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Monday, December 30, 2013

Bacardi Bar opens on Norwegian's private island

MIAMI – Norwegian Cruise Line announced today that the Bacardi Bar, a first of its kind rum bar, has opened on Great Stirrup Cay, the line’s private island in the Bahamas.

The bar offers guests the opportunity to relax at a spectacular beach bar venue and experience Bacardi’s range of exceptional rums at the beverage company’s first permanent bar in the Caribbean.

The Bacardi Bar on Great Stirrup Cay celebrated its grand opening yesterday during Norwegian Pearl’s visit to the island. Guests sailing on board Norwegian Pearl attended the bar’s opening festivities, which featured a live DJ set, exhibitions by two of Bacardi’s top mixologists, drink samples, giveaways and an exciting christening ceremony which featured a ceremonious Bacardi-bottle breaking.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Carnival Splendor to operate seasonal Caribbean departures from Miami feginning in 2014


MIAMI (December 20, 2013) – Carnival Cruise Lines, the number one cruise operator in South Florida, will further bolster its leadership position in the market when the 3,006-passenger Carnival Splendor launches seasonal Caribbean cruises from Miami beginning November 9, 2014.

Carnival Splendor will be the seventh Carnival Cruise Lines’ ship to be based in South Florida.
Including Carnival Splendor, Carnival Cruise Lines will operate more than 400 three- to eight-day departures from PortMiami and Port Everglades, accounting for approximately 1.2 million guests annually – the most of any cruise operator.  

Carnival’s South Florida program features three to eight-day cruises visiting not only the best of the Caribbean and Bahamas but also a variety of unique destinations including the private Bahamian island of Half Moon Cay, Grand Turk, and Mahogany Bay in Isla Roatan, along with tropical island paradises such as Aruba and Curacao on eight-day itineraries, providing unparalleled choice for consumers.

Celebrity Cruises introduces two new destination-rich voyages on Celebrity Century

MIAMI – December 20, 2013 – Modern luxury line Celebrity Cruises has created two new, destination-rich voyages for guests on Celebrity Century in 2015. The new sailings will replace three previously scheduled 12- and 14-night sailings in Asia in order to reposition the ship to Europe for the 2015 season.

The new itineraries – a 14-night voyage from Singapore to Dubai departing March 22, 2015, and a 15-night Suez Canal cruise departing Dubai for Rome April 5, 2015 – will feature destinations upscale travelers consider among the most appealing in the region, and offer the perfect combination of immersive experiences on land and luxurious days at sea.

Vacationers also have the unique opportunity to enjoy an extended modern luxury vacation onboard Celebrity Century by sailing back-to-back, from Singapore to Rome, for 29 nights of Celebrity’s delectable, award-winning cuisine, impeccable service and engaging entertainment.

Princess Cruises wins three awards from Travel Weekly Including “Best Cruise Line in Alaska” for seventh year

Magazine’s Readers Also Recognize Line for Itinerary Design and Agent Educational Programs

SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (December 19, 2013) – For the seventh year in a row, Princess Cruises has been voted the “Best Cruise Line in Alaska” in the annual Travel Weekly Readers’ Choice Awards.

In addition, the cruise line won awards for “Best Itinerary Design” and “Best Travel Agent Educational Program.”

The awards, given by the respected magazine’s travel agent readers, recognized Princess for the quality of its Alaska cruises and cruisetours as well as the line’s worldwide itineraries and the extensive Princess Academy program for travel agents.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Princess Cruises Announces Winners of 2012-13 Caribbean and Panama Canal Shore Excursion Awards

CRUISE Service Awards Honor Top Local Tour Operators for 14th Year

SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (December 10, 2013) – Princess Cruises is honoring passengers’ favorite Caribbean and Panama Canal tours with its 14th annual CRUISE service awards.

Recognizing the most popular shore excursion experiences and tour guides from the 2012-13 season, the awards are based largely on passenger feedback.

Chosen from the extensive line-up of shore excursions offered on Caribbean and Panama Canal cruises, the awards highlight the important role local tour operators play in each destination as part of a passenger’s overall cruise experience. Winners are determined largely by tour scores and comments made on passenger surveys.

Carnival Cruise Line launches "50 Cruises a Day Giveaway" for travel professionals

 Each Booking Made From Dec. 16, 2013 to Jan. 31, 2014 Increases Chances To Win

 MIAMI (December 16, 2013) - Carnival Cruise Lines has unveiled its largest travel professional cruise booking promotion to date with the new “50 Cruises a Day Giveaway,” launching today. Each booking made by travel professionals between Dec. 16, 2013, and Jan. 31, 2014, will automatically qualify them to win one of 50 cruises given away daily as part of the promotion. 

            “We wanted to round out 2013 and kick off 2014 with a program to show travel professionals that the initiatives we launched earlier this year are here to stay and are going to continue in a big way,” said Joni Rein, Carnival’s vice president of worldwide sales. “This unprecedented giveaway not only shows our strong appreciation for travel professionals, but also gives them an opportunity to immerse themselves in the Carnival product they’re selling.”

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Cunard Line to make maritime history in Liverpool in 2015 as the company celebrates 175th anniversary

Cunard Line, operator of The Most Famous Ocean Liners in the World®, is pleased to confirm two special events in 2015 to be held in its spiritual home of Liverpool, England, in celebration of the company's 175th anniversary. 

