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Sunday, May 27, 2012

Plan For Refloating the Costa Concordia.

Costa Concordia Salvage Plan
Costa Concordia Salvage Plan
Recently the plans for re-floating the Costa Concordia were revealed. As you recall the ship hit a rock off an island in Italy in January. This occurred when the captain reportedly took the ship too close to shore to salute island residents.

The Costa Concordia, which is lying on its side is expected to be removed in one piece.
  • The plan calls for building a platform on the sea bottom next to the ship.
  • Attaching two cranes to the platform.
  • The cranes will be used to pull the ship to an upright position.
  • Attached to the ship will be large caissons on the side of the ship currently facing out. The caissons will be filled with water to help offset the weight of the ship while the cranes are pulling to upright the ship.
  •  After the Costa Concordia is resting upright on the new platform, caissons will be place on the opposite side of the ship.
  • The water will be removed from the caissons and filled with air.
  • Any holes in the hull will be patched.
  • The water will be pumped out of the hull and the ship will be afloat again.
  • The Costa Concordia will be towed to a nearby port where she will most-likely be scrapped.
The effort is expected to take a year.

Environmentally, Costa Cruises is stating that the ledge where the ship is currently lying will be restored, any contaminated water treated and any disturbed sea-life  / reefs reconstructed.

TITAN Salvage, a U.S. company owned by Crowley Maritime Group, is a world leader in the recovery of wrecks. Micoperi is an Italian company specializing in underwater construction and engineering, and has many years of experience in the field.

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Saturday, May 26, 2012

Scenic Cruise New River Ship in 2012

Cabin Scenic River Cruises
Cabin Scenic Cruises - European River Cruises.
 Scenic Cruises has announced the commission of a seventh Scenic ‘Space-Ship’ for its European fleet.  To be christened Scenic Jewel, she will undertake her inaugural voyage in 2013 along the Rhine, Main and Danube rivers from Amsterdam to Budapest.  Scenic Jewel joins five other Scenic ‘Space-Ships’ that operate along Europe’s main waterways, including the just launched Scenic Crystal (April 2012).  Another, Scenic Emerald will be relocated and dedicated to Southern France for the 2013 season.

    “2011 was our most successful year to date for European river cruising and 2012 is shaping up to be even stronger, states Scenic Tours Managing Director, Glen Moroney.  “Our 2013 forecast and pre-release sales have demanded the addition of a new Scenic ‘Space-Ship’ as guests look for extra special features and all-inclusive luxury.”

    Focused on building and launching the finest fleet on Europe’s waterways, Scenic Cruises’ ‘Space-Ships’ continue to be ground-breaking.  Designed and built by leading Dutch specialist river cruise shipyard, Den Breejen, the ships were the first river cruisers to offer luxury suites with private full-size balconies.  And with the launch this month (April 2012) of the Scenic Crystal, Glen Moroney says that the unique Scenic ‘Sun-Lounge’ facility on the Crystal and the Scenic Jewel will be retro-fitted to the rest of the fleet (except Scenic Emerald)for 2013.  “Our private balcony suites are the largest of their kind and now boast state-of-the-art technology to convert the balcony to a Scenic ‘Sun-Lounge.’  This remote-activated, hydraulic-sealed glass window, allows our guests to always enjoy the advantage of extra balcony space no matter the time of day or the weather.”

    Renowned interior designer, Heather Buttrose, developed the interiors for both Scenic Jewel and Scenic Crystal.  Her special touches include spacious walk-in showers, larger wardrobes and marble bench tops.  "This project has been immensely rewarding,” she exclaims.  “My aim has been to enhance on board comfort and provide extraordinary finishes and guests can be assured of a truly world class cruising experience.”

    Scenic Jewel will also showcase a number of innovative new technical upgrades including a ‘silent drive’ system, which significantly reduces noise and vibration, and the most sophisticated air conditioning system ever fitted to a river cruiser.

