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Ovation Of The Seas Features $4.5 Million Dollar -11,000 Piece – Art Collection

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April 11, 2016 – Royal Caribbean International’s Ovation of the Seas is setting sail from Southampton, U.K. this week on her 52-day Global Odyssey visiting exotic ports of call from the Mediterranean to the Far East and beyond. Guests onboard Ovation will experience these ports while enjoying an 11,000-piece, $4.5 million dollar art collection that has been inspired by the words of Confucius: “Wherever you go, go with all your heart.” The collection was curated by London-based Peter Millard and Partners and features contemporary art from artists from around the world.

33-Foot Panda and Cub Set Sail

One of the ultimate photo ops onboard Ovation of the Seas is “Mama and Baby,” a larger-than-life commission designed by a U.K.-based artist Jo Smith. Perched atop the SeaPlex on deck 15, the piece depicts a mother panda and her cub, reaching out to one another. Considered a symbol of good luck and a national treasure in Chinese culture, the peaceful creatures with the distinctive black and white coat were curated with Ovation’s primarily Chinese guests in mind, and intended to bestow peace and prosperity on all who interact with them. The pandas are also a playful nod to the cruise line’s newly announced partnership with World Wildlife Fund, which focuses on ensuring the long-term health of the oceans its ships sail upon.

Mama and Baby together weigh approximately six-and-a-half tons. Mama is 10 meters high, or approximately 33 feet, from the deck to the top of the sculpture, while Baby is approximately three meters, or ten feet tall.

Smart Art Includes First Moving Sculpture at Sea
“Sky Wave” was created by New York-based Hypersonic and Boston-based Plebian Design, and is the first ever kinetic moving sculpture at sea. The installation pivots and curves at different points to mirror the flow of both wind and water. Further inspiration was also taken from the ship’s movement, culminating in a piece that combines both maritime elements and engineering.

Each petal in Sky Wave is made of handcrafted fiberglass and varies in length to hone the flawless rolling sway. Located on deck 5 just in the Royal Esplanade, the eye-catching, carefully crafted art piece was commissioned specifically for Ovation.

Elevator Art Gets an New Look, Still Prime for Selfies
The elevator art on Quantum class is known for selfie-taking, and Ovation of the Seas is no exception. Ovation is elevating the selfie art game with all-new imagery from Chinese photographer Huainan Li’s series, “The World of the Senses.” The series features the futuristic faces of women accented in metallic hues and sporting glasses that reflect a variety of whimsical scenes.

The Red Thread
One of the most iconic art locales on Quantum-class ships is the rotunda, which connects mid-ship’s Jamie’s Italian and Vintages. Ovation guests can enjoy the work of Bieli Liu, a Chinese artist who played into the natural movement of the ship with an adaptation from her “Lure” series of installations. The sculpture was created to fit the rotunda location and represents an ancient Chinese legend depicting the red threads that connect Chinese children to their soulmates. A disc may be connected to another, as a pair; and a pair of disks may sprout from a single thread. The installation is designed to suspend from the ceiling forming a vibrant and energetic piece that responds to subtle air currents and movement as the red coils turn, and strands of thread become entangled.

Throughout the entire ship, guests will find curated art at every turn, all inspired by the exotic destinations Ovation will visit. Figures from artist Zheng Lu are located outside Two70. The sculpture – inspired by the artist’s father, a Chinese poet – weaves Chinese symbols together in a delicate fashion.

Heading into the Royal Theater, artist Dominic Harris engages show-goers with an interactive piece titled “Flutter Wall.” The 120-inch screen showcases butterflies on a black canvas that seemingly fly away as guests walk up for a closer view. A true surprise and delight experience akin to the additional installations that travelers can enjoy onboard. To learn more about the onboard art collection click here.

Posted: April 13th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Royal Caribbean Announces Caribbean, Bermuda, and Canada Itineraries for 2017-18

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Two ships to call Cape Liberty home for first time in summer 2017

April 12, 2016 – Royal Caribbean will offer expanded Caribbean itineraries from the Northeast in 2017, with Rhapsody of the Seas joining Anthem of the Seas in Cape Liberty, New Jersey. This will be the first time that two Royal Caribbean ships will be sailing from Cape Liberty.