First, Cunard will celebrate its historic anniversary in style with the first-ever three Queens meeting on the Mersey on 25 May 2015 by flagship Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth.

 Then, on 4 July 2015, Queen Mary 2 will sail from Liverpool to recreate the original Transatlantic Crossing on 4 July 1840 of Cunard’s Britannia from Liverpool to Halifax and Boston.

Cunard established the first scheduled service across the Atlantic in 1840, and every year since then Cunard vessels have crossed and re-crossed the Atlantic without fail. 

Princess Cruises announces finalists for Entertainer of the Year Competition

Passengers Can Vote for Top Guest Performer During Third Annual Contest   
SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (December 4, 2013) – Princess Cruises is getting ready to again crown its top guest entertainer during the cruise line’s third annual Entertainer of the Year competition.

Four finalists have been selected from the vast array of talented performers – comedians, magicians, tribute bands and other specialty acts – who grace the Princess stages each year, and they will compete for the title during Princess’ upcoming Entertainer of the Year cruise.

Passengers will also be able to get in on the act by casting their ballots for their favorite performer aboard Caribbean Princess during the ship’s March 22, 2014 Western Caribbean cruise.
The four finalists competing to hold the title of “Entertainer of the Year” are:

Norwegian Getaway to feature Wine Lovers the Musical


 Miami’s Ultimate Ship to feature the world’s only wine tasting musical
MIAMI – December 11, 2013 – Norwegian Getaway, Norwegian Cruise Line’s newest ship setting sail in January, will feature a new lunchtime entertainment experience for guests, WINE LOVERS THE MUSICAL.

Hailed as a “great evening out” by the New York Post, this interactive show combines musical theatre and comedy with a six flight wine tasting and lunch, and will be yet another unique addition to the largest ship to homeport in Miami year-round.

WINE LOVERS THE MUSICAL tells the story of two mismatched students attending a wine class led by an effervescent teacher and their journey of falling in love. 

Guests attending the show will experience a wine tasting unlike other, as they sample six different wines over lunch all while watching a hilarious musical comedy.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Norwegian Cruise Line upgrade wave specials

Offer includes free balcony upgrades, reduced deposits and an e-coupon book
worth over $300 in on-board savings

MIAMI – December 9, 2013 – Norwegian Cruise Line is launching “The Upgrade Wave” sales event tomorrow, December 10, to celebrate Wave Season, the best time of the year to book a cruise.

Starting tomorrow through February 4, 2014, guests who ride the upgrade wave can book a balcony stateroom for the price of an oceanview stateroom or an oceanview stateroom for the price of an inside stateroom on any Norwegian ship in any destination. Every new reservation will also receive $300 worth of e-coupons to use on board towards spa treatments, personal training sessions, discounts in the casino and reduced deposits, on all sailings of three days or longer. Air credits up to $1000, AARP, Military and Latitudes Rewards discounts may also apply to select sailings.

Serenity now on cruise ships from secret nooks, private dinners -- even romance under the stars

   Out to Sea cruise column for Dec. 14/13

   (c) By Jim and Barb Fox

   When you’re cruising with a few hundred or several thousands of your closest friends, sometimes there’s the urge to have some alone time.
   Today’s cruise ships have the solution with special spaces for seclusion seekers.
   These intimate spots allow cruisers to combine the convenience, comforts and choices of a megaship with the feeling of sailing on a private yacht, says Christine Duffy of Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA).
   They’re designed for such things as private dining, sunning, small gatherings – and even romance.

Two types of private cabanas are offered seaside on Holland America Line cruise ships. (Barbara Fox photo)
   Secret nooks
   Even on the largest ships that carry 5,000 passengers, there are escapes from the hustle and bustle.
   Cruisers looking for quiet times and personalized service “can get this from a concierge-level cabin with its own lounge or by having a romantic dinner for two under the stars in a secret nook of the ship,” Duffy said.
   Ships of all sizes are adding additional balconies that are among the most popular privacy feature.
   The Royal Princess has balconies on all outside cabins and a top-deck pool with a water-and-light show and Movies under the Stars.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Silversea's 2015 voyage collection now available to view, book

Among the highlights are 71 exciting new destinations, including the remote Pacific island some believe to be the final resting place of famed aviator Amelia Earhart

Ft. Lauderdale, FL -- Ultra-luxury Silversea Cruises has opened the books on its entire voyage program for 2015.

In total, the award-winning company's eight elite ships will offer a worldwide schedule of 276 voyages, visiting more than 700 destinations (including 71 that are brand new) on seven continents.

New Destinations
The line's classic fleet, comprised of its five elegant ocean-going ships, will visit 21 new ports of call. In the Mediterranean and Black Sea regions, there will be inaugural calls in Huelva, San Antonio (Ibiza), and Alcúdia (Mallorca), Spain; Rethymnon (Crete) and Igoumenitsa, Greece; Santa Maria di Leuca, Italy; and Amasra, Turkey. In Asia and the Pacific, new ports include Haikou, China; Hambantota, Sri Lanka; Bintulu, Malaysia; Savusavu, Fiji; Lifou Island, New Caledonia; and the Philippines' Bohol Island, Boracay Island, Busuanga Island, and Hundred Islands. Africa and the Indian Ocean offer inaugural visits to Luanda, Angola and Mahajanga, Madagascar. And in the Americas, first-time calls include Norfolk, Virginia; Morehead City, North Carolina; and Falmouth, Jamaica.

