Skift Travel News Blog

Short stories and posts about the daily news happenings around the travel industry.

Online Travel

Airbnb and Other Brands Awash With Barbie Hype

8 months ago

The marketing team behind Barbie have made the doll a household name. The upcoming summer release of the official Warner Bros. movie ‘Barbie‘ on July 21, and the subsequent marketing push behind it, in part, illustrates how an 11.5-inch doll has managed brand success for over 60 years. 

Barbie Dreamhouse listing on Airbnb. Source: Airbnb

Airbnb has unveiled a listing, Welcome to Barbie’s Malibu DreamHouse – Ken’s Way, which opens to the public for a free stay, on a first come first serve basis. Booking is from July 17, and is for two individual one-night stays, for up to two guests each, on July 21 and July 22, 2023 only. Airbnb said it will make a one-time donation to Save the Children, to honor girls’ empowerment, in the announcement of the listing that coincides with the movie’s release.

In Los Angeles there is a full activation called “World of Barbie”, bringing her DreamHouse and DreamCamper to life for an immersive experience. It also features an adults-only cocktail bar. From a Barbie hotel, and a Barbie Fan Girl Cruise, these are just some of brands that appear to have joined the pink Barbie brigade.  

Named one of America’s most trusted brands in 2022, despite remaining controversially polarizing, the gross sales of Mattel’s Barbie brand amounted to about $1.49 billion worldwide in 2022. Interestingly, this figure is down, compared to 2021, when gross sales reportedly reached $1.68 billion.


IDEAS: Palazzo Avino Collaborates with Valentino for Summer Beach Takeover

8 months ago

This summer, Palazzo Avino – a 12th century villa turned five star hotel – has partnered with Maison Valentino on a ‘Summer Beach Takeover’. 

The collaboration will see the renowned fashion house transform the Hotels’ Clubhouse by the Sea, bringing a collection of custom furniture and soft furnishings to the premises. The grounds will be adorned with a range of items including, deckchairs, sun loungers, and beach umbrellas, all featuring Valentino’s iconic shade of red.

Credit: Palazzo Avino x Valentino

Valentino is also set to extend its presence to the boutique located within the property’s grounds on the Amalfi Coast, offering guests a curated selection of Valentino’s latest offerings from the Escape 2023 collection.  

Credit: Palazzo Avino x Valentino

“Growing up in an Italian family when talking about fashion, Valentino was the brand, was the designer, and is linked to Italian history so deeply, and I could not think of a better partner to align our hotel with,” said Mariella Avino, managing director & owner at Palazzo Avino.

Credit: Palazzo Avino x Valentino

The Palazzo Avino x Valentino partnership is the latest in a wave of luxury collaborations between major fashion brands and luxury hotels, proving that the luxury travel market is as lucrative as ever.

At Skift, we are looking to unearth the most creative and forward-thinking innovations in travel through our Skift Ideas Franchise, which includes the Skift IDEA Awards, Skift Editorial Hub and the Skift Ideas Podcast.

You can listen and subscribe to the Skift Ideas Podcast through your favorite podcast app here.


JetBlue Embraces Blue in Its First Major Livery Update in Two Decades

8 months ago

As if JetBlue Airways didn’t have enough on its plate, the airline has unveiled a branding refresh with a new all-blue livery for its fleet.

The new livery drops the standard white aircraft fuselage that JetBlue has used since its launch in 2000 for an all-blue one. The carrier also enlarged its name on the side of planes, and added its logo to the bottom for easy spotting from the ground. JetBlue will continue to use a myriad of different tail designs across its fleet.

JetBlue’s new look on an Airbus A321neo. (JetBlue)

“Liveries have always been a part of our identity,” JetBlue Head of Marketing and Loyalty Jayne O’Brien said. “The new livery helps us stand out among a sky of legacy carriers, and is a stunning reflection of our role as a disruptor that uniquely combines lower fares and great service.”

One does have to question the timing of JetBlue’s livery announcement. The airline just lost an antitrust case with the U.S. Justice Department and may, pending a possible appeal, need to end its lucrative partnership with American Airlines. The Justice Department has also sued to block its proposed merger with Spirit Airlines, which JetBlue executives have said is critical to its future competitiveness. And the airline continues to face challenges with elevated costs — making the investment in a new look now questionable.

And, to paraphrase former American CEO Doug Parker after he orchestrated a merger with US Airways in 2013, travelers don’t buy tickets based on the exterior look of the plane.

JetBlue plans to update the look of its fleet as aircraft come in for regular paint refreshes. That process can take years. The first plane sporting the livery, an Airbus A321neo, will enter passenger service at New York JFK on June 15.