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Monday, April 30, 2018

Germany's Mein Schiff Takes Delivery of the Mein Schiff 1 from Meyer Turku Yard.

Mein Schiff 1 at Meyer Werft Shipyard Turku Finland Prior to Delivery.
Mein Schiff 1 at Meyer Werft Shipyard Turku Finland Prior to Delivery.

On April 25, in Turku Finland, Meyer Werft Turku delivered the new 111,500gt Mein Schiff 1 to TUI Cruises. The 1,034 foot long ship is a modified design that evolved from the successful Mein Schiff series. The Mein Schiff 1 is the fifth ship in the series and is 65.5 feet longer than her sisters.

The Mein Schiff 1 will sail from Finland to Hamburg for her naming ceremony on May 11, 2018.

Don't confuse the Mein Schiff 1 with the prior Mein Schiff 1 which was renamed the Marella Explorer and transferred to sister company TUI/Marella Cruises. The 77,000 ton Marella Explorer started her life as the Galaxy for Celebrity Cruises.

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Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Holland America Celebrates Its 145th Anniversary.



Holland America Line Celebrates its 145 Anniversary - New Ship - Nieuw Statendam Expected This Year.
Holland America Line Celebrates its 145 Anniversary - New Ship - Nieuw Statendam Expected This Year.



Holland America Line is celebrating its 145th anniversary today, April 18, 2018, marking its place in history as one of the most experienced cruise lines in the world. What started as shipping and passenger line Netherlands-American Steamship Company in 1873, is today an award-winning premium cruise line taking guests to more than 400 ports around the world, sailing on all seven continents.

Within 25 years of its founding, the company owned a fleet of six cargo and passenger ships and operated between Holland and the Dutch East Indies. Because it was headquartered in Rotterdam and provided service to the Americas, over time the company became known as Holland America Line.

“Holland America Line proudly honors the rich and rare legacy of our past while exceeding the expectations of today’s traveler with the very best experience at sea,” said Orlando Ashford, Holland America Line’s president. “Throughout the history of the company, our purpose has remained the same: to bring to life the dreams of those who sail with us, discovering new places, cultures and people along the journey. We look forward to the next 145 years.”

Though transportation and shipping were the primary sources of revenue, in 1895 the company offered its first vacation cruise. The line was primarily a carrier of immigrants from Europe to the United States until well after the turn of the century, bringing nearly one million people to new lives in the New World. It supported the Allied cause during two world wars and several ships served as troop carriers. In 1973, the company sold its cargo shipping division.

Through the early ‘70s, Holland America Line was the first to establish schools in Indonesia and the Philippines to train future employees, thereby making its shipboard service renowned in the industry. Holland America Line has been headquartered in Seattle since 1983. Purchased by Carnival Corporation in 1989, the company grew to new heights, embarking upon a shipbuilding path that has seen the introduction of 16 new vessels over the years to the line’s fleet so far.

Today, the premium cruise leader operates 14 ships sailing to all seven continents. Throughout its history Holland America Line has carried more than 16 million passengers to vacation destinations across the globe.

The Legacy Continues with Nieuw Statendam
In December 2018, Holland America Line will welcome Nieuw Statendam to the fleet. Nieuw Statendam is the second Pinnacle Class ship for Holland America Line, joining Koningsdam, which launched in April 2016. A third Pinnacle Class ship will set sail for the cruise line in 2021.

The new 99,500-ton ship will reflect the ongoing evolution of the company. Holland America Line’s first ship to be called Statendam sailed in 1898, and this will be the sixth ship in the company’s history to carry the name. In combining the Dutch word for “new” with the classic Statendam, Holland America Line is celebrating the company’s past, present and future.


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Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Alaskan Highway Marine System Ferry Taku - Sold for Scrap to Indian Buyers.

Alaskan Marine Highway System Ferry - Taku arrives at Alang India for Scrapping.
Alaskan Marine Highway System Ferry - Taku arrives at Alang India for Scrapping.



