Friday, December 29, 2017

Carly Rae Jepsen To Perform Aboard Carnival Splendor in February 2018

Grammy Award-nominated, multi-platinum, singer/songwriter Carly Rae Jepsen, who has sold more than 20 million singles worldwide, will perform a free concert aboard Carnival Splendor in February 2018, as part of the Carnival LIVE Concert Series.

While the concert is a departure from previous Carnival LIVE performances in that it is free and open to all guests sailing on Carnival Splendor’s Feb. 17, 2018, seven-day voyage, it continues the line’s mission of bringing the best in live entertainment to the seas and providing guests an opportunity to enjoy captivating performances by top artists in a memorable setting. The concert will take place on Carnival Splendor’s Lido Deck Feb. 18 while the ship is at sea during a week-long Mexican Riviera cruise that operates round-trip from Long Beach, Calif. The voyage features a day-long call at Puerto Vallarta and two days at Cabo San Lucas.

Jepsen broke onto the music scene in 2012 with her major label debut Kiss that included the smash hit “Call Me Maybe” which climbed to #1 on the iTunes Singles charts in more than 47 countries and earned her Grammy Award nominations for Best Pop Solo Performance and Song of the Year. After earning rave reviews starring in the Broadway production of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella, Jepsen released her next album, E·MO·TION, which received critical acclaim and featured the Billboard Top 40 hit “I Really Like You.” Jepsen also starred as the iconic Pink Lady, “Frenchy,” in FOX’s four-time EMMY award winning musical GREASE: LIVE and most recently voiced the character of Odette in the animated movie “LEAP!”. “LEAP!” featured Jepsen’s song “Cut To The Feeling” which has been hailed by critics as a top song of 2017 showing up on year end lists for Rolling Stone, Pitchfork, Billboard, Noisey and more.

Jepsen joins an impressive lineup of Carnival LIVE artists who run the gamut of musical genres, from rock, country, R&B, and pop, as well as some of the biggest names in comedy. Previous Carnival LIVE artists include music superstars Tim McGraw and Carrie Underwood and comedians Jim Gaffigan and Chris Tucker.

“While I’ve performed all over the world and on Broadway, I’ve never performed on a cruise ship before and I’m really looking forward to a night with my fans in what promises to be a unique venue for an incredible night,” Jepsen said.

“We’re delighted to have Carly bring her signature brand of pop music to guests sailing aboard Carnival Splendor,” said Sarah Beth Reno, Carnival’s vice president of entertainment. “A free open-air concert on Lido Deck is an exciting new twist for Carnival LIVE and we can’t wait for our guests to experience this one-of-a-kind entertainment concept in an entirely new setting,” she added.

To learn more about Carnival Cruise Line, visit Carnival.com.

Image Courtesy Carnival Cruise Line

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Silversea Schedules Culinary & Wine 'Enriched Voyages' for 2018 & 2019

Luxury cruise line Silversea is serving up a new menu of 2018 and 2019 Enriched Voyages featuring enhanced onboard enrichment with a culinary or wine theme, including five sailings developed in partnership with The Peninsula Hotels.

"Our culinary and wine Enriched Voyages are a wonderful way to blend together fascinating destinations with a generous serving of cooking events and demonstrations designed to entertain and enlighten," said Rudi Scholdis, Silversea's culinary director.

THE ASIAN COLLECTION
Exclusive voyages offering a culinary exploration of this enchanting continent enhanced by the insider knowledge of the prestigious Peninsula Hotels. Guest chefs from The Peninsula Hotels will share their expertise with guests, providing a truly immersive gastronomic and cultural experience of the Far East. Here's a snapshot of the journeys:
Silver Shadow departs April 14, 2018 on an 11-day ocean voyage from Singapore to Hong Kong with calls in Koh Samui, Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh City, and Chan May.
Silver Shadow departs October 14, 2018 on a 15-day ocean voyage from Hong Kong to Tokyo with calls in Shanghai, Kagoshima, Hiroshima, Osaka, and Nagoya.
Silver Shadow departs October 29, 2018 on a 15-day ocean voyage from Tokyo to Hong Kong with calls in Osaka, Hiroshima, Tianjin (Beijing), and Shanghai.
Silver Whisper departs March 2, 2019 on a 16-day segment of World Cruise 2019, an ocean voyage from Tokyo to Singapore with calls in Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Ho Chi Minh City.
Silver Muse departs April 3, 2019 on a 13-day segment of Grand Voyage 2019 - Asia Pacific, an ocean voyage from Hong Kong to Tokyo with calls in Shanghai, Jeju, Hiroshima, and Osaka.
CULINARY VOYAGES
Silversea chefs share their expertise through guided market-to-plate excursions, special menus, cooking demonstrations and dinners highlighting regional specialties. Over a dozen captivating itineraries feature the culinary enrichment program, including:
Silver Muse departs February 16, 2018 on a 25-day, ocean and Amazon River voyage from Rio de Janeiro to Fort Lauderdale with calls in Salvador de Bahia, Natal, Fortaleza, Macapá, Santarém, Boca da Valeria, Manaus, Parintins, Alter do Chao, Barbados, and San Juan.
Silver Wind departs July 17, 2018 on a 15-day, roundtrip ocean voyage to Norway's North Cape from London (Tower Bridge) with calls in Haugesund, Flåm, Ålesund, Brønnøysund, Leknes, Narvik, Honningsvåg, Hammerfest, Tromsø, Åndalsnes, Molde, and Bergen.
Silver Cloud departs October 26, 2018 on a 16-day, South America expedition voyage from Callao (Lima) to Punta Arenas with explorations of Paracas, Arica, Antofagasta, Isla Pan de Azúcar, Coquimbo, Niebla, Puerto Montt, Puerto Chacabuco, Tortel, English Narrows, Pío XI Glacier, Chilean Fjords, Alberto de Agostini National Park, and Ainsworth Bay.
Silver Shadow departs April 26, 2019 on a 15-day, Africa and Indian Ocean voyage from Dubai to Athens with calls in Khasab, Sur, Salalah, Aqaba, Safaga, and Rhodes.
Silver Wind departs July 20, 2019 on an 11-day, Northern Europe ocean voyage from London (Tower Bridge) to Reykjavik with calls in Saint-Malo, St. Mary's Isles of Scilly, Cobh, Dublin, Belfast, Oban, and Ullapool.
WINE VOYAGES
World-class vintners and Silversea's Wine Ambassador spotlight superlative varietals and vintages with special tastings and private tours to renowned vineyards and wineries on four fascinating sailings, including:
Silver Spirit departs January 15, 2018 on an 18-day, Africa and Indian Ocean voyage from Cape Town to Mahé with calls in Port Elizabeth, East London, Durban, Richards Bay, Maputo, Nosy Be/Nosy Komba, Mamoudzou, Zanzibar, and Mombasa.
Silver Whisper departs February 4, 2018 on a 16-day segment of World Cruise 2018, an ocean voyage from Auckland to Sydney with calls in Tauranga, Napier, Wellington, Picton, Akaroa, Port Chalmers (Dunedin), Burnie, and Melbourne.
Silver Whisper departs October 18, 2018 on a 13-day, transatlantic ocean voyage from Lisbon to Fort Lauderdale with calls in Casablanca and Funchal. Wine enrichment includes an introductory sommelier course.
Silver Whisper departs May 19, 2019 on a 14-day, Northern Europe ocean voyage from London (Greenwich) to Barcelona with calls in Honfleur, Saint-Malo, Bordeaux, Bilbao, Lisbon, Cádiz, and Málaga.
For complete details, please visit Silversea.com.

Image Courtesy Silversea Cruises

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Norwegian Cruise Line Announces Summer 2019 Itineraries

Norwegian Cruise Line has revealed the fleet’s lineup of summer 2019 itineraries, featuring some of the world’s hottest summer destinations. Norwegian’s signature cruising experience, which offers guests the freedom and flexibility to design their ideal vacation, will be available around the globe with five ships sailing in Europe; three cruising to Alaska; two calling on Bermuda; as well as itineraries that include the Bahamas & Florida, the Caribbean, Canada & New England and the Hawaiian islands.

Guests who cruise with Norwegian enjoy a resort-style vacation on some of the youngest ships at sea; they unpack once, then relax as they travel to paradise aboard innovative and action-packed ships that offer up to 27 delicious dining options, Broadway entertainment, more than 20 bars and lounges serving up contemporary craft cocktails and much more. Norwegian’s new itineraries are now open for sale.

“We have carefully crafted a mix of itineraries for summer 2019 that provide our guests with an incredible array of cruise vacation experiences in some of the most sought-after destinations across the globe,” said Andy Stuart, president and chief executive officer for Norwegian Cruise Line. “With exotic cultural-centric cruises in Europe, adventure opportunities in Alaska and quintessential summer beach getaways in Bermuda, the Bahamas, the Caribbean and Hawaii, Norwegian Cruise Line’s itinerary options will fulfill every summer travel wish list.”

Alaska
The youngest fleet to sail to the breathtaking glaciers of Alaska will once again return to the region in summer 2019, with Norwegian Bliss, Norwegian Pearl, and Norwegian Jewel all cruising to the Last Frontier. After making her debut in summer 2018, Norwegian Bliss will return for her second Alaska season, sailing exciting new seven-day Glacier Bay voyages departing each Sunday from Seattle beginning May 5 through September 22, 2019. The largest and most innovative ship to sail to Alaska, Norwegian Bliss is the first cruise ship custom-built with features and amenities for the ultimate Alaska cruise experience, including extensive observation lounges and an expansive waterfront featuring dining and lounges.

