Thomson launches newly expanded youth brand with star-studded event

Leading holiday brand Thomson celebrates the launch of Thomson Scene with a #MyScene event hosted by Chelsea TV stars

  • Event celebrated the launch of a bespoke collection of holidays aimed at young sun seekers
  • Hosted by Chelsea TV stars Lucy Watson, Oliver Proudlock and Binky Felstead
  • Each celebrity curated their own ‘Scene’, inspired by their favourite Thomson Scene holiday destination
  • Celebrity attendees included Jameela Jamil and Millie Mackintosh
  • Celebratory voucher code launched

Chelsea’s hottest ‘Scenesters’ hit the red carpet for the official launch of Thomson Scene, a new collection of bespoke holidays for the youth market. The Shoreditch event, held at the award-winning Callooh Callay cocktail bar, saw Lucy Watson, Oliver Proudlock and Binky Felstead go head-to-head as they competed to host the best ‘Scene’, taking inspiration from their favourite Thomson Scene holiday destination.

Attended by a host of VIP’s including fashion designer and former Chelsea star Millie Mackintosh , celebrity DJ Jameela Jamil was in residence, playing the hottest holiday sounds throughout the evening for celebrity guests and party-goers.

Aimed at 18-35 year olds, Thomson Scene offers the perfect choice for sun seekers looking for a smart holiday base in some of the coolest party destinations.  From affordable hotels close to the action, to a selection of celeb style, luxury hangouts in 20 destinations, the newly expanded range of holidays offers a wide variety of options to suit all tastes. Hot spots featured in the Thomson Scene programme include the big hitting, party islands of Ibiza, Zante and Corfu and the chic spots of Santorini, Mykonos and Croatia, as well as long haul getaways to Mexico, Goa and Thailand.

At the launch party each VIP host curated their own ‘Scene’ within the event, selecting the décor, canapés and signature cocktails to bring to life their chosen party hotspot.

Lucy’s Scene was inspired by the party island of Ibiza, taking on a glamorous vibe with a specially created champagne cocktail, The Ibiza Royale. Glitter Lips make-up artists on hand in Lucy’s Scene to get people into the party mood.  Talking about the event, Lucy commented: “It’s been so much fun picking out all the elements I love the most about Ibiza, and bringing them to life for the launch of Thomson Scene. Ibiza is such an amazing and glamorous holiday destination, I knew instantly that it would the perfect choice to inspire my Scene!”

Drawing on the laid back vibes of Thailand, to recreate a beach party Scene, Proudlock served his guests a brand new King of Siam cocktail. Proudlock commented: “I was quietly confident going into the evening, but the girls gave me some tough competition. When I was checking out all the amazing destinations that Thomson Scene offers, Thailand was an easy stand out choice for me as the perfect combination of awesome parties and chilled out days surrounded by beautiful scenery.”

The third Scene at the event was hosted by Binky Felstead and inspired by the vibrancy of Mexico, serving traditional Mexican canapés and the El Rivington Swizzle, a tequila based cocktail. She commented: “I was just lying on the beach in Mexico last week, and it was one of the best holiday’s I’ve ever had.  So, it was a no-brainer when asked for a theme for my Scene. There are so many super cool things about Mexico that I could get creative with to showcase the style of the destination, from colourful decorations, yummy Mexican quesadillas and delicious tequila cocktails.”

Mark Hall, Director of Product for Thomson, said: “Thomson Scene combines chilled pool days with lively nights and offers a fantastic range of short, mid and long haul destinations from Ibiza, Corfu and Croatia to Goa, Mexico and Thailand.  Our new youth brand offers sun seekers a wide holiday choice from affordable hotels close to the nightlife, to celeb style luxury hangouts which offer relaxation and the chance to experience some culture in the country they are visiting.”

To mark the official launch, Thomson Scene has released a celebratory voucher code. All customers who book a Scene holiday before the end of January 2015 will receive £50 off when quoting 49196 online, 49200 in store and 49216 through the call centre at the time of booking. Offer ends 31 January 2015.

#MyScene

For more information about the launch of Thomson Scene go to: www.thomson.co.uk/holidays/scene

© Thomson

 

Iceland, iBeacons and in-flight kids clubs – Thomson and First Choice predict the top travel trends for 2015

As the festive season draws to a close and the new year is just around the corner, research shows that millions of us will have spent much of the Christmas holidays searching for our next break in the sun.  According to leading holiday brands Thomson and First Choice, the peak time for holiday searches on Christmas Day is at around 8.30pm, just hours after the turkey has gone cold and the last cracker pulled. Last year a staggering 110,000 of us chose to skip charades and endless repeats on TV, instead searching for the perfect sunshine break online.