Royal Caribbean International reveals new home for Anthem of the Seas

The second ship in the new, highly innovative Quantum class of ships from Royal Caribbean International will become the most technologically advanced cruise ship ever to be based in Europe when it is launched in spring 2015.

Anthem of the Seas will call Southampton, UK, home in April 2015 and offer cruises to the Mediterranean before being based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., for the winter months.
Royal Caribbean International is continuing its tradition of stimulating and growing the cruise industry with new ship investments.

The first home port for the 4,180-guest double occupancy Anthem of the Seas – currently being built at the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany – was unveiled at an exclusive event for media and special guests at the iconic Heron Tower in London, UK.

Celebrity Cruises launches new "Captain's Club" program

Enhanced loyalty program features two new tiers, with greater recognition and rewards
MIAMI – Celebrity Cruises is excited to announce improvements to its Captain’s Club loyalty program.
Guest feedback helped define the new program features, which include two new, additional levels of status and rewards beyond the existing “Elite” level, which is the highest level of membership in the brand’s current four-tiered program.

Effective on sailings now, the new Captain’s Club will offer a six-tier program. The Club’s current levels of  “Preview,” “Classic,” “Select” and “Elite” will remain, with two new tiers -- “Elite Plus” and “Zenith" -- each with their own unique set of benefits and privileges.

Carnival announces Wave Season support for travel agents

Advanced Notice of Promotion, Heightened Field Support, Bonus Commission Re-Affirm Commitment to Trade
MIAMI (December 12, 2013) – Carnival recently shared with travel agents details regarding a new “Wave Season” promotion offering discounts of up to $400 per stateroom on a variety of “Fun Ship” departures booked in the month of January.

The new offer was presented to the trade in advance to provide travel agents with ample opportunity to market the promotion to their clients.
In addition, Carnival is further demonstrating its support to travel agents during the month of January by offering a $25 bonus commission for bookings on voyages of six days or longer departing between May 1 and Aug. 31, 2014. 

The best gifts at sea: CruiseCompete’s 2013 Guide to easygift giving on a cruise

For Immediate Release

Make Holiday Giving a Cinch With These Easy, Portable Gifts for Frequent Travelers 

DETROIT (Dec. 10, 2013) – Planning a cruise over the winter holidays this year?

These cruises are some of the most popular, because the cruise lines create a wonderful, festive atmosphere on board with all the trimmings, including holiday dinners, activities and even a myriad of religious observances. In fact, it’s become a holiday tradition for many world travelers.

Another treasured tradition is the holiday gift exchange and happily, with a little planning, it can be done magnificently while on board. Here’s the secret: the true key to gift giving while traveling is to find thoughtful, compact presents that are easy to pack, while still creating that “Wow!” reaction we all love to see.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Disney Fantasy presents Royal Court Royal Tea for young princes and princesses

CELEBRATION, Fla. – The Disney Fantasy is celebrating the “Royal” in everyone, and whisking children and parents off to a magical affair during the Royal Court Royal Tea.

This royal teatime provides families with classic Disney entertainment and exclusive meet and greet opportunities that evoke nostalgia in even the biggest “kids” who attend.

In the Royal Court, children are greeted by Lady Chamomile, the Royal Tea Hostess, and are crowned as young princesses or dubbed as royal knights before they are escorted to their seats where more surprises await them.

New and noteworthy Norwegian cruise vacations and hot cruise deals, December 2013

Ø  12 Days of Christmas Sale: New deal is released everyday now through December  15, 2014, promo code: 12DAYS.
Ø  Air Credits: Receive up to $1,000 in air credits on select sailings.
Ø  The Haven and Suites: Receive up to $300 onboard credit per stateroom for the Haven and Suites fleet-wide for reservations booked nine months or greater prior to sailing, through May 31, 2014.

Ø  Norwegian Epic: $299 Best Available Inside/person: December 7, 2013; Seven-Night Eastern Caribbean cruise roundtrip from Miami.
Ø  Norwegian Getaway: $749 Best Available Inside/person: February 15, 2014; Seven-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise roundtrip from Miami.
Ø  Norwegian Gem: $709 Best Available Inside/person: February 17, 2014; 9-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise roundtrip from New York.

Totally remodeled "Le Champagne" restaurant highlights major refurbishment of Silver Wind

(Ft. Lauderdale, FL -- November 21, 2013) Silversea Cruises' Silver Wind has just completed a comprehensive refurbishment during a two-week dry dock in Palermo, Italy in November.

Major enhancements include a complete makeover for the ship's specialty restaurant Le Champagne, the only Relais & Châteaux restaurant at sea.

This popular dining venue has been entirely transformed with an upgraded entrance design, the addition of gleaming, backlit wine displays, a redesigned seating layout, and new wood flooring, fabrics and window treatments.

