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November 25, 2009

Princess Cruises Takes Viewers Behind the Scenes as Tahitian Princess is Transformed into Ocean Princess

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Fifth Online Drydock Journal Lets Enthusiasts Follow Along with Regular Updates

SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (November 23, 2009) - Capping a year of taking viewers behind the scenes as ships go through drydock, Princess Cruises is again offering an opportunity to follow a vessel through the renovation process. In the newest installment of the Princess online drydock journal, the current Tahitian Princess will not only undergo a makeover, but also get a new name. The vessel, one of the small ships of Princess, will be transformed into Ocean Princess during the two-week process, giving her a new moniker reflecting her global range of fascinating itineraries.

The fifth in this unprecedented series, the Ocean Princess Drydock Journal will run through December 2 on www.princess.com, and will be updated regularly with photos as the ship progresses through its drydock at Keppel Shipyard in Singapore. Viewers can follow along as the ship's name is removed and replaced on the bow and throughout the vessel - including on equipment such as the lifeboats. The journal will also chronicle changes as the ship is lifted from the water and receives a new coating of energy-efficient silicone paint, plus the interior refurbishments, with new upholstery, carpet and flooring.

"Response to our drydock journals has been remarkable - passengers love to see what's done to the ship and how much work is involved in such a short time," said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises executive vice president. "This latest journal will give cruise fans yet another insiders' peek behind the scenes, with the added interest in seeing the name change."

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

After the drydock the newly named Ocean Princess will set sail on a 16-day Treasures of Southeast Asia cruise from Singapore to Shanghai, beginning a season of unique Asia, India and Africa sailings, followed by a summer of European voyages.

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

Cruise Specials with Princess Cruises . . .

7 Day Mexican Riviera Cruise on Sapphire Princess From $349 US!

7 Day Eastern Caribbean Cruise on Caribbean Princess From $349 US!

10 Day Panama Canal Cruise on Island Princess From $799 US!

10 Day Mexican Riviera Cruise on Sea Princess From $869 US!

10 Day Baltic / Scandinavia Riviera Cruise on Star Princess From $1240 US!

View Princess Cruises Alaska Cruises
View Princess Cruises Europe & Mediterranean Cruises
View Princess Cruises Tahiti Cruises
View Princess Cruises Mexico Cruises
View Princess Cruises Asia, Australia / New Zealand, Canada / New England & More

Posted by Denise at 10:22 AM | Comments (0)

November 20, 2009

ROYAL CARIBBEAN INTERNATIONAL APPOINTS SEVEN GODMOTHERS FOR OASIS OF THE SEAS

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An Unprecedented Assembly of Performers, Olympians, Philanthropists and Actors to Preside Over Seven Neighborhoods on the World's Largest and Most Revolutionary Cruise Ship

MIAMI, Nov. 18, 2009 - When Royal Caribbean International officially names its newest cruise ship, Oasis of the Seas, on Monday, Nov. 30, 2009, the global cruise line will continue its tradition of innovation by putting a new twist on one of maritime's longest standing traditions. While normally bestowing the honor of godmother on one special person, Royal Caribbean has chosen seven extraordinary godmothers to represent the seven signature neighborhoods onboard Oasis of the Seas. Each of the seven godmothers was chosen because they personify strength of character, exemplify the spirit of giving, and are role models for men, women and children alike. The godmothers include:

  • Gloria Estefan, world-renowned singer, songwriter, actor and author, who was godmother of Royal Caribbean's Empress of the Seas

  • Michelle Kwan, the Olympic Games medalist is an all-time great and the most decorated figure skater in United States history, and is also an American Public Diplomacy envoy promoting education, positive health practices and respect for diversity

  • Jane Seymore, a multiple Emmy and Golden Globe winning actor, as well as an Officer of the British Empire, who remains actively involved in the J and J Foundation benefiting children in need. Based on her philosophy that keeping an open heart despite adversity can bring a wealth of love, hope and inspiration into life, she founded the website www.KeepAnOpenHeart.com, a community where people can share stories and engage in a dialogue about living with an open heart.

  • Dara Torres, twelve-time Olympic medalist and oldest female swimmer to compete in a record five Olympic games (1984, 1988, 1992, 2000 and 2008)

  • Keshia Knight Pulliam, film and television actress is well-known for her role as Rudy Huxtable on the classic sitcom "The Cosby Show." The youngest actress ever nominated for an Emmy Award when she was only 6 years old, she presently stars on the TBS television comedy "Tyler Perry's House of Payne" and was most recently seen starring in the hit motion picture "Madea Goes To Jail."

