residency and migration is very crucial. This research is expensive, but tourists are invited to assist the researchers. Whale sharks have unique patterns of spots and scaring. The Ecocean Laboratory developed a method to scan photographs and combine with geo-information for comprehensive analysis. Photograph: Jon Hanson http://www.flickr.com/photos/jonhanson/ / CC BY-SA 2.0 Tourists with an interest in diving and underwater…

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Dining in darkness

Dining in darkness

Dark Waiter is the first dark restaurant in Denmark. The concept is clear: you dine in complete darkness! Mostly to experience how senses compensate each other if you loose one dominant sense. Find out if  the food taste differently, or how to pour wine in your glass or even experience if you are to identify persons talking in the darkness around you. The menu will not be revealed beforehand and will be served by waiters who are blind or partially sighted. Visit the restaurants homepage…

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TraveLodge Container Hotel, London

TraveLodge Container Hotel, London

TraveLodge’s first recyle hotel is completed in the UK. The hotel is made from stacked shipping containers – 120 bedrooms over eight floors. The containers are modified in China with plasterboard walls, electrics and bathrooms and then shipped to the UK. The containers are bolted together and installed at the site where interior and windows are fitted. Such hotels are much cheaper to build than ordinary hotels and they can even be taken apart and rebuilt again at speed, offering…

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Leisure maps in the Vejle area, Denmark

Leisure maps in the Vejle area, Denmark

Keen on riding, walking or bycycling? Tourists might want to go to areas that are not well known, or they might want to compose their own routes which will bring them to natural or cultural attractions of their choice. For many years, the Danish municipalities have used with GIS and maps for  the urban plannning puposes. They tended to keep the maps to themselves. Now, however, the rich resource of computerised maps are made accessible to tourists and local leisure seekers. On www.friluftskortvejle.dk  it is possible to customize a…

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A trademark developed into a tourist attraction

A trademark developed into a tourist attraction

Colman’s have been making fine quality mustards in Norfolk for over 180 years. To represent this long established industry in Norwich and perpetuate their traditions of making and selling only mustard products of the highest quality and value, they opened The Mustard Shop in Norwich during 1973 to commemorative the 150th anniversary of Colman’s. The shop stocks and extensive range of powder and prepared mustards, including a number of specialities made exclusively for the shop. In addition, there a range…

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Lloyds Hotel Amsterdam solved the problems with stars

Lloyds Hotel Amsterdam solved the problems with stars

The Lloyds hotel accommodates rooms from 1-stars simplicity to 5-starts extravagance. Rooms are decorated by different architects and artists, and they all include extraordinary ideas and interesting gimmicks. The hotel also offers rooms which in a flexible way can be transformed from conference rooms to bedrooms and vice versa, depending on the needs. By these measures, Lloyds is in its own creative way questioning the whole concept of fixed rigid standards in the hotel sector. The hotel defines itself as…

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