VIRGIN VOYAGES EXPANDS EPIC ENTERTAINMENT LINEUP

London – 21 May 2019,17:25 GMT– Today, Virgin Voyages announces a series of exciting updates for its irresistible 2020 sailings. 

Expanded Partnership with Mark Ronson

With a heritage deeply rooted in music, Virgin Voyages announced an expanded partnership with Academy, Grammy and Golden Globe-winning artist and producer Mark Ronson. Ronson will join the company’s Creative Collective, a group of world-class tastemakers, artists and designers who are collaborating with Virgin Voyages to bring epic Sailor experiences to sea. In his role as the company’s “Minister of Music,” Ronson will be creating a series of pre-voyage and onboard playlists for Sailors, as well as curating the vinyl record selection in the RockStar Suites and the ship’s vinyl and music shop – Voyage Vinyl. What’s more, Ronson will be working with Virgin Voyages’ music teams, defining the brand’s sound at sea as well as at The Beach Club in Bimini, Bahamas– a private and luxurious beach club that is exclusively for Virgin Voyages Sailors while Scarlet Lady is on island.

As a part of Virgin Voyages’ On Deck residency program, Ronson has committed to four performances at The Beach Club at Bimini in 2020. Ronson’s July 9 poolside performance can only be experienced by those who book the July 5, 2020Mayan Sol sailing featuring stops in Costa Maya, Mexico and Bimini, Bahamas. 

 

“I’m thrilled to be part of the Virgin Voyages’ Creative Collective, helping lead the charge in music. Sir Richard Branson and the Virgin brand were legendary game-changers in the music industry and it’s a thrill to join them as they bring that same spirit to sea travel,” Ronson said.

 

“We see music as an essential element to a holiday, not just for parties but also as the soundtrack to laughter, relaxation and much more,” said Tom McAlpin, president and CEO for Virgin Voyages. “It’s an honour to have an outstanding artist like Mark Ronson helping us develop our Sailor experience, alongside an exciting lineup of DJ’s joining our On Deck residency program.” 

Diplo Joins On Deck Residency Program

Continuing the expansion of its On Deck residency program, Virgin Voyages also announced that legendary DJ and record producer, Diplo, will perform at the Beach Club in 2020. 

 

Virgin Voyages will carefully curate the mood at The Beach Club so that Sailors have opportunities to experience moments of relaxation and serenity as well as high-energy excitement. Mornings at the private club will begin with yoga and meditation, with the energy gradually amplified as the day progresses, reaching a crescendo of action in the afternoon where DJ-led pool and floatilla parties will be the centre of the club. The day will cascade into night with a calming fire ritual where Sailors will enjoy acoustic tunes over an open bonfire.

Scarlet Night- A Party to Remember 

Scarlet Night is another occasion set to prove a highlight for Sailors, as Virgin Voyages reveals details of one its signature onboard parties, which will take Sailors on a journey around Scarlet Lady. Conceived, designed and produced by the  award-winning producer behind Sleep No More, Queen of the Night, and The Donkey Show, Randy Weiner, Scarlet Night is a glamorous occasion of awe and mystique that pushes the boundaries of entertainment. Groundbreaking music will set the mood, as Sailors dance the night away at this out of this world experience, complete with art installations and performances throughout the ship as the night progresses. There will also be an after party created by Brooklyn, New York’s House of Yes, recently named the number two Best Thing To Do in the World by Time Out, and known for their theatre-infused nightclub where a fabulous outfit  is a must and guests expect the unexpected, including circus spectacles, immersive cinema, cabaret performances  and beyond. 

Scarlet Night comes to London

Londoners will experience a taste of Scarlet Night on Tuesday 21 May, as the event comes from sea to land for one night only. The event will bring to life the energy of Scarlet Night with extraordinary music and performances along with a featured guest performance from Mark Ronson. The special event is set to be attended by VIPs, celebrities and more the likes of whom include Geri Horner and Holly Branson, among others. 

