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Norwegian Cruise Line Goes Big on Luxury and Family Amenities for Great Stirrup Cay

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Extensive upgrades include 1,000 foot-long zip line; expanded dining options; and an exclusive access retreat with air-conditioned villas to open by Summer 2017


June 2, 2016 –
Norwegian Cruise Line has revealed details of the new experience that awaits guests at the company’s 250-acre private island, Great Stirrup Cay, Bahamas. And let me say, they are going all out on these improvements.

As a part of Norwegian’s $400 million investment program called The Norwegian Edge™, the cruise line is revolutionizing the destination now through summer 2017 to provide new luxurious amenities, new adventure activities, enhanced and expanded dining options that, together, will present an upgraded atmosphere for guests visiting the island.

Island Experiences

Great Stirrup Cay’s 10 acre beach will soon feature a half mile long oceanside boardwalk that will span the length of the shore with more than 100,000 square feet of pathway, offering easy access to the beaches, as well as a new shaded areas with benches. Just adjacent to the beach, guests can visit a new half-acre entertainment and activity complex, featuring a stage for live music, games and entertainers; basketball and volleyball courts, complete with bleachers; ping-pong tables; and a shaded picnic area.

An air-conditioned reception area will serve as the central hub for family-fun where guests can plan their day, reserve activities, rent board games and have access to expansive changing rooms.

A new 1,000 foot zip line course will provide a bird’s eye view of the island and the sea, and will have two parallel lines.

Dining

All dining and bar venues will be updated island-wide, adding new resort-style decking, shaded areas, high-top seating at all bars and family-style seating. This will add 50 percent more seating capacity at all dining outlets.

A new complimentary taco bar, Abaco Taco, will be added near the island’s entertainment hub, where guests can create their own favorite tacos.

The island’s 8,500-square foot buffet will be redesigned to provide faster and more efficient service for guests, and the deck surrounding the buffet will be expanded so guests can enjoy their lunch at new seating areas.

The center of the island will feature a shaded lounge area with new furniture and bar service.

Building on the brand’s partnership with Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville, Great Stirrup Cay will also feature a LandShark Bar & Grill, offering casual dining and drinks. Menu items will be available à la carte.

Exclusive Lagoon Retreat

Beginning in Summer 2017, a private area of Great Stirrup Cay will feature a secluded beach; oceanview restaurant; Mandara Spa; and 22 air-conditioned private villas available for reservations, ranging in size from studios to two-bedrooms.

The lagoon will be available on a complimentary basis to The Haven and Suite guests, along with guests who purchase an on-island Mandara Spa service. In addition, a limited amount of passes to the Lagoon will available for purchase on each sailing.

The lagoon will feature a floating swim up bar, a partitioned family beach area along with grassy areas for play, swing sets, and picnic tables. Guests can also reserve a private room for functions with up to 75 guests, with food and beverage service available.

The lagoon’s Mandara Spa will have four treatment rooms offering spa services.

Guests who purchase a reservation for one of Great Stirrup Cay’s beach villas will get a full lux experience from ship to shore, as they will be whisked away in an air-conditioned shuttle from the tender marina to the lagoon reception area.

Studio villas feature an outdoor terrace, private bathroom and living/dining area, and can accommodate two to four guests.

One bedroom villas accommodate four to six guests and feature a bedroom, private bathroom, living and dining areas and outdoor terrace with a hot tub.

The ultimate island escape, Great Stirrup Cay’s two bedroom villas can accommodate up to 10 guests and feature two bedrooms, two private bathrooms, living and dining areas, and an expansive outdoor terrace with a dining area and hot tub.

Exclusively for guests of the lagoon retreat, the two-story Silver Palm restaurant will offer complimentary dining with both indoor and outdoor seating, as well as a rooftop terrace.

All luxury villas will also include food and beverage service for guests.

Posted: June 2nd, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Legend Of The Seas To Leave Royal Caribbean Fleet

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Sale to Thomson Cruises Introduces New 2017 Deployments for Global Cruise Line

June 2, 2016 – Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE, RCL) announced today that it has entered into an agreement to sell Royal Caribbean International’s Legend of the Seas to Thomson Cruises. Legend will depart the 25-ship fleet in March of 2017, and immediately transition to its new owner.

In order to continue offering our guests the best possible vacation experience, the current deployment of Rhapsody of the Seas and Vision of the Seas will be adjusted. This will require the cancellation of some sailings and the re-accommodation of others.

