Princess Cruises Unveils Next Generation Ship

Introducing Sun Princess

Epic Sphere atrium, first-ever geodesic dome, innovative entertainment venues and premium suites headline the largest Princess ship ever built

Princess Cruises today unveiled details of its new and bespoke ship, Sun Princess. As the brand’s largest-ever ship, Sun Princess will accommodate 4,300 guests and boasts stunning views, innovative entertainment venues, multi-storey dining rooms and next level stateroom accommodations. Returning the venerable “Sun Princess” name back into operation, the ship remains true to the smooth clean lines and design aesthetics inspired by the Seawitch icon.

Rendering of Sun Princess (Courtesy of Princess Cruises)

Currently under construction at the Fincantieri shipyard and scheduled to debut in February 2024, the 175,500-tonne vessel is the largest Princess ship ever constructed and embraces Italian heritage by featuring the brand-iconic Piazza and new feature ‘The Dome’, a cutting-edge entertainment space inspired by the terraces of Santorini. Sun Princess will also feature the exclusive Princess Medallion that will extend Princess’ leadership position in delivering exceptional personalised experiences.  Princess is unique in the ability to deliver incredible cruise ship amenities typical of the largest ships in the world while delivering personalised service found on the industry’s smallest ships.

Sun Princess will sail an inaugural spring/summer season of Mediterranean cruises from February 2024 followed by Western and Eastern Caribbean voyages out of Port Everglades, Florida in autumn 2024.

“Sun Princess is a new and bespoke ship platform, designed to simultaneously embrace Princess heritage while boldly pressing into the future with iconic, elegant and pure lines unique to our brand,” said John Padgett, Princess Cruises president. “A show-stopping, first-of-its-kind Dome on the top deck and suspended glass Piazza in the centre of Sun Princess offer innovative designs showcasing expansive ocean views for incredible opportunities to connect with the sea.”

Innovative Guest Experience

Infused with light, the ship connects guests with dynamic views of the world and innovative experiences, with more than 29 dining and bar options. The line’s Piazza spans three storeys, forming an architectural feature offering guests an outward looking suspended space with comfortable seating and areas to enjoy the ocean views in every direction. An impressive LED screen is also showcased in the centre of the Piazza that can be moved and configured to deliver live entertainment programming. Adjacent to the Piazza atrium will be a new coffee shop, Coffee Currents, along with Princess favourites like Crooners Bar, Bellini’s Cocktail Bar, and Alfredo’s Pizzeria.

The other stand-out structure onboard Sun Princess is The Dome. Inspired by the terraces of Santorini, it is a multi-level covered deck and first-of-its-kind glass-enclosed dome to ever be constructed on a cruise ship. During the day, The Dome features an indoor/outdoor pool, and a unique water feature in a comfortable and relaxed space. At night, the pool becomes a stage, and The Dome completely transforms into an entertainment venue with a South Beach vibe, state-of-the-art lighting effects and the ability to deliver stunning aerial performances.

The ships overall interior design embraces the outside and celebrates the romance of the sea, offering outward views from morning to night. With brighter and lighter décor and finishes, Sun Princess delivers more memorable vantage points to take in the stunning destinations and ocean vistas that guests want to experience on a Princess cruise.

Newly Appointed Suites and Staterooms

With 2,157 total staterooms, including 50 suites and 100 connecting rooms, the 21-deck Sun Princess features more outdoor balcony space and all balcony accommodations feature an in-room sofa.

Also launching exclusively on Sun Princess will be a new level of suite accommodations, the Signature Collection. In addition to premium stateroom amenities, Signature Collection suites include access to the Signature Restaurant, Signature Lounge, and Signature Sun Deck, a private area of The Sanctuary.

Club Class accommodations onboard Sun Princess, and all other Princess ships, will now be called Reserve Collection, which are the best-located mini suite staterooms. Within the Reserve Collection will be Reserve Collection Cabana rooms, resort-style staterooms that offer a balcony and private cabana, an extra-large outdoor lounge space. These premium accommodations also include access to the Reserve Collection Restaurant.

In addition to the ship’s stunning design are the sustainable elements being engineered in the vessel. Sun Princess is part of Carnival Corporation’s green cruising focus and is one of 11 new ships in the corporate fleet powered by Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) technology.

The inaugural season for Sun Princess begins in February 2024 with Mediterranean itineraries. The ship’s first three voyages will go on sale at 00:01 on Friday, September 16.  Fares start from £1,789pp for a 10-night Grand Mediterranean voyage, departing 28 February 2024.

This is the third ship to be honoured with the Sun Princess name, adding to the legacy of the first ship sailing from 1974 to 1988 and the second ship sailing from 1995 to 2020. At that time, she had the largest number of balcony cabins, and the cruise line’s first 24-hour cafe.

About Princess Cruises

One of the best-known names in cruising, Princess Cruises is the world’s leading international premium cruise line and tour company operating a fleet of 15 modern cruise ships, carrying millions of guests each year to 330 destinations around the globe, including the Caribbean, Alaska, Panama Canal, Mexican Riviera, Europe, South America, Australia/New Zealand, the South Pacific, Hawaii, Asia, Canada/New England, Antarctica, and World Cruises. A team of professional destination experts have curated 170 itineraries, ranging in length from three to 111 days and Princess Cruises is continuously recognised as “Best Cruise Line for Itineraries.”  In 2017 Princess Cruises, with parent company Carnival Corporation, introduced MedallionClass Holidays enabled by the Medallion device, the travel industry’s most advanced wearable device, provided free to each guest sailing on a MedallionClass ship. The award-winning innovation offers the fastest way to an effortless personalised holiday, giving guests more time to do the things they love most. The company is part of Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE:CUK).      

In line with the latest advice from health officials about COVID-19, Princess Cruises is currently enhancing health and safety protocols with input from medical experts and government bodies and assessing how they may impact future itineraries. Actual offerings may vary from what is displayed in marketing materials. Click on the following links to stay updated oncurrent Cruise Updates and Health & Safety protocols.  

Thank you for taking the time to read my latest post, I plan to bring you more news on Sun Princess as is announced.