One of Alaska's favorite ferries - The Taku - has arrived at Indian breakers. The 55 year old ferry has been employed in Alaskan waters sailing for the Alaska Marine Highway System. The ship sailed primarily stays between Ketchikan and Skagway in Southeast Alaska. The Taku was a basic ferry able to accommodate 390 passengers and 69 vehicles with a cafeteria / buffet area; bar; solarium; airliner recliner type seating, movie theater, and conference rooms; gift shop; 8 four-berth cabins; and 36 two-berth cabins. The 7,300 ton ship was small when compared to today's standards at 352 feet long and 74 feet wide. The Taku sailed for 40 days from Ketchikan, Alaska (on March 13) to the West Coast of India (on April 21, 2018). Currently registers in St Kitts/Nevis (a flag of convenience for ship scrappers), she is sitting at an anchorage off of Alang, India awaiting the high tide so she can be beached and the dismantling can begin.



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Monday, April 23, 2018

More Original Content On Our Sister Site NYCruiseInfo.com

We continue to add content daily on our sister site NYCruiseInfo.com. This site specializes in cruises from New York and New Jersey.

New Article posted there, include:

American Cruise Line's Newest Small Ship - American Constitution Successfully Completes Sea Trials.
American Cruise Line's Newest Small Ship - American Constitution Successfully Completes Sea Trials.

American Cruise Line's New American Constitution Completes Sea Trials.

Regal looking Scandinavia in Happier Days.Viking Serenade, Stardancer, Island Escape, Ocean Gala
Regal looking Scandinavia in Happier Days.


Ocean Gala I - ex Scandinavia Arrives at India Scrappers - Famed Liner served as the Scandinavia, Star Dancer, Viking Serenade and Island Escape.


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Friday, April 20, 2018

Norwegian Cruise Line Takes Delivery Of The Norwegian Bliss From Meyer Werft

Norwegian Cruise Line's New Norwegian Bliss Delivered From Germany's Meyer Werft Shipyard.
Norwegian Cruise Line's New Norwegian Bliss Delivered From Germany's Meyer Werft Shipyard.


April 19, 2018, Norwegian Cruise Line took delivery of the 168,028-gross-ton Norwegian Bliss from Meyer Werft during a ceremony in Bremerhaven, Germany, marking the conclusion of an 18-month building period.  In attendance were executives from Norwegian Cruise Line, including Andy Stuart, president and chief executive officer, Harry Sommer, executive vice president of international business development, Robin Lindsay, executive vice president of vessel operations for the 16-ship fleet, representatives from Meyer Werft including Bernard and Tim Meyer, managing partners of the German-based shipyard, and the ship’s captain and hotel director. Before cruising to Southampton, England to begin her transatlantic journey on April 21, Norwegian Bliss will showcase all she has to offer to her first guests during a two-day European inaugural preview cruise hosted by Andy Stuart and Harry Sommer.

Upon her arrival to the U.S. on May 3, the festivities for her U.S inaugural tour will commence with two-night preview events in New York, Miami, and Los Angeles, and will conclude with a grand christening ceremony and sailing from her first homeport at Pier 66 in Seattle, Washington on May 30. Following a three-day inaugural voyage with a call into the port of Victoria, British Columbia, she will return on June 2 and will then embark on her first seven-day voyage to Alaska.

“Norwegian Bliss is one of our most highly-anticipated ships to date, and today marks another exciting milestone for the newest and most innovative ship of our young and modern fleet,” said Andy Stuart, president and chief executive officer of Norwegian Cruise Line. “The Meyer Werft team, along with our operations teams, ship officers and crew members, has done an incredible job bringing Norwegian Bliss to life and we cannot wait for guests to experience all she has to offer.”

“We’re happy to deliver another ship to Norwegian Cruise Line,” said Bernard Meyer, managing partner of Meyer Werft. “We are extremely proud of our partnership of over 15 years and are confident that the first ship custom-built for cruising to Alaska will exceed the expectations of their guests.”

