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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Norwegian Cruise Line Unveils New Class of Ships

Artist Rendering of Norwegian Cruise Line's New Leonardo Class Vessel Debuting in 2020
Artist Rendering of Norwegian Cruise Line's New Leonardo Class Vessel Debuting in 2020

Norwegian Cruise Line's New Leonardo Class Vessel From Italy's Fincantieri Shipyard.
Norwegian Cruise Line's New Leonardo Class Vessel From Italy's Fincantieri Shipyard.

Norwegian Cruise Line unveiled their latest class of cruise ships - the Leonardo Class. Resembling MSC Cruises' latest newbuild the MSC Seaside, the ship features an inverted bow and a funnel placed mid-ship. The rear of the ship resembles hotel towers soaring vertically. There is a 2 deck  wrap around lounge / Restaurant  near the stern of the ship.

The order consists of a firm order for 4 ships and an option for 2 additional ships. The first ship is expected in 2020. The ships are expected to be in the 140,000 ton range and carry 3,000 passengers double occupancy.

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Monday, March 27, 2017

Oasia On Way to Scrappers.

The Stately Vistafjord as originally constructed for Norwegian America Line.Oasia, Caronia, Saga Ruby, Saga Cruises, Curnard
The Stately Vistafjord as originally constructed for Norwegian America Line.

The Oasia - Ex Saga Ruby is on her way to scrappers.

Originally built as the upscale cruise-ship Vistafjord for Norwegian America Line in 1974, the ship has sailed a very successful career. When Norwegian America Line was purchased by Cunard Line the ship became Cunard's Caronia. She was subsequently sold to Saga Cruises and renamed Saga Ruby. I had the opportunity to visit the ship on a visit to New York and I found the ship to be elegant and the decor utilized extensive wood, giving the ship a stately manor feel.

In January 2014, the ship was sold to the Oasia Group and was intended to be re-purposed as a stationary hotel in Thailand. Unfortunately that was not to be, with the ship spending the next 3 years dockside at a military pier and offshore anchored awaiting activation and upgrading.

As of today, the ship is on the move, on her way to India for scrapping. She is expected to arrive at Alang, India on April 4th, 2017. Tracking shows the ship to have sailed through the straits of Malacca and is now positioned between the tip of Indonesia and Cape of India. The ship is now registered in St.Kitts and Nevis.

 Related Links - Free Information on Cruises Departing from New York and New Jersey.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Fincantieri Has Keel Laying Ceremony for Holland America's Nieuw Amsterdam.

Rendering of Holland America's New Nieuw Statendam Entering Serving in the Fall of 2018.

The keel laying ceremony for Holland America's latest ship of the Konnigsdam class was laid at Italy's Fincantieri Marghera,Shipyard. The section, which measured 37 feet X 114 feet and weighed in at over 260 tons, was securely placed in the bottom of the drydock. The 99,800 ton Nieuw Statendam is expected to enter service in the fall of 2018.

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Thursday, March 23, 2017

Sunstone Ships Signs Deal With Chinese Shipyard for 4 New Exploration Vessels - Opton For 6 Others.

Artists Rendering of SunStone's New Class of Expedition Ships.
Artists Rendering of SunStone's New Class of Expedition Ships.

SUNSTONE SHIPS, INC. and CHINA MERCHANTS INDUSTRY HOLDINGS CO., LTD. have signed a Framework Agreement for the construction of four expedition vessels with options for an additional six vessels.

SunStone is the largest tonnage provider of expedition vessels to the cruise and travel industry, with an existing fleet of ten small cruise vessels on charter to companies within the expedition market, and this new order positions the Company as the leading tonnage provider in this segment of the cruise industry.

CMIH is part of the China Merchants Group formed in 1872 and one of the largest groups of companies in China, including the China Merchants Bank, one of the 20 largest banks in the world.

