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October 30, 2009

New Disney Cruise Line Ship Will Make An Impression!

Disney Cruise Line made annoucements about it's newest ship, Disney Dream. This ship will impress new and experienced cruisers. I've included mock photos released today by Disney below.

They call this a water coaster!


The ship is scheduled to debut on January 26, 2011!


More details to come . . . stay tuned!

Posted by Denise at 06:33 PM | Comments (0)

October 29, 2009

Limited-time Offer Can Save Guests More Than 60 Percent on Select MSC Cruises' Mediterranean Sailing


For three days only, MSC Cruises is offering special rates on select Winter Mediterranean 2009/2010 11-night sailings, with rates starting at $699 per person.

Guests who book with the special "Three-Day Sale" on these select sailings of MSC Fantasia and MSC Splendida, two of the line's newest ships, can save more than 60 percent off the regular brochure rates.

The select sailings of MSC Splendida feature 11-night Eastern Mediterranean itineraries and MSC Fantasia will sail 11-night Western Mediterranean itineraries; exotic destinations include Egypt, Greece, Israel, Malta, Tunisia, and the Canary Islands.


Cruise-only rates are per person, double occupancy. Offer cannot be combined with any other discount or promotion and may be withdrawn without notice. Offer is capacity controlled, subject to availability and restrictions apply. Government taxes and fees for all guests are additional. The offer expires at midnight, October 30.

About MSC Cruises:
MSC Cruises has the most modern fleet in the world with ten ships: MSC Splendida and MSC Fantasia (the largest ships built for a European ship owner), MSC Poesia, MSC Orchestra, MSC Musica, MSC Sinfonia, MSC Armonia, MSC Opera, MSC Lirica and MSC Melody. The fleet cruises year round in the Mediterranean and seasonally in Northern Europe, the Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean, North America and Canada, South America, the Indian Ocean, South and West Africa. MSC Magnifica launches in 2010. MSC Cruises recently forged a three-year, million-dollar partnership with UNICEF to fund a community project in Brazil while increasing awareness of this cause onboard its ships.

For more information about MSC Cruises visit us online at Cruising2Europe.com.

Posted by Denise at 11:46 AM | Comments (0)

October 28, 2009

The First 30 Hours of Oasis of the Seas


It's been a long wait, but today is the day Royal Caribbean takes over the Oasis of the Seas! That's right, the largest ship in the world is ready for cruising.

Below I've included included comments from Adam Goldstein (President and CEO of Royal Caribbean International) and Richard Fain (Chairman and CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.). These two important men in the Royal Caribbean family of brands are onboard the ship right now and gave us these comments about their first 30 hours . . .

Adam Goldstein:
"Ok, so I've been on Oasis of the Seas for 30 hours. In no order of importance or anything else, here are some observations:

  • A small group of management had dinner tonight at Giovanni's Table. I ate too much to be blogging right now. It was fantastic. Spending this kind of quality time with our colleagues is one of the most enjoyable aspects of the business. Royal Caribbean people are truly special.

  • We practiced the flag-changing ceremony tonight. The flag-changing will occur after the delivery papers are signed tomorrow. The practice consisted of listening to the national anthems of Finland, Norway the Bahamas and the United States multiple times, followed by the lead singer of Hairspray. I guess we're ready.

  • The fitness center is already open for workouts even though the ship isn't ours yet. 35 minutes into my workout someone shut the power off in the gym. That doesn't happen at home. Maybe we won't accept the ship.

  • Even though we can see our breath, which should not happen in the Caribbean, it is majestic in Central Park at night. And Central Park is still a partial construction site missing 12,000 plants and trees.

  • Usually an onboard announcement is introduced by the familiar ding-ding-ding that we now have in our television announcements. For unknown reasons the shipyard personnel testing the public address system have replaced the ding-ding-ding with something that sounds like a cross between a sick sheep and a drunk cow. Maybe this is one of the techniques for getting through a long dark winter.

  • Our perfectionist entertainment team is frustrated by our inability to get into the theater and start the rehearsals. We're trying to figure out other places onboard where the cast can rehearse while they wait for the theater. Studio B, an obvious alternative, is unavailable because the ice cast is constantly rehearsing in there. So a more imaginative venue is required.

  • I think Richard Fain must have said cabin instead of stateroom 50 times today. The question is, does he do this because i) he really thinks it should be cabin instead of stateroom, ii) he can't help himself, or iii) he knows it irritates me?

  • Kerriann Von Raesfield, our chef at 150 Central Park, is really special. She is a phenomenally talented chef on a world-class scale, yet she is the opposite of a prima donna. She is doing every startup task that all crew have to do, including all safety drills. She thought it was cool that she was trained today in how to fight a fire. If you haven't booked dinner at 150 Central Park, please go to Cruise Enhancements on our web site and make your reservation now.

  • I will be on a plane home tomorrow during all of Game 1 of the Phillies ? Yankees World Series. Unfortunately that plane is not JetBlue. This is provoking an allergic reaction throughout my body.

  • I don't care what you have heard, read or thought about Oasis of the Seas. It is better than that. Much better."

    Richard Fain:
    "This morning we took delivery of Oasis of the Seas in a simple ceremony in the yard's main conference room.

    I have waited six years to say that so I'll say it again. This morning we took delivery of Oasis of the Seas.

    Few people ever get a chance to be involved in such a groundbreaking project. Few people ever get a chance to work with such remarkable, passionate and dedicated professionals. Few people ever get to see such an amazing undertaking overcome all hurdles and reach fruition. I have been blessed with the opportunity to be involved in many such building projects including SOVEREIGN OF THE SEAS, FREEDOM OF THE SEAS, and more recently CELEBRITY SOLSTICE. And I have had the chance to work with so many wonderful people to bring these amazing physical creations to life with a level of service, activities and amenities that distinguishes our company.

    We are still not complete. That won't happen until all the systems become operational and we start to wow our first guests. I consider the operating systems and processes to be just as important as the physical plant and I am looking forward to seeing them in operation. But we have passed a crucial milestone and I couldn't be more pleased.

    I am especially appreciative of all the people who have taken this project from a few unformatted ideas and simple sketches on paper and turned them into something bigger than any of us dared hope for. The architects, designers, engineers, artists, workers, crew, specialized experts, weird thinkers, directors and just plain enthusiasts all made this a successful collaboration and we owe them our grateful thanks. Of course, they are not done yet and I can't wait to see what they come up with next - whether the subject is new physical ideas or greater operating efficiencies.

    In addition, I owe my family my thanks as always for their support, patience and understanding. They've put up with a lot, but they know that isn't going to change and I appreciate that they accept it anyway.

    Now I am looking forward to Oasis' arrival in Ft. Lauderdale.

    p.s. Allure is picking up steam too"

    Yesterday Richard Fain had these additional comments about the ship:
    "Today, I have fluctuated between exhaustion and exhilaration. . . . and exhilaration won.

    My day ended with a walk through Central Park with Harri. First, we had a lovely dinner in Giovanni's Table and then finished our final pre-closing review with Adam and Brad Stein, our General Counsel. It was late, but neither of us was tired. Exhausted, yes. Tired, no. The construction was finished; the decisions were made; and the closing was nigh. There was nothing more to be done until the morning when the lawyers will say: "sign here."

    And yet, there was one more thing to do. This was the first time Central Park has been completed (ex-plants) and the first time it has been lit at night. It was magical. The new art piece under the central bridge was in place and beautiful. The trellises were up and lit. And the walls of glass were glowing.

    I was really surprised. I have always focused on the daytime view and not really paid enough attention to the nighttime look. Scott Wilson has harangued me about it, but I just never focused enough on it. Until tonight when I realized just how magical it is.

    It was a good way to end the day."

    As the first cruise onboard Oasis of the Seas draws nearer (December 1st, 2009 for the public) I know you're thinking how much does a cruise cost on this fabulous ship. Well, I'm here to tell you it's cheaper than you think! Take a look at these great deals . . .

    4 night Western Caribbean cruise December 1, 2009 From $699 US!

    5 night Western Caribbean cruise December 18, 2009 From $739 US!

    7 night Western Caribbean cruise September 25, 2010 From $779 US!

    View Royal Caribbean Alaska Cruise Deals
    View Royal Caribbean Europe & Mediterranean Cruise Deals
    View Royal Caribbean Mexico Cruise Deals
    View Royal Caribbean Cruise Deals to other destinations

    Posted by Denise at 03:09 PM | Comments (0)
  • October 27, 2009

    New Photos of Holland America Line's Nieuw Amsterdam


    Holland America Line has released more photos of the Nieuw Amsterdam being built in Finland. As you can see the ship is coming along nicely.

    It's really starting to look like a Holland America ship. The blue and white paint on the outside, HAL logos on the stacks, retractable roof over the pool and more!





    Holland America Line has also just added a new website regarding this fabulous ship. Take a look at http://nieuwamsterdam.hollandamerica.com

    View Holland America Alaska Cruises
    View Holland America Europe & Mediterranean Cruises
    View Holland America Mexico Cruises
    View Holland America Asia, Australia/New Zealand, Canada/New England & South America Cruises

    Check Out These Nieuw Amsterdam Cruise Deals . . .