Norwegian Bliss, the third ship in the line’s Breakaway Plus class, the most successful class in the company’s history, is the first cruise ship specifically designed with features and amenities for the ultimate Alaska cruising experience.  On board, guests will be able to experience their favorite amenities by Norwegian Cruise Line, plus some new first-at-sea offerings.  Norwegian Bliss will thrill and excite guests with the largest competitive race track at sea, a first for any North America-based cruise ship. The two-level electric-car race track sits at the top of deck 19, offering guests amazing views while twisting and turning at a speed of up to 30 miles per hour.  After a thrilling ride, guests can then test their agility at the open-air laser tag course, or race side-by-side on the Aqua Racer waterslide at the expansive Aqua Park, with two multi-story waterslides, one of which extends over the edge of the ship and loops down to the deck below.

Aboard Norwegian Bliss, culinary enthusiasts can savor new exclusive specialty dining and bar concepts such as the debuting Texas smokehouse – Q, the cruise line’s first full-service Starbucks® store at sea, and Coco’s – a chocolate and sweet treats shop.  At The District Brew House, guests can enjoy a variety of craft cocktails and beers, including local Seattle favorites from Red Hook Brewery.

Continuing with Norwegian’s commitment to offering incredible entertainment across the fleet, Norwegian Bliss features new programming that includes the Tony Award®-winning Broadway musical, Jersey Boys, and ¡Havana! – an original musical theater show created and produced specifically for Norwegian Bliss.  The creative group behind ¡HAVANA! include Tony Award®-winning director and choreographer Warren Carlyle, Cuban-American design duo Isabel and Ruben Toledo and features original songs by Cuban-American, Grammy-winning singer – Albita. Norwegian Bliss also features a new theatrical cocktail hour experience, Happy Hour Prohibition – The Musical that will transport guests to a New Orleans speakeasy on the eve of the Prohibition era. At The Cavern Club, guests can enjoy their favorite songs from The Beatles live with a talented cover band, in a setting inspired by the Liverpool Club where The Beatles famously performed countless times.

Guests on Norwegian Bliss can relax with a variety of accommodations including luxurious suites in The Haven by Norwegian®, studio staterooms for solo travelers with virtual ocean views, and plenty of connecting staterooms ideal for large groups and families. Two expansive observation lounges, one exclusively accessible for Haven guests, will offer cruisers uninterrupted views of the natural beauty of the sea and shore throughout their journeys.

Beginning June 2018, Norwegian Bliss will spend her summer cruising seven-day voyages to Alaska, and fall season cruising to the Mexican Riviera from Los Angeles.  In winter of 2018, she will sail the Caribbean from Miami, and in the 2019 fall/winter season she will cruise from New York City to Florida, the Bahamas and Caribbean.

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India State Owned Cruise Ferry - Harsha Vardhana -Arrives at Scrappers in Alang India

An antiquated and poorly maintained Harsha Vardhana arrived at Indian Breakers on April 17, 2018. The ship, which is owned by the India State was shown to be in extremely poor conditions in 2016 but continued to sail. (Video showing conditions on board is below)

Laid up Ship Harsha Vardhana in Indian Waters.
Laid up Harsha Vardhana in Indian Waters.

The Harsha Vardhana was a smaller ship, weighing in at 9,700 Gross tons and build in 1974 was used on 3 day ferry/cruise service between Indian ports.  The 435 foot long ship x 70.5 feet wide, will most likely be beached in the next few days and totally dismantled in 2-3 months.



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Thursday, April 19, 2018

Norway Serious About Ship Tunnel To Shorten Route.

 
Animated Video of Norway's Proposed Ship Tunnel.

The Stad Peninsula in Norway has one of the most dangerous coastlines in the region. As the meeting place between the Norwegian Sea and North Sea, the turbulent waters have claimed the lives of dozens sailors over the last several decades. Which may explain why Norway’s top coastal agency wants to dig a $272 million, mile-long “ship tunnel” to create a safer passage for commercial vessels.
Designed to accommodate ships as massive as Norway’s Hurtigruten cruise vessels, the tunnel would be nearly 150 feet tall, 118 feet wide, and more than a mile long. The Norwegian Parliament earmarked 1 billion Norwegian kroner, or around $118 million, for the project in the National Transport Plan for 2014–2023. Construction is set to begin as early as 2018. 


Rendering of a large passenger ferry passing through Norway's Canal Tunnel.
Rendering of a large passenger ferry passing through Norway's Canal Tunnel.







