In Memphis, more Elvis
Nearly four decades after Elvis sang his last tune, his legacy got a big boost with the March 2 opening of a major new attraction at his Graceland estate: an entertainment complex that Priscilla Presley says gives "the full gamut" of the King of Rock 'n' Roll. About 200 people streamed into "Elvis Presley's Memphis" after the late singer's wife cut a ribbon and allowed fans to see the $45 million complex for the first time. Resembling an outdoor mall, the 200,000-square-foot campus sits across the street from Graceland, Presley's longtime home-turned-museum. The complex features a comprehensive Presley exhibit with clothing he wore on stage and guitars he played, a showcase of the cars he owned and used, a soundstage, a theater, two restaurants and retail stores.
Sun Country's new stops
Sun Country Airlines soon will fly Twin Cities passengers to California's wine country — the only carrier to offer nonstop service on the route. The Eagan-based airline announced plans for Wednesday service between Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport and Charles M. Schulz Sonoma County Airport during Northern California's harvest season. The weekly flight will run from Aug. 24 through Dec. 3. Only three airlines — American, Allegiant and Alaska — now fly to and from Sonoma County Airport in Santa Rosa, Calif. Sun Country also said it will offer seasonal service between MSP and Austin, Texas, from Aug. 31 through Dec. 10 on a weekly basis. The airline specializes in vacation packages and focuses on leisure travelers. Sun Country cited Austin's music scene and cultural cuisine as key attractions to the central Texas city. It will use the South Terminal, a renovated former military outpost-turned-terminal at the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport grounds.
Kristen Leigh Painter
Tiny houses for short stays
Small rooms are in the DNA of some new hotel brands. Now house rentals are shrinking, too, with the rise of the tiny-house hotel. This spring and summer, eight new tiny-home hotels will open across the country colonized by Colorado-built Tumbleweed tiny houses, cute mini-RVs that look like cottages or cabins. Mount Hood Tiny House Village installed five such house designs in May at a campground in Oregon. This year, the village's owner, Equity Lifestyle Properties, is installing tiny-house rentals at three more campgrounds, near Sedona, Ariz., in Leavenworth, Wash., and in Tuxbury, N.H. Other independently operated tiny-house hotels include Getaway, which opened seven in upstate New York last summer.
New York Times
MSP among best airports
Airports Council International has released its list of airports ranking customer satisfaction, and Minneapolis-St. Paul International is right there on top. It was named No. 1 in North America for airports serving 25 million to 40 million passengers a year, based on customer surveys compiled by the trade association of the world's airports. ACI interviewed more than 600,000 travelers in 84 countries, asking about such things as airport access, check-in, security screening, restrooms, stores and restaurants. Other U.S. airports receiving 2016 Airport Service Quality Awards included Indianapolis in the 5- to 15-million category, Tampa in the 15- to 25-million category and Dallas-Fort Worth in the 40-million-plus category. More than 37.5 million people passed through MSP in 2016.