Norwegian Prima – UK debut in Pictures

Norwegian Cruise Lines newest ship Norwegian Prima made her UK debut when she arrived in the port of Southampton on 20th August.

Norwegian Prima is the first of 6 new “Prima-Class” cruise ships ordered from the Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri under the project name “Leonardo-Class”. Theses are the first ships for NCL that are being constructed by the Italian shipbuilder.

Norwegian Prima was handed over on the 8th August and left the shipyard a couple of days later, she made brief stops in Civitavecchia and Barcelona before making her arrival in Southampton early 20th August.

Below are a series of images from arrival to sailing during her visit to Southampton.

Arrival

Alongside the Horizon Cruise Terminal

Evening Departure

Check out my 4K arrival video

All images/Video © Andrew McAlpine

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Norwegian Viva Float out

LONDON (2nd August 2022) – Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL), the innovator in global cruise travel, today announced that Norwegian Viva, the second of six vessels in its ground-breaking Prima Class, floated out from her drydock at the Fincantieri shipyard in Marghera (Venice), Italy, marking a major construction milestone and the first time the new vessel touches water.

Images Courtesy of Camilla Bach / Fincantieri

To celebrate the occasion, a commemorative coin was welded into Norwegian Viva in a traditional maritime ceremony, presided over by Harry Sommer, president and chief executive officer of Norwegian Cruise Line and Antonio Quintano, shipyard director of Fincantieri.

Images Courtesy of Camilla Bach / Fincantieri

The float out signifies the completion of external works and painting of Norwegian Viva, including the striking hull artwork designed by Italian graffiti artist Manuel Di Rita, commonly known as “Peeta.” Construction now continues on Norwegian Viva’s interior fittings and guest accommodations before she is officially delivered to the cruise line and commences sailing in 2023.

“The float out of Norwegian Viva has been much anticipated and it’s an incredibly proud day for us all,” said Harry Sommer, president and chief executive officer of NCL. “As our nineteenth ship and the second in our innovative Prima Class, Norwegian Viva continues to represent our ongoing commitment to giving guests the best holiday experience imaginable. With Norwegian Viva’s name meaning “to be alive”, and her motto being ‘Live it Up’, we simply cannot wait to put this into practice and welcome guests on board soon for the vacation of a lifetime.”

Images Courtesy of Camilla Bach / Fincantieri

In 2019 Norwegian Cruise Line registered the following names for Prima Class: Aqua, Aura, Bella, Luna, Ombra, Ultima and Vela, the names Prima and Viva have already been used by the company.

NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE TAKES DELIVERY OF NORWEGIAN PRIMA

Cruise Line Welcomes First of Six Ships in Ground-Breaking Prima Class, the Brand’s Newest Class of Ships in Nearly a Decade

This highly anticipated milestone marks the arrival of the first ship in NCL’s Prima Class that will see six new ships delivered through 2027. Present at the landmark event was Frank Del Rio, president and chief executive officer of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd; Harry Sommer, president and chief executive officer of Norwegian Cruise Line; Luigi Matarazzo, general manager of the Merchant Ships Division of Fincantieri; as well as other notable NCLH and Fincantieri executives. The delivery celebration was followed by the traditional flag exchange ceremony.

Harry Sommer, president and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line said: “Today we usher in a thrilling new era in cruising as we celebrate the delivery of Norwegian Prima, the long-anticipated first ship in our extraordinary new Prima Class. She is a true testament to our Guest First philosophy as well as our commitment to deliver unforgettable experiences that exceed expectations. We thank our wonderful partners at Fincantieri, whose coveted craftsmanship, expertise, and dedication, helped bring Norwegian Prima to life. We cannot wait to welcome our guests on board.”

At 965 feet/294 m long, 142,500 gross tons and with capacity for 3,100 guests, Norwegian Prima is designed to put guests first. She features wide-open spaces, thoughtful and stunning design, and a variety of brand and industry-first experiences. She lays claim as the most spacious new cruise ship in the contemporary categories and offers the most outdoor deck space and expansive accommodations of any new build.  Her variety of elevated experiences and epicurean delights include the Brand’s first upscale open-air food hall, Indulge Food Hall; the largest and first three-level racetrack at sea on the Prima Speedway as well as The Drop, the world’s first freefall dry slide offering a 10-story plunge experience that reaches more G-forces than an accelerating F1 race car.

Other onboard standouts include Ocean Boulevard, which wraps around the entire deck; that’s over 44,000 square feet, allowing guests to connect to the ocean while enjoying alfresco dining and elevated experiences. Guests will enjoy the ultimate in relaxation via Infinity Beach, boasting two stunning infinity pools which are positioned close to water-level to take in the vastness of the ocean with uninterrupted views as well as Oceanwalk, where two glass bridges make guests feel as though they are walking on air over the water. An oasis for art lovers, Norwegian Prima will boast The Concourse, the first outdoor sculpture garden at sea with six installations created by international metal artist Alexander Krivosheiw and an art wall designed by David Harber.  

Luigi Matarazzo, general manager of the Merchant Ships Division of Fincantieri said: “We’re glad to work with Norwegian Cruise Line to create a world-class series of ships, and it’s a proud day seeing the first of the six Prima Class vessels delivered today. Norwegian Prima is packed with world-firsts, never-before-seen features, and extraordinary attractions you would never expect at sea”.

Launching this August, Norwegian Prima will be the first major cruise ship christened in Iceland, commencing her eight-day inaugural voyage in the Icelandic capital of Reykjavik on 27th August,2022, sailing to Amsterdam. Global popstar Katy Perry, who serves as Norwegian Prima’s Godmother, will fulfil the longstanding maritime tradition of blessing and officially naming the ship, as well as performing during the christening ceremony.

The second ship in the series Norwegian Viva is due to be floated out from the dry dock in the next few weeks.

