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Friday, June 29, 2018

Princes Cruises' Golden Princess to Offer Cruises From Melbourne Australia to New Zealand.



Princes Cruises' Golden Princess to Offer Cruises From Melbourne Australia to New Zealand.
Princes Cruises' Golden Princess to Offer Cruises From Melbourne Australia to New Zealand.
Princess Cruises has announced that the Golden Princess will return to Melbourne in October for her summer 2018-2019 season

The Golden Princess will return to Melbourne but will showcase the results of  her recent. multi-million dollar upgrade and reveal her new amenities. In addition, the ship will offer an expanded number of round-trip sailing from Melbourne Australia to New Zealand. 

Princess Cruise is proud that this will be the largest deployment to Australian waters, offering calls to New Zealand, in their history.

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Thursday, June 28, 2018

Aurora Expeditions Triples Capacity

Aurora Expeditions' Greg Mortimer will sail the Antarctic and Global Polar Regions.
Aurora Expeditions' Greg Mortimer will sail the Antarctic and Global Polar Regions.

Australian Cruise brand Aurora Expeditions is touting an dramatic increase in capacity with the introduction of the Greg Mortimer. The Greg Mortiner will join the Aurora Expeditions fleet in time for the 2019-2020 Antarctica season, carrying only 120 passengers.

For her global and Arctic sailings capacity will be increased to 160 - still well below her maximium capacity of 180 passengers.

The Greg Mortimer hull is of an X-Bow design offering additional seaworthiness, increased aqua dynamics and the ability for the ship to spend more time in port. The Greg Mortimer is named after the company’s founder, an Australian mountaineer, and is on long term charter to Aurora Expeditions from SunStone Ships. The ship joins the company’s 54-passenger Polar Pioneer.

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Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Royal Caribbean Buys a 66.7% Stake in Luxury Cruise Operator SilverSea Cruises.

Royal Caribbean Purchases a Majority Share of Luxury Cruise Operator Silversea Cruises
Royal Caribbean Purchases a Majority Share of Luxury Cruise Operator Silversea Cruises.

A dynamic, synergistic partnership is joining the cruise industry as Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. announced today that it is purchasing a majority stake in the ultra-luxury line Silversea Cruises.
Under the new partnership, RCL will buy a 66.7 percent equity stake in Silversea for about $1 billion, based on the Monaco-based cruiseline’s enterprise value of some $2 billion.

“Silversea is a crown jewel, and the acknowledged leader in luxury and expedition cruising, two key markets that are poised for growth,” said Richard D. Fain, RCL’s chairman and CEO. “Uniting our two companies presents an extraordinary opportunity to expand vacation options for guests and create revenue in strategic growth areas.”

Manfredi Lefebvre, Silversea executive chairman, will remain in that role and continue to lead the company’s long-term strategy. Fain described Lefebvre as “a visionary leader whose high standards and history of innovation we deeply respect.”
His father Antonio Lefebvre d’Ovidio – a respected Italian jurist and maritime law professor – founded the Silversea brand in the early 1990s. Lefebvre said he is confident that the significant stake he’s retaining will greatly increase in value through the growth this long-term partnership RCL will enable.

He’ll qualify for an estimated contingent consideration of about 472,000 RCL shares, payable upon reaching certain 2019-2020 performance metrics.

“I have always been kindred spirits with Richard and we share a vision of offering excellence and leadership to our guests,” Lefebvre said. “This new partnership gives Silversea the opportunity to accelerate the growth of the most successful luxury and expedition cruising brand in the world.”
RCL plans to finance the purchase through debt. The strategic rationale for the partnership includes driving long-term capacity growth in the booming luxury and expedition segments at a much larger scale than Silversea would achieve alone; diversifying RCL’s portfolio and increasing its expedition offerings by adding a premiere ultra-luxury brand; leveraging the global footprint of the combined companies to generate demand and increase vacation and destination options for their guests; and realizing significant synergies related to global market access, supply chain, purchasing power and other economies of scale.

Silversea CEO Roberto Martinoli will continue in his role, working with the existing Silversea management team, Lefebvre and Fain said.