Norwegian Pearl, which recently underwent an extensive renovation earlier this year as a part of the Norwegian Edge® program, will sail seven-day Alaska cruises from Seattle departing on Saturdays from May 18 through September 21. Rounding out the Alaska fleet, Norwegian Jewel will return to Vancouver and Seward after a bow to stern enhancement in fall 2018 to sail her incredibly popular seven-day Glacier Bay northbound and Inside Passage southbound Alaska highlights voyages, offering guests the opportunity to combine back-to-back sailings for an immersive 14-day roundtrip cruise.

Bahamas & Florida
For the first time since 2010, Norwegian Dawn will return to her very first homeport of New York City as essentially a new ship, after undergoing bow to stern enhancements in late 2016. Norwegian Dawn will set sail from Manhattan on seven-day cruises to the Bahamas & Florida, bringing guests the best of beaches, theme parks and sunshine from May 25 to August 31, 2019.
Bermuda

In summer 2019, Norwegian will once again offer guests two convenient departure ports from which to set sail for the pink sand beaches and turquoise blue waters of Bermuda. Guests sailing from Boston will enjoy exploring this exotic Atlantic island from a newer and larger ship, Norwegian Gem, a popular Jewel-class ship that will homeport in Beantown from March 29 through November 8, 2019. Norwegian Escape, which moves to New York City for summer 2018, will continue her stay in the Big Apple through the summer 2019 season, sailing to Bermuda from April 14 until October 20, 2019. Both Norwegian Gem and Norwegian Escape will offer the perfect summer city getaway, with seven-day cruises to Bermuda featuring three full days in port and two overnight stays, so guests can experience the beautiful British territory at their leisure.

Canada & New England
Early summer is the best time to enjoy the beauty and stunning scenery of New England and coastal Canada. Norwegian Dawn will offer four, seven-day cruises to this spectacular coast line in May and June 2019, with calls in Halifax, Nova Scotia; Saint John, Bay of Fundy, New Brunswick; Bar Harbor and Portland, Maine; and Newport, Rhode Island.

Caribbean
After returning from her first winter season in New Orleans, Norwegian Breakaway will reposition from the Big Easy to the cruise capital of the world, PortMiami, for the first time ever. As one of the largest ships in the fleet, the 4,000-passenger Norwegian Breakaway will homeport in Miami for her summer 2019 season and cruise a mix of Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries. Norwegian Breakaway’s seven-day Western Caribbean itineraries will visit Roatán, Bay Islands, Honduras; Cozumel and Costa Maya, Mexico; and the beautiful island destination of Harvest Caye, Belize. Norwegian Breakaway’s seven-day Eastern Caribbean itinerary will feature some of the region’s most popular ports-of-call including St. Thomas, USVI; Tortola, BVI; Nassau, Bahamas and San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Europe
The romance, history and charm of Europe will be on full display for guests exploring the region aboard Norwegian Getaway, Norwegian Epic, Norwegian Jade, Norwegian Star, and Norwegian Spirit.

After a one year hiatus, Norwegian Getaway will once again return to the Baltic, sailing incredibly popular bucket list itineraries departing from Copenhagen that feature several calls in Scandinavia with an overnight in Russia. From June 7 through August 27, 2019, Norwegian Getaway will sail a variety of nine-day sailings with ports-of-call that include Berlin (Warnemünde), Germany; Tallinn, Estonia; Helsinki, Finland; Stockholm, Sweden; an overnight in St. Petersburg, Russia and a day cruising past the Stockholm Archipelago.

The popular Norwegian Epic will return to Europe in summer 2019 to sail seven-day Western Mediterranean cruises, with embarkation available in either Barcelona and Rome (Civitavecchia), showcasing the best of Italy, France and Spain. With departures from May 12 through November 3, 2019, guests sailing aboard Norwegian Epic’s seven-day Western Europe cruises will be delighted by some of the most culturally rich and iconic destinations in the world. Guests will also enjoy 22 dining options, 20 bars and lounges, vibrant Broadway entertainment including Priscilla Queen of the Dessert: The Musical and Burn the Floor, and more.

Following an extensive renovation in 2017, Norwegian Jade will spend her summer 2019 season cruising the azure blue waters of the Greek Isles & Italy from May 12 through October 24, 2019. Norwegian Jade’s 10- and 11-day itineraries from Rome (Civitavecchia) will feature a look into some of the world’s most ancient civilizations with calls in Santorini, Athens (Piraeus), Mykonos, and Crete (Chania), Greece; Valletta, Malta; Messina, Sicily; as well as Naples and Florence/Pisa (Livorno), Italy. Norwegian Star, which will undergo a refurbishment in spring 2018, will also sail the Greek Isles and Eastern Mediterranean, offering primarily seven-day cruises with a small selection of nine-, 10-, 11-, and 12-day sailings departing from Venice, Italy from May 12 through November 10, 2019. Norwegian Star will call on some of Greece’s most enchanting island destinations including Corfu, Santorini, Mykonos and Cephalonia, as well as the outstanding Adriatic destinations of Kotor, Montenegro and Dubrovnik, Croatia on the glimmering Dalmatian Coast.

Norwegian Spirit will home port in Southampton for the summer of 2019 and sail a selection of 10-day or longer once-in-a-lifetime itineraries journeying to the British Isles, Iceland, Norwegian Fjords, the Arctic Circle, and the Baltics. Full itinerary details will be released when the ship opens for sale in mid-January.

Hawaii
As one of the most sought-after tropical destinations in the world, the islands of Hawaii are best experienced by sea. And Norwegian is the only cruise line that offers a seven-day inter-island itinerary, on the US-flagged Pride of America. Guests will cruise through paradise on a dream vacation with a one-of-a-kind itinerary that offers nearly 100 hours of port time in Hawaii’s main islands, including an overnight in Kahului, Maui; a call in Hilo; Kailua, Kona; an overnight in Nãwiliwili, Kauai; and an afternoon cruising past the breathtaking Nãpali Coast. Norwegian’s Pride of America will depart from Honolulu every Saturday through April 2021.

For additional information on itineraries and fares, visit NCL.com.

Image Courtesy Norwegian Cruise Line

Carnival Corporation Partners with Univision to Launch New Primetime Show–‘La Gran Sorpresa’

Carnival Corporation, the world’s largest leisure travel company, has announced it is partnering with Univision Communications Inc.—the leading media company serving Hispanic America—to develop the first O·C·E·A·N primetime series. The show will air on Sundays at 8 p.m. ET/PT / 7 p.m. CT beginning January 7 on the Univision Network.

‘La Gran Sorpresa’ (The Great Surprise) uses the power of travel to reunite families as they overcome hardships created by illness, separation and other challenges. The one-hour program is hosted by award-winning television personality Poncho de Anda. For the series’ first six episodes, de Anda will be joined by several well-known personalities, including Univision Deportes’ Karina Banda; “Despierta America’s” Franscisca Lachapel and Maity Interiano; and Ligia Uriarte of Univision’s primetime dramedy, “Mi Marido Tiene Familia.”

In its first season, the series surprises a number of families as they sail aboard ships from Carnival Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, and Holland America Line—three of Carnival Corporation’s nine global cruise brands—to exotic destinations including Cozumel (Mexico), Mahogany Bay (Honduras), and Half Moon Cay (Bahamas).

“Based on the exceptionally positive viewing results that exceed all other travel-related shows and the increased interest in cruise vacations our shows continue to generate, we are very excited to partner with Univision on ‘La Gran Sorpresa’ and build on their strong connection with the Hispanic community,” said John Padgett, chief experience and innovation officer for Carnival Corporation. “Showcasing the extraordinary experiences our guests enjoy while on a cruise vacation for a full hour in primetime will position us to significantly expand the awareness of and demand for cruising within a burgeoning demographic that inherently values everything cruise vacations represent – family, friends, culture and fun.”

“We are thrilled to deliver the power of Univision Studios and our beloved personalities to bring ‘La Gran Sorpresa’ to the leading Spanish-language network in the country,” said Steve Mandala, president of advertising sales and marketing, UCI. “Our partnership with Carnival Corporation and its award-winning cruise line brands will further deepen their efforts by engaging Hispanic America with stories that resonate and unite families.”

‘La Gran Sorpresa’ is the seventh Ocean Original series created by Carnival Corporation, the fifth to appear on network or cable TV in the U.S. and the first to engage the growing Hispanic community in the U.S. The new series builds on other Ocean Original series the company has produced that have aired on network and cable TV in the United States, and is part of its focus on expanding awareness of and increasing demand for cruising vacations.

The company currently produces three other travel series that appear weekends on ABC and NBC stations, and rank as number one or number two in their time slot. With cruise vacations growing 20 percent faster than land-based vacations and with more people than ever taking cruise vacations in 2017, the strong ratings are further evidence that Americans’ interest in cruise vacations is growing.

Ocean Original series produced by Carnival Corporation and now in their second season include “Ocean Treks with Jeff Corwin” and “Vacation Creation with Tommy Davidson and Andrea Feczko” on ABC; and “The Voyager with Josh Garcia” on NBC.

