CELEBRITY CRUISES MARKS SUMMER RETURN TO UK, WITH NEW LUXURY ‘STAYCATIONS’

Celebrity Silhouette sporting her new hull colour Image: Celebrity Cruises
  • Revolutionised Celebrity Silhouette returns to the UK this summer with new spaces designed by Kelly Hoppen CBE
  • Celebrity Silhouette will sail with all guests aged 18 and above vaccinated against COVID-19, and those under the age of 18 with negative PCR test results
  • Announcement is welcome boost for Southampton and UK tourism

LONDON (March 29th, 2021 09.00BST) – Celebrity Cruises announced its long-anticipated return to UK shores today, as company President and CEO, Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, confirmed that its newly revolutionised ship, Celebrity Silhouette, will set sail from Southampton this summer, offering new luxury staycations to discerning British guests.

Celebrity Silhouette’s return to UK shores will be welcome news, not just for holidaymakers looking for a luxury staycation to reconnect with friends and family, but also for the British tourism industry.

Celebrity Silhouette will sail with all guests aged 18 and over vaccinated against COVID-19, and those under the age of 18 with negative PCR test results. The announcement comes just days after Celebrity Cruises announced its Caribbean comeback with Celebrity Millennium departing from St. Maarten and Celebrity Apex departing from Greece, both in June.

Image: Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises President and CEO Lisa Lutoff-Perlo said, “We’re delighted to be returning to Southampton after over a year away. We are truly committed to the UK market and can’t wait to welcome guests back onboard. What could be better than a new luxury ship, ready to take guests on a journey around one of the world’s most beautiful and impressive coastlines? Not only is this extremely significant to us as a business but also to the local tourism industry.”

Setting sail from Southampton from Saturday, July 3rd, the stunning new luxury Celebrity Silhouette will embark on a series of six- to eight-night itineraries around Britain’s coastline. Guests will have the chance to explore the Jurassic Coastline from Portland, discover the bustling Scottish cities and stunning highlands from Inverness, Kirkwall and Glasgow, uncover the rich history of Belfast, plus immerse themselves in the creative and cultural hub of Liverpool, home of the Beatles!

Jo Rzymowska, Vice President and Managing Director EMEA, said: “We are excited to offer guests the chance to reconnect at sea with family and friends and to make up for all those missed celebrations. I cannot thank our UK travel partners enough for their unwavering support throughout this unprecedented time. We can’t wait to welcome our mutual guests onboard Celebrity Silhouette.”

From bow to stern, the ship has been ‘revolutionised’, following a multi-million-pound refit last year, designed to ensure an unparalleled new luxury experience for guests needing to feed their love of travel.

Celebrity Silhouette’s new look includes:

  • Completely modernised staterooms and suites with stunning enhancements designed with guest comfort in mind
  • The addition of The Retreat for suite guests, an exclusive open-air hideaway featuring a private sundeck and redesigned lounge offering complimentary beverages, gourmet bites, live entertainment, and concierge service, designed by award-winning British designer Kelly Hoppen CBE
  • Stunningly reimagined restaurants, bars, and lounges where guests can enjoy unparalleled culinary experiences in captivating environments
  • A redesigned spa and casino
  • New designer boutiques featuring the hottest designer names
  • Advanced RFID lock technology with digital key access to every stateroom door

Celebrity Silhouette’s restart in UK waters underlines the brand’s commitment to the UK market and its confidence in its trusted travel partners. Incentives and resources made available to support agents in selling a new luxury staycation with Celebrity this summer include £20 Celebrity Rewards points on every booking, a dedicated marketing toolkit on the Revolutionised Celebrity Silhouette available on Celebrity Central and double Captain’s Club loyalty points for guests.

And, because Celebrity Cruises believes holidays should be effortless from start to finish, Wi-Fi, drinks and service charges are now ‘Always Included’SM in every purchase, bringing that wonderful feeling of ‘everything is taken care of’ to life. 

In addition, the company’s ‘Cruise with Confidence’ programme provides flexible cancellations and best price guarantees. 

All guests already booked to sail on Celebrity Silhouette this summer will be contacted to discuss the options for their current booking.

Healthy at Sea

The company’s first priority is the health and safety of guests, crew, and the people in the places that Celebrity Silhouette will visit. The ship will sail with comprehensive, multi-layered health and safety measures leveraging expert guidance from its Healthy Sail Panel; Royal Caribbean Group’s Global Head of Public Health and Chief Medical Officer; and local UK health and government authorities. These measures, including vaccination and testing requirements, will evolve along with public health standards. 

Details on all health and safety measures across the entire Celebrity Cruises holiday experience can be found at https://www.celebritycruises.com/healthy-at-sea. Further details on the additional health and safety measures to be implemented by Celebrity Cruises will be announced at a later date. 

For more information on Celebrity Cruises UK comeback, guests and travel advisors should visit: celebritycruises.com/ukcruises

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

Cruise Company Cancellations by Line – and planned resumption dates – Updated

6c48d337c891d77b7d7dd27f234881e5It was announced yesterday that all CLIA ocean-going cruise lines will be voluntarily and temporarily suspending cruise ship operations from U.S. ports of call for 30 days as public health officials and the U.S. Government continue to address COVID-19.

A number of cruise lines had already announced the suspension of cruise operations prior to the announcement from CLIA and following the unprecedented announcement by Princess Cruises earlier this week.

What follows is a list of all cruise lines and links to their announcements and planned resumption dates (in alphabetical order).

I will try and keep the post upated as the situaion changes and more announcements are made.

List of all lines suspended cruise operations

AIDA Cruises

AIDA Cruises has cancelled all cruises until early April 2020

Amawaterways

AmaWaterways cancelled all river cruises in Europe and Asia until 25th April 2020 (including April 26, 2020 aboard AmaCerto)

Avalon Waterways

Avalon Waterways has cancelled all cruises until 30th April 2020.

Azamara Club Cruises

Azamara has cancelled all cruises in the United States are suspended for 30 days beginning midnight 13th March. Currently all international cruises will operate on their scheduled itineraries.

Celestyal Cruises

Celestyal Cruises has suspended all cruises  until 1st May 2020

Cruise and Maritime Voyages (CMV)

Cruise and Maritime Voyages has suspended all cruises until 24th April 2020

Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises has suspended cruises in the United States for 30 days beginning midnight on 13th March. Currently all international cruises will operate their scheduled itineraries.

Costa Cruises 

Costa Cruises has cancelled all cruises until 30th April 2020. (updated 5/3)

CroisiEurope All cruises postponed until 15th April (updated 16th march)

Cunard

Cunard cancelled all cruises until 11th April, with all three ships now due to return to the UK.

Disney Cruise Line

Disney Cruise Line from 14th March all cruises have been cancelled until end March 2020.

Dream Cruises

Dream Cruises announced a voluntary suspension of all cruises ex Singapore onboard Genting Dream from 23rd February, 2020 until 27th March, 2020.

Update 25/3

Explorer Dream Australian program of cruise itineraries cancelled between 8th October 2020 and 21st February 2021

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has cancelled all cruises through to the und of May 2020.

Emerald Waterways

Emerald Waterways has cancelled all cruises until 1st May 2020.

Holland America Line

Holland America Line announced a voluntary suspension of all cruises around the world for 30 days commencing 13th March 2020.

Hurtigruten

Hurtigruten announces that all Norwegian coast operations are suspended until 18th April, and all international expedition sailings are cancelled through April 28th. (updated 18th March)

MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises has cancelled all cruises departing from Miami from 14th March through to 30th April 2020.

MSC Cruises confirms that all cruises operation will be suspended, all cruises that are currently sailing will do so through the end of their itineraries. (updated 18th March)

Marella Cruises

Marrella Cruises have cancelled all cruises until 28th March 2020.

Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line has cancelled all cruises until 11th April 2020.

Oceania Cruises

Oceania Cruises have cancelled all cruises until 11th April 2020.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Regent Seven Seas Cruises has cancelled all cruises until 11th April 2020.

Royal Caribbean International

Royal Caribbean commencing 13th March all cruises in the United States have been suspended for 30 days. The line also has a number of restrictions for passengers who have certain passports or visited certain countries.

