Chill with Branson
Finding a familiar-looking goateed man floating in a cold drink will not be an uncommon experience for passengers flying upper class with Virgin Atlantic this month. The ‘Little Richard’ – ice cubes carved in the shape of Sir Richard Branson’s head – will be chilling in upper-class drinks on selected flights to celebrate the launch of the airline’s new in-flight bar. The ice cubes have been built to scale, using the exact measurements of the tycoon’s noggin. A spokesman for Virgin said the novelty cubes meant “all passengers will be able to enjoy some chill-out time with Mr Branson”.
Hello Kitty Air
Taiwanese airline Eva Air has launched a series of Hello Kitty-themed planes to carry passengers from Taipei to the likes of Hong Kong in an excessively cutesy fashion. As well as having exteriors daubed with the cartoon cat, there are more than 100 specially designed Hello Kitty items on board the flights, from Hello Kitty-shaped fruit and pasta to branded cups. The airline has even installed alarmingly pink check-in counters to start the experience of flying Hello Kitty Eva Air the way it means to
go on. Good grief.
Inside a volcano
We’ve been bigging up the adventure potential of Iceland recently, and just to prove our point the country has gone and launched the world’s first ever tour inside a volcano. Thrihnukagigur, which has been dormant for about 4000 years, will be open to visitors this summer. It’s a 30-minute drive from Reykjavik, andtravellers will have to hike across a lava field before descending 120m to the bottom of the volcano’s crater in an open cable lift, where they will spend an hour taking a tour of the inside with a team of experts. See insidethevolcano.com for more.
Aus builds Titanic II
An Aussie billionaire has announced plans to build a replica of the Titanic, just weeks after the 100th anniversary of the ship sinking on its maiden voyage. Mining magnate Clive Palmer has commissioned Chinese company CSC Jinlin Shipyard to build Titanic II – a clone set to sail from England to New York in 2016. Palmer reassured worried travellers: “It is going to be designed so it won’t sink. It will be designed as a modern ship with all the technology to ensure that doesn’t happen.” Haven’t we heard that before?