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Princess Cruises Announces 2015-2016 Americas Sailings

Written by: Cruise News

April 23, 2014 – Today Princess Cruises announced its 2015-2016 Americas cruise itineraries including Caribbean, Canada and New England, Panama Canal, Mexico, Hawaiian Islands and West Coast cruises. The array of cruise vacations departing from U.S. ports range from three to 28 days and go on sale May 13.

In total, 12 ships will sail on more than 230 departures on 48 itineraries to 86 destinations. Guests will have the opportunity to sail on Princess’ two newest cruise ships to the Caribbean – Royal Princess and Regal Princess while for the first time ever, two of the line’s largest sister ships, Crown Princess and Ruby Princess, will be positioned together on the West Coast. In addition, Princess will offer a nostalgic 50th anniversary cruise to Mexico and an all-new, five-day Mexico sampler cruise with an overnight stay in Cabo San Lucas.

“The close-to-home departure ports, combined with the variety of cruise lengths and some of our most exciting ships, will offer our guests some amazing vacation experiences,” said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises president.

Full Details of Princess Cruises’ 2015-2016 America’s season include:

Canada & New England Cruises
Guests can enjoy the fall foliage on two ships sailing from the East Coast in September and October. Regal Princess will sail on seven-day voyages roundtrip from New York to the New England ports of Newport, Boston and Bar Harbor, and the Atlantic Canadian ports of Saint John and Halifax. Caribbean Princess will sail on the line’s popular 10-day itinerary between New York and Quebec, including an overnight in Quebec and calls to the charming seaside villages of Gaspé and Ville Saguenay, Quebec in addition to the ports of Newport, Boston, Portland, Saint John and Halifax.

Caribbean Cruises
Offering sailings to the Caribbean from Ft. Lauderdale and Houston, five ships will offer a variety of options to explore this vibrant region.

Princess’ two newest ships, Regal Princess and Royal Princess, will be returning to the sunny and picturesque Caribbean for the 2015-16 season. Regal Princess will offer both seven-day Eastern and Western Caribbean voyages that can be combined for a longer cruise vacation aboard our newest vessel in the Caribbean, while Royal Princess will sail on the line’s most popular Caribbean itineraries – the 10-day Southern Caribbean Medley and 10-day Eastern Caribbean Voyager – which can also be linked for a longer 20-day cruise.

Emerald Princess will sail on a series of four-, five- and seven- day Eastern and Western Caribbean voyages, which guests can combine to customize and create a longer Caribbean cruise, in addition to two special eight-day holiday cruises visiting either the Eastern or Southern Caribbean. Ocean Princess will offer the unique small ship cruising experience on a special 14-day holiday Caribbean cruise to exclusive ports less-frequented by larger vessels including Virgin Gorda, Tobago and St. Vincent.

Caribbean Princess will return to Houston for voyages to the Western Caribbean.

Panama Canal Cruises
Coral Princess and Island Princess will once again bring guests through the iconic Panama Canal. Guests can choose from either a 10-day voyage sailing roundtrip from Ft. Lauderdale including partial transit of the canals, or a longer 15-day voyage between Ft. Lauderdale and Los Angeles to experience the full-transit of this wonder of engineering.

Smaller ships, Pacific Princess and Ocean Princess will also join the Panama Canal line-up on several departures of a 17-day itinerary – offering a choice of ship size to see the Canal.

West Coast Cruises – Hawaii, Mexico & Coastals
On the opposite coast, four ships will be deployed from three homeports – Los Angeles, San Francisco and Vancouver – to the tropical waters of Hawaii, Mexico and along the charming California coast.

A nostalgic 50th Anniversary cruise to Mexico, where the line first sailed, will take place on Pacific Princess departing December 3, 2015 – the same day Princess Patricia departed on its first-ever cruise in 1965. The itinerary will include a blend of some ports of call from the maiden itinerary such as an overnight call in Puerto Vallarta, as well as Mazatlán and Manzanillo, with some of our newer destinations including La Paz and Loreto located along the Baja Peninsula.