Update: 25/3

“Today, March 24th, we have decided to extend our voluntary suspension until May 11th, 2020. Our goal is to resume operations for most of our ships on May 12th, 2020. Because of announced port closures, there are other itineraries we will be suspending.

• Ships sailing out of Singapore, and ships sailing through Canada have all been impacted differently due to port closures.

◦ Canadian ports will remain closed until July 1st, 2020.

◦ The Port of Singapore will remain closed through May 2020.”

Paul Gauguin Cruises

Paul Gaugin has cancelled all cruises until 11th April 2020.

P&O Cruises

P&O Cruises The line has cancelled all cruises until 11th April (updated 16th March)

Aurora is currently returning early from a Norwegian Fjords cruise, and due Southampton 16th March instead of instead of  23rd March. Staff onboard have been advised that she will not be sailing for 2-3 weeks so expecting a further announcement in due course.

Ventura passengers booked on the next cruise (N004) an 11 night cruise to Spain and Portugal have been advised that it has been cancelled and have been offered a future cruise credit of 125% on any cruises booked before 31st December 2021.

Phoenix Reisen

Phoenix Reisen has announced cancellations for 4 of it 5 is ocean going ships through to April/May 2020.

Quark Expeditions

Quark Expeditions has not advised of any cancellations as yet but has implemented extra precautions and health screening for passengers and crew.

River Cruises (except Nile):

As things are changing rapidly the line has announced it will make further announcements  Monday, March 16th, 2020 at 12:00 p.m. regarding all river trips up to and including April 14th, 2020.

River trips to China, Vietnam and Cambodia have been cancelled.

Ponant

Ponant has not advised of any cancellations as yet but has implemented extra precautions and a ban on any guest or crew member one who falls into following categories:

1. Who passed through China (including Macao and Hong Kong), South Korea, Iran and Italy (even a transit airport) 30 days prior to embarkation.
2. Presenting with a temperature above 100.4°F (38°C) at the time of embarkation and who passed through Taiwan, Singapore, and Japan (even a transit airport) in the last 30 days.
3. Who arrives with a temperature above 100.4°F (38°C) and who is considered a risk by the company’s medical team. The risk will be assessed in line with our protocol for reviewing the information provided in the compulsory health questionnaire, associated symptoms, recently frequented geographic areas, etc.

Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises has suspended all cruise operations for all 18 ships in the fleet until 10th May 2020.

Saga Cruises

Saga Cruises has cancelled all ocean cruises until 1st May 2020.

Scenic River Cruises

Scenic River Cruises has suspended all cruise operations until 30th April 2020.

Silversea

Silversea has amended itineraries due to the closure of Italian ports. and also has restrictions on guests who have traveled from, visited or transited through airports in China (including Hong Kong and Macau), Iran, South Korea and specific areas of Italy (the affected cities within Lombardy and Veneto region) within 15 days of their voyage embarkation, regardless of nationality, will not be allowed to board any of its vessels. Guests who are denied boarding will be issued a full cash refund.

Star Cruises (Hong Kong)

Star Cruises has implemented a number of precautionary measures and extra health screening for guests.

TUI (Mein Schiff)

TUI Mein Schiff brand has amended itineraries as a result of Spanish ports being closed.

Uniworld

Uniworld has cancelled all cruises until 23rd April 2020.

Viking Cruises

Viking Ocean Cruises all ocean and river cruises have been cancelled until 1st May 2020.

Virgin Voyages

Virgin Voyages has announced it is postponing the inaugural Showcase Tour which will now begin on 15th July 2020, with the Maiden Voyage taking place on 7th August 2020.

Windstar Cruises

Windstar Cruises has announced that all cruises have been cancelled until 11th April 2020.

This is an unprecedented time for the whole cruise and travel industry and its a situation that is constantly evolving. I will update this post as things change with the lines.

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

Continue reading Cruise Company Cancellations by Line – and planned resumption dates – Updated

Meet the class of 2020 – The new cruise ships arriving this year – updated

This year will be a record year for the cruise industry with no less than 24 new ocean going cruise ships coming into service. What is interesting is the sheer variety of ships and on board facilities being debuted. The ships range from 5,200 passenger mega-ships through to 100 passenger ultra-luxury,  polar expedition ships and even a modern sail ships. On board facilities and activities are just as diverse as the ships themselves, ranging from a roller coasters to a tattoo parlor, and helicopters, submarines and even mast climbing!

If ever there was a year that summed just how diverse the cruise industry it then this is the year.

Lets take a brief look at the ships setting sail and meet the class of 2020:

Fridtjof Nansen – Hurtigruten

Fridtjof Nansen
Image: Andrew McAlpine

 

Builder: Montex Shipyard (Gdansk, Poland), Kleven Shipyard (Ulsteinvik, Norway)

Launching: March

Tonnage: 20,890gt

Cabins: 265

Passengers: 530

Stand Out feature(s): Hybrid powered,  Observation platforms (on several decks), infinity pool, custom-built expedition equipment inc underwater drones, Zodiacs, Kayaks

Delivered ahead of schedule MS Fridtjof Nansen is the second in a 2-ship series of hybrid-powered expedition ships which were designed for Norwegian coastal and Polar expedition cruises (Arctic and Antarctica itineraries) Fridtjof Nansen” and her earlier sister Roald Amundsen were both named after the most influential Norwegian polar explorers.

 

Seven Seas Splendor – Regent Seven Sea

Seven seas splendor
Image: Seven Seas Splendor

Builder: Fincantieri (Trieste, Italy)

Launching: January

Tonnage: 56,000gt

Cabins: 377

Passengers: 750

Stand Out feature(s): A large number of passenger Lounges, Pickleball Court on deck

Seven Seas Splendor itinerary is based on a series of Caribbean, North America and Europe (Mediterranean) cruises, with Transatlantic repositioning crossings, together with a Panama Canal transit between Florida and California. The inaugural cruise season in the summer of 2020 is in Europe, featuring 15 port destinations, including Italian and French Riviera, Greek Islands, British Isles.

 

 

Scarlet Lady – Virgin Voyages

IMG_2710
Image: Andrew McAlpine

Builder: Fincantieri (Sestri Ponente, Italy)

Launching: February

Tonnage: 110,000gt

Cabins: 1,430

Passengers: 2770

Stand Out feature(s): First tattoo parlour at sea, vegan eateries, adults only

Scarlet Lady is the first cruise ship for Virgin Voyages. The inaugural cruise season starts in April and is based on 7-day Caribbean round trips departing on Sundays from Miami. New/revised itineraries now offer late-night call port departures (some at midnight). Virgin Voyage has a total of four “Lady Ships” on order with the second Valiant Lady, due for delivery in 2021 with the other following in 2022 and 2023.

 

 

Silver Origin – Silversea

sILVER oRIGIN
Image: Silversea

Builder: Shipyard De Hoop BV (Lobith, Holland)

Launching: March

Tonnage: 5800gt

Cabins: 51

Passengers: 102

Stand Out feature(s): The Grill (outdoor dining venue) Observation Lounge located at the bow, Marina Platform (Snorkeling Area)

Silver Origin is a Galapagos-based luxury superyacht. The newbuild is owned by Silversea Cruises and operated by company’s “Silversea Expeditions” division. Silver Origin will sail year-round itineraries in the Galapagos Islands upon entry into service in Summer 2020. Voyages will sail from Baltra to San Cristobal, or reverse, lasting one week in duration.

 

Celebrity Apex – Celebrity Cruises

IMG_5830
Sister ship Celebrity Edge Image: Andrew McAlpine

Builder: Chantiers de l’Atlantique (Saint-Nazaire, France)

Launching: April

Tonnage: 129500gt

Cabins: 1467

Passengers: 2918

Stand Out feature(s): Magic carpet (a cantilevered platform on the side of the ship), Eden and rooftop garden

Celebrity Apex is the second of five new Edge Class ships. Once delivered Apex will be christened on March 30, 2020, in Southampton by best-selling author, activist and CEO of non-profit organisation Girls Who Code, Reshma Saujani.