Legend of the Seas exits the fleet on March 26, 2017
The current round trip Brisbane, Australia sailings departing on January 6, 15, 29 and February 8 will operate as scheduled.

All scheduled sailings from February 20, 2017 onward will be canceled. This includes the summer season cruises from Venice, Italy as well as the balance of the Brisbane itineraries.

A series of three repositioning cruises will be offered beginning on February 20 from Brisbane. This will include an 11-night sailing from Brisbane to Singapore, as well as a 10-night cruise from Singapore to Dubai and a 13-night sailing from Dubai to Barcelona.

Rhapsody of the Seas will transition to Venice, Italy for the summer season. Sailings from Cape Liberty, New Jersey will be cancelled.

Rhapsody will offer the full schedule of round trip sailings in fall of 2016 and winter of 2017 from Tampa, Florida as planned.

On April 29, Rhapsody will offer a 14-night Transatlantic sailing from Tampa, Florida ending in Barcelona, Spain.

On May 13, Rhapsody will offer a 7-night open jaw sailing from Barcelona, Spain to Venice, Italy.

From May 20 through the end of October, Rhapsody will offer a variety of exciting 7-night round trip sailings from Venice, Italy.

With these newly introduced itineraries, all previously planned sailings from Cape Liberty, New Jersey will be canceled.

At the conclusion of the Mediterranean season, Rhapsody will return to Tampa, Florida as planned and begin sailings on November 19, 2017.

Vision of the Seas will offer four fall foliage sailings from Cape Liberty, New Jersey after completing northerly crossing from Copenhagen, Denmark

On August 22, Vision will offer a 16-night Transatlantic sailing from Copenhagen, Denmark to Cape Liberty, New Jersey with several calls in Denmark, Norway, Scotland and Iceland.

On September 7, Vision will offer a 13-night open jaw sailing from Cape Liberty, New Jersey to Quebec City, Canada. The sailings departing from Cape Liberty on September 20, October 1, and October 11 will replace the previously planned sailings offered on Rhapsody and include calls in Boston, Massachusetts, as well as multiple ports in Maine and Nova Scotia.

Vision’s current fall Europe itineraries, including those departing from Venice, Italy from August 22, 2017 through November 17, 2017 will be canceled.

To accommodate guests booked on the affected sailings, Royal Caribbean will provide vacationers with a full refund of their cruise fare, the opportunity to re-book on another Royal Caribbean ship as well as an onboard credit to use during the newly booked sailing. In addition, vacationers who purchased airfare through Royal Caribbean will receive a full refund. Guests purchasing their own airfare will be given a refund for their airline change fee. All refund transactions will be automatically processed back to the original form of payment within four to six weeks. Commissions for travel agents will be protected for all cruises that are fully paid.

Guests requesting more information are asked to contact Royal Caribbean International’s customer service team at 1-800-256-6649 or their travel agent.

Posted: June 2nd, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Princess Cruises Announces 2017-2018 Americas Season

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Featuring Transits Through New Panama Canal Locks

May 31, 2016 – Princess Cruises has announced its 2017-2018 Americas cruise itineraries from Fall 2017 to Spring 2018 including sailings to the Caribbean, Panama Canal, Mexico, Hawaii, and the California Coast. They range from three to 28 days and went on sale May 19.

In total, 11 ships with 230 departures on more than 30 itineraries visiting 70 destinations will sail between September 2017 and April 2018.

Princess Cruises 2017-2018 Americas Sailings


Highlights include the maiden season of Caribbean Princess on 10-day cruises sailing through the new Panama Canal locks. Roundtrip California Coast voyages from Los Angeles will now include the port of Monterey. Emerald Princess offers a 12-day roundtrip Alaska voyage from Los Angeles in Spring 2018. Princess guests can choose from more short-cruise getaways on both coasts with Crown Princess introducing new five-day departures to the Eastern and Western Caribbean from Ft. Lauderdale while Ruby Princess and Emerald Princess sail four- or five-day options from Los Angeles – with overnight stay in Cabo San Lucas on our five-day!.

Full details of Princess Cruises’ 2017-2018 Americas cruise season include:

Caribbean
Offering the youngest fleet in the region, taking guests to some of the Caribbean’s top-rated beaches and most romantic ports, five Princess Cruises ships will sail 5-day Getaways, 7- and 8-day vacations and voyages from 10-to 21-days long in 2017 and 2018.