 

Ladyship Touring UK Waters

There’s good news for budding travel advisors, whom the company affectionately refers to as First Mates – the Scarlet Lady, glamorously designed cabins and boasting over 20+ eateries, will be stopping in Dover and Liverpool in late February opening its doors to First Mates, media and VIPs, hosting a number of exclusive events before making her way across the pond to her new home of Miami. The news was announced by Geri Horner at the Scarlet Night London press conference today. 

 

Future sailors and travel partners are invited to check out Virgin Voyages by visiting www.virginvoyages.com.

All images courtesy of Virgin Voyages

Celebrity Edge makes her Southampton debut

Anyone that knows me well is fully aware that I am an avid shipspotter and photographer always with camera in hand and living in Southampton gives me some great opportunities to see the ships up close. However this love does come with a down side as it often means a early start in order to watch them arrive and the 05:30 arrival of Celebrity Edge meant another one of those! 

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Celebrity Edge arriving with fire tug escort

I was especially keen to get quayside early as I was photographing her arrival for Southampton port operator ABP and they wanted arrival photos to share in their press release and on social media channels early that morning.

Welcome Celebrity Edge

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In what is one of the most anticipated cruise calls of the year Celebrity Cruises newest and most technologically advanced ship made her Southampton debut early on 13th May. The visit follows a transatlantic crossing as the ship heads for the summer season in the mediterranean.

Delivered in October 2018 Celebrity Edge was constructed by STX France in Saint Nazaire which is the same shipyard as MSC Bellissima which was named in the port in March this year.

During her first visit nearly 2,000 VIP’s and specially invited guests boarded the ship ahead of a two day taster cruise which will allow the guests to get an exclusive first glimpse of the new ship, including the rooftop garden, plunge pools and Eden a stunning three-deck dining and entertaining space.

Other unique features are the Magic Carpet, a striking orange platform cantilevered from the side of the ship acts as a tender platform when in smaller ports and an outside dining venue 13 stories above the water. Celebrity Edge also has 1,500 suites designed by renowned British interior designer Kelly Hoppen MBE.

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The innovative Magic Carpet

Commenting on the maiden call to Southampton, President and CEO of Celebrity Cruises,  Lisa Lutoff Perlo, said “Edge is redefining the cruise experience and today she makes her exciting debut in the UK, a really significant market for us‘ We can’t wait to see everyone’s reaction when she arrives in Southampton. Edge is changing how people view a cruise vacation, especially for those who are new to cruise/first-timers,’ she added.

Jo Rzymowska, vice president and managing director, Celebrity Cruises UK, Ireland and Asia, commented: ‘This is a ship that defies expectations, elevating cruise luxury to a whole new level. There are four more of these Edge-class ships on order and the next, Celebrity Apex, will be based in the UK when it launches in Southampton next year. This visit is the perfect preview of what’s in store.’

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Following the two night cruise Celebrity Edge arrived back in Southampton early this morning and will depart later today on a 10 night Iberian cruise.

While in Southampton today Celebrity Edge together with MSC Preziosa are the backdrop to the first day of the Cruise Lines Association (CLIA) 2019 conference with this year’s theme being the Next Generation.

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I am excited to be attending the three day conference and visiting Celebrity Edge today, so be sure to follow me on twitter & instagram for live updates when possible.

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Celebrity Edge’s unique profile overlooking City Cruise Terminal

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog.

 

 

 

Royal Caribbean redeploys Independence of the Seas in 2020 away from UK

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Sailing from Southampton May 2018 © Andrew McAlpine

Royal Caribbean have announced that the UK’s favorite ship Independence of the Seas will not be sailing from Southampton in 2020 and a deployment change will instead see her stay in Port Everglades, Florida.

With new itineraries to the Caribbean, Independence of the Seas will be making calls to the newly relaunched private island, Perfect Day at Coco Bay.

On Royal Caribbean’s UK website, the cruise line explained the change:

“Your sailing is being cancelled because we’re making changes to our 2020 season that require the Independence of the Seas to remain in the Caribbean, instead of sailing to Southampton. 

