Carnival Spirit not just for kids
Wanted: People of all ages for Carnival Spirit.
That’s the message Carnival Cruise Lines wants to get across to attract everybody, not just families, to cruise on the 2680-passenger Carnival Spirit.
Carnival Cruise Lines’ Vicky Tomasino told Cruise Weekly that even though the ship is full of fun facilities such as the Green Thunder waterslide, it’s not just for kids.
Included in the ship’s extensive facilities are 16 bars and lounges, fine dining restaurants, Broadway-style shows, comedy clubs and the adult-only Serenity deck.
“Carnival Spirit is very multi-generational, there’s something for everyone and plenty to do that doesn’t require having children.
“We are also a great option for 65 to 75 year-olds, couples, honeymooners, girls’ get-aways and family reunions,” she added.
While the ship is generally sold out in school holidays, she is cruising all-year-round, and when the kids are in school, this is the time to book your trip.
Carnival Spirit is the cruise lines’ newest and largest ship and the company is bringing her over to Sydney where she will be home-ported until at least 2017.
Tomasino adds that this is what makes her different to other cruise lines, “whose ships are only passing through for a few months”.
She will also have “a couple of departures” from Melbourne in 2013.
Mariner of the Seas explores China
Royal Caribbean has committed a second 3000-passenger ship to Asia next year, reflecting increased customer interest in the region.
The newly revamped Mariner of the Seas, formerly based in the Mediterranean, will offer cruises from China and Singapore to Southeast Asia, Japan and Korea, throughout the rest of the year.
Special features of the ship include enhanced cabins, a shopping and restaurant promenade, an ice rink, outdoor movie area, rock-climbing wall, sports courts and three swimming pools.
She will join her fleet mate, the 3000-passenger Voyager of the Seas, which is about to set off on her second season in China and then her inaugural season in Australasia.
After sailing out of Singapore and Shanghai for the past three years, the much smaller and older Legend of the Seas will be sent back to Europe.
Richard Fain, chairman and CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises told Cruise Weekly that the company sees Asia in general, and China in particular, as a strategic objective.
“We have been so pleased by the market’s response to bringing Voyager of the Seas to Asia that it made strategic sense to send a second ship of equal size,” he added.
The move is not only designed to attract people interested in exploring the region but to attract Chinese travellers.
As well as the usual European menus, there will be Chinese-style menus, more retail and entertainment, language services and additional Chinese crew.
Mariner of the Seas will sail from the Caribbean in April and head to Singapore and onto China via Dubai and the Suez Canal.
P & O’s Safety Changes
P & O Cruises has had an extensive review of its ships safety procedures which will affect all people with mobility aids such as wheelchairs and scooters.
From May/June 2013, all mobility aids must be stored inside cabins when not in use.
In addition, all guests using mobility scooters should select either a wheelchair-accessible cabin, or suite, or mini suite.
Alternatively, if passengers are able to bring a collapsible wheelchair, they can book any type of cabin where the wheelchair can be safely stored.
Sophia Loren christens Divina
The christening of the MSC Divina in Marseilles was presided over by none other than movie star legend Sophia Loren.
Some said it was fitting that one of the most beautiful women in the world should be christening what MSC claims is the most beautiful ship in the region.
The 4354-passenger ship boasts 18 decks, 1751 cabins, seven restaurants, 20 bars and lounges, four swimming pools, a bowling alley, a gym and a spa.
The star-studded occasion, which included Gerard Depardieu, included a dare-devil fly-past by display team planes, a performance by acclaimed Italian singer, pianist and composer Paolo Conte, and a Gala Dinner.
MSC said in a statement that the ship was specially designed to reflect the Mediterranean region.
“Every detail of the onboard experience and the christening itself were carefully considered to reflect the colours, the perfumes, the history and the culture of the area.”
Uniworld goes Italian
Uniworld Boutique River Cruises will be the only major river cruise line company to offer an itinerary in Italy in 2013.
Uniworld’s River Countess will cruise the Po River and the Venice Lagoon.
This brings the total of Uniworld Cruises to 31 and if you book before 30 June 2012, you will get 2012 prices for 2013 departures.
Other additions to the 2013 programme, include the debut of the Queen Isabel on the Douro River in Spain and Portugal, as well as the River Orchid which will cruise the Mekong River in Vietnam and Cambodia alongside the River Saigon.
More, the cruise line offers an 11-day Christmas/New Year cruise on rivers in Germany, Austria and Hungary, as well as an 8-day Highlights of Eastern Europe, taking in Vienna, Bratislavia,
Budapest, Vukovar and Belgrade.
Uniworld continues to offer the ever-popular cruises, Imperial Waterways of Russia and the eight-day Enchanting Danube.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises celebrated its 20th birthday this week having launched on 26 May 1992 as Radisson Diamond Cruises, later merging with Seven Seas Cruises and in 2006 ending up as we know them today.
Another cause of celebration is the makeover of the 490-guest Seven Seas Navigator which has just emerged from her two-week makeover and will sail on a seven-night voyage from Vancouver to Seward.
The makeover was part of the Seven Seas Signature enhancement initiative and included a complete redecoration of the ship’s eight Grand Suites and Master Suites and the installation of Sette Mari at La Veranda, an intimate Italian restaurant offering both buffet and a la carte.
Royal Caribbean’s Running Track
If you’re looking at retaining your fitness regime or you simply want to lose those extra kilos you put on at sea, Independence of the Seas has the answer, with its Royal Caribbean Runners programme.
The programme, accredited by the England Athletics running project, Run England, is open to all guests with scheduled runs around the running track which stretches all around the ship.
Commencing in June 2012, the programme will be led by the ship’s sports activity team (trained by Run England).
Cunard’s Jubilee Radio Station
Cunard is celebrating the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee by launching its own radio station, Cunard FM.
Broadcasting for one day only, Cunard FM will go on air from 8am until midnight on 05 June 2012.
The radio station will feature music, celebrity interviews and two special highlights introduced by DJ Keith Maynard, the QM2’s entertainment director.
Jubilee celebrations will take place on all three ships in its fleet as they sail in convoy into Southampton for the first time.
New ports of call for Crystal
Crystal Cruises has expanded its European itineraries, with seven new ports of call in 2012.
The new ports of call include Klaipeda, the third largest city in Lithuania; Heimaey, an Icelandic island of 4,500 inhabitants; Saint-Jean-de-Luz in south-western France; Leknes in northern Norway;
Bonifacio, a beautiful medieval Corsican port; Palamos, an 800-year-old fishing village in the Costa Brava; and Akureyri, Iceland’s second largest city.
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