CMIH has entered into an agreement with Ulstein Design & Solutions, who will supply the vessel’s design and equipment package, as well as the supervision for the building of the vessels.
Celebrating its 100th Anniversary this year, Ulstein Group is a well known international designer, builder and provider of ship system solutions. The family-owned group is headquartered in Ulsteinvik, Norway, and encompasses over 600 employees in six countries.
CMIH has also entered into an agreement with Mäkinen, Finland, one of the leading contractors of cabin and interior public spaces for cruise vessels. Mäkinen will establish a cabin assembly plant and interior workshop at the shipyard’s facilities, and will be responsible for all interior spaces on the new builds.

The vessels’ main specifications are as follows:

Passenger cabins                       80 – 95              
Length                                        104m                
Width                                         18.2m              
Draft                                           5.1m                
Speed                                         15-knots          
Class                                           Ice Classed 1A
Polar Code                                 PC 6                
Classification Society                 Bureau Veritas
Flag                                             Bahamas          

The vessels will be part of the SunStone Fleet and chartered to new and existing clients. The combination of five companies in this project with each having vast experience within their market, makes for the building of highly advanced and quality expedition vessels.

The hotel design of our new fleet, will be done by Tomas Tillberg Design International, one of the most recognized names in the passenger vessel design world. The firm has been working with us in the development of our designs, not only for our new fleet project, but also with ongoing projects for many years on our existing fleet.

The project was brought together by Tillberg & Reyes Group Co. Ltd., who acted as broker. Mr. Carlos Reyes and Mr. Andrew Zhang, developed the commercial and financial models as well as the communications and relationship with everyone involved. Mäkinen is an internationally recognized turn- key contractor for the Marine and Hotel industries. Their services include building new and refurbishing existing cabins, wet units and public spaces.

Mäkinen was founded in 1992 and it has completed over 5000 successful projects for the most significant cruise lines and shipyards.

Mäkinen will be responsible for all of the interiors for SunStone’s newbuilding project. In order for Mäkinen to secure the high quality service, they will move a project team to China and set up factory facilities at the shipyard.

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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

WATCH IT WEDNESDAY LIVE - Steel Cutting Ceremony For Virgin Voyager Live on Facebook.

Artist Rendering of Virgin Cruise's New Ship. - Steel Cutting Ceremony Today!

Watch it live Wednesday - 3/22/2017 - the Steel Cutting Ceremony for Virgin Voyages first cruise ship. The ceremony will be streamed live on Facebook from Italy's Fincantieri Shipyard.

The live broadcast is set for 2 p.m. EDT Wednesday on Virgin Voyages' Facebook page.

Link to Virgin Voyages Facebook Page

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Monday, March 20, 2017

Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Pearl Emerges From Refit.

Cagney's Steakhouse On Board Norwegian Cruise Line's Newly Refit Norwegian Pearl
Cagney's Steakhouse On Board Norwegian Cruise Line's Newly Refit Norwegian Pearl

 On February 27th, 2017, Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Pearl sailed into her seasonal homeport of Miami  following a two week dry dock where every stateroom and many of the ship’s public areas were revitalized to provide a fresh modern look. Norwegian Pearl’s extensive renovation is a part of The Norwegian Edge™, an investment program that sets a high standard of excellence for the Norwegian brand, encompassing the entire guest experience.

“Norwegian Pearl is one of our most beloved ships. With this dry dock we wanted to provide her with a refreshed, clean and modern onboard atmosphere while maintaining the ship’s overall charm and flexibility that our guests enjoy so much,” said Andy Stuart, Norwegian Cruise Line president and chief executive officer. “Through The Norwegian Edge™ program we are continuing to heavily invest in our fleet to ensure that guests have a consistent experience across all Norwegian ships and the freedom to create their ideal cruise vacation.”