The ship's suites, public spaces and dining venues have been freshened up with the installation of stylish new carpets, new upholstery and other soft goods in an overall color palette of warm earth tones. The Bar, in particular, features all new furniture and furnishings in a contrasting color scheme of cooler shades of teal mixed with neutral tones of brown and beige.

Marvel characters join the re-imagined Disney Magic setting sail from Miami‏

There’s an extra dose of magic aboard the Disney Magic, which re-launched on Oct. 25 with new spaces, re-imagined areas and exciting additions for the whole family.

From a three-story water thrill slide to a lively Brazilian-inspired family restaurant and a spa to stimulate the “Senses,” there are plenty of new and magical surprises in store for guests.

The ship also features fun new experiences in Marvel’s Avengers Academy – the first time Super Hero icons from the Marvel Universe have been introduced on a Disney Cruise Line ship.

Celebrity Cruises' guest-favorite ‘123go!’ is back

MIAMI – November 27, 2013 – Modern luxury line Celebrity Cruises has brought back the brand’s most popular promotion: “123go!”  The promotion’s three powerful features will be joined by two entirely new offers, and will allow consumers to select what they value most in a Celebrity vacation, from any of the following exceptional options:

·        Free “Classic Beverage Package” for two, allowing guests to pair Celebrity’s delectable cuisine with their favorite beverages – representing a value of up to $1,200 for two guests, based on a 12-night sailing, and including coverage of beverage gratuities;
·        Free gratuities for two, allowing vacationers to fully relax, knowing tips for Celebrity’s expert staff are covered – representing a value of up to $360 per stateroom based on a 12-night sailing and including coverage of stateroom, waiter, assistant waiter and head waiter gratuities;
·        An onboard credit of up to $300 per stateroom, depending on the selected itinerary length, and available for guests to apply to shore excursions, specialty dining, wine tastings, spa treatments, boutique items, or any other onboard purchase .

Carnival Corporation names Vice Admiral William Burke as first Chief Maritime Officer

(News Release)

MIAMI (December 4, 2013) - Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK), the world’s largest cruise company, announced today that Vice Admiral William Burke has been appointed to the newly created position of Chief Maritime Officer, effective December 9, 2013.
Burke will report directly to Chief Operations Officer Alan Buckelew and will have oversight of the company’s maritime operations around the world. He will be responsible for maritime quality assurance and policy, shipbuilding, ship refits, and research and development.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Royal Caribbean announces Ocean Voyage cruise packages

Ocean Voyages Packages combine Hotel Stays, Memorable Experiences and Complimentary Onboard Premium Beverage Package
MIAMI – There’s no better way to take full advantage of a cruise that crosses the Atlantic than on a Royal Caribbean International Ocean Voyage cruise package.
The cruise line has announced four new cruise packages that extend a Royal Caribbean Ocean Voyage with a two- or three-night, pre- or post-cruise land stay.
Guests of an Ocean Voyage cruise package stay at four-star hotel accommodations, most with breakfast included; have inclusive airfare options; and enjoy inclusive transfers and tours to explore the must-see landmarks and attractions of London, U.K., Reykjavik, Iceland, Barcelona, Spain, or New Orleans, Louisiana.  Guests also will have ample time for shopping, dining and exploring at their leisure.

Carnival's Howard Frank to become special advisor to the CEO and to the Chairman

            Miami (November 4, 2013) -- Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK) today announced that effective December 1, 2013, Howard Frank will be stepping down from his current roles as vice chairman and chief operating officer to take on the role of special advisor to the CEO and to the chairman, while continuing to represent the industry in his leadership role as chairman of CLIA.

            "We are greatly appreciative of Howard’s commitment to provide ongoing counsel, advice and industry leadership, as he enters this next stage," said Arnold Donald, CEO of Carnival Corporation & plc.

Alan Buckelew to becme Chief Operations Officer of Carnival Corporation PLC

            MIAMI (November 4, 2013) -- Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK) today announced Alan Buckelew, currently the president and CEO of Princess Cruises, is being appointed to the newly created role of chief operations officer of Carnival Corporation & plc effective December 1, 2013, reporting to President and CEO Arnold Donald.
            “With his successful track record in both running a brand and as a functional lead, Alan is ideally suited to take on the tasks of this new role,” said Donald.

Jan Swartz to become president of Princess Cruises

            LOS ANGELES (November 4, 2013) -- Princess Cruises today announced that Jan Swartz has been promoted to president of Princess Cruises, effective December 1, 2013.

            Reporting to Holland America Group CEO Stein Kruse, Swartz will oversee the Princess line’s worldwide operations which includes 17 ships, 22,000 employees serving more than 1.4 million passengers annually. Princess Cruises has sales, marketing and operational efforts in over 60 countries around the world.

Disney Cruise Line unveils itineraries and ports for 2015

Florida Homeports Give Guests More Opportunities to Visit Disney’s Private Island Castaway Cay

CELEBRATION, Fla. (Nov. 12, 2013) – With all four Disney Cruise Line ships sailing from Florida ports in the early part of 2015, Disney’s private island Castaway Cay takes center stage.

Every cruise departing from January to April includes a stop at Castaway Cay, a lush tropical island reserved exclusively for Disney Cruise Line guests.