Our goal is to provide our guests with the best itineraries that take you to exclusive parts of the world and have decided to make these changes for the 2020 season to maximise our capacity in the Caribbean. We are terribly sorry. We know this news is disappointing. We do hope you find an alternate vacation option with us.”

The company also issued a statement on its twitter channel:

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Royal Caribbean UK also apologized for canceling sailings some guests have booked, “Our goal is provide our guests with the best itineraries that take you to exclusive parts of the world and have decided to make these changes for the 2020 season to maximize our capacity in the Caribbean. We are terribly sorry. We know this news is disappointing.”

Booked guests will receive a full refund and a future cruise credit, which is valued at 25% of their Independence of the Seas cruise fare, as a result of their cruises being cancelled and will be notified as soon as possible by the cruise line or their travel agents.

In 2020 both Explorer of the Seas and Anthem of the Seas will still be operating from Southampton.

Anthem of the Seas Maiden Call
Anthem of the Seas seen on her maiden call to Southampton April 2015 © Andrew McAlpine

For further information or help on the changes click on the following link

https://help.royalcaribbean.co.uk/hc/en-gb/sections/360004499552-Independence-of-the-Seas-2020-changes-to-sailings

As always thank you for taking the time to read my blog

 

 

 

 

Norwegian Star to sail from Southampton in 2020

 

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© Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line has announced that from May 2020 Norwegian Star will sail a range of 12 to 14-day cruise itineraries from Southampton. The itineraries will include cruises around the British Isles, to Iceland and Norway. With the ship sailing from the port during the summer season through until October.

A 14-day Scotland, England and Ireland heritage cruise will depart Southampton on 3rd May 2020 and includes ports of call such as Le Havre, Zeebrugge, Amsterdam, Invergordon,  Newhaven, Kirkwall, Greenock, Belfast, Dun Laoghaire, Holyhead, Cobh and Portland.

A Majestic Fjords 14-day cruise will visit Iimuiden, Bergen, Alesund, Hellesylt, Geiranger, Akureyri, Reykjavik (overnight), Belfast and Dublin. The cruise departs Southampton on 28 June 2020.

Launched in 2001 the 91,740 gross tonne ship ship can accommodate 2,348-passengers and offers a wide array of dining and entertainment venues. In 2018 the ship underwent a three week dry docking period in Barcelona as part of The Norwegian Edge programme. and underwent extensive enhancements to her staterooms, public spaces, restaurants, bars and lounges, and also unveiled three new venues: Sky High Bar, Bliss Ultra Lounge and Spice H2O.

Replacing Bier Garten, the outdoor bar and lounge Sky High Bar showcases a new design complete with an updated bar and seating for close to 120 guests. Bliss Ultra Lounge replaces Spinnaker Lounge for late-night entertainment and now has a light, neutral colour palette and a fresh carpet, custom loungers, seating, an renovated bar and artwork.

For the first time, Norwegian Star offers an adults-only area, Spice H2O, which features a private pool, hot tubs, full bar and ocean views. During the day, which can be used for sunbathing, while at night, it becomes an open-air lounge with live entertainment, DJs and themed nights.

All 1,174 staterooms and suites were outfitted with USB ports, enhanced with over 1,500 works of art and revitalised with new carpet, headboards and select furniture. The three-bedroom garden villas, which feature private deck areas and can accommodate up to seven people, were also remodelled.

Ship Data

Name: Launched as Superstar Libra (2000), renamed Norwegian Star (2001)

Shipyard: Meyer Werft, Papenburg, Germany

Yard No.: 648

Flag: Bahamas

Class: Dawn Class

Cost: $400 million

Length; 294.13m

Decks: 15 (Passenger)

Passenger Capacity: 2,348

Crew: 1,031

Speed: 24 knots

Gross Tonnage: 91,740

As always thank you for taking the time to read my blog

 

THE COUNTDOWN IS ON: 182 DAYS LEFT UNTIL THE CHRISTENING OF MSC GRANDIOSA IN HAMBURG

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First of the enriched Meraviglia-Plus ships to come into service