Earlier in the fall, the company announced it had created OceanView—the world’s first over the top digital streaming channel from a travel provider for completely free on major digital streaming platforms Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV and Roku. The streaming channel features a slate of more than 100 Ocean Original episodes that includes the company’s four original series that have been broadcast on network and cable TV in the past year, as well as two new direct-to-digital streaming original series, “GO” and “Local Eyes.” OceanView content is also available on more than 80 of the company’s 103 cruise ships.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

MSC Cruises Names MSC Seaside At Star-Studded Ceremony At PortMiami

Captain Scala, Sophia Loren & Pierfrancesco Vago
Cut the Ribbon to Christen MSC Seaside
Last Thursday, MSC Seaside, the ship that follows the sun, was named in a glittering ceremony by international screen legend and Godmother for all MSC Cruises' ships, Sophia Loren. MSC Seaside, already recognized as one of the more innovative cruise ships in the industry, is the second ship to be launched in the past six months by the leading European cruise line as part of its industry-unprecedented 12 new mega-ships that MSC Cruises, the Switzerland-founded and based world's largest privately owned cruise line, will bring into service between 2017 and 2026.

"MSC Seaside's naming embodies a pivotal moment for MSC Cruises and the industry overall. She is the first ship of the fifth new prototype that we have developed since we entered this industry only in 2003, and she introduces a wholly-innovative concept that has already set a new standard for the industry to follow," said Pierfrancesco Vago, MSC Cruises' Executive Chairman. "The distinctive and unique Seaside Class is designed to bring guests closer to the sea to enjoy cruising in warm weather, while pushing the boundaries of maritime and guest-centric technology—the way only a cruise line with over 300 years of maritime tradition could have done."

"MSC Seaside has been designed to spearhead the next phase of our growth in North America, a cornerstone of our global strategy. She will be one of three MSC Cruises ships to homeport in Miami—MSC Seaside, MSC Meraviglia, and MSC Divina, one from each of our newest classes of ship. She marks our ambition to establish a significant presence in North America, after firmly rooting our position as number one cruise brand in Europe and having established a leading presence in other key cruise markets globally," added Mr. Vago.

MSC Cruises also announced a new partnership specifically for MSC Seaside and relevant for the North American market. The new partnership with the Andrea Bocelli Foundation (ABF) where MSC Cruises' guest donations will support ABF's valuable work in Haiti, one of the poorest countries in the world currently facing exceptional challenges. Every dollar donated on board by a guest will go directly to the Foundation to make a real difference, establishing schools that become community centers and launching projects such as the Mobile Clinic, providing health care assistance and prevention, clean water, lighting and agricultural development, transforming the lives of their communities.

Mr. Vago commented on the ABF partnership, "MSC Seaside will sail year around in the Caribbean, and with this partnership we wish to express our commitment to giving something back to the places where we operate. This charitable activity is in fact focused on helping the children of Haiti. They are the future and deserve the best and, as a family-owned company, this is a cause close to our hearts."

To mark the launch of the partnership with ABF, the world-famous tenor Andrea Bocelli took to the stage during the naming ceremony with 30 children from the Voices of Haiti, a talented choir of Haitian school students aged between 6 and 14 that brings music into the schools of the ABF and St. Luke Foundation for Haiti.

"The sea is a place of freedom; it is the guardian of fascinating wonders, of answers that help us grow. Being an artist means being an explorer. It is therefore a particularly joyful opportunity for me to bring on board my singing and most importantly the voices, joy and enthusiasm of the children's choir the 'Voices of Haiti,'" said Andrea Bocelli. "This choir is the result of one of the educational projects carried out, in Haiti and beyond, by the Foundation bearing my name." Mr. Bocelli continued, "MSC Cruises has always supported philanthropic projects and, in line with this tradition, MSC Seaside's naming marks a further inauguration: the launch of the partnership between MSC Cruises and the Andrea Bocelli Foundation. It will therefore be possible to set sail together and to simultaneously begin a compelling adventure of solidarity, of getting to know each other and supporting our important initiatives while on board." In collaboration with the Andrea Bocelli Foundation, the project aims to reach over 2,550 children in five communities in Haiti.

High quality, international dining is one of the key highlights of the MSC Cruises offering for guests and MSC Seaside takes this to the next level with six specialty restaurants featuring concepts from around the globe. One of these is a brand new dining experience from pan-Asian chef and international culinary pioneer, Roy Yamaguchi, with whom MSC Cruises has partnered to create a new Asian-Fusion dining concept, Asian Market Kitchen.

To celebrate the coming into service of MSC Seaside, the Swiss-based global cruise line hosted a high-profile event in PortMiami and paid homage to traditional seafaring customs. Guests in attendance included guests from around the globe, including authorities and key partners from the travel industry, as well as US and global media alongside guests from closer to home.

Headlining the entertainment for the evening's Naming Ceremony was multiple GRAMMY and LATIN GRAMMY winner, Ricky Martin, who is well-known for his high-energy and thrilling performances that have captivated millions of people throughout the world. Beloved by fans worldwide for his instinctive understanding of rhythm, passion for performing, and equal compassion for giving, Ricky Martin truly encompasses the international spirit of MSC Cruises and the city of Miami.

Making a guest appearance at the event was Miami football legend and Hall of Fame quarterback, Dan Marino, who was with the Miami Dolphins for 17 years. Earlier this year, MSC Cruises signed a partnership with the Miami Dolphins and became the official cruise line for the team, further strengthening the cruise line's relationship with the South Florida community—where its US operations are based. Fans and guests will have the chance to experience the Miami Dolphins at sea and meet team alumni on a themed cruise on MSC Seaside in 2018. Marino presented MSC Cruises USA President Roberto Fusaro with a signed football helmet to be displayed on board as a symbol of the partnership.

The finale of the evening's events was the time-honored tradition of breaking a bottle of champagne over the bow of the ship as MSC Seaside was officially named aloud. As a company with a strong maritime heritage dating over 300 years, observing these seafaring traditions is important to MSC Cruises and bringing good luck to this new ship, as always, was Sophia Loren as Godmother to her 12th MSC Cruises ship. As one of the most celebrated Italian actresses of our time, the glamorous screen-legend is practically part of the MSC Cruises family.

In charge of the whole evening's entertainment was actor and popular American TV host, Mario Lopez, who served as the Master of Ceremonies. Lopez also welcomed guests to the star-lit festivities on the "Blue Carpet," where celebrities gave interviews, took photographs, and met the crowds. Lopez then took to the stage to host the evening's entertainment.

But the main star of the show was none other than MSC Seaside. Quite unlike anything else at sea, MSC Seaside will shine among Miami's skyline commanding attention with its revolutionary design. Inspired by the architecture and lifestyle of Miami, the ship will be right at home in warm South Florida waters. Highly-innovative in design as well as on board features, the ship will feature world-class entertainment, a range of international dining concepts, a gorgeous spa, outstanding family-friendly facilities, the private "ship within a ship" MSC Yacht Club, and expansive outdoor spaces. The striking MSC Seaside is just one more reason for guests from North America, and all over the world, to join MSC Cruises on an unforgettable trip that follows the sun. MSC Seaside will sail year-round from Miami to the Caribbean offering 7-night eastern and western Caribbean itineraries, which started December 23.

Image Courtesy MSC Cruises

Friday, December 22, 2017

Celebrity Flora Celebrates Its Next Milestone


The ceremonial keel laying took place for Celebrity Flora in Tolkamer, Netherlands, setting the foundation for the ship's innovative new structure.

A 49.2 ton block was lifted in the air and a lucky coin was placed in the dock before the block was lowered into position. With the solid foundation in place, the building blocks can be joined together to create the ship of the future.

Leaders from both Celebrity Cruises, BG Studios, and DeHoop were at the event to celebrate the next stage of the ships evolution.

Celebrity Flora will sail from Baltra year-round, making her first sailing on May 26, 2019. Visit CelebrityCruises.com/galapagos/ships/celebrity-flora for information about the ship’s alternating seven-night inner and outer loop itineraries.

Image Courtesy Celebrity Cruises

Cruise Lines International Association Releases 2018 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook & Cruise Travel Trends

Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the world’s largest cruise industry trade association, has released the 2018 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook. The report offers an in-depth look at the cruise industry’s overall global economic impact as well as the trends impacting cruise travel in 2018.

Current data shows cruise travel is steadily on the rise with a projected 27.2 million passengers expected to set sail in 2018. In 2017, an estimated 25.8 million passengers cruised compared to a confirmed 24.7 million passengers in 2016, an increase of 20.5 percent over five years from 2011-2016. To meet ongoing demand, more ships are scheduled to set sail in 2018. CLIA Cruise Lines are scheduled to debut 27 new ocean, river and specialty ships this coming year.

“It is without question that the cruise industry continues on a growth trajectory, gaining in consumer interest and creating a positive impact on the global economy,” said Cindy D’Aoust, president and CEO, CLIA. “The 2018 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook is a way for us to keep a finger on the pulse of the global cruise industry and its impact on the global economy and identify new travel trends that will influence cruise travel in the future.”

CLIA is also reporting on the global economic impact of the cruise industry in 2016. Cruise industry expenditures generated $126 billion in total output worldwide, supporting more than one million full-time equivalent employees who earned $41 billion in income, an increase from previous years.