    Nieuw Amsterdam - 7 Day Western Caribbean Cruises November 28, December 5, 12, January 2 or 9, 2010 From $699 US!

    Nieuw Amsterdam - 10 Day Mediterranean Cruise July 4, 2010 From $1799 US Plus $50 US Onboard Credit!

    Nieuw Amsterdam - 12 Day Mediterranean Cruise July 26 or August 7, 2010 From $1899 US!

    Written by Denise Blackmore

    Photos Courtesty of Holland America Line

    Posted by Denise at 12:54 PM | Comments (0)

    Norwegian Cruise Line Announces Proposed $450 Million Senior Secured Notes Offering And $750 Million New Revolving Credit Facility


    Miami - Oct 26, 2009 - Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL Corporation Ltd. or the "Company") announced today that it is proposing to issue $450 million aggregate principal amount of senior secured notes due 2016 (the "Notes") in a private offering (the "Offering") that is exempt from the registration requirements of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "Securities Act"). In connection with the Offering, the Company has received commitments for a new $750 million senior secured revolving credit facility (the "New Revolving Credit Facility"). The consummation of the Offering is expected to occur concurrently with the initial funding of the New Revolving Credit Facility. The Notes and New Revolving Credit Facility will be guaranteed by certain of the Company's subsidiaries (the "Guarantors") which own four of the Company's cruise ships, namely, Norwegian Star, Norwegian Spirit, Norwegian Sun and Norwegian Dawn (the "Ships"). The guarantees of the Notes will be secured by the same collateral securing the New Revolving Credit Facility (other than pledges of ordinary shares or similar items of the Guarantors), including first priority mortgages on the Ships, and the liens securing the guarantees of the Notes will rank pari passu in priority to the liens securing the New Revolving Credit Facility.

    The Company intends to use the net proceeds from the Offering and from the initial borrowings under the New Revolving Credit Facility to retire indebtedness under certain of its existing senior secured credit facilities and for transaction fees and expenses. The Company also expects to discharge its existing 10]% senior notes in connection with the Offering and the New Revolving Credit Facility.

    The Notes are being offered only to qualified institutional buyers in reliance on Rule 144A under the Securities Act, and outside the United States, only to non-U.S. investors pursuant to Regulation S. The Notes will not be initially registered under the Securities Act or any state securities laws and may not be offered or sold in the United States absent an effective registration statement or an applicable exemption from registration requirements or a transaction not subject to the registration requirements of the Securities Act or any state securities laws.

    This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security and shall not constitute an offer, solicitation or sale in any jurisdiction in which such offering, solicitation or sale would be unlawful.

    About Norwegian Cruise Line
    Norwegian Cruise Line (Norwegian)is the innovator in cruise travel with a 43-year history of breaking the boundaries of traditional cruising, most notably with the introduction of Freestyle Cruising which has revolutionized the industry by allowing guests more freedom and flexibility.

    Today, Norwegian has the youngest fleet in the industry with 10 purpose-built Freestyle Cruising ships, providing guests the opportunity to enjoy a relaxed cruise vacation on the newest, most contemporary ships at sea.

    Norwegian is presently building Norwegian Epic, the company's largest and most innovative Freestyle Cruising ship to date, for delivery in summer 2010. Norwegian Cruise Line is the official cruise line of Blue Man Group, debuting for the first time at sea on Norwegian Epic.

    High resolution, downloadable images are available at www.ncl.com/pressroom. For further information on Norwegian Cruise Line, visit www.ncl.com, follow us on Facebook and Twitter @NCLFreestyle.

    Forward-Looking Statements

    This release may contain "forward-looking statements" as defined under U.S. federal securities laws. Generally, the words "expect," "anticipate," "goal," "project," "plan," "believe," "seek," "will," "may," "forecast," "estimate," "intend," "future" and similar expressions are intended to identify "forward-looking statements", which are not historical in nature. "Forward-looking statements" do not guarantee future performance and may involve risks, uncertainties and other factors which could cause the Company's actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from the future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied in those "forward-looking statements". Examples of these risks, uncertainties and other factors include, but are not limited to, the impact of changes in the global credit markets on the Company's ability to borrow and counterparty credit risks, including those under the Company's credit facilities, derivative instruments, contingent obligations, insurance contracts and new ship progress payment guarantees; the ability to obtain financing and/or insurance coverage on terms that are favorable or consistent with the Company's expectations; the continued availability under our credit facilities and compliance with our covenants; the Company's substantial leverage, including the inability to generate the necessary amount of cash to service the Company's existing debt and the incurrence of substantial indebtedness in the future; changes in cruise capacity, as well as capacity changes in the overall vacation industry; general industry trends, including the introduction of competing itineraries and other products by other companies; changes in general economic, business and geo-political conditions; adverse economic conditions that may affect consumer demand for cruises such as higher unemployment rates, fuel price increases, declines in the securities and real estate markets, and declines in disposable income and consumer confidence; adverse events impacting the security of travel that may affect consumer demand for cruises such as terrorist acts, acts of piracy, armed conflict and other international events; the lack of acceptance of new itineraries, products or services by the Company's targeted customers; the Company's ability to implement brand strategies and its shipbuilding programs, and to continue to expand its brand and business worldwide; the costs of new initiatives and the Company's ability to achieve expected cost savings from new initiatives; changes in interest rates, fuel costs, or foreign currency rates; increases in our future fuel expenses related to implementing recently approved International Maritime Organization regulations, which require the use of higher priced low sulfur fuels in certain cruising areas; the delivery schedules and estimated costs of new ships on terms that are favorable or consistent with the Company's expectations; the impact of problems encountered at shipyards, as well as, any potential claim, impairment loss, cancellation or breach of contract in connection with the Company's contracts with shipyards; the risks associated with operating internationally; the impact of the spread of contagious diseases; accidents and other incidents affecting the health, safety, security and vacation satisfaction of passengers and causing damage to ships, which could cause the modification of itineraries or cancellation of a cruise or series of cruises; the Company's ability to attract and retain qualified shipboard crew, maintain good relations with employee unions and maintain or renegotiate the Company's collective bargaining agreements on favorable terms; changes in other operating costs such as crew, insurance and security costs; the continued availability of attractive port destinations; the impact of pending or threatened litigation and investigations; the impact of changes in the Company's credit ratings; changes involving the corporate, tax, environmental, health, safety, security and other regulatory regimes in which the Company operates; the possibility of environmental liabilities and other damage that is not covered by insurance or that exceeds the Company's insurance coverage; the Company's ability to attain and maintain any price increases for the Company's products; the impact of any future changes relating to how travel agents sell and market the Company's cruises; the impact of any future increases in the price of, or major changes or reduction in, commercial airline services; the impact of delays, costs and other factors resulting from emergency ship repairs as well as scheduled maintenance, repairs and refurbishment of the Company's ships; disruptions to the Company's software and other information technology systems; the implementation of regulations in the United States requiring United States citizens to obtain passports for travel to additional foreign destinations; the impact of weather and natural disasters; and other risks discussed in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. You should not place undue reliance on "forward-looking statements" as a prediction of actual results.

    View NCL Alaska Cruises
    View NCL Mexico Cruises
    View NCL South America Cruises

    Posted by Denise at 12:45 PM | Comments (0)

    October 26, 2009

    Rihanna Will Headline on Oasis of the Seas in November


    The USA Today is reporting this morning that singer Rihanna will perform next month aboard the Oasis of the Seas. The Oasis of the Seas will be the largest cruise ship in the world when it is launched in November. The ship is owned by Royal Caribbean International.

    On November 19, 2009 Rihanna will have a concert onboard the ship at the new AquaTheater. This is an unusual amphitheater-style space that is a pool by day and oceanfront theater by night.

    This concert is the first Rihanna will have promoting ner new album, Rated R. The new album will be due out on November 23rd.

    This is huge exciting news for Royal Caribbean and the cruise industry. Such a huge singer and pop-icon at the moment Rihanna will bring major attention to the cruise industry with this performance.

    Written by Denise Blackmore

    View Royal Caribbean Alaska Cruises
    View Royal Caribbean Alaska Cruisetours
    View Royal Caribbean Europe & Mediterranean Cruises
    View Royal Caribbean Europe & Mediterranean Cruisetours
    View Royal Caribbean Mexico Cruises
    View Royal Caribbean Asia, Australia/New Zealand & Canada/New England Cruises

    Posted by Denise at 11:54 AM | Comments (0)

    October 25, 2009

    10 Reasons to Sail Celebrity Cruises


    Celebrity Cruises came up to a list of 10 reasons to sail Celebrity Cruises in the Caribbean. Celebrity Cruises is one of my favourite cruise lines. They offer an exceptional value in cruising with excellent service, spacious well-layed out staterooms with a alarge shore, littles extras onboard like white-glove service, welcome aboard champagne and more. If you've cruised before on another line and then go on a Celebrity cruise you'll know what I mean.

    Now that you know my opinion, let's see what Celebrity Cruises has to say . . .