Inaugural season to be spent in the stunning Western Mediterranean

New flagship to feature two brand new Cirque du Soleil at Sea Shows

With exactly six months before the christening of MSC Grandiosa on 9th November in the Port of Hamburg, MSC Cruises, the world’s largest privately-owned cruise line and market leader in Europe, South America, South Africa and the Gulf, today revealed they would be welcoming back international TV star Michelle Hunziker to host the glamorous official naming ceremony of the Company’s newest and largest ship to date. Hunziker, internationally known as a TV presenter, actress and singer, also hosted the christening of MSC Seaview in Genoa in 2018. Growing up in Italy and of Swiss descent, Hunziker speaks five languages and embodies the international spirit and Mediterranean soul of MSC Cruises.

MSC Grandiosa will become the largest ship in the MSC Cruises fleet and the first of the Meraviglia-Plus class of ships. Enriched with more cabins, more public space and innovative new features, the highlights include:

·         The iconic Mediterranean Promenade will be the heart of the ship. Under the 98.5-metre-long LED sky, guests can enjoy a varied entertainment programme as well as being able to indulge in shopping and world class food and drink. 

·         MSC Grandiosa takes the onboard shopping experience to a new level with the indoor promenade offering mall-style boutiques, where guests will find their favourite brands of clothing, jewellery, technology and more, all at unbeatable prices. 

·         The speciality restaurants located in the promenade include the new restaurant concept L’Atelier Bistrot, a French-inspired bar with lounge area, which also offers a stage and dance floor as well as a seated terrace.

·         The entertainment highlight will be two brand new shows from Cirque du Soleil at Sea. The shows are created by world-leader in live entertainment, Cirque du Soleil as part of a unique long-term partnership with MSC Cruises. 

·         MSC Grandiosa will feature the world’s first virtual personal cruise assistant, ZOE. This artificial intelligence guest service will answer guest questions in the comfort of their cabin alongside a ground-breaking feature of connected cruise experience, MSC for Me.

·         Designed as a ship for all seasonsMSC Grandiosa will spend winter in the MediteranneanWith less visitors and the perfect winter sun weather, this is the ideal time of year to discover some of the top destinations throughout Italy, France and Spain without the crowds.

Michelle Hunziker commented, “I am delighted to be part of the christening ceremony of MSC Grandiosa in Hamburg. Since the christening of MSC Seaview last year, I feel a part of the MSC family. I am particularly pleased that the christening is taking place in Germany. I have met great people here and celebrated many professional successes. For me, Germany means a piece of home and Hamburg has such a wonderful maritime heritage, it will be an honour to become a part of it. I am also looking forward to discovering everything that this new and stunning ship has to offer.”

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A section of MSC Grandiosa’s hull seen at the shipyard © Andrew McAlpine

MSC Grandiosa is the third ship of the innovative Meraviglia generation and the first of the Meraviglia-Plus class. She will become the fifth new next-generation ship MSC Cruises has launched in just two and a half years as part of MSC Cruises’ investment plan of €13.6 billion spanning more than 10 years.  MSC Grandiosa will be followed by a further 12 ships through to 2027 with her sister ship, MSC Virtuosa launching next October 2020.

Meraviglia generation ships have been designed to meet every need of today’s cruise guest. The extraordinary design, wide array of facilities and entertainment make these ships ideal for the whole family. Designed for all seasons, they are able to call at most of the world’s international cruise ports.

Last year I was fortunate to get a glimpse of MSC Grandiosa under construction at in Saint Nazaire when I visited the shipyard to see MSC Bellissima float out.

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MSC Grandiosa seen under construction at Chantiers de l’atlantique in St.Nazaire

 

MSC Cruises have also announced that following her christening in Hamburg MSC Grandiosa will visit Southampton on 13th November, afterwhich she will sail on her maiden cruise to the Mediterranean with calls at Lisbon, Barcelona, Marseille and finally Genoa.

As always thank you for taking the time to read my blog

To find out more booking information www.msccruises.co.uk

Check out this hilarious video from Virgin Voyages The No-Guilt Trip

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From day one Virgin Voyages set out to change the cruise industry and remove many of the misconceptions associated with cruising.