Bermuda and More from the Northeast:

Rhapsody of the Seas will sail 7-night itineraries to the Bahamas throughout the summer, and Anthem of the Seas will sail to Bermuda in the summer and the Caribbean year-round on 5-, 7- and 9-night itineraries. Touting itineraries with overnights in King’s Wharf, Bermuda, guests onboard Anthem will have ample time to explore the world’s best SCUBA and snorkeling experiences and award-winning pink sand beaches. In the autumn months, Anthem of the Seas will sail 9-night voyages to New England and Canada.

For vacationers from the Mid-Atlantic region, Grandeur of the Seas, sailing from Baltimore all year, will continue offering a wide breadth of cruise experiences, from a 5-night itinerary calling on Bermuda to a 9-night voyage sailing to New England and Canada as the colors of fall foliage begin to show. Grandeur will also sail 12-night itineraries to premier Southern Caribbean destinations, including the U.S. Virgin Islands and St. Kitts and St. Maarten, as well as new 9-night itinerary to Nassau and CocoCay, Bahamas.

Southern Caribbean Hot Spots from Miami:

Navigator of the Seas will sail 5- and 9-night itineraries to Southern Caribbean destinations, such as Aruba and Bonaire.
Eastern and Western Caribbean from Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.:

Independence of the Seas will offer 4- and 5-night itineraries to Costa Maya and Cozumel Mexico; Falmouth, Jamaica and Labadee, Haiti.

Freedom of the Seas will offer 6- and 8-night Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries.

Serenade of the Seas will sail 10- and 11-night Caribbean itineraries including a new port of call in Ponce, Puerto Rico.
Key West and Beyond from Tampa, Fla.:

Brilliance of the Seas will join Rhapsody in Tampa for the winter, offering 4 and 5-night itineraries to Key West, Cozumel, Mexico and Grand Cayman.

Rhapsody of the Seas will relocate to Tampa for the winter season and sail 7-night Western Caribbean itineraries.
Exotic Island Escapes from Puerto Rico:

Jewel of the Seas will sail to romantic destinations such as St. Lucia, St. Kitts and Nevis, and Barbados on 7-night itineraries from San Juan.

Posted: April 12th, 2016 under Hot Cruise Deals.
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Chinese Star Fan Bingbing Named Godmother of Ovation Of The Seas

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April 12, 2016 – Royal Caribbean International today announced that internationally-acclaimed Chinese actress, Fan Bingbing, will be the Godmother for Ovation of the Seas. The announcement was made by Dr. Zinan Liu, President, Royal Caribbean International – China and North Asia Pacific, at a press conference at the Great Hall of People in Beijing.

Bingbing is the first Chinese celebrity selected to be the Godmother of an international cruise line and will officially name Ovation of the Seas at the ship’s inaugural ceremony in Tianjin, China on June 24, 2016.

Fan Bingbing


The second Quantum-class ship to be deployed in China, Ovation of the Seas, will sail its inaugural season from Tianjin after a one month mini season from Hong Kong before the ship repositions to its winter homeport in Australia in December 2016.

Posted: April 12th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Carnival & Houston Texans Announce Multi-Year Partnership

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Kicks Off with Special Mother’s Day Water Slide Race For Charity on Carnival Breeze With Texans Players DeAndre Hopkins and Brian Cushing

April 11, 2016 – Carnival Cruise Line, Texas’ largest cruise operator, today announced an exclusive multi-year partnership with the NFL’s Houston Texans, making Carnival the Official Cruise Line of the popular NFL franchise and expanding the line’s presence in the fast-growing Texas market.

To celebrate the partnership and the arrival of Galveston’s newest cruise ship, Carnival and the Houston Texans are hosting the “Mom’s Dash to the Splash” event aboard Carnival Breeze when it makes its Texas debut on Mother’s Day, May 8.

Houston Texans wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins and linebacker Brian Cushing will lead two teams of local Texas moms selected via an online contest in an exciting head-to-head water slide race for charity. The five-member teams will race to the finish on Carnival Breeze’s massive 312-foot-long Twister slide and exhilarating DrainPipe water slide attraction. Hopkins will be competing for the Houston Food Bank and Cushing for the Brian Cushing Foundation with the winning team earning $10,000 and the runner-up $5,000 for their respective charity.

“Mom’s Dash to the Splash” will kick off with a pre-race pep rally with appearances by the Houston Texans cheerleaders and the Deep Steel Thunder Band.