Crown Princess and Ruby Princess will become the largest sister ships to sail from the West Coast this season offering a variety of destination options including Mexico, Hawaii, and California Coastal voyages sailing from Los Angeles. Grand Princess will return to San Francisco for voyages to Mexico, Hawaii and cruises along the West Coast. Star Princess will also offer voyages to Hawaii roundtrip from Vancouver during the spring and fall, in addition to cruises sailing along the West Coast.

Crown Princess will offer a fall departure of the increasingly popular 28-day Hawaii, Tahiti and South Pacific itinerary which allows west coast guests to visit the idyllic South Pacific islands of French Polynesia and Samoa without a flight.

Three- and four- day Getaway voyages will return on three different ships with departures on Crown Princess and Ruby Princess, in addition to fall departures on Star Princess. Passengers will also have the option of an all-new five-day Getaway itinerary, offered in November and December on Star Princess that includes an overnight in Cabo San Lucas allowing guests more time to explore the port’s pristine waters or relax on one of the white-sand beaches.

Posted: April 23rd, 2014 under Cruise Ship News.
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Regal Princess Completes Successful Sea Trials

Written by: Cruise News

April 23, 2014 – Regal Princess has accomplished another major milestone in preparation for her May 20 debut, with the completion of her sea trials. The new cruise ship set out to sea from her construction dock at the Fincantieri shipyard in Monfalcone, Italy, and was put through her paces with a series of maneuvers to test her propulsion, steering and navigational equipment. After a successful five days of trials, the ship is now back in the shipyard for further exterior and interior finishing. Regal Princess will be ready for her maiden voyage from Venice, a seven-day Mediterranean cruise to Athens including stops in Corfu, Mykonos and an overnight call in Istanbul.

Throughout the summer, the new ship will sail on Princess’ signature Grand Mediterranean cruises, with two itinerary choices.

Regal Princess, a sister ship to Royal Princess, will offer guests a variety of enticing features, including a soaring atrium, the social hub of the ship; a dramatic over-water SeaWalk, a top-deck glass-bottomed walkway extending more than 28 feet beyond the edge of the vessel; plush private poolside cabanas; the Princess Live! television studio; a dedicated pastry shop; a special Chef’s Table Lumiere, a private dining experience that surrounds diners in a curtain of light; and balconies on all outside staterooms.

For photos from Regal Princess’ sea trials, visit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/princesscruises/sets/72157644196526396/

Posted: April 23rd, 2014 under Cruise Ship News.
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NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE STIRS UP SUMMER WITH DESTINATION THEMED, HANDCRAFTED COCKTAILS

Written by: Cruise News

April 23, 2014 – Norwegian Cruise Line is elevating the cruise ship cocktail and enhancing guests’ travel experience with an exciting new destination-based handcrafted summer beverage program. The line announced today that they have partnered with James Beard Award-nominated mixologist Gabriel Orta of Miami-based Bar Lab Cocktails to create five seasonal beverage menus focusing on local ingredients that celebrate popular summer destinations including Bermuda, the Caribbean, Hawaii, Alaska and Europe.

In line with the classic cocktail culture resurgence seen in today’s land-based bars and restaurants, the onboard regional menus each feature four specialty cocktails created with traditional spirits and flavors relevant to the ships’ itineraries.

Recognized for their ingenious approach to the industry, the avant-garde cocktail programs created by Bar Lab have been awarded numerous professional honors and featured in publications worldwide. The summer menus designed by Bar Lab along with the Norwegian beverage development team feature avant-garde cocktails made with fresh juices, aromatic herbs and complementary local spirits. The new cocktails offer guests an advanced taste of the ship’s ports of call and further immerse them in the local culture.

When sailing to Bermuda on Norwegian Breakaway or Norwegian Dawn, guests can enjoy a traditional Dark & Stormy, with Bermuda’s own Gosling’s Rum and ginger beer, or sample a new take on a Mai Tai, featuring house-made almond syrup, Gosling’s Rum and dusted with powdered cinnamon. Cruisers in the Caribbean sailing onboard Norwegian Getaway or Norwegian Sky can try a Spicy Pina Punch, with Bacardi Superior Rum and chipotle pineapple syrup, or a unique Island Colada, featuring coconut cream, peach puree and Bacardi Dark rum.
dave albums press images picture65 norwegian summer cocktails NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE STIRS UP SUMMER WITH DESTINATION THEMED, HANDCRAFTED COCKTAILS
Distinct beverages on the Europe menu, which is served on Norwegian Epic, Norwegian Jade, Norwegian Spirit and Norwegian Star, highlight Aperol, Campari, Hennessey and Grand Marnier, while on Pride of America Hawaii cocktails include Whaler’s Dark rum and even Kona beer. Those guests experiencing an Alaskan cruise on Norwegian Pearl, Norwegian Jewel or Norwegian Sun can warm up after exploring a glacier with a Smoky Hot Toddy, combining crème de cacoa, orange peel, cloves, bitters and Grant’s scotch or a Northwest Java Jump with Patron XO Café, Chai tea and cream.

