traveling brands

JetBlue Goes Upmarket with New Premium Seating

Posted by Mark J. Miller on August 5, 2013 03:27 PM

While its long been known as an "equal opportunity" airline, JetBlue is tired of missing out on all those lucrative upgrade fees that competing airlines have been taking advantage of for years. With that, the discount brand is flipping its image and introducing premium seats on some of its planes. 

"It's a big change for us culturally," Scott Laurence, JetBlue's vice president of network planning, told the Wall Street Journal.

While it's known for its universally coach cabin, the new premium seats at the front of the plane will come with free alcoholic beverages and hot means, while on select flights, seats will convert into lie-flat beds, and some will even be “walled off from the aisle by sliding doors."Continue reading...

sip on this

Bloomberg's NYC Soda Ban Dubbed Unconstitutional by Appeals Court

Posted by Mark J. Miller on July 30, 2013 03:42 PM

Michael Bloomberg, the mayor of New York City, has been dealt yet another blow on his warpath to ban oversized, sugary drinks. The four judges from New York state's Supreme Court Appellate Division unanimously ruled Tuesday that the city’s attempt to stop larger-size sodas from being sold in the Big Apple’s restaurants is unconstitutional. 

Mayor Bloomberg, who has taken on the cause personally, is prepared to carry on the fight to ban sodas 16 ounces and larger from being sold in NYC eateries. "Today's decision is a temporary setback, and we plan to appeal this decision as we continue the fight against the obesity epidemic," Bloomberg said in a statement.Continue reading...


The Internet of Bling Comes to Life with BaubleBar Pop-Up Strategy

Posted by Brittany Waterson on July 15, 2013 03:16 PM

Online jewelry retailer BaubleBar, founded by Harvard grads Amy Jain and Daniella Yacobovsky, launched its second US pop-up shop in New York’s Soho district in June. The Greene Street shop, which will remain open until August 13, follows the e-tailer's first shop in New York's Meatpacking district back in February.  

The Soho shop features weekly special events on their website, including happy hours and book signings—all an effort to establish BaubleBar as an exciting destination online and off.

The e-tailer teamed up with digital agencies Gin Lane Media and Perch Interactive to enhance and personalize the customer experience, with the pop-up featuring touchscreens, a bar serving Godiva cocktails, its own App and more to help engage shoppers. Customers are encouraged to take photos and upload them via Olapic, a platform that places user-generated content directly on a brand’s website.Continue reading...

chew on this

America Still Nuts for Cronuts as Chef Aims to Use Fame to Help Others

Posted by Mark J. Miller on July 5, 2013 11:33 AM

A combination of a croissant and donut that debuted in New York in May has inspired plenty of people to stand in line, not just to sample one but to get a trademark for it, too.

New York’s Dominique Ansel Bakery in the city's Soho neighborhood started turning out its signature cronut pastry in May to the pleasure of thousands of customers who, thanks to foodie blogs and social media buzz, started lining up early each morning to snag their own.

In fact, so many fans started queuing up around the block (see brandchannel editor-in-chief Shirley Brady's photo below)—that the bakery had to increase its staff and limit how many cronuts a consumer can buy, with each cronut going for $5 a piece. The flaky pastry has even spawned some less-than-legal activity, including cronut scalpers and the "cro-job." 

Other bakeries took note and now cronut-inspired treats are also being sold across the US and overseas, from Philadelphia to Los Angeles, and even in London—much to Ansel's chagrin, Bloomberg reports. His challenge, of course: to sustain the buzz and build his brand without becoming a one-note, cronut wonder.Continue reading...

luxury watch

New York Looking to Hold Buyers More Accountable in the War Against Counterfeit Luxury Goods

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 13, 2013 01:54 PM

New York City loses $1 billion a year in tax money thanks to counterfeit goods being sold on its streets. At least that’s what one City Council member is saying to help promote her bill that would have police arresting those who buy the products as well as the those who sell them, according to the Associated Press.

The plan, which will be addressed at a public meeting on Thursday and is expected to come to vote in the next few months, is to have the buyers of fake Pradas, Chanels and other luxury goods either fined $1,000 or put in jail for a year.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s administration is planning to oppose the bill, the New York Post reports, because the size of the fine would keep tourists from buying pretty much anything. Plus, it wouldn’t be good PR to have images of tourists in jail floating around.Continue reading...


eBay Debuts Shoppable Touchscreen Windows in Latest Retail Expansion

Posted by Sheila Shayon on June 5, 2013 03:17 PM

eBay is diving deeper into mobile-enabled, real-time shopping with the launch of "shoppable windows," which will bolster the site's partnership with physical retailers while capitalizing on the greater shift to on-the-go shopping. 

The once online auction-only behemoth continues to expand its role as a middleman between consumers and retailers, following earlier pop-up shops and virtual storefronts. Last year saw the introduction of the mobile, same-day delivery shopping service eBay Now (which is relaunching on mobile) as well as partnerships with major retailers such as Macy's on mobile payments, and wooing major retailers like Target.

The first four windows will be open from June 8 through July 7 in New York City, each offering 30 items from the new Kate Spade Saturday collection, which was recently launched by Fifth & Pacific. The screens, which measure 9 feet across and 2 feet high, are placed on the front windows of closed stores, allowing shoppers to touch and order products, which are delivered within an hour via courier. Payment will be accepted by couriers through PayPal Here, eBay’s mobile payment service.Continue reading...

brands under fire

Puerto Rican Community Outraged Over Branded Coors Light Can

Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 29, 2013 06:02 PM

Puerto Rican flags are seen pretty much everywhere you look when New York City celebrates Puerto Rico Day, but one place the community doesn’t want to see a flag (or even a suggestion of one) is on a beer can. The folks at MillerCoors are learning that the hard way.

Coors Light is the official beer of this year’s National Puerto Rican Day Parade on June 9. To commemorate that, the brewer placed an image on the beer’s cans that combines an apple, a star, and the colors of the Puerto Rican flag. This has not gone over well, despite the company and the organizers of the parade both saying that the image is not the Puerto Rican flag, NBC Latino reports.

“This is an insult to our culture, history, and flag,” says Lucky Rivera, of Boricuas for a Positive Image, according to the site. “We will not allow Coors to insult us.”Continue reading...

long arm of the law

After Ruling in New York, Airbnb Sees More Legal Troubles on the Horizon

Posted by Barry Silverstein on May 22, 2013 06:25 PM

Airbnb, an online booking service that allows anybody to rent out any premises for as little as a night, sounds like a great idea that leverages the "sharing economy.” Investors think Airbnb is pretty slick too: Two years ago, the San Francisco company was valued at over a billion dollars and today its value has more than doubled.

But is Airbnb about to experience a crash landing? A judge in New York City has just ruled that an Airbnb user broke an “illegal hotel” law when Nigel Warren rented out the bedroom of his apartment in the East Village for three days. The law “restricts residents from renting out apartments, or rooms in them, for fewer than 30 days, unless they are also living in the home during the guests’ stay.”

Airbnb representatives appeared in court along with Warren, arguing that “certain language” in the code allowed him to make the room available to a renter. But judge Clive Morrick indicated that “Airbnb renters did not have access to all parts of the apartment, specifically the room of Mr. Warren’s roommate, who was still living there while Mr. Warren was away and renting out his room.”Continue reading...

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