    #1 A Caribbean Itinerary For Everyone

    Whether you're looking for a seven-night adventure or a 14-night exploration that extends as far as Mexico and South America, we offer many exciting ways to discover the Caribbean while experiencing Celebrity's commitment to service with style. We're also the only premium cruise line to offer guests a private resort sanctuary - Ladabee, on the island of Haiti.


    #2 Over 100 New Shore Excursions

    The enchantment of the Caribbean extends far beyond these island's pristine beaches. Discover an exhilarating collection of tantalizing sights, sounds, tastes and textures, with shore excursions for every age traveler and every interest.

  • Treat yourself to a champagne and lobster cruise setting sail from St George's, Grenada.
  • Experience the islands as the original explorers did, on a tall ship adventure out of Philipsburg, St. Maarten.
  • Uncover the legends of region's original inhabitants - the Carib Indians - on Roseau, Dominica.
  • celebrity_cruises_spa.jpg

    #3 Allow us to indulge you

    As you gaze out upon the serene blue waters of the Caribbean, you'll be at peace knowing someone is looking after your every need. Book a suite and enjoy complimentary European-style butler service, a nicety that's exclusive to Celebrity Cruises.


    #4 The most attentive service at sea

    We don't just meet your needs, we do our best to anticipate your desires - from nightly turndown service to remembering your favorite dessert. With one staff member for every two guests, we're able to ensure that nearly every request is attended to with intuitive efficiency.


    #5 Celebrate life with Celebrity

    A Caribbean cruise is the perfect way to bring generations together to celebrate any occasion or milestone - from weddings and anniversaries to family reunions.


    #6 Concierge Class

    Yet one more Celebrity exclusive From the moment you arrive onboard, the comforts and amenities of our Concierge Class staterooms will envelop you.

  • Plush veranda accommodations rival any other staterooms at sea.
  • Enjoy priority embarkation and a celebratory bottle of champagne to commemorate your departure.
  • Choose a pillow from our extensive menu and spend each night in blissful comfort.
  • Revel in details like daily deliveries of fresh fruit, hors d'oeuvres, and fresh cut flowers.
  • celebrity_cruises_special_occassion.jpg

    #7 Experience "Celebrity Life"

    A new series of palate-pleasing, intellectually-enriching and life-enhancing programs designed to deliver the most unique and sophisticated onboard experience in premium cruising.


    #8 Travel onboard the World's Highest Rated Fleet

    Celebrity Cruises consistently ranks among the Top 5 Large Ships Category for the 9th year in a row. (Conde Nast Traveler Cruise Poll 2001-2009)


    #9 Always in good taste

    Let Celebrity tantalize your palate with our award-winning cuisine. Prepared by renowned chefs, our culinary delights are made from scratch using only the finest ingredients.

  • New menus throughout each ship including our specialty restaurants.
  • New presentations for our sushi bars, snack bars, and themed restaurants, including expanded offerings made just for kids.
  • Revamped room service, including the kids' meals that can be delivered to their stateroom while the adults enjoy dinner on their own or a nightcap at the Martini Bar.
  • celebrity_cruises_kids.jpg

    #10 An onboard world of wonder for kids

    Discover a wealth of fun for toddlers through teens, with XClub programs divided by age so kids will always be entertained. And to ensure the voyage is an enriching one for younger travelers, we've developed an exclusive partnership with Leapfrog Schoolhouse to offer Leapfrog Edutainment.

    Sounds good right? To start looking at a Celebrity cruise vacation for yourself view our specials below.

    View Celebrity Cruises Alaska Cruise Specials
    View Celebrity Cruises Europe & Mediterranean Cruise Specials
    View Celebrity Cruises Canada/New England Cruise Specials
    View Celebrity Cruises Alaska Cruisetour Specials
    View Celebrity Cruises Europe & Mediterranean Cruisetour Specials

    Written by Denise Blackmore

    Posted by Denise at 03:12 PM | Comments (0)

    October 23, 2009

    Oasis of the Seas Update


    Richard D. Fain, Chairman and CEO for Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. announced this morning on his blog that crew members are boarding the new Oasis of the Seas! That means the ship is almost ready . . . read on.

    "Business is up at Turku airport. The last of our crew are arriving in Turku today and have been greeted by the first snow of the season. All told, the base crew will be 2,165 people; already over 2,000 crew members are onboard and are beginning to get oriented with the ship. Because the ship is so different and has so many features and amenities, our operating people have gone to extraordinary lengths to prepare this team in advance. That preparation includes a dedicated website for all incoming crew members, orientation booklets, classroom training, online training, etc. They even produced a book of puzzles including crosswords, word searches, etc. All the answers relate to special features of the ship.

    And then there were the special training and orientations. As noted in my previous blog the performers for the Opal Theatre have done extensive rehearsals at our studios in Hollywood, Florida. The divers, acrobats and swimmers in the AquaTheatre have an even more daunting task. They have to prepare for a new set of shows in a venue - the AquaTheatre - which is a first of its kind anywhere. Over the last several months, they have gone through exhaustive rehearsals at the Swimming Hall of Fame located in Fort Lauderdale. Their shows are clearly going to be extraordinary, but it is difficult to rehearse when the actual theatre will be so different.


    I know they are looking forward to being able to go onboard and experience the real thing. Compounding the problem is that it is cold in Finland and the AquaTheatre is an outdoor venue. That means they are limited in what they can practice until the ship gets into warmer waters early next month. We expect the AquaTheatre pool will be available for rehearsals starting next week which gives them little time to set up and practice their performances. Nevertheless, we hope to be able to give at least a small taste of the first shows during the preview cruises.

    Work also continues here in Florida preparing for the ship's arrival and installation of the plant life."

    Want to cruise on this amazing new ship? Book between October 24 and November 2 to receive $100 US Onboard Credit Per Stateroom! Applicable sailings include; December 1st for 4 nights, December 5th, 12th, 19th or 26th for 7 nights.

    7 night Eastern Caribbean Cruise September 25, 2010 From $779 US!

    View Royal Caribbean Alaska Cruises
    View Royal Caribbean Alaska Cruisetours
    View Royal Caribbean Europe & Mediterranean Cruises
    View Royal Caribbean Europe & Mediterranean Cruisetours
    View Royal Caribbean Mexico Cruises
    View Royal Caribbean Asia, Australia/New Zealand & Canada/New England Cruises

    Posted by Denise at 10:46 AM | Comments (0)

    October 22, 2009

    New Photos of Nieuw Amsterdam


    Holland America has released new photos of the Nieuw Amsterdam being built in Finland. Take a look!


    The view of Costa Deliziosa over the bulb of Nieuw Amsterdam:

    Take a look at the rear!


    View Holland America Alaska Cruises
    View Holland America Europe & Mediterranean Cruises
    View Holland America Mexico Cruises
    View Holland America Asia, Australia/New Zealand, Canada/New England & South America Cruises

    Check Out These Nieuw Amsterdam Cruise Deals . . .

    Nieuw Amsterdam - 7 Day Western Caribbean Cruises November 28, December 5, 12, January 2 or 9, 2010 From $699 US!

    Nieuw Amsterdam - 10 Day Mediterranean Cruise July 4, 2010 From $1799 US Plus $50 US Onboard Credit!

    Nieuw Amsterdam - 12 Day Mediterranean Cruise July 26 or August 7, 2010 From $1899 US!

    Written by Denise Blackmore

    Photos Courtesty of Holland America Line

    Posted by Denise at 11:25 AM | Comments (0)

    October 21, 2009

    On the Menu: Seven Wine and Food Crystal Cruises for 2010


    LOS ANGELES, October 19, 2009 - Michelin Star-awarded chefs Michael Mina and Heinz Beck, Master sommelier Robert Bath, and mixologist Tony Abou-Ganim are part of the distinguished roster of food, wine and spirit experts aboard Crystal Cruises' 14th annual Wine & Food Experiences of Discovery cruises in 2010. Aboard seven Wine & Food itineraries, the special guests will draw inspiration from the destinations visited, as well as their own expertise in worldwide specialties to lead demos and lectures, tastings and pairings, and cocktail and pastry making classes.

    "Crystal's culinary options have long been a cornerstone of guests' luxurious vacation experience," says Toni Neumeister, vice president, food & beverage operations. "The breadth and caliber of talent on the Wine & Food itineraries is extraordinary, and further exemplifies our practice of delivering excellence."

    In addition to the designated Wine & Food themed cruises, the ultra-luxury line's annual President's Cruise will befittingly feature former White House Chef John Hanny. Aboard the May 3rd voyage from Piraeus to Dubai, hosted by Crystal President Gregg Michel, Hanny will present several presidential-themed dinners and White House favorites from several administrations.


    Culinary experts for 2010 include:

    Chefs and Foodies
    Michael Mina - Creator of restaurant group including one Michelin-starred restaurants;
    Heinz Beck - Executive chef of three Michelin-starred La Pergola, Rome;
    Tom Aikens - Michelin-starred chef and owner of London?s Tom Aikens Restaurant;
    Andre Soltner - Former executive chef/owner of New York's legendary Lutèce;
    Serge Dansereau - Owner of Sydney, Australia's The Bathers' Pavilion;
    Aglaia Kremezi - Greek cuisine expert and acclaimed cookbook author;
    Paula Wolfert - James Beard Award winning Mediterranean cookbook author;
    Simon Johnson - Australia's leading purveyor of quality foods, and
    Jon Ashton - Food correspondent for The Daily Buzz and Relish Magazine chef.


