Multicultural Travel News

Multicultural Travel News newsletter (MTN) covers travel news of interest to ethnic and niche travelers and those who market to them. We write about destinations that interest multicultural travelers or have outreach campaigns to travelers of Hispanic, African American, Asian American and other cultural backgrounds; women; LGBT travelers and people with disabilities.
Multicultural Travel News is also written for leisure and business travelers looking for what to see and do and for marketing executives interested in ideas, best practices and the business case for targeting so-called "minority" travelers. We cover cities and countries, hotels, airlines, cruise lines, convention and visitor bureaus, tour operators and other travel marketers with a multicultural angle. Multicultural Travel news is written and edited by Lisa Skriloff.

Ring in the Year of the Monkey in Style with Top New York Chinese Restaurants

Upper East Side favorite China Fun will have a special Chinese New Year themed menu running from Wednesday, February 6, 2016 through Sunday, February 21, 2016 in addition to its regular menu filled with unique takes on traditional classics. Specialty dishes on the menu for the occasion include Crispy New Zealand Lamb Chops sautéed with chili peppers and spices; Mango Steak and Braised Pork Belly served with Shanghai baby bok choy in casserole. Since launching in 1991 by the Wu family, guests can trust in the restaurant’s ability to ensure each meal is great each and every time they dine at China Fun. The unique menu executed by Executive Chef Wing Fong Chen, who has been with the restaurant since its opening, is highlighted by dim sum, soup dumplings, Cantonese BBQ, noodles, wok dishes among other options. 1221 2nd Avenue (@ 64th St.) New York, NY 10065, 212-752-0810, www.chinafun-ny.com  Read more >>

Irish-American Heritage Month (March) and St. Patrick’s Day (March 17): 2016

Congress proclaimed March as Irish-American Heritage Month in 1991, and the President issues a proclamation commemorating the occasion each year. Originally a religious holiday to honor St. Patrick, who introduced Christianity to Ireland in the fifth century, St. Patrick’s Day has evolved into a celebration of all things Irish. The world’s first St. Patrick’s Day parade occurred on March 17, 1762, in New York City, featuring Irish soldiers serving in the English military. This parade became an annual event, with President Truman attending in 1948. 33.1 million, or 10.4% was the number and percentage of U.S. residents who claimed Irish ancestry in 2014. New Hampshire, at 20.9 percent, is the only other state in which more than 20 percent claimed Irish ancestry. California had 2.5 million people claiming Irish ancestry, which was the highest of any state. Two other states — New York and Pennsylvania — also had more than 2 million Irish-Americans. 42.3% is the percentage of the population of Braintree, Mass., who were of Irish ancestry. Braintree is just one example of the many communities near Boston that are close to having a majority Irish population. Scituate, Hanover, Marshfield and Norwell are some others. 196,568 is the number of Irish-Americans living in Chicago, the location of one of the nation’s most renowned St. Patrick’s Day traditions: dyeing the Chicago River green. Chicago’s Irish-American population was second among cities only to New York (363,045), home to the world’s oldest and largest St. Patrick’s Day parade. Philadelphia was third at 176,568. For more information about Irish-Americans in the U.S., visit census.gov.

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Children’s Museum of Manhattan Announces Opening of “America to Zanzibar: Muslim Cultures Near and Far

“America to Zanzibar” is the Fourth in a Series of Major Cultural Exhibitions by the Children’s Museum as Part of its Commitment to Help Prepare Children for Today’s Global Society. It's a groundbreaking, new interactive exhibit for children and families that explores the diversity of Muslim cultures in New York City, the U.S. and abroad. The multimedia exhibit and programming at the Children’s Museum (212 West 83rd Street) showcases the cultural expressions of various Muslim communities around the world through age-appropriate experiences with art, architecture, travel, trade, design and more. It will open Feb. 13 and remain open for at least a year. The exhibit, designed for children ages 2-10 and their families, consists of five major sections: a Global Marketplace, Trade Routes area, Courtyard area, Architecture area and an American Home area. The exhibit, designed for children ages 2-10 and their families, consists of five major sections: a Global Marketplace, Trade Routes area, Courtyard area, Architecture area and an American Home area. A wide range of workshops, programs, live performances and festivals will take place throughout the exhibit’s run. Participation is free with admission. For more information, visit www.cmom.org.  Read more >>

Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau Brings Back The Art Of Black Miami

Following a successful launch last year, the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau (GMCVB) brings back Art of Black Miami, a platform that shines a spotlight on local, national and international art and artists representing the African diaspora.  Art of Black Miami takes part during the destination's premier art event, Art Basel Miami Beach. This signature initiative is a celebration of the abundant artistic diversity found within Miami's mosaic and heritage-rich neighborhoods. Residents and visitors will experience new artwork and projects while attending special events, meeting artists, visiting pop-up art galleries and more. A dedicated website – www.ArtOfBlackMiami.com – provides real-time updates and more information on the African diaspora art representing African-American, Caribbean, Latin American and African cultures. "The GMCVB's newly formed Multicultural Tourism Department is proud to bring back Art of Black because it combines two leading pillars in our community:  the diversity of our heritage-rich neighborhoods and our global position as a premier art and culture destination," says GMCVB President & CEO, William D. Talbert, III, CDME. The City of Miami will extend their iconic trolley routes in order to provide free transportation for Art of Black Miami participants around heritage neighborhoods.  Community pockets within Miami and The Beaches are embracing the event with specially programmed exhibits such as "Soul Basel" in historic Overtown and TIZITA (Ti-zee-ta), a fine art group exhibition featuring Ethiopian and African Diaspora art on Miami Beach. More than forty-seven (47) events take place in Miami's heritage neighborhoods (including Little Haiti, Coconut Grove, Liberty City, Opa-Locka, Historic Overtown, Wynwood, MiMo District, Miami Gardens, Coral Gables and Downtown) and they will run until January 17th.  Read more >>

