In the News: Swine Flu Worries Travel Industry, Grey Goose Pulls Party Sponsorship

By Michael O'Connell April 29, 2009, 4:55 PM EDT

Swine Flu Worries Travel Industry: The United States may still be encouraging travel within the country, but advisories to cancel trips to Mexico—and statements from the European Union compelling Europeans to avoid America—have the U.S. Travel Association concerned about how the threat of a swine flu pandemic will affect business and leisure travel. [USA Today]

Soderbergh Calls Former Sponsor Prude: Bacardi-owned vodka brand Grey Goose was all set to sponsor the Tribeca Film Festival premiere party for Stephen Soderbergh's The Girlfriend Experience, until it suddenly pulled out, failing to offer an explanation. Soderbergh says the brand was leery of associating itself with a film featuring porn star Sasha Grey, but representatives from Bacardi maintain that it was the cost of the event that proved to be the deal-breaker. [NYP]

Prada Debuts Korean Pop-Up: The $10 million Prada “Transformer” art and event space—which we first mentioned last month—was finally unveiled to the public in South Korea last week. Women's Wear Daily has the first images of the pop-up that weighs 160 tons and will be twisted and moved into different shapes, with the help of a few cranes, during its run in Seoul. The first exhibition, “Waist Down—Skirts by Miuccia Prada,” launched last week with a private cocktail party. [WWD]

Planners With Little Work Turn to Staging: One Southern California event planner wasn't seeing much business this year, so she took a job staging a one-woman event as a faux homeowner. Johnna Clavin answered a Craigslist ad to live in an empty luxury home, decorate it in a stylish, lived-in look, and, in theory, help the absentee owners sell the property by making it seem as appealing to potential buyers as possible. To help fulfill her end of the bargain, she keeps the home immaculate, fills it with candles, music, and even the scent of fresh-baked cookies. [WSJ]

Some of the Oldest Events Are Also the Weirdest: Mark your calendars and book your tickets—Spain's annual baby-jumping festival returns this July. The annual celebration of Corpus Christi has been held since 1620, and makes a list of the world's weirdest festivals. [Telegraph]

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