Celebrity Apex cruise itinerary is based on roundtrips from homeport Southampton. The liner offers a short pre-naming voyage (April 2020) for travel agents only. From Southampton is scheduled a mini-season with 5 departures to ports in northern Europe and Mediterranean. Ex-UK roundtrip itineraries are 7 and 10 days.

 

Le Bellot – Ponant

40-127ee3d99dedc
Image: Ponant

Builder: VARD shipyards (Tulcea Romania and Soviknes-Alesund Norway)

Launching: April

Tonnage: 10700gt

Cabins: 92

Passengers: 184

Stand Out feature(s): “Blue Eye” underwater lounge,Navigation Bridge has an open-bridge policy, infinity pool

She is the fifth in a series of six Explorer-class vessels for the ultra-luxury expedition brand. Set to join the Ponant fleet in April 2020, Le Bellot cruise itinerary offers unique itineraries to to unusual ports and island destinations around the world. On each voyage, passengers enjoy professional lectures and media presentations, led by the ship’s naturalists and themed on the regional wildlife and local cultures.

 

Silver Moon – Silversea

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Sister ship Silver Muse image: Silver Sea

Builder: Fincantieri (Sestri Ponente, Italy)

Launching: April

Tonnage: 40700gt

Cabins: 288

Passengers: 596

Stand Out feature(s): Observation Lounge (with 270-degree panoramic views and a radar screen, Salt water swimming Pool, heated during cool-weather cruises.

Based on the same design same design as the sisterships Silver Muse (2017) and Silver Dawn (2021). Silversea Cruises has a planned expansion up to 12 ships. The last newbuild in this series (still unnamed) is planned for delivery in 2023

 

National Geographic Endurance – Lindblad Expeditions

National Geographic Endurance_0
Image: Ulstein Group

Builder: CRIST Shipyard (Gdynia, Poland), Ulstein Verft (Ulsteinvik, Norway)

Launching: April

Tonnage: 12000gt

Cabins: 69

Passengers: 126

Stand Out feature(s): highest ice-class rating – PC5 (Category A), X-Bow design, two Infinity Edge Pools, Observation Deck

The first of two new polar vessels for the line, the 126-passenger National Geographic Endurance is is built to PC5 Category A standard and is fully stabilized. The maiden voyage, ‘Svalbard in Spring: Polar Bears, Arctic Light and Epic Ice,’ is set to embark April 2, followed by a series of expeditions exploring areas both familiar and new to Lindblad.

Crystal Endeavor – Crystal Cruises

Crystal Endeavor
Image: Crystal Cruises

Builder: Lloyd Werft (MV Werften Stralsund) Germany

Launching: May

Tonnage: 19800gt

Cabins: 100

Passengers: 200

Stand Out feature(s): 1:1 crew-to-guest ratio, fleet of 8 electric amphibious zodiacs, 2 submarines (7-person mini-subs), 2 helicopters

Scheduled for launch in 2020, Crystal Endeavor is a polar-class superyacht and the world’s first purpose-built cruise yacht with P6 (polar-class) hull designation. The itinerary program includes as destinations Europe’s and the Canadian Arctic and Antarctica (during winter), the Americas, Europe, Pacific and Atlantic islands, Russian Far East (including Kuril Islands), Australia New Zealand. Itineraries as length range between 12-22 days.

 

Iona – P&O Cruises

IMG_5746
Image: Christian Costa

Builder: Meyer Werft (Papenburg, Germany)

Launching: May

Tonnage: 184700gt

Cabins: 2500

Passengers: 5200

Stand Out feature(s): biggest-ever ship built for the U.K. market, LNG powered, glass roof covered swimming pool – “SkyDome”, “Lanai Deck” (800m) long outdoor Promenade Deck

P&O newest and largest new ship is set to debut in May with her naming ceremony being held in Southampton on 4th July. The vessel has a sistership (still unnamed) of the same design, scheduled for delivery in 2022.    ship’s itinerary program is based on 7-day Norwegian Fjords cruises roundtrip from homeport Southampton (England), visiting in Norway ports Stavanger, Olden, Hellesylt (or Alesund), Geiranger, Bergen. The inaugural season starts on May 14, 2020 (maiden voyage) and includes only no-fly cruise itineraries round trip from the UK.

 

World Voyager – Mystic Cruises

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Image: Mystic Cruises

Builder: WestSEA shipyard (Viana do Castelo, Portugal)

Launching: June

Tonnage: 9300gt

Cabins: 86

Passengers: 196

Stand Out feature(s): Glass-domed observation lounge,  shoreside activities include: camping, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, Zodiac boat tours

World Voyager is an ice-strengthened expedition cruise ship designed for operations in the polar regions (Arctic and Antarctica) and the second vessel in Mystic Cruises  planned fleet of ten ships. The inaugural season will see the ship in Europe (Mediterranean, Western and Northern Europe / Baltic Sea). A total of 24 different routes were announced, with 7 cruises in Northern Europe leaving from Germany (homeports Kiel and Hamburg).

Evrima – Ritz-Carlton

Evrima
Image: Ritz-Carlton

Builder: Barreras Shipyard (Vigo, Spain)

Launching: June

Tonnage: 26500gt

Cabins: 149

Passengers: 214

Stand Out feature(s): 10 ultra-premium dining options, aft marina platform for watersports with direct access to the sea

Scheduled for inauguration in June 2020, Ritz-Carlton’s Evrima ship (fka “Ritz-Carlton Azora” ) is the first of all three ultra-luxury expedition yachts owned by Marriott International Inc (shipowner). The mega-yacht is operated by The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection (cruise brand and subsidiary of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company). MS Evrima ship’s inaugural cruise (maiden voyage) date is June 14, 2020. The 7-day itinerary departs from Barcelona (Spain) to Palma (Mallorca Island, Balearic Spain).

Enchanted Princess – Princess Cruises

IMG_3156
Image: Princess Cruises

Builder: Fincantieri (Monfalcone, Italy)

Launching: June

Tonnage: 143700gt

Cabins: 1834

Passengers: 3668

Stand Out feature(s): New Sky suite’s, three-deck-high Piazza atrium, new Wakeview swimming pool, Movies Under the Stars (LED screen outdoor cinema)

Launching in June 2020 and being named in Southampton, Enchanted Princess is the 5th Royal-class for Princess Cruises fleet, with fleetmates and sisterships Royal Princess (2013), Regal Princess (2014), Majestic Princess (2017), Sky Princess (2019) and Discovery Princess (2021). One more Royal-class liner (still unnamed) is due for launch in 2022. Enchanted Princess itinerary starts with an inaugural cruise season in Europe (Mediterranean). Departures are offered from homeports Civitavecchia-Rome, Barcelona and Piraeus-Athens.

Le Jacques Cartier – Ponant

le j carter
Image: Ponant/Cruisemapper

Builder: VARD shipyards (Tulcea Romania and Soviknes-Alesund Norway)

Launching: July

Tonnage: 10700gt

Cabins: 92

Passengers: 184

Stand Out feature(s): “Blue Eye” underwater lounge,Navigation Bridge has an open-bridge policy, infinity pool

Le Jacques Cartier cruise ship (initially named “Le Surville”) is the 6th (last) in a six-ship series Ponant Cruises-owned polar expedition vessels. Advertised as “expedition yachts” Le Jacques Cartier cruise programme offers unique itineraries to offbeat port and island destinations around the world, including Caribbean, Europe (Baltic and Mediterranean), East Asia, Australia, Indian Ocean and Pacific Ocean islands (Oceania), Canadian Arctic, Brazil Amazon (Orinoco River), South America and Antarctica.

Spirit of Adventure – Saga Cruises

IMG_6794
Sister ship Spirit of Discovery Image: Andrew McAlpine

Builder: Meyer Werft (Papenburg, Germany)

Launching: August

Tonnage: 58258gt

Cabins: 540

Passengers: 1000

Stand Out feature(s): Wraparound Promenade Deck, new venues inc Nepalese restaurant, Khukuri  House, inspired by Gurkha heritage

Spirit of Adventure is the second of two identical polar expedition vessels built for Saga Cruises. This month it was announced that her official naming ceremony would be held in Portsmouth 19th August, which is a first for the South Coast port. The itinerary is based on round trips from two UK homeports (Dover and Southampton) and starts with “The Inaugural Cruise” from Dover departing August 21, 2020. The 17-day Baltic Sea voyage features an overnight in St Petersburg (Russia).