            Every one of Norwegian Pearl’s 1,197 staterooms was touched in this dry dock modernization. All accommodations received a completely refreshed look with cool blue hues reminiscent of the calming ocean with silver and turquoise accents. Each stateroom features new furniture, new carpeting, new headboards, new televisions as well as the addition of USB outlets where guests can charge their handheld devices. Across the ship, more than 2,200 pieces of art work were installed for guests to enjoy in their staterooms as well as in Cagney’s Restaurant and The Haven.

Guests who sail in The Haven by Norwegian®, Norwegian’s signature ship-within-a-ship luxury suite complex, aboard Norwegian Pearl will now enjoy a completely refurbished Haven Courtyard creating an incredible atmosphere for soaking in the sun with new finishes on the decks, pool and hot tubs as well as new furniture including the addition of new cabanas, making for a chic resort-style experience. The Haven’s suites and villas also received extensive modernizations with new wall paper, new furniture, new finishes on the ceilings and balconies, new carpets, new drapery and artwork.

Cagney’s Steakhouse, one of Norwegian Pearl’s most popular Freestyle Dining venues, received fresh new upgrades to carpet, artwork, furniture upholstery and window treatments. Norwegian Pearl guests can now enjoy as many decadent cuts of meat and seafood as their heart may desire in a more elegant and modern setting at Moderno Churrascaria, which now features new tables and chairs, wall laminates, new granite bar tops in the restaurant’s bar and salad bar areas and a new crisp glass-door entrance. Guests looking for a pub-style experience can now enjoy a more comfortable and relaxed atmosphere at O’Sheehan’s Bar & Grill with modern flooring and an entirely refurbished bar featuring new granite tops, bar back shelving, new ceiling and lighting fixtures, new wall finishes throughout the restaurant, along with fresh tables and chairs as well as newly added banquet seating for larger parties to enjoy.

Norwegian Pearl’s famed pool deck, where guests congregate to bask in the sun or dance the night away, now features fresh flooring and paint as well as refurbished whirlpools. The Great Outdoors bar as well as Sky High bar both received new flooring with Sky High Bar also receiving an overall refreshed look, including new tables, chairs, bar stools and a new bar façade.

Norwegian Pearl is currently sailing from Miami through April, offering a variety of itineraries including round-trip sailings through the Panama Canal and itineraries to the Western Caribbean. In the summer months, Norwegian Pearl will sail her incredibly popular seven-day cruises to the glacier-filled waters of Alaska from Seattle featuring calls in Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan and Victoria, British Columbia.

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Friday, March 17, 2017

Construction Officially Begins on Hurtigruten New Build - Roald Amundsen

Hurtigruten Cruises - Roald Amundsen currently under Constructions at Kleven Shipyard
Artists Rendering of Hurtigruten Cruises - Roald Amundsen currently under Constructions at Kleven Shipyard- Photo Courtesy of Hurtigruten.
On February 23, 2017, Hurtigruten marked the official start of construction of its new class of Explorer-class ships as company at the Kleven Shipyard in Norway.
Steel was cut for the first of two ships, the Roald Amundsen, which enters service in summer 2018. A sister ship will follow in 2019. In addition, an option for the construction of  two additional 20,000-ton, 600-passenger vessels is pending and may be acted upon in the next year.

The cost of the ships is estimated at $220 million each.

The new ships are expected to operate upscale exploration cruises to exotic polar destinations including Norway, the Arctic and Antarctica,

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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Meyer Weft Shipyard Cuts Steel on AIDA Cruises' First LNG-Powered Cruise Ship

AIDA Cruises' LNG Helios Class vessel under construction at Meyer Werft Shipyard
Artists Rendering of Costa Cruises Newbuild - expected to resemble AIDA's new LNG Cruise Vessel

On February 21, 2017, Meyer Werft cut steel  for the first of two, next-generation, AIDA Cruise ships that will run completely on liquefied natural gas. The new class of ship, know as the Helios-Class, will weigh in at 183,900gt and is scheduled for delivery in December of 2018. Her first cruise is expected to sail to the Canary Islands. The 2018 newbuild is expected to be the 13th ship in the AIDA fleet.