Caribbean Princess debuts a new 14-day Circle Caribbean itinerary, sailing roundtrip from Ft. Lauderdale, including visits to Martinique, Barbados, Trinidad, Aruba, Curacao, Antigua, St. Maarten, St. Kitts and a stop at the line’s private beach resort, Princess Cays. The ship offers a special holiday sailing including both Christmas and New Year’s Day.

7-day Caribbean cruises return in 2017 and 2018 with visits to the Eastern and Western Caribbean regions on Regal Princess, while Crown Princess alternates 8-day Eastern and Southern Caribbean and 5-day Getaways to the Eastern and Western Caribbean throughout the season.

Pacific Princess sails a holiday 14-day Caribbean Connoisseur voyage, visiting islands not typically included on other Caribbean itineraries for an off-the-beaten path exploration, including St. Croix, Nevis, Guadeloupe, Tobago and Virgin Gorda.

Royal Princess returns to the Caribbean including 10-day Southern Medley and 10-day Eastern Voyager itineraries which can be combined for a 20-day vacation. These sailings offer the best of the Caribbean including St. Kitts, Barbados and St. Lucia as well as ports that are off-the-beaten path such as Dominica, Grenada and Bonaire.

Panama Canal
2017-2018 will be the maiden season for transiting the new Panama Canal locks, with Caribbean Princess offering partial transits on 10-day voyages roundtrip from Ft. Lauderdale.

Coral Princess, Island Princess and Pacific Princess all sail ocean to ocean with full transit offerings through all three sets of the original Canal locks – Gatun, Pedro Miguel and Miraflores Locks, with Coral Princess offering an extra day in Fuerte Amador for guests to fully experience historic Panama City.

Guests may take advantage of the line’s Connoisseur voyages on board Pacific Princess, sailing a 17-day voyage with a call to the unique port of Santa Marta, Colombia.

Finally, Island Princess sails a roundtrip Los Angeles departure for transits through the Pedro Miguel and Miraflores locks, offering guests a nostalgic cruise experience to the Panama Canal.

Hawaii, Mexico, California Coast and Alaska
On the West Coast, five ships will be deployed from three homeports – Los Angeles, San Francisco and Vancouver – to Hawaii and Mexico, as well as the California Coast, and a Princess-first voyage to Alaska roundtrip from Los Angeles. Voyages range from 4 to 28 days.

Star Princess homeports in Los Angeles sailing 10 voyages to the Hawaiian Islands with port calls in Oahu, Maui, Kauai and the Big Island. Grand Princess homeports in San Francisco sailing seven voyages visiting the islands of Oahu, Maui, Kauai and the Big Island.

Roundtrip departures from Vancouver, British Columbia to the Hawaiian Islands are also available on Star Princess in the fall and spring. Emerald Princess also features two 28-day cruises to Hawaii, Tahiti and Samoa in the fall and spring.

The line’s popular Mexico cruises are available as 7-day voyages from Los Angeles, visiting Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cabo San Lucas, or as 10-day cruises from San Francisco with the added port of Manzanillo. In addition, 10-day Baja Peninsula & Sea of Cortez voyages return, sailing from Los Angeles to the ports of San Diego, Cabo San Lucas, La Paz, Loreto, Puerto Vallarta and the California Coast.

Offering the ultimate California food and wine experience, the line’s 7-day sailings from Los Angeles and 10-day cruises from Vancouver include the new port of Monterey on the California coast, offering opportunities to visit the world-famous Pebble Beach Golf Course, the Monterey Bay Aquarium and the breathtaking coastal views of the region’s iconic 17-Mile-Drive. Ruby Princess and Emerald Princess also sail on select 4-day West Coast Getaway voyages from Los Angeles including Santa Barbara or Catalina Island and Ensenada, Mexico, while 5-day Cabo San Lucas Getaways include an overnight in the popular destination.

A Princess first, Emerald Princess departs on a 12-day roundtrip voyage from Los Angeles with port calls in Juneau, Skagway, Ketchikan and Vancouver, featuring scenic cruising of Glacier Bay National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

More Ashore
Offering guests more time to explore local cultures and culinary offerings, select itineraries in the Caribbean, California and Hawaii offer extended stays in Aruba, Curacao, St. Thomas, Cozumel, San Francisco, San Diego, Long Beach and Honolulu, as well an overnight stay in Cabo San Lucas on the line’s five-day voyages from Los Angeles.