    Sommeliers and Wine Experts

    Doug Frost - One of only three worldwide to achieve both Master Sommelier and Master of Wine;
    Robert Bath - One of only 79 Master Sommeliers in the U.S.;
    Gerhard Retter - Wine and cheese sommelier at Michelin-awarded restaurants throughout Europe;
    Mel Master - Leading Rhone Valley and Languedoc wine exporter and famed restaurateur;
    Victoria Ordonez - Member of Spain's largest wine exporting family;
    Cameron Douglas - New Zealand's first and only Master Sommelier, and
    Filippo DiBelardino - Italian wine expert and vice president of Banfi Vintners-Fine Wines.


    Cocktail Concoctors

    Tony Abou-Ganim - National Ambassador of the U.S. Bartenders' Guild and creator of Crystal's exclusive cocktail program;
    Julio Bermejo - considered the "U.S. Ambassador of Tequila;"
    Livio Lauro - National president of the United States Bartenders' Guild;
    Francesco Lafranconi - Cofounder of the U.S. Bartenders' Guild Nevada chapter, and
    Audrey Saunders - Celebrated bartender of the Carlyle Hotel's legendary Bemelmans Bar, owner of New York's Pegu Club.

    Crystal Wine & Food itineraries are scheduled for March 30, Auckland to Sydney; April 29, London to Rome; May 25, Venice to Barcelona; September 5, Istanbul to Barcelona; September 17, Barcelona to Venice; November 22, roundtrip Lisbon; and December 12, roundtrip Los Angeles, Mexican Rivera.

    On every itinerary, Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity boast numerous dining options, including specialty dining from Master Chef Nobu Matsuhisa and Piero Selvaggio and Vintage Room experiences showcasing celebrated wines.

    Always an incredible value, 2010 Crystal Cruises offer two-for-one cruise fares, free airfare, shipboard spending credits and a price guarantee. For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel professional at #1-800-738-8837.

    View Specials on Crystal Cruises!
    View Europe Cruise Specials on Crystal Cruises!

    Photos Courtesy of Crystal Cruises

    Posted by Denise at 08:40 AM | Comments (0)

    October 16, 2009

    Princess Cruises Continues Behind-the-Scenes Drydock Journals with Online Look at Coral Princess Transformation


    Enthusiasts Can Follow Along with Daily Updates on Latest Ship Makeover

    SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (October 15, 2009) - Princess Cruises is once again inviting cruise enthusiasts to go behind the scenes at a shipyard as Coral Princess undergoes drydock through October 23. The Coral Princess Drydock Journal, featured on the line's website at www.princess.com, will show the daily progress as the ship is lifted from the water and receives a full exterior and interior makeover, including the addition of the line's signature features, The Sanctuary and Movies Under the Stars. The journal will feature regular updates throughout the drydock at Grand Bahama Shipyard in Freeport, Bahamas.

    The fourth in this unprecedented series, the Coral Princess Drydock Journal follows the enthusiastically received online journals chronicling work on Golden Princess, Dawn Princess and Sea Princess. The journal can be found on the Coral Princess page in the website's "Ships" section, and it will be regularly updated throughout the ship?s two-week drydock. The photos will also be posted to Princess' Twitter feed, Facebook page and Flickr photostream.


    "We've placed a high priority on enhancing our ships and debuting our signature features across the fleet, and these journals have been a great way for passengers to feel part of the process," said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises executive vice president. "We've received wonderful feedback as people get to see the transformation first hand."

    When Coral Princess emerges from the drydock, the ship will feature the opportunity to get away from it all in the tranquility of The Sanctuary, Princess' signature adults-only retreat featuring plush padded lounge chairs and the services of dedicated Serenity Stewards. Visitors to this exclusive space can enjoy refreshing beverages and light snacks or listen to a relaxing playlist of music.

    In addition, Movies Under the Stars will also debut in the poolside area with a state-of-the-art Times Square-style LED screen, offering evening movies and a variety of daytime programming. The 300- square-foot screen offers passengers a movie experience comparable to the best shoreside movie theater. In addition to family cinema and first run hits, Movies Under the Stars also features major sporting events, concerts and the Leonard Maltin Movie Club.

    Other changes viewers will see throughout the drydock include the installation of new carpet and upholstery, plus a rare view of the bottom of the ship?s hull as it receives several new coats of silicone paint.

    After the drydock Coral Princess will set off on a series of Panama Canal sailings, including a number of voyages featuring Princess' Two-day Canal Experience, with an extra day to explore Panama.

    Additional information about Princess Cruises is available through a professional travel agent at #1-800-738-8837.

    View Princess Cruises Alaska Cruises
    View Princess Cruises Europe & Mediterranean Cruises
    View Princess Cruises Tahiti Cruises
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    View Princess Cruises to all other destinations
    View Princess Cruises Alaska Cruisetours

    Posted by Denise at 05:55 PM | Comments (0)

    October 15, 2009

    Princess Launches Alaska Wilderness Sale on Convenient Cruisetours from Seattle


    Special Pricing Includes Travel Between Seattle and Alaska Plus Stateroom Upgrade

    SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (October 15, 2009) - Princess Cruises is again offering its popular Alaska Wilderness Sale promotion, featuring a special lineup of cruisetours that offer passengers the extra convenience of roundtrip travel from Seattle. These unique packages make planning an Alaska land/sea vacation easier than ever by including all travel once the passenger gets to Seattle, including airfare between Seattle and Alaska.

    The Alaska Wilderness Sale runs through December 31, 2009, and features 10 Seattle-based cruisetour options. Air travel between Seattle and Alaska, motorcoach transfers between Seattle and Vancouver, and an overnight stay in Seattle are all included in the package. Fares start at $1,899 US for an interior stateroom and $2,299 US for a balcony stateroom for an 11-night land/sea vacation, which includes a free stateroom category upgrade.


    Cruisetour options include both northbound and southbound routes, with 11- to 15-night itineraries. All passengers will experience Princess' signature seven-night Voyage of the Glaciers cruise, combined with a variety of Direct to the Wilderness tours, or Explorer tours to the Copper River or Kenai areas. All tours feature Princess' own riverside wilderness lodges, with at least two nights in the Denali National Park area and luxury train travel on ultra-domed railcars.

    "When we introduced these Seattle-based tour options last season, they really increased sales for many agents," said Charlie Ball, president of Princess Tours. "These packages make a visit to the heart of Alaska more convenient than ever, so the only other planning needed is travel to and from Seattle. We handle all other arrangements, so visitors can simply enjoy this incredible opportunity to experience Alaska's top attractions, including Glacier Bay and Denali National Park."


    The Alaska Wilderness Sale cruisetours include the line's famed Voyage of the Glaciers sailings between Vancouver and Whittier - featuring calls at Ketchikan, Juneau and Skagway with daylight cruising of Glacier Bay National Park plus either College Fjord or Hubbard Glacier. Passengers can choose departures on Diamond Princess, Coral Princess or Island Princess.

    Passengers can choose from 10 different cruisetour itineraries. Some feature the line's famed Direct-to-the-Wilderness rail service which transports guests right from their ship to the Denali area, giving them extra time in the heart of Alaska's wilderness. Explorer itineraries include nights at off-the-beaten-path lodges, Copper River Princess Wilderness Lodge or Kenai Princess Wilderness Lodge. On all itineraries, passengers will enjoy lodging at Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge and/or Denali Princess Wilderness Lodge.

    Princess offers a variety of land/sea Alaska experiences showcasing the best of Alaska. All cruisetour options feature the state's most sought-after attractions, with at least two nights in the Denali National Park area, plus cruising through the dramatic Glacier Bay National Park. Cruisetour travelers can also see North America's tallest peak, Mt. McKinley, plus immerse themselves in a variety of Alaskan activities, from dog sledding to heli-hiking.

    Additional information about Princess and the Alaska Wilderness Sale can be found at Cruising2Alaska.com or by calling a travel agent at #1-800-738-8837.

    View Alaska Cruise & Cruisetour Specials!

    Posted by Denise at 04:03 PM | Comments (0)

    October 14, 2009

    Norwegian Sky Offers On-Board Saving Certificates For Weekend, Short Vacation Cruises


    Miami - Oct 7, 2009 - Norwegian Cruise Line is now offering Savings Certificates for three-day weekend getaways and four-day short vacation cruises on Norwegian Sky, the youngest ship sailing short cruises from Miami with the most balcony staterooms. For sailings from now through December 31, 2009, guests booking a cruise on Norwegian Sky will receive special Savings Certificates that they can use once on board. These savings include casino credits, spa incentives and family portrait and shopping discounts.

    The certificates are tailored to meet the needs of a variety of vacationers including those planning short break getaways, family vacations, spa retreats or those with gaming in mind. Upon booking a cruise only on Norwegian Sky, guests can log on to Norwegian's Certificate Center at www.nclsavings.com and enter their reservation number to download the Savings Certificates.