Guests sailing with Norwegian this summer can enjoy these specialty cocktails from July 1 – September 15. Norwegian will debut new menus featuring holiday cocktails in early November.

Posted: April 23rd, 2014 under Cruise Ship News.
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Princess Cruises Will Celebrate 50th Anniversary with Nostalgic Sailing to Mexico

Written by: Cruise News

April 22, 2014 – To cap a year of 50th anniversary activities, Princess Cruises, which celebrates the five decade mark in 2015, has created a special Mexico itinerary departing on December 3, 2015 – exactly 50 years to the day that the line’s original ship, Princess Patricia, set sail on the company’s very first cruise in 1965.

Offered on the intimate Pacific Princess, next year’s unique sailing is the same length as the company’s first cruise – 14 days – and will include a blend of ports from the maiden itinerary such as Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlán and Manzanillo, with some newer destinations such as La Paz and Loreto.

Guests on the cruise will be treated to an array of activities and entertainment commemorating half a century of cruising by the famous line, and will also be joined by some surprise guests.

This anniversary sailing on Pacific Princess, which carries 670 guests, is available for sale on May 13 and fares start at $1,699 per person, double occupancy.

“This nostalgic cruise to Mexico will be the perfect finale to what’s sure to be a special 50th anniversary year for Princess,” said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises president. “For this significant milestone we couldn’t resist recreating, with some new touches, the very first cruise our company operated. And because the name Pacific Princess is so integral to our company’s history, we wanted to offer the cruise aboard the current ship with this iconic name.”

One of the best-known names in cruising, Princess Cruises first set sail in 1965 with a single ship cruising to Mexico. Nearly 50 years later, the line has grown to become the third largest cruise line in the world and a recognized leader in taking travelers to some of the most fascinating places around the globe.

Posted: April 22nd, 2014 under Cruise Ship News.
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HOLLAND AMERICA LINE LAUNCHES ‘DIVE-IN AT THE TERRACE GRILL’ FEATURING GOURMET BURGERS AND HOT DOGS

Written by: Cruise News

April 21, 2014 — Holland America Line is enhancing the Terrace Grill on its 15 premium ships and rebranding the popular lunch spot as “Dive-In at the Terrace Grill.” The outdoor bistro-style grill area by the ships’ Lido pool will feature new signature burgers, hot dogs and fries.

The first ships to open the new gourmet grill were ms Eurodam, ms Amsterdam and ms Maasdam. The remaining ships in the fleet will be opening Dive-In at the Terrace Grill throughout summer 2014. The areas will be decorated with new Dive-In signage and décor.

“We’re always listening to our guests and travel partners for ideas to evolve the dining experience on our ships with new concepts, and the Dive-In is an exciting enhancement to our culinary offerings,” said Richard Meadows, executive vice president of sales, marketing and guest programs for Holland America Line. “For a casual meal, Dive-In offers a delicious choice with a gourmet twist.”

All of the signature burgers are hand-formed, freshly made beef patties featuring Holland America Line’s secret Dive-In Sauce, chop-chop lettuce and sliced tomato on a toasted brioche bun in addition to other accoutrements. Guests can choose from burgers such as The Gainer, which is served with a mound of crispy frizzled onions; The Cannonball with Gouda cheese, applewood smoked bacon and sweet caramelized onions; and The High-Dive with cheddar cheese. Guests in the mood for chicken can choose The Back Flip chicken breast burger topped with guacamole and all the burger dressings, while vegetarians can sample The Freestyle, a vegetarian burger with grilled portabella mushroom topped with melting Gouda and cheddar cheeses, avocado and Dive-In sauce.

