Catch up on Cruising: Latest cruise news in bite size

Asian expansion for Uniworld
Uniworld’s sell-out cruises in Asia have prompted the company to expand their cruising repertoire in the region.

Because all of its 2012 itineraries have sold out, and to meet the demand in 2013, there is a new 10-day Impressions of China & the Yangtze cruise, announced this week in Uniworld’s ‘2013 Asia River Cruises and Tours’ brochure.

This cruise tour, adding to Uniworld’s  four existing Asian itineraries, will include a four-night cruise of the Yangtze River and five nights in luxury hotels in Shanghai and Beijing.

In addition, the 2013 programme also signals the launch of three new five-star ships in Asia, the Century Legend and Century Paragon will sail in China, and River Orchid, alongside the existing River Saigon, will sail in Vietnam and Cambodia.

A new 15-day itinerary, Timeless Wonders of Vietnam, Cambodia & Mekong will sail between Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi.

Uniworld’s general manager, John Molinaro, told Cruise Weekly that the company had been amazed at its success in Asia this year and hoped the new programme would meet the “phenomenal demand.”

“The latest programme showcases Uniworld’s  commitment to offering the highest standard in river cruising with these new updates allowing guests to have a holiday of a lifetime,” he added.


Norwegian’s Breakaway
Norwegian Cruise Lines’  newest cruise ship, Breakaway,  will debut in New York next May.

And the cruise line has already given us a taster of what we can expect to see in its newest liner.

Breakaway will feature an outdoor Waterfront precinct facing the ocean on both sides of the deck, as well as new cabin designs and larger children’s play areas.

A fantastic new entertainment precinct will also be on offer. Called 678, the gaming and entertainment precinct will showcase some amazing entertainment from Broadway in its 800-seat theatre, and a specially-built  1920s-era Spiegel Tent to house the circus-inspired Cirque Dreams and Dinner – Jungle Fantasy.

As if that wasn’t enough, there will be more than a dozen eateries on board the ship, including Ocean Blue, a luxury seafood dining experience, courtesy of celebrity chef, Geoffrey Zakarian.


Crystal Symphony gets a revamp
Guests on the luxury superliner, Crystal Symphony, will be the first to see its stylish US$15 million makeover.

Crystal Cruises wanted to update the look while keeping its elegance, Crystal Cruises’ president Gregg Michel told Cruise Weekly.

“The ultimate result is all our guests’ favourite gathering places now feeling even more welcoming, while also offering the stylish sophistication and comfortable elegance luxury travellers look for in a holiday setting,” he added.

Some of the most noticeable improvements will be in the ship’s wine bars, Avenue Saloon and Palm Court Lounge.

The Palm Court Lounge, offering panoramic views at the top of the cruise liner, emulates a ‘golden age of Hollywood’- inspired interior with a “contemporary wow factor.”

And the Avenue Saloon will take on the theme of a 19th century gentleman’s club but with a modern colour scheme and furnishings.

As well as upgraded theatre facilities, the younger crowd gets a look-in too, with a new kids’ club,  Fantasia, and activities for teens in the ‘Waves’ area.


Hurtigruten’s Singles’ deals
If you are looking at cruising solo in the northern hemisphere this year, then Norwegian coastal cruise specialist, Hurtigruten, has some special deals for you.

They are offering special fares for single travellers, with no supplements, on selected departures this  (northern hemisphere) winter.

The winter cruises will provide an excellent opportunity to see the famous Northern Lights, with solar activity expected to be “extremely high”.

The special offer is valid on some dates between October and December 2012 on the 12-day Classic Round Voyage, the 11-day Norwegian Discovery Voyage as well as the six and seven day Classic Voyages (north and south).

Supplement-free deals must be booked before end-December 2012.


North Star plans New Zealand cruises
Luxury adventure cruise company, North Star, is planning a new, expedition-style 50-passenger cruise ship that is “likely” to sail in New Zealand waters, the company has revealed.

The company has operated North Star Kimberley Cruises for 25 years and has recently started sailing in South Australia, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.


Romance on Variety
Trying to find a honeymoon with a difference ?

Variety Cruises has the answer with a series of honeymoon packages to destinations such as the Greek Islands, the French and Italian Rivieras , Sicily, Cuba and the Seychelles Islands

The packages include a 25% reduction in price for the bride, a welcome champagne and fruit basket, a candle-lit dinner on board the ship or at a preferred restaurant in Santorini or Mykonos on the Greek cruise programme.

More, there will be a free massage for two if you sail on the Harmony V, Variety Voyager and Seychelles programme ship.


Seven ship convoy
P & O Cruises marked its 175th year by sailing all seven ships in its fleet into Southampton last Tuesday.

This was a first for the company,y with all seven arriving and departing from their home port in a single day.

Oceania, Adonia, Azura. Oriana Aurora, Arcadia and Ventura were welcomed by thousands of people lining the shores of Southampton Water and farewelled with a fireworks display.


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