Carnival Corporation & PLC and the Miami Heat pledge to donate at least $1 million for Philippines' typhoon relief efforts

(News Release)
MIAMI (November 12, 2013) – Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK) and the Miami HEAT today announced that Carnival Corporation & plc, its 10 cruise brands and the Carnival Foundation will team up with the two-time defending NBA Champion Miami HEAT in making a pledge to donate at least $1 million to support relief efforts in communities affected by Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.  Miami HEAT owner Micky Arison is also the chairman of Carnival Corporation & plc.

“All of us at Carnival and the Miami HEAT extend our deepest sympathy to the Philippines and its people,” Arison said. “The typhoon in the Philippines has caused massive destruction, and is having a tragic impact on people and families, including those members of our extended Carnival family who reside in the region. We are in the process of evaluating a variety of worthy organizations that are doing fantastic work in the Philippines. In addition to providing financial support for relief efforts, our collective thoughts and prayers are with all of those who have been impacted.” 

Silversea expands menu of complimentary media options for guest mobile devices

(Ft. Lauderdale, FL -- November 14, 2013) In another cruise industry first, ultra-luxury Silversea Cruises has added newspapers and lifestyle magazines to its complimentary onboard digital service that provides streaming movies and live television news broadcasts to guests' mobile devices aboard Silver Cloud and the recently launched Silver Galapagos.

The additional media options can be accessed on any smartphone or tablet, giving guests access to hundreds of daily newspapers and lifestyle magazines from 100 countries and in 56 languages. Publications are refreshed every night so that guests receive the most up-to-date issues while traveling at sea.

Celebrity Cruises to kick-off 10th anniversary of Galapagos vacations with new book by guests

MIAMI, FL – November 14, 2013 –
The sentiment expressed by nearly every guest who experiences
Celebrity Cruises’ Galapagos Islands vacations comes down to a few simple adjectives: unforgettable, transformative, magnificent.

Celebrity Cruises announced today that it is curating a guest-driven commemorative book that will debut next year to celebrate the modern luxury cruise line’s 10 years in the Galapagos Islands. Past Celebrity Xpedition guests are being invited to be part of this storytelling collective, by way of Celebrity’s Facebook page, to share photos and stories of their Celebrity Xpedition memories.

Carnival Sunshine sails on inaugural voyage from New Orleans

            MIAMI (November 18, 2013) – The totally transformed 3,006-passenger Carnival Sunshine – the largest Carnival Cruise Lines ship ever to be homeported in New Orleans -- will sail this afternoon on its inaugural voyage from the Big Easy, embarking on a six-day cruise to Cozumel and Grand Cayman. 

            Earlier this year, Carnival Sunshine underwent a $155 million, 75-day makeover that added a variety of innovations that are part of Carnival’s groundbreaking Fun Ship 2.0 enhancement initiative, along with several features unique to this vessel and 182 new staterooms. 

            Today’s voyage kicks off a winter schedule of Caribbean departures from New Orleans that will further bolster the line’s position as the port’s number one cruise operator, carrying 330,000 guests annually on two year-round ships. 

Adventure savings offered on Un-Cruise Adventures’ New Heritage Adventure cruises in Southeast Alaska and Columbia and Snake rivers

Book by December 20 for savings on 2014 voyages

Seattle, WA, November 18, 2013Un-Cruise Adventures presents a window of opportunity for savings on Heritage Adventure cruises on a new itinerary in Alaska and on the Columbia and Snake Rivers. Travelers booked aboard the 88-guest S.S. Legacy by December 20, 2013 receive an adventure savings up to $700 per couple on 2014 voyages.

Launched in August 2013, the replica coastal steamer S.S. Legacy sails back through history bringing alive the stories and characters from Alaska’s Gold Rush of ’98 and the Lewis and Clark Expedition and pioneer life westward through Oregon and Washington.  New in 2014, seven-night Alaska’s Golden History cruises travel between Juneau and Ketchikan, Alaska (and reverse).

Experience Hawaii with cruise savings aboard Norwegian's Pride of America

            New Hawai’i cruise bookings receive up to $200 to spend on board 

Norwegian Cruise Line is launching a limited time bonus days offer on all Hawai’i cruises from Wednesday, November 20 through Friday, November 22, 2013.

Guests who book a new cruise reservation on board the newly-enhanced Pride of America, the only large US-flagged cruise ship, will receive up to $200 in on-board credit per stateroom, based on stateroom category.

Guests can use the on-board credit toward an array of incredible shore excursions; pampering treatments in the ship’s award-winning Mandara Spa; delicious dinners in one of Pride of America’s specialty restaurants and much more. Air credits of up to $400, Military, Latitudes and AARP Discounts are also available on select sailings.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Norwegians get more perks

Get reduced deposits and up to $270 in special on-board amenities 
Norwegian Cruise Line is launching its popular “Cruise Event Week” offer on Sunday, November 11, 2013, giving guests the opportunity to earn a variety of on board amenities valued at up to $270, when they book a new five-day or longer cruise vacation to one of Norwegian’s popular destinations, the Caribbean, Hawaii*, Bahamas & Florida and more. 