“I applaud the creativity and skills of our culinary team to come up with a tasty menu that could be a stand-alone bistro grill on land,” said Michael Smith, senior vice president, marine hotel operations for Holland America Line. “It’s been a fantastic hit with our guests so far and we know it will continue to be very popular.”

Signature hot dogs feature Nathan’s Famous all beef dogs, all served with Dive-In Sauce in a poppy-seed bun. The Dive-In Dog is topped with American-style mustard and a mound of crispy frizzled onions; The Dog Paddle is topped with sauerkraut, crispy bacon bits and German mustard, while The Dunkin’ Dog is topped with melty cheese sauce, pickled jalapenos and chopped red onions.

No hamburger or hot dog would be complete without Dive-In French Fries, and guests can order them three ways: traditional, topped with Dive-In Sauce or smothered in melty cheese sauce.

The existing Taco Bar will continue to be available with the Dive-In at the Terrace Grill. Guests make their own taco with handmade tortillas or hard taco shells and a selection of popular condiments and fillings including chicken, beef and pork.

Posted: April 21st, 2014 under Cruise Ship News.
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Princess Cruises Unveils 2015 Japan Cruise Program

Written by: Cruise News

April 21, 2014 – Demonstrating a continuing commitment to developing the Japan cruise market, Carnival Corporation & plc has announced the 2015 Japan cruise program for Princess Cruises which features Diamond Princess returning for the line’s third season, and introduces new cruises as short as three nights to appeal for those local travelers seeking a quick getaway.

Beginning next April, the Japanese-built Diamond Princess will once again offer an exciting season sailing from the two home ports of Tokyo (Yokohama) and Kobe. During the four-month summer season the ship will offer 20 departures on a mix of itineraries visiting more than 20 destinations in Japan, Korea, Taiwan and Russia. The mix of itineraries is designed to have broad appeal, with cruises as short as three nights and up to 17 nights for guests seeking a more in-depth experience in Japan.

“We are very pleased to bring Diamond Princess back to Japan again next summer, this time with a broader variety of itineraries and cruise lengths offering guests a diverse choice of experiences and destinations,” said Jan Swartz, president of Princess Cruises. “In addition to offering local consumers a shorter cruise experience, our longer sailings will offer an enriching and convenient way to explore many of Japan’s most fascinating port cities.”

Swartz added that Sun Princess will not be returning to Japan next summer as it will instead be deployed to Australia where it has long been a popular ship based in the region. “Moving Sun Princess to Australia in 2015 doesn’t diminish our enthusiasm for the Japan cruise market. As demand for cruising grows further in Japan, we will review the opportunity to add additional capacity in the future.”

Diamond Princess will begin the 2015 season on April 29 in Yokohama with an eight-night Golden Week itinerary and a nine-night Taiwan & Korea sailing. The ship will then position to Kobe for a series of three cruises of Princess’ popular eight-night Ryukyu Islands & Taiwan voyages that include calls to Okinawa, Hualien, Kaohsiung and Taipei (Keelung). New for 2015 from Kobe is a 10-night Hokkaido cruise that includes appealing northern destinations of Aomori, Hakodate, Otaru and Abashiri.

Diamond Princess will return to Yokohama to spend the balance of the summer sailing north to the island of Hokkaido or around Japan, visiting culturally rich destinations such as Maizuru (for Kyoto), Nagasaki and Aomori. A special feature of the Hokkaido voyages is the late evening departure from Hakodate, which is famous for the nighttime view from the top of Mt. Hakodate, as well as the morning fish market.

Also new for the 2015 season, which runs through mid-September, are three-, four-, five- and seven-night itineraries designed to appeal to those with limited vacation time. Throughout the summer Diamond Princess will sail on a four-night Korea Getaway roundtrip from Kobe, plus a five-night Korea & Japan Getaway roundtrip from Tokyo (Yokohama) and a five-night Korea & Japan Getaway that positions between the two homeports. In August, the ship will sail on a week-long itinerary roundtrip from Yokohama which can be segmented into a three-night Korea Getaway disembarking in Hakata, or a four-night Korea & Japan itinerary embarking in Hakata.