The deal will add to an RCL stable that includes its largest brand, Royal Caribbean International, a contemporary brand focused on adventure-seeking families; Celebrity Cruises, a premium brand providing a modern luxury experience to discerning global travelers; and Azamara Club Cruises, a destination-immersive brand offering luxury voyages to unique ports. The company also operates the regional TUI Cruises and Pullmantur brands as part of long-term joint ventures.

As a pioneering ultra-luxury brand, Silversea offers intimate, all-suite ships sailing to more than 1,000 global destinations, as well as unique luxury expedition vessels exploring secluded harbors not accessible to larger cruise ships.

The deal is expected to be finalized later this year, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals.

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Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Saga Sapphire's Sparkling Farewell Sailings Winter / Spring 2020


 
Saga Sapphire to leave Saga Fleet in 2020
Saga Sapphire to leave Saga Fleet in 2020
With the introduction of the Spirit of Adventure in the Summer of 2020, Saga Cruises has decided to sell the Saga Sapphire. The Saga Sapphire will leave the Saga fleet in June 2020 but before she goes, Saga has announced a series of farewell cruises.   

The 5 final cruises includes the Med, the Baltic and best of Britain
  • Race across a frozen lake in a Porsche 9II
  • Visit Bethlehem, Alexandria and Israel
  • Dine in the shadow of the mighty pyramids
From Nordic Noir to the Holy Land, the five final voyages of one of British cruising’s most popular ships are open for booking.
Saga Sapphire, which has been carrying Saga guests since 2012, is to bow out with an epic 33-night Grand Finale sailing from May 6 to June 8, 2020, immediately after a circumnavigation of the British Isles.

The ship’s farewell tour also features the Baltic, a gastronomically-themed cruise to Europe’s Atlantic coast and Morocco, and a Norwegian fjords exploration.

Before her last return to Southampton, Saga Sapphire’s final port of call will be Gibraltar, marking the start of a farewell party for up to 720 guests and 415 crew.

It will complete a cruise taking in Valletta, Messina, Alexandria, Israel, the Greek islands, Athens and Istanbul, with chances to visit Bethlehem, dine in the shadow of the pyramids and attend a special event in an underground 4th-century cistern in Istanbul.

The 15-night British Coast to Coast cruise from Dover visits Newcastle, Belfast and Liverpool, the Orkney and Channel Islands, as well as the Jurassic Coast, with entertainment including a highland feast, talks on the Royal Family, Shakespeare-inspired performances and a Beatles party.
Among the optional tours are a heritage train ride over the monumental Glenfinnan Viaduct and visits to Trinity College, Dublin, and Holyrood Palace, Edinburgh.

The Scandinavian Vistas cruise of beautiful Baltic scenery features visits to fishing communities, plus film screenings and talks on the Nordic Noir dramatic style, before the ship’s final traverse of the Kiel Canal to Dover.

Guests can enjoy flamenco and Andalusian cuisine on the 19-night Tastes of Spain and Portugal sailing from Dover, as well as a cookery class in Casablanca, while the 10-night Musical Norway cruise, also from Dover, features the nine-mile long Geirangerfjord, with musical excursions and on-board jazz, and experience driving a Porsche 911 on a frozen lake!

 As the Sapphire leaves in early 2020, the Spirit of Adventure, a second newbuild, joins the fleet in summer 2020.

The Saga Sapphire previously sailed as the Europa for Hapag-lloyd (1981) and then SuperStar Europe (Star Cruises Asia), SuperStar Aires (Star Cruises Asia), Holiday Dream (Pullmantur), Bleu de France (CDF Croisieres de France) and Saga Sapphire (Saga). It is expected that the 39 year old ship may be sold for further cruising based on her excellent condition.

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Monday, June 25, 2018

Ponant Takes Delivery of Le Laperouse

Ponant Cruises has taken delivery of their new high end luxury cruise ship Le Laperouse.
Ponant Cruises has taken delivery of their new high end luxury cruise ship Le Laperouse.


Luxury operator Ponant has taken delivery of the first of its next-generation of luxury exploration  ships. The Le Lapérouse was delivered from VARD on June 15. She is one of six ships in the Ponant Explorer class.