Guests who take advantage of this limited time offer before Saturday, November 16, 2013, will receive a variety of exciting perks, based on the stateroom category booked, plus reduced deposits and up to $1,000 in air credits. In addition, kids* sail free on a range of sailings. Military, Latitudes and AARP discounts may also apply to select sailings.

Stein Kruse to become CEO of the Holland America Group

            MIAMI (November 4, 2013) -- Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK) today announced that effective December 1, 2013, Stein Kruse, currently president and CEO of Holland America Line, is being appointed CEO of the Holland America Group, adding Princess Cruises and Holland America Princess Alaska land operations to his current responsibilities of Holland America Line and Seabourn.
            Kruse will report to Carnival Corporation & plc President and CEO Arnold Donald.
            "This is an exciting expanded opportunity for Stein and the experience and track record of effective leadership he brings to it bodes well for our future," said Donald.

Silversea lines up notable experts to enrich fall voyages

Ft. Lauderdale, FL -- A former astronaut, a renowned investigative journalist and an accomplished film and television actor are set to enlighten Silversea guests on upcoming voyages this fall.

They will be joining an expansive array of esteemed authors, historians, diplomats, political analysts and other cultural experts participating in the luxury line's popular Silver Perspectives enrichment program. 

Featured on all sailings, the program offers Silversea guests the chance to attend fascinating lectures on a range of topics, usually followed by lively question and answer sessions.

Up-market travelers who book a 2014 Mediterranean voyage can enhance voyage with Land Discoveries

MIAMI, Nov. 1, 2013 – Azamara Club Cruises is creating even more destination-immersive opportunities for guests looking to experience the azure waters and picturesque coastal ports of the Mediterranean.

From today through December 15, travelers who book select 2014 Mediterranean voyages can enjoy a complimentary Land Discoveries shore excursion at each port of call to further delve into a destination’s cultures and ambiance.

This Land Discoveries opportunity allows guests to choose from amongst three excursions per port and also complements Azamara’s AzAmazing Evenings events, which are held on each voyage and brings destination to life exclusively for the cruise line’s guests. To learn more about the Land Discoveries promotion or for a full list of voyages, please visit www.AzamaraClubCruises.com.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Royal Caribbean announces Mariner of the Seas' winter 2014-15 season

(News Release)

MIAMI – Royal Caribbean International has unveiled 29 new Southeast Asia sailings aboard Mariner of the Seas.

Starting in November 2014, Mariner of the Seas will homeport at Singapore and sail three- to five-night itineraries, calling at ports such as Phuket, Thailand, and Penang, Langkawi and Kuala Lumpur (Port Klang) in Malaysia.

A special seven-night itinerary, departing February 11, 2015, will overnight at Bangkok (Laemchabang), Thailand, and call at Ho Chi Minh City (Phu My), Vietnam. Mariner of the Seas’ winter season will conclude with an eight-night itinerary from Singapore to Shanghai (Baoshan), China, departing on March 7, and featuring an overnight at Hong Kong with calls at Ho Chi Minh City (Phu My) and Xiamen, China.

Azamara Club Cruises announces 2015 voyages program

(News Release)
Destination-Immersion Cruise Line to Sail Australia in late 2015

MIAMI – Azamara Club Cruises has unveiled its 2015 voyages program, comprising 52 voyages, ranging from five- to 18-night itineraries to some of the world’s most intriguing destinations.

Catering to up-market travelers, Azamara Journey and Azamara Quest will visit a total of 203 ports in 62 countries, destinations that have been made famous by myths and legends, history and beauty.

As part of the new 2015 program, Azamara will make 16 maiden port calls among an expansive, curated collection of culture-rich metropolises, charming colonial towns, stunning beaches and unsurpassed natural preserves in South America, the West Indies, Europe, the Far East and – for the first time – Australia.

Celebrity Cruises presents "star-studded" musical performances, gaming experiences on Christmas cruises

‘Finalists at Sea’ features top reality show and recording artists;
Exclusive partnership with Xbox allows guests to be among first to enjoy Xbox One
MIAMI – October 3, 2013 – If more is merrier, guests on Celebrity Cruises’ Caribbean Christmas sailings can anticipate very merry vacations, highlighted by exclusive new performances and programs to appeal to all ages.

Together with Nite Raiders Entertainment in Las Vegas, Celebrity will premiere on its Caribbean Christmas cruises “Finalists at Sea,” a series of concerts, Q&A sessions and autograph signings by finalists of past seasons of the popular television show, American Idol®.
Two artists will perform on each sailing. The star-studded lineup includes:

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Silversea's second expedition ship, Silver Galapagos, sets sail

Ft. Lauderdale, FL -- Luxury expedition cruise specialist Silversea has launched its second expedition ship.

Fresh from a major refurbishment, the 100-guest ship (formerly named Galapagos Explorer II) embarked September 28 on her first-ever voyage as Silver Galapagos.

The all-suite Silver Galapagos has just completed a major stem-to-stern refurbishment. All public spaces and guest suites have been refreshed with new upholstery, carpeting, curtains, and wall treatments. Each suite is highlighted by a totally renovated bathroom, enhanced with rich marble detailing.