    Norwegian Sky recently underwent $15 million in renovations focused on enhancing the guest experience and now offers guests a ship that features more than 200 balcony staterooms; seven Freestyle Dining options and nine bars and lounges; the hottest poolside deck party at sea with the White Hot Party; and longer, complimentary Kids Crew hours.

    "Norwegian Sky offers guests the youngest and highest quality ship sailing three-day long weekend getaways and four-day short vacation cruises from Miami to the Bahamas," said Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian's chief executive officer. "Norwegian Sky out matches the competition by offering more balcony staterooms; more dining options; and a multitude of on-board amenities including themed parties; kids and teen facilities; and a full-service spa and fitness center."


    Girlfriend and Guy Getaways
    Norwegian Sky is the solution to the perfect bachelorette or bachelor party; a girl's spa weekend or a short vacation with the guys. Savings Certificates range from casino credits for slot play to discounts on body treatments at the spa. The party starts from the moment everyone steps on board and is greeted with a complimentary glass of bubbly. Ladies can indulge in unique and exotic spa treatments while the men try their luck at the casino or vice versa. The party continues into the wee hours of the morning at the White Hot party.

    Family Fun
    Norwegian Sky offers Freestyle family fun for children of all ages, and parents can enjoy the ship with extended Kids Crew hours. The Kid's Korner features areas for arts and crafts, movies and computers. The Zone serves as a hip place for teens ages 13 to 17 to hang out, complete with video games, a jukebox, foosball table and air hockey. By night, The Zone turns into a teen disco and bar serving non-alcoholic drinks. Splashes Kid's Pool is just right for pint-size splashing and playing and features a waterfall and a children's hot tub. In addition, the popular Wii is available for play. Savings Certificates include discounted family portraits; complimentary kid's bingo; and internet minutes for the Facebooking teen in the family.

    Spa and Casino Lovers
    Guests looking for a relaxing vacation will find the Body Waves Spa the perfect place to unwind with unique spa treatments reflecting the beauty, spirit and traditions of rejuvenation from around the world. Guests will find everything from the traditional to the exotic in spa and salon treatments. In addition, aerobics, spinning and exercise classes are also available in the ship's fitness center.


    If getting lucky is in the cards, guests can roll the dice in the Sky Club Casino which features Blackjack, Roulette, 3-Card Poker, Texas Hold 'Em and Craps. For slot lovers, there are more than 160 of the newest video and traditional slot machines. The ship also features less traditional games including Pai-Gow Poker, and Mini Baccarat, on request. Casino and gaming Savings Certificates include various casino credits and complimentary bingo.

    Norwegian Sky's three- and four-day Bahamas sailings departing from Miami are from $159 per person, per day. Norwegian Sky departs Miami on Mondays sailing four-day short vacation Bahamas cruises with full-day stops in Grand Bahama Island, Nassau and Great Stirrup Cay, Norwegian's private island in the Bahamas. On Fridays, the ship sails three-day long weekend getaway Bahamas cruises, departing Miami at 5 p.m. with all-day stops in Nassau and Great Stirrup Cay, returning to Miami at 7 a.m. on Monday mornings.

    For more information or to book a sailing on Norwegian Sky, call a travel agent at #1-800-738-8837.

    About Norwegian Cruise Line
    Norwegian Cruise Line is the innovator in cruise travel with a 43-year history of breaking the boundaries of traditional cruising, most notably with the introduction of Freestyle Cruising which has revolutionized the industry by allowing guests more freedom and flexibility.

    Today, Norwegian has the youngest fleet in the industry with 11 purpose-built Freestyle Cruising ships, providing guests the opportunity to enjoy a relaxed cruise vacation on the newest, most contemporary ships at sea.

    Norwegian is presently building Norwegian Epic, the company's largest and most innovative Freestyle Cruising ship to date, for delivery in summer 2010. Norwegian Cruise Line is the official cruise line of Blue Man Group, debuting for the first time at sea on Norwegian Epic.

    View NCL Alaska Cruises
    View NCL Mexico Cruises
    View NCL South America Cruises

    Posted by Denise at 02:19 PM | Comments (0)

    October 13, 2009

    Tropical Strom Patricia May Affect Mexico Cruises

    Forescasters say Tropical Storm Patricia could reach the vicinity of Cabo San Lucas by early Wednesday. This strom was formed earlier this week south of Cabo, a popular Mexico cruise port.

    Royal Caribbean's Mariner of the Seas is in the region and already switched courise to avoid the storm. The 3,114 passenger cruise ship will spend today at sea instead of visiting Cabo San Lucas. A Royal Caribbean spokesperson says they have modified the current cruise itinerary to visit Cabo San Lucas after stops in Puerto Vallarta and Mazatlan this week, trying to avoid the storm.

    As of 5:00am Pacific Time this morning, Tropical Storm Patricia was approximately 140 miles south-southeast of the southern tip of the Baja Peninsula and was moving to the north about 6 miles per hour. The National Hurricane Center forecasts Patricia will strength flightl today. They also said it is unlikely to become a hurricane.

    An update at 3:45pm Pacific Time today states Tropical Storm Patricia has weakened. Forecasters now expect the storm to pass near or over the southern Baha Peninsula tonight and Wednesday.

    Posted by Denise at 06:10 PM | Comments (0)

    October 12, 2009

    More News on Oasis of the Seas


    On October 12th Richard Fain, Chairman & CEO for Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. wrote the following comments regarding the Oasis of the Seas on his blog. The ship is still scheduled to be built on time, however some of the shows at the AquaTheatre may not be shown on the first few cruises scheduled (which he calls shakedown cruises).

    "While this seatrial was one of the most successful of any I can remember, there were items that arose, albeit mostly small ones. One related to the "sails" on the AquaTheatre. When we were designing the space, our micro-climate expert calculated that under certain wind conditions, we could have uncomfortable winds coming from the stern and he designed a set of canvas sheets we could raise as needed to block that wind.

    His calculations proved accurate - the area was very comfortable regardless of the relative wind speed across the deck. Unfortunately, the sail canvas shrank and, while it was still big enough to protect our guests from the wind, the water features (fountains) weren?t so happy. In fact, one of the features is a water curtain that is quite lovely but was literally "blown away" by the wind under certain conditions. Fortunately, the fix is simple . . . we need to add a couple of small additional sails in strategic spots.

    A bigger concern arose more recently in the main theatre. The theatre has an exceptional level of rigging for lights, sets and displays and last week our entertainment group inspected the equipment. And it failed. Upon inspection, it turned out that the quality of the steel work supporting the rigging equipment was just not strong enough for the task. It is fixable - by adding stiffeners and better welding - but the repairs are extensive. The problem runs the entire width of the stage and supports a great deal of equipment. The job is simple, but it is extensive and it needs to be done right.

    The good news is that this repair work should be completed by the end of the week. The bad news is that the entertainers needed this time to set up and rehearse the shows. The schedule was already tight - there is little time after the space is ready to set up all the lighting, sound systems and special effects. The performers need a lot of time to rehearse such complex shows in such a dramatically new theatre. In fact, we often don?t even try to put on all our shows for the shakedown cruises to give more time for preparation. This time, however, we were so excited about the shows that we decided to push the envelope.

    Unfortunately, as a result of this delay, it now appears likely that we will not be ready to perform all our shows during the early shakedown cruises. This is a real disappointment but the delay took us beyond our comfort level to make sure the shows are up to snuff. The entertainment group are confident they will be fully ready in time for the first revenue cruise, but are looking for alternatives for the shakedown cruises. I?m sure they will find ways to give a sense of how special these facilities and these shows are.


    View Royal Caribbean Alaska Cruises
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    View Royal Caribbean Europe & Mediterranean Cruises
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    View Royal Caribbean Asia, Australia/New Zealand & Canada/New England Cruises

    Posted by Denise at 11:14 AM | Comments (0)

    Nieuw Amsterdam Photos

    It was a foggy day at the Fincantieri Shipyard on October 9th in Marghera, Italy. As you'll see below the Nieuw Amsterdam is coming along great....even in the fog!




    Posted by Denise at 11:07 AM | Comments (0)

    October 09, 2009

    Princess Introduces New Alaska Cruisetour Designed Especially for Families


    Family Fun Tour Adds Value with Variety of Included Extras and Discounted Fares

    SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (October 9, 2009) - With its stunning scenery, abundant wildlife, and plethora of active adventure opportunities, Alaska offers the perfect family vacation. To make it easier for families to plan a trip to the 49th state, Princess Cruises has added a fun new cruisetour option designed especially with family groups in mind.

    The 12-night cruisetour offers the best of Alaska by land and sea and includes a variety of special features not usually included in a cruisetour package. Families will have the opportunity to travel on a jetboat, pan for gold, take an interactive tour of Denali National Park, and experience what Alaska is like in the winter when it's many degrees below zero.


    The cruisetour (number: FUN) is offered at a 25 percent discount for all berths, so all members of the family are included in the special pricing.

    "This is really the ultimate family vacation," said Charlie Ball, president of Princess Tours. "Alaska is a wonderful travel destination with kids, so we wanted to make it easy and affordable to plan the perfect Alaska experience for everyone in the family."