The Le Lapérouse was delivered from VARD on June 15 and left the shipyard in Ålesund, Norway, on June 16. The Le Leperouse reached Reykjavik, Iceland, on June 19 for the start of her maiden cruise. Her naming celebration will take place on July 10 in Reykjavik.

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Friday, June 22, 2018

NASA Austronaut Names Viking Cruise Line's New Viking Orion in Livorno Italy.



Viking Cruise Line's New Viking Orion's Naming Celebration in Livorno, Italy
Viking Cruise Line's New Viking Orion's Naming Celebration in Livorno, Italy
Viking Ocean Cruises has named its fifth ocean ship, Viking Orion during celebration in Livorno, Italy.

The ship was delivered to Viking last week and is currently sailing a maiden voyage with her ceremonial godmother, American chemist, emergency room physician and retired NASA astronaut
Named after the prominent constellation and in honor of Dr. Fisher’s work on NASA’s Orion exploration vehicle project, the 930-guest 47,800-ton Viking Orion arrived in Livorno early this morning,

 During the naming ceremony, guests enjoyed a high-tech show and musical concert that paid tribute to Nordic mythology and the spirit of exploration. Legendary British explorer Sir Ranulph “Ran” Fiennes served as the narrator for the event, which also included musical performances from Italian tenor Antonio Corianò, Norwegian bukkehorn musician Sissel Morken Gullord and Norwegian singer Sissel Kyrkjebø, who is widely considered one of the world’s top crossover sopranos and who will also be godmother to Viking Jupiter, which debuts in early 2019.

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Thursday, June 21, 2018

Costa Cruises Continues to Renews Its Fleet: 43% Capacity Growth By 2021


Artists Rendering Of Costa Cruises' New Costa Smeralda - Part of a Costa Expansion Program
Artists Rendering Of Costa Cruises' New Costa Smeralda - Part of a Costa Expansion Program.

At Fincantieri's Marghera shipyard, construction has begun on the sister ship of the Costa Venezia.  Four new ships will be added to the Costa fleet by 2021. In 2019, the Costa Venezia and Costa Smeralda will be delivered, the Costa Fortuna will return to Europe and at the end of the year the Costa neoRiviera will be handed over to the German brand AIDA Cruises.   

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Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Ponant's Le Laperouse On Schdule FOr Maiden Voyage & Naming Ceremony.


Ponant's Le Laperouse On Target For Maiden Voyage and Naming Ceremony.
Ponant's Le Laperouse On Target For Maiden Voyage and Naming Ceremony.

Le Lapérouse, the first of six newbuilds in Ponant's Explorers series, is due to sail on her inaugural cruise from Reykjavik on June 19. The Le Laperouse is a sophisticated  exploration yacht capable of  carrying 180 passenger in luxury.

After a series of Iceland cruises and a naming in Reykjavik, Iceland on July 10, Le Lapérouse will then head for the Mediterranean for a series of cruises before relocating to the Indian Ocean, Asia and Australia..

The Le Laperouse is expected to be followed by many sister ships of which 5 are currently under construction.

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Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Pullmantur's Monarch Emerges From $10 Million Dollar Refit.

 
Pullmantur's Monarch Completes a $10 Million Dollar Refir
Pullmantur's Monarch Completes a $10 Million Dollar Refir

Throughout 2018 and 2019, Pullmantur’s Monarch will be positioned in the Caribbean, taking passengers to a range of destinations including the Dutch-inspired islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao. Better still, you can enjoy the golden beaches and charmingly colorful architecture on each of these islands while also taking advantage of an all-inclusive package on board the ship. This enables you to enjoy all meals, beverages and onboard entertainment at no additional cost to your cruise fare.

The ship may be more than 25 years old, but she manages to offer everything you would expect from a modern cruise vessel. With a fantastic range of restaurants, relaxing lounges, spacious accommodation options, a glamorous theater and a range of amenities to keep both adults and children entertained during your time aboard the ship.