    Scenic Cruises is renowned for all-inclusive luxury European river cruising on board Scenic ‘Space-Ships’, which feature all meals, complimentary beverages during meals, butler service on select decks, on shore excursions, airport transfers, tipping and gratuities.  Its fleet sail river voyages throughout Europe, Russia and Egypt, ranging from seven to 21 nights.  Guests enjoy more public space and also larger staterooms and suites, more than 80% of which offer full-size balconies.  Every room features a queen-sized “Scenic Slumber Bed” complete with fine linens and a pillow menu.

    Scenic Cruises’ parent company, Scenic Tours, offers award-winning, all-inclusive escorted tours in Europe, Australia, New Zealand and elsewhere.  Additional information on these and other cruises, brochures and reservations can be obtained from travel agents; Global Voyages Group, LLC, the United States representative for Scenic Tours and Scenic Cruises;

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Friday, May 25, 2012

The Approach to Venice May Be Changing


Crystal Cruises Ships In Venice's Main Canal
Crystal Cruises Ships In Venice's Main Canal
Based on the Costa Concordia incident, many port are now taking added precautions. One such port is Venice which is now actively working toward dredging an alternative channel which will no longer take ships through the center of the port. 

The picturesque entry into Venice - sailing by Saint Mark's will be a thing of the past. The Port Authority of Venice is now discussing routing the cruise ships into Venice from the South -away from the city, instead of from the East which takes the ships through the center of the city. The new route, which would require dredging, would take the ships from the Lagoon of Venice directly to the Marittima Passenger Terminal by-passing the main city channel. The dredging is expected to take 18 months once approved. 

Options are being evaluated at the prompting of environmentalists and preservation groups, who are concerned about the size of today's ships, the continuing need to dredge the channel through the middle of the city, the wake of the ships and overall safety.

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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Video: Disney Fantasy - New York Maiden Arrival.

Although this happened at the end of February - I still enjoy this video.

See the maiden arrival of Disney Cruise Line's Disney Fantasy on a cold, crisp, February morning. Another fine product of Germany's Meyer Werft.


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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Last Block of Celebrity Cruises New Celebrity Reflection Put in Place

At Meyer Werft Shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, the final building block - the tip of the bow - of the new Celebrity Reflection was  just recently put in place. Her inaugural Caribbean Cruise will be a 3 day voyage from Miami to Coco Cay Bahamas and Nassau in the Bahamas on December 5th, 2012.

She is the final ships in the Solstice class of ship for Celebrity Cruises.


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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Gavin MacLeod Meets Gavin MacLeod on Princess' Island Princess

Gavin MacLeod Meets Gavin MacLeod on Island Princess
Gavin MacLeod Meets Gavin MacLeod on Island Princess
What’s in a name? Well, at Princess Cruises the name Gavin MacLeod naturally is associated with the famous TV captain of “The Love Boat.” But it turns out that the line coincidentally also has a real-life bridge officer with the same name. And the long-time Princess ambassador couldn’t wait to meet him.

When Island Princess Third Officer Gavin MacLeod, who hails from Inverness, Scotland, joined Princess in 2010, he never gave much thought to the fact that he shared a name with the actor who made the role of “Captain Stubing” an iconic part of television history.

But last week when Island Princess called at the port of Los Angeles, the two men met on the ship’s bridge and enjoyed lunch together at Sabatini’s restaurant. The pair also signed several navigational charts to be auctioned for charity.

Frequently filmed aboard Princess ships throughout its 1977-86 run, “The Love Boat” created a lasting legacy in the cruise industry. Actor Gavin MacLeod has continued his association with the cruise line ever since, serving as an ambassador who travels regularly aboard Princess ships and represents the company at a variety of events throughout the year.

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Monday, May 21, 2012

Royal Caribbean 2013 European Deployment Down

Royal Caribbean to Sail 9 Ships in Europe in 2013
Freedom of the Seas to Sail Europe in 2013
Royal Caribbean International has announced that nine ships will sails the 2013 European Cruise Season. This is down from 12 ships sailing this year.