The experience onboard Diamond Princess in Japan will substantially be the same as that offered by Princess Cruises around the world, providing an impressive array of dining and entertainment options in addition to the line’s signature innovations such as its popular Movies Under the Stars poolside theater and The Sanctuary, an exclusive top-deck retreat. However as done during the first two Japan seasons, some changes and enhancements will be made to appeal to the local market. The just-completed refurbishment of Diamond Princess added Izumi Japanese bath – the largest of its kind at sea – as well as a Kai Sushi restaurant. Photos of Diamond Princess post drydock can be found here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/princesscruises/sets/72157643606751373/

Dining room menus will offer international Princess cuisine, while additional offerings will cater to Japanese tastes, and a la carte sushi bar will be opened. Other amenities such as the spa treatments will also be tailored to Japanese preferences, and onboard collateral items and stateroom information will be translated into Japanese.

An extensive array of shore excursions will be available to complement the itineraries including opportunities to visit the UNESCO World Heritage sites.

Diamond Princess was built by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in Nagasaki, Japan – the first of two Princess ships built in Japan.

The 2015 Japan cruise program opens for sale April 30.

Posted: April 21st, 2014 under Cruise Ship News.
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Carnival Cruise Lines Introduces “Camp Ocean” Children’s Program

Written by: Cruise News

April 18, 2014 – Carnival Cruise Lines, the leader in family cruising, today unveiled Camp Ocean – an exciting, new marine-themed children’s program coming to its fleet of 24 “Fun Ships.” Set to debut on Carnival Freedom on May 24, the expansive new program will immerse children ages 2-11 in the wonders of the sea through fun, engaging and educational experiences. More than 200 new ocean-inspired activities will range from educational games such as Sea Creature Discovery, Marine Life Trivia, Under the Sea Mad Libs and Ocean Artifacts Memory Tray to creative arts opportunities such as Design Your Own Aquarium, Make Your Own Sailboat, Sea Salt Art, and Create a Penguin from Oreos.

Camp Ocean, which will replace the line’s existing Camp Carnival program, will welcome youngsters in with light blue and white underwater colored spaces and friendly, experienced staff. Three age-related categories will each have their own identity: children ages 2-5 will be dubbed “Penguins,” with those ages 6-8 called “Sting Rays” while 9-11 year olds will be “Sharks.”

Distinctive areas and activities have been custom-created for each of the new age designations – from miniature play igloos for the Penguins to interactive gaming stations for the Sharks. On Carnival Freedom, which begins a multi-million dollar refurbishment tomorrow, and Carnival Vista, which debuts in 2016, a new purpose-built Camp Ocean play area will include Party Reef, a common shared space that brings each of the groups together, as well as Creative Cove, a breakout room for arts and crafts activities.

“While our current children’s program consistently gets very high marks, we’ve challenged ourselves to exceed expectations with a truly dynamic and diverse program for our youngest guests,” said Mark Tamis, Carnival’s senior vice president of guest operations. “With our new highly tailored age groupings and themed activities connected to the oceans and their fascinating underwater habitats, we’re excited to invite kids to Camp Ocean to have an extra special and memorable Carnival vacation experience.”

Camp Ocean also provides travel agents with an exceptional family-friendly feature to market to their clients with children, he noted.

Introduction of Carnival Play Panel
In developing the new Camp Ocean program, the company convened a Carnival Play Panel comprised of experts in child education, media and play to develop and curate the more than 200 new activities to resonate with today’s children and to continually review and guide updates to the children’s programming.

The panel includes:

· Toni Linder, professor emeritus at the University of Denver who consults on child development and education for young children both nationally and internationally and also serves as graduate coordinator at the College of Education at the University of Denver specializing in child engagement and education.

· George Arthur Bloom, who has more than 20 years of experience in children’s media and programming including writing for longtime favorites such as Magic School Bus, My Little Pony and the original Transformers TV series.

· Matt Brown, recognized expert in play who has been vice president of LeapFrog and senior vice president of Scholastic, is an advisor for PBS Kids, and currently works as chief gaming officer of Conteneo.

· Chris Byrne, a 30-plus-year veteran of the toy industry and current partner in aNb Media LLC who also serves as content director for TTPM.com.