Moms who want be a part of #MomsDashSplash and get a chance to zip down Carnival Breeze’s heart-pounding water slides can enter a contest hosted on www.houstontexans.com/carnival that begins today and runs through April 25, 2016.

To enter, contestants simply tell their story in 250 words or less why their mom (or themselves) deserve the opportunity to be a member of Team Hopkins or Team Cushing. Eight lucky moms will be selected by a team of judges based on their entry’s creativity and originality. Contest winners will enjoy a delicious Mother’s Day brunch on board Carnival Breeze prior to the water slide race and a chance to win a free Carnival Breeze cruise for two. The winning race team will also receive an MVP Game Day package to an upcoming Houston Texans home game.

Posted: April 11th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Ovation Of The Seas Joins Royal Caribbean Fleet

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April 8, 2016 – Royal Caribbean officially took delivery of its 24th ship, Ovation of the Seas, in a ceremony held today in Bremerhaven, Germany. RCCL Chairman and CEO Richard D. Fain received the new ship from Meyer Werft Yard’s Managing Partner Bernard Meyer at the official handover ceremony. Ovation of the Seas is the third Quantum-class ship built at Meyer Werft.

“Ovation of the Seas is magnificent,” said Richard. “Our thanks to the Meyer Werft team for their ongoing partnership in designing and building awe-inspiring ships with us.”

RCCL CEO Richard Fain (left), Meyer Werft Managing Partner Bernard Meyer (right)


“It’s wonderful to welcome Ovation of the Seas to the Royal Caribbean family of ships,” said Michael Bayley, President and CEO, Royal Caribbean International. “We have once again introduced yet another one of the most technologically advanced cruise ships and the very first that has been built for the China market – a market we continue to demonstrate our commitment to expanding. Quantum Class has redefined the status quo, and we are excited for our guests in China and Australia to enjoy their extraordinary vacations onboard this stunner.”

Royal Caribbean’s Flag raised on Ovation Of The Seas


Ovation of the Seas will now sail to Southampton, U.K., where the ship will offer a series of short getaways before she sets sail on her 52-night “Global Odyssey” culminating in the arrival to her homeport in Tianjin, China. She will begin her first homeport sailing season in China from Tianjin in June 2016. Ovation, together with Quantum of the Seas, Mariner of the Seas, Voyager of the Seas and Legend of the Seas, will make up the largest fleet of any cruise line sailing in China.

Posted: April 8th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Royal Caribbean Introduces ‘Multi-Day Adventures’

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April 7, 2016 – Royal Caribbean International has unveiled the new Multi-Day Adventures program, which offers vacationers immersive two-day overnight explorations at select locations which are unique since they are done mid-cruise. The program will appeal to those vacationers who want more than the typical eight hours in a given port.

Options include the Caribbean, Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, with the Multi-Day Adventures being designed to take care of all the details for travelers. These excursions include fully guided tours of the destinations, dining, airfare (where applicable), hotel accommodations and transportation. Guests embarking on a Multi-Day Adventure will begin their experience as they depart the ship mid-cruise and then spend the extended time immersing in the local culture before rejoining their Royal Caribbean ship at the next port of call.

Some highlights of the Multi-Day Adventures include:

Tikal and Ceremonial Show – Beginning with a flight from Belize to Guatemala (or from Honduras to Guatemala), guests will discover the ancient Mayan capital on an overnight tour; embark on an expedition into the jungle to walk the ruins of the Mayan empire at Tikal National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site; and enjoy an authentic Mayan ceremonial experience, all before boarding their return flight to meet their Royal Caribbean ship.

Agrolida Region and Katakolon – This two-day excursion takes travelers back in time to Greece’s famous citadels. Culture-seekers will discover the Acropolis of Athens and the Ancient Mycenae site of Argolida; stay the evening in the Mediterranean nation’s first capital, Nafpolio; and travel to Ancient Olympia, where the first Ancient Olympic Games took place.

Bangkok – This experience in the “City of Angels” brings the sights, sounds and flavors of Thailand’s historic capital to vacationers’ fingertips. The two-day itinerary features adventures into the city’s canals and river tributaries via motor launch and inspiring visits to iconic monuments and sites including the Wat Traimit, also known as the “Temple of the Golden Buddha”, the Asiatique riverfront, Wat Arun – the “Temple of Dawn”, and the Grand Palace, adorned with murals, gilded spires and unique architectural design.

