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.

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


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)

New York City Announced New Family Ambassador in its First-Ever Bilingual Tourism Campaign

Mayor Bill de Blasio and NYC & Company, New York City’s official marketing, tourism and partnership organization, together with Nickelodeon, announced Dora is returning as the seventh Official NYC Family Ambassador. The announcement was made in Orlando, Florida during IPW, the travel industry’s premier international marketplace, where NYC & Company’s president and CEO Fred Dixon was joined by Dora. As part of the yearlong campaign, the world’s most beloved explorer, Dora, will encourage family travel to the City’s five boroughs by highlighting New York City as a family-friendly destination. For the first time ever, NYC & Company’s family ambassador program will include English and Spanish content that features activities and destinations in the five boroughs for families to enjoy. A global phenomenon, Dora has crossed social, racial and language boundaries and stands as a hero and friend to millions of children around the world. The Official NYC Family Ambassador campaign will be promoted through out-of-home media in the five boroughs and in Buffalo through NYC & Company’s new city-to-city tourism partnership; social media engagement using the hashtag #nycgofamily; TV commercials running in NYC taxicabs; and digital media targeting the City’s top regional, domestic and Spanish-speaking markets. For more details on the Dora Family Ambassador campaign, visit  Read more >>

Multicultural Travel News - News From Germany, Philadelphia, Reykjavík, Puerto Vallarta and More


Reykjavík Multicultural Day

The seventh Reykjavík Multicultural Day took place on Saturday, May 9. The program kicked off at 1 pm with a parade from Hallgrímskirkja, the Reykjavík landmark church, down Laugavegur and on to the City Hall. The festival included various activities and events, such as an exhibition at the City Hall with food, arts and crafts from different parts of the world, dance, music and other performances, including Lithuanian song, Thai dance, Bulgarian dance, Brazilian Capoeira and from local circus Sirkus Íslands. Entertainment was also on offer at Iðnó, including a theater performance and performance by a local French harmonica group. In celebration of this year’s Multicultural Day, a series of lectures will take place at Reykjavík City Library at Tryggvagata 15 over the next few weeks. The program includes lectures about multiculturalism and the daily life of the Bosnian Roma population in Rome, the housing situation among Polish immigrants in Reykjavík, and stereotypes and cultural integration of Asian women in Iceland. Find out more about the event on Facebook and the Reykjavík City website.  Read more >>

Morris Museum to Host Smithsonian Traveling Exhibition Exploring the History of Indian Americans on View through July 12, 2015

From the builders of some of America's earliest railroads and farms to Civil Rights pioneers and digital technology entrepreneurs, Indian Americans have long been an inextricable part of American life. The Smithsonian traveling exhibition “Beyond Bollywood: Indian Americans Shape the Nation” details the history of Indian Americans and their contributions to the United States from the 1700s to the present. The first-of-its-kind exhibition from the Smithsonian will be on view at the Morris Museum from May 2 through July 12, 2015. The Morristown presentation of “Beyond Bollywood” will be complimented by an installation featuring twentieth century paintings by Indian American artists, a display showcasing Indian textiles and costumes, and a variety of programs and events. In conjunction with “Beyond Bollywood,”the Morris Museum will hold the following programs and events: Beyond Bollywood Family Festival, May 9, 11:00am – 4:00pm. Centered on the exhibition “Beyond Bollywood: Indian Americans Shape the Nation,” the festival offers activities for everyone in the family; Indian Magic Art Show, May 9, 1:30pm. Join world-class magical entertainer Shreeyash Palshikar for a show featuring the mysterious world of Indian magic. The performance will include the Indian rope trick, a water suspension mystery demonstration, and more; Mandala Making, May 14, 2:00-3:30pm. Creating mandalas, a meditative process that has been practiced by Buddhist monks for centuries using colored glass sand, has become a mainstay in the Western world thanks to psychiatrist/ psychologist Carl J. Jung. The mandala can be used today as a method of reducing stress, decreasing anxiety, and an opportunity for self-reflection, as the inner circle represents each individual’s personal universe. For more information, call (973) 971-3700, or visit  Read more >>