Royal Caribbean International today announced that Legend of the Seas and Vision of the Seas will complete the cruise line’s Europe 2013 deployments, totaling nine Royal Caribbean ships in the region. Legend of the Seas and Vision of the Seas augment already announced U.K.-based Independence of the Seas, Adventure of the Seas and Brilliance of the Seas, Barcelona-based Liberty of the Seas and Serenade of the Seas, and Italy-based Navigator of the Seas and Splendour of the Seas to offer vacationers a sum of 276 sailings to 88 culture-rich ports on 58 exciting Europe itineraries. Legend of the Seas and Vision of the Seas’ Europe 2013 season is open for sale.

Many cruise lines have stated that a slow down in the European Economy and outrageous transatlantic airfares have many cruise lines significantly discounting European cruises to fill the ships. Reports indicate that increased airfares during the summer months, especially July, have bookings light.

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Sunday, May 20, 2012

1.4 Million People Turn Out to See Inaugural of AIDAmar and Parade of AIDA Ships


AIDA Ships Rendezvous For AIDAmar Naming
AIDA Ships Rendezvous For AIDAmar Naming
The latest cruise ship of the AIDA fleet – AIDAmar – was inaugurated on the evening of May 12, 2012 with an extravaganza at the Port of Hamburg, accompanied by her three sister ships. A total of 1.4 million guests attended the Port of Hamburg’s 823rd anniversary celebrations.

“The Port of Hamburg’s anniversary celebrations have set new standards with the world’s largest ship’s inauguration ceremony for AIDAmar. Hundreds of thousands of people attended the evening between the Grasbrookkai and the Fischauktionshalle. Thanks to the spectacular ceremony for AIDAmar, Saturday was also, in terms of visitor numbers, one of the busiest days ever in the history of the Port of Hamburg anniversary celebrations”, estimated Dietrich von Albedyll, Chairman of the Board at Hamburg Tourismus GmbH.

The cabins on board the four ships from the AIDA fleet had all been sold out far in advance, with more than 10,000 AIDA guests on the River Elbe to experience the event live. After the inauguration, the night sky above the Port of Hamburg was lit up by a spectacular firework display.

“Hundreds of thousands of people watching the inauguration of AIDAmar in Hamburg have experienced how fascinating and attractive cruise holidays can be. The huge public interest underlines the excellent prospects for the future of our growth sector”, said Michael Thamm, CEO-designate of the Costa Group and spokesman for the international cruise industry in Germany.

The visitors in Hamburg were able to experience the inauguration spectacular at first hand via two large LED screens, with hundreds of thousands of viewers around the world following the christening live on the Internet.

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Friday, May 18, 2012

Holland America Signature of Excellence Stats


Holland America Statendam
Holland America Statendam
I happened to come across an older issue of Holland America's Mariner Magazine. In there I found some interesting stats on the Signature of Excellence enhancements that were conducted on the Statendam Class of ships.   

Here is some insight as to what is involved with a refit/conversion. The stats quoted are per ship (unless otherwise specified).

  • 600 tons of steel was added.
  • 3,250 new bathroom mirrors installed.
  • 12,600 new pillows fluffed.
  • 25,200 new lightbulbs added.
  • 78,750 new tiles installed in wet areas.
  • 320,000 Sq feet of new carpeting.
  • 280,000 feet of electrical cables.
  • 28 Days duration for renovations.
  • 39 Lanai Staterooms added on the Rotterdam.
  • 2.3 Million Labor Hours spent on renovating the 5 ships.

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Thursday, May 17, 2012

Interested in Cruising on a Traditional Real Working Cargo Ship?

MV Trinity Bay of SeaSwift
MV Trinity Bay of SeaSwift
Interested in Cruising on a Traditional Real Working Cargo Ship?

There are a number of options - but here is a unique one.... The MV Trinity Bay of SeaSwift.

Their website www.seaswift.com.au says.........