  • Shawn Johnson, four-time medalist at the 2008 Olympic games for women's gymnastics and cancer philanthropist, who in addition to serving as a godmother for Oasis of the Seas, will be granting wishes onboard as part of her work with the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

  • Daisy Fuentes, international television personality and producer, beauty and fitness expert, and recognized role model for Latin-American women in the United States, who is committed to improving children?s health and treatments through St. Jude's Children's Hospital, Starlight Children?s Foundation and the March of Dimes
  • "It is a humbling and equally exciting privilege to have these seven exemplary women take on the responsibility of being godmothers of Oasis of the Seas," said Richard D. Fain, chairman and CEO, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd. "We felt it only fitting that our most revolutionary ship be named by an outstanding group of women who embody the same excellence in their respective fields."

    The seven women will take their posts to officially name the ship at a ceremony during a one-night inaugural celebration-fundraiser onboard Oasis of the Seas to benefit the non-profit Make-A-Wish Foundation, which grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions. Tickets for the once-in-a-lifetime event begin at $500 per person. Guests who wish to continue their adventure onboard will receive an exclusive discount price, beginning at $650 per person, on a four-night cruise package sailing to the cruise line's private beach destination, Labadee, departing the morning following the event on Tuesday, Dec. 1 (rates based on double-occupancy and stateroom package).

    Bookings are also available for Oasis of the Seas' inaugural sailing departing on Saturday, Dec. 5. The inaugural sailing will include exclusive entertainment and gifts for guests to commemorate the special occasion.

    As the ultimate expression of Royal Caribbean's legacy of imagination and innovation, Oasis of the Seas introduces unique industry "firsts" including a neighborhood concept ? seven main themed areas providing guests with the opportunity to seek out relevant experiences based on their personal style, preference or mood. Within these seven neighborhoods ? Central Park, Boardwalk, the Royal Promenade, Pool & Sports Zone, Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Center, Entertainment Place and Youth Zone ? are extraordinary elements such as the first living park at sea; a thrilling zip line that races diagonally nine-decks above an open-air atrium; an original handcrafted carousel; 28 multilevel urban-style loft suites boasting floor-to-ceiling windows; an amphitheater-style theater that serves as a pool by day and a dazzling ocean front theater by night; and an array of epicurean innovations that allow for new culinary experiences each day of a guest's cruise vacation.

    Oasis of the Seas is the largest and most revolutionary cruise ship in the world. An architectural marvel at sea, she spans 16 decks, encompasses 225,282 gross registered tons, carries 5,400 guests at double occupancy, and features 2,700 staterooms. Oasis of the Seas is the first ship to tout the cruise line's new neighborhood concept of seven distinct themed areas, which includes Central Park, Boardwalk, the Royal Promenade, the Pool and Sports Zone, Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Center, Entertainment Place and Youth Zone. The ship will sail from her home port of Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Additional information is available at www.oasisoftheseas.com.

    Royal Caribbean International is a global cruise brand with 21 ships currently in service and one under construction. The line also offers unique cruise tour land packages in Alaska, Canada, Dubai, Europe, and Australia and New Zealand. For additional information or to make reservations, call a travel agent at #1-800-738-8837.

    Take a look at these great deals onboard Oasis of the Seas . . .


    7 night Western Caribbean cruise September 3, 2010 From $729 US!

    7 night Eastern Caribbean cruise September 10, 2010 From $729 US!

    14 night Western & Eastern Caribbean cruise September 3, 2010 From $1458 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 10:54 AM | Comments (0)

    November 18, 2009

    MSC Cruises? Express Check-in Will Expedite Embarkation for its Guests

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    MSC Express - MSC Cruises' online express check-in - is designed to make it virtually effortless for guests to meet new check-in requirements.

    Each cruise guest will now be required to check-in online at least 72 hours (3 days) before sailing. This will enable the cruise line to comply with a government mandate to submit passenger manifests 72 hours prior to departure.

    MSC Express Web Check-In is required before any tickets (paper or e-tickets) can be issued.

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    In order to utilize MSC Express, guests can visit the line's consumer website (www.MSCCruisesUSA.com) or go directly to www.MSCCruisesUSA.com/mscexpress, complete a short form with their booking information and click to send. Guests who do not have Internet access may ask their agent for assistance in completing the form.

    The completed printed form, cruise ticket and required identification information can then be presented at the check-in desk at the port.

    "With MSC Express Web Check-in, guests will be able to 'get on board' faster than ever, saving them valuable time and letting them start their MSC Cruises experience as soon as possible," says Richard E. Sasso, president and CEO of MSC Cruises, USA.

    For more information about MSC Cruises call a travel professional at #1-800-738-8837.

    Check out some fabulous deals with MSC Cruises in 2010 . . .