Diversifying The Visitor Base to The Adirondacks: An Interview at The Wild Center with Multicultural Travel News

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Multicultural Travel News - News From New York, Ireland, Washington and More

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Six Weeks of Neighborhood Celebrations in Washington, DC

Cultural Tourism DC returns to its roots during September and October with more than 50 unique tours of the District of Columbia during WalkingTown DC from Saturday, September 19 through Sunday, September 27.  PorchFest lets residents showcase their neighborhood with music and art and gives visitors a chance to roam and learn about the area, its amenities, architecture, and even the potential for living there —simply by following the music from porch-to-porch. Adams Morgan PorchFest is Saturday, October 3rd from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Rhode Island Avenue Main Street PorchFest that takes place on Saturday, September 26th from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Both events are free and open to the public. Cultural Tourism DC’s Neighborhood Heritage Trail program grows this fall when two neighborhoods launch their new trails. An East of the River View: Anacostia Heritage Trail on Saturday morning, October 3 at 11 a.m. At Park/Bloomingdale Heritage Trail has its kickoff planned for Saturday, October 17 at 11 a.m. in northwest Washington. Cultural Tourism DC continues to serve as a catalyst for offering authentic experiences in the District of Columbia providing their programs through the generosity of people and companies that care deeply about the District of Columbia and local history. All of the educational programs are offered free of charge. For more information visit www.culturaltourismdc.org.  Read more >>

Leap into Ireland 2016 with Vagabond Adventures

Vagabond Adventure Tours of Ireland and their sister company, Driftwood Irish Journeys of Discovery, offer trips off the beaten path. Become a Shepherd for a Day on New Kerry UnCorked Tour - Kerry UnCorked is a new immersive and insightful eight day trip from Vagabond that distills the best of Counties Kerry and Cork in Ireland's Southwest. It ranges from a day spent working with a shepherd on a classic hill farm to cycling in Killarney National Park. There's horseback riding on the Dingle Peninsula and even a chance try surfing along one of the Southwest's most beautiful beaches. There are two nights each in the towns of Dingle and Kinsale, the latter Ireland's most famous gastronomic village. Weekly departures May through September, 2016 details at VagabondExperience Ireland through Irish Eyes - Enjoy a hands-on cooking demonstration of traditional Irish recipes on a Vagabond trip. Meet local artisan food producers and craftsmen and see them at work at their farms and studios. Join in or observe a local sporting team's training session. Meet local musicians at traditional seissuns at local pubs throughout the country. For more information, visit vagabondtoursofireland.com.  Read more >>

Cartagena, Colombia

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Low Cost Airline Volaris Inaugurates Service from JFK – Continues Focus on the Hispanic Market

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Low cost carrier Volaris, serving more destinations in Mexico than any other airline, inaugurates service from JFK on July 15th  as it continues to serve its core audience, the Hispanic Market. Miguel Aguiñiga Rodríguez, Senior Manager Mex-US/Sales & Marketing for Volaris,  in an interview with Multicultural Travel News, said that the “visiting family and relatives” market (VFR) is their key market. For that reason, since the airline was launched 9 years ago, he noted, they have been doing research to identify the largest Mexican-American population areas to establish routes to serve the VFR market.  Guadalajara is a principal destination because of the opportunity it presents to this  market as drive time from Guadalajara is only 2 to 6 hours to most key cities such as Zacatecas, Aguascalientes and Morelia, among others, destinations that are key for the Mexican ex-patriots living in the US. The airline also targets second and third generation Mexican-Americans to encourage them to visit and learn about their culture and food.The Volaris outreach to the Hispanic population is aligned with the Mexican Tourism board’s campaign with the theme “Mis Raices” targeting the Hispanic Market which will launch this August. The current “Live it to Believe it” campaign highlights the culture and food of Mexico and promotes a “Wine & Tequila Route” and “Mole Route.” The “Thousand Flavors of Mole” route encourages travelers to visit the regions of Mexico City, Tlaxcala, Oaxaca and Puebla where the famous “mole poblano” originates. The tequila route includes the city of Guadalajara, the capital of Mariachi music, itself declared as UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Volaris marketing outreach includes alliances  with the various regional  Mexican Federations around the US, as a  key way to reach their main target --  Mexicans in the US with ties to family in Mexico. Knowing that Hispanics overindex in social media usage, Volaris is also focused on utilizing Facebook where they currently have over 1,300,00 likes and Twitter with over a million followers.  And in other milestone news, earlier this month Volaris announced it transported its 50 Millionth customer. 

By Lisa Skriloff, Editor, Multicultural Travel News

Ivan Martinez-Vega, Deputy Director for Public
Relations, North America, Mexico Tourism Board (L)
and Miguel Aguiñiga Rodríguez, Senior Manager
Mex-US/Sales & Marketing, Volaris (R)