Their first vessel Scarlet Lady which is currently under construction in Italy will launch in April 2020 and will be an adults only ship.

8 out of 10 parents say they feel guilty taking a vacation without their kids

“Honestly, my kids would not even function without me”

 “My kids would miss me”

 “I think the longest I’ve been away from my kids is….8 hours”

Turns out kids don’t mind if their parents take a few days and go on a real vacation, without them.

To highlight this misconception and encourage moms to take a break this Mother’s Day, Virgin Voyages, the adult-by-design cruise line setting sail in 2020, created a hilarious video showing kids pushing their moms to take a vacation without them.

“I’m okay if Mom goes away, she can go as long as she wants”

Video Credits:

Mother New York

Director: Damien Drake

I am excited to share that i will be attending the UK Scarlet launch night in London on 21st May. In the week leading up to this be sure to check my blog as I will have a series of posts sharing all we know so far about Scarlet Lady.

As always thank you for taking the time to read my blog

For mor inforation on Scarlet Lady and Virgin Voyages head over to their website

https://www.virginvoyages.com

 

Costa Cruises names newbuild for China Costa Firenze arriving October 2020

Cruises on the new ship, currently under construction at the Fincantieri shipyard in Marghera, will be available for booking starting from tomorrow. Before being positioned in Asia to serve the Chinese market, Costa Firenze will spend a whole month in the Mediterranean, offering 5 cruises from Trieste and Savona. These will be followed, on November 2, 2020, by a fantastic 51-day voyage from Savona to Hong Kong.

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© Costa Cruises

Genoa, May 6, 2019 – Costa Firenze is the new Costa Cruises ship due to come into service in October 2020. Currently being built at the Fincantieri shipyard in Marghera (Italy), Costa Firenze is a 135,500 gross tons ship with capacity for over 5,200 guests; she is the sister ship of Costa Venezia, which was launched in Trieste on March 1 this year.
Costa Firenze and Costa Venezia are the Italian company’s first ships specifically designed for the Chinese market. Before being positioned in Asia, Costa Firenze will spend a whole month in the Mediterranean, in October 2020, thus allowing all of Costa’s customers in Europe and around the world to be the first to experience a truly unique vacation on board the new ship. Cruises will be available for booking starting from tomorrow: there will be five 5-to-7-day cruises and one 51-day positioning cruise to China.
“Given the success of the inaugural cruises of Costa Venezia, we have decided to keep Costa Firenze in the Mediterranean for a whole month before its positioning in Asia” – says Neil Palomba, President of Costa Cruises – “Costa Firenze is part of an expansion plan for the Costa Group that includes a total of 7 new ships being delivered by 2023, for a total investment of over 6 billion euros. The next ship to come into service, in October 2019, will be Costa Smeralda, a real tribute to Italy’s finest and our excellence”.
Costa Firenze’s first cruise will sail from Trieste to Savona, departing on October 1, 2020, calling at Bari, Barcelona and Marseilles.

On October 8, 2020, the ship will leave Savona for a short cruise to Marseilles, Barcelona and Savona. On October 12, 19 and 26, Costa Firenze will depart from Savona for three 1-week cruises including Naples (replaced by Civitavecchia for the October 19 cruise), Messina (replaced by Palermo for the October 19 cruise), Valencia, Barcelona and Marseilles. The final cruise available will be the positioning cruise to China: a fantastic 51-day itinerary starting from Savona on November 2, 2020 and ending in Hong Kong on December 22, 2020. The journey will be a discovery of a host of different cultures, landscapes and flavours. From the Mediterranean, the ship will sail to Dubai, through the Suez Canal and the Red Sea, calling at Naples, Messina, Greece, Israel, Jordan and Oman. From Dubai to Abu Dhabi, futuristic cities built in the desert, the ship will continue to India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia and Malaysia. The final part of the cruise will be devoted to the Far East: Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and finally China. The itinerary can also be subdivided into three separate legs, Savona-Dubai (19 days), Dubai-Singapore (20 days) and Singapore-Hong Kong (14 days), which can also be combined with each other.