Celebrity Chef Guy Fieri sails with Carnival Cruise Lines in Food Network TV special

            MIAMI (October 23, 2013) – Guy Fieri and his family take to the sea for fun, adventure  and killer food aboard the Carnival Breeze in a new television special, Guy’s Family Cruise, premiering on Food Network Monday, October 28 at 9 p.m. ET (8 p.m. CT).            
            Guy’s Family Cruise follows the Fieris during their Caribbean adventure – making stops in Miami, the Bahamas, Turks & Caicos Islands, and Jamaica aboard Carnival Cruise Lines’ largest and newest ship, Carnival Breeze.
            In the hour-long Food Network special, Guy and his family experience many of the amazing attractions available on Carnival Breeze.

New and noteworthy Norwegian cruise vacations and hot cruise deals

Ø  Let’s Cruise Sales Event: Receive up to $250 Onboard Credit per stateroom plus reduced deposit when you book any 3-day or longer sailing, now through November 1, 2013.
Ø  Cruisetour Onboard Credit Offer: Receive up to $500 Onboard Credit per stateroom plus reduced deposit when you book a Cruisetour in conjunction with cruises in Europe, Alaska, or Hawaii, now through November 1, 2013.
Ø  Norwegian Getaway Bonus Offer: Receive up to $100 Onboard Credit per stateroom when you book a cruise on Norwegian Getaway, now through November 1, 2013.
Ø  Air Credits: Receive up to $1,000 in air credits on select sailings.
Ø  The Haven and Suites: Receive up to $300 onboard credit per stateroom for the Haven and Suites fleet-wide for reservations booked nine months or greater prior to sailing, through December 31, 2013.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Keep on grooving with B.B. King's Blues Club and Dancing with the Stars on the ms Eurodam

   Out to Sea for Oct. 19-20/13

   (c) By Jim and Barb Fox

   News Update: The B.B. King's Blues Club is being expanded to other Holland America Ships:

B.B. King’s Blues Club Schedule
    Entertainment options and activities on board cruise ships continue to evolve to keep the good time rolling on the high seas.
   Holland America Lines’ (HAL) Eurodam has added the overwhelmingly popular B.B. King’s Blues Club along with Dancing with the Stars: At Sea.
   On a recent Canada-New England Fall Colour cruise from New York City to Quebec City, we found the blues club packed nightly as were the dancing competitions.
   A new addition to the ms Eurodam is the popular B.B. King’s Blues Club. (Barbara Fox photo)
   Culinary enhancements include visiting celebrity chefs and authors to enhance the Culinary Arts Centre program.
   Tasty additions are An Evening at Le Cirque, replicating the famous New York restaurant, in the Pinnacle Grill one evening on each cruise.
   There’s also the Taste of De Librije dinner with dishes and menus from chef Jonnie Boer’s restaurant in the Netherlands.
   The new Master Chef’s International Dinner in the Rembrandt Dining Room showcases signature dishes from around the world.
   Other additions are the alternative dining Canaletto Italian restaurant and Tamarind for fine Asian cuisine with its Silk Den lounge and views from atop the ship.
The ms Eurodam at port in Saguenay-Lac Saint John, Quebec. (Jim Fox photo)

Friday, September 27, 2013

Norwegian Getaway to feature sweet treats of Carlo's Bake Shop

Buddy Valastro, Star of TLC’s “Cake Boss,” to Open
Carlo’s Bake Shop on Miami’s Ship

MIAMI - September 24, 2013 Norwegian Cruise Line announced today that Master Baker Buddy Valastro, star of the popular TLC television series “Cake Boss” and “Next Great Baker,” will open his second Carlo’s Bake Shop at sea on the new Norwegian Getaway, coming to Miami in February. 

Valastro first partnered with Norwegian Cruise Line when he opened Carlo’s Bake Shop on Norwegian Breakaway, which began sailing from New York City in May 2013. Norwegian Getaway will be the second ship in the fleet to feature Carlo’s Bake Shop.

“Because of our guests’ exceptional reviews of Carlo’s Bake Shop on Norwegian Breakaway, we wanted to offer more Norwegian guests a chance to enjoy Buddy’s delicious baked goods,” said Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line’s chief executive officer.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Dance competition winners from all 15 Holland America ships to compete in "Champions Cruise" Jan. 12

Holland America Line Adds Pro Dancers Kym Johnson, Tristan MacManus and celebrity Sabrina Bryan To 'Dancing With The Stars: At Sea' theme cruises in the Caribbean Jan. 5 and 12, 2014

SEATTLE - Dancing aficionados and fans of the hit ABC television show "Dancing with the Stars" can join professional dancers Kym Johnson and Tristan MacManus, along with actress and former celebrity participant Sabrina Bryan, on the Jan. 5, 2014, "Dancing with the Stars: At Sea" theme cruise and the Jan. 12 Champions Cruise. 

Both seven-day Caribbean cruises are onboard ms Nieuw Amsterdam.

While onboard, the dancers will perform for guests, dazzling the audience with dance numbers from the television series. Additional events on the theme cruises include dance lessons with the shipboard professional dancers, a special fashion show featuring the glamorous show costumes, and a chance to meet the dance pros and celebrities, ask questions and take photos with them. 

