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October 28, 2016: Twitter to Shut Down Vine, World Series Draws Highest Viewing Numbers Since 2009, Apple Unveils New MacBook Pro Lineup

1. TWITTER TO SHUT DOWN VINE: Twitter has announced that it is shutting down Vine, its short-form video app. However, Twitter will not say yet when Vine will end. Techcrunch: "According a post, nothing is changing immediately—the website and apps will remain online for the time being, and users will be given a chance to download their Vine videos ahead of its official closure. The announcement was devoid of any explanations about what led to the decision, only stating that Twitter would share more news on its blog and via its official Twitter account in the future regarding what comes next. While the plan is to wind down Vine’s operations, Twitter also says the website will remain online because the company thinks 'it’s important to still be able to watch all the incredible Vines that have been made.' However, it’s unclear at this time how long the site will live on, given Twitter’s plans."

2. WORLD SERIES DRAWS HIGHEST VIEWING NUMBERS SINCE 2009: The first two games of this year's World Series—held Tuesday and Wednesday at Cleveland's Progressive Field—scored the highest ratings in seven years for Major League Baseball's annual championship showdown. Interest in the Chicago Cubs appears to be the driving force behind the increase in ratings. CBS Sports: "The Cubs and [Cleveland] Indians are of course locked up 1-1 through two games of the 2016 World Series. We might be in for a long and potentially dramatic series, but already this particular Fall Classic is proving to be a popular one. That's not especially surprising, considering that the Cubs are a large-market franchise with a national following. They also, of course, haven't won a World Series since 1908, which adds to the appeal.  Speaking of appeal, the 2016 World Series is already reversing a pattern of decline with regard to TV ratings. Here's this from the Associated Press: 'The first two games of the World Series averaged 18.3 million viewers on Fox, up 27 percent from last year and the most since 2009. ... The two-game average of 10.7 [rating]/19 [share] and 19.2 million is the most since 11.8/19 and 19.2 million for the Yankees-Philadelphia Series in 2009.'"

3. APPLE UNVEILS NEW MACBOOK PRO LINEUP: Apple announced details for its new MacBook Pro laptop computers at an event held Thursday at the company's headquarters in Cupertino, California. CNBC: "The new lineup, available for order on Thursday, includes a 13-inch version starting at $1,799, a 15-inch version at $2,399, and a version with traditional function keys for $1,499. The Touch Bar versions should ship in two to three weeks. The new retina display touchscreen strip, Touch Bar, adapts to whatever software the user has open and can be customized. It can be used to browse Safari, access predictive typing and emojis, adjust volume, or edit photos. It could be useful for simple tasks like navigating a video without leaving full-screen mode, or swiping through photo filters, as is done on a smartphone. Users can also log into their MacBook Pro with their fingerprint, and authorize purchases, thanks to a special chip, according to Phil Schiller, senior vice president of worldwide marketing at Apple. The new computers also have a dedicated key for Siri, and can still be used as traditional function keys, said Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of software engineering. Users can even switch user profiles on the MacBook using just their fingerprint, Federighi said."


Interstate Hotels & Resorts C.E.O. Jim Abrahamson has been named chairman of the board. He will serve as both the company's chairman and C.E.O. until a new C.E.O. has been appointed.


COAST TO COAST:  The Light of Day Foundation, which raises money and awareness to help defeat Parkinson's disease, will host its Light of Day Winterfest 2017: The Beat Goes On event January 6-16. The event will bring 150 music acts to 30 venues in New York, Philadelphia, and the New Jersey cities of Asbury Park and Montclair.

ATLANTA:  Davidson Hotels & Resorts is now managing Renaissance Atlanta Midtown Hotel. The 304-room hotel is owned by Carey Watermark Investors 2.

BOSTON:  The Amadeus Hospitality Customer Conference will take place May 17-19.

DALLAS/FORT WORTH:  The Dallas Holocaust Museum/Center for Education and Tolerance will build a new permanent home in the West End Historic District of downtown Dallas. The new 50,000-square-foot museum will bear a new name—the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum—and an expanded mission. It will be built on property owned by the museum near Houston Street and the DART Rail corridor on Pacific Avenue, diagonally across from the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza. The new museum is being designed by Omniplan Architects, and the permanent exhibition is being designed by Berenbaum Jacobs Associates, under the stewardship of Michael Berenbaum, the former project director of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum on the Washington D.C. Mall.