The MV Trinity Bay is an 81m-long working cargo vessel, built in South Korea in 1996 and frequently refitted. Its principal purpose is to carry freight between Cairns and Seisia at the tip of Cape York, via Horn Island and Thursday Island. It is the only working cargo vessel in Australia that also carries passengers, with a total of 48 berths over 15 cabins.
.
The distance between Cairns and the Tip of Cape York is about 1,000km. The MV Trinity Bay
travels inside the reef with land in sight for most of the way. It has a maximum speed of 13.5knots. There is generally little movement, although conditions will vary.

The MV Trinity Bay carries up to 38 passengers per week on its voyage from Cairns to Cape York, including visits to Horn Island, Thursday Island and Bamaga.
Its features include:
  • Fully air conditioned
  • Private ensuite cabins
  • Shared facility cabins
  • Licensed bar
  • Buffet meals
  • Credit card facilities.
We are a fully locally-owned and operated company established in 1998. We cruise 48 weeks of the year from Cairns north to the Torres Strait Islands, and provide the most unique cruising experience of your life. The MV Trinity Bay is a working cargo ship with passenger amenities. It’s the only working cargo/passenger ship in Australasia and its the only cruise ship based in Cairns. The Trinity Bay is truly one of Cairns and Australia’s best kept secrets. The M.V Trinity Bay has 16 cabins and is very often booked out 12 months in advance– so make sure to book early and tick this totally unique adventure off your bucket list!


The MV Trinity Bay operates a weekly service between Cairns and Seisia Wharf (Bamaga).

Voyage itinerary

  • Friday – Departs Cairns late afternoon, with passenger boarding at 1.30pm. Before departure, passengers receive a full briefing from the purser.
  • Saturday – At sea. Tour of wheel house with the ship’s Master (dependent on conditions). During the trip, passengers can expect to see coral cays, islands, rugged coastlines, other vessels, lighthouses and the possibility of whales in season (June to September).
  • Sunday morning – Arrives at Horn Island to transfer freight. Passengers have the option of partaking in a tour of the island (dependent on conditions).
  • Sunday afternoon – Arrives at Thursday Island to transfer cargo. Some passengers will leave us here and new passengers may join us. Those staying on can enjoy time at leisure on the island or partake in an optional tour (dependent on conditions).
  • Monday morning – Arrives at Seisia Wharf to transfer cargo. Some passengers will leave us here. Those staying on can enjoy time at leisure or partake in an optional tour to the Tip of Cape York (dependent on conditions). New passengers will join us for the southbound journey.
  • Monday – Departs Seisia (Bamaga) for travel directly to Cairns. Departure time will depend on tides.
  • Tuesday – At sea.
  • Wednesday – Arrives in Cairns. Arrival time depends on conditions.
SeaSwift Video on the MV Trinity Bay -  Video: MV Trinity Bay Passenger Cruise on Queensland Weekender
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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Panama Canal Expansion to Impact the Container and Cruise Industry

New Maersk Line 18,000 TEU Container Ship Currently Under Construction
New Maersk Line 18,000 TEU Container Ship Currently Under Construction
Off Topic, the Panama Canal is undergoing a major expansion project costing some $5.25 billion dollars. the project will allow container ships in excess of 12,500 Twenty Foot Equivalent Units (TEU) to use the canal. Today the limit is about 4,400 TEU container ships.

The increase capacity of the canal will shift major container traffic from West Coast port to US East and Gulf ports.

For the cruise industry this means that the Mega-Cruise ships from today may not need to make the 7,800 mile circumnavigation of the South America (from San Francisco to New York). Imagine the transit costs for the Queen Mary 2 to pass through the Canal!