As the New Year approaches and Thomson and First Choice’s retail and call centre teams are gearing up to help millions of customers find their perfect break, the holiday company predicts what’s hot for 2015…

EMERGING DESTINATIONS

Short and mid haul beach destinations such as Spain, Greece and Turkey continue to remain firm favourites with Brits looking for short flight times, high standards of accommodation and glorious beaches.

However the arrival of the 787 Dreamliner makes long haul flying more comfortable and easier than ever. With a boom in long haul travelling, there are a number of new destinations, which are emerging as the ‘hot’ places to go in 2015.

Long haul…

  • Costa Rica – Green and lush Costa Rica is an adventure lover’s paradise.  From November 2015 Thomson Airways is launching a new weekly service from Gatwick to exotic Costa Rica, which will be the only direct flight from the UK.
  • Aruba – white sandy beaches, gable topped houses, ramshackle bars serving fresh fish and cocktails, Aruba’s Dutch roots set it apart from other Caribbean islands.
  • Bonaire – one of the best dive and snorkelling destinations in the world. Shipwrecks, tropical fish and seahorses are ripe in the waters that surround the island.
  • Curacao – a mix of footprint-free beaches and pretty colonial town, this little colonial island in the Caribbean is slowly beginning to creep onto the tourist radar.
  • Goa, India – EDM (Electronic Dance Music) is taking this chilled out beach resort by storm, and this New Year sees the return of the globally famous Sunburn festival, making it the one of the hippest places to holiday next year. From November 2015 Thomson is adding 10 and 11 night holidays to Goa departing from Gatwick.

 Short and mid haul…

  • Iceland – famous for boiling mud pools, spurting geysers, glaciers and waterfalls, Thomson has recently announced that it will be offering three or four night breaks to Iceland from January 2016.
  • Dalmatian Coast, Croatia – situated along Croatia’s Adriatic coast is home to clear waters, secluded coves and enchanting towns, including the vibrant city of Split, Dalmatian Coast is the place to go next summer for a short haul beach holiday.
  • Mykonos and Santorini – with boutique hotels, luxury villas and label-laden shops, stylish Mykonos and Santorini are Greece’s answer to St-Tropez.
  • Cyprus – a popular destination for years, attracting everyone from families to clubbers, Cyprus has invested heavily in tourism in recent years putting it firmly back on the list of ‘must visit’ holiday destinations next year.
  • Ibiza – regarded as the cool and hip party capital of the Med, Ibiza is fast becoming the fashionable destination for families looking for great accommodation in a laid back setting.

All of the above destinations will be available in 2015, either by direct flight from the UK, or as part of Thomson Cruises’ programme.

In the longer term, Thomson Airways is currently considering expanding its operations to offer direct flights east from the UK to the stunningly beautiful Vietnam and lush and cultural Malaysia on its new 787 Dreamliner fleet. To the west, it is looking at direct flights to the Eastern Caribbean to St Lucia and Antigua, and to Bonaire and Curacao in the Antilles.

WEARABLE TECHNOLOGY AND VIRTUAL REALITY ARE NO LONGER FUTURISTIC

2014 saw mobile technology become ‘the norm’ as a way to search and book a holiday.  28% of all of Thomson and First Choice’s online bookings made between January and October 2014 were on mobile technology (smart phones and tablets).   Rich and highly tailored content can now be accessed through all devices making it a quick and easy way to book.

In 2015 Thomson predicts that the real technology game-changer will be Wearable Technology, and will be trialling this latest innovation both in the UK and overseas early next year.  With the launch of the iWatch in early 2015, wearable technology will explode onto the travel scene with smart watch apps significantly enhancing the holiday experience. At the airport, wearable boarding passes will allow travellers to board their flight with a flick of a wrist, whilst in resort they will be able to access local information, get the latest weather reports and book excursions. Holiday advisors will also able to access a wealth of information, communicate with their resort office and the UK as well as make bookings, all from the back of their wrists.

State-of-the-art Virtual Reality technology will bring the high street experience to life, allowing customers to have a personalised, inspiring and highly immersive experience in retail stores. Virtual Reality technology and high quality interactive displays will allow customers to really feel the holiday experience and tailor the choices down to the finest of detail.

iBeacons, small Bluetooth transmitters that push out information to nearby iPhone users, will also be widely used by travel companies.  Holidaymakers can receive information and guidance at key points in their journey, alerting them to gate numbers, retail offers and queues and delays in the airport, as well as hotel and resort information once on holiday.

HOLIDAY EXPERIENCE STARTS WITH THE FLIGHT

Advances in technology and inflight services means that 2015 will also see Thomson Airways trial a number of initiatives that will bring the holiday experience to life on the aircraft, helping customers plan their trips from 43,000 feet and seamlessly connect the crew with the overseas holiday teams.

