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Applies to first-class and business travelers

PAPEÉTE, Tahiti (Tahitipresse, Nov. 3, 2008) - Air Tahiti Nui is celebrating 10 years of flying by treating each passenger to a free Tahitian cultured pearl from Robert Wan, the famous "pearl emperor" of French Polynesia.

As a 10th anniversary gesture, available until January 15, Air Tahiti Nui is presenting each first and business class passenger with a sealed envelope containing a Robert Wan pearl. Economy class passengers are receiving a gift certificate to redeem their free pearl at one of seven Robert Wan jewelry boutiques in French Polynesia, an airline spokesman confirmed.

The offer, which began in October, applies to all Air Tahiti Nui flights arriving in Tahiti from Los Angeles, Tokyo, Sydney and Auckland. The pearls and pearl certificates are presented after the flights arrive in Tahiti, the spokesman said.

"The Tahitian pearl is a symbol of beauty and perfection which represents the way we feel about Tahiti, our home, and one of the world’s most aspirational holiday destinations," said Craig Lee, the airline’s regional director in Australia. "This iconic gift is our way of thanking passengers for their support and helping to remind them of their time in Tahiti."

Wan began pearl farming in 1973. His first official client was Japan’s pearl master Mikimoto. Wan now is one of the most experienced and acclaimed producers of the Tahitian cultured pearl, often called the Black Pearl, or "Poe Rava" in Tahitian, the same name given to Air Tahiti Nui’s first and business class cabins.

Air Tahiti Nui officially celebrates its 10th anniversary on November 20, the day in 1998 when its first flight went from Tahiti to Los Angeles.

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