A second LNG vessel is expected in the spring 2021.

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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Norwegian Cruise Line to Design Second Vessel For Chinese Market.

Norwegian Cruise Line to dedicate second Cruise Vessel to the Chinese Market in 2019 from Meyer Werft Shipyard.
Artists Rendering of the Norwegian Joy - Second Ship to Follow in 2019

Based on the success of Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Joy in the Chinese Market, Norwegian Cruise Line has announced that their final Breakway-Plus vessel will be geared toward the Chinese cruise market as well.

The final 164,600 ton Breakaway-Plus vessel is scheduled to be delivered in 2019 and carry 4000 passengers. The new ship is expected to sail along-side the Norwegian Joy - which is expected to be delivered this summer.

Strong bookings for the Norwegian Joy is driving further dedication of a second new ship to the Chinese Market.

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Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Saga Cruises Unveils Artists Rendings Of Their New Ship.

Artists Rendering of Saga Cruises' 2019 New Build From Meyer's Werft.
Artists Rendering of Saga Cruises' 2019 New Build From Meyer's Werft.

Scheduled to arrive in the Summer of 2019 - UK's Saga Cruises is unveiling some details around their new ship which is under construction at the Meyer Werft Shipyard. The 540 stateroom ship, will carry of less than 1,000 passengers with many accommodations being singles.

The unnamed ship - which Saga is referring to internally as "Project Olympic" -- will include two specialty restaurants, main dining room, and a Britannia Lounge. The 55,900-ton ship will also have an indoor and outdoor pool; library, spa and beauty salon.

In the upcoming months, Saga will be unveiling more details.

Saga Cruises Primarily caters to the 50+ age group offering an adult only experience.

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Monday, March 13, 2017

Carnival Cruises' Carnival Sensation Returns From Extensive Refit.

Carnival Cruises - Carnival Sensation Emerges From Extensive Refit.

Carnival Sensation has undergone a multi-million-dollar renovation and emerged with a variety of popular food and beverage concepts, as well as a new nautical-themed children’s play area. 

Following the two-week-long dry dock, which took place in Freeport, The Bahamas, the 2,052-passenger Carnival Sensation today resumed its year-round schedule of four- and five-day cruises from Miami.  Carnival Sensation is the third Carnival ship to undergo a refurbishment this year with Carnival Dream and Carnival Ecstasy receiving new spaces, as well.  

Here’s a look at the new spaces now available on Carnival Sensation:
·         Guy’s Burger Joint: a free-of-charge poolside venue developed in partnership with Food Network personality Guy Fieri serving hand-crafted burgers and fresh-cut fries enjoyed amidst a décor that celebrates the chef’s California roots and love of car culture.
·         RedFrog Rum Bar: a poolside watering hole offering the quintessential Caribbean vacation vibe with refreshing Caribbean rum-based frozen drinks and beers, including Carnival’s own private label draught brew, ThirstyFrog Red. 
·         BlueIguana Cantina: a complimentary poolside Mexican eatery where guests can enjoy authentic, freshly made burritos and tacos on homemade tortillas, as well as an elaborate toppings and salsa bar.
·         Alchemy Bar: a “cocktail pharmacy”-themed lounge with mixologists who “prescribe” concoctions from different elixirs and ingredients with creative monikers like Forty is the New Twenty and The Restorative Basil Drop.
·         Cherry On Top: the “sweetest spot on board” which celebrates the joys of simple indulgences with bins of bulk candy, fun fanciful gifts and novelties, custom apparel and more.
·         BlueIguana Tequila Bar: a fun and festive outdoor bar offering a laid-back Mexican-themed atmosphere and tequila-based frozen drinks and beers, perfect for chillin’ by the pool.
·         Camp Ocean:  a colorful marine-inspired play area designed for kids ages 2-11 that showcases the wonders of the sea through fun and engaging interiors and more than 200 ocean-themed activities, including arts and crafts, science-oriented  programming, and more.
Carnival Sensation’s year-round schedule from Miami includes four-day cruises to Cozumel departing Thursdays that visit Nassau and the private Bahamian destinations of Half Moon Cay or Princess Cays or Cozumel and Key West, or five-day voyages departing Mondays and Saturdays calling at Grand Turk, Nassau and Half Moon Cay or Grand Turk and Amber Cove in the Dominican Republic.