· April Norris, loyal Carnival Cruise Lines guest and mother of two who serves as a trusted advisor to the brand.

The new Camp Ocean activities span across 11 key categories of play, including the core themes of active play, games, free play, arts and crafts and digital, coupled with additional categories such as role play, music, party time, science and discovery, social and food fun, all designed to find the ideal combination of activities catering to children’s varied interests.

New Badge Challenge

Carnival will also introduce a Badge Challenge as part of Camp Ocean, which will provide the opportunity for kids to earn and collect badges as a special memento of their cruise. Badge challenges will include a variety of unique activities that provide an original way for kids to learn about their vessel, experience onboard adventures and gain a sense of accomplishment. After completing tasks which may include trying a new food, making an aquatic towel animal or riding the water slide, children will collect corresponding Camp Ocean badges.

Continued Leader in Family Cruising
The new Camp Ocean program builds upon Carnival’s leadership position in family cruising with more than 700,000 kids expected to sail on Carnival ships in 2014. Another recently announced enhancement to the line’s children’s programming is a partnership with Dr. Seuss Enterprises to introduce the family-focused Seuss at Sea, with youth, family, dining and entertainment experiences inspired by the amazing world and words of Dr. Seuss.

Carnival’s popular programs for tweens and teens, Circle C (for 12-14 year olds) and Club O2 (for 15-17 year olds) will continue across the fleet.

Rollout of Camp Ocean will begin aboard Carnival Freedom in May 2014 following a major refurbishment which will also include the line’s first Dr. Seuss Bookville interactive reading venue. Camp Ocean will be introduced on Carnival Magic, Carnival Breeze and Carnival Triumph later this year with the balance of the fleet implemented by 2016, including Carnival Vista which is set to debut in early 2016.

Posted: April 18th, 2014 under Cruise Ship News.
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NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE EXPANDS EAST COAST MOTOR COACH PROGRAM

Written by: Cruise News

April 16, 2014 – Norwegian Cruise Line today announced that the line has expanded their motor coach program throughout the eastern United States, to offer additional ground transportation routes to the Manhattan Cruise Terminal from six new Mid-Atlantic and New England departure cities. The additional transportation options also provide a more convenient schedule for guests on existing routes.

In partnership with Academy Bus, more guests of Norwegian Breakaway and Norwegian Gem will now be able to purchase transfers right to the Manhattan Cruise Terminal, without having to worry about driving into the city or finding and paying for parking. These new routes are in addition to the line’s current program with Yankee Trails World Travel.

Beginning May 3, guests from Rhode Island, Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Hampshire can enjoy direct motor coach service from 11 New England departure cities, including Warwick, RI; New London, CT; New Haven, CT; Bridgeport, CT; Braintree, MA; Worcester, MA; Springfield, MA; Hartford, CT; Woburn, MA; Framingham, MA and new departure city, Salem, NH. As of May 31, guests will be able to purchase motor coach service direct to the port from the following five new Mid-Atlantic departure cities: Arlington, VA; Baltimore, MD; Wilmington, DE; Philadelphia, PA; and East Brunswick, NJ. The transfers are offered for $110 roundtrip per adult and $75 per child.

Guests who select Norwegian’s expanded motor coach service will also be able to take advantage of more convenient departure and return times. Transfers will now depart for the Cruise Terminal one to two hours later than previous schedules and returning transfers will depart at 10 am, saving up to two hours.

Cruisers can set sail from the Big Apple to Bermuda on board Norwegian Breakaway, the ship that brings the best of NYC to Sea. Norwegian Breakaway will sail seven-day cruises to Bermuda, from May 4 through September 28, 2014, offering guests three full days to explore in King’s Wharf, Bermuda. Fares start at $599*.

Vacationers looking to cruise from NYC to the Bahamas & Florida can set sail on board Norwegian Gem on a seven-day itinerary from May 3, 2014 through September 6, 2014, with ports of call including Orlando & Beaches (Port Canaveral); Great Stirrup Cay, Bahamas; and Nassau, Bahamas. Fares start at $549*.