    The Family Fun cruisetour includes a seven-night Voyage of the Glaciers cruise plus a five-night land tour featuring one night at Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge, two nights at Denali Princess Wilderness Lodge and two nights at Fairbanks Princess Riverside Lodge. At sea, families can also take advantage of Princess' many onboard programs especially for children, including a special Junior Ranger program in Glacier Bay National Park.


    In addition, the following special extras are included in the tour:

    Daily Breakfast - Everyone in the family can start their morning off with the most important meal of the day.

    Direct-to-the-Wilderness Rail Service with Lunch - Princess' acclaimed Direct-to-the-Wilderness rail service gets families to their wilderness lodge faster, and includes lunch aboard the train.

    Three Rivers Jetboat Tour (Mt. McKinley) - An exhilarating alternative to taking a motorcoach to Mt. McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge, this tour travels from Talkeetna to the lodge by jetboat, with stops along the river to view historic encampments and learn about the native wildlife.

    Arctic Blast (Denali) - Family members can experience winter in Alaska - in the summertime. This special chamber is chilled to wintertime temperatures, so visitors can find out what happens to hot water when it is thrown in the air and whether soap bubbles can survive the cold.

    Music of Denali Dinner Theater (Denali) - This rollicking musical comedy tells the legend of the first expedition to the summit of Mt. McKinley, accompanied by a hearty, family-style meal featuring smokehouse ribs and Alaska salmon.


    Experience Alaska with Alaska Geographic Tour (Denali) - A more intimate tour of Denali National Park, this special experience includes a variety of interactive experiences, including an enhanced view of the Denali ecosystem and current research taking place. The narrated bus tour takes guests 15 miles into the park to a beautiful river valley where they embark on a short walk to the historic Savage River Camp, where they can participate in a number of hands-on experiences.

    Denali Sourdough Expedition Breakfast (Denali) - While fueling up for the day with a family-style, Alaskan roadhouse-style breakfast, guests experience an unforgettable journey up Denali through breathtaking images in Laurent Dick's Climb Denali. Participants have the opportunity to meet this real mountain climber and ask questions about mountain climbing.


    Riverboat Cruise and El Dorado Goldmine Tour (Fairbanks) - Families can enjoy traveling on an authentic sternwheeler for a fully-narrated cruise along the Chena River and try their hands at gold panning at the El Dorado Gold Mine, where they will learn about Alaska's gold mining history.

    Fares for the Alaska Family Cruisetour (#FUN) start at $1,743 US per person for the first and second berths, and $1,191 US per person for the third and fourth berth passengers.

    Princess offers a variety of land/sea Alaska experience with itineraries ranging from three to eight nights. All cruisetour options feature at least two nights in the Denali National Park area, stays in Princess' own riverside wilderness lodges, and a seven-day Voyage of the Glaciers sailing with Glacier Bay National Park.

    More Details on Princess Cruises 13 Day Family Alaska Cruisetour!

    View Princess Cruises Alaska Cruises
    View Princess Cruises Alaska Cruisetours
    View Alaska Cruise & Cruisetour Specials

    Posted by Denise at 10:43 AM | Comments (0)

    October 08, 2009

    Holland America Line's Nieuw Amsterdam


    Holland America Line has just released renderings of the their newest ship Nieuw Amsterdam. It is currently under construction at the Fincantieri shipyard in Italy. The ship is scheduled to be named on July 4, 2010.

    Don't they look like the real thing!?! I can't wait to see this ship.

    The Atrium:

    Main Dining Room:

    Ocean Bar:

    Pinnacle Grill Bar:

    Pinnacle Grill Restaurant:

    Main Show Lounge:

    View Holland America Alaska Cruises
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    View Holland America Asia, Australia/New Zealand, Canada/New England & South America Cruises

    Check Out These Nieuw Amsterdam Cruise Deals . . .

    Nieuw Amsterdam - 7 Day Western Caribbean Cruises November 28, December 5 or 12, 2010 From $699 US!

    Nieuw Amsterdam - 7 Day Mediterranean Cruise July 7, 2010 From $1399 US!

    Nieuw Amsterdam - 12 Day Mediterranean Cruise July 26 or August 7, 2010 From $1899 US!

    Written by Denise Blackmore

    Photos Courtesty of Holland America Line

    Posted by Denise at 11:31 AM | Comments (0)

    NCL Deal of the Decade


    It's Time To Celebrate At Norwegian Cruise Line

    Come and celebrate a decade of monumental innovations at Norwegian Cruise Line. There has neve been a better time to book a cruise to NCL's Most popular destinations.

    Get amazing values, plus on-board benefits like:

  • Up to 14 dining options offering the hottest culinary trends
  • World-class live entertainment
  • Top-notch amenities like relaxing spas, pools and hot tubs
  • The most unique and flexible accommodations at sea
  • Time Fliens When You're Having Fun

    Now you can be a part of Norwegian Cruise Line's history, too. Just book a cruise by November 1, 2009, and you can sail through the end of April 2010 for an amazing value. Plus, 3rd-8th guests sail from $99*. There's not a moment to waste. Book now before time runs out.


    Don't wait. The clock runs out on Norwegian Cruise Line's Deals of the Decade 11/1/09.

    View Norwegian Cruise Line Alaska Cruises
    View Norwegian Cruise Line Europe & Mediterranean Cruises
    View Norwegian Cruise Line Mexican Riviera Cruises
    View Norwegian Cruise Line South America Cruises

    *Percent savings are based on the lowest published inside stateroom brochure rates; fares are cruise only in U.S. dollars, per person, based on double occupancy. Offers apply to select sailing(s). Offer is for new FIT reservations only. Qualifying FIT reservations can be included into existing group and count toward tour conductor credits. Singles pay 200 percent of applicable fare. Standard air add-ons are available. Guests who cancel and rebook must accept this promotion's terms and conditions. Cancellation fees for cruise, air, land and other charges will follow NCL schedule listed in the brochure, website and includes different schedules for Suites and Villas. Cancellation fees also apply based on the booking/sailing date; therefore, NCL strongly recommends the purchase of travel protection on all bookings. This promotion excludes airfare, ground transfers, government taxes and fees, on-board service charges and other personal expenditures. IMPORTANT NOTICE: Effective immediately, NCL is suspending the company's fuel supplement for all voyages at this time. The company reserves the right to reinstate the fuel supplement for all guests should the price of light sweet crude oil according to the NYMEX (New York Mercantile Exchange Index) increase above $65 per barrel. Offers are based on availability, are capacity controlled, and combinability with other offers is subject to change or cancellation at any time per NCL discretion. Other restrictions may apply. NCL is not responsible for typographical errors or omissions. ©2009 NCL CORPORATION LTD. SHIPS? REGISTRY: BAHAMAS AND USA. Promotion ends Sunday, November 1, at 11:59 p.m., Eastern Time

    Posted by Denise at 11:26 AM | Comments (0)

    October 07, 2009

    From Generals To Journalists: Crystal's 2010 World Cruise Enrichment


    LOS ANGELES, October 5, 2009 - Emmy Award-winning broadcaster Hugh Downs, Baseball Hall of Famer Johnny Bench and Prince of Tides author Pat Conroy are among influential leaders in media, sports, arts, sciences and international politics set for lectures and interactive workshops on Crystal Cruises' 108-day "Exploration of Ancient Empires" World Cruise in 2010. With nearly 200 guest presenters offering hundreds of classes and workshops, Crystal's sophisticated onboard enrichment is as stimulating as the awe-inspiring destinations. The epic journey departs from Miami on January 10, culminating in London on April 29.

    "Crystal's World Cruise guests value the learning experience of travel - gaining insights into the destinations they're visiting as well as the world and themselves," says Bret Bullock, vice president, entertainment. "The caliber of experts for our 2010 World Cruise will entertain, enlighten and inspire fascinating discussion."


    Among the many notable presenters are:

    Intellectual Luminaries
    Hugh Downs - Emmy Award-winning journalist and 20/20 host;
    Bill Toone - Conservation expert in recovering endangered species; and
    Dr. Bulent Atalay - Scientist, author and Renaissance and da Vinci authority.

    Military and Politics
    Brigadier General Nick Halley - Vietnam, Grenada and Desert Storm commander;
    Thomas W. Lippman - Washington Post Middle East Bureau Chief;
    Phil Gramm - Retired U.S. Republican senator from Texas; and
    Dinesh D'Souza - Best-selling author, scholar and former White House policy analyst.

    Arts and Americana
    Pat Conroy - Acclaimed author of The Prince of Tides;
    Johnny Bench - Baseball Hall of Fame catcher, and
    Rick Senat - Batman and Superman film producer

    Crystal's Creative Learning Institute will offer expanded programming, including additional classes through the Travel Channel Academy, Yamaha and Berlitz.

    The 2010 World Cruise visits 41 ports in 37 countries, including maiden calls at Port Elizabeth, South Africa; Bandar Abbas, Iran; Kuwait City, Kuwait; Manama, Bahrain; Khasab, Oman; Al-Fujairah, United Arab Emirates; and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Segments of 12 to 21 days are also available.