Following her inaugural voyage, Norwegian Prima will sail a series of eight-day voyages from Amsterdam and Copenhagen offering guests the opportunity to explore Northern Europe and the Norwegian Fjords. She’ll then sail Bermuda from 10th October,2022; Caribbean itineraries from 15th October, 2022; and Western Caribbean voyages from 11th December , 2022 to 19th March 2023, before returning to Bermuda from 28th March to 7th May, 2023. She’ll then offer cruises to Northern Europe from 14th May through 17th September, 2023.

For more information about Norwegian Cruise Line ships and their itineraries, or to book a cruise, please contact a travel professional, call 0333 2412319 or visit www.ncl.com.

image courtesy of Fincantieri

Disney Wish Revealed

When the Disney Wish sets sail on 9 June, 2022, families will discover a mesmerising new world created especially for them: a celebration of Disney’s rich legacy of enchanting storytelling that brings to life the fantastical worlds and beloved characters at the heart of Disney, Pixar, Marvel and Star Wars adventures like never before. 

Families will embark on a splashtacular adventure with Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse aboard the first-ever Disney attraction at sea; revel in a royal celebration during a theatrical dining experience with “Frozen” friends; team up with the Avengers on a Marvel cinematic dining adventure; and travel to a galaxy far, far away in a first-of-its-kind Star Wars experience on board a Disney ship.

“With the Disney Wish, we’re continuing our tradition of delivering the most magical and relaxing holidays at sea, combining legendary service and entertainment with imaginative storytelling and all the care you expect from a Disney holiday,” said Josh D’Amaro, chairman, Disney Parks, Experiences and Products. “Our newest ship will celebrate everything that families love about sailing with us, from the incredible dining experiences and character interactions, to dazzling shows and the crew’s thoughtful attention to detail. We can’t wait to welcome our guests aboard the Disney Wish as we expand the reach of our world-class fleet.”

In keeping with the tradition started by Walt Disney Imagineers on the first ship Disney Magic the cartoon character Rapunzel will adorn the stern and add touch of magic to the luxury liner’s hull.

Wish Upon A Star

The Disney Wish will feature a brand-new, distinctly Disney design concept inspired by timeless tales of wishes come true. The motif of enchantment — a theme found at the heart of so many beloved Disney stories — will manifest in wondrous ways throughout the ship, from the magical forest setting of the Walt Disney Theatre to storybook-inspired staterooms to the fairytale castle-inspired Grand Hall, where a dazzling wishing star descends from the shimmering chandelier above.

“Daring to dream even bigger, our Imagineers are creating a breathtaking new world of enchantment aboard the Disney Wish,” said Laura Cabo, portfolio creative executive, Walt Disney Imagineering. “This motif provides the perfect platform to infuse Disney storytelling into every aspect of the design, giving the Disney Wish its own unique personality and a completely new look unlike anything else at sea.”

To “Swim”-finity and Beyond

Disney Cruise Line will take fun in the sun to the next level on board the Disney Wish with a brand-new family water attraction and three themed districts that offer dedicated space for families, children and adults alike.

Guests will be immersed in “The Wonderful World of Mickey Mouse” animated shorts aboard the first-ever Disney attraction at sea, AquaMouse. Complete with show scenes, lighting and special effects, and splashtacular surprises, this wild water ride is sure to delight everyone in the family as they zig, zag and zoom through 760 feet of winding tubes suspended high above the upper decks.

Families will have more pools, more deck space and more dining than ever before in an expansive district themed to Mickey and friends. In addition to AquaMouse, the area will feature six pools — spaciously staggered among tiered decks and surrounded by lounge chairs — and a fresh take on quick and casual fare with a festive character twist.

Little ones will delight in an all-new Toy Story-themed district designed especially for families with toddlers and young children. This whimsical water wonderland will include a splash zone, wading pool, family waterslide and smoothie bar.

Adults will indulge in sun-drenched serenity at Quiet Cove, a peaceful refuge dedicated to lounging and sipping on refreshing beverages. Set away from the bustle of family activities, this secluded adults-only district will feature a luxurious infinity pool, poolside bar and chic cafe.

Prepared and Served with Flair – A Culinary Cabaret

With the debut of three brand-new family dining concepts ranging from theatrical entertainment to cinematic adventure to sophisticated elegance, dinner on board the Disney Wish will be so much more than a meal – it will be a chance to interact with favourite Disney stories in exciting new ways that only Disney Cruise Line can cook up.

Arendelle: A Frozen Dining Adventure is Disney’s first “Frozen”-themed theatrical dining experience that will bring the world of Arendelle to life through immersive live entertainment — featuring favourite characters like Elsa, Anna, Kristoff and Olaf — and world-class cuisine infused with Nordic influences.

Worlds of Marvel is the first-ever Marvel cinematic dining adventure, where guests will play an interactive role in an action-packed Avengers mission that unfolds around them, complete with a worldly menu inspired by the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

1923, named for the year The Walt Disney Company was founded, is an elegant celebration of the company’s legacy, paying homage to the golden age of animation and offering a tasteful tribute to its Californian heritage with dishes inspired by the state’s unique fusion of cultural flavours.

In addition to elaborately themed, upscale restaurants, the Disney Wish will offer a variety of dining options ranging from quick bites, casual dining and 24-hour room service to specialty treats, gourmet cafes and premium dining exclusively for adults.

A Whole New World of Family Entertainment

Disney Cruise Line is combining innovative design and technology to create immersive entertainment environments that will surround guests in storytelling in new and unexpected ways on board the Disney Wish.

The Grand Hall will evolve from a fairytale gathering space into an environmental theatre through the magic of built-in special effects and the first-ever atrium stage on a Disney ship. Dedicated shows and interactive entertainment will come to life all around the hall, putting guests front and centre as they play a special role in the magic.

Luna is a brand-new entertainment hub that will transition from a daytime setting for family fun into an elegant evening venue for adult-exclusive entertainment, offering a variety of live shows and interactive programming throughout the day.

Hero Zone is a futuristic sports arena where physical activity will blend with imagination during action-packed challenges and game show-style competitions for families to take on together.

The Walt Disney Theatre is an opulent show palace that will come alive with original Broadway-style stage productions developed exclusively for Disney Cruise Line.

The Wonderland and Never Land Cinemas are intimate screening rooms that will provide guests more options than ever to watch classic and first-run films from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm and more.