Posted: April 17th, 2014 under Cruise Ship News.
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CARNIVAL SUNSHINE TO INAUGURATE YEAR-ROUND SERVICE FROM PORT CANAVERAL APRIL 17

Written by: Cruise News

April 17, 2014 — Port Canaveral’s newest ship, the totally transformed Carnival Sunshine, will depart on its inaugural voyage from the Space Coast when it sails on a special two-day cruise to The Bahamas later today.
Carnival Sunshine will then kick off a year-round schedule of five- to eight-day voyages visiting spectacular destinations throughout the Caribbean, Bahamas and Florida beginning April 19.

Carnival Sunshine is the first ship to feature all of the line’s fantastic Fun Ship 2.0 bar, dining and entertainment innovations which were added during a massive 75-day, $155 million makeover that was the most comprehensive in the company’s history.
Carnival Sunshine continues the line’s nearly 25-year relationship with Port Canaveral while further bolstering its leadership position at the port. Including Carnival Sunshine, along with Carnival Sensation and a third year-round ship launching service next month, Carnival will carry a record 600,000 passengers annually from Port Canaveral – more than any cruise operator. Carnival’s three Port Canaveral-based ships will operate 200 three- to eight-day voyages a year visiting 18 tropical destinations throughout the Caribbean, Bahamas and Florida.

“Not only does Carnival Sunshine bring all of our Fun Ship 2.0 innovations to the Space Coast, it offers a lineup of cruises featuring the greatest diversity of destinations and cruise lengths ever offered from Port Canaveral,” said Gerry Cahill, Carnival’s president and CEO. “Central Florida is one of our fastest-growing markets and our continued growth at Port Canaveral would not be possible without the tremendous support from the Canaveral Port Authority, numerous community leaders and many highly valued travel agent partners,” he added.

“Port Canaveral is proud to homeport the latest innovative ship from Carnival Cruise Lines and we look forward to the continuation of this long-time successful partnership,” said Port Canaveral CEO John E. Walsh. “Carnival Sunshine will provide our community with expanded business opportunities and more vacation choices for both our residents and visitors.”

Exciting On-Board Innovations

Carnival Sunshine offers an entirely new seagoing vacation experience from Port Canaveral, with on-board features and facilities catering to guests of all ages and interests.

These include a tantalizing variety of dining options – from casual favorites like Guy’s Burger Joint, developed in partnership with Food Network star Guy Fieri; the Cucina del Capitano family-style Italian eatery and Ji Ji Asian Kitchen to Fahrenheit 555, a reservations-only steakhouse serving gourmet cuisine in an intimate and elegant setting. Guests can also check out the full-service Bonsai Sushi, the 24-hour Pizzeria del Capitano, Lido Marketplace offering an array of international cuisines and only-on-Sunshine choices like ShakeSpot and JavaBlue Café.

And while the youngsters are enjoying fun, supervised activities and play areas designed for three age groups, grown-ups can relax and get some “me” time at Serenity, a stunning three-level adults-only retreat featuring its own pool, a waterfall, oversized umbrellas and comfortable chaise lounges.

Other popular features include the poolside RedFrog Rum Bar, BlueIguana Tequila Bar and Blue Iguana Cantina, along with top-deck attractions such as WaterWorks, featuring a 334-foot-long Twister water slide – the longest in the fleet – and SportSquare, an outdoor recreation area highlighted by a suspended ropes course offering breathtaking views of the sea 150 feet below.

Entertainment offerings include the high-energy Playlist Productions revues; the family-friendly Hasbro, The Game Show, with larger-than-life adaptations of the brand’s popular games; and hilarious performances at the Punchliner Comedy Club presented by George Lopez, a partnership with the popular comedian and TV personality offering dozens of adult-oriented and all-ages comedy shows each voyage.

Port-Intensive Caribbean Itineraries
Carnival Sunshine will operate three different five-day eastern Caribbean sailings departing Sundays and featuring calls at Key West, Nassau, and Freeport; Nassau and Grand Turk; or Nassau, Half Moon Cay and Freeport.

Port-intensive seven-day cruises depart Saturdays to the eastern Caribbean and call at Nassau, St. Thomas, San Juan and Grand Turk, while week-long western Caribbean trips depart Saturdays and call at Cozumel, Belize, Mahogany Bay (Isla Roatan); and Costa Maya.