Puerto Vallarta Named an HRC National Travel Partner for 2015

The Puerto Vallarta Tourism Board has partnered with the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), America's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization, as the organization's first national travel partner. During the partnership, Puerto Vallarta will promote its adventure, gastronomy, cultural, nightlife, romance and family offerings in HRC conferences, dinners and events in 20 cities, including San Francisco, Los Angles, Minneapolis, New York and Chicago. Participants of the events will have a chance to win stays in Puerto Vallarta with hotel accommodations provided by Casa Cupula, Costa Sur Resort and Spa, Luna Liquida, Marriott CasaMagna and Villa Mercedes. Winners will also have the opportunity to have special dinners at Café des Artists or Sapphire Ocean Club and take Vallarta's Gay Bar Hopping Tour. Puerto Vallarta's Vallarta Adventures will provide access to its various activities, including the longest zipline in Mexico and the magical beach destinations of Vallarta's South. Puerto Vallarta offers visitors a friendly and supportive environment and has been Mexico's leading destination for LGBT visitors for decades. Named Gaycities' 2014 Top Beach Destination, Puerto Vallarta boasts a gayborhood home to an array of gay bars and nightclubs, gay-owned restaurants, hotels, stores, services, and entertainment that put the destination in a league of its own. Its Vallarta Pride is a 10-day celebration of LGBT culture that starts the international Pride season in May. In recent years, the Puerto Vallarta Tourism Board, the entity responsible for promoting the destination in the US and Canada has partnered with the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), GMHC and the International Gay Lesbian Travel Association (IGLTA) to promote the destination's diverse tourism offerings. In 2014, Puerto Vallarta became the first Mexican destination to participate in a World Pride with its Noche Alegre event during the World Pride celebrations in Toronto. For more information visit or contact Gustavo Rivas-Solis, Director, Latitude, (212) 633-2047 ext. 103,      Read more >>

Traditional German Culture Thrives In Philly’s Food, Historic Sites, Crafts & New Exhibitions

Multiple waves of immigration have left an indelible German influence on the Philly area. The multi-venue Celebration of Pennsylvania German Art, is exploring this legacy through traditional Pennsylvania German (a.k.a. Pennsylvania Dutch) art forms such as fraktur, letters and documents embellished with motifs such as birds and flowers. These exhibitions are just the beginning of the Pennsylvania German experience. Drawn With Spirit: Pennsylvania German Fraktur from the Joan and Victor Johnson Collection showcases more than 240 examples of fraktur (calligraphic folk art) and manuscripts at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Mounted at the sweeping Wintherthur Museum, Garden & Library, A Colorful Folk: Pennsylvania Germans & the Art of Everyday Life presents 125 works of fraktur, redware pottery, ironwork, painted furniture and textiles, all demonstrating the cultural emphasis on beauty through everyday objects. Part of the Free Library of Philadelphia’s Framing Fraktur project, Quill & Brush Pennsylvania German Fraktur and Material Culture displays both hand-drawn and printed fraktur, as well as manuscripts and books from the library’s Pennsylvania German collection. A Bridgeport diner houses Andy’s Place, serving homey dishes such as wiener schnitzel, schinkenfleckli and erlinsbacher flute (German-style hoagie). Guests can also expect plenty of German specialties on the menu at the family-owned bar and restaurant in Montgomery County’s Rockledge, Austrian Village. Brauhaus Schmitz, in addition to classic dishes, brings the traditional German beer hall to Philadelphia’s storied South Street. Held once a year in December, the Folk Art Sale at the Mennonite Heritage Center where vendors sell traditional Pennsylvania German goods and contemporary works inspired by them. For lovers of authentic cuckoo clocks, nutcrackers and beer steins, German Clocks and Gifts provides a year-round Christkindlmarket. Shoppers may find Pennsylvania Dutch goods at just about any area farmers’ market, but Lancaster County Farmers Market in Wayne distinguishes itself with sheer variety. On any given Wednesday, Friday or Saturday, shoppers can load up on smoked meats, soft pretzels, crafts and gold jewelry. Pennsylvania German art, including furniture and folk art, comprises a significant piece of the Barnes Foundation collection— it’s the largest and most significant collection of Pennsylvania German artwork anywhere in the world. Representing 16 different sites, Historic Germantown invites visitors to engage with the neighborhood’s fascinating legacy, from Revolutionary War battles to the anti-slavery movement and the Underground Railroad. As the region’s best resource for information about immigrant populations, the Historical Society of Pennsylvania maintains an enormous archive of manuscripts, books, graphics and ephemera from the 17th century and onward. For more information, visit and