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Friday, March 10, 2017

Deliver of Star Clipper's New Flying Clipper Delayed.

Star Clipper's Newest Ship the Flyer Clipper Currently Being Built at Brodosplit Shipyard, Croatia
Star Clipper's Newest Ship the Flyer Clipper Currently Being Built at Brodosplit Shipyard, Croatia

Star Clipper's newest sailing ship / cruise ship's delivery will be delayed from August 2017 to the first quarter of 2018. The new ship will be named the Flying Clipper and is currently under construction in Croatia at the Brodosplit Shipyard. No reason was provided for the delay of the ship's delivery - but the yard did mention that the complexity of delivering such a vessel does present challenges and may unique situations. When delivered, the Flying Clipper will be the fourth and largest sailing ship of the Star Clipper fleet. The Flying Clipper is an exact replica of the France II, ordered in 1911, from Le Gironde Shipyard in Bordeaux, France, At the time and today, she was/will be the largest square rigger ever built. Measuring 8,770 tons, she will be powered by 32 sails.

An exact delivery date would be provided at a later date.

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Thursday, March 9, 2017

Norwegian Cruise Company to Offer Luxury Yacht Cruises in 2019.

Artists Rendering of Norwegian Cruise Company - Nordic Cruise Company New Mega-Yacht.
Artists Rendering of Norwegian Cruise Company / Nordic Cruise Company's New Mega-Yacht.

A new, ultra-luxury, small ship cruise line has order the first two of potentially 6 ships.
The first two vessels are expected to be delivered in 2019 / 2020.  Under the banner of Norwegian Cruise Company / also sometimes referred to as Nordic Cruise Company, the 180 passenger, all suite ships, will be ice strengthened for polar operations.  Passengers will be pampered by a crew of 140.  Branding itself as an ultra-luxury adventure cruise line, the 90 suite vessel will be spacious starting at 35 meters. The first ship is expected to be named the M/Y Caroline. M/Y standing for Mega-Yacht.

The Oslo, Norway based cruise company is said to be establishing an office in Miami.

Editor's Note:
It is expected that Norwegian Cruise Line will have issues with the name of the new company - so I suspect by the time the operation starts - a name change will be needed.

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Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Carnival Cruises New Carnival Horizon to Sail From Barcelona. New York and More.

Carnival Cruises New Carnival Horizon To Sail European and New York Itineraries starting April 2018
Carnival Cruises New Carnival Horizon To Sail European and New York Itineraries starting April 2018

