While it won't happen before the end of this year, two additional Canadian cities could see non-stop air connections with Beijing sometime in 2015.

Calgary and Montreal stand to gain the routes, and the matter was discussed during APEC by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper. The two new destinations would double the number of cities with direct service to Beijing, joining Toronto and Vancouver, and cut travel times both for those in the Canadian Rockies and in Quebec, along with providing a potential tourism boost for each. No word yet on the carriers involved, but Air Canada seems a pretty obvious choice.

Also coming into service in 2015 are regular charter flights from Beijing to the island paradise known as the Seychelles. For travelers for whom the Maldives are oh so 2013, the Seychelles are a new destination with similar qualities: pristine beaches, gorgeous blue water (add cerulean here to taste), and lots of sunshine.

Have we mentioned that new visa rules have gone into effect, offering ten-year, multiple-entry visas to both PRC and US business travelers and tourists? That's still a big thing, and the first visas in these categories have already been issued. See? APEC was way more than blue skies.

The W Beijing-Chang'an opened, after having opened previously in late September. Anytime they'd like to invite us to come around and have a look, we'd love to.

The massive Kempinski complex that played host to APEC should be open to the public any moment now, although hanging out in Huairou in the winter may nto be a ton of fun.

Check out these Asia Ski Adventures from Country Holidays.

Did anybody else notice that the big walls around the CCTV Mandarin Oriental Hotel have come down and been replaced by smaller walls. The hotel is still not listed on Mandarin Oriental's main site, even though the nameplate has been up over the entrance for more than a year.

Photo: Wikimedia

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