Sea Cloud Spirit – Sea Cloud Cruises

Sea Cloud Cruises stellt 2020 neuen Großsegler in Dienst
Image: Sea Cloud Cruises

Builder: Metalships & Docks Shipyard (Vigo, Spain)

Launching: Summer

Tonnage: 4228gt

Cabins: 69

Passengers: 136

Stand Out feature(s): world’s first sail ship with an elevator, Swimming Platform (extending from Deck 2), dining venues feature panoramic 270-degree views

Sea Cloud Spirit is a full-rigged, 3-masted barque and currently world’s largest sail ship.The ship was originally named “Sea Cloud Hussar” and due for delivery in 2010 but was delayed due to the original shipyard going bankrupt. Sea Cloud Spirit itinerary was announced in June 2019. The Megayacht’s inaugural season (August through December 2020) will be in the Caribbean and will feature a new destination – USVI (Virgin Islands).

Ocean Victory – Albatros Expeditions

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Image: Victory Cruise Lines, Albatros Expeditions

Builder: CMIH-China Merchants Heavy Industry (Haimen shipyard, Jiangsu China)

Launching: September

Tonnage: 7400gt

Cabins: 93

Passengers: 146

Stand Out feature(s): Observation Deck with two Hydraulic Platforms and two Viewing Platforms), Four Zodiac Docks (2 on each side, hull access at sea-level), 1 x “family stateroom” for up to 6 persons.

MS Ocean Victory is the second in a series of ten ice-strengthened (polar class 1A / PC6) expedition cruise ships scheduled for delivery in September 2020. Starting operations for Victory Cruise Lines, Ocean Victory’s itinerary program 2021 (May through September) includes a total of 20 cruises in Alaska (USA) and British Columbia (Canada). Itineraries lengths range between 7 to 10 days.

 

MSC Virtuosa – MSC Cruises

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MSC Virtuosa Sister ship MSC Grandiosa Image: Andrew McAlpine

Builder: Chantiers de l’Atlantique (Saint-Nazaire France)

Launching: October

Tonnage: 181,000gt

Cabins: 2405

Passengers: 4810

Stand Out feature(s): 111-meter-long indoor promenade with “digital sky” LED screen, Zoe personnel assistant,  2-deck Super Amusement Park, 4D Cinema; Flight Simulator

MSC Virtuosa is the second Meraviglia Plus-class vessel – and follows 2019 built sistership MSC Grandiosa. The Meraviglia-Plus vessels are an upgraded (enlarged design) the previous Meraviglia-Class ships. MSC Virtuosa’s maiden season in Europe is based on 5 homeports (Barcelona Spain, Genoa Italy, Civitavecchia -Rome, Palermo Sicily, Marseille France) and 7-day Western Mediterranean cruises. The 6-port roundtrip itineraries, along with the rotational homeports, also visit Malta (Valletta).

 

Costa Firenze – Costa Cruises

Costa Firenze
Image: Costa Cruises

Builder: Fincantieri (Marghera, Italy)

Launching: October

Tonnage: 135,225gt

Cabins: 2116

Passengers: 4232

Stand Out feature(s): Designed to showcase Italian food, lifestyle, and culture, Gondola Lounge, Bridge of Sighs, Golden Party where there are gifts and surprises won every ten minutes

Costa Firenze like her earlier sister has been designed specifically for China’s cruising market. The inaugural cruise (7-day itinerary Trieste to Savona) starts on October 1, 2020, and visits Bari, Barcelona and Marseille.  with a month-long inaugural season in Europe/Mediterranean, from the Italian homeports Trieste and Savona. From November the liner starts a 51-day relocation from Savona to Hong Kong.

 

mardi Gras – Carnival Cruise Line

Mardi-Gras-FO-2
Image: Carnival Cruise Line

Builder: Meyer Werft (Turku, Finland)

Launching: October

Tonnage: 180,800gt

Cabins: 2641

Passengers: 5285

Stand Out feature(s): “BOLT Ultimate Sea Coaster” the industry’s first roller coaster at sea, Grand Central (midship on Decks 6-8) is an expanded Atrium

Carnival Mardi Gras is the largest and most technologically advanced vessel ever constructed for the line. She is the same basic design as AIDAnova, and Costa Smeralda  delivered 2019 and P&O’s Iona also due this year. The separate Carnival brands all refer to them as different classes e.g XL Class Carnival/P&O, Helios AIDA Cruises, Excellence-Class Costa Cruises. The itinerary program offers a diverse schedule with 6-day to 15-day voyages in Europe and the Caribbean.

Odyssey of the Seas – Royal Caribbean

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Sister ship Spectrum of the Seas Image: Meyer Werft

Builder: Meyer Werft (Papenburg, Germany)

Launching: November

Tonnage: 168,666gt

Cabins: 2095

Passengers: 4246

Stand Out feature(s): North Star, extending s up and over the ship for 360-degree views, “iFly by RipCord” (skydiving simulator) Skypad, Inside cabins featuring “virtual balconies, outdoor theater a large LED screen for movies nightly and live media streaming daily

Odyssey of the Seas cruise ship is the second Quantum-Ultra class vessel. The class is an enhanced version of the Quantum-class ships but in reality they are only slightly larger than the Quantum class, with gross tonnage increasing from 168,666 to 168,800gt. Odyssey of the Seas will homeport in Fort Lauderdale with an inaugural four-night Bahamas cruise departing November 5, 2020. Prior to an the inaugural cruise season the liner will visit Southampton as part of a  Transatlantic re-positioning crossing from Europe.

 

Coral Geographer – Coral Expeditions

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Image: Coral Expeditions

Builder: VARD (Vaung Tau, Vietnam)

Launching: December

Tonnage: 5,536gt

Cabins: 64

Passengers: 120

Stand Out feature(s): wrap-around promenade deck, trademarked “Xplorer” tenders, Six Zodiacs used for landings and close to shore excursions

Scheduled for launch in 2020 (inauguration in January 2021), the MS Coral Geographer cruise ship is the 5th ship in the fleet of the Australian cruise company Coral Expeditions and is designed for ocean cruising to more isolated and shallower tropical destinations. MS Coral Geographer itinerary program is based on Asia-Pacific cruises to Kimberley region, Papua New Guinea, Indonesia and South Pacific Islands.

Ultramarine – Quark Expeditions

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Image: Quark Expeditions

Builder: Brodosplit Shipyard (Split, Croatia)

Launching: Q4 TBC

Tonnage: 13,500gt

Cabins: 102

Passengers: 200

Stand Out feature(s): Panorama Lounge and Bar – A relaxed gathering spot with unobstructed panoramic views and an outdoor, forward-facing Observation Deck. Zodiac’s for onshore landings, Polar Boutique – Stocked with the industry’s top cold-weather expedition gear and a carefully curated selection of polar keepsakes

Quark Expeditions’ Ultramarine ship was named after the color ultramarine, the name also means “beyond the sea”. The vessel was specifically designed to navigate the ice-filled polar waters. The ship’s inaugural season includes voyages in the Canadian Arctic (including Northwest Passage), Greenland, Spitsbergen Norway.

 

Flying Clipper – Star Clippers

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Image: Star Clippers

Builder: Brodosplit Shipyard (Split, Croatia)

Launching: TBC

Tonnage: 8,770gt

Cabins: 150

Passengers: 300

Stand Out feature(s):  Glass-bottomed swimming pool, Complimentary water sport activities include snorkelling, dinghy sailing, waterskiing, sea kayaking. signature onboard fun activity is the supervised mast-climbing,

Flying Clipper is Star Clippers’ biggest ship, and was originally due for delivery at the end of 2017. The ship is modelled on France II, the legendary sailing vessel which was launched in 1912, was the biggest in the world at the time. During summer 2020, Flying Clipper cruises in Europe (Mediterranean). Following Transatlantic re positioning crossing, during winter the ship will be based in the Caribbean. Itineraries including homeports, ports of call etc are yet to be announced.