Posted: May 31st, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Carnival Vista Features Two-Deck ‘Cloud 9 Spa’

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Infrared Sauna and Hammam Chamber Among Array of Options for Personal Pampering and Rejuvenation

May 26, 2016 – The brand new Carnival Vista’s Cloud 9 Spa features an array of amenities, including Carnival’s first infrared sauna and Hammam Chamber, as well as special “experience showers” that provide a soothing fragrance element, a large heated whirlpool, four steam chambers and a high-tech indoor cycling studio.

Let’s Take A Closer Look At The Carnival Vista Cloud 9 Spa

Exclusive to Carnival Vista is the Infrared Heat Chamber. The chamber’s heating system is built into the walls with 80 percent of the heat gently warming the body and the remaining 20 percent of infrared heat released into the air, providing cooler, more consistent temperatures than traditional saunas.

The beneficial effects of a sauna remain the same: body detoxification to increase energy, burn calories, decrease inflammation, relieve pain and improve blood circulation in the skin to enhance delivery of oxygen and nutrients.

Another Carnival Vista exclusive is the Hammam Chamber, developed during the Ottoman Empire as a place of regeneration, contemplation and inner peace. The aim is both physical and spiritual cleansing, along with loosening of joints and muscles by ladling warm water over the body to slowly increase temperature to approximately 113 degrees F.

Carnival Vista’s Cloud 9 Spa also features an elaborate Thermal Suite, which offers intensive relaxation and a new sensory experience provided through individually designed heat therapy rooms that cleanse, tone and purify the body using alternating dry and wet heat chambers. The thermal suite is an exclusive facility within the spa offering different areas for specific therapeutic needs.

The Steam Chamber with Aroma Steam and Aromatic Grotto is a small, intimate chamber where high humidity and radiant heat create a moist, warm climate that gently but thoroughly cleanses the skin and respiratory tract with herbal steam featuring sweet aromas such as cinnamon, orange or apple.

The Laconium, is a large dry heat bath/sauna-like chamber where circulation is stimulated, accelerating and mobilizing the body’s own defenses, while reducing stress.

Cloud 9 Spa Relaxation Beds


Carnival Vista’s Cloud 9 Spa also has a fitness center with the latest cardio and weight-training equipment catering to all conditioning levels. The fitness center serves as the location for a wide range of instructor-led exercise classes, including a new indoor cycling studio.

Powered by Myzone, RYDE is a 45-minute indoor cycling class that takes riders through a series of climbs and sprints to target all energy systems, while integrating technology to track riders’ intensity and enhance their future workout results. The combination of modern and old school music fuels the atmosphere for an upbeat high energy work out that leaves riders with a feeling of achievement.

RYDE Cycling Center


Additional Cloud 9 Spa amenities include treatment rooms for European-style massages and facials, two saunas (men/women), two locker rooms (men/women), a post-treatment relaxation room where guests can lounge, enjoy herbal tea and relish the sensation of pure relaxation and a VIP treatment room with whirlpool.

As part of the Cloud 9 Spa located forward on decks 12 and 14, Carnival Vista features 98 spa staterooms and six spa suites. Guests in these accommodations have convenient access to the spa and are eligible for exclusive spa packages, discounts and priority spa appointments. These staterooms and suites have additional in-room, spa-related amenities and décor different than other accommodations, in harmony with the soothing and relaxing theme of the Cloud 9 Spa.

Spa Stateroom on Carnival Vista


A salon with full hair and nail services, men’s barber/grooming area and special stations for manicures and pedicures round out Carnival Vista’s Cloud 9 Spa services and facilities.

Carnival Vista debuted May 1 and will operate a summer schedule of Mediterranean cruises through October. The ship will then reposition to New York for a pair of 11-day voyages in November 2016 before launching year-round six- and eight-day Caribbean cruises service from Miami later that month.

Posted: May 26th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Royal Caribbean’s Empress Of The Seas Arrives at New Homeport of Miami

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May 25, 2016 – After an almost two-month delay which saw 13 cruises cancelled in order to complete extensive remodeling – including demolishing and installing all new food storage areas and galleys throughout the ship as well as a general refurbishing – Empress of the Seas arrived at her new homeport of Miami today.

Empress of the Seas offers the Royal Caribbean classic rock-climbing wall; new pools and whirlpools; a spa with an extensive treatment menu; and the Adventure Ocean youth program.