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Tuesday, May 15, 2012

New Emissions Regulations Cause Cruise Lines to Scramble

Cruise Lines Concerned Over Sulfur Emission Regulations
Cruise Lines Concerned Over Sulfur Emission Regulations
New rules being put in place in August will start to require cruise ships to use special low-sulfur emission fuels. The new rules require cruise ships to reduce sulfur emissions to 10,000 parts per million by August 1st, 2012. Over the next 8 years, there are more target reductions, eventually getting the sulfur emissions to 500 parts per million by 2020.  These emission levels are only being monitored within 200 miles of the US East Coast and Canada.

Cruise lines are especially concerned about the availability of the specialized fuel in all refueling ports, the cost of the fuel and the refitting of special fuel tanks so the ships can burn the expensive fuel close to US/Canada ports and the less clean fuel further out to sea.


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Monday, May 14, 2012

Paul Gauguin Cruises Perpares for the Terre Moana

Renovated Tere Moana will start sailing for Paul Gauguin in late December.
Renovated Tere Moana will start sailing for Paul Gauguin in late December.
Paul Gauguin Cruise is preparing for the arrival of their second intimate cruise ship - The Tere Moana. Tere Moana translated means "Ocean Voyager". The ship was purchased from Compagnie du Ponant and leased back to them for the European Season and is currently operating as the LeLevant. In October, the 90 passenger upscale vessel will be deliverer to Paul Gauguin.

The Terre Moana will undergo a refit before sailing on her maiden New Year's cruise on December 29th 2012 from St. Maarten.

For the winter season the Terre Moana will sail the Caribbean, Latin America, Costa Rica and the Panama Canal .

In April 2013, she will set sail for Europe and operate in the Mediterranean, Adriatic and Black Sea.

As pictured the ship will receive a new paint scheme.

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Sunday, May 13, 2012

Disney Cruise Line's Disney Wonder Maiden Hawaii Call


Disney Wonder In Hawaii - Disney Cruise Line -
Disney Wonder In Hawaii - Disney Cruise Line - Photographer Kent Phillip
On May 6th the Disney Wonder called on Honolulu, Hawaii for the first-time, sailing past iconic Diamond Head and Waikiki Beach. The Disney Wonder is in the middle of a special 15-night Hawaiian cruise with stops in Hilo, Hawaii; Kahului, Maui; Honolulu, Oahu; Nawiliwili, Kauai and Ensenada, Mexico. Disney Cruise Line is offering a second 14-night Hawaiian voyage that will depart from the Port of Los Angeles on October 14, 2012. (Kent Phillips, photographer)
 
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Saturday, May 12, 2012

Interesting Amenity Onboard the New Celebrity Reflection.

Amenities onboard Celebrity Cruises Celebrity Reflection
OK just when you thought you heard it all. One of the latest amenities onboard
Celebrity Cruises new Celebrity Reflection is found in some of its suites.

The Suite has a shower which hangs over the side of the ship and is completely surrounded by glass including the floor.

Reportedly the glass is all reflective and guests can see out, while others cannot see in. Only time will tell how popular this proves to be.

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Friday, May 11, 2012

Small Ship Wilderness Explorer and Safari Endeavour Refit and Christening

InnerSea Discoveries' Wilderness Explorer Refit and Naming
InnerSea Discoveries' Wilderness Explorer Refit and Naming
Sporting new hull colors, interior spaces, furnishings and amenities, the 86-guest Safari Endeavour and 76-guest Wilderness Explorer emerge from major renovation projects on May 18, 2012 for a dual-boat christening event in Seattle and a summer season of un-cruise adventures in Alaska. I

In true maritime tradition, both boats will be welcomed into the fleet with a crack of champagne across the bow at a gathering of company executives, employees, friends and family on Friday, May 18, 2012. The 5:30 pm christening event is open to the public and will be held outside office headquarters at Seattle’s Fishermen’s Terminal.

The 86-guest Safari Endeavour joins American Safari Cruises’ upscale fleet of yachts—all with navy blue hulls and exceptional comfort and refined atmosphere on board. The guest capacity has been reduced from 102 to 86 guests with a mix of twin (some convertible) and king beds. During renovation, four Commodore Suites were created by merging eight former staterooms and adding new step-out balconies and Jacuzzi tubs. Four more stateroom categories include three Masters, 21 Commanders, 12 Captains and three Admirals, all with one or two outside view windows.  All rooms have flatscreen TVs/DVDs and iPod docks.