For the inaugural season of its newest ship, Carnival Horizon, debuting in April 2018, Carnival Cruise Line has assembled a wide array of exciting and diverse itineraries featuring breathtaking destinations throughout the Mediterranean and Caribbean.
Currently under construction at the Fincantieri shipyard in Marghera, Italy, Carnival Horizon will offer many of the hugely popular indoor and outdoor dining, bar, entertainment and activity options that debuted on Carnival Vista, currently the line’s newest ship.
Among those is a groundbreaking bike-ride-in-the-sky attraction called SkyRide, an IMAX Theatre and a massive WaterWorks aqua park featuring a water tube slide called Kaleid-o-slide.  A wide range of accommodations will also be offered, including spa cabins offering exclusive privileges at the luxurious Cloud 9 Spa, extra-roomy staterooms in Family Harbor, and tropical-inspired Havana staterooms and suites with exclusive daytime access to a Cuban-themed bar and pool. 
A variety of unique dining and bar concepts and spectacular outdoor spaces found only on Carnival Horizon will be offered and revealed in the near future.
“Carnival Vista delivered the next generation of ship for our brand with new, never-before-seen features at sea. From our amazing SkyRide and the WaterWorks aqua park to first IMAX Theatre on a cruise ship, Carnival Vista has offered our guests a brand new view of fun.  With Carnival Horizon, we continue to expand those themes to provide guests of all ages with the ultimate fun vacation with Carnival!” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line.  
Port-Intensive European Cruises Round-Trip from Barcelona
Carnival Horizon is scheduled to make its maiden voyage April 2, 2018, with a 13-day Mediterranean voyage operating round-trip from Barcelona and calling at Livorno, Rome (Civitavecchia), and Naples (Capri and Pompeii), Italy; Dubrovnik, Croatia; Corfu, Greece; Messina (Sicily), Italy; Valletta, Malta; and Cagliari (Sardinia), Italy – the first of four round-trip departures from this Spanish port. Carnival Horizon will also operate two seven-day cruises departing April 15 and 22, 2018, and featuring Cagliari (Sardinia), Naples (Capri and Pompeii), Rome (Civitavecchia), Livorno, and Marseilles, and a 10-day voyage departing April 29, 2018, with stops at Livorno, Rome (Civitavecchia), Naples (Capri and Pompeii), Dubrovnik, Corfu and Messina (Sicily). 
14-Day Transatlantic Crossing from Barcelona to New York
Carnival Horizon will reposition to the U.S. with a 14-day transatlantic crossing departing Barcelona May 9 and arriving in New York on May 23, 2018.   Five stunning European and Canadian ports will be featured:  Malaga, Spain; Gibraltar; Lisbon, Portugal; and Vigo, Spain – Carnival’s first visit to the centuries-old seaside town – along with a stop at Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.
Eight-Day Caribbean Cruises from the Big Apple
After arriving in New York, Carnival Horizon will offer an exciting summer schedule of eight-day Caribbean cruises operating round-trip from the Big Apple and featuring visits to Grand Turk; San Juan; and Amber Cove (Dominican Republic).  Departure dates include May 28, June 5, 13 and 25, July 3, 11, 23 and 31, Aug. 8, 20 and 28, and Sept. 5, 2018.  Additional departures from New York in summer 2018 are being planned and will be announced in the coming weeks.
Year-Round Six- and Eight-Day Caribbean Voyages from Miami
Carnival Horizon will then shift to Miami and kick off a year-round schedule of six- and eight-day Caribbean cruises beginning Sept. 22, 2018. Prior to the start-up of this program, Carnival Horizon will offer a special two-day cruise to Nassau from Miami Sept. 20-22, 2018.
On its new Miami-based schedule, six-day cruises will depart Sundays, calling at Ocho Rios; Grand Cayman; and Cozumel. Two different eight-day itineraries will be offered with departures on Saturdays – one featuring Grand Turk; La Romana (Dominican Republic); Curacao; and Aruba; and the other visiting Grand Turk; San Juan; St. Kitts; and St. Maarten.

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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Winstar Cruises Returns to Alaska in the Summer 2018.

Windstar Cruises Star Legend to Sail to Alaska in Spring and Summer 2018
Windstar Cruises Star Legend to Sail to Alaska in Spring and Summer 2018
Award-winning boutique cruise line Windstar Cruises today announces plans to sail to Alaska in spring/summer 2018, bringing the Windstar way of small ship cruising to one of the world’s most popular cruise destinations.

Windstar’s Alaska beckons guests to slow down over leisurely journeys. With voyages starting at 11 days, there is ample time for scenic cruising in both Canada’s and Alaska’s famed inside passages – where guests can look for orcas, bears, and bald eagles from the comfort of their elegant ship. Guests can enjoy a cup of cocoa on deck as they sail through Misty Fjords National Monument and Kenai Fjords National Park, experiences usually booked via a shore excursion because the “big ships” just don’t go there.