The brand’s signature steakhouse Chops Grille has also been installed. In addition, the ship has the new Voom internet which boasts of the fastest internet speeds at sea.

Empress Of The Seas Arrives at PortMiami


The ship will set sail on Friday, May 27, visiting Royal Caribbean’s private island CocoCay, Bahamas and Nassau, Bahamas. The ship will then offer short 4- and 5-night getaways from Miami to Nassau, The Bahamas; Cozumel and Costa Maya, Mexico; Grand Cayman and Key West, Florida. With longer stays in every port, guests will be able to experience sunsets in the Caribbean. Plus, on select 5-night itineraries, guest can experience the authentic Mexican culture and cuisine during overnight stays in Cozumel, Mexico, which I particularly like.

Public comments made recently by Royal Caribbean executives indicate that once the company receives the necessary approvals, Empress Of The Seas will be making cruises to Cuba. No official word or timeline has been released, although many media reports state that Cuba cruises aboard Empress could begin as soon as July. Stay tuned.

Posted: May 25th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Princess Cruises ‘Red, White & Blue Sale’

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Offer Also Includes Free Gratuities and a Reduced Deposit

May 24, 2016 – Princess Cruises’ Red, White & Blue Sale features cruise savings on cruise vacations departing from North America to the Caribbean, California Coast, Mexico, Canada & New England, Panama Canal and the Hawaiian Islands. Cruise fares are available as low as $79 per guest, per day for Mexico itineraries and $89 per guest, per day for California coast and Caribbean sailings.

In addition to these great cruise prices, first and second guests will receive free stateroom gratuities. Guests can also reserve their booking with a reduced deposit of only $100 per person.

Examples of Red, White & Blue Sale cruise deals include:

Caribbean cruise — 6 days: from only $89 per person, per day ($529 cruise fare)

Mexico cruise — 7 days: $79 per person, per day ($549 cruise fare)

California Coast cruise — 7-days: $89 per person, per day ($599 cruise fare)

Canada & New England cruise — 7 days: $169 per person, per day ($1,149 cruise fare)

Hawaii cruise — 15 days: $109 per person, per day ($1,599 cruise fare)

Panama Canal cruise — 10 days: $129 per person, per day ($1,289 cruise fare)

Guests can also bring the whole family along with third and fourth guest cruise fare starting at only $29 per person, per day.

To thank the men and women of the American and Canadian militaries for their service, Princess Cruises offers up to $250 free onboard spending money for veterans as well as active, retired or disabled military personnel. This special military benefit is eligible on any cruise, any time of the year and can be used to purchase a variety of amenities and experiences including Lotus Spa treatments, specialty restaurant dining, gifts, jewelry and clothing in our onboard boutiques, and Princess Cruises shore excursions.

Additional details about the “Red, White & Blue Sale” as well as other cruise deals and promotions from Princess Cruises can be found at princess.com/cruisedeals.

All cruise prices are per person, based on double occupancy. The “Red, White & Blue Sale” runs through 11:59 p.m. PDT on July 6, 2016 and is available to residents of the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, Mexico and Bermuda.

Posted: May 24th, 2016 under Hot Cruise Deals.
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Disney Cruise Line Returning to New York, California, and Texas in Fall 2017

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Sailings from popular home ports return for limited-time engagements

May 24, 2016 – In the fall of 2017, Disney Cruise Line will return to New York with sailings to the Bahamas and the Canadian coast – including a new seven-night Canada cruise. San Diego will serve as a home port with cruises to Mexico, and Galveston will again be a homeport with sailings to the Caribbean and Bahamas.

New Canada coast itinerary and new ports from New York

Disney Cruise Line returns to New York City in the fall of 2017, for a mix of voyages that include Canada coast and Bahamas itineraries.

On October 21, the Disney Magic will sail from New York on a seven-night Canada sailing – the line’s longest-ever voyage to the Atlantic Canada coast. This sailing includes a new port of call for Disney Cruise Line – Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island.

Bar Harbor, Maine, is another new port of call for Disney Cruise Line and part of a five-night sailing that departs New York on Sept. 27. This cruise also will stop at Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada.

A total of six seven- and eight-night sailings to the Bahamas, all including a visit to Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay, will be a part of the 2017 New York season.

Each guest on these sailings will receive a one-day Walt Disney World Park Hopper ticket and round-trip transportation for the short drive between the ship and the resort.