In true Disney Cruise Line fashion, the Disney Wish will offer a robust menu of world-class entertainment throughout every voyage, including spectacular stage shows, exhilarating deck parties, one-of-a-kind character experiences, fun family activities, contemporary cabarets and more.

Imaginations, Assemble! Cool Clubs for Kids of All Ages

Aboard Disney Cruise Line, kids get to be the heroes of their own Disney stories. With dedicated clubs for every age group and imaginative programming facilitated with the care and expertise of Disney-trained counselors, children will be immersed in Disney storytelling on board the Disney Wish.

Children ages 3 to 12 will enter the captivating worlds of favourite Disney stories in the reimagined Disney’s Oceaneer Club, a real-life wonderland featuring more spaces and stories than ever before. Expertly developed programming combines deeply engaging, enriching activities with special playtime with Disney friends – and when characters stop by, they stay to play, offering uniquely interactive, memorable character experiences exclusive to Disney Cruise Line.

  • Marvel Super Hero Academy is a high-tech Avengers headquarters where young “recruits” will train to be the next generation of Super Heroes with the help of their own heroes, like Spider-Man, Black Panther, Ant-Man and the Wasp.
  • Fairytale Hall is a royal trio of activity rooms where princesses and princes will let their creativity shine at Rapunzel’s Art Studio, read and act out stories at Belle’s Library, and test newfound icy powers at Anna and Elsa’s Sommerhus.
  • Walt Disney Imagineering Lab is a first-of-its-kind opportunity for kids to discover the secrets of world-renowned Disney Imagineers — the creative masterminds behind Disney theme parks, resorts and cruise ships — with hands-on activities and inventive experiments.

For the littlest cruisers ages 6 months to 3 years, It’s a Small World Nursery will offer babysitting services in a whimsical environment inspired by the beloved Disney attraction of the same name.

Edge (ages 11 to 14) and Vibe (ages 14 to 17) are trendy hangouts where tweens and teens will chill and play in their own way, with dedicated programming designed to engage the unique interests of these age groups.

A Trove of Untold Treasures Exclusively for Adults

Adults aboard the Disney Wish will escape, relax, dine and play in more ways than ever with exclusive venues and entertainment tailored just for them, featuring elevated interpretations of Disney stories through sophisticated theming that ranges from subtle inspiration to full-scale immersion.

For the first time on a Disney ship, guests will embark on a space-jumping tour of the Star Wars galaxy at Star Wars: Hyperspace Lounge, a high-end bar styled as a luxurious yacht-class spaceship. This richly themed, immersive experience will be reserved for adults every evening, offering interactive tasting experiences and signature beverages inspired by destinations such as Batuu, Tatooine and Mustafar.

Aboard the Disney Wish, guests will savour gourmet meals and exceptional beverages at Palo SteakhouseEnchanté by Chef Arnaud Lallement and The Rose, an upscale suite of epicurean excellence exclusively for adults, inspired by the elegant icons of Walt Disney Animation Studios’ “Beauty and the Beast.”

  • Palo Steakhouse is an evolution of the Palo restaurant that Disney cruisers know and love, now combining the relaxed sophistication of authentic Italian dining with the classic refinement of a modern steakhouse in a genteel setting inspired by Cogsworth, the tale’s majordomo-turned-enchanted-clock.
  • Enchanté by Chef Arnaud Lallement will offer the most luxurious dining experience on board, featuring a gourmet menu crafted by three-Michelin-starred Chef Arnaud Lallement. This romantic and intimate venue will evoke the dazzling spirit of the film’s candelabra maitre d’, Lumiere. 
  • The Rose is a chic lounge at the entrance of Palo Steakhouse and Enchanté by Chef Arnaud Lallement. Inspired by the fateful flower at the heart of the story, The Rose will be an idyllic setting for a pre-dinner aperitif or after-dinner cocktail.

Senses Spa is a tranquil oasis offering indulgent spa and beauty treatments, drawing on the serenity of natural elements to promote pampering and relaxation. The spa will feature private treatment rooms, lavish spa villas, and steam and aromatherapy rooms, while the reimagined Senses Fitness will offer state-of-the-art exercise and wellness facilities. 

Other adult-exclusive spaces on board the Disney Wish will include the Quiet Cove pool district; a variety of gourmet cafes, relaxed bars and upscale lounges; and more.

Artful Accommodations Where Dreams Do Come True

With an all-new look and feel steeped in enchantment and inspired by dreamy Disney stories, every stateroom on board the Disney Wish will be a luxurious, peaceful retreat designed with ample room for families, plenty of storage and upscale amenities. Most will feature Disney Cruise Line’s signature split-bathroom concept for utmost comfort and function.

Most of the ship’s 1,254 staterooms will offer an ocean view — including 877 (70%) with a spacious verandah — and there will be 451 connecting doors that adjoin rooms to accommodate larger families.

The Disney Wish will elevate the concierge experience with more than double the number of premium concierge staterooms and suites, including Disney’s first-ever staterooms located above the bridge, boasting floor-to-ceiling windows that reveal breath-taking ocean views overlooking the bow of the ship. An exclusive lounge with private sun deck will be the perfect place for concierge guests to relax, sip a cocktail and enjoy a premium level of dedicated service throughout the voyage.

The Disney Wish will also debut four royal suites – richly adorned, lavishly appointed suites that accommodate up to six guests and feature extravagant details and first-class amenities. These include a pair of two-story suites, the first of their kind within the Disney fleet, which will feature stunning statement pieces like an elegant spiral staircase and a spectacular two-deck-high stained-glass frieze.

Into the Unknown – Expanding the Disney Cruise Line Fleet

The Disney Wish is the first of three new Disney Cruise Line ships to be built at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Germany through 2025. All three ships will be powered by liquefied natural gas and, at approximately 144,000 gross tons, will be slightly larger than the Disney Dream and Disney Fantasy. 

The Disney Wish will sail its maiden voyage — a five-night cruise to Nassau, Bahamas, and Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay — on 9 June, 2022, followed by an inaugural season of three- and four-night cruises to the same destinations from Port Canaveral, Florida. Bookings open to the general public on 27 May, 2021.