As part of the 2018 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook, CLIA has forecasted the top nine cruise travel trends for the coming year.
1. All Budgets Will Cruise — The soon to be released, 2018 Cruise Travel Report found that almost all income brackets are cruising. In fact, a third (33%) of the cruisers surveyed who have taken a cruise within the past three years, have a household income less than $80K. While the data shows cruising does skew a bit more to the affluent consumer than other types of vacations, the report indicates almost all levels of income enjoy cruise vacations.
2. Transformational Cruise Travel — The next evolution of experiential travel sees travelers taking a step further and seeking “transformational” experiences. From cultural immersion and voluntourism to extreme adventures, those returning from a cruise will have shift in perspective and a sense of accomplishment. Some upcoming cruise itineraries include the opportunity to indulge in local cuisine, guided tours through small villages and even visits inside private homes. Thrill-seekers can fill bucket lists with chances to swim with sharks in South Africa, ride a Harley Davidson in Alaska or mingle among penguins in the Arctic.
3. Sustainability at Sea — In the coming year there with be an even greater focus on sustainable tourism. Travelers can look forward participating in sustainable practices both onboard and off from recycling and waste management to popular voluntourism initiatives that focus on creating a positive environmental and social impact at destinations around the globe.
4. Millennials Take to the River — River and small ship cruising continues to gain traction among travelers, specifically the Millennial set. With ever-expanding itineraries and destination experiences that reach far beyond walking and coach tours and endless options for the perfect “Instagram moment,” the younger generation is embracing river cruising.
5. Skip-Gen Cruising — Multigenerational cruising is projected to increase in popularity, as forecasted by CLIA’s Travel Agent Cruise Industry Outlook in April 2017. But there’s a twist: “skip-generation” trips, with grandparents and grandchildren traveling together without their parents, are predicted to be highly popular in 2018 and beyond.
6. Travelers Warm to Chilly Destinations — The coming year is projected to see an increase in popularity of colder climate destinations including the Baltics, Canada, Alaska, and Antarctica. With an array of unique excursion options, from penguin watching to ice fishing, these winter wonder destinations are drawing in both new and repeat cruise travelers.
7. Healthy Doses — Travelers are seeking health and wellness trips more than ever before and the cruise industry is responding with services and experiences for the mind and body. Today’s cruise travelers can participate in onboard health wellness seminars led by popular health experts, custom fitness programs, stress management, and spa services. There are even entire cruise itineraries dedicated to weight management and healthy living including Weight Watchers cruises and menus for a variety of dietary needs from diabetic-friendly to plant-based.
8. Smart Travel Technology — The coming year there will be a rise in traveler-friendly onboard technologies. Several cruise lines are introducing wearable technology for cruise guests that provide a personalized and seamless experience while onboard. Ranging from keychains to bracelets to necklaces and more, wearable technology on cruises interacts with sensors on the ship in order to do everything from turning the lights on as a cruiser approaches their cabin to acting as a security agent.
9.  Tapping Travel Agents —  Travel agents continue to see a steady demand from consumers in planning and executing vacations. Some of the largest factors behind continued popularity of travel agents? Ease of planning, valued expertise, and affordability.
For the full 2018 State of the Cruise Industry Outlook findings, visit Cruising.org/about-the-industry/research.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Princess Cruises Announces Largest-Ever Fall 2019 Deployment to Canada & New England

Princess Cruises has released the 2019 Canada & New England season, featuring Regal Princess and Caribbean Princess on the cruise line's largest fall deployment and the opportunity to visit Greenland roundtrip from New York aboard Caribbean Princess.

The 2019 Canada & New England program includes three ships with 16 departures, visiting 16 destinations on seven unique itineraries with three late night ports and two overnight ports with access to four UNESCO World Heritage sites.

"In 2019 we bring three of our ships to Canada & New England, for our guests to experience the brilliant colors of fall foliage, famed destinations and landmarks in this region," said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises and Carnival Australia group president.

All 2019 Canada & New England cruises and cruisetours are open for sale. Highlights include:
• NEW 16-day Greenland & Canada voyage round-trip from New York on Caribbean Princess, visiting three ports in Greenland and three ports in Canada
• Seven-day Canada & New England voyages departing on Saturdays from New York on Regal Princess
• More departures than ever of the 10-day Classic Canada & New England voyages, including one in August, out of Quebec and New York on Caribbean Princess, with overnight stays in Quebec and scenic cruising on the St. Lawrence River on every voyage
• Late-night stay in Boston and Saguenay on every Quebec to New York 10-day Classic Canada & New England on Caribbean Princess
• 13-day Canada & Colonial America voyages departing both in summer and fall between Quebec and Ft. Lauderdale on Caribbean Princess, with overnight stays in Quebec
• Five-day Canadian Atlantic Provinces Getaway out of New York on Regal Princess
• Access to the following UNESCO World Heritage Sites: Historic District of Old Quebec, Old Town Lunenburg, Landscape of Grand Pré, and the Statue of Liberty
• NEW 24-day Canada & New England voyage round-trip from London (Southampton) on Sapphire Princess, with an overnight stay in New York and a maiden call to Rockland, Maine
To further enhance guests' cruise vacations, Princess Cruises is pleased to offer a choice of two options on the East Coast to see the sites of colonial America or Niagara Falls and the best of Eastern Canada:
• Historic America Cruisetour takes guests to such important places as Thomas Jefferson's Monticello estate, Colonial Williamsburg, Independence Hall in Philadelphia and the Gettysburg Battlefield.
• The Maple Explorer Cruisetour brings guests to exciting cities like the capital of Ottawa and French-flavored Montreal with guided tours of the Canadian Museum of History, dazzling cathedrals and the historic 19th century Rideau Canal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Guests will also be treated to a lovely cruise through the picturesque Thousand Islands.
Additional information about Princess Cruises is available by visiting Princess.com.

Image Courtesy Princess Cruises

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Carnival Fascination To Undergo Multi-Million-Dollar Dry Dock Prior to Resuming Year-Round Service From San Juan

Carnival Fascination will undergo an extensive multi-million-dollar dry dock that will add a variety of popular food and beverage innovations, including Guy’s Burger Joint developed by Food Network star Guy Fieri, the cocktail pharmacy-themed Alchemy Bar, BlueIguana Cantina Mexican eatery, Cherry on Top sweets shop, the poolside RedFrog Rum Bar and BlueIguana Tequila Bar, and a Bonsai Sushi Express venue.

The spaces will be added during a two-week dry dock taking place Feb. 4-17, 2018, in Freeport, The Bahamas, prior to the ship resuming its year-round schedule of seven-day southern Caribbean cruises from San Juan, Puerto Rico, beginning Feb. 18, 2018. Carnival Fascination is currently being chartered to FEMA to house relief workers in St. Croix.

“We can’t wait for our guests to experience these exciting new features aboard Carnival Fascination when she returns to her year-round homeport of San Juan early next year,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line, adding that other Carnival ships began visiting San Juan as a port of call Nov. 30.

The new options aboard Carnival Fascination include:
• Guy’s Burger Joint: a free-of-charge poolside venue developed in partnership with Food Network personality Guy Fieri serving hand-crafted burgers and fresh-cut fries enjoyed amidst a décor that celebrates the chef’s California roots and love of car culture.
• RedFrog Rum Bar: a poolside watering hole offering the quintessential Caribbean vacation vibe with refreshing Caribbean rum-based frozen drinks and beers, including Carnival’s own private label draught brew, ThirstyFrog Red.
• BlueIguana Cantina: a complimentary poolside Mexican eatery where guests can enjoy authentic freshly made burritos and tacos on homemade tortillas, as well as an elaborate toppings and salsa bar.
• BlueIguana Tequila Bar: a fun and festive outdoor bar offering a laid-back Mexican-themed atmosphere and tequila-based frozen drinks and beers, perfect for chillin’ by the pool.
• Cherry on Top: The “sweetest spot on board,” Cherry on Top is the gateway to the joys of simple indulgences with bins of bulk candy, fun-and-fanciful gifts, just-because novelties, colorful custom apparel and more.
• Alchemy Bar: a vintage-themed cocktail “pharmacy” that’s the go-to spot for guests seeking a unique experience with mixologists who “prescribe” concoctions from different elixirs and ingredients or guests’ own custom-created cocktails.
• Bonsai Sushi Express: the success of the full-service Bonsai Sushi restaurants has spawned this casual, convenient yet equally tasty offshoot featuring a mouth-watering array of sushi, sashimi, rolls and more.
These new options complement popular attractions like a WaterWorks aqua park featuring a 300-foot-long Twister slide, Seuss at Sea operated exclusively with Dr. Seuss Enterprises, and myriad entertainment choices including the Punchliner Comedy Club, Playlist Productions shows, and Hasbro, The Game Show, with larger-than-life adaptations of the company’s iconic games.

Carnival Fascination’s year-round schedule from San Juan encompasses week-long sailings to five Caribbean islands: St. Lucia, Barbados, St. Kitts, St. Thomas and St. Maarten. To learn more about Carnival Cruise Line, visit Carnival.com.

Image Courtesy Carnival Cruise Line

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Princess Cruises Announces 2019 Japan Cruise Program

Princess Cruises announced its 2019 program featuring Japanese-built Diamond Princess returning for her sixth season, sailing roundtrip from Tokyo (Yokohama) and Kobe.

The March-November 2019 season features 60 departures on 40 unique itineraries, visiting 41 destinations in seven countries, more ports than ever before. Offerings include access to 11 UNESCO World Heritage sites and nine late night port calls.

