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The Tesco supermarket chain in Britain has a new preferred customer - one who thinks nothing of dropping $14,400 on a single grocery order without even setting foot on the premises. She is Queen Elizabeth II. It seems the monarch used to give members of her staff fruit puddings from Harrods upscale department store as Christmas presents, but decided to go the economy route this year. So, in her name, 1,411 of Tesco's "Finest Matured" puddings were bought for the big day. The queen's own pudding will come from the kitchen of her Sandringham residence.

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Undoubtedly, the two matters aren't at all related, but the queen seems to have lost her place as Britain's wealthiest person. A new survey by the magazine EuroBusiness puts auto-racing champion Bernie Ecclestone's fortune at $3.8 billion, to the monarch's $3.2 billion. Europe-wide, however, they rank only 48th and 60th, respectively.

What travelers hope for in hotel rooms of the future

In a recent survey conducted by Opinion Research Corp. International for Kimberly-Clark Corp., respondents ranked which of a number of innovations they would most like to see in hotel and motel rooms. Among those who travel for business purposes, the top priority was a computer with Internet access and printer. Those expecting to travel for pleasure were most interested in Jacuzzis. The top four choices for each group and the percentage of respondents preferring each:

Business travelers

1. Computer/printer 59%

2. "Smart" phone (with caller ID and e-mail) 13

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3. In-room exercise facilities 11

4. Conference room off guest room (for meetings) 4

Other travelers

1. Jacuzzi in bathroom 22%

2. A code (not key or entry card) for room access 14

3. Home theater/video library 13

4. Spa services, such as massages on demand 11

- PR Newswire

(c) Copyright 1999. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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