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Rediscovering the U.S. at World's Fair in Seville

October 28, 1990| Compiled from Times staff and wire service reports

"Rediscover the U.S.A." is the theme for the United States' pavilion at the 1992 World's Fair in Seville, Spain.

The design for the $8-million pavilion features 50,000 square feet of exhibition space, gardens and a state-of-the-art theater. The pavilion is intended to be symbolic of Columbus' voyage across the Atlantic in 1492, and in keeping with the Expo '92 theme of "The Age of Discovery."

Toward that end, three sun shades in the form of sails rise above the pavilion, an allusion to Columbus' ships, and a 40-foot high waterfall cascades down the entranceway into a moat representing the Atlantic.

Designed by Barton Myers Associates of Los Angeles, the pavilion will be prefabricated in the United States and shipped to Seville for completeion by April, 1992. The focus of its exhibits will be trade and tourism, with every state and major city invited to participate.

Travel Quiz: Which city in Florida is home to Disney World?

Nothing to Rail At: Penn Station in New York City has made life a little more comfortable for its more affluent travelers.

Amtrak passengers with first-class tickets can avail themselves of a new lounge that provides upholstered seating for 100 people, telephones and FAX machines, a refreshment counter with free coffee and soft drinks, as well as a reception desk and information where reservations can be made or changed.

Hours are 5:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. on weekdays, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekends. The lounge is restricted to passengers carrying tickets for parlor car, club-service seats or sleeper space.

Quick Fact: There are one billion more Chinese in the world than there are Mexicans.

Dem Bones, Dem Bones: The most famous human fossils from Africa and Eurasia are on display in Brussels at the Palais des Beaux-Arts through Dec. 30, as part of an exhibition on human biological and cultural origins. About 200 original items, most never before displayed, are featured in this one-time exhibit.

Highlights include bones of Australopithecus ("early man"); Homo habilis (the first to make tools), Pithecanthropus (discoverer of fire), Neanderthal and Cro-Magnon. The display also contains prehistoric art from France, Germany, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia and Denmark.

Quick Fact: According to Consumer Reports, there are 190 national or regional hotel chains in the United States, 60 of them less than 5 years old.

Berlin Air Lift: Lufthansa begins daily direct service from the United States to Berlin starting today when the historic first flight leaves Newark, N.J., for Schonefeld Airport in what used to be East Berlin.

As an incentive to travelers, Lufthansa is offering a promotional fare of $399 for the flight. The fare is good for travel beginning today and extending through Dec. 13. Tickets must be purchased by Nov. 30.

Myanmar, Ya'll?: The nation of Myanmar, better known by its former name of Burma, has opened its first tourist office anywhere in the world.

And where did the Myanmarese choose to put it? New York City? London? Sydney? Wrong on all three. Instead, the office is in that crossroads of the world, Durham, N.C., which just happens to be the home of its managing director.

To contact the office for information on travel to Myanmar--visas have recently been extended from one week to two--write to Myanmar National Tourist Office, 2514 University Drive, Durham, N.C. 27707, (919) 493-7500.

Quick Fact: People in Iceland live twice as long as people in Afghanistan.

Smokescreen: Apparently bowing to pressure from smokers, Lufthansa has decided not to ban smoking on its domestic flights as originally planned. The airline cited fear of clashes between militant smokers and nonsmokers for its change of mind.

Pointing out that federal lawmakers in Germany had failed to pass anti-smoking legislation, Lufthansa said banning smoking on its flights could lead to "polarization and confrontations among passengers."

The proposed ban, which Lufthansa earlier said was supported by 90% of those passengers it surveyed, was to have gone into effect today.

Quiz Answer: Lake Buena Vista, not Orlando as many people believe.

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