    3 Day Bahamas Cruise April 24, 2010 on MSC Poesia From $275 USD!

    7 Day Western Caribbean Cruise January 16, 2010 on MSC Poesia From $444 USD!

    7 Day Eastern Caribbean Cruise February 20, 2010 on MSC Poesia From $554 USD!

    7 Day Mediterranean Cruise October 18, 2010 on MSC Lirica From $728 USD!

    7 Day New England & Canada Cruise October 9, 2010 on MSC Poesia From $746 USD!

    7 Day Bermuda Cruise April 17, 2010 on MSC Poesia From $752 USD!

    Posted by Denise at 05:12 PM | Comments (0)

    November 16, 2009

    ROYAL CARIBBEAN OASIS OF THE SEAS ARRIVES IN FORT LAUDERDALE, FL

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    World's Largest and Most Revolutionary Cruise Ship Sails into her Home Port of Port Everglades Flanked by Ceremonial Maritime Escort

    MIAMI, November 13, 2009 - Royal Caribbean International's newest cruise ship - the highly anticipated Oasis of the Seas - made her global debut today, arriving into her home port of Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. following a 14-day transatlantic crossing from Turku, Finland. Hundreds of eager onlookers - ranging from Royal Caribbean top executives to local government officials, residents and media - came out to welcome Oasis of the Seas to the United States for the first time and to be among the first to catch a glimpse of the world's most revolutionary cruise ship.

    In the course of the next six days, the ship will undergo the final touches in preparation for pre-inaugural festivities kicking off with an exclusive private performance by pop music artist Rihanna, the first performer ever to take the stage on Oasis of the Seas', Thursday, Nov. 19, 2009. Oasis of the Seas will then make her national television premiere on ABC's "Good Morning America," Friday, Nov. 20, from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. (EST). Until that time, eager consumers can track her progress during the pre-inaugural activities via webisodes and updates, which are available at www.oasisoftheseas.com as well as join the conversation on Twitter by following @OasisandAllure and including #Oasisishere in Tweets.

    The official naming ceremony for Oasis of the Seas will take place on Monday, Nov. 30 during a one night inaugural celebration fundraiser to benefit the non-profit Make-A-Wish Foundation, which grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions. Tickets for the once-in-a-lifetime event begin at $750 per person. Guests who wish to continue their adventure onboard will receive an exclusive discount price, beginning at $650 per person, on a four-night cruise package sailing to the cruise line's private beach destination, Labadee, departing the morning following the event on Tuesday, Dec. 1 (rates based on double-occupancy and stateroom package).

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    The ultimate expression of Royal Caribbean's legacy of imagination and innovation, Oasis of the Seas introduces unique industry "firsts" including a neighborhood concept - seven main themed areas providing guests with the opportunity to seek out relevant experiences based on their personal style, preference or mood. Within these seven neighborhoods - Central Park, Boardwalk, the Royal Promenade, Pool & Sports Zone, Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Center, Entertainment Place and Youth Zone - are extraordinary elements such as the first living park at sea; a thrilling zip line that races diagonally nine-decks above an open-air atrium; an original handcrafted carousel; 28 multilevel urban-style loft suites boasting floor-to-ceiling windows; an amphitheater-style theater that serves as a pool by day and a dazzling ocean front theater by night; and an array of epicurean innovations that allow for new culinary experiences each day of a guest's cruise vacation.

    Oasis of the Seas is the largest and most revolutionary cruise ship in the world. An architectural marvel at sea, she spans 16 decks, encompasses 225,282 gross registered tons, carries 5,400 guests at double occupancy, and features 2,700 staterooms. Oasis of the Seas is the first ship to tout the cruise line's new neighborhood concept of seven distinct themed areas, which includes Central Park, Boardwalk, the Royal Promenade, the Pool and Sports Zone, Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Center, Entertainment Place and Youth Zone. The ship will sail from her home port of Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Additional information is available at www.oasisoftheseas.com.

    Royal Caribbean International is a global cruise brand with 21 ships currently in service and one under construction. The line also offers unique cruise tour land packages in Alaska, Canada, Dubai, Europe, and Australia and New Zealand. For additional information or to make reservations, call a travel agent at #1-800-738-8837.

    Take a look at these great deals onboard Oasis of the Seas . . .


    7 night Western Caribbean cruise September 3, 2010 From $729 US!

    7 night Eastern Caribbean cruise September 10, 2010 From $729 US!

    14 night Western & Eastern Caribbean cruise September 3, 2010 From $1458 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 02:03 PM | Comments (0)

    November 06, 2009

    Oasis of the Seas Hits Bad Weather!

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    Lisa Bauer gives us an update from the Oasis of the Seas crossing the Atlantic Ocean.