Of all the ships launching this year what one are you excited about?

As always thank you for reading my latest blog post

 

 

Portsmouth selected as host for Saga’s Spirit of Adventure naming ceremony 

First naming ceremony for Portsmouth 

Rendering of Saga Cruises Spirit of Adventure
Spirit of Adventure Image: Saga Cruises

Saga has announced that Portsmouth has been chosen as the location for the official naming ceremony of their second new-build boutique cruise ship, Spirit of Adventure.  The prestigious event will be held on Wednesday, August 19, 2020.

The city’s dramatic harbour, maritime heritage, and wider regeneration plans for the port were crucial deciding factors for their choice of Portsmouth for what will be a first for the Port.

In recent years, Saga has pioneered the boutique cruising experience for its customers. In 2019, the company launched its first-ever, purpose-built boutique cruise ship, Spirit of Discovery, to great acclaim, and the launch plans for Spirit of Adventure promise to be just as exciting.

Nigel Blanks, Managing Director of Saga cruises, said: “We are absolutely delighted to announce that our second new ship, Spirit of Adventure, will be named in Portsmouth. The city is steeped in British maritime history and it will be another first for Saga Cruises with Spirit of Adventure being the first ever cruise ship to be named in this historic port.

“The naming of Spirit of Discovery has been shortlisted for best cruise ship launch for 2019 and we intend to create an event that is just as special for Spirit of Adventure.  Whilst the ships are recognizable sisters, they are most certainly not twins. Spirit of Adventure will have a distinctly different identity to her sister ship, which is why we have chosen a different port for her Naming Ceremony.  Alongside the port and the cities partners we are planning another utterly memorable event.”

Leader of Portsmouth City Council, Cllr Gerald Vernon-Jackson, said: “We’re so proud Saga has chosen Portsmouth to host the naming ceremony for its newest ship, Spirit of Adventure, which is a first for the city.

“Portsmouth’s dramatic harbour entrance is a stunning backdrop to showcase the ship and we will work closely with Saga to put on an event to match.

“It will also be a fantastic spectacle with the opportunity to welcome the ship as she arrives in Portsmouth and put on a firework display that will take place in the evening from Southsea Common.

“We’re looking forward to Saga’s new vessels becoming a familiar sight in our city. Our cruise transformation is already well under way with a significant berth extension plan, followed by a terminal transformation, which will be completed next year.

“This is a new cruise era for Portsmouth, and we can’t wait for leading brands like Saga to join us on our journey.”

Spectators will be encouraged to welcome Britain’s newest boutique cruise ship, as she sails into Portsmouth for her UK arrival.

Nigel Blanks continued: “Carrying just 999 guests, Saga’s unique boutique cruise ships have been designed specifically for the needs and tastes of the over 50s luxury market. This means there’s no Casino, ice rink or climbing wall. Instead they boast the largest percentage of single cabins of any modern ship, a high crew to guest ratio, West End standard entertainment, five different dining options, balcony cabins for all guests and countless other features offering the latest in luxury, boutique cruising.

The interior design for Spirit of Adventure is bold and striking.  Yet again we have risen to the challenge set us by our guests. They have told us that life for them is not ‘beige’ and they want to see something that showcases the best of British contemporary design.”

Spirit of Adventure will feature three speciality restaurants including the world’s first Nepalese restaurant at sea – Khukuri House, alongside Amalfi, a high-end Italian cuisine restaurant and the Supper Club a dining and live entertainment venue.

The ship will also feature a 500 sq metre spa, The Lido outdoor pool, The Playhouse, a 444-seat theatre and a large library.

Spirit of Adventure’s 17-night The Inaugural Cruise will depart from Dover to the Baltic on August 21, 2020, with further cruises scheduled for 2020 including the Caribbean, the Mediterranean, the Canary Islands and Norway.

Ship Factfile

IMO No.: 9818084

Launch: 2020

Shipyard: Meyer Werft,  Papenburg, Germany  

Building Cost: USD 346 million (GBP 280 million / EUR 310 million)

Hull No.: 715

Keel laid: 3rd June 2019

Sister Ships: Spirit of Discovery (2019)

Length:  236 m

Width: 31 m

Draft:  3 m

Gross tonnage: 58,250  GT

Passengers: 1,000

Staterooms & Cabins: 540

Decks: 10

Cabin Decks: 6

Crew: 505

Cruising speed: 23 knots

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

MSC CRUISES UNVEILS FOUR NIGHTS OF GRAND CELEBRATIONS FOR THE HAMBURG CHRISTENING OF MSC GRANDIOSA

·         The star-studded Christening events will feature big name presenters and artists presenter Michelle Hunziker, Jochen Schropp, Annemarie & Wayne Carpendale and Mousse T.

·         The MSC Village on the banks of the Elbe will livestream the festivities to thousands of Hamburg residents

·         3 Michelin-star German chef Harald Wohlfahrt will design the menu for the Gala Dinner

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MSC Grandiosa see on sea trials Image: MSC Cruises

With just one month until the Christening of the first Meraviglia-Plus generation ship, MSC Grandiosa, MSC Cruises has announced an exciting line-up for the star-studded four-night celebration. With international and German celebrities, the events have been designed for international guests from all around the world as well as special events for the city of Hamburg.

The celebrations will commence with the arrival of the ship in Hamburg on the November 6 and that evening will see the start of four nights of illuminations in the Blue Port by renowned international light artist Michael Batz. From 20 different locations, light installations will bathe the port in blue symbolising the colour of the sea and MSC Cruises’ commitment to the ocean. With respect for the environment and the climate, many small lights with low energy consumption will be used. In this way, a sympathetic ensemble image is created, crowned by the sparkling silhouette of the Elbphilharmonie and the illumination of the MSC Grandiosa.

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the stunning Elbphilharmonie hamburg’s opera house seen at night

Each night on board, MSC Grandiosa will also host German musical artists in the lead-up to the main event.

The traditional Christening ceremony will take place on board the ship, making MSC Grandiosa the true star of the show. With different celebrations taking place all over the ship, guests will have a chance to discover everything that the stunning ship has to offer. The proceedings will be hosted by Michelle Hunziker, who launched MSC Seaview in June 2018. Born in Switzerland and now a popular star in Italy, the talented actress, TV presenter, model and singer embodies the international spirit of MSC Cruises. She will be joined on board by co-host TV host & actor Jochen Schropp, one of the most likeable entertainers in Germany.

On the banks of the River Elbe, the purpose-built MSC Village will welcome 5,000 people so that the city can join the celebrations from 5pm, enjoying food trucks and live music on the evening of the Christening. Presenters Annemarie & Wayne Carpendale, probably the most popular family on German TV, will be hosting the events ashore, linking live to the ceremony on board.

MSC Grandiosa takes her place centre stage in the middle of the River Elbe for the culmination of the evening’s events with a special light show at the Elbphilharmonie concert halls as the ship passes by. The official naming of the ship will then take place by MSC Cruises’ Godmother Sophia Loren and a stunning fireworks display will be launched.  The Port of Hamburg is known as “the gateway to the world” and so MSC Grandiosa will then pass through a spectacular gateway of blue night as she returns to her dock, symbolising the new ship’s entry to the world.

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MSC Cruises Godmother Sophia Loren Image: MSC Cruises

No MSC Cruises Christening event would be complete without a glamourous Gala Dinner on board, with a gourmet menu created by German chef royalty, Harald Wohlfahrt. Chef Wohlfahrt was voted one of the Top 10 Chefs in the World and is the only German chef to hold a three Michelin Star rating for 25 years in a row.

Guests will round off the evening in the iconic 93-metre-long Mediterranean promenade, Galleria Grandiosa, dancing the night away to music from popular German DJ Mousse T. with live vocals from British singer Emma Lanford. The duo have toured together worldwide and will definitely get the party started!