    World Cruise Two-for-One segment fares start at $6,340 US per person, double, plus a $500 or $1,000 US per person 'All Inclusive ? As You Wish' shipboard credit. Free North American airfare is available for two or more back-to-back segments.

    For information, terms and conditions or Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent at #1-800-738-8837.

    View Crystal Cruises Europe & Mediterranean Cruises
    View Crystal Cruises Asia, Australia/New Zealand, South America and Canada/New England Cruises

    Posted by Denise at 04:54 PM | Comments (0)

    October 06, 2009

    Two New Pride Of America Sailings Added In Spring 2010


    On sale Monday, new itinerary includes a day at sea in addition to four islands

    Miami - Oct 2, 2009 - Norwegian Cruise Line announced today that the company has added two new Hawaii cruises on Pride of America next spring. Pride of America is the only ship offering seven-day interisland cruises from Honolulu to all four of Hawaii's most beautiful islands. The two sailings go on sale Monday, October 5 with fares starting at $999 per person, based on double occupancy.

    The sailings on April 24 and May 1, 2010 will feature a new itinerary that includes a day at sea along with the four ports currently offered on Pride of America: Hilo, Hawaii; Kahului, Maui; Kona, Hawaii; and an overnight in Nawiliwili, Kauai. In addition, the two sailings will include an evening sail by Kilauea Volcano, a day cruise by the north coast of Molokai and an afternoon sail by the breathtaking Napali coast.

    Pride of America features the innovative attributes of Norwegian's Freestyle Cruising with a star spangled line up of eight culinary options, dynamic public rooms such as the Hollywood Theater, the expansive Rascal's Kids Center and the luxurious Santa Fe Spa & Fitness Center. The heart of the ship, the Capitol Atrium, is inspired by the Capitol Building and White House and features a decorative stone floor, impressive water feature and a stunning backlit glass dome.


    Pride of America offers an extensive choice of staterooms highlighted by an expansive Grand Suite, a broad range of family accommodations with more than 250 staterooms that interconnect, more than 660 balcony staterooms, as well as Family Suites, accommodating up to eight people.

    The ship features the latest in relaxation and fitness facilities with the Santa Fe Spa and Fitness Center. The Sports Deck includes a basketball and volleyball court.

    The large South Beach sunning and swimming area is inspired by Miami's Art Deco district and features some novel distractions including a gyroscope and bungee trampoline and activities capturing the energy and fun of Ocean Drive and Lincoln Road.

    The ship also offers the best meeting facilities at sea with the largest conference facilities and the only dedicated meeting deck on water. Plus, on-board meetings may qualify for both corporate and individual federal tax deductions. For more information, go to www.ncl.com/incentives.

    The new sailings were added as a result of the ship's scheduled dry dock being postponed to a later date. To book one of these new sailings on Pride of America please contact a travel agent at #1-800-738-8837.

    About Norwegian Cruise Line
    Norwegian Cruise Line is the innovator in cruise travel with a 43-year history of breaking the boundaries of traditional cruising, most notably with the introduction of Freestyle Cruising which has revolutionized the industry by allowing guests more freedom and flexibility.

    Today, Norwegian has the youngest fleet in the industry with 11 purpose-built Freestyle Cruising ships, providing guests the opportunity to enjoy a relaxed cruise vacation on the newest, most contemporary ships at sea.

    Norwegian is presently building Norwegian Epic, the company's largest and most innovative Freestyle Cruising ship to date, for delivery in summer 2010. Norwegian Cruise Line is the official cruise line of Blue Man Group, debuting for the first time at sea on Norwegian Epic.

    View NCL Alaska Cruises
    View NCL Europea & Mediterranean Cruises
    View NCL Mexico Cruises
    View NCL South America Cruises

    Posted by Denise at 10:33 AM | Comments (0)

    Cruise Sale! Royal Caribbean Has Two Day Cruise Sale


    Royal Caribbean International just launched its biggest and best sale of the year. The two day WOW Sale, as it's being called, offers guests who book today and tomorrow up to $200 US Onboard Credits per stateroom! The cruise line is also offering a 50% reduced deposit to book a cruise vacation.

    The sale is for cruises and cruisetour packages departing on or after December 1, 2009. It includes cruises onboard Oasis of the Seas after April 1, 2010. WOW SALE ON OCTOBER 6TH AND 7TH!

    View Royal Caribbean Alaska Cruise Deals
    View Royal Caribbean Europe & Mediterranean Cruise Deals
    View Royal Caribbean Mexico Cruise Deals
    View Royal Caribbean Cruise Deals to other destinations

    Posted by Denise at 10:27 AM | Comments (0)

    October 05, 2009


    Fort Lauderdale October 01, 2009 - Thousands of cruises, and every one of them an opportunity to earn extra income and make a client especially happy: those are the rewards for travel agents who participate in Cruise Lines International Association's "World's Largest Cruise Night" promotion, October 14. Virtually all of CLIA's 25 member lines are taking part, offering agents special assistance, the opportunity to provide extra-value incentives to their clients in the form of discounts or shipboard credits and, in some cases, earn bonus commissions, and even a free cruise.

    "Every sale during World's Largest Cruise Night is added revenue at a time when we all need it and the member lines of CLIA are doing everything they can to help their agent partners sell more cruises," said Terry Dale, CLIA's president and CEO. In addition to the cruise line incentives described below, CLIA and its cruise lines are aggressively promoting WLCN online and through a variety of media, and making it easy for agents to participate with a comprehensive World's Largest Cruise Night resource center on the CLIA website, www.cruising.org.

    Here are some of the ways CLIA member cruise lines are helping agents take advantage of World's Largest Cruise Night:

    Award-winning European river cruise line, AMAWATERWAYS, is offering savings up to $3,000 per stateroom on select cruise departures in 2009 and $1300 per stateroom in 2010.

    New FIT bookings on 2010 European sailings made October 14-16 are eligible for onboard credits of $300-$500 per stateroom based on category of accommodation.

    Carnival awards "Cash Back" of $70 to $200 per stateroom on bookings of selected 2010 voyages from a variety of North American homeports.

    New FIT bookings on selected sailings made October 14-16 are offered onboard credits of $50 to $200 per stateroom depending on length of sailing.

    In addition to guests receiving a $50 onboard credit per cabin on Caribbean and European sailings through December 2010. The booking window is October 14-31.

    Vacationers are offered a $100 per person discount on most 2009 and 2010 departures with bookings made between October 14 and November 7.

    Clients will receive onboard credits of $50-$300 per stateroom depending on sailing and accommodations, plus a waiver of the deposit on a second person in the booking.

    $50-$100 onboard credit per stateroom on bookings made Oct. 14-28 are offered on sailings between January 3, 2010 and December 19, 2010.

    Special fares and reduced deposits will be communicated to participating travel agents on a wide variety of destinations, including Alaska, the Caribbean and Europe.

    A "free companion" fare is offered for bookings on sailings departing October through December for selected Norwegian coastal cruises.

    Guests booking selected sailings in the Caribbean on MSC Poesia will receive shipboard credits of up to $200.

    Onboard credits ranging up to $250, depending on category of accommodations, plus half-off standard cruise deposits are offered on more than 300 popular sailings around the world.

    Paul Gauguin Cruises is offering a $100 per guest shipboard credit (maximum $200 per stateroom) for new bookings made between October 14-October 31 for 2010 departures.

    Guests receive an onboard value booklet valued at $120 as well as reduced $100 per person deposits on all sailings other than world cruises or world cruise segments of 45 days or longer in which case the deposit is five percent of the cruise fare.

    Regent is offering $100 per guest shipboard credits (maximum $200 per suite) for seven-night or longer cruises in 2009 and 2010 with bookings made between October 1 and November 14.

    Royal Caribbean International's "Create Your Own Sale" event features a choice for agent partners of up to $200 off per stateroom, onboard credits of up to $100 per stateroom, reduced deposits or special amenities for bookings on select departures made October 12-16. Agents can access a dedicated microsite containing Royal Caribbean's offers through http://www.cruisingpower.com.

    Agents receive, upon request, a $100 per booking bonus commission for bookings made during the Virtual WLCN period (October 1-31).

    New bookings made between October 1-31 on SeaDream yachts will be entitled to a $100 per stateroom spa credit.

    Silversea is offering a $100 per person savings certificate (maximum $200 per suite) for new bookings made October 14-October 28 on seven-night or longer sailings in 2009 and 2010.

    Consumers save up to $1,000 per person on 2010 Europe River Cruises by paying in full by October 31, 2009. Participating travel agents are offered an additional $100 per person discount on all 2009 and 2010 Savings Offers for bookings made between October 14-21.

    Consumers participating in CLIA's WLCN will receive a $50 per person shipboard credit for selected sailings on Wind Surf, Wind Star and Wind Spirit between January and March, 2010. Booking window is October 14-November 9,2009.

    About CLIA
    The nonprofit Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) is North America's largest cruise industry organization. CLIA represents the interests of 25 member lines and participates in the regulatory and policy development process while supporting measures that foster a safe, secure and healthy cruise ship environment. CLIA is also engaged in travel agent training, research and marketing communications to promote the value and desirability of cruise vacations and counts as members 16,000 travel agencies.