Each Windstar Alaska itinerary includes sailing through Tracy Arm Fjord – so close that noise of the ice breaking and falling into the water during glacier calving will surprise you. Enthusiastic park rangers, scientists, glaciologists, geologists, and other experts will be aboard each cruise to provide education, perspective, one-on-one discussions, and ample opportunities for individual discovery in America’s “last frontier.”

“We are so excited to be enhancing the Alaskan travel marketplace by introducing our brand of true small ship cruising to Alaska. Sailing closer to pristine deciduous shorelines, delving deeper into all-enveloping fjords, kayaking in icy straits right off the ship’s Watersports Platform, and viewing an endless wilderness from sea level. We are bringing our guests right to the heart of what makes Alaska and the Great Pacific Northwest such an amazing destination and magical place to visit,” remarked Windstar President John Delaney.

“We are working hard now to arrange customized bucket list moments like the chance to hike atop the massive Mendenhall Glacier in Alaska’s capitol of Juneau, zip-line over crystal-clear creeks in bear country, snap a classic whale tail picture on your mobile phone – during a romantic deck-side dinner, fly over majestic Glacier Bay in a private plane, uncover Sitka’s rich Russian heritage, or check out Petroglyph Beach in Wrangell – a destination rarely visited by cruise ships. Windstar is thrilled to put its stamp on this classic cruise region and expects it will quickly become a Yacht Club Member favorite. We honestly can’t wait!”

Highlights of Windstar’s inaugural Alaska season with the 212-guest Star Legend yacht include:

    Every cruise features Tracy Arm and Misty Fjords.
    Optional up-close and personal kayaking and scenic cruising by Zodiac directly from the ship.
    Full destination immersion with 7 to 8 Southeast Alaska and British Columbia ports each cruise.
    Due to the small size of the ship, Star Legend will sail right into Misty Fjords and Kenai Fjords.
    Multiple glacier experiences on northbound/southbound sailings featuring Mendenhall Glacier, Tracy Arm, and Kenai Fjords.
    Longer itineraries of 11- to 14-days let the yacht move slower and get closer to shore exploring more off the usual charted course.
    Naturalist/Expedition Leaders on all voyages who will customize the experience for guests along with speakers from Native American tribes.

The news comes on the heels of Windstar’s recent announcement of its return to Asia in 2017/18, with the 212-guest, all-suite Star Legend yacht sailing from Tokyo to Seward (Anchorage), Alaska over a 14-day trans-Pacific cruise, which also stops in Miyako, Hakodate, and Kushiro in Japan.

Once in Alaska, the elegant Star Legend embarks on three new itineraries with eight sailing dates, departing May to August, including a 14-day Seward (Anchorage) to Vancouver option; 12-day Vancouver round-trip itinerary, and 11- or 12-day Vancouver to Seward (Anchorage) voyages. Windstar also plans to offer pre- and post-cruise land excursions, allowing guests more time to explore Alaska’s interior.

New Alaska Itineraries Sail Longer, Slower, Closer to Shore, and Deeper into Fjords

Wonders of Alaska & Canada – These 14-day voyages from Seward (Anchorage) to Vancouver are offered three times, allowing guests a full two weeks of jaw-dropping scenery and history. British Columbia’s Prince Rupert, located on Kaien Island just north of the mouth of the Skeena River, is a highlight – a picturesque port rich in culture and heritage. Teeming with wildlife, guests can expect whale, eagle, salmon, and grizzly bear sightings, and also visit the Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary, with one of the densest remaining North American bear populations.