"Japan is a culturally rich country with an abundance of local entertainment, historical sites and culinary experiences for our guests to embrace," said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises and Carnival Australia group president. "Cruising is the best way to explore this island nation and Princess has been recognized the number one international cruise line in Japan."

2019 Deployment Highlights
• Maiden port calls on Diamond Princess to Gamagori, Himeji, Matsuyama, Niigata, Miyako and Takamatsu
• Nine departures during the popular Spring Flowers season, visiting many top cherry blossom and spring flowers sites throughout all of Japan
• Seven departures providing access to some of the most popular summer festivals in Japan including the Aomori Nebuta Festival, Kochi Yosakoi Dance Festival and Akita Kanto Festival
• Three voyages include viewing of the Kumano Grand Fireworks Festival visible from the decks of the Diamond Princess, a display of over 10,000 fireworks
Festival and Event Experiences
• Five voyages with late night stays in Aomori during the Aomori Nebuta Festival, which features Nebuta float figures, traditional music, and many vibrant dancers, easily accessible on foot from the port
• Three voyages providing access to many popular August festivals including Akita Kanto Festival, Kochi Yosakoi Dance Festival and Tokushima Awa Dance Festival featuring late night stays in each city to allow for more exploration:
o Akita Kanto Festival features a procession of 200 bamboo poles with lanterns weighing over 100 pounds carried on the palms, foreheads, shoulders or backs of the celebrants
o Kochi Yosakoi Dance festival is one of Japan's ten largest festivals attracting fans from all across Japan
o Tokushima Awa Dance Festival one of the most famous summer dance festivals, which dates back to the 1500s featuring dancers performing throughout the city well into the night and known for the famous "Fool's Dance"
• Two voyages visiting Japan's northern island of Hokkaido during the Fall Foliage season in October
Additional 2019 Japan Deployment Offerings
• Variety of Southern Islands cruises allowing guests to experience a different climate and culture, with calls to the isles of Okinawa and Ishigaki or Miyakojima, and to Taipei (Keelung), Taiwan
• Multiple Circle Hokkaido cruises including late night stays in Hakodate, home to the Mt. Hakodate cable car with breath-taking views of the city at night
• Nine-day Circle Japan or Sea of Japan voyages circumnavigating the country visiting top-rated cultural ports
• International stops to Taiwan, South Korea, Russia, Hong Kong, Vietnam, and China
Japan Cruisetours
• The Highlights of Japan Cruisetour - includes the main sights in Kyoto and Tokyo. Kyoto, the center of Japanese culture for more than a thousand years, exemplifies the art of Japanese gardens. Guests can enjoy sightseeing at Nijo Castle and the famed Kinkakuji Temple (Golden Pavilion) or immerse themselves in the history of Nara with the Great Buddha of Todaiji Temple and Kasuga Taisha Shrine while en route to the bullet train for Tokyo. After experiencing central Tokyo, explore the UNESCO World Heritage site of Mt. Fuji with stunning views from Togendai and Lake Ashi.
• The Temples & Traditions of Japan Cruisetour - an extended version of Highlights of Japan with two additional nights in the UNESCO Creative City of Kanazawa. This area is rich with Japanese culture and tradition where guests can experience the Higashi Chaya District, a historic Geisha district, as well as Nomura Samurai House. Guests will be introduced to the art of sushi making where they will make their own sushi lunch.
Many meals and an experienced Tour Director are included on both cruisetours.

Additional information about Princess Cruises is available at Princess.com.

Image Courtesy Princess Cruises

Monday, December 18, 2017

Viking Sun Sets Sail On First World Cruise

Viking celebrated the kickoff of its inaugural World Cruise on its fourth and newest ocean ship, Viking Sun last Friday, welcoming guests in Miami for the sold out 141-day itinerary.

Viking Sun will spend nearly the next five months on the World Cruise, which spans five continents, 35 countries and 64 ports. During this journey from Miami to London, guests will first explore Cuba and the Caribbean, before sailing the Panama Canal to call on Los Angeles, the home of Viking's U.S. headquarters and first West Coast port of call. Viking Sun will then sail to the South Pacific, Australia and Asia, where the ship will be christened in Shanghai on March 8, 2018. From there, Viking Sun will continue on with ports of call in Asia and then Europe, before finishing the World Cruise in London on May 5.

"Our World Cruises are the most extensive and culturally immersive journeys available in the industry. For two decades, we have continued to expand our destination-focused itineraries to new regions of the world, so as our fleet grows it is a natural progression for us to offer grand voyages of this scope for our guests," said Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking. "Our guests are experienced travelers who want to explore the world in comfort; our offerings allow them to be immersed be in the cultures of the world when they are onshore and when they are onboard our award-winning fleet of sister ships."

In addition to guests, also sailing on the World Cruise will be six casks of Viking's own "Linje" Aquavit. In keeping with a Norwegian tradition that dates back hundreds of years, the Scandinavian spirit will mature in oak barrels during the sailing, crossing the equator (linje) twice as part of the maturation process. According to the tradition, it is believed that the moving seas and frequent temperature changes cause more flavor to be extracted from the casks.

Viking Sun will continue to sail the globe during Viking's 2019 World Cruise. The recently announced 128-day itinerary from Miami to London, will visit five continents and immerse guests in the rich cultures of 21 countries from South America and the South Pacific to Australia and Africa. Like on all Viking itineraries, World Cruise guests will enjoy a complimentary shore excursion in each of the 64 ports and free unlimited Wi-Fi; they will also receive Business Class airfare and all gratuities and service fees, along with an extensive list of added-value inclusions in their cruise fare.

Viking Sun
Viking's ocean ships have a gross tonnage of 47,800 tons, have 465 staterooms and host 930 guests. The all-veranda Viking Sun is the newest addition to Viking's award-winning ocean fleet, which also includes Viking Star, Viking Sea, and Viking Sky. Viking will welcome two more sister ships in the next two years, including Viking Orion in summer 2018; with the arrival of a sixth ship in 2019, Viking will be the largest small ship ocean cruise line. Two additional ships are also on order for delivery in 2021 and 2022.

Image Courtesy Viking Ocean Cruises

Friday, December 15, 2017

Grand Celebration Sailing Dec 23 with Enhancements; New Second Ship Name and Itinerary

Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line, the only Line with a two-night cruise departing year-round from the Port of Palm Beach, announced this week that Grand Celebration will set sail with several new guest-focused enhancements, including a new adult-only area, a revitalized casino, and specialty coffee and juice bar. The ship will return to its regularly scheduled two-night sailings just in time for the holidays on December 23, 2017 from its homeport in West Palm Beach, Florida. Holiday festivities will abound including an appearance by Santa and a special New Year’s Eve party will ring in 2018.

Since late September, Grand Celebration had been chartered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and was providing housing to first responders and National Guard members who were helping to rebuild the U.S. Virgin Islands following damage caused by Hurricane Irma and Maria.

The company also announced that its new 52,900 gross ton ship, set to arrive in April, will be named Grand Classica and will also sail two-night cruises to Grand Bahama Island. With this second ship, Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line will become the only Line to offer daily departures to the Bahamas from the Port of Palm Beach. The company signed a three-year agreement with the Bahamas to bring both of its ships to Grand Bahama Island for two-night cruises, as well as its signature Cruise & Resort Stay packages.

“We are pleased to have been able to assist those in need in the Caribbean. Now we are ready to return to offering memorable cruises to our guests. We are excited to welcome an even better Grand Celebration back to Palm Beach, just in time for the holidays, with several new spaces for our guests to enjoy,” said Oneil Khosa, chief executive officer of Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line. “We are also looking forward to the arrival of our new ship, Grand Classica, in April, and have strengthened our relationship with The Bahamas by signing a three-year agreement to bring both ships to Grand Bahama Island, thus offering daily arrivals to Grand Bahama Island and giving our guests added convenience to fit their schedules.”

Grand Celebration Enhancements
The 1,900 passenger Grand Celebration will set sail on December 23 with the following upgrades:
• Expanded, Enhanced Casino – For those seeking lady luck at sea, Grand Celebration’s Par-A-Dice Casino has doubled in size, offering more slot machines, video poker and enhanced table games. Nearly 70 of the most popular slot games have been added to the casino, bringing the total number of slots to 125, in addition to several new video poker machines. The casino’s table games area, which include Roulette, Blackjack, Craps, Three Card Poker and the Ultimate Texas Hold ‘Em Poker, have been divided into two comfortable areas and now also include raised maximum betting limits, the ability to make additional wages while playing blackjack, and the addition of electronic roulette machines for those who like to play without a crowd watching.
• New Adult-Only Area – The forward sun deck at the top of the ship has now become The Oasis – a complimentary adult-only area for those ages 18 and over that want to relax and unwind in serenity. The expansive area includes a bar, a large hot tub, all new sun loungers and several outdoor daybeds.
• Specialty Coffee Bar and Juice Bar – Baristas will prepare specialty coffees and offer delectable gelato and pastries at the new Grand Café on Deck 9. Menu items feature a variety of hot or iced specialty coffees, teas and other beverages, including smoothies and freshly squeezed juices. In the morning, guests can indulge in chocolate croissants, Viennese pastries, muffins and quiche. Throughout the day, the Grand Café will offer delectable sweet treats, including delicious homemade gelato, sorbet, cakes, tarts, cupcakes and chocolate truffles.
To celebrate the holidays, Grand Celebration has everything guests need to have a jolly time, with cruises departing every other day, beginning on Saturday, December 23 with sailings on Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve. Special festive holiday menus will be available in the complimentary and specialty restaurants, and holiday decorations will adorn public areas.