This year, the ship underwent a vast modernization refit, with Pullmantur Cruises spending £10m on her latest dry dock. For 21 days in May 2018, she was placed out of service in the Freeport Shipyard in the Bahamas as part of a process that saw work take place across a number of areas on board the ship. Staterooms and public areas were both renovated, with carpets, upholstery and furnishing all taken into account. Bars, restaurants, the pool on the top deck, the Jacuzzis and the shopping areas were also renovated.

A total of 15,000 square metres of carpet was replaced on board the ship, while 1,000 square metres of fabric was applied for upholstery of chairs. In terms of new features, a solarium was installed on deck 12, while a number of services have been installed throughout the ship for passengers looking to book a second cruise while on board. It will also help to provide a more luxurious experience for guests staying in suite and junior suite accommodation grades.

Signs throughout the ship for food, beverage and recreational areas have all been updated, with an emphasis applied on trying to use names that are closer to Spanish and Latino culture. This is in fitting with the fact that the ship will operate Caribbean sailings primarily out of the Panamanian port of Colon and the Colombian port of Cartagena – both of which are Spanish-speaking nations.

While Monarch will be positioned in the Caribbean throughout 2018 and 2019, Pullmantur Cruises’ other vessels will operate sailings closer to home. Horizon and Sovereign will be positioned in the Mediterranean, while Zenith will operate alternating sailings to the Baltic nations and Norwegian fjords.

The Monarch previously sailed as Royal Caribbean's Monarch of the Seas. 

Source Pullmantur Blog


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Monday, June 18, 2018

Saga Reveals ‘The Club, by Jools Holland’ - A First for Spirit of Discovery

 
Artists Rendering of Saga Cruises Spirit of  Discovery Currently Under Construction at Germany's Meyer Werft.
Artists Rendering of Saga Cruises Spirit of  Discovery Currently Under Construction at Germany's Meyer Werft.

Saga Cruises has announced a deal with music legend, Jools Holland, for him to become the face of ‘The Club by Jools’ restaurant and bar on the company’s first ever new build cruise ship, Spirit of Discovery.

Jools Holland is a composer, pianist, bandleader and broadcaster. From playing pubs in the East End docks as a teenager, to leading his Rhythm & Blues Orchestra playing to 250,000 people per year and selling millions of records. He is widely respected in the music scene due to his passion for all genres of music, showcased on his BBC show ‘Later… with Jools Holland’. Jools was awarded an OBE in 2003 for his services to the British Music Industry.

The partnership with Jools Holland will bring the music aficionado’s love of live music to the sophisticated restaurant and bar inspired by the great cabaret lounges of the 50s.

This exclusive five-year partnership is the first of Saga’s endorsed venues and will also see Jools Holland perform a number of live gigs onboard Spirit of Discovery with his first appearances confirmed on the Channel Island Hop cruise (departing 23 July 2019), Gourmet Spain (departing 3 August) and Natural Scandinavia (departing 17 August).

The Club by Jools will be one of Spirit of Discovery’s three speciality restaurants, serving a choice of sumptuous meals to appeal to all tastes, but will specialise in classic steaks from fillet and t-bone to ribeye, plus more unusual cuts such as tomahawk steaks. But much more than a restaurant, it’s another of the ship’s vibrant and fun entertainment venues too – the place to enjoy live music and cocktails in the evenings, with resident and guest musicians entertaining until late.

Saga’s new ship is due for delivery in the Summer of 2019 with her inaugural sailing in July selling out in record time and further cruises for her first season well ahead of expectations. In addition the company announced that it would further increase capacity with confirmation that its second ship, Spirit of Adventure, would join the fleet in 2020 and a phenomenal number of customers are already pre-registering to be amongst the first to hear about her inaugural cruise season.


 
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Friday, June 15, 2018

Ponant Cruise Announces 2019 Cuba Cruises


Ponant Cruises' Le Ponant to Sail to Cuba in 2019
Ponant Cruises' Le Ponant to Sail to Cuba in 2019

Ponant Cruises has announced its return to Cuba for a second season with a sailing scheduled for January 25 to February 3, 2019. The voyage will be aboard Ponant Cruises, 64 passenger. Le Ponant, an elegant three-masted sailing yacht.