Castle Hill Inn, Newport, RI, Celebrates Chinese New Year with Cantonese Inspired Menu

Castle Hill Inn, a Relais & Chateaux property located in Newport, RI celebrates Chinese New Year, February 19 – 22, with a special Cantonese inspired menu. Its original owner, Alexander Agassiz, was an avid traveler to the Far East and collector of Asian art and furniture, some of which is still on view in the Inn. His love of the culture inspired the Inn’s Chinese New Year culinary celebration. Chef Andy Taur, a member of the Castle Hill culinary team and son of Chinese-American restaurateurs, has crafted a Cantonese inspired menu to be offered over four-days Feb 19 to 22. The five-course tasting menu starts at $92 and at $127 including wine and beverage pairings. Highlights of the menu include: Shellfish Noodle featuring toasted Sichuan peppercorn, cilantro and lobster broth; Chinese Soup Dumpling featuring minced pork belly, baby bok choi and citrus soy sauce; Steamed Rouget featuring scallion purée, fermented black beans, lobster coral and lotus root; Tea Smoked Duck featuring dark soy sauce, Forbidden Black rice, braised winter bamboo and Chinese mustard greens; and Dragon’s Beard featuring peanut nougat, silken soy milk custard and young ginger. For more information about Castle Hill Inn, visit and for reservations, call 888-466-1355.



The LINQ Promenade Las Vegas Celebrates Chinese New Year with Cultural Performances on The LINQ Fountain Stage


The LINQ Promenade – Caesars Entertainment’s open-air shopping, dining and entertainment district in Las Vegas – is celebrating  Chinese New Year with themed décor and cultural performances on The LINQ Fountain Stage on  Feb. 21 – 22. The LINQ Promenade will be a part of the 4th Annual Chinese New Year in the Desert/ Las Vegas Spring Festival, and will ring in the New Year with  an opening ceremony to kick off the festivities. On Friday a ribbon cutting will be followed by music performed by The Desert Winds, a Golden Cup Championship of Ping Pong Award Ceremony, International Culinary Show hosted by Chef Martin Yan and a DragonFest Concert (also Saturday. )For more information, visit


Discovering New York State's "Path Through History" Program During Black History Month

New York State offers visitors and locals alike the opportunity to experience the "Path Through History" program offering a glimpse into the historic sites and museums that highlight African American history and American culture along with the major events that helped shape today’s society. From the Adirondacks to Long Island, New York State offers a window into African American history and American culture as it was a center for 19th century anti-slavery organizations, and home to Frederick Douglass, Harriet Tubman and many other abolitionist and Underground Railroad leaders. Today, thought-provoking historic sites, museums and events throughout New York State help visitors understand the roles and lives of enslaved Africans, the struggle for freedom and equality, and the many contributions of African Americans. There are more than 24 Underground Railroad sites throughout the state and former slaves’ quarters can be viewed at many well-preserved 17th and 18th century homes and estates. The “Path Through History” program, introduced by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, makes it even easier to explore Black heritage sites. Civil Rights, a key aspect of African American culture, are one of 13 themes used to organize 500-plus heritage sites across the state. The program includes identifying markers on major state highways as well as additional local signage with a distinctive Path Through History logo to help point the way. For more information visit