The 76-guest Wilderness Explorer, now painted with InnerSea Discoveries’ signature forest green hull, joins the active adventure fleet in Alaska this summer. During a seven-month renovation, refinements were made throughout the vessel. Staterooms were refreshed with new décor, linens, flatscreen TVs/DVDs and iPod docks. Three cabin categories consist of 21 Trailblazer, 13 Pathfinder and 4 Explorer cabins. Bed configurations include twin or queen with many more made convertible during renovation. In the lounge bar, guests will find eight microbrews and two Proletariat wines on tap. A new buffet in the dining room will streamline meal service usually held buffet-style to ensure maximum flexibility with adventure activities. Other shipboard amenities include complimentary on-deck yoga classes, a large resource library, well-stocked DVD library and board games.  A professional masseuse is part of the crew and massages are available for a fee.

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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Keel Laid for Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Breakaway

Keel Laying for Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Breakaway
Keel Laying for Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Breakaway
In Papenburg Germany, on May 4th, at Meyer Werft Shipyard, the keel was laid for Norwegian Cruise Line's newest ship - the Norwegian Breakaway. In just under a year, the shipyard will assemble the great ship just in time for her maiden overnight voyage from Rotterdam, Netherlands to England on April 28, 2013. Norwegian Breakaway is the first ship being built by Meyer Werft utilizing a more efficient construction process which will deliver a ship of more than 140,000 gross tons in less than 12 months.

Norwegian Breakaway - Norwegian Cruise Line
Norwegian Breakaway - Norwegian Cruise Line

During the official ceremony, the first of 73 blocks that will comprise the 144,000 gross ton vessel was lifted into the covered building dock, marking the start of the block assembly.

In the dock, Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line’s chief executive officer, laid the traditional "lucky coin," before the 350-ton first block was placed by the 800-ton crane. A special commemorative coin was created to celebrate the day’s activities.

On April 30th 2013, the Norwegian Breakaway will set sail on a 7-day transatlantic voyage from London to New York.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Paul Gauguin Cruises New Acquisition Tere Moana To Set Sail on December 29.

Paul Gauguin Cruises New Tere Moana
Paul Gauguin Cruises New Tere Moana
On December 29, 2012, the m/v Tere Moana sets sail on a leisurely, week-long Caribbean voyage--her first as the newest ship under the Paul Gauguin Cruises banner. The intimate, 90-guest ship will have just completed a multifaceted renovation and will offer you the ultimate in quality, luxury, and all-inclusive value. The exterior of the ship will be painted white (currently her hull is a dark color) enhancing the ship's yacht like profile.

The 7-night voyage sails round-trip from St. Martin, and explores islands both sophisticated and unspoiled in the British Virgin Islands, the French West Indies, and St. Kitts & Nevis.

Guest hosting the voyage will be Paul Gauguin Cruises Chairman Richard Bailey and his wife (also the Godmother of The Moana) Mireille Bailey. A leader in the field of sustainable tourism and environmental responsibility, Mr. Bailey will host a special cocktail party and "town hall" meeting during the voyage. Guests who join us on this inaugural voyage will also be invited to participate in a special christening ceremony for the ship.

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Monday, May 7, 2012

Could the Titanic II be on the Horizon

The Original White Star Liner Titanic
The Original White Star Liner Titanic
With all of the commotion around the Titanic's 100th Anniversary. Last week Australian mining magnate Clive Palmer announced plans to build a fleet of luxury liners, including a 21st century version of Titanic. Palmer stated that a Memorandum of Understanding is currently in place with the CSC Jinling Shipyard, to build Titanic II. 'Titanic II will be as similar as possible to its predecessor in design and specifications, but with modern technology.