Norwegian debuts ice cream bar concept on the Breakaway

Guests on board can indulge in a variety of specialty sundaes and ice cream treats; new concept will also be available on Norwegian Getaway


MIAMI – September 17, 2013 – Norwegian Cruise Line announced today that a brand new Ice Cream Bar* concept debuted on board the line’s newest ship, Norwegian Breakaway and will also be available on Norwegian Getaway upon her arrival to Miami in February 2014.

Carnival Corp. hires McKinsey's Leibowitz

MIAMI (September 19, 2013) -- Carnival Corporation & plc (NYSE/LSE: CCL; NYSE: CUK) today announced Josh Leibowitz as the company's executive vice president of group strategy and corporate operations, effective October 1.
Leibowitz, 42, comes to Carnival from the consulting firm McKinsey, where he served as its managing partner of the Miami office and the leader of the company's work in big data and channel management -- experience that will be important as Carnival strengthens its marketing and customer relationship capabilities.

New collection of Royal Caribbean "unique sailings" feature themed enrichment and exclusive packages and promotions

MIAMI, Sept. 20, 2013 - There is no better way to span two continents in one vacation than aboard a Royal Caribbean cruise.

The cruise line known for the industry’s most innovative cruise ships today announced Ocean Voyages, a collection of special sailings that offer unique onboard programming, new shore excursion packages and unbeatable value on 2014 sailings between Europe and the Americas.
Vacationers can choose among 11 Royal Caribbean ships that call at more than 35 exciting destinations on Ocean Voyages, which also include late-2014 sailings aboard the world’s largest and most innovative cruise ship Oasis of the Seas, and the next-generation Quantum of the Seas, introducing its panoply of new at-sea firsts to the industry.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Norwegian's Pride of America debuts new suites and studio staterooms

After $30 million enhancement, US-Flagged cruise ship welcome guests in brand-new staterooms 
MIAMI – September 13, 2013 – Norwegian Cruise Line unveiled 32 brand-new staterooms this week on the ship’s Hawaii-based vessel, Pride of America.

The final elements in a $30 million enhancement project that began in March, the addition of the new luxurious suites, studios for solo travelers and inside staterooms offers guests a new way to experience a spectacular inter-island cruise in Hawai`i.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

New and noteworthy Norwegian cruise vacations and hot cruise deals:

Ø  Caribbean Bonus Week: Out of Miami from September 13 through September 16, 2013.
Ø  Airfare Credits: Receive up to $1,000 in airfare credits on select sailings.
Ø  The Haven and Suites: Receive up to $300 onboard credit per stateroom for the Haven and Suites fleet-wide for reservations booked nine months or greater prior to sailing, through December 31, 2013.

Ø  Norwegian Pearl: $299 Best Available Inside/person: November 5, 2013: Five-night Western Caribbean roundtrip from Miami.
Ø  Norwegian Epic: $579 Best Available Inside/person: November 9, 2013 & November 16, 2013: Seven-night Eastern Caribbean roundtrip from Miami.
Ø  Norwegian Sun: $619 Best Available Inside/person: October 20, 2013: 10-Night Southern Caribbean roundtrip from Miami.

Carnival Cruise lines launches "groundbreaking" Great Vacation Guarantee

One-of-a-Kind Program Offers 110 Percent Refund, Complimentary Return Flights
And More Should Guests Not Be Completely Satisfied

             MIAMI (September 12, 2013) – Carnival Cruise Lines today unveiled an unprecedented new program that offers consumers a one-of-a-kind, hassle-free money-back guarantee when booking a Carnival cruise vacation.
                Designed to provide consumers with complete peace of mind, the “Great Vacation Guarantee”  allows guests to end their voyage early and receive a 110 percent refund plus complimentary transportation home, along with a $100 shipboard credit for a future cruise, should they be dissatisfied with their cruise for any reason.
            “We are proud to carry nearly 4.5 million satisfied guests each year and are very confident in the quality of the vacation experience we provide on board the 24 ships of Carnival Cruise Lines,” said Gerry Cahill, Carnival president and CEO.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Travel agents sail free with new promotion from Carnival Cruise Lines

(News Release)
Created from Carnival Conversations Feedback, Promotion Offers Early Access to Carnival Passport and Travel Agent Rewards Program Members

MIAMI (September 9, 2013) - Carnival Cruise Lines is offering travel agents an opportunity to enjoy the “Fun Ship” vacation experience first-hand on a complimentary basis through its new Travel Agent Complimentary Cruise Promotion. 

From September 12-26, 2013, travel agents may visit GoCCL.com, the line’s travel agent Internet portal, and select from a variety of sailings departing between September 2013 and January 2014.   

Silversea's eighth ship, Silver Discoverer, to sail in Micronesia, Melanesia, Polynesia, Russian Far East, Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand from March 2014

(News Release)
(Ft. Lauderdale, FL -- September 10, 2013) Leading ultra-luxury cruise operator Silversea, renowned for its prestigious ships and exotic locations, is to sail to even more remote and stunning destinations from 2014 with the arrival of its newest expedition ship, the 128-guest Silver Discoverer.

Aboard Silver Discoverer, guests will be able to explore remote areas of Micronesia, Melanesia, Polynesia in addition to the Russian Far East, Southeast Asia, New Zealand and Australia, including one of its hidden treasures, the Kimberley. This vast area in North West Australia is three times the size of England and three-fifth the size of Texas.