Two guides of  Cuban descent will be onboard for the entire cruise to share Cuban Culture, meals and engage in informal, relaxed conversation.

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P&O Cruises Announces Name For New Ship Currently Under Construction.


Artists Rendering of P&O Cruises New Iona
Artists Rendering of P&O Cruises New Iona

P&O Cruises has revealed that the name "Iona" has been chosen for its newest cruise ship expected to be delivered in the Spring of 2020. .

The name of the ship was chosen from over 30,000 entries that were submitted as part of a P&O sponsored naming contest..

The  LNG-powered, 5,200-passenger new build, will be the biggest vessel to sail from the UK at 183,900 tons

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Thursday, June 14, 2018

Ponant Cruises New Expedition Ship Le Leperouse Sucessfully Passes Sea Trials.


Ponant Cruise's Le Leperouse During Recent Sea Trials
Ponant Cruise's Le Leperouse During Recent Sea Trials Photo: Ponant/Philip Plisson

Ponant's sleek, upscale Le Lapérouse has passed its sea trials which were conducted off the coast of Norway. The Le Leperouse is the first of six 180-guest Explorer-class ships under contract for the luxury operator Ponant. The ship is currently under construction at VARD Shipyard Norway and delivery is scheduled for later this month.

The ship will debut in Iceland in June, heading then to the Mediterranean, Indian Ocean, Asia and the Far East.

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Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Hurtigruten's Second Expedition Ship - Fridtjof Nansen - Delayed


Artists Rending of Hurtigruten's New Roald Amundsen & Fridtjof Nansen - both delayed
Artists Rending of Hurtigruten's New Roald Amundsen & Fridtjof Nansen - both delayed

Hurtigruten has announced the delivery of its second expedition ship - Fridtjof Nansen has been delayed. Construction of the advanced hybrid, battery powered expedition ship is said to be behind schedule due to the delays experienced during the construction of the first ship of the series  - the Roald Amundsen. The Roald Amundsen's delivery has been delayed 8 months to May, 2019.

The ships are under construction at  Kleven shipyard in Norway. Kleven shipyard faced financial issues in 2017. The shipyard was subsequently bailed out by a consortium of investors, led by Hurtigruten, which owns a 40 percent interest.

No new delivery date has been announced for the Fridtjof Nansen yet.


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Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Monday, June 11, 2018

Great Video Provided By Blount Adventure Cruises - Showing the Wonders of Small Ship Cruising

Blount Adventure Cruises - Grande Mariner Offers Cruises to Unique Destinations


View this unique video of the  US river cruises offered by Blount Adventure Cruises. This small ship operator offers cruises to destinations that large ships cannot access. The cruises offered are destination and educationally focused. View Blount Adventure Cruises Video at NYCruiseInfo.com Blog


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Friday, June 8, 2018

Costa NeoRiviera To Be Transferred to AIDA Cruises

AIDA Cruises AIDAmira to join AIDA Fleet in December 2019 ex Costa NeoRiviera
AIDA Cruises AIDAmira to join AIDA Fleet in December 2019 ex Costa NeoRiviera


AIDA Cruises had announced that Costa Cruises Costa NeoRiviera will join Aida Cruises starting in December 2019. To be named the AIDAmira, the ship will be part of AIDA Cruises Selections program and offer cruises to unique destinations including cruises to South Africa and Nambia. The AIDA Selection explorer program is ideal for cosmopolitan adventurers who would like to experience countries and cultures in an intensive and unique way.

The AIDAmira will undergo an extensive refurbishment before entering service. The ship will feature  two large pools and two whirlpools on the spacious sun deck. The 709 foot long ship has  624 staterooms, which 96 will be suites and  80 will feature balconies. Guests can enjoy delicious variety  six restaurants as well as six bars. AIDAmira will depart on its maiden voyage on December 4, 2019, in Palma de Mallorca.

The AIDAmira began life as the Mistral for Festival Cruises and has sailed as the Grand Mistral for IberoCruises and most recently as the Costa NeoRiveria.


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