Return to San Diego, California

In September and October of 2017, Disney Cruise Line will return to San Diego with a variety of Disney Wonder cruises to Baja and the Mexican Riviera.

On most Baja sailings, guests can visit Cabo San Lucas and Ensenada, Mexico, to enjoy world-famous beaches and snorkeling. Two-night cruises depart San Diego on Sept. 15, Sept. 22 and Oct. 13, and a three-night cruise departs Oct. 5 and includes a day at sea.

Mexican Riviera itineraries feature snorkeling and scuba diving hot spots, while Puerto Vallerta and Mazatlan are where cliff divers, culture and ziplining through the jungle canopy take center stage. Seven-night itineraries departing on Sept. 24 and Oct. 15, call on Puerto Vallerta, Mazatlan and Cabo San Lucas. Four additional four- and five-night Mexican Riviera cruises set sail during the season in San Diego.

Return to Galveston, Texas

Disney Cruise Line returns to Galveston in 2017, with a line up of eight seven-night cruises to the Caribbean and the Bahamas. All Bahamian itineraries include a stop at Castaway Cay, Disney’s private island in the Bahamas.

On Nov. 10 and Dec. 1, the Disney Wonder will sail a western Caribbean itinerary from Galveston to Cozumel, Grand Cayman and Falmouth, Jamaica.

On Nov. 17, Nov. 24, Dec, 8, Dec. 15, Dec. 22 and Dec. 29, the Disney Wonder will sail from Galveston to Key West, Nassau and Castaway Cay.

Bookings open on May 26, 2016. More details on the itineraries can be found on the Ports and Itineraries for 2017 page of disneycruise.com.

Posted: May 24th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Norwegian’s ‘Free At Sea’ Promo Lets Guests Choose up to 5 Free Offers

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Oceanview, Balcony or Mini-Suites can choose two free offers and Haven & Suites receive five offerings valued up to $2600


May 18, 2016 – Norwegian Cruise Line is offering a new Free at Sea offer. From now through June 30, 2016, guests can choose from up to five free offers to enhance their onboard experience when they book a new cruise. (all of the *, **, ***, and ^ shown below signify rules, caveats, and exclusions for these offers, listed at the bottom of this article)

Guests who book a new five-day or longer sailing in an oceanview, balcony, or minisuite category stateroom† can select their preference of two choices from four onboard amenity offers, including free Unlimited Beverages*, free Specialty Dining package*, free shore excursion credits, a free 250 minute WiFi package**, or Norwegian’s Friends & Family Sail Free offer which allows 3rd and 4th guests to sail for free on select dates.

Inside staterooms as well as Norwegian’s Studio staterooms for solo travelers can choose one free offer. Guests who book a sailing in a full suite or the exclusive ‘The Haven’ will get all five free amenities, providing up to $2,600 in added value to their cruise.

Guests looking at a Hawaii cruise vacation have their own offer^ on the only ship to sail within the islands, the Pride of America. . Those who book a new seven-day intra-Hawaii cruise now through June 30, 2016 aboard the recently refurbished Pride of America in any stateroom category will have the freedom to select one of five offers to enhance their cruising experience including a free one-night pre-cruise hotel stay***, a free Specialty Dining Package**, free pre-paid gratuities for the first and second guest in the stateroom, a free $50 per port shore excursion credits in up to four ports, or Norwegian’s Friends & Family Sail Free on select sail dates. Guests who book a suite aboard Pride of America will receive all five offers.

Norwegian has also extended its special Europe package offer, for those looking for a virtually all-inclusive European vacation. Available now through June 30, 2016, guests who book an inside, oceanview, balcony or mini-suite can book round-trip air, transfers and a one night pre-cruise hotel stay as a package with rates starting at just $1,999^*– plus, guests sailing on a Europe sailing that purchase this package can choose two^** of four free offers including free Unlimited Beverages*, free Specialty Dining package*, free shore excursion credits, or a free 250 minute WiFi package**. During summer 2016, Norwegian will have four ships based in Europe. Norwegian Spirit will sail the Baltic Capitals from Copenhagen, Norwegian Spirit will sail 12-night Grand Mediterranean cruises from Barcelona and Venice, Norwegian Jade will sail the Greek Isles from Venice and the recently renovated Norwegian Epic will sail seven-day Western Mediterranean cruises from Barcelona.