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Welcome Celebrity Beyond

CELEBRITY CRUISES’ NEWEST SHIP, CELEBRITY BEYOND, DEFIES IMAGINATION, WONDER AND LUXURY

Yesterday, Celebrity Cruises President and CEO Lisa Lutoff-Perlo unveiled the company’s third ship in the company’s industry-transforming “new luxury” Edge SeriesCelebrity Beyond. Designed to give guests endless opportunities to disconnect from the world — while simultaneously reconnecting with the world that surrounds them — Celebrity Beyond goes further than imagined possible for a cruise ship, creating a new world of wonder and luxury.  

You can watch the full reveal here:

Inspired by a vision to take the cruise industry into the next era of luxury, Lutoff-Perlo assembled a dream team of modern lifestyle icons to bring to life extraordinary experiences that allow guests to connect with each other, the sea, and their journey. Celebrity Beyond showcases the design talents of multi-award-winning British designer Kelly Hoppen CBE; celebrated American designer Nate Berkus; and lauded Paris-based design firm Jouin Manku; the innovation of British architect Tom Wright; and the culinary gifts of Michelin-starred chef and restaurateur Daniel Boulud. The ship will also feature experiences and products from goop CEO and founder Gwyneth Paltrow, the brand’s new Well-Being Advisor.  

Redefining luxury again, Celebrity Beyond builds on the features and design of its award-winning predecessors Celebrity Edge (2018) and Celebrity Apex(2020) by creating innovative spaces that set the brand apart from others in the industry. Every element of Celebrity Beyond’s look and feel has been carefully curated with re-imagined spaces and more luxurious versions of the brand’s most popular signature spaces, including:

  • The Retreat®, an exclusive resort-within-a-resort area for suite guests, highlighted by a new two-story sundeck;
  • Transformed accommodations from modern two-story villas with private plunge pools to staterooms with infinite verandas, blurring the boundaries between indoor and outdoor living; 
  • An expanded Rooftop Garden and stunning Resort Deck featuring unique cantilevered float pools;
  • A multi-level, multi-terraced Sunset Bar redefining the ship’s aft;
  • A first-ever Daniel Boulud fine-dining restaurant at sea; 
  • A boldly redesigned Grand Plaza spanning three decks, creating an airy and open indoor space;

And, the return of the  Magic Carpet®, an engineering feat soaring cantilevered above the sea, offering guests uninterrupted vistas while sipping cocktails or having dinner.

“Celebrity Cruises has always been an innovator at sea, and now we have challenged the status quo with a vessel that goes beyond expectations, beyond imagination,” said Lutoff-Perlo. “Celebrity Beyond shatters any and every preconceived notion of the cruising experience. This exquisite ship offers a journey at the intersection of elegance and approachability filled with what’s important to our guests today: forward-thinking design, culinary excellence, unparalleled well-being and incomparable service.” 

The Retreat: A Resort In and of Itself 
One of the most sought-after interior designers in the world, Kelly Hoppen CBE, has reimagined aspects of the design for The Retreat, the unrivaled and exclusive resort space for suite guests, including all new suites, and brought her globally renowned style to outdoor venues such as the Rooftop Garden and the main pool area on the Resort Deck.

The new, two-story Retreat Sundeck will offer more unadulterated outdoor bliss and ways to rejuvenate in the fresh ocean air with secluded cabanas, chic new seating areas, additional water features and the exclusive Retreat Bar. The warm and inviting Retreat Lounge is a newly stylish space to unwind; while Hoppen’s new take on the adjacent private restaurant Luminae, now at the front of the ship, becomes a space where every corner provides a new experience with each visit, in keeping with the daily changing menu.   

An array of contemporary suite accommodations featuring fresh colour palettes and design details by Hoppen await guests of The Retreat, including the redesigned two-story Edge Villas with outdoor plunge pools, and Celebrity’s famous Iconic Suites, the largest in the fleet, offering better views than the captain’s quarters.

Connecting Two Worlds
Nowhere is more rejuvenating than the open sea, and Celebrity Beyond ensures guests are able to take full advantage of both the luxurious design of the ship while soaking in the world around them. 

Perhaps best known for designing the world-famous Burj Al Arab Hotel, lead architect Tom Wright of WKK has expanded the exterior spaces on Celebrity Beyond, transforming them into serene outward-facing sanctuaries leveraging endless ocean vistas and breath-taking panoramas of the extraordinary places the ship will visit. His design both lengthens the ship by 20 meters and raises the ship to 17 decks tall, allowing for the reimagination of The Retreat, the Resort Deck, and the Rooftop Garden – outdoor spaces increasingly important to today’s traveler. 

The main open deck, 40 percent larger than on previous Edge Series ships, features an enormous living Rooftop Garden designed by Hoppen and includes increased seating offering new private nooks and more spaces for movie watching, enjoying live music and outdoor dining at the expanded Rooftop Grill. A highlight of this area is Wright’s incorporation of two spectacular floating pools cantilevered six and a half feet over the side of the ship, taking guests beyond the water’s edge

On the Resort Deck, guests will enjoy a stunning asymmetrical space with a 25-yard lap pool surrounded by a terraced pool deck and new sunken seating areas designed by Hoppen. 

Wright also designed the signature Edge Series Magic Carpet, a tennis-court sized cantilevered platform that scales the side of the ship and transforms from open-air lounge or restaurant hovering above the ocean along higher decks to a tender platform for going ashore on lower decks.  Featured on Celebrity Beyond, it debuted on Celebrity Edge in 2018 and is still considered one of the most unique design innovations ever for a cruise ship. 
Celebrity Cruises’ Edge Series Design Ambassador Nate Berkus stepped into the role of designer himself, to imagine one of the most anticipated venues on Celebrity Beyond – the Sunset Bar.

Inside space that is nearly twice as large as previous iterations, Berkus has created a chic, Moroccan-inspired escape that is reminiscent of a modern-day Casablanca. 