About MSC Grandiosa

Not only will MSC Grandiosa become MSC Cruises newest flagship but she will also become the Company’s most environmentally advanced ship to-date. The new ship is setting the standard for the future as she is equipped with some of the latest cutting-edge environmental technology including a state-of-the-art Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) and next-generation Advanced Wastewater Treatment (AWT) system and has been designed to meet the world’s strictest environmental standards set by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

MSC Grandiosa is the first Meraviglia-plus generation ship and will offer a richness of guest experiences, from world-class entertainment with two brand new Cirque du Soleil at Sea shows, a wide choice of international dining options, original activities for families to an enhanced MSC Yacht Club. MSC Grandiosa will become the second MSC Cruises ship to feature ZOE, the world’s first virtual cruise personal assistant and new updates to the innovative MSC for Me digital innovation program.

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MSC Grandiosa in numbers

 

MSC Grandiosa will depart Hamburg on November 10th to commence her inaugural cruise to Genoa. From November 23rd MSC Grandiosa will commence 7-night itineraries in the Mediterranean calling Genoa, Civitavecchia, Italy; Palermo, Sicily; Valetta, Malta; Barcelona, Spain and Marseille, France.

I will be on board MSC Grandiosa for two days while she is in Southampton so be sure to follow my social channels for updates and the latest from MSC largest ship to date.

To find out more about MSC Grandiosa visit here.

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

Princess Cruises celebrates construction milestone for Enchanted Princess

Princess Cruises has celebrated a significant construction milestone with the float out of the 3,660-guest Enchanted Princess from its building dock at Fincantieri shipyard in Monfalcone, Italy.

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Enchanted Princess in Fincantieri shipyard Image: Princess Cruises 

A ceremony marked the occasion when the ship officially met the sea for the first time.

The float out of a ship is Italian shipyard custom and celebrated by a ‘Madrina’ blessing the vessel and wishing it a safe onward journey, as well as signalling the flow of water into the ship’s building dock.

Serving as the Madrina was Doris Ho, president and CEO of the Magsaysay group based in the Philippines – one of the largest human resource companies in the Asia Pacific region. Ms. Ho has been head of a long-standing partnership with Princess Cruises to recruit, train and develop crew members who work onboard the line’s fleet of ships.

The ship will officially launch in Southampton in June 2020.

Tony Roberts, Princess Cruises’ vice president UK and Europe, said: “We’re delighted to see another significant stage of Enchanted Princess’ construction successfully completed. The countdown to her launch in Southampton next year continues and we’re eagerly anticipating the final development of this stunning ship over the next few months.”

The 143,700-tonne Enchanted Princess will include the signature features of sister ships Royal Princess, Regal Princess, Majestic Princess and Sky Princess, as well as offering new innovations that represent an evolution of the current ships’ designs, including:

·         Two ‘Sky Suites’, which have the largest balconies at sea and will be centrally located on the top decks. Measuring 1,012 square feet (starboard side Sky Suite) and 947 square feet (port side Sky Suite) the balconies will provide a private vantage of the top deck Movies Under the Stars cinema screen, offer 270-degree panorama views and sleep up to five guests. They will feature two bedrooms, two bathrooms and a dining area with skylight as well as a host of exclusive amenities

·         First-of-its-kind digitally enhanced ‘Phantom Bridge’ experience, combining digital and physical elements for the ultimate escape room at sea

·         New entertainment such as the jazz lounge ‘Take Five’, a redesigned Vista Lounge, an enhanced Princess Theatre and the recently announced production show ‘Rock Opera’

·         More than 25 dining venues and bars including the World Fresh Marketplace and speciality restaurants Bistro Sur La Mer (French bistro), Crown Grill Steakhouse and Sabatini’s Italian Trattoria

·         A redesigned Sanctuary area, the spa-inspired top deck retreat reserved for adults. The Sanctuary will feature an enhanced, contemporary design including twice as many private cabanas as its sister ships, as well as new lounge furniture and the option for guests to indulge in a spa treatment

·                The Enclave at the Lotus Spa, which will include the largest thermal suite at sea, including hydrotherapy pool, heated stone beds, Turkish bath and dry, steam and aromatherapy chambers.

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Ocean Medallion © Andrew McAlpine

·        Princess MedallionClass experience, featuring the complimentary OceanMedallion wearable device, which is the same size as a 10p piece, delivers an entirely new level of service and creates a holiday that is more simple, effortless and personalised with:
–         Expedited arrival – Guests who arrive at the terminal with travel documents (i.e. passports) uploaded to their profile enjoy a streamlined and expedited check-in process that gets their holiday started even sooner
–         Touchless stateroom entry – No need to touch, swipe or insert cards or devices into the door handle to unlock the stateroom. As a guest approaches their stateroom the door automatically unlocks
–         On-demand services – Using smart devices, guests have the ability to order drinks, food and retail items such as suntan lotion and have them delivered directly anywhere onboard, including to their stateroom
–         Interactive game play – Available on portals throughout the ship, PlayOcean allows guests to take part in digital scavenger hunts, interactive games and create their own avatars, as well as turning their smart device into a game controller for interactive gaming on the Movies Under The Stars top-deck screen
–         Family and friends locator – Accessible on portals throughout the ships and via guests’ smart devices, OceanCompass leverages the OceanMedallion to easily locate and chat with friends and family onboard. OceanCompass guides guests throughout their journey, providing directional information so they can seamlessly navigate to their next point of interest
–         Interactive voyage timeline – Available on ship portals and via smart devices, JourneyView is an interactive timeline that lets guests scroll through all of the events available on board during their voyage and bookmark activities they’re interested in to their own personalised itinerary. Voyage itineraries are available as many as 60 days in advance, allowing guests to start planning before they leave home

Princess Cruises is offering a 7-day Mediterranean and Aegean voyage on Enchanted Princess, departing September 12, 2020. Sailing from Rome (Civitavecchia) to Athens and calling at Naples, Kotor, Corfu, Chania and Mykonos. Prices from £1,009 per person.

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Rai Caluori EVP guest experience and product development, Doris Ho and Tony Roberts Image Princess Cruises

About Princess Cruises:
One of the best-known names in cruising, Princess Cruises is a global premium cruise line and tour company operating a fleet of 17 modern cruise ships, carrying two million guests each year on 170 itineraries to more than 380 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 and World Cruises. Itineraries range in length from three to 111 days.

In 2017 Princess Cruises, with parent company Carnival Corporation, introduced MedallionClass cruises enabled by the Ocean Medallion – the cruises 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 a hassle-free, personalised cruise, giving guests more opportunity to enjoy their time onboard. Ocean Medallion will be activated on five ships by the end of 2019. An activation plan will continue across the global fleet in 2020 and beyond.

Three new Royal-class ships are currently on order with the next new ship, Sky Princess, under construction scheduled for delivery in October 2019. Princess recently announced that two new (LNG) ships which will be the largest ships in the Princess fleet, accommodating approximately 4,300 guests with expected delivery in 2023 and 2025.  Princess now has five ships arriving over the next six years between 2019 & 2025. The company is part of Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE:CUK).

Thank you for taking the time to read my latest post

Princess Cruises to feature in TV series ‘Monster Ships’

I don’t know if you are anything like me but as a complete ship geek I just love any television show featuring a ship, if you do to then you will like this announcement from Princess Cruises.

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Crown Princess seen sailing from Southampton © Andrew McAlpine

Princess Cruises’ 3,080-guest ship, Crown Princess, will appear in an episode of a new TV documentary, ‘Monster Ships’. The episode will air on UKTV’s Yesterday Channel on Thursday 3 October at 8pm.

Providing a behind-the-scenes look at the workings of a cruise ship, the hour long episode follows Crown Princess as she sails a 10-day Caribbean voyage roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale. The ship visits local islands including Princess Cruises’ own private Bahamas resort, Princess Cays.

The programme provides an insight into the day-to-day roles of the 1,200 crew members and what it takes to ensure a seamless transition onboard when a new voyage begins. With 17 restaurants and bars, round-the-clock room service, four swimming pools, guest entertainment and over 1,500 staterooms, the vessel is a 24-hour operation 365 days of the year.

Monster Ships was commissioned by Discovery Networks International, and made by WAG TV, a leading international producer of TV shows.

