Skift Take

Today’s edition of Skift’s daily podcast looks at a new hotel design trend, United's deal with Mesa Air, and a rare big non-gaming deal in Macau.

Series: Skift Daily Briefing

Skift Daily Briefing Podcast

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Good morning from Skift. It’s Tuesday, December 20, and here’s what you need to know about the business of travel today.

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Episode Notes

The ongoing pilot shortage recently prompted Mesa Airlines to sign on under a five-year contract as a regional carrier with United Airlines after its decades-old partner American Airlines dropped it on Saturday. The partnership shakeup was due to American refusing to cover the higher pilot salaries regional airline Mesa has been forced to pay because of the ongoing pilot shortage, reports Edward Russell, editor of Airline Weekly, a Skift brand. The partnership, which has existed since 1992, comes to an end on April 3.

As part of the five-year deal, United will get some or all of the 38 Bombardier aircraft that currently flies for American, writes Russell. All of Mesa’s pilots and staff will support United’s operations beginning in March. They will start off at American’s existing bases but eventually to a new United base in Denver and potentially four more undisclosed locations. At the moment, it’s unclear how many American Eagle planes Mesa can hand over under the new United Express contract.

Next, so-called maximalism makes a comeback in hotel interior design, writes Skift contributor Carley Thornell.

A recent design trends report by TikTok and Airbnb found the maximalist aesthetic has become more emphasized in design, displacing minimalism, which has been dominant for a decade. TikTok videos featuring maximalist styles have apparently drawn 693 million views.

Architect and interior designer Bill Bensley is leading the emerging maximalist trend. A key aspect of Bensley’s design style is his use of an explosion of color, plant life and pattern, writes Thornell. Bensley recently finished up an up-cycling project at Thailand’s new InterContinental Khao Yai Resort, which has repurposed train cars as colorful and vibrant rooms reminiscent of the golden age of travel. The train cars also feature real or simulated plants as part of biophilia, which evokes natural elements and connections in guests.

Finally, six casino companies have agreed to invest $15 billion in Macau over 10 years, mostly in non-gaming projects, writes Asia Editor Peden Bhutia.

The six companies were MGM China, Galaxy Entertainment, Sands China, Melco Resorts, Wynn Macau and SJM Holdings. The autonomous Chinese city renewed their casino licenses for over 10 years, starting January 1. Over the decade, the companies will invest $13.5 billion on non gaming projects.

The new influx of investment could help Macau diversify its tourism economy and be less dependent on its position as a gaming hub. Nearly 60 percent of its gross domestic product comes from the gaming sector.

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Tags: gaming, guest experience, labor, macau, mesa airlines, skift podcast, united airlines

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