The CSC Jinling Shipyard is a state owned shipyard with a history of building ship - but this would be their first venture into the cruise industry.

The new Titanic II is expected to operate under a newly formed company called Blue Star Line Pty. The maiden voyage is anticipated in late 2016 and will be a transatlantic voyage from Southampton to New York.

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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Venus to Operate Out of Israel in 2012

Rio Cruises - Rio Now Venus
Rio - Courtesy of Rio Cruises
Reports out of Israel indicate that the Rio is returning to Israel under the name Venus and will operate a series of cruises for Venus Cruise Line starting around May 14th, 2012.

Interesting enough the Rio was sold last year after Rio Cruises ran into financial troubles. Rio Cruises was linked to Israel's Caspi Cruises. The ship was sold for about $5.5 million dollars. Supposedly the new owners are once again linked to Caspi Cruises.

The Venus is said to be undergoing technical and interior upgrades in Piraeus.

The Venus was originally constructed as Norwegian Caribbean's Soutward. She then operated as the Seawing for AirTours, the Perla, Aegean Pearl and the Aegean Pearl under Louis Cruise Line ownership and then the Rio for Rio / Caspi Cruises.

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Saturday, May 5, 2012

Ponant Names Newest Ship

Compagnie du Ponant - Le Soleal
Compagnie du Ponant - Le Soleal
 Compagnie du Ponant has chosen the name LE Soleal for it's newest ship which is currently under construction. The $134 million dollar ship is currently under construction at Fincantieri Shipyard in Italy and is expected to enter service in July 2013.

The literal translation of the name is "The Sun" and she will join her sisters  Le Boréal (2010) and L’Austral (2011). She will extend the luxury yacht concept of Ponant and will carry 264 passengers in luxury.

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Friday, May 4, 2012

Oceania Cruise's New Riviera Sets Sail from Shipyard.

On May 2nd 2012, Oceania Cruises Riveria left the Finacantieri  Sestri Ponente shipyard in Genoa. The ship is an almost identical sister to the Marina which was delivered about 2 years ago.

 Riviera will be christened by godmother Cat Cora in Barcelona on May 11.

The Riviera's maiden 10-day voyage is set for May 16, from Venice to Athens on a Pearls of the Aegean Cruise.

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Oceania Cruises Takes Delivery of the New Riviera

Oceania Cruises Takes Ownership of Riviera From Fincantieri
Oceania Cruises Takes Ownership of Riviera From Fincantieri
On April 27, 2012, Oceania Cruises took delivery today of its new 1,250-guest Riviera at Fincantieri's Sestri Ponente shipyard near Genoa. The line's newest entry to the upper-premium cruise segment comes just 15 months following the launch of her highly acclaimed sister ship, Marina.

"The handover of Riviera represents a milestone achievement thanks to the loyalty of our guests, our strong partnership with the travel agent community and the dedication of every member of the Oceania Cruises family," stated Kunal S. Kamlani, the line's president.

The newest addition to Oceania Cruises' expanding fleet of mid-sized ships, the 66,172-ton Riviera is purpose-built to engage and inspire epicureans with 10 dining venues, including Jacques, the namesake restaurant of the world-renowned Master Chef Jacques Pépin. The ship also boasts a Bon Appétit Culinary Center for hands-on learning and La Reserve by Wine Spectator, a professional facility for wine tastings and pairing dinners.

In just 14 days, on May 11 in Barcelona, Riviera will be officially christened, presided over by godmother Cat Cora, a master chef, restaurateur, humanitarian, author, and co-host of Bravo's new "Around the World in 80 Plates." Riviera departs on her 10-day maiden voyage from Venice to Athens on May 16, 2012. From May 16 through November 29, 2012, she will offer a total of 20 Mediterranean voyages, calling at ports in France, Italy, Greece, Spain, Portugal and Turkey as well as Israel, Croatia, Cyprus, Montenegro, Morocco and Monaco, with maiden calls in Cephalonia (Argostoli), Motril (Granada) and La Palma, Canary Islands.

