Great Moments in Travel History – June 2017

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Hoshinoya Okinawa Resort

Hoshinoya Okinawa Resort

The Hyatt Regency Century Plaza hotel opened in Los Angeles on June 1, 1966. The hotel has seen famous guests such as Josip Broz Tito, Yugoslavian revolutionary and president; Moshe Dayan, Israeli Minister of Defense; Prince Phillip, husband of Queen Elizabeth II; and David Ben-Gurion, first Prime Minister of Israel.

The Washington Plaza Hotel opened on June 29, 1969. Still open today, the property was the first luxury hotel to open in downtown Seattle since 1929, and was called one of Seattle’s seven wonders, along with Woodland Park Zoo, the Monorail, Pike Place Market, and the Space Needle.

The 1973 Paris Air Show crash took place on June 3, 1979. Fourteen people died when a Tupolev Tu-144, a supersonic (SST) passenger jet referred to as the Konkordski (for its resemblance to the Anglo-French Concorde) crashed at the show.

Los Angeles International Airport’s Tom Bradley International Terminal opened on June 11, 1984.

On June 16, 1984, pilot Emily Warner and co-pilot Barbara Cook piloted the first all-female commercial airline crew, on a Frontier Airlines flight from Denver to Lexington, Kentucky.

On June 23, 1985, a bomb exploded in the cargo hold of Air India Flight 182, causing the Boeing 747 to crash off the coast of Ireland, resulting in the death of all 307 passengers and 22 crewmembers. One passenger, an “M. Singh” had checked in but never boarded the flight, although his suitcase, which contained the bomb, was loaded onto the flight. Sikh extremists were later blamed for the incident and were believed to have been acting in retaliation for the Indian government having attacked the Golden Temple in the city of Amritsar.

The Hilton Shanghai opened its doors on June 28, 1988. The 714-room property was the first hotel from an international chain to open in China. It has hosted numerous members of royalty and heads of state since then.

On June 4, 1989, the Ufa train disaster occurred on the Kuybyshev Railroad outside of Ufa in the western Soviet Union. Two trains, one carrying passengers back from vacation on the Black Sea, and the other taking passengers there, passed each other and caused sparks that ignited a flammable cloud that had been created by a pipeline leaking liquefied natural gas. This resulted in an explosion that killed 575 people and injured 800, many of them children.

The Boeing 777 established a new speed record, of nine hours and two minutes, on June 11, 1995 on a flight from Seattle to the Paris Air Show at Le Bourget.

On June 26, 1995, Boeing’s board of directors authorized production of the 777-300. The aircraft is the world’s largest long-range twin-engine commercial airliner.

The Boeing 737-800 was unveiled outside the Renton, Washington, assembly plant on June 30, 1997. The aircraft is a stretch version of the 737-700, and replaced the 737-400.

On June 1, 2008, the ferry MV Princess of the Stars capsized in the Philippines on its way from Manila to Cebu City when Typhoon Fengshen (also known as Typhoon Frank) passed through the region. On June 24, 2008, the Philippine Coast Guard reported that of the 862 passengers on board the ship, there were only 48 confirmed survivors, while 67 were confirmed dead, and 747 remained missing.

On June 1, 2009, Air France Flight 447, an Airbus A330-200, crashed in the Atlantic Ocean en route to Paris from Rio de Janeiro. All 228 people onboard died in what was the first fatal accident involving an A330.The aircraft itself was not recovered until 2011 and examination of data from the flight data and cockpit voice recorders revealed that the crash occurred due to crew confusion over the loss of instrumentation with subsequent loss of aircraft control.

The Hoshinoya Okinawa Resort opened on Taketomi Island in Japan on June 30, 2012. The island is in the southernmost part of Japan, isolated from other islands in the archipelago, and is part of a national park.

Delta Air Lines acquired Singapore Airlines’ 49% stake in Virgin Atlantic Airways on June 24, 2013.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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