Guests will enter through a pergola-covered entrance to enjoy one of the hottest spots at sea. With more conversation niches and covered enclaves to allow guests to connect in a more intimate way, the Sunset Bar’s cascading terraces will combine to provide the perfect place to soak in spectacular views and create unforgettable memories. 

Luxury in Every Detail

The core of Celebrity Beyond’s vision of luxury is the Grand Plaza, a transformational place at the center of the ship designed by Jouin Manku — the team responsible for designing the Jules Verne restaurant in the Eiffel Tower — and offering a different experience with every visit. Inspired by the piazzas of Italy that serve as life centers of towns where architecture and social connection become one, the Grand Plaza spans three decks at the heart of the ship, boldly declaring it is the place to see and be seen.  

Larger than Grand Plazas on its sister Edge Series ships, the Celebrity Beyond Grand Plaza has an airier atmosphere with more room for intimate seating. The added space allowed designers to move the Martini Bar into the center of the venue as a full, circular bar.

Hanging proudly above the new Martini Bar, the Grand Plaza’s iconic chandelier boasts a new, organic shape with hundreds of individual LED lights that cast an inviting glow at all hours—taking center stage with talented bartenders at night during their exciting and theatrical Flash Flair Fusion performance. 

Connected to the Grand Plaza is the top table of culinary excellence at sea, the new, intimate 50-seat restaurant by world-renowned chef Daniel Boulud. Aptly named Le Voyage, travel is the inspiration for the globally inspired flavors within, designed to transport guests to the very places that inspire the Michelin-rated chef. Complementing the menu, world-class sommeliers will pair the perfect wine with every dish from Celebrity Cruises’ “most awarded” wine collection at sea. 

Complementing Chef Boulud’s world-class menu is the restaurant’s ambiance, which is also the result of Jouin Manku’s creative talents. Intimate seating cocoons are surrounded by luminous portals highlighting the themes of journey and travel, while graphically lit “glass flutes” provide layers of light and texture to create an enchanting experience. 

Providing a sense of occasion and flow, the Le Voyage experience begins with a dedicated entrance and concludes with a customized sweet prepared in Daniel’s own farewell boutique as guests are wished ‘au revoir.’ 

Rethinking Wellness at Sea

Luxury didn’t stop at the architectural design and culinary experience, but extended into how Celebrity Cruises thought of wellness on Celebrity Beyond. New to the ship are AquaClass SkySuites, an immersive living experience that helps guests find their center. From floor-to-ceiling ocean views, private verandas, luxurious bedding and other wellness amenities, Celebrity Beyond has thought of everything to nourish its guests’ mind, body, and spirit on vacation.

Celebrity Beyond also sets sail with a new partnership with actress and entrepreneur Gwyneth Paltrow, serving as the line’s new Well-being Advisor. All Aqua Class guests across the entire Celebrity Cruises fleet (excluding Galapagos sailings) will be treated to onboard wellness offerings, including fitness kits from Paltrow’s modern lifestyle brand goop, aimed at enhancing self-care and collective well-being. Paltrow and her team at goop will also curate onboard wellness programming and participate in the line’s new Women in Wellness initiative. 

Welcome Beyond

Celebrity Beyond will depart on her maiden voyage on April 27, 2022 from Southampton, England, on a 10-night Western Europe cruise visiting Bordeaux, France; Lisbon, Portugal; and Seville, Malaga, Palma de Mallorca and Barcelona, Spain. She will then offer a variety of Mediterranean journeys including nine-night Italian Riviera and France itineraries and 10-night Greek Isles itineraries through early October, when she then heads to the Caribbean. Voyages are on sale as of April 28, 2021 at 3p.m. ET.

For more information on all of Celebrity Beyond’s inaugural 2022-2023 sailings, visit https://www.celebritycruises.com/cruise-ships/celebrity-beyond


Like her industry-changing sister ships, Celebrity Edge and Celebrity Apex, the former of which was named one of TIME Magazine’s “World’s Greatest Places” following her 2018 debut season, Celebrity Beyond will connect guests to the breath-taking world around them like never before. Celebrity Cruises’ onboard and onshore experiences stand it apart as a new luxury travel brand without comparison. For more information on all Celebrity Cruises’ offerings and to book the vacation of a lifetime, visit http://www.celebritycruises.com.

Thank you for taking the time to read my latest blog post.

Disney Cruise Line Announces Disney Magic Staycation Itineraries for Summer 2021 UK Sailings

Yesterday, Disney Cruise Line released the eagerly awaited itineraries for the Disney Magic at sea staycation sailings. These limited sailings will allow U.K. residents to experiance the magic of Disney Cruise Line much closer to home than usual.

According to the cruise line these new staycation sailings will be limited to U.K residents only and feature multiple layers of health and safety measures considering the guidance from the UK government, health authorities and medical experts.

Disney Magic is scheduled to sail a variety of itineraries which include 2 and 3 night voyages, as well as a limited number of 4-night round-trip sailings from Tilbury, Newcastle, Liverpool and Southampton.

When to Book

As yet no prices have been announced but advance bookings open from 14th April for Castaway Club members with bookings open from 19th April for the general pubic.

14th April 2021: Platinum Members (By Phone Only)

15th April 2021: Platinum and Gold Members (By Phone Only)

16th April 2021: Platinum, Gold and Silver Members (By Phone Only)

19th April 2021: All Guests (By Phone and Online)

Disney Magic at Sea Summer 2021 Sailings

London Tilbury, England

Situated on the north shore of the River Thames, Tilbury (aka ‘the quay to the capital’) is less than 30 miles away from the iconic sights and sounds of London. Depart on 2- and 3-night cruises on selected dates from 11th June – 25th June.

2-Night Disney Magic at Sea UK Staycation Sailing from London Tilbury:
14th June, 16th June, 21st June, 23rd June

Day 1: Departure from Tilbury (London), England
Day 2: At Sea
Day 3: Return to Tilbury (London), England

3-Night Disney Magic at Sea UK Staycation Sailing from London Tilbury:
11th June, 18th June, 25th June

Day 1: Departure from Tilbury (London), England
Day 2: At Sea
Day 3: At Sea
Day 4: Return to Tilbury (London), England


Newcastle, England

From its engineering marvels to its scenic gardens, Newcastle is one of England’s greatest cultural centers, and easy to reach from Glasgow and Edinburgh. Depart on 2- and 3-night cruises on selected dates from 29th June – 9th July.