Oceania Cruises took delivery today of its new 1,250-guest Riviera at Fincantieri's Sestri Ponente shipyard near Genoa. The line's newest entry to the upper-premium cruise segment comes just 15 months following the launch of her highly acclaimed sister ship, Marina.

"The handover of Riviera represents a milestone achievement thanks to the loyalty of our guests, our strong partnership with the travel agent community and the dedication of every member of the Oceania Cruises family," stated Kunal S. Kamlani, the line's president.

The newest addition to Oceania Cruises' expanding fleet of mid-sized ships, the 66,172-ton Riviera is purpose-built to engage and inspire epicureans with 10 dining venues, including Jacques, the namesake restaurant of the world-renowned Master Chef Jacques Pépin. The ship also boasts a Bon Appétit Culinary Center for hands-on learning and La Reserve by Wine Spectator, a professional facility for wine tastings and pairing dinners.

In just 14 days, on May 11 in Barcelona, Riviera will be officially christened, presided over by godmother Cat Cora, a master chef, restaurateur, humanitarian, author, and co-host of Bravo's new "Around the World in 80 Plates." Riviera departs on her 10-day maiden voyage from Venice to Athens on May 16, 2012. From May 16 through November 29, 2012, she will offer a total of 20 Mediterranean voyages, calling at ports in France, Italy, Greece, Spain, Portugal and Turkey as well as Israel, Croatia, Cyprus, Montenegro, Morocco and Monaco, with maiden calls in Cephalonia (Argostoli), Motril (Granada) and La Palma, Canary Islands.

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Thursday, May 3, 2012

My Dream Last Night.

I do not usually dream and when I do - the dreams are not normally about ships and I usually do not remember them. Last night was the exception.

I had a dream that I was in Hoboken, NJ on the waterfront and the Michelangelo and Raffaello were in port. It was supposed to be their last departure from the port. I walked out on a wooden pier and there in the middle of the Hudson River was the Raffaello. The ship was totally lite-up and was sailing down the river at decent speed.
Michelangelo / Raffaello - Italian Line
Michelangelo / Raffaello - Italian Line

I reached for my camera and did not have it. The only camera I had was my cell phone which could not take pictures in the dark. Frustrated, I ran to my imaginary apartment in Hoboken, which was rundown and small. I was frantically looking for my camera hoping to get a photo of the Michelangelo which was scheduled to leave shortly. After finding my camera, I ran back to the river and the old wooden pier but the Michelangelo was gone.  Frustrated, I woke up from my dream annoyed.

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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises Introduces Columbus 2

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises Columbus 2
Hapag-Lloyd Cruises Columbus 2
Hapag-Lloyd Cruises christened their newest addition to the fleet, the Columbus 2 on April 17, 2012. After a short refit in Barcelona the Columbus 2 was ready for Hapag-Lloyd service. Children and Teen facilities were added to the ship in order to tap in the German Family market.

The Columbus 2 previously sailed for Oceania Cruises and is under a 2 year charter agreement with Hapag-Lloyd. There is an option for an extension on the charter should Hapag-Lloyd decide to utilize the ship longer.

The first cruise sailed from Mallorca to Malta.

The Columbus 2 has 11 decks and 349 cabins. She can  accommodate a maximum of 698 passengers.

The Columbus 2 will offer an upscale cruising experience.

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Tuesday, May 1, 2012

American Cruise Line's Queen of the Mississippi Completes Her Sea Trials

Queen of the Mississippi - American Cruise Line
Queen of the Mississippi - American Cruise Line
American Cruise Line's New Queen of the Mississippi completed her sea trials earlier this month. The Queen of the Mississippi is being constructed at the Chesapeake Shipbuilding Yard in Salisburg, MD.

The Queen of the Mississippi is expected to be completed in May. Her maiden voyage will be on August 11, 2012 from New Orleans to Memphis, Tennessee.

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