    "Well the big story on Oasis today is the weather. We hit some pretty severe storms, and the word from the bridge is that we have at least 60 mph winds fairly regular and some waves at least 49 feet! The amazing thing is how well the ship is handling the weather. I heard someone say this is the worst weather this ship would encounter in 20 years time. Lucky me that I have the privilege of being onboard to experience it. Surprisingly, I am usually very susceptible to sea sickness, but I attended all my meetings today, my staff meeting/conference calls with Miami, and basically was fine. I'm shocked. (Unfortunately, we were meant to open Cupcake Cupboard today, but the ladies from there were a little under the weather, so that is on the agenda for tomorrow now).

    Last night we had the grand opening of the casino and had a Crew Casino Night. It was really fun. 100% of the profits from last night go to the crew welfare fund onboard. I've never seen a casino so busy. I definitely contributed at the craps table. We had some issues with the slots and the response time on the automated tickets, so we are working through that currently. We have another crew casino night on Saturday, so hopefully all will be working well. The casino on Oasis is 75% larger than Freedom Class, and the bar is really cool, because it isn't set up like a pass through bar as it is on other ships, but it is now the center of the room. I sat there for awhile last night and it was really a great gathering space for everyone to either meet, or to tell how much they won or lost. I was so thrilled with how engaging the casino staff was to everyone. They asked everyone?s name, and wished us all good luck, and always used our names when we were betting.

    Today we also officially opened Vintages Wine Bar. There are so many cool things about Vintages on Oasis. In addition to the outdoor seating, we are also introducing a "tapas style" menu. Guests will be able to order from a very robust menu of small tasting at a la carte pricing. We had a sampling of all the offerings, and I must say that I had to cancel dinner plans tonight because the tastings were definitely enough food for dinner. Offerings range from Gazpacho to olives, to homemade guacamole to queso manchego to an amazing array of sweet delights for dessert. I would actually prefer this for a dinner for an evening, because the selection is so great. I would be remiss if I didn?t mention the wines at Vintages. Tonight several of us sat at the wine tasting table that features a very large bottle of Caymus special select Cabernet Sauvignon. Caymus created two of these bottles exclusively for Royal Caribbean. One is onboard, and the other will be part of a charity auction next fall. I couldn?t believe it when my team told me that the bottle onboard actually would hold almost 750 bottles (yes bottles) of this yummy Cab. I think sitting at this table enjoying a nice glass of wine will be a guest highlight for sure.

    So while I did very well with the weather today, I am sorry to report I didn't make it to the gym. I tried to do my pilates with my exercise ball in the room, but to say that was disaster is an under statement. So let's see what tomorrow brings us. If it isn?t smoother sailing, I will have to go see my good friend Captain Bill and have a serious discussion.

    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 11:22 AM | Comments (0)

    November 03, 2009

    Nieuw Amsterdam Float Out!

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    Holland America Line had a float out ceremony for the Nieuw Amsterdam on Friday, October 30th. It was located at the Fincantieri's Marghera shipyard.

    The godmother for the ship, Hana Alice Rijkaart, was at the ceremony. She is the wife of Pieter Rijkaart, the director of newbuilds for Holland America who just celebrated 45 years with Holland America Line.

    Take a look at these great photos!

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    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 11:36 AM | Comments (0)

    November 02, 2009

    Oasis Has Set Sail!

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    Lisa Bauer, the Senior VP of Hotel Operations for Royal Caribbean, is onboard the Oasis of the Seas. Over the next two weeks Lisa is onboard the Oasis of the Seas as the ship crosses the Atlantic to North America. Here's what she had to say today . . .

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    "We set sail! This morning at daybreak, we began our 12 day journey to our new home in Port Everglades. It was a postcard morning, not a cloud in the sky and the sunrise was stunning. It was really the perfect way for Turku, Finland to send off Oasis of the Seas. Everyone had chills, and it wasn't because it was -7C either.

    The ship has a really nice vibe. The crew is getting to experience the various venues as we open them up. We plan to open a few outlets a day to give the crew time to practice. Today we officially opened up Sorrento's Pizzeria. It is a great location centrally located on Royal Promenade. There are some great new enhancements in Sorrento's. Guests will be able to "design" their own pizza and pick their own personal toppings. (I'm boring, I did extra cheese and Pepperoni). There are tons of toppings to choose from. In addition to being able to get the traditional slice, guests can also elect to get the whole pie. The other great new change is guests can order the entire pie and then take it with them to go as well. I can just imagine sitting on a balcony in Boardwalk watching the show in the AquaTheatre eating a pizza! The crew did great with the opening today. Lots of smiling faces, and no, I didn?t have the entire pizza, just 2 slices.

    We also officially kicked off our daily leadership meeting today. All the division heads from shipboard and shoreside from hotel, marine, and newbuild are providing updates on how the days training went, results of stress tests, and how progress is being made in various areas. The teamwork is really great and these meetings will ensure we keep in close communication during the crossing.

    We are opening up Dazzles tonight for the crew, so will have an update on how that went tomorrow!"

    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 12:55 PM | Comments (0)