Tony Roberts, vice president Princess Cruises UK and Europe, said: “We’re delighted to see Princess Cruises once again feature on the small screen, this time providing viewers with a rare onboard glimpse behind-the-scenes. The Crown Princess episode of Monster Ships is recommended viewing for anyone with an interest in the incredible mechanics and logistics of a cruise ship, or who wants to see the premium guest experience we offer on one of our stunning Caribbean sailings.”

Viewers can also experience the ship for themselves when she sails out of the UK next year on a series of voyages to the Mediterranean and northern Europe.

About Princess Cruises:
One of the best-known names in cruising, Princess Cruises is a global premium cruise line and tour company operating a fleet of 17 modern cruise ships, carrying two million guests each year on 170 itineraries to more than 380 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 and World Cruises. Itineraries range in length from three to 111 days.

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The Ocean Medallion © Andrew McAlpine

In 2017 Princess Cruises, with parent company Carnival Corporation, introduced MedallionClass cruises enabled by the Ocean Medallion – the cruises 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 a hassle-free, personalised cruise, giving guests more opportunity to enjoy their time onboard. Ocean Medallion will be activated on five ships by the end of 2019. An activation plan will continue across the global fleet in 2020 and beyond.

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Sky Princess on Sea trials Image Princess Cruises

Three new Royal-class ships are currently on order with the next new ship, Sky Princess, under construction scheduled for delivery in October 2019. Princess recently announced that two new (LNG) ships which will be the largest ships in the Princess fleet, accommodating approximately 4,300 guests with expected delivery in 2023 and 2025. Princess now has five ships arriving over the next six years between 2019 & 2025. The company is part of Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE:CUK).

Princess Cruises has a multi-year partnership with Discovery, Inc. known as Discovery at SEA. The Discovery at SEA experience is available onboard all Princess Cruises and features immersive activities for the whole family from Discovery and Animal Planet that include exclusive shore excursions to onboard activities. The experiences are based on Discovery’s breadth of brands and programming. The interactive experiences are designed to bring to life the nature, wildlife and history of the regions guests are sailing. Onboard the Crown Princess, passengers can participate in the Discovery at SEA “How It’s Made Tour”, which brings guests backstage to see how production shows come to life onboard a ship.
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About Yesterday:
UK: Freeview 25, Sky 155, Virgin 129, BT, Plusnet, TalkTalk and YouView 25, Freesat 159
Yesterday +1: Sky 255, Virgin 200. Catch-up: UKTV Play
ROI: Sky 161, EIR 537, VF Ireland 229

Yesterday showcases original series such as Abandoned Engineering, Secrets of the Railways and Underground Worlds as well as new and exclusive observational documentaries including Bangers & Cash, Steam Train Britain and Train Truckers.
The channel also features stunning nature and science programming including David Attenborough’s Natural Curiosities and Planet Earth 2, plus seminal war documentaries such as The World at War.

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

Princess Cruises unveils 2021 Canada & New England cruises

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Image: Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises has announced its Canada & New England voyages departing throughout summer and autumn 2021.

The 2021 programme, which goes on sale from September 18, 2019, offers holidaymakers a choice of 17 cruises, visiting 18 destinations on seven itineraries. Princess will have three ships in the region, with voyages ranging in length from seven to 24 days.

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Image: Princess Cruises

The 3,660-guest Sky Princess and 3,140-guest Caribbean Princess will sail from August to October on a series of departures from New York, Quebec and Fort Lauderdale. And as previously announced by the line, September will see the 2,600-guest Grand Princess sail roundtrip from Southampton on a 24-night voyage, calling at Boston, Bar Harbour, Halifax, Sydney (Nova Scotia), Quebec (overnight call), Saguenay, Charlottetown and St. Johns (Newfoundland).

The programme will see the line’s maiden call into Sept-Îles, Quebec, and afford guests more time to explore ashore with a series of late night departures in Boston and Charleston, as well as overnight calls in Quebec on select sailings. There is also the opportunity to visit Greenland, the world’s largest island.

Guests can take advantage of the variety of cruisetours available which encompass the region’s must-see attractions such as Niagara Falls, the Rideau Canal UNESCO World Heritage site in Ottawa, Independence Hall in Philadelphia and Washington DC.

All three ships will feature the multi award-winning OceanMedallion, which has been designed to deliver an entirely new level of service and create a holiday that is more simple, effortless and personalised with:

IMG_8146
© Andrew McAlpine

·         Expedited arrival – Guests who arrive at the terminal with travel documents (i.e. passports) uploaded to their profile enjoy a streamlined and expedited check-in process that gets their holiday started even sooner
·         Touchless stateroom entry – No need to touch, swipe or insert cards or devices into the door handle to unlock the stateroom. As a guest approaches their stateroom the door automatically unlocks
·         On-demand services – Using smart devices, guests have the ability to order drinks, food and retail items such as suntan lotion and have them delivered directly anywhere onboard, including to their stateroom
·         Interactive game play – Available on portals throughout the ship, PlayOcean allows guests to take part in digital scavenger hunts, interactive games and create their own avatars, as well as turning their smart device into a game controller for interactive gaming on the Movies Under The Stars top-deck screen
·         Family and friends locator – Accessible on portals throughout the ships and via guests’ smart devices, OceanCompass leverages the OceanMedallion to easily locate and chat with friends and family onboard. OceanCompass guides guests throughout their journey, providing directional information so they can seamlessly navigate to their next point of interest
·         Interactive voyage timeline – Available on ship portals and via guests’ smart devices, JourneyView is an interactive timeline that lets guests scroll through all of the events available onboard during their voyage and bookmark activities they’re interested in to their own personalised itinerary. Voyage itineraries are available as many as 60 days in advance, allowing guests to start planning before they leave home

Tony Roberts, Princess Cruises’ vice president UK and Europe, said: “With its vibrantly-coloured Autumn foliage, and the chance to visit stunning maritime provinces and quaint seaside towns such as Newport and Bar Harbour, the region continues to be a hit with new and past guests alike.

“As well as a variety of fly-cruise options, for guests wishing to experience everything the east coast of North America has to offer and spend plenty of time relaxing and enjoying the wealth of activities onboard, we are delighted to once again offer them the opportunity to sail across the Atlantic with us, from Southampton.”

Princess cruises is offering 24-day Canada & New England voyage, departing September 18, 2021 on Grand Princess. Sailing roundtrip from Southampton, calling at Boston, Bar Harbour, Halifax, Sydney (Nova Scotia), Quebec (overnight call), Saguenay, Charlottetown and St. Johns (Newfoundland). Prices from £2,399 per person. Special offer currently available with prices from £3,499 per person for a free upgrade from an oceanview stateroom to a balcony.

Thank you for taking the time to read my latest post

World’s first hybrid powered cruise ship to be named in Antarctica

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Image: Hurtigruten

NAMED IN ICE – WITH ICE: Hurtigruten’s new hybrid powered MS Roald Amundsen will be the first ship in history to be named in Antarctica. Photo: ESPEN MILLS/Hurtigruten

Hybrid powered expedition cruise ship MS Roald Amundsen continues to make history – as Hurtigruten announces the first ever ship naming ceremony in Antarctica. Instead of the traditional bottle of champagne, MS Roald Amundsen’s explorer heritage will be honored by naming the vessel with a chunk of ice.

The naming ceremony will take place this fall, as the first world’s first hybrid powered cruise ship makes her way to the white continent on her maiden Antarctica voyage.

– We can think of no better place to name the truly unique MS Roald Amundsen than the waters of Antarctica – where no ship has ever been christened before, Hurtigruten CEO Daniel Skjeldam says.

Named in ice – with ice

Named after polar hero Roald Amundsen – who led the first expedition to traverse the Northwest Passage, the first expedition to the south pole and the first expedition proven to have reached the North Pole – the MS Roald Amundsen naming ceremony is set to honor his legacy with a ritual invented by Amundsen himself.

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When christening his famed expedition ship “Maud” in 1917, Roald Amundsen switched the traditional bottle of champagne for a chunk of ice. Before crushing the ice against her bow, he stated:

“It is not my intention to dishonor the glorious grape, but already now you shall get the taste of your real environment. For the ice you have been built, and in the ice, you shall stay most of your life, and in the ice, you shall solve your tasks”.

Hurtigruten – and the yet to be disclosed godmother – will use the same ritual when naming MS Roald Amundsen.