Coming in 2018: Grand Classica & Daily Departures
In August, Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line announced that it had signed a 10-year agreement with the Port of Palm Beach and that it had purchased a second ship that will also be based at the Port. The company has named the new ship, Grand Classica. Grand Classica will carry up to 1,680 guests and features 685 staterooms, a multitude of restaurants and bars, a theater, two pools, four hot tubs, wellness center and spa, outdoor jogging track and more.

On November 25, 2017, Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line inked a three-year agreement with the Bahamas to bring both Grand Celebration and Grand Classica to Grand Bahama Island, thereby doubling the number of arrivals beginning in April. At the signing ceremony, Bahamas Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis thanked the line for their confidence in and commitment to Grand Bahama. “Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line is showing great support in Grand Bahama and in the economy going to the extent of launching another vessel in April and this shows great confidence in our Bahamas,” he said.

Grand Classica will be a wonderful addition and complement to Grand Celebration,” said Khosa. “Having two ships sailing to Grand Bahama Island, Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line will be the largest provider of tourism to the island, carrying more than 500,000 passengers annually. It will also give our guests more flexibility and choice.”

Additional details on the new ship, as well as on sale dates, will be announced in early 2018. Grand Classica is expected to begin sailings in mid-April 2018. For additional information, visit BahamasParadiseCruise.com.

Image Courtesy Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line

Carnival Cruise Line is Bringing Island Warmth to Chilly New York City in a 'Scent-Sational' Way

With winter approaching, now is the time for consumers to start thinking about an escape from the cold and begin planning their next Caribbean vacation.

To celebrate the Caribbean’s stunning island destinations and promote the launch of its newest ship, Carnival Horizon, Carnival Cruise Line captured and canned real island air from tropical ports of call and invited New Yorkers to stop and smell the tropics with a truly unique and “scent-sational” experience that took place in Manhattan’s Greeley Square Park.

Carnival brought the magic of a Caribbean cruise to the mainland with an interactive and immersive pop-up activation, featuring a heated tent, a steel drum band, and scents from the islands piped throughout the air. The event’s centerpiece was a vending machine dispensing the chance to win a Carnival cruise and free cans of real island air infused with natural scents unique to each destination. Featured scents included Wild Banana Orchid from Grand Cayman, Puerto Rican Coffee from San Juan, Sugarcane Rum from St. Kitts, Island Coconut from Cozumel, and Ocean Breeze from the sea – all representing the places that Carnival Horizon will be visiting during her Caribbean itineraries.

Carnival designed this activation to give consumers a “whiff” of their next vacation after a recent survey conducted by the cruise line found that 95% of Americans agree that scent can trigger vacation memories and 56% agree that a particular scent has motivated them to plan a vacation.

In conjunction with the New York City promotion, Carnival is hosting a national sweepstakes on its social channels (Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook) through Dec. 16 that asks people to share what scent inspires them to vacation using the hashtag #OpenFun for a chance to win a cruise on the line’s newest ship.

“As winter is fast approaching, now is the time to start thinking about your next vacation,” said Stephanie Esposito, director of digital marketing for Carnival Cruise Line. “Our #OpenFun campaign is designed to promote travel to the Caribbean – the world’s most popular cruising region – by encouraging consumers to stop and smell the tropics, get a ‘scents’ of what a cruise experience might be like, and maybe win a cruise vacation,” she added.

Currently under construction at the Fincantieri shipyard in Marghera, Italy, Carnival Horizon will offer unique features like the first-ever Dr. Seuss-themed water park, the new Smokehouse Brewhouse with traditional downhome BBQ favorites created by Food Network star Guy Fieri along with brewed-on-board craft beers at an onboard brewery, and the line’s first teppanyaki dining venue.

Other innovations include a groundbreaking bike-ride-in-the-sky attraction called SkyRide, an IMAX Theatre, and a suspended ropes course that’s part of the fun-filled SportSquare open-air recreation area. A wide range of accommodations will also be offered, including spa cabins offering exclusive privileges at the Cloud 9 Spa, extra-roomy staterooms in Family Harbor, and tropical-inspired Havana staterooms and suites with exclusive daytime access to a Cuban-themed bar and pool.

Following its inaugural European season, Carnival Horizon will launch a summer schedule of four-day Bermuda and eight-day Caribbean voyages from New York before repositioning to Miami for year-round six- and eight-day Caribbean cruises beginning in September 2018. To learn more about Carnival Cruise Line, visit Carnival.com.

Image Courtesy Carnival Cruise Line

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Crystal River Cruises Unveils Comprehensive New Collection Of Curated Destination Experiences

Crystal River Cruises announced details of its new collection of destination experiences for voyages along Europe's Danube, Rhine and Main rivers. Debuting in 2018, the newly added offerings focus on authenticity and are tailored to travelers' individual interests, featuring smaller group sizes and unique details. Nearly 200 enriching excursions are included, with additional pursuits also available at a cost. The shore-side excursions highlight the multi-faceted character of each destination and comprises five types of experiences including:
• Personal Connections – Those looking to explore the culture of a destination can enjoy a one-of-a-kind tour hosted by local residents, artisans and experts;
• Tantalizing Gastronomy – Guests can relish in the signature culinary styles and specialties of the destination with a variety of dining and hands-on cooking opportunities;
• Cultural Discoveries – Guests will enjoy comprehensive insight from expert guides into historical landmarks, museums, iconic sites and architectural marvels;
• Exhilarating Adventures – Active cruise travelers can participate in a selection of invigorating pursuits that combine historical and cultural experiences;
• Design Your Time – For a more tailored vacation, guests can choose this option, which features a concierge service that designs unique private tours as well as a menu of customized choices.
"Every detail of the Crystal River Cruises' curated destination program has been revamped to focus on choices, and offer more intimate, immersive experiences that perfectly suit travelers' preferences and properly showcase the charm and beauty of the destinations," says Walter Littlejohn, managing director and vice president of Crystal River Cruises. "While each locale offers its own distinct 'can't-miss' experiences, we recognize that every guest brings his or her own distinct style of exploration, and we strive to cater to that individuality."

With many destinations offering more than a dozen choices for shore-side discovery, some of the new experiences featured on voyages in Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Switzerland, Slovenia, Belgium, Netherlands, Hungary, Croatia and Serbia include nearly 200 Inclusive Adventures including:
• Immersive culinary experience in the foodie haven of Rotterdam;
• String & opera performance in a historic Antwerp cathedral;
• A full day exploring Salzburg from Linz;
• Horse show & carriage ride at Lázár Equestrian Park;
• An owner-hosted tasting at Schlagkamp Winery in Cochem;
• Cycle to Veitshochheim Castle and its Rococo Garden in Wurzburg;
• Behind-the-scenes tour of Amsterdam's greenhouses, where the famous tulips are cultivated.
Dozens of Optional Experiences including:
• Vintage photography adventure in Vukovar;
• Hands-on instruction in Linzer torte baking;
• Private home cooking lesson in Kehl;
• Wine tasting in the renowned cellars of Vienna's Palais Coburg;
• Canoe through the romantic canals of Strasbourg;
• Explore Budapest by Trabant Cars;
• Hands-on creativity in one of Novi Sad's last remaining tapestry workshops;
• Horseback riding through the forests of Novi Sad's Fruška Gora National Park.
Each river itinerary will also feature inclusive Signature Events—special events that offer rare access and musical performances in iconic landmarks including Vienna's Belvedere Palace, Linz's St. Florian Monastery, Rüdesheim's Monastery Eberbach, and others.

To ensure that every detail of each experience is in line with Crystal's exacting standards of service, excursion group sizes are limited to no more than 15 guests; for larger groups, guides are available to lead the tours in German, Spanish, Portuguese and other languages upon request. Crystal Collection shore excursions offer guest transport to iconic sites and regions via spacious motor coaches that include free WiFi.

Guests can fully embrace the culture, flavors, history and activities of each destination with the expansive selection offered aboard Crystal Mozart, Crystal Bach, Crystal Mahler, Crystal Debussy, and Crystal Ravel.

By sea, river, land or air, Crystal has redefined the way the world views luxury travel. The world-renowned Crystal Experience—featuring global journeys with Crystal Cruises, Crystal River Cruises, Crystal Yacht Expedition Cruises, Crystal AirCruises and Crystal Air—continues to entice the world's most discerning travelers with incomparable luxury and unparalleled personal service. Crystal will expand its fleet with the upcoming Crystal Debussy and Crystal Ravel river ships, the Crystal Endeavor expedition yacht and an entirely new class of ocean ships over the next five years. For more information, visit CrystalCruises.com.

Image Courtesy Crystal Cruises

Holland America Line’s ms Eurodam Scores 13th Consecutive Perfect Score of 100 on United States Public Health Inspection

For Holland America Line’s ms Eurodam, 13 proved to be a lucky number with the ship recently earning its 13th consecutive perfect score of 100 on a surprise routine United States Public Health (USPH) inspection conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This is the third perfect score for Eurodam in 2017 and continues the six-year run of perfect scores that is still setting records in both company history and the cruise industry.

Eurodam’s unannounced USPH inspection was held Dec. 3, 2017, during a turnaround at Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, at the start of a seven-day Caribbean cruise. This score of 100 follows sister ships Koningsdam and Oosterdam achieving perfect scores in March 2017.