LAS VEGAS:  The seventh annual Fashion for Autism Gala will take place November 5 at Aria Resort & Casino Las Vegas. The theme of the event—which benefits the Grant a Gift Autism Foundation—is "Bringing a Solution Into Focus" and will feature fashion from Diane von Furstenberg.

Celebrity chef Masaharu Morimoto has debuted Morimoto Las Vegas, his new Japanese restaurant at the MGM Grand. Menu offerings include soft shell crab roll, tuna pizza, braised black cod, and aged sakes.

LOS ANGELES:  The U.S. China Film & TV Industry Expo will take place Wednesday to Friday at L.A. Live. The event is presented in partnership with The Hollywood Reporter, the Motion Picture Association of America, and the China Film Co-Production Corporation.

Oceanwide Plaza, the downtown Los Angeles mixed-used development that is scheduled for completion in early 2019, will include a 166,000-square-foot, open-air galleria and a 184-room Park Hyatt Los Angeles. The property will be near the Staples Center and  L.A. Live.

For information on upcoming events in Los Angeles, visit Masterplanner:

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  John Legend will headline the 22nd Annual InterContinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball, which will take place November 12 at InterContinental Miami. The Voice Season 10 winner Alisan Porter will also perform at the event, which will once again be hosted by actress/filmmaker Gabrielle Anwar, and chaired by philanthropist Shareef Malnik. The theme of this year’s ball is “La Nuit de l’Animal: A Fairy Tale,” inspired by enchantment, majestic animals, and fantasy.

American Hotel Income Properties REIT, through its subsidiaries, will acquire a portfolio of six hotels in Florida for $61 million, excluding post-acquisition adjustments and the cost of property renovations. The hotels include the 111-room Holiday Inn Express & Suites in Fort Myers and the 101-room Holiday Inn Express & Suites in Sarasota. The deal is expected to close before the end of November.

Cendyn, the cloud-based hospitality software and services company headquartered in Boca Raton, has made three new appointments: Bryan Happ as chief financial officer, Michael Bennett as senior vice president global marketing and business development, and David Kidd as vice president of product management.

Homewood Suites by Hilton Miami-Airport/Blue Lagoon has named Allie Singer director of sales. She was senior cluster sales manager at White Lodging Services.

NASHVILLE:  The Westin Nashville has opened at 807 Clark Place in the Downtown District. The 27-floor, 453-room hotel is owned and developed by Castlerock Asset Management and managed by Wischermann Partners. In addition to having the L27 rooftop bar, the Westin Nashville has two signature restaurants: Oak Steakhouse Nashville offers classic American fare with a Southern twist and craft cocktails accompanied by live music, while the Decker & Dyer provides a more casual lounge and eatery in the hotel lobby. The Westin Nashville also has 20,000 square feet of adaptable event space, including prefunction areas and 12 meeting venues.

NEW YORK:  The Fast Company Innovation Festival will take place Tuesday to Friday, with more than 125 panels and events taking place at venues including Civic Hall and New York University's Skirball Center for the Performing Arts. Speakers will include Melinda Gates, Tim Armstrong, Samantha Bee, and Cher.

Ryman Hospitality Properties and SPK Hospitality Group have teamed up for Opry City Stage, a four-level entertainment complex on Broadway in Times Square. Set to open in April 2017, Opry City Stage will offer Nashville food and music, including live entertainment and simulcast performances from the Grand Ole Opry House in a two-floor bar and restaurant space. A listening room and private event space will occupy the fourth floor, and the ground level will hold the complex’s retail area with many of Nashville’s signature brands.

SmartSource Computer & Audio Visual Rentals has appointed Nikki Corsini as marketing automation specialist.

For information on upcoming events in New York, visit Masterplanner:

TORONTO:  International contemporary and modern art fair Art Toronto runs today through Monday at Metro Toronto Convention Centre. The event, which will feature works from numerous art galleries in the city, is sponsored by the Royal Bank of Canada.

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With contributions from Jenny Berg in Chicago, Alesandra Dubin and Claire Hoffman in Los Angeles, Mitra Sorrells in Orlando, and Carla Hay, Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, Jill Menze, and Ian Zelaya in New York.

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