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Like its sister ship Costa Venezia, Costa Firenze will offer a series of innovations designed specifically for the Chinese market, where the Italian company was the first to operate in 2006 and is currently the leader, allowing guests to discover Italian culture and lifestyle.

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“Costa Venezia and Costa Firenze are the proof of Costa Cruises’ long-term commitment to China market” –
stated Mario Zanetti, President of Costa Group Asia – “Costa Cruises is also dedicated to bringing the Italian
Aesthetic lifestyle to Chinese guests while delivering Italian culture and experience to them. Together with
Costa Venezia, the arrival of Costa Firenze will help boost the development of Chinese cruise industry.”
The ship is inspired by the city of Florence, representing centuries of Italian culture and history. During the
Costa Firenze cruises, guests together with their families and friends will have a chance to immerse
themselves fully in Italian beauty and aesthetic, which will take shape in various aspects of life on board:
from interior design to dining, from entertainment to hospitality.

The Costa Group is the leading cruise company in Europe and China, headquartered in Genoa (Italy). The 28 ships of the
brands Costa Cruises, AIDA Cruises and Costa Asia together have a total capacity of more than 85,000 berths. The fleet
will be further strengthened by 5 new vessels by 2023. The company has a global workforce of 30,000 employees working
onboard and in its 20 offices in 14 countries.

Ship Data

Name: Costa Firenza

Namesake: City of Florence

Owner: Carnival Corporation PLC

Operator: Costa Cruises

Shipyard: Fincantieri Marghera

Class: Vista Class

Cost: $676 million (reported)

Length; 321.56m

Decks: 14 (Passenger)

Passenger Capacity: 5,200

Speed: 18 knots

Gross Tonnage: 135,500

As always thank you for taking the time to read my blog

Princess Cruises begins 50th Alaska Season

Princess Cruises’ 50th year sailing in Alaska is now under way following the arrival of the 3,080-guest Ruby Princess in America’s northernmost state. A further six ships will head to Alaska, including the 3,560-guest Royal Princess on May 11, marking the cruise line’s largest ever deployment to the region.
 
Princess is offering a variety of cruise and cruise tour options up to September, which will encompass the state’s must-see attractions including Glacier Bay National Park and Denali National Park. Alaska cruises range in length from seven to 12 days and depart from Vancouver, Anchorage (Whittier), Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles. 

Princess also owns and operates five wilderness lodges in riverside locations near national parks, offering more than 20 cruisetour options for guests. Princess cruisetours combine a seven-day cruise with a multi-night land tour and exclusive ‘direct to the wilderness’ rail service.

Several new initiatives have been introduced to mark the 50th anniversary. They will be offered alongside Princess Cruises’ ‘North to Alaska’ onboard programme, which includes ‘puppies in the piazza’ – when some of Alaska’s newest sled dogs and their handlers come aboard – and the ‘cook my catch’ fishing shore excursion.

The initiatives include:

·         A number of new shore excursions in Juneau, Ketchikan and Icy Strait Point such as:

– A luxury whale watch by yacht in Juneau 
– An interactive self-guided jeep adventure in Juneau
– The Ketchikan pub walk 
– A rainforest trail bike and hike adventure in Ketchikan  
– A seafood feast and tribal dance show in Icy Strait Point
– A wilderness hike and kayak adventure in Icy Strait Point

·         The introduction of the ‘Glacier Tea’ cocktail, a take on the Long Island Ice Tea that is topped off with Blue Curacao, which is similar to the brilliant glacier blue colour found in Alaska

·         A special Alaska beer tasting flight, featuring blends from the Juneau-based Alaskan Brewing Company

·         An onboard Northern Lights planetarium in the theatre of every Alaska ship

·         A mini museum exhibit featuring notable images from the 50 years Princess Cruises has sailed to Alaska
  
Tony Roberts, Princess Cruises’ vice president UK and Europe, said: “We take more people than any other cruise line to Alaska and have hosted over 5 million guests during the last 50 years.