“With each new perfect score Eurodam’s entire team clearly demonstrates their pride and commitment to excellence and to continuing their amazing streak of perfect scores that raises the bar in the industry,” said Orlando Ashford, president of Holland America Line. “Receiving a perfect USPH score on an unannounced inspection is not easy, yet the team on Eurodam certainly makes it look that way year after year. We all know what a tremendous effort it takes to get that 100. Congratulations to everyone on Eurodam.”

Over the past four years, Holland America Line ships have achieved a perfect score of 100 more than 22 times. In addition to Eurodam, ms Koningsdam and ms Oosterdam received perfect scores in March of this year.

CDC inspections are part of the Vessel Sanitation Program, which was introduced in the early 1970s and is required for all passenger ships that call at a U.S. port. The inspections are unannounced and are carried out by officials from the United States Public Health Service twice a year for every cruise ship. Health Canada's Cruise Ship Inspection Program harmonizes with the United States’ CDC Vessel Sanitation Program, and inspections are conducted once a year when cruise ships visit Canadian ports.

The score, on a scale from one to 100, is assigned on the basis of a checklist involving dozens of areas of assessment encompassing hygiene and sanitation of food (from storage to preparation), overall galley cleanliness, water, shipboard personnel and the ship as a whole.

For more information about Holland America Line, visit HollandAmerica.com.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

MSC Cruises Announces Ricky Martin, Andrea Bocelli and More for U.S. Naming Ceremony Celebration

MSC Cruises has announced the line-up for the official launch and Naming Ceremony of MSC Seaside, which will be held on December 21st in PortMiami. As part of the traditional Naming Ceremony that is held for every new ship, MSC will welcome special guests and entertainment, Miami authorities, global media, and key partners from across the travel industry. For this very special Miami launch, MSC Cruises is proud to reveal an international list of celebrated invitees that reflects the Company's European heritage and global presence.

Headlining entertainment for the event will be international superstar, Ricky Martin, who will perform some of his most popular hits. Renowned for bringing Latin music to the forefront of popular music, Ricky Martin is a worldwide star who has recorded in many languages, and truly encompasses the international spirit of MSC Cruises and the city of Miami.

Also taking to the stage will be world-famous tenor, Andrea Bocelli, whose dazzling classical career has taken him all over the world—including performances for four U.S. presidents, three Popes, the British Royal Family, and several Prime Ministers, to name just a few.

Making a guest appearance at the event will be Miami football legend and Hall of Fame quarterback, Dan Marino, who played for the Miami Dolphins for 17 years. MSC Cruises signed a partnership with the Miami Dolphins in October of this year, becoming the official cruise line for the team and further strengthening its relationship with the South Florida community. Fans and guests will have the chance to experience the Miami Dolphins at sea and meet team alumni on a themed cruise aboard MSC Seaside in 2018.

In charge of it all will be actor and popular American TV host, Mario Lopez, who will serve as the Master of Ceremonies for the evening. Lopez will welcome guests to the star-lit festivities on MSC's "Blue Carpet," where celebrities will give interviews, take photographs, and meet the crowds. Lopez will then take to the stage to host the evening's entertainment.

An MSC Cruises' Naming Ceremony would not be complete without the ship's Godmother, Sophia Loren, who has played the leading role in this time-honored tradition since 2003. As one of the most celebrated Italian actresses of our time, the glamorous Sophia Loren will christen the ship with a ribbon-cutting and officially name the spectacular vessel, MSC Seaside.

But the main star of the show will be none other than MSC Seaside. Quite unlike anything else at sea, MSC Seaside will shine among Miami's skyline—commanding attention with its revolutionary design. Inspired by the architecture and lifestyle of Miami, the ship will be right at home in warm South Florida waters. The state-of-the-art ship will offer world-class entertainment, a range of international dining concepts, a gorgeous spa, outstanding facilities for families, a private yacht club (MSC Yacht Club), and expansive outdoor spaces. The striking MSC Seaside is just one more reason for guests all over the world to join MSC Cruises on an unforgettable trip that follows the sun.

Image Courtesy MSC Cruises

Leave No Sight Unseen: Celebrity Cruises Unveils New Sailings for Upcoming 2019-20 Season


Celebrity Cruises continues to open up the world with the continent-spanning unveiling of the brand’s new sailings to some of the most dynamic ports across the globe. With more sailings to iconic locales in Asia, including India and Dubai, Australia, and North, South, and Central America, there’s an option for anyone and everyone onboard Celebrity’s fleet. This reveal wraps up Celebrity’s 2019-20 deployment announcements, reaching a tally of more than 300 destinations in over 70 countries across the world, including more than 160 exciting overnights, plus over 20 double-overnight stays in nearly 40 cities, making 2019-20 one of Celebrity’s richest seasons yet.

Celebrity Constellation
For the 2019-20 season, Celebrity has the entire continent of Asia covered, from the deserts of Dubai to the jungles of Vietnam—and every awe-inspiring locale in between.

Celebrity Constellation, now departing from the ultra-luxurious city of Dubai, will retrace the ancient Spice Route all the way to Singapore on Celebrity’s own Best of India and Sri Lanka itinerary, stopping along the way in iconic ports of Goa, India; Mumbai, India; Colombo, Sri Lanka, and more. From Mumbai, where Celebrity offers an overnight stay, guests can take advantage of the brand’s heralded Multi-Day Adventures excursion to the iconic Taj Mahal in Agra—a fully guided land journey that’s a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Celebrity Eclipse
The stunning Celebrity Eclipse will once again return to South America for the 2019-20 season, visiting nearly 30 incredible destinations in 11 different countries—with more overnight stays that allow guests to linger longer in some of the region’s most dynamic cities. Guests can cross some amazing destinations off their bucket-list, like Buenos Aires, Argentina; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and even the tip of Antarctica. They can explore the iconic Iguazu Falls, marvel at the towering Osorno Volcano, soak up the sun on the beaches of Ipanema, and follow in paths of great explorers as they sail around Cape Horn.

Nothing says “vacation” like sailing from one gorgeous Hawaiian paradise to the next—with the best premium cruise line in the industry—so, in 2019-20, Celebrity Eclipse will visit Hawaii, offering 10- to 12-night sailings between Vancouver and Honolulu, plus a 15-night round-trip sailing from Los Angeles.

Celebrity Infinity
No bucket list is complete without a Panama Canal crossing. Experiencing this feat of engineering is a must for every world traveler, so for Celebrity’s 2019 season, the brand is once again offering two 15-night, canal-traversing vacations sailing between Ft. Lauderdale and San Diego aboard the stunning Celebrity Infinity.

Not only will guests experience what it’s like to travel through the original locks of the Panama Canal, connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, but they will also get to discover an array of breathtaking, tropical destinations along the way. Visit the captivating beaches of Cabo San Lucas, marvel at the colorful colonial architecture of Cartagena, and hike the thriving rainforests of Costa Rica—all on one incredible Celebrity vacation—with a wide variety of in-depth shore excursions to help make the most of every destination.

Celebrity Millennium
In 2019-20, Celebrity Millennium will offer eye-opening vacations throughout the Far East and Southeast Asia, with an array of sailings departing from Tokyo, Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Singapore—with more sailings that immerse guests in the Land of the Rising Sun, Japan. Celebrity Millennium’s Southeast Asia itineraries will visit bucket-list destinations, like Bangkok, Hanoi, and Taipei.

Fresh from her multi-million-dollar revitalization, part of the Celebrity Revolution, Celebrity Millennium returns to Asia. Completely redesigned staterooms will make unwinding after a day of adventure easier than ever, and dazzlingly renovated public venues will be the perfect complement to the exciting destinations guests will visit.

Celebrity Solstice
Back by popular demand, Celebrity Solstice returns to Australia and New Zealand in 2019-20, visiting more than 30 over-the-top destinations Down Under, now with more overnight stays in more cities and more stays of longer than 12 hours, and a brand-new port of call – the charming southeast seaside town of Eden, Australia.

Celebrity will continue to visit some of Australia and New Zealand’s most sought-after destinations, including Wellington, Tauranga, Milford Sound, Sydney, Cairns, Melbourne, and more, while also bringing back the incredibly popular Great Barrier Reef itinerary that gives guests the opportunity to explore the largest coral reef system in the world.

In 2019-20, Celebrity Solstice will also visit the gorgeous islands of Hawaii, offering 10-night sailings between Vancouver and Honolulu. With overnight stays in both Oahu and Maui and visits to both sides of the Big Island, Celebrity’s Hawaii vacations give guests time to do as much (or as little) as they’d like, from laid-back days on a postcard-perfect beach to adventurous hikes through lush tropical rainforests.

To learn more and book, visit CelebrityCruises.com.

Image Courtesy Celebrity Cruises

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Holland America Line Celebrates a Milestone for Newbuild Nieuw Statendam

In anticipation of the upcoming float-out of ms Nieuw Statendam, Holland America Line held the ship’s coin ceremony last week at Fincantieri’s Marghera shipyard in Italy. Following Italian shipbuilding tradition, Anne Marie Bartels, a member of Holland America Line’s esteemed President’s Club, served as the ship’s Madrina and participated in the festivities.

During the coin ceremony, observed to bring good fortune, a Dutch guilder was welded to the forward mast of the ship by Bartels; Antonio Quintano, director of the Fincantieri Marghera Shipyard; and Keith Taylor, executive vice president, fleet operations for Holland America Group, followed by speeches and a blessing by the shipyard chaplain. Cyril Tatar, Holland America Group’s vice president of newbuilding services, also was in attendance. The Dutch Guilder brings sentiment and history to the newbuild—it is from 1898, the year Holland America Line’s first Statendam came into service.