Alaskan Splendors – Multiple journeys between Vancouver and Seward (Anchorage) over 11- or 12-days offers a tour de force of top Alaskan destinations. From the wildlife and glaciers of the Inside Passage to the First Nations totems of Ketchikan; hiking in Haines or sampling its cultural offerings like the Alaska Indian Arts Center, where traditional craftsmen offer demonstrations of their work; to the biggest zip-line in the United States in Icy Strait Point … it’s all of southeast Alaska’s most intriguing ports.

Islands & Inlets of the Inside Passage – Offering two 12-day sailings, this itinerary cruises roundtrip from Vancouver, passing under the famed Lions Gate Bridge twice, both en route to the rugged coastline and on the return. A hidden gem at the midway point of the Inside Passage sits Metlakatla, Alaska on verdant Annette Island. This locale is the only U.S. settlement of the indigenous Tsimshian people, where guests get to visit a traditional longhouse and experience the full regalia of Native American song and dance shows.

Luxury Slows Down & Gets Closer to Nature Aboard Star Legend

Star Legend, one of the world’s most luxurious small cruise ships, plays the casually elegant host to no more than 212 guests. The experience is like sailing on your own private yacht with nearly a 1:1 staff to guest ratio, boasting all-suite accommodations and beautifully appointed public spaces such as the elegant AmphorA and romantic Candles restaurants. The classy and comfortable Yacht Club lounge located on the top guest deck is sure to be the place for spotting whale spouts and wildlife on the shoreline, as cruisers relax with a Captain’s Coffee and enjoy the 270-degree indoor/outdoor viewing opportunities.

Star Legend’s 106 suites offer more room than many hotels, with stylish décor, walk-in closets, marble bathrooms, L’Occitane® toiletries, and a tranquil seating area — all with a view. Alaska-bound travelers may choose from 106 suites, including 36 Balcony Suites with floor-to-ceiling sliding doors that bring fresh air and sweeping scenery indoors; or select one of 64 Ocean View Suites with large picture windows; or splurge on a decadent Owner’s or Classic Suite located just below the yacht’s Open Bridge, with a stunning view from the private veranda. Yacht guests will enjoy “destination authenticity” like only Windstar can deliver with regionally themed cuisine, libations, entertainment, speakers and activities, as well as personalized small group shore excursions, and always gracious and attentive service.

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Monday, March 6, 2017

Drone Footage Of The Constuction of the Majestic Princess' Princess Cruises.

 Princess Cruises' Majestic Princess Under Construction at Italy's Fincantieri Shipyard.

I found this drone video of  Princess Cruises' Majestic Princess under construction at Fincantieri Shipyard in Italy. It is really a good HD quality video with impressive angles of the ship.

I hope you enjoy it.

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Friday, March 3, 2017

MSC Cruises Rennovates and Expands Miiami Terminal For New Ship Arrival.

Artists Rendering of the Renovated MSC Cruises' Terminal F in Miami for the MSC Seaside and MSC Divina
Artists Rendering of the Renovated MSC Cruises' Terminal F in Miami for the MSC Seaside and MSC Divina.
 On November 30th, 2016 - MSC Cruises and PortMiami today celebrated the start of construction of cruise a new cruise terminal at the Port of Miami. The new terminal will be located on the site prior occupied by Terminal F.

The new expanded terminal will allow MSC Cruises to accommodate their  next-generation cruise ship MSC Seaside, as well as MSC Divina, which is currently sailing year-round from the Port of  Miami.

Enhancements to the Terminal will include:
  • Expansion of the waiting area with seating for up to 1,500 guests; 
  • Technology improvements to help expedite the check in process and to accommodate guest needs.
  • Expanded and improved VIP private waiting area, including a dedicated waiting areas and guest check-in areas to accommodate MSC Black Card members;
  • Simplified disembarkation process with a more flexible and efficient baggage claim area;

Munilla Construction Management (MCM) is leading the construction project which is expected to be ready by December 1, 2017, just prior to MSC Seaside’s arrival in PortMiami on December 21, 2017.

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