Norwegian’s newest ship, Norwegian Escape, is currently sailing a seven-day Eastern Caribbean itinerary from Miami, features 28 dining options, Tony Award-winning Broadway entertainment, the brand’s first nursery with supervised care for young cruisers ages six months to two years, and much more. Norwegian Getaway, also sailing from Miami, brings the energy of the Magic City to life with seven-day Western Caribbean cruises.

Now for the fine print:

†All sailings 5 nights or longer. Offer is not applicable to categories IX, OX, BX, MX.

*Guests are responsible for an 18% gratuity for retail value for Specialty Dining Package, Unlimited Beverage Package, and/ or the Soda Package, with pricing based on number of cruise nights. Suites or Haven guests will not be responsible for the 18% gratuities related to the Specialty Dining Package, Unlimited Beverage Package, and/or the Soda Package. Number of meals for specialty dining package based on length of itinerary.

** One login per stateroom. On Norwegian Breakaway, stateroom receives an internet package of 250 minutes or 1000 MB of data.

^Pride of America offer available for bookings for cruises through December 16, 2017; cruises must be booked more than 30 days prior sailing, when selecting hotel option

***Offer valid for Waikiki Marriott Resort-city view room. In the event that the hotel scheduled to be used in package is unavailable, for any reason, Norwegian Cruise Line reserves the right to substitute the hotel included in package. One night pre-hotel offer is available on reservations with 4 guests or less. If choosing 1 night pre hotel option, reservation must be made more than 30 days prior to sailing.

^*Fares vary based on ship, sail date and gateway airport. Suite and Havens are not eligible for this offer.

^**Guest booking Air, Transfers, 1 Night Pre Hotel, Cruise Rate, and Pick 2, must book at least 65 days before sailing departure. Guest booking Air, Transfers, Cruise Rate, and Pick 2, must book at least 45 days before sailing departure.

Posted: May 18th, 2016 under Hot Cruise Deals.
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Royal Caribbean International’s Harmony of the Seas Makes Her World Debut

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Featuring the Tallest Slide at Sea, The Ultimate Abyss!

May 17, 2016 – The port of Southampton, U.K. was bustling today as onlookers gathered to be among the first to see the world’s largest cruise ship, Harmony of the Seas, upon her first arrival into port. After 32 months of construction, the ship’s arrival marks a major milestone for Royal Caribbean International as Harmony becomes the 25th ship in the fleet.

Harmony Arrives In Southampton


Intricately built with more than 500,000 individual parts, Harmony measures 362 meters (1,188 feet) and weighs 226,963 gross registered tons.

The newest addition to the family combines the distinct seven-neighborhood concept that Royal Caribbean’s Oasis class of ships are known for with a lineup of the most modern and groundbreaking vacation amenities. Innovative features include The Ultimate Abyss, the tallest slide at sea with a 10-story plunge; robot bartenders at The Bionic Bar, powered by Makr Shakr; virtual balconies with real-time views of the destination and VOOM – the fastest internet at sea – so that guests can stay connected, stream their favorite entertainment and share their adventures with family and friends back at home.

Harmony Of The Seas


Harmony of the Seas will sail from Southampton, U.K. on a series of short getaways to Northern Europe before embarking on her maiden cruise on May 29, arriving in Barcelona, Spain on June 5. The unparalleled cruise ship and her 2,100 dedicated crew members then will officially launch her inaugural summer season with the first of 34 seven-night western Mediterranean sailings on June 7.

In November 2016, Harmony will arrive at her homeport of Port Everglades, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., from where she will offer seven-night Eastern and Western Caribbean sailings. The newest member of the fleet will join sister ships Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, homeported in Port Canaveral and Port Everglades respectively, on the east coast of Florida.

Posted: May 17th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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Carnival Vista Offers Amazing Array of Dining and Bar Choices

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Everything from Ji Ji Asian Kitchen and Cucina del Capitano Italian Restaurant to Seafood Shack and Havana Bar … and an Onboard Brewery!

May 12, 2016 – A hallmark of Carnival Cruise Line is that their ships offer many dining choices that are included in the cruise price, and the new Carnival Vista is no exception. From authentic Asian cuisine and a New England–inspired seafood eatery to light bites with a Cuban flair, the ship offers what I consider to be an exciting and flavorful array of international dining choices.

Complementing the dining is a wide variety of bars, lounges and watering holes including the line’s first on-board brewery. I can’t wait to sample the beers brewed aboard!

Seafood Shack. Check Out That Lobster!