Two different eight-day eastern Caribbean cruises depart Fridays or Saturdays, and call at Grand Turk, San Juan, St. Thomas and St. Maarten; or Grand Turk, St. Thomas, Tortola and St. Maarten. Eight-day southern Caribbean sailings depart Fridays or Saturdays and include Curaçao, Aruba and Grand Turk.

Posted: April 17th, 2014 under Cruise Ship News.
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ROYAL CARIBBEAN ANNOUNCES 2015-16 DEPLOYMENTS FOR NEW YORK AND GALVESTON

Written by: Cruise News

April 17, 2014 – Royal Caribbean International today announced its 2015-16 year-round sailings from the New York-metropolitan area and Galveston, Texas, and seasonal sailings from Tampa and Fort Lauderdale. Liberty of the Seas will homeport at Cape Liberty Cruise Port in Bayonne, N.J. for summer 2015 and offer vacationers cruises from the New York-metropolitan area to Bermuda, the Caribbean, and Canada and New England. Simultaneously, Navigator of the Seas will continue to sail seven-night Western Caribbean cruises throughout summer 2015 and complete two consecutive years of homeporting at Galveston.

In winter 2015-16, Anthem of the Seas will arrive at Cape Liberty for its first season in North America – after finishing its inaugural season in Southampton, U.K. – and offer vacationers unforgettable Quantum-class experiences to the Bahamas and throughout the Caribbean. At the same time, Liberty of the Seas will take over weekly Caribbean sailings from Galveston, offering Texas vacationers a newer and larger ship, while Navigator of the Seas will sail six- and eight-night Caribbean itineraries from Fort Lauderdale. Furthermore, Brilliance of the Seas and Vision of the Seas will return to Tampa in winter 2015-16 to offer a variety of Caribbean itineraries that all combine to provide extensive choices for exciting Royal Caribbean cruise vacations throughout 2015 to 2016.

Liberty of the Seas, Navigator of the Seas, Brilliance of the Seas, and Vision of the Seas’ 2015-16 cruise seasons are now open for booking. Crown & Anchor Society loyalty members have the exclusive privilege to book Anthem of the Seas’ winter 2015-16 season starting April 25, 2014, in advance of the general opening to the public on April 29.

The Most Advanced Cruise Vacations from New York

Throughout the 2015 summer and autumn seasons, Liberty of the Seas will homeport at Cape Liberty and offer the best family cruise vacation option in the region. The Freedom-class ship will be the cruise line’s newest and largest ship to offer cruises to Bermuda from the New York-metropolitan area. Liberty of the Seas will alternate a five-night, roundtrip Bermuda itinerary with a nine-night Caribbean itinerary in the summer, and then with a nine-night New England and Canada itinerary throughout the autumn season.

For its winter 2015-16 season, Anthem of the Seas will set sail on October 27 for an eight-night Ocean Voyage from Southampton to Cape Liberty and continue Quantum Class cruising for New York-area vacationers. The ship will sail a range of seven- to 12-night roundtrip itineraries and take guests to the Bahamas and throughout the Eastern, Western and Southern Caribbean. The 12-night Western Caribbean itinerary is brand new, featuring maiden calls for the Quantum Class at George Town, Grand Cayman; Falmouth, Jamaica; Costa Maya, Mexico; and Roatan, Honduras.

Year-round Caribbean Vacations from Galveston

The recently revitalized Navigator of the Seas will continue weekly sailings from Galveston until November 2015, when Liberty of the Seas repositions there to offer Texans a larger and more advanced cruise ship. Both ships will alternate a pair of seven-night roundtrip itineraries to the Western Caribbean.

Winter Caribbean Escapes from Florida

Completing two full years of homeporting in Galveston, Navigator of the Seas will reposition to Fort Lauderdale in November 2015 and sail six-night Eastern and eight-night Western Caribbean itineraries.

Finally, Brilliance of the Seas and Vision of the Seas will return to Tampa for their third and second consecutive winter seasons, respectively. Brilliance of the Seas will offer vacationers four- and five-night Western Caribbean itineraries, while Vision of the Seas will sail seven-, nine-, and 10-night itineraries throughout the Eastern, Western and Southern Caribbean.

Posted: April 17th, 2014 under Cruise Ship News.
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