Category Archives: Alaska hotels

Mexico's drug wars, not immigration law, costing Arizona hotels a bundle

The Gadling released a story today entitled “Immigration law costs Arizona hotels a bundle” where the Arizona Hotel and Lodging Association believes that tourists have cut back on their visits to the state because of its immigration law.

Their assertion couldn’t be further from the truth because it’s not Arizona’s immigration law that has prospective tourists making other plans.  It’s the violence spilling into the U.S. from Mexico’s drug wars that are to blame.

According  to a Los Angeles Times article, “Mexico Under Seige, more than 28,000 Mexican citizens have died in drug-related violence in Mexico since the start of 2007, shortly after Mexican President Felipe Calderon declared war on drug traffickers.  That’s more than the U.S. fatalities in the Iraq war.  There have been 45,000 Mexican troops and  5,000 federal police deployed to 18 states where trafficking groups are fighting local authorities and battling for access to the U.S. market.

Illegal immigration and drug smuggling have always been issues in this border state, but warring Mexican cartels are carrying violence to levels that have shocked law enforcement and government officials.  Arizona State Senator Jonathan Paton told the AFP that “It’s definitely being ramped up beyond anything we’ve ever seen before” and Senator John McCain asserts that this sort of violence is “a threat to our national security.”

Last week Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer filed an appeal to a judge’s ruling in favor of a Department of Justice petition to stop an Arizona immigration law that would have allowed state and local police to request visa papers from individuals stopped for questioning on other matters.

Nearly a dozen states filed a legal brief Friday in support of that law, arguing that the judge erred in ruling that the law interferes with the executive branch’s immigration enforcement priorities.

Tom Costello is the CEO, Partner & Co-Founder of Groups International, a company that provides marketing, consultative services, and technology solutions to the group and leisure travel markets.  Connect with him on TwitterLinkedIn, and Facebook or contact him by email.

Hotelmine Travel Planner – Alaska’s natural wonders and wildlife

Whether taking a cruise in Alaska or hitting the road, travel in Alaska offers endless options, from exploring its vibrant Native culture (its art, totem carving, dancing, music or museums) to enjoying Alaska’s natural wonders and wildlife – the glaciers, the whales, the bald eagles, and the northern lights among them.

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Among Alaska’s icons are Glacier Bay’s great whales; and in the vast waters that line Alaska’s coast, an encounter with a whale is likely, if not downright predictable. Alaska’s whale watching opportunities are the crowning jewel of many Alaska vacations. Depending on your travel plans, numerous whale watching tours are available.

Among Alaska attractions are The Chilkoot Gold Rush Trail, Soldier’s Summit on the Alaska Highway, the North Pole, dog mushing, and the Prince William Sound glaciers.

Alaska has an estimated 100,000 glaciers – with more active glaciers in Alaska than in the rest of the inhabited world. Alaska has 15 national parks, preserves and monuments, and 3.2 million acres of State Park lands.

Alaska counts the northern lights as a major attraction. Vacationers will book an hotel for one night simply to see the aurora borealis (northern lights) and many hotels have special northern lights packages.

The modern metropolis of Anchorage may be set in the heart of the Alaska wilderness, but, as Alaska’s largest city, Anchorage offers a number of historical attractions including the Alaska Museum of Natural History and the Independence Mine State Historical Park, celebrating the importance of gold in the history of Alaska.

The capital of Alaska, Juneau, has some of the most spectacular wildlife viewing in the world. The viewing of whales, brown bear and eagles is just minutes away from Juneau. A variety of wildlife tours take visitors up close to black bear, Dall porpoise, sea lions, harbor seals, sea otters, mountain goats and Sitka black tail deer. Located just 13 miles from downtown, the Mendenhall Glacier is one of Juneau’s most popular attractions. The world’s largest concentration of brown bear lives on Admiralty Island, located just 10 minutes from Juneau.

As for the weather, there is a myth that summers in Alaska are always cool. In fact the interior region of Alaska enjoys warm summers, some cities occasionally getting up into the 90s.

When in Alaska…