Dining venues and bars featured on Carnival Vista include:

BlueIguana Cantina – Open for breakfast and lunch, BlueIguana Cantina serves authentic tacos on fresh-made tortillas and made-to-order burritos that can be personalized by diners at an extensive salsa and toppings bar.

Bonsai Sushi — Bonsai Sushi has been expanded on Carnival Vista to offer cooked-to-order items like Shrimp Tempura, Chicken Katsu, Omakase (Chef’s Choice) and various noodle bowls, complementing a variety of sushi, sashimi and bento boxes.

Cherry on Top — For those with a sweet tooth, Cherry on Top serves up ingredients mixed by hand and made to order. Cool concoctions include a base of ice cream and at least four toppings, from whipped cream and hot fudge to Oreo cookie pieces and pineapple chunks. Additionally, when guests order Brownie Buoy – hand-selected by kids at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital – a donation is made to the hospital.

Cucina del Capitano — A celebration of Carnival Cruise Line’s deep roots in Italy — all of the fleet’s captains are Italian — Cucina del Capitano serves up a variety of Italian favorites family-style.

Fahrenheit 555 — This classic American steakhouse offers mouth-watering steaks and other gourmet fare with impeccable service.

Guy’s Burger Joint — A guest favorite, Guy’s features fresh-made burgers, hand-cut fries and innovative toppings created in partnership with Food Network personality Guy Fieri.

Havana Bar — This popular bar specializing in mojitos and Cuba Libres has added a bar menu. From Sabor de Habana, a sampler plate, to ceviche de mariscos, ropa vieja and pan con bistec, guests can taste authentic dishes of Cuba.

JavaBlue Café — Featuring coffee straight-up, or perhaps with an upgrade, JavaBlue Café serves hot and cold drinks with a fun twist. Guests also can enjoy sweet treats and comfort snacks.

Ji Ji Asian Kitchen — Serving up enticing dishes in an eclectic space, Ji Ji brings not only great food, but good fortune to the table. Offering a full-service menu featuring a mix of exotic and familiar dishes designed to challenge and delight the senses, the venue offers a truly unique culinary experience.

Pizzeria del Capitano — Pizzeria del Capitano offers five varieties of hand-tossed artisanal-style pizza, all available free of charge 24 hours a day.

Lido Marketplace — A casual poolside eatery offering an array of international favorites, from paninis to comfort food to a New York-style deli and just about everything in between.

Ocean Plaza — An indoor/outdoor café serving cappuccinos, lattes, and espressos as well as pastries and other confections.

RedFrog Pub & Brewery — Delicious Caribbean bites are served here, but the star is the hand-crafted beer brewed on board in the line’s first onboard brewery developed in collaboration with Miami-based Concrete Beach Brewery. The Caribbean-inspired brews include the aromatic and citrusy Port Hoppin’ IPA, spicy ThirstyFrog Caribbean Wheat unfiltered lager and rich and creamy FriskyFrog Java Stout.

Seafood Shack – A Carnival Vista exclusive, Seafood Shack features traditional fare like New England clam chowder, lobster rolls, crab cake sliders and fried clam strips served by the bucket, with steamed lobster, snow crab, peel-and-eat shrimp and raw oysters sold by the pound.

Serenity — Salads, sandwiches, wraps and other light fare is available at the ship’s exclusive adults-only retreat.

Shake Spot — Shake Spot offers more than just your average shakes and floats. Guests can sip on hand-crafted classics, fruity-flavored treats and even spiked indulgences.

The Chef’s Table — This VIP experience starts with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres for an exclusive group of 14 guests, followed by a tour to see the galley in operation. The evening concludes with an impressive full-service dinner of appetizers, entrees and desserts not found on the regular menus, all hosted by one of the ship’s master chefs.

The Taste Bar — Offering complimentary bite-size preview offerings inspired by popular Carnival dining venues, along with a signature cocktail tied to the day’s particular theme available for purchase.

American Table/American Feast – Featuring extensive menus and wine lists in the Horizons and Reflections main dining rooms with a wide range of appetizers, side dishes, entrees and desserts, as well as shareable items for the table.

After spending it’s initial few months sailing the Mediterranean, Carnival Vista embarks on a special 13-day transatlantic crossing on October 21 and arrives in New York November 3, then operates a pair of 11-day voyages from the Big Apple before repositioning to Miami for year-round Caribbean departures later that month.

Posted: May 12th, 2016 under Cruise Ship News.
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