Posted: April 7th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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MSC Cruises Signs Letter of Intent for Up To Four New 200,000 Ton Ships

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Ships To Use LNG Fuel
April 6, 2016 – MSC Cruises just announced that it has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with STX France for the construction of up to four new LNG-powered cruise ships that will be more than 200,000 GRT. The four ships, the first one of which will be delivered in 2022, will be based on a new advanced next-generation prototype and will form what will be known as the “World Class” of MSC Cruises’ ships.

The announcement was made at the Élysée Palace in the presence of the President of the French Republic, François Hollande, as well as MSC Group’s Founder and Executive Chairman, Gianluigi Aponte, and STX France’s CEO Laurent Castaing.

MSC Cruises is the first cruise line brand to develop an investment plan of this length and magnitude, spanning more than ten years – from 2014 through 2026 – and introducing a total of up to eleven next-generation ships. The new orders would reflect an additional nearly $4.5 billion investment, which will bring the total value of the Company’s 10-plus years investment plan to nearly $10.2 billion.

The four ships provided under the LOI – two firm orders and two further options – will be delivered in 2022, 2024, 2025 and in 2026. They will feature a GRT in excess of 200,000 tonnes, more than 2,700 staterooms and approx. 5,400 lower berths occupancy capacity.

MSC Cruises’ investment plan includes orders with STX France for two Meraviglia and two further Meraviglia-Plus Class ships as well as orders with Fincantieri in Italy for up to three next-generation Seaside Class ships. Additionally, the plan encompassed the $227 million Renaissance Program, in which four ships out of 12 of the Company’s fleet were enhanced and enlarged at the Fincantieri shipyards.

Posted: April 6th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Azamara’s Spring Offer Includes Stateroom Upgrades and Cruise Credit through ChoiceAir

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April 5, 2016 – Azamara Club Cruises, our favorite upscale cruise line, is offering some nice incentives on 2016 and 2017 voyages, but you need to act now because the deal ends on May 31.

The Azamara Spring Offer Includes:

·ChoiceAir Credit: By booking air travel using ChoiceAir, receive $500 per person (up to $1,000 per stateroom) cruise fare savings for each voyage booked

·Stateroom Upgrade: Guests will be upgraded from a Club Interior to Club Oceanview cabin, or from a Club Oceanview to Club Veranda cabin ($1,000 value)

With 21 sailings to choose from this year, the line’s destination-immersive programs bring guests authentic and unique experiences on each excursion.

Highlights include:

·Mediterranean Jewels: Discover the UNESCO World Heritage villages of Cinque Terre, the gorgeous Amalfi Coast and the renaissance art and architecture in Florence, to the Vatican treasures in Rome and more.

·Australia to Asia: Enjoy scenic sailing, snorkeling and swimming along the Great Barrier Reef, attractions such as the tropical Daintree Rainforest, the Kuranda Scenic Railway, wildlife on Magnetic Island, outback towns, and lively port towns.

·Temples and Dragons: With an overnight on Semarang, check out the awe-inspiring Borobudur Temple Compounds, Prambanan (considered the world’s most beautiful Hindu temple), and Sangiran Early Man Site.

·New Orleans to the West Indies: Laissez les bon temps roulez in the historic core of the city, featuring renowned sights such as the French Quarter, Faubourg Marigny, Royal Street, Warehouse and Arts District, Magazine Street, and the Garden District. Choose from hundreds of restaurants and savor local specialties like gumbo, jumbalaya, and crawfish étouffée.

·The Spice Route: Explore the colorful shop-houses of George Town, Phuket’s tropical jungles and white beaches, and Sri Lanka’s World Heritage monasteries, cave temples and rainforests.

For more information as well as full list of applicable voyages visit www.azamaraclubcruises.com/Spring2016

Posted: April 5th, 2016 under Hot Cruise Deals.
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Carnival Triumph Arrives in New Homeport of New Orleans

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ARRIVAL CELEBRATED WITH CHARITY EVENT ON BOARD BENEFITING FOUR LOCAL MUSIC ORGANIZATIONS

April 4, 2016 – Carnival Triumph is now sailing from New Orleans and the cruise line and the Port of New Orleans today hosted an entertaining charity event with representatives from four local music organizations competing for $35,000 in donations to music charities.