2-Night Disney Magic at Sea UK Staycation Sailing from Newcastle:
5th July, 7th July, 9th July

Day 1: Departure from Newcastle, England
Day 2: At Sea
Day 3: Return to Newcastle, England

3-Night Disney Magic at Sea UK Staycation Sailing from Newcastle:
29th June, 2nd July

Day 1: Departure from Newcastle, England
Day 2: At Sea
Day 3: At Sea
Day 4: Return to Newcastle, England


Liverpool, England

With convenient transportation links, Liverpool is known for its historic sites, celebrated architecture, fabulous food and rock and roll! Depart on 2-, 3- and limited 4-night cruises on selected dates from 13th July – 30th July.

2-Night Disney Magic at Sea UK Staycation Sailing from Liverpool:
13th July, 18th July

Day 1: Departure from Liverpool, England
Day 2: At Sea
Day 3: Return to Liverpool, England

3-Night Disney Magic at Sea UK Staycation Sailing from Liverpool:
15th July, 20th July, 27th July, 30th July

Day 1: Departure from Liverpool, England
Day 2: At Sea
Day 3: At Sea
Day 4: Return to Liverpool, England

4-Night Disney Magic at Sea UK Staycation Sailing from Liverpool:
23rd July

Day 1: Departure from Liverpool, England
Day 2: At Sea
Day 3: At Sea
Day 4: At Sea
Day 5: Return to Liverpool, England


Southampton, England

One of England’s major ports, Southampton has been called Britain’s “Gateway to the World” and offers everything from a fascinating history to modern art. Depart on 2-, 3- and limited 4-night cruises on selected dates from 4th August to 1st September.

2-Night Disney Magic at Sea UK Staycation Sailing from Southampton:
4th August, 16th August, 18th August, 30th August, 1st September

Day 1: Departure from Southampton, England
Day 2: At Sea
Day 3: Return to Southampton, England

3-Night Disney Magic at Sea UK Staycation Sailing from Southampton:
6th August, 13th August, 20th August, 27th August

Day 1: Departure from Southampton, England
Day 2: At Sea
Day 3: At Sea
Day 4: Return to Southampton, England

4-Night Disney Magic at Sea UK Staycation Sailing from Southampton:
9th August, 23rd August

Day 1: Departure from Southampton, England
Day 2: At Sea
Day 3: At Sea
Day 4: At Sea
Day 5: Return to Southampton, England

I will update this post as soon as further information becomes availble.

In the meantime would love to know if you will you be booking so drop me a comment below.

As always thank you for taking the time to read my latest post

Disney Fantasy makes her maiden call to Southampton

Since the pause in global cruise operations my home port of Southampton has played host to a variety of different cruise ships that would not visit under normal circumstances, and this week saw another one of the most notable visits.

Disney Cruise Line’s 2012 built Disney Fantasy made a maiden call to the port arriving just before daybreak 18th November, becoming the first Disney line ship to visit Southampton since her fleet mate Disney Wonder in July 1999.

Disney Fantasy passing Mayflower Park

The fourth ship in the current fleet Disney Fantasy was built in Papenburg, Germany by the renowned cruiseship builder Meyer Werft. She is the second two Dream-Class ships and has a length of 340m, gross tonnage of 129,750 tonnes and features 1,250 passenger cabins.

Early morning arrival

The brief visit to Southampton was to take on stores and fuel before she sailed across the Atlantic to Port Canaveral, Florida her usual homeport.

The ship had arrived from the french port of Brest where she and undergone a brief drydocking together with the other ships in the fleet. During this visit history was made as on 14th October all four Disney ships were in port together for the first time.

DCL Fleet Brest France MarineTraffic Map 20201004
Image Courtesy of the DCL Blog/Marine Traffic
Alongside the City Cruise Termial (101 berth)

Check out this wonderful image from onboard by crew member Catherine. Shortly after after Fantasy arrived a rainbow appeared over the port, perhaps to celebrate Micky’s birthday which was on the same day!

© catherine_278_ (Instagram)

Be sure to check out catherine_278_ Instagram page (link below) for wonderful onboard and at sea images. A big thank you to Catherine for allowing me to share the image here.

https://www.instagram.com/catherine_278_/

Following her brief stay Disney Fantasy sailed just after 4pm local time, there were plenty of people in Mayflower Park to see her sail despite the showers! Check out the departure images below.

As always thank you for taking the time to read my latest post and be sure to look out for my departure video coming soon on YouTube!

All images copyright Andrew McAlpine unless otherwise stated

CELEBRITY CRUISES ANNOUNCES NEW, WONDER-FILLED SAILINGS FORWINTER 2021-2022

Award-Winning Line Adds New Itineraries, New Ports of Call in the
Caribbean, Europe and South America

Celebrity Cruises 2021-2022 Sailings

MIAMI – Nov. 17, 2020 – Today, Celebrity Cruises announced its updated 2021-2022 winter sailings programme for the Caribbean, Europe and South America. The new offerings, informed by market research and valuable feedback from guests and travel partners, are highlighted by an expanded Caribbean presence with new seven-night and overnight itineraries; new Spain and Portugal itineraries in Europe; and an exciting new homeport and new shorter itineraries in South America.  

The new sailings further complement Celebrity’s award-winning itineraries, curated to feature the world’s most beautiful places and create memories that last long after each destination has sailed out of view. 

And, because holidays should be effortless from the start, Wi-Fi, drinks and tips are now ‘Always IncludedSM’ on every Celebrity cruise, simplifying the luxury holiday experience. 

The Caribbean 

Eight of Celebrity’s award-winning ships will sail the sun-drenched tropics, including its newest Edge Series ships, Celebrity Edge and brand-new sister ship Celebrity Apex – known for being destinations in their own right. Altogether, these Celebrity ships offer a variety of exciting itineraries, from shorter escapes that are perfect for romantic getaways to more immersive sailings that allow extra time to unwind in paradise and enjoy Celebrity’s luxurious ships. 