“Alaska is a truly stunning destination and there’s no better way to explore it than via a cruise. A wealth of itinerary options are on offer for anyone looking to book a bucket list sailing to the region this year. The Great Land’s glaciers, wildlife, national parks and beautiful port cities are simply not to be missed.”

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Star Princess in Alaska © Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises is offering a 7-night Inside Passage cruise on Star Princess departing September 15, 2019. Sailing roundtrip from Seattle, ports of call include Ketchikan, Tracy Arm Fjord (scenic cruising), Juneau, Skagway and Victoria (British Columbia). Prices from £699 per person.

For more information or to book visit www.princess.com , call 0344 338 8663 or contact your local travel agent.

Thank you for taking the time to ready my blog… be sure to read my next post on why I want to visit Alaska

Princess Cruises announces the arrival of UK-based ship

Crown Princess at Sea

Crown Princess has arrived in Southampton to begin its spring and summer season in the UK and will be sailing around the British Isles on a series of 12-night voyages.

The 3,080-guest vessel has over 1,500 cabins, including nearly 900 balconies, and four swimming pools. It has 19 decks; 18 restaurants, cafes and bars; and at a length of over 950 feet is around the size of three football pitches.

Crown Princess will feature the multi award-winning Ocean Medallion technology from July 24, the first UK-based ship to do so.

The Medallion is intended to make every guest feel like a VIP and helps them relax and enjoy their cruise from the moment they are ready to step onboard. The device is the same size as a 10p piece and replaces more traditional cruise cards.

The Medallion’s instant technology makes it quicker and easier to get on and off the ship. Once onboard it opens guests’ doors when they approach, which is ideal for anyone who already has their hands full or is with small children.

The Medallion’s ‘compass’ feature means guests can find and stay connected with friends and family onboard, as well as navigate their way around the ship. It also allows guests to order drinks and snacks, plus holiday essentials such as suntan lotion and swimming goggles, to most parts of the ship.

Three ships to date have been Medallion-activated: Caribbean Princess, Regal Princess and Royal Princess.

In September, Crown Princess will make her way to Fort Lauderdale for roundtrip Caribbean sailings. The ship will return to the UK from May-November 2020, where she will sail from Southampton on a series of voyages to the Mediterranean, Canary Islands and northern Europe.

Princess Cruises is offering a 12-night British Isles cruise, departing August 17, 2019 on Crown Princess. Sailing roundtrip from Southampton, ports of call include Guernsey (St. Peter Port), Cork, Dublin, Belfast, Glasgow, Invergordon, Edinburgh (South Queensferry) and Paris/Normandy (Le Havre). Prices from £1,099 per person.

Princess Cruises is offering a 17-night Mediterranean and Greek Isles Cruise, departing November 6, 2020 on Crown Princess. Sailing roundtrip from Southampton, ports of call include Seville (Cadiz), Valletta, Mykonos, Kusadasi (for Ephesus), Santorini and Cartagena. Prices from £1,799 per person.

VIRGIN VOYAGES BREWS UP PARTNERSHIP WITH INTELLIGENTSIA COFFEE

On world earth day 2019 Virgin Voyages spills the beans and announces Intelligentsia Coffee as exclusive coffee provider with a custom Virgin Voyages blend and expert baristas crafting beverages at Ministry of Ground

CHICAGO — April 22, 2019 — When Virgin Voyages’ first ship, the Scarlet Lady, embarks on her inaugural season in 2020, Sailors will have access to extraordinary brews from Intelligentsia Coffee.  The specialty coffee pioneer and Virgin Voyages’ partnership will be rooted in shared values of commitment to quality and responsible sourcing.

Coffee lovers should rejoice because Virgin Voyages Sailors will never have a bad cup on their holiday. Virgin Voyages’ exclusive Intelligentsia blend will be available complementary at all eateries on board Scarlet Lady and her sister lady ships. The Virgin Voyages Blend sources fresh coffee year-round, from Intelligentsia’s Northern season menu in the summer and fall and Southern season menu in the winter and spring.  Throughout the year, Intelligentsia’s team creates a consistent flavor experience, balancing the comfort of familiar flavors with a spirit of adventure and discovery.  Look for caramelized sugars, a touch of roastiness, and the natural sweetness that is the hallmark of Intelligentsia’s very best coffees.