On-board kids’ club will bring Thomson and First Choice child care expertise to the skies with a fully trained member of the crew to help parents keep the kids entertained with arts, crafts and quizzes that relate to the destination.

In addition, Thomson Airways will be trialling on-board HolidayMakers on selected short and mid-haul flights. These are members of the resort team who are experts on the destination who can offer advice and recommendations to customers.

Inflight entertainment will be modernised as new content and channels designed specifically for holidaymakers including a bedtime story channel for little ones, bespoke teenage content and destination inspiration channels on long-haul.

The airline’s cabin crew are also currently trialling iPads so that it can offer a more personalised customer service, share destination information and pass special requests and information over to the resort team for a seamless customer experience.

INCREASE IN CHILD-FREE HOLIDAYS FOR PARENTS

While millions of Brits enjoy their annual holiday with their children, research by Thomson showed a trend towards stressed out parents enjoying holidays as a couple, leaving their children at home with friends or family.  34% of parents of children under 18 already take child-free holidays and of those who currently holiday with their children, 57% said that given the chance, they’d go away without them.

As a result Thomson is expanding its adult-only Couples collection for 2015 following a 46% increase in bookings in the last two years fuelled by a surge in demand from worn-out parents taking holidays without their children. The rise of hands-on grandparenting is also easing the burden on stressed out parents, with over half (52%) leaving their offspring with their own parents while they enjoy some quality time away.

Jeremy Ellis, Marketing & Digital Director, said; “2015 promises to be an exciting year for travel.  The explosion of mobile technology has not only changed the way people book, it is shaping our customers’ holiday experience from start to finish.

“Long haul travel is becoming more accessible and the choice is now vast.  With the comfort and convenience of direct flights on the Dreamliner and high standards of accommodation, more holidaymakers are looking further afield.”

© Thomson

Thomson expands youth brand ‘Thomson Scene’ for 2015

Thomson’s collection of Scene hotels, launched for summer 2014 as the perfect choice for sun seekers looking for a smart holiday base in some of the coolest party destinations, has significantly increased with the integration of the ‘2wentys’ youth brand into the range. The new look Thomson Scene will provide holidaymakers aged 18-35 with the perfect break in 86 hotels in 34 resorts in 20 destinations, combining chilled pool days with lively nights out.

Re-launching and expanding for 2015, Thomson Scene now offers a broader youth proposition than previously available, with the range of bespoke holidays including dynamic yet great value bases and celeb style, luxury hangouts.

Thomson Scene customers will choose a hotel from Scene Hub, designed to appeal to existing 2wentys customers, or Scene Style. When price and central location are top of a customer’s wish list, Scene Hub is on hand to offer lively, affordable hotels that are close to the action, whilst Scene Style is the ideal choice for those who enjoy the finer things in life, offering a selection of the most stylish hotels in the Mediterranean and beyond.

Destinations include the big hitting, party islands of Ibiza and Corfu and the chic hotspots of Santorini and Mykonos while festival lovers can jet off to Croatia, home of the legendary Soundwave festival. A tailored excursion programme will meet the needs of both Scene Hub and Scene Style customers with everything from party boats in Cyprus, scuba diving in Zante and visits to the famous Turkish mud baths.

Customers will also have the opportunity to let their hair down in some of the best long haul spots, with a hotel on Mexico’s Pacific coast as well as in America’s holiday playground and infamous spring break haven, Cancun. Once in a lifetime holidays are also available to exotic destinations Goa and Thailand, where customers can enjoy excursions including an elephant ride in Goa or a Tiger Safari in Thailand before dancing the night away enjoying Phuket’s memorable nightlife.

Thomson knows that flexibility in holiday duration is key when looking for a lively break, therefore over the coming months Scene customers will be able to take advantage of flights on selected routes with third party carriers as well as Thomson Airways. This means that sun-seekers will be able to travel to more party hot spots from their local airport, take advantage of varying holiday durations including three and four night weekend breaks with more choice on the flying dates and times to best suit their needs.

Mark Hall, Director of Product for Thomson, said: “We are really excited to bring together our two youth brands, 2wentys and Scene, to deliver an even wider range of holidays for customers looking for chilled days and lively nights. For the first time, we are able to offer destinations such as Thailand, Dominican Republic, Goa, Malta and Croatia in a more youth focused brand – bringing the best of both worlds to customers who are looking for a vibrant nightlife but also want to relax and experience the culture of the country they are visiting.”

Party lovers attending this year’s 2wentys Naughty Reunion (14- 16th November) in Butlins, Skegness will enjoy a sneak preview of what Thomson Scene has to offer, as well as being treated to show stopping performances by British rapper Professor Green and hit singer-songwriter Example.

© Thomson

 

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