Ships might access the tunnel from the north in Selje, with southern access via the Moldefjord. This is where the Stad Peninsula is at its narrowest. The current proposal for the tunnel incorporates a bridge near the southern access so pedestrians can glimpse ships as they pass by.

  The coastal administration estimates that approximately 7.5 million tons of blasted rock would need to be removed, which could take up to four years to complete.

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Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line Adds Second Ship Grand Classica

Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line Adds Second Ship Grand Classica to Grand Bahama Island in the Bahamas.
Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line Adds Second Ship Grand Classica to Grand Bahama Island in the Bahamas.

Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line (BPCL), the only Line with a two-night cruise departing year-round from the Port of Palm Beach, announced that Grand Classica, its new ship joining Grand Celebration, will begin sailing on April 13, 2018.

Beginning with the first sailing, Bahamas Paradise will be the only cruise line to offer daily departures to Grand Bahama Island from the Port of Palm Beach becoming the largest provider of tourism to the Island. The two ships expect to carry approximately 500,000 passengers annually to Freeport, Bahamas. In opening reservations, BPCL also revealed details of the beautiful new ship, including dining, entertainment, bars and lounges and other amenities.

"At 52,900 gross-tons, Grand Classica complements Grand Celebration nicely. There are several additional public spaces – so we are excited to add some new offerings, as well as bring all the popular outlets that we have on Grand Celebration for consistency with our guests," said Oneil Khosa, chief executive officer of Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line. "Having two ships sailing daily to Grand Bahama Island will also give our guests the flexibility and convenience to take advantage of a two-night getaway any day of the week. Our daily departures also add a number of options to our unique Cruise & Resort Stay offering, with guests able to add any number of nights at a Grand Bahama Island hotel."

The Classica underwent a major refurbishment in 2014. In October 2017, a comprehensive dry dock took place to improve systems and infrastructure, complemented with refurbishments and improvements executed by BPCL, to make her ready for the US market.

The Grand Classica formerly sailed as the Costa Classica for Costa Cruises and was built it 1991

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Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Hutrigruten's Fram Make a Number Of Calls In NYC Sailing to New England & Canada

Hurtigruten's Exploration Vessel Fram arrived in New York this past Saturday (4/14) to embark passengers on a Spring, Exploration, New England Canada Cruise. The 12,000 ton, 374 foot long, Ice Certified vessel, carries 317 passengers usually traveling in Antarctic and Arctic Polar Regions.

Hurtigruten's Exploration Ship Fram - Has a number of Sailing From New York in 2018 and 2019
Hurtigruten's Exploration Ship Fram - Has a number of Sailing From New York in 2018 and 2019
 On April 22 the Fram will sail on a 9 Day cruise from Halifax to New York



Returning to New York on April 30th the Fram will sail on a New England Canada cruise before sailing around Iceland and traveling to Sweden and Norway for the the Winter season.

For more information on the Fram and other Hurtigruten's Ships check out Hurtigruten's Website.

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Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Queen Elizabeth 2 Hotel Poised to Open In Dubai This Week


Queen Elizabeth Hotel - Dubai - Courtesy of Queen Elizabeth 2 Hotel - Grand Opening
Queen Elizabeth Hotel - Dubai - Courtesy of Queen Elizabeth 2 Hotel

Reports out of Dubai say that the Queen Elizabeth 2 Hotel is preparing to open later this week. Reportedly having an limited introduction starting on April 18th, the Hotel is expected to be in full swing by October, 2018.

At this time, 5 of the ship's expected 13 restaurants will be operation. Sitting in Dubai for over a decade and with a number of false starts, it now appears that it is official. The permanently docked liner looks totally restored and modern in photos on the hotel website. It appears that the ships lifeboats have been removed to provide unobstructed views from guest rooms.

Additional information and booking information is available on qe2.com.

QE2 was a famed liner serving the transatlantic trade from New York to Southampton, England for more than 39-years with Cunard. In her career, the QE2 completed 806 transatlantic and 25 circumnavigation voyages and hosted over 2.5m passengers while traveling over 5.6m miles.

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