  • Celebrity Edge will offer a full winter season of seven-night Caribbean itineraries to both the Eastern and Western Caribbean.
  • Celebrity Silhouette, which recently enjoyed a multi-million dollar upgrade as part of the fleet’s transformative Celebrity Revolution® will sail new Southern Caribbean itineraries featuring overnights in Aruba and Curaçao. 
  • Another “revolutionised” ship, Celebrity Summit, will replace Celebrity Infinity to sail four- and five-night itineraries from Miami plus two new Mexico holiday sailings in December, 2021.
                                                                             

Europe

Celebrity Infinity will offer new ways to experience the beauty of Europe next Autumn, by extending its season into October and November:

  • The award-winning Celebrity Infinity sails the Mediterranean from the home port of Lisbon, Portugal and adds a new 10-night “Best of Spain and Portugal” and two new seven-night Iberian Peninsula sailings visiting such beautiful coastal destinations as Palma de Mallorca, Seville, Alicante and Malaga in Spain; and Porto, Portugal. She then embarks on her new 12-night transatlantic from Lisbon to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, visiting ports of call in Spain and the Canary Islands.

South America

Beginning in December 2021 until March 2022, Celebrity Infinity will explore the exciting continent of South America from the towering Fjords of Chile to the tropical beaches and rain forests of Brazil to the tip of Antarctica. With a new homeport, Valparaiso, Chile, known as “Little San Francisco” for its rich theatre, music and street art scene, the all-new schedule features:

  • Four new nine- to 12-night itineraries calling on ports throughout the stunning landscapes of Argentina and Patagonia, or the exciting cityscapes found in Argentina and Brazil.
  • One new 14-night sailing to the ever-popular, bucket-list destination of Antarctica, for a total of three sailings to a part of the world revered by history’s greatest explorers. 

Celebrity Cruises is applying the recommendations of its Healthy Sail Panel of public health and scientific experts to ensure a safer and healthier cruise holiday on all of its sailings.  For more information on the latest health and travel advice, please visit www.celebritycruises/travel-alert.

To learn more about Celebrity’s Winter 2021-2022 sailings, visit http://www.celebritycruises.co.uk/new-cruises. For more information on all Celebrity Cruises offerings, call 0344 493 2093, visit www.celebritycruises.co.uk, or speak with a travel advisor.

Celebrity Apex seen in Southampton earlier this year

MSC World Europa reaches key construction milestone

MSC CRUISES AND CHANTIERS DE L’ATLANTIQUE CELEBRATE KEY CONSTRUCTION MILESTONE FOR LNG-PROPELLED MSC WORLD EUROPA

New rendering of MSC World Europa the first World Class Cruise ship for MSC Cruises.
New rendering of MSC World Europa Image: MSC Cruises

MSC World Europa to become one of the most technologically- and environmentally-advanced LNG ships in its class

Geneva, Switzerland and Saint-Nazaire, France, 29 June 2020 – A maritime coin ceremony tradition took place earlier today at the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France when the keel was laid for MSC Cruises’ first liquified natural gas (LNG)-powered ship, MSC World Europa.

Keel laying Iof MSC World Europa at Chantiers de l’Atlantique, Saint Nazaire France.
Keel laying Image: Chantiers de l’Atlantique

The 200,000-plus GT ship is scheduled to enter service in 2022 and be one of most technologically- and environmentally-advanced LNG-powered cruise vessels in its class, and the first ever to be built in France. 

Zoe Africa Vago, daughter of Alexa Aponte-Vago and her husband Pierfrancesco Vago, MSC Cruises’ Executive Chairman, and Aurore Bezard from the HR Department of Chantiers de I’Atlantique performed the traditional maritime ritual as godmothers representing the ship owner and the shipbuilder when they placed two coins under the keel as the historical sign of blessing and good fortune for the project, and the ship’s operational life at sea.

Pierfrancesco Vago, Executive Chairman, MSC Cruises, said: “MSC World Europa is further proof of our commitment to environmental stewardship as she is set to reduce carbon emissions even further than many other existing cruise ships powered by LNG, which is currently the most environmentally-friendly fuel for commercial maritime operations. With this vessel, we also reconfirm our belief in investing in advanced environmental technology to meet our long-term goal of zero emissions from operations.”

Laurent Castaing, General Manager, Chantiers de l’Atlantique, added: “We are proud to start the building of a ship which will set the standards for the cruise of the future. This is a major milestone in the history of our 20-year cooperation with MSC Cruises, which has already resulted in some of the most innovative cruise ships ever built.”

MSC World Europa will feature a new 50-kilowatt demonstrator system that incorporates solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) technology and use LNG to produce electricity and heat on board, the first time an LNG-powered fuel cell has been used on a cruise ship. 

The (SOFC) system has been developed by French research centre CEA as part of MSC Cruises’ and Chantiers de l’Atlantique’s PACBOAT project. France-based contractor Entrepose Group will design and build the demonstrator, which will be approved by classification society Bureau Veritas.

This SOFC solution fuelled by LNG will reduce emissions of greenhouse gases (GHG) by about 30 per cent compared with a conventional LNG engine, with no emissions of nitrogen oxides, sulphur oxides or fine particles.  It also  offers the advantage of being compatible with LNG, as well as several low carbon fuels  such as types of methanol, ammonia and hydrogen.

MSC World Europa will also feature a new generation wastewater treatment system that exceeds some of the world’s most stringent regulatory standards, as well other cutting-edge environmental technology.

Rendering of MSC World Europa the first World Class Cruise ship for MSC Cruises.
Rendering of MSC World Europa Image: MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises’ next flagship MSC Virtuosa is currently under construction in Saint-Nazaire and readying for delivery next year. The Company also has firm orders with Chantiers de l’Atlantique for two additional LNG-powered ships, once each for the MSC World and Meraviglia classes of ships.

Thank you for taking the time to read my latest post.