– To honor Roald Amundsen and his explorer heritage, we will revive his ritual. With over 125 year of Polar experience, Hurtigruten will use the first ever ship naming ceremony in Antarctica to pay our respects to our oceans, the environment and past and present explorers, Skjeldam says.

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Image: ESPEN MILLS/Hurtigruten

Hurtigruten’s hybrid powered MS Roald Amundsen made maritime history by being first cruise ship in the world to sail purely on battery power – as she left Kleven yard for her maiden voyage off the coast of Norway in late June.

IMAGES AND VIDEO: Watch MS Roald Amundsen sailing on battery power
MEET THE CAPTAIN: Hurtigruten veteran Kai (54) to captain MS Roald Amundsen

Specially designed for exploring some of the most spectacular waters of the planet, MS Roald Amundsen features groundbreaking green technology.

The hybrid powered expedition cruise ship is using battery packs to support her low-emission engines and will reduce CO2 emissions with more than 20 % compared to other cruise ships of the same size.

– This opens a new chapter in maritime history. MS Roald Amundsen is the first cruise ship equipped with batteries, something deemed impossible just a few years back. With the introduction of MS Roald Amundsen, Hurtigruten sets a new standard not only for cruising, but for the entire shipping industry to follow, said Skjeldam (pictured).

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Image: Hurtigruten

The stunning scenery will be reflected in a modern Scandinavian design – with features spanning from the high-tech Amundsen Science Center, vast observation decks, an infinity pool, panoramic sauna, wellness center, three restaurants, bars, Explorer Lounge, aft-facing suites with private outdoor hot tubs, and the laidback atmosphere that creates the special Hurtigruten on board feel.

EXPLORE THE GREEN PIONEERVirtual tour of MS Roald Amundsen

From pole to pole

MS Roald Amundsen’s maiden season includes expedition cruises along the Norwegian coast, to Svalbard and Greenland, before becoming the first hybrid powered ship to attempt a traverse of the legendary Northwest Passage – following in the wake of the namesake explorer Roald Amundsen’s famed expedition.

In addition to eco-friendly expedition cruises along the west coast of North- and South America – with destinations bigger cruise ships cannot reach – the MS Roald Amundsen will head to the extreme south for a full 2019/2020 Antarctica season.

On board facilities includes: A fully equipped Science Center, observation decks, infinity pool, panoramic sauna, wellness center, three restaurants, bars, Explorer Lounge, more than 50 % of cabins with private balconies.

Hurtigruten – World leader in exploration travel

Building on 125 years of Norwegian pioneering heritage, Hurtigruten is today the world’s largest expedition cruise company.

Hurtigruten’s rapidly growing fleet of custom-build expedition ships takes modern-day adventure travellers to the world’s most spectacular destinations on our Planet – from the High North to Antarctica in the south.

Being the world leader in exploration travel comes with a great responsibility. Hurtigruten is enhancing destinations and runs an responsible, sustainable global operation. Read more about Hurtigruten’s sustainability efforts here.

Hurtigruten is introducing the world’s first hybrid battery powered cruise ships, the MS Roald Amundsen (2019) and the MS Fridtjof Nansen (2020).

MS Roald Amundsen Factfile

IMO No.: 9813072

Shipyard:  Kleven Yards, Norway

Length: 140 m

Width: 23,6 m

Draft: 5,3 m

Gross tonnage: 20.889

Passengers: 530

Staterooms & suits: 265

Crew: 151

Cruising speed: 15 knots

Ice class: PC-6

The World’s first hybrid powered cruise ship equipped with large battery packs and groundbreaking green technology.

Want to learn more about the worlds first battery powered cruise ship? then be sure to check out my next post when I will be profiling this remarkable ship.

Hurtigruten website

http://www.hurtigruten.co.uk

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

GERI HORNER TEST DRIVES ROCKSTAR SUITES ABOARD VIRGIN VOYAGES’ SCARLET LADY

·         Exclusive partnership with Virgin Voyages sees Geri Horner give RockStar seal of approval on the ship’s Mega RockStar Suites

·         The brand expands offerings for Mega RockStar Suite Sailors

·         Lavish Mega RockStar Suites package will now include a dedicated hair and makeup crew, unlimited complimentary alcoholic and specialty beverages*, personalised in-room bar* and more

Mega RockStar_Geri Guitar.jpg
Geri Horner Test Drives RockStar Suites Image: Virgin voyages

Virgin Voyages is upping the game for its top suites aboard the highly anticipated Scarlet Lady, with new offerings to ensure that Mega RockStars won’t have to worry about a thing during their voyage.

In celebration of the expanded offerings, the brand has today released exclusive video content of the suites, which features Virgin Group founder, Sir Richard Branson, and legendary British pop star, Geri Horner, of the hugely successful girl group, the Spice Girls.

 

The video documents Horner test driving the Virgin Voyages ‘Gorgeous Suite,’ one of the ship’s most glamorous cabins, as a favour to her longtime friend, Branson. Following Horner’s journey through the suite, the footage chronicles her full RockStar experience, as she’s seen spinning records, reading Branson’s book, rocking out with a guitar, indulging in champagne and partying the night away in true Rebellious Luxe fashion.

image003.jpgExpanded Mega RockStar Offering

With only 78 RockStar Suites designed by Tom Dixon’s Design Research Studio  aboard the Scarlet Lady, among them are 15 Mega RockStar Suites, aptly named the Massive Suites, Fab Suites, Posh Suites and Gorgeous Suites. Mega RockStar Suites offer the ultimate VIP experience for anyone looking to live their best life at sea.

As announced today, to ensure that Mega RockStars always look red-carpet-ready, Virgin Voyages will now have a dedicated hair and makeup crew available for them upon request.

Mega RockStar Suite Sailors will now be able to indulge in beverages to their heart’s content thanks to access to unlimited complimentary alcoholic and specialty beverages* in all bars and eateries onboard, plus a free personalised bottomless in-room bar*. 

Should they seek time to unwind, Mega RockStar Suite Sailors can head to Redemption Spa’s thermal suite, the ship’s mermaid and merman hideaway complete with a hydrotherapy pool, mud room, salt room, cold plunge pools, quart` beds– where they will now receive complimentary access throughout their voyages.

What’s more, Mega RockStar Suite Sailors will receive complimentary laundry service, plus the option to curate bespoke activities in any port-of-call, tailored to fit individual needs and requirements. Be it foodie experiences or private tours of local landmarks, no ask is too big for the RockStar Agents. RockStar Agents will tend to their rockstar rider list, digging up whatever their heart may desire to make their voyage perfect– all red gummy bears, an electric guitar and beyond.

The Mega RockStars Suites are primely located on deck 15 of the ship and feature a Peek-A-View outdoor shower. Designed by Tom Dixon’s leading design research studio and inspired by mega yachts and rock and roll style icons like Grace Jones, the Mega RockStar and RockStar Suites offer an unrivalled on board experience.

How All RockStars Will Sail

While all Sailors enjoy unlimited WiFi on board, as part of Virgin Voyages’ new expanded offerings all RockStar Suite Sailors will now enjoy upgraded premium WiFi with streaming.

The new offerings will complement the robust existing benefits of all RockStar Suite Sailors, which include:

  • RockStar Agent support from time from time of booking, to sail away and throughout the voyage
  • Backstage access at every corner, with early access to onboard entertainment, restaurants, Shore Things and more
  • Luxe private transfers to and from the ship in Miami
  • An exclusive express pathway to the ship during embarkation
  • Access to Richard’s Rooftop – RockStar Suite Sailor’s very own VIP private club, a secluded place for them to bask under the sun or have a drink under the stars
  • Access to an exclusive VIP area at The Beach Club at Bimini
  • A fully stocked in-room bar with the first round on the house
  • Wardrobe team to help unpack and repack
  • Complimentary pressing service
  • Nightly express swimsuit drying service
  • Premium linens and a plush European king bed
  • Upgraded bath amenities for pampering

For more information on the Mega RockStar and RockStar Suite offerings, future Sailors and travel partners are invited to check out Virgin Voyages by visitingwww.virginvoyages.com.