    For More Information About Our Cruise Offers Here!

    Posted by Denise at 04:54 PM | Comments (0)

    October 02, 2009

    Oasis of the Seas . . . new photos!

    The Oasis of the Seas is a brand new ship being built by Royal Caribbean International. If you haven't yet heard, this ship will be the largest at sea.

    Royal Caribbean is excited to launch this ship in November 2009 to travel agents and then to the public in December. Its first cruise is December 1st for 4 nights roundtrip Fort Lauderdale, FL. Then it will offer weekly 7 days cruises to the Eastern Caribbean islands of St. Thomas, St. Maarten and Nassau/Bahamas.

    They've just started adding furniture to the ship. I've included pictures below.

    H20 Zone:

    Video Arcade:

    Teen Dance Floor:
    The ceiling is a mirror so look carefully! :)

    Science Lab (for the kids):

    Richard Fain is quoted saying this about the kids area onboard Oasis of the Seas "Our philosophy has two distinct objectives. Firstly, we try to make the activities so entertaining for kids and teens that they enjoy themselves. Our Adventure Ocean program has been incredibly successful. Once a kid samples it, we have a customer for life (and don?t kid yourself that the parent has any say).

    The second objective is to have such great activities for the kids and teens that they have no interest in going to the adult areas. We do have adult areas onboard where only adults are admitted, but the best way to keep kids out the adult spaces is to have such wonderful dedicated kid spaces that they don?t want to go into the adult equivalents."

    Written by Denise Blackmore

    Posted by Denise at 01:57 PM | Comments (0)

    Holland America Line's Eurodam

    Holland America Line's brand new ship Eurodam is currently cruising Canada/New England and seen below it's in Gaspe, Quebec in think fog.


    I had the pleasure of touring this ship last November while it was in St. Thomas. I got to see all the public areas and then dined at the Tamarind Restaurant for lunch. It was such a treat! I've been on over 40 cruise vacations and have toured twice as many ships . . . I'm lucky because I live in Vancouver so I get the opportunity every summer! :) The Eurodam is one of my very favourite ships.

    The ship is beautifully decorated and there were just so many things that impressed me. I think moving the Explorations cafe up to the top of the ship across from the Crow's Nest (forward) was a smart idea because it offers great views while you sit and sip your coffee, listen to music or read a book. I loved the cabana's by the pool. For a small fee you get celebrity treatment for a full or half day. The restaurants are incredible and I loved the modern decor.

    One item I would point out is Category VT on Observation Deck. I did not get in to see the staterooms, but from outside of the ship I could see the balconies are small. It's just a step out, no table or chair to sit on.

    Written by Denise Blackmore

    Posted by Denise at 01:52 PM | Comments (0)

    October 01, 2009



    MIAMI, September 16, 2009 - Oceania Cruises has announced its most extensive and exotic line-up of sailings to Africa, Asia, South America and the Caribbean for winter 2010-2011. A limited-time offer of free air and bonus savings of up to $3,000 per stateroom off of 2-for-1 cruise fares means that voyages start at only $1,499 per guest.

    Offered November 2010 through April 2011, Oceania Cruises' Winter Collection features 30 new ports of call, including Cape Town, South Africa; Walvis Bay, Namibia; and Rangoon, Myanmar, just to name a few. Based on feedback from past guests and agent partners, the line added maiden voyages around Africa, an expanded range of Asia and Caribbean cruises - all tolled, 13 exciting new itineraries.

    "Our loyal repeaters and first-time guests alike will appreciate the richness and diversity of our new Winter Collection," stated Bob Binder, Oceania Cruises' president. "We continually seek out new and intriguing destinations to delight discriminating travelers while providing the greatest possible value and Oceania Cruises' acclaimed onboard experience."

    Africa & Asia - Nautica
    With itineraries 15 to 35 days, Nautica will focus on Asia with eight unique cruises, seven of which are new. For the very first time, the line will visit majestic Africa. Enchanted Africa is a grand 30-day circumnavigation from Istanbul to Cape Town that is followed by Safaris, Sands & Splendors - a new 35-day cruise from Cape Town to Singapore via the Seychelles, Sri Lanka and Maldives.

    South America - Insignia
    For 2011, Oceania Cruises' Insignia will operate all-new itineraries. Guests can choose from seven 12- to 22-day cruises that visit the exotic coastal villages of Brazil and cosmopolitan icons like Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires. The ship evens offer a taste of remote reaches on Antarctica & the Fjords, a 22-day voyage that includes the Antarctic Peninsula, Falkland Islands and Chilean Fjords.

    Caribbean & the Panama Canal - Regatta
    One of the company's most popular itineraries - Amazon Adventure - is a 24-day round-trip sailing from Miami onboard Regatta. This voyage annually sells so briskly the company has added a second departure in mid-March. Also new are two, 10-day Mayan Mystique cruises to western Caribbean ports and a 14-day Southern Treasures sailing, which combines the warmth of the tropics, the history of the Colonial South and the charm of Bermuda.

    About Oceania Cruises:
    Oceania Cruises(r) is the world's only upper-premium cruise line and offers an unrivaled combination of the finest cuisine at sea, elegant accommodations, exceptional personalized service and extraordinary value. Award-winning itineraries visit more than 300 ports in Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Asia, and the Americas aboard three luxurious, 684-guest ships: Regatta, Insignia and, Nautica. The 1,258-guest Marina, the first ship designed specifically for the Upper Premium market segment, joins the fleet in winter 2010.

    About Prestige Cruise Holdings:
    Prestige Cruise Holdings is the parent company of Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises. Formed in 2007 to manage select assets in Apollo Management's cruise investment portfolio, PCH is led by Chairman and CEO Frank Del Rio, the founder of Oceania Cruises. PCH is the market leader in the upper-premium and luxury segments of the cruise industry with nearly 4,000 berths between the Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises brands, a number the company expects will grow to more than 6,500 berths by 2011.

    Some Oceania Cruise Specials . . .

    24 Day Amazon Cruise - November 27, 2010 Regatta From $4299 US Including Free Air

    30 Day Africa Cruise - November 11, 2010 Nautica From $6999 US Including Free Air

    12 Day South America Cruise - December 21, 2010 Insignia From $3399 US Including Free Air

    14 Day Mediterranean Cruise - June 4, 2010 Nautica From $4928 US Including Free Air

    Call #1-800-738-8837 for more information!

    Posted by Denise at 10:10 AM | Comments (0)

    Two Cruise Ships Collided in Cozumel Wednesday

    Wednesday night in Cozumel, Mexico the Carnival Legend (a Carnival Cruise Line ship) was pulling out of the port when it collided with the Enchantment of the Seas (a Royal Caribbean Cruise Line ship). Carnival says the 2,124 passenger ship had just untied from its berth when it was caught by heavy winds and pushed into the other ship.

    "Extremely strong winds pushed the vessel up against the side of Royal Caribbean's Enchantment of the Seas," the line says in a statement to USA Today. "The (Royal Caaribbean) ship was at dock when the incident occurred. The Carnival Legend sustained broken glass and other minor damage to some open deck areas."

    The USA Today is reporting that a Royal Caribbean spokeswomen is saying the Enchantment of the Seas suffered what appears to be minor damage to the stern of the ship and ship railings. They have also noted spokespeople for both cruise lines say they have received no reports of injuries on board their respective ships resulting from the incident.

    "All appropriate authorities have been notified," Carnival says in its statement. "Following an examination of the vessel by Mexican authorities, the Carnival Legend was cleared to sail on to Belize, its next scheduled port of call."

    A passenger onboard the Enchantment of the Seas wrote this on his personal blog page about the incident: "OK, so we're sitting in port. A few of us are on the pool deck watching the Carnival Legend pull out of port. As we're watching it, it's getting closer and closer. It looked like the wind was pushing the other ship toward us. I looked down and saw a tug boat try to get between the two boats, but it was too late. Then the collison became inevitable. There was some crunching and breaking glass noises and the ship rocked to one side a little. It was such a slow crash that it was barely noticeable. We could see scraped paint on the other ship. Really, nobody was hurt and we're waiting for the all-clear from the harbor master to leave port."

    The USA Today also reports that they spoke to a client onboard the Enchantment of the Seas named Greg Land. This passenger watched the ship from the balcony of his suite. He states "A storm began to kick up over the area with gusts up to 60 knots, and this caused the Carnival Legend to be carried by the currents closer and closer to the Enchantment. We happened to be out on the deck and saw the Legend getting closer and closer to us. The side of the legend was dented badly, and the glass railings on the (Legend's) promenade deck were shattered with broken glass everywhere. Immediately, crew members on both ships were called into their emergency positions and passenger ran up on deck to see what had bumped and rattled the two ships so badly."

    The passenger also notes it took several attempts to pull the Carnival Legend back into its dock space due to the heavy winds. Cozumel authorities eventually cleared both ships after the incident, and both ships are heading to their next stops . . . which is Belize City, Belize for both ships.

    Written by Denise Blackmore

    Posted by Denise at 09:33 AM | Comments (0)