Create a new USA experience

The latest Visit USA Travel Planner offers lots of ideas and inspiration to help anyone planning a visit to the USA in 2017.


This comprehensive 68-page publication includes a useful map – the perfect tool for those looking to explore outside the main gateway cities – as well as state profiles and articles on topics ranging from the Great Outdoors and Live Sport to Classic Cuisine, Wildlife and the Old West.

Take a closer look at the eclectic mix of travel experiences the USA has to offer.

Detroit’s new Motown spin

The Motown Museum in Detroit is planning a major expansion that will greatly enhance the visitor experience.


The $50-million-dollar expansion, which will begin next year, will see the museum grow to a 50,000 square foot tourist attraction, featuring interactive exhibits, a state-of-the-art performance theatre, recording studios and an expanded retail experience.

The ‘new’ Motown Museum will be designed and built around the current museum space and the Hitsville U.S.A. house.

"This expanded facility will be an exhilarating national and international tourist destination which will allow us to narrate and celebrate on a much larger scale what the Motown legacy is recognized for: unmatched creative genius that transcends every barrier imaginable by bringing people together from all walks of life to share in that unmistakable Motown Sound,” says Robin R. Terry, Chairwoman and CEO of Motown Museum.

Motown was the sound that changed America and became one of the most significant musical accomplishments of the 20th century, with more than 180 number one hit songs worldwide from artists such as Smokey Robinson And The Miracles, Marvin Gaye, Diana Ross and the Supremes, Stevie Wonder and Gladys Knight And The Pips.

Duchess is an American dream

American Duchess will make its debut cruise on June 4 2017, sailing from New Orleans to Memphis.


The 166-guest riverboat, the first all-suite paddlewheeler on American waters, is the third for the American Queen Steamboat Company (AQSC) and will join American Queen and American Empress.

It will operate 16 similar cruises on this part of the Lower Mississippi in early summer and then again in the autumn and early winter 2017.

Nashville will feature on the Duchess’ schedule with four cruises between Nashville and Memphis and two seven-day Nashville round-trips in December.

AQSC cruises are always themed and the Duchess will feature ‘Chicago Blues’ and ‘Music of America’ cruises, celebrating the region's musical heritage.

New AQSC cruise themes specifically chosen for the American Duchess include an ‘Architecture and the Arts’ St. Louis to Ottawa (Illinois) cruise and a 'Cultured Culinary' cruise from St. Louis to Memphis.

Prices for the Memphis-New Orleans cruise, departing June 25 2017, lead in at £3,195pp.

The deal includes seven nights onboard, flights from Heathrow and one night pre-cruise in a hotel.

Packages include all meals and soft drinks onboard, shore excursions in all ports and complimentary wine and beer with dinner.

Florida Hyatt adds waterpark

The Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa in Bonita Springs in southwest Florida has opened a new waterpark.


The $7.1 million facility features three three-storey waterslides with two speed slides and one inner-tube slide slide and a 1,095-ft heated lazy river.

By adding one acre to the hotel’s existing two-acre pool area the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point complex becomes one of the largest resort poolscapes in Florida.

The new waterpark, built among more than 5,000 native Floridian plants and trees, joins the resort’s existing 2,700-sq-ft waterfall pool with its cool water cascades, 5,000-sq-ft heated adventure pool with a 140-ft corkscrew slide and a free-form lagoon-style pool. The hotel also has an adults-only heated pool with an adjacent hot tub.

In addition, the waterpark, which is is open exclusively to registered hotel guests, will serve as a multi-functional recreation area after adding new culinary offerings with both a food truck, serving a seasonal menu of cuisines, and the newly renovated Corkscrew Pool Bar.

Other facilities at the 454-room resort include world-class golf, a spa and the award-winning Tanglewood restaurant.

The Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa is located between Naples and Ft. Myers.


New York’s history retold

One of New York City’s leading cultural attractions has a new reason for international visitors to include it on Big Apple itineraries.

New York

The Museum of the City of New York has opened a major new permanent exhibit, New York at its Core, the first-ever museum show to interpret and present the story of New York’s rise from a striving Dutch village to today’s global city.

Occupying the entire first floor in three interactive galleries of the Museum’s landmark building on New York’s Museum Mile, New York at Its Core is shaped by four themes: Money, Density, Diversity and Creativity.

Five years in the making, New York at Its Core captures the human energy that drove New York through characters that include Alexander Hamilton, Walt Whitman, JP Morgan, Jay-Z and dozens more.

Even animals like the horse, the pig, the beaver, and the oyster, which played pivotal roles in the economy and daily life of New York, get their moment in the historical spotlight.

More than 400 objects, many from the Museum’s rich collection, are complemented by state-of-the-art interactive options that invite visitors to engage with the rich stories presented in New York at Its Core.

Highlights include a a sterling silver and wood ceremonial shovel from the groundbreaking of the first subway (1900); a silver cocktail shaker and cup made by Tiffany and Company during Prohibition (1928); a baseball signed by the Brooklyn Dodgers, including Jackie Robinson; a Studio 54 guest list, including Liberace, Ringo Starr, and Lindsay Wagner (1978); and Milton Glaser’s original concept sketch for the “I Heart New York” campaign.

Maverick’s heli-yoga flight

Maverick Helicopters has a new HeliYoga experience that combines a luxury helicopter flight with yoga at the Valley of Fire State Park.


The two-and-a-half hour excursion includes limo coach transportation from the Las Vegas Strip to Maverick Helicopters’ Las Vegas terminal, where up to six guests depart with a yoga instructor to the Valley of Fire.

The helicopter descends and lands on one of the highest peaks of Valley at the Fire, which is accessible only via helicopter.

The peak offers unsurpassed views of the area’s spectacular red sandstone formations and passengers will have an opportunity to explore the remote landscape by foot and take in the area’s extraordinary sights before being led through their private, 75-minute yoga session, offered by local company, Silent Savasana.

Valley of Fire is considered one of the most remote destinations in the southwest U.S.

The day concludes with a flight over downtown Las Vegas and the Las Vegas Strip.

Maverick Helicopters, a division of Maverick Aviation Group, flies more than 200,000 guests annually out of four locations: Las Vegas, Grand Canyon South Rim, Grand Canyon West Rim and Maui, Hawaii.

Virgin’s third L.A. flight

Virgin Atlantic has shuffled its summer schedule to offer a third non-stop daily service between London and Los Angeles.


Beginning May 2017, the airline will fly three times a day between Heathrow and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), a move made in conjunction with its joint venture partner, Delta Air Lines.

All three services on the route will be operated by a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft.

The flights will leave Heathrow at 10.10, 13.00 and 15.25, arriving respectively at 13.20, 16.10 and 18.25.

The return flights will leave Los Angeles at 15.45, 18.30 and 20.55, arriving the next morning at 10.15, 12.55 and 15.30.

By next May, the two airlines will be co-located in LAX Terminal 2, making connections between flights seamless for customers who want to travel onwards to over 20 Delta destinations, including Mexico, Hawaii and other parts of the U.S.

Virgin has been flying between LA and London for over 25 years.

In 2017, the airlines’ joint summer 2017 schedule includes a total of 40 peak daily non-stop flights between the U.S. and the U.K. Of these, 28 flights will operate between London Heathrow and popular U.S. destinations such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, Atlanta and Washington D.C., and 14 flights will operate between Manchester, Glasgow, Belfast, London Gatwick and Edinburgh to popular U.S. cities.