In addition to a constant supply of freshly brewed coffee in all eateries aboard Scarlet Lady, Ministry of Ground and Ministry of Ground Too powered by Intelligentsia will serve as the ship’s coffeebars, fully equipped with expert baristas and made to order beverages. Intelligentsia’s renowned coffee educators will provide extensive training to all Virgin Voyages baristas.

“I judge a city by the quality of its coffee as social conversations cannot start before I’ve had my daily dose of personality juice,” said Chris Stubbs, Senior Director of Sailor Experience at Virgin Voyages.” We all knew Scarlet Lady needed a special coffee partner prepared by exceptionally trained baristas who can create the perfect cup of coffee to fuel our Sailors’ voyages with us.

Environmental sustainability and social impact are at the core of Virgin Voyages’ values. The brand’s purpose is to create an Epic Sea Change for All and use business as a force for good, creating positive changes for people and the planet. Those values are shared by Intelligentsia’s team, who focuses on making extraordinary coffee an agent of change.

Chicago-based Intelligentsia is a pioneer of coffee’s “third wave”, and the ideals of exceptional quality, transparency, and innovation that define specialty coffee today. Best known for being the first to adopt the direct trade model, a progressive sourcing method where their buying team travels directly to coffee-producing countries to source and collaborate with partners, paying well above fair trade prices. Intelligentsia continues to innovate the industry, elevating every cup to a curated, culinary experience and working with partners to grow the world’s most exceptional coffees.

Located in the heart of the ship on deck 7, coffee lovers can gaze out at the sea through a porthole-style window while enjoying their coffee. Designed by Softroom of London, Ministry of Ground features large porthole-style windows designed with their very own window seat so Sailors can gaze out at the ocean while sipping a single-origin coffee. Ministry of Ground has been designed with soft earth-tone finishes and furnished with aquamarine and purple hues for seating, tables and loungers. In addition to great hand-crafted specialty coffees, Sailors visiting Ministry of Ground can indulge in complimentary light cakes and bites with retail items like bags of Intelligentsia coffees and Kilogram teas, coffee cups, kettles and more available for purchase. Ministry of Ground Too is located in The Galley food market, so Sailors can sip their favorite specialty coffee while grabbing a quick bite.

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A stunning venue for your morning coffee, Ministry of Ground on board Scarlet Lady        ©Virgin Voyages

Future Sailors and First Mates, travel partners, are invited to check out Virgin Voyages by visiting  www.virginvoyages.com 

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ABOUT INTELLIGENTSIA COFFEE

 

Intelligentsia Coffee was founded by Doug Zell and Emily Mange in 1995, in the pursuit of extraordinary coffee. 24 years later, Intelligentsia remains one of specialty coffee’s most pioneering and innovative companies. The Intelligentsia Direct Trade sourcing model has created opportunities for thousands of smallholder coffee farmers around the world and has been adopted by specialty coffee roasters everywhere. Known for their In-Season program and unique single-origin and rotating blends, Intelligentsia provides exclusive, remarkable coffees consumers won’t find anywhere else. There are 13 Intelligentsia coffeebars around the country, six located in their hometown of Chicago, four in Los Angeles, two in Boston and one in New York City. 2019 will welcome three new coffeebars: Hollywood (now open), TWA (spring 2019) and Austin (summer 2019). Follow on social at @IntelligentsiaCoffee on Facebook and Instagram, and @Intelligentsia on Twitter.

You can check out Intelligentsia Coffee at www.intelligentsiacoffee.com/coffee

 

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© Intelligentsia Coffee

Are you a coffee lover or connoisseur?

I certainly am and I like nothing more than a mid morning coffee preferably on board a ship somewhere! where’s your favorite place? and where ever you are hopefully this has provided an interesting read with your coffee.