Trumpeter/vocalist Shamarr Allen, competing on behalf of the Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong Jazz Camp; singer Robin Barnes, competing for the Tipitina’s Foundation; saxophonist Derek Douget, representing The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival and Foundation; and Rebirth Brass Band Drummer and Roots of Music Co-Founder Derrick Tabb participated in a series of hilarious “minute-to-win it” games with Tipitina’s Foundation taking home first prize of $15,000. The other groups split $20,000 in runner-up contributions toward the charities each were representing.

Winners of $15,000 Prize


Officials from Carnival Cruise Line, including Carnival Triumph Captain Alessandro Iemmi, Vice President of Commercial Port Operations Carlos Torres de Navarra and Vice President of Field Sales Mike Julius, along with Port of New Orleans President and CEO Gary LaGrange hosted a traditional maritime plaque exchange to commemorate the ship’s arrival at the port.

Carnival Triumph represents a 34 percent capacity increase on the line’s four- and five-day cruise program from New Orleans. Together with Carnival Dream, which operates year-round seven-day voyages, Carnival is expected to carry 450,000 passengers annually from the renovated Erato Street Terminal, representing the largest ever capacity commitment by a cruise line in New Orleans. Carnival is the only cruise line to operate year-round from New Orleans.

Carnival Triumph in the Big Easy


Carnival Triumph kicked off its New Orleans-based program today with a four-day cruise to Cozumel, Mexico. On this route, four-day “long weekend” cruises depart Thursdays and call at Cozumel while five-day sailings depart Mondays and Saturdays and visit Cozumel and Progreso. Carnival Triumph will also offer a special three-day cruise round-trip from New Orleans April 8-11, 2016.

Posted: April 4th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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New Video Series Highlights Carnival’s ‘Honor. Family. Fun.’ Military Family Program

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Carnival Awards Vaughn Family Free Cruise While Carrie Underwood Invites Them to Private Concert

APRIL 4, 2016 – Speaking as a military veteran as well as travel journalist, I can tell you that no cruise line does more to support military veterans and their families than Carnival Cruise Line. The company today released the first in a new video series featuring heartwarming meet-and-greet opportunities between seven-time GRAMMY-award winning country superstar Carrie Underwood and U.S. military families recognized through the Honor. Family. Fun. program benefiting Operation Homefront. The video can be viewed here.

In the first video, Underwood surprises the Vaughn family, whose patriarch Phillip served in the U.S. Army, at a pre-concert event in Washington, D.C, during her Storyteller Tour. Underwood thanked Vaughn for his service to our country and invited his family, which includes his wife Jung Sun and kids Tara and Jeremy, to her special private concert for military families pierside aboard Carnival Vista in New York on November 4, 2016. Carnival Cruise Director Butch Begovich then awarded the Vaughn family a free Carnival cruise.

“This initiative with Carrie and Operation Homefront has been extremely rewarding and this first video in the series featuring the Vaughn family shows how Honor. Family. Fun. is positively affecting so many people,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “The men and women of our military deserve our respect and admiration and we hope that Carnival’s small role in their lives will show them how much we value what they do for our country,” she added.

Carnival and Underwood have partnered on the year-long Honor. Family. Fun. initiative which is designed to support U.S. military families through Operation Homefront, the national nonprofit that builds strong, stable and secure military families.

The Vaughns are among dozens of military families recognized during 10 stops on Underwood’s Storyteller Tour. During the pre-concert events, military families, chosen in partnership with Operation Homefront, were treated to a personal meet-and-greet with Underwood who then invited them to her exclusive concert aboard Carnival Vista.

“Meeting the Vaughn family was touching for me and I hope they are as excited to come to my concert in New York as I was to surprise them with the invitation,” said Underwood. “This program has afforded me the opportunity to personally thank these soldiers for all that they do, and I am grateful to be a part of something so positive and rewarding.”

Driving the effort to raise funds for Operation Homefront, supporters will have the opportunity to donate by clicking on the “Donate Now” button on carnival.com/HonorFamilyFun. Commemorative dog tags also are also available for purchase at merchandise stands at all The Storyteller Tour stops as well as throughout Carnival’s fleet with all proceeds going to Operation Homefront.

Carnival has also launched a new shipboard military appreciation program. Each ship is hosting a special event onboard to recognize active and retired military personnel and their families and kicks off with a welcome video featuring Underwood. The country music superstar also will join the Carnival LIVE! roster of artists in early 2017, with further details to be announced at a later date.

Posted: April 4th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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