“The coin ceremony is one of the most time-honored traditions in the building of a ship, and having Anne Marie, one of our most valued guests, serve as Madrina makes the celebration all the more special,” said Orlando Ashford, president of Holland America Line. “Nieuw Statendam reflects the next generation in our brand evolution while maintaining the classic hallmarks we are known for. By placing an authentic Dutch guilder in the hull from the year our first ship named Statendam came into service is a meaningful way to build that bridge from our past to our future.”

Bartels first sailed with Holland America Line on the s.s. Nieuw Amsterdam from Rotterdam, the Netherlands, to New York, New York, when she was 21 years old. She has since been on 79 Holland America Line cruises, including 12 Grand Voyages. Bartels has more than 2,500 cruising days with the line, which gives her elite President’s Club status for guests with more than 2,500 days on board.

During the festivities a drydock gate was opened briefly and water touched Nieuw Statendam’s hull for the first time as is tradition during the coin ceremony. On December 21, 2017, the ship will be fully floated out and move to an outfitting pier.

Nieuw Statendam is the second Pinnacle Class ship for Holland America Line, joining ms Koningsdam, which launched in April 2016 from the same shipyard in Marghera. A third Pinnacle Class ship will set sail for the cruise line in 2021.

The 99,500-ton ship will reflect the ongoing evolution of Holland America Line. While much of the ship’s design will be similar to Koningsdam, Nieuw Statendam will have exclusive public spaces and its own style created by leading hospitality designer Adam D. Tihany and designer and architect Bjorn Storbraaten. The ship will carry 2,660 guests and feature all of the hallmarks of Pinnacle-class design: grand light-filled spaces; visual drama; and sumptuous interiors inspired by the fluid curves of musical instruments.

Holland America Line’s first ship to be called Statendam sailed in 1898, and this will be the sixth ship in the company’s history to carry the name. In combining the Dutch word for “new” with the classic “Statendam,” Holland America Line is celebrating the company’s past, present and future.

Image Courtesy of Holland America Line

Monday, December 11, 2017

Carnival Cruise Line To Bring Newer, Larger Ship to Charleston

Carnival Cruise Line will position a newer, larger ship to Charleston when the 3,002-passenger Carnival Sunshine kicks off a year-round schedule of four- and five-day cruises in May 2019.

Carnival Sunshine provides an exciting new vacation choice from Charleston and features one of the widest arrays of food, beverage and entertainment options within the Carnival fleet, including spectacular open-air attractions like the WaterWorks aqua park and SportSquare recreation area, a stunning three-deck-high adults-only retreat featuring a waterfall and adjoining pool, several specialty restaurants and more than 550 staterooms with private balconies.

“With its convenient location and strong tourism appeal, Charleston is one of our most popular homeports and we’re delighted to build upon this success with the deployment of Carnival Sunshine,” Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “Carnival Sunshine not only provides guests sailing from Charleston with a newer, larger ship with so much to see and do but also underscores our commitment to our year-round operations from this port,” she added.

Added Jim Newsome, South Carolina Ports Authority (SCPA) president and CEO, “The decision by Carnival Cruise Line to homeport the Carnival Sunshine in Charleston is an important affirmation of their success and commitment to operations in Charleston. SCPA’s cruise business is an important part of our maritime commerce mission and diversification of business segments. The Port succeeds through having world-class brands, such as Carnival Cruise Line, as its direct customers and looks forward to continuing this productive relationship.”

Carnival Sunshine will kick off its four- and five-day cruise program from Charleston May 18, 2019, and is expected to carry approximately 220,000 passengers annually from that port. Four-day cruises will visit the Bahamian capital of Nassau while five-day voyages will feature Nassau and the private Bahamian island of Half Moon Cay. Each of these destinations offers world-class beaches and excellent water sports opportunities, including kayaking, paddle-boarding and snorkeling.

Guests sailing aboard Carnival Sunshine can enjoy a tantalizing array of food and beverage choices, including Ji Ji Asian Kitchen with an extensive menu of Far East favorites, Havana Bar offering refreshing Cuban cocktails and live Latin music, the cocktail pharmacy-themed Alchemy Bar, the Caribbean-inspired RedFrog Pub, Cucina del Capitano family-style Italian restaurant, and Guy’s Burger Joint developed in tandem with Food Network star Guy Fieri.

The ship’s family-friendly options include Seuss at Sea operated exclusively with Dr. Seuss Enterprises, Hasbro, The Game Show with larger-than-life adaptations of the company’s iconic games, and complimentary children’s programs for kids in three age groups. Entertainment and activity choices are just as varied with high-tech Playlist Productions revues, the Punchliner Comedy Club offering adults-only and family-friendly performances, legendary deck parties and live musical performances throughout the ship.

Top-deck attractions include WaterWorks highlighted by Speedway Splash with its dual-racing slides, SportSquare with a suspended ropes course offering breathtaking views to the sea 150 feet below, a miniature golf course, and a three-deck-high Serenity adults-only retreat with oversized umbrellas, and comfortable chaise lounges and chairs, as well as a waterfall and its own pool.

In addition to the short cruise program from Charleston, Carnival Sunshine will operate an 11-day Carnival Journeys cruise round-trip from Charleston Dec. 3-14, 2019, calling at St. Thomas, Aruba, Bonaire, Grand Turk and Half Moon Cay. In addition to visiting spectacular destinations, the longer-length Carnival Journeys cruises offer unique on-board experiences where guests can enjoy local cuisine, entertainment and cultural opportunities within the various ports of call. Activities focusing on topics such as photography, cooking and arts and crafts and a 1980s-themed “Throwback Sea Day” will be offered, as well.

Carnival Ecstasy, which currently sails from Charleston, will shift to Jacksonville, Fla., to operate year-round four- and five-day cruises beginning in May 2019. Carnival Elation, currently based in Jacksonville, will reposition to Port Canaveral, Fla., in May 2019, as well, to operate a new schedule of four- and five-day voyages, providing an exciting new vacation option from the Space Coast.

Image Courtesy of Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival Ecstasy to Launch Year-round Cruises from Jacksonville in 2019

Carnival Cruise Line’s 2,056-passenger Carnival Ecstasy will launch year-round four- and five-day cruises from Jacksonville, Florida, beginning in May 2019.

The 2,056-passenger Carnival Ecstasy will assume the Carnival Elation’s popular year-round four- and five-day cruise program beginning May 16, 2019. Carnival is the only cruise operator offering year-round departures from Jacksonville, carrying approximately 170,000 passengers a year. The convenient, value-packed voyages include day-long visits to tropical destinations throughout The Bahamas, including Freeport, Nassau, Half Moon Cay and the private destination of Princess Cays.

“With its convenient and centralized location, Jacksonville has been a popular homeport for Carnival for more than a decade and Carnival Ecstasy is a wonderful addition to this market while providing a fresh new option on these attractive, value-packed four- and five-day Bahamas cruises,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line.

“We are certainly pleased with Carnival’s continued support for our strong cruise business and look forward to welcoming Ecstasy to JAXPORT in 2019,” said JAXPORT CEO Eric Green.

Carnival Ecstasy
underwent an extensive multi-million-dollar renovation earlier this year that added popular features like Guy’s Burger Joint developed in tandem with Food Network star Guy Fieri, the cocktail pharmacy-themed Alchemy Bar, BlueIguana Cantina offering authentic Mexican fare and Cherry on Top, the “sweetest spot on board” offering bulk candies, fanciful gifts, apparel and more.

Carnival Elation, currently based in Jacksonville, will reposition to Port Canaveral, Florida, in May 2019.

Image Courtesy of Carnival Cruise Line

Port Canaveral to Host Carnival Elation

Port Canaveral will be the homeport for Carnival Cruise Line’s Carnival Elation as they launch a new year-round schedule of four- and five-day cruises beginning May 12, 2019. Carnival announced that the newly renovated ship will encompass four-day “long weekend” cruises departing Thursdays to Freeport and Nassau and five-day voyages departing Mondays and Saturdays to Amber Cove and Grand Turk.

“Port Canaveral is proud of its partnership with Carnival Cruise Line and we look forward to welcoming Carnival Elation in 2019,” said Port CEO Capt. John Murray. “The announcement is another endorsement that our ongoing investments in state-of-the-art terminals and commitment to excellence in cruise operations continues to earn the confidence of some of the world’s most successful cruise brands.”

“We’re delighted to enhance our short cruise offerings from Port Canaveral with Carnival Elation, which emerged from dry dock better than ever with a host of food, beverage and entertainment options that our guests are sure to enjoy,” said Christine Duffy, President of Carnival Cruise Line.

According to Carnival, the 2,130 passenger Carnival Elation recently underwent a massive makeover that included the addition of an expansive new WaterWorks aqua park, 38 new cabins, 98 balconies to existing staterooms, and a variety of exciting food and beverage concepts. These include Guy’s Burger Joint, the poolside RedFrog Rum Bar and BlueIguana Tequila Bar, Cherry on Top, a new Camp Ocean children’s play area, and a new miniature golf course. All staterooms were also renovated to include island-inspired interiors inspired by Carnival Elation’s tropical itineraries.

Image © Linda Coffman, CruiseDiva.com