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News from the world of cruising ~
March 19-25, 2001

Holland America Line to Add Seabourn Sun to its Fleet in Spring 2002

SEATTLE, March 23 -- Holland America Line announced today that it will receive the legendary Seabourn Sun in a transfer from sister company Seabourn Cruise Line, both units of Carnival Corporation (NYSE: CCL - news). The 758-passenger ship will join Holland America's fleet on April 23, 2002, following Seabourn's world cruise program. ``Holland America sees great potential for this ship to meet the increasing need for longer, more exotic itineraries for our guests,'' said David A. Giersdorf, senior vice president, marketing and sales. ``As the leader in premium cruising, we offer extensive worldwide cruises and this ship will contribute to our ability to feature an even greater diversity of sailings in the world's most intriguing cruise markets.

``The Seabourn Sun already has the public spaces and configurations that we consider to be hallmarks of the Holland America brand,'' added Giersdorf. ``She is a perfect fit. Following a five-week drydock, there will be a seamless transition to our fleet and operation of the vessel.''

Built in 1988 by Wartsila Marine Industries as the former Royal Viking Sun, the revered Seabourn Sun is one of the most spacious ships in the industry. Ninety-three percent of the 383 staterooms have an ocean view and 40% of those offer private verandahs. The 38,000-ton, 669-foot vessel features eight passenger decks plus 15 public rooms and boutiques.

Upon joining the Holland America fleet, all public rooms will be renamed to reflect the Holland America tradition and cabin categories will be defined in accordance with the company's current approach fleetwide. Among Holland America's classic Dutch art and ambiance, passengers will discover an Explorer's Lounge, Crow's Nest, Java Cafe, Rotterdam Dining room, an Italian alternative restaurant, and other familiar features known to the Holland America guest.

The ship also includes a full spa and fitness center, Internet center, outside pools, wrap-around promenade deck for walking and jogging, theater, show lounge, library, Lido restaurant, and several public lounges. Giersdorf noted that the ship has a well established reputation for exploring the world and that initial cruising areas in 2002 and 2003 will include Northern Europe, the Mediterranean, Africa, Asia and the Pacific. Itineraries typically will feature cruises of 14 days or longer with guests coming from the company's more traveled alumni, previous guests aboard the Seabourn Sun and experienced cruisers worldwide.

Holland America plans to rename and introduce the newly refurbished ship to travel agents and consumers along the East Coast of the United States following drydock. It then will embark on its maiden voyage from New York to Europe in early June 2002.

About Holland America Line

Holland America Line, with a fleet of 11 cruise ships sailing to more than 250 worldwide destinations, is a member of the exclusive World's Leading Cruise Lines alliance, which also includes Carnival Cruise Lines, Cunard Line, Seabourn Cruise Line, Costa Cruises and Windstar Cruises. Together, these member lines share a commitment to quality and value, offering cruise vacations that appeal to the widest range of lifestyles and budgets and sail to some of the world's most exciting destinations.

Holland America Line is the highest-rated premium cruise line in the world in both the 2000 ``Travel & Leisure'' magazine ``World's Best'' Awards and the ``Conde Nast Traveler'' Readers' Choice Awards. The company also has won its ninth consecutive ``Best Overall Cruise Value'' award from the World Ocean & Cruise Liner Society (WOCLS).

For more information, consult a professional travel agent, call 1-877-SAIL-HAL (877-724-5425) or visit

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Seabourn Sun to Join Holland America Line Fleet
Seabourn Cruise Line Further Refines Its Focus on Yacht-Style Cruisers

MIAMI, March 23 -- In a move further refining Seabourn Cruise Line's focus on the unique, yacht-like ships which comprise the core of its vacation product, the company has announced that its larger, global cruising vessel, Seabourn Sun, will be reassigned to join the fleet of Holland America Line after she completes her around-the-world voyage in April 2002.

The announcement was made today by Richard Meadows, CTC, Seabourn's Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing, who stated, ``Seabourn Sun has been very popular with vacationers partial to a somewhat larger vessel and more lengthy voyages. She provides an exceptional experience on a midsize vessel, and while that is a great cruise product, it differs from the style of cruising which Seabourn pioneered and in which the company continues to excel.

``Clearly Seabourn has become synonymous with small ship, ultra luxury cruising. We are renowned for the unparalleled service provided to guests on our intimate ships, and now our total focus will be on the exclusive customized experience that we deliver aboard the yachts of Seabourn.''

The decision is another step in an aggressive initiative that was recently announced for the brand. ``Seabourn Refined'' is a major shipboard enhancement program for the line's yacht cruisers Seabourn Pride, Spirit and Legend and Seabourn Goddess I & II. In that announcement, the line said it was mounting an unprecedented commitment aimed at assuring that Seabourn's ``yacht-like'' cruising style continues to be the finest available.

Seabourn will continue to operate the 38,000-ton liner, which accommodates 758 guests, on her previously published schedule throughout the balance of 2001. Included are many of her most popular cruising regions: the Mediterranean; Western Europe; Scandinavia and Russia; Canada/New England and autumn and early winter cruises in the Caribbean. Then the ship, which features extensive golf facilities, an expansive spa and fine dining in a single-seating restaurant, will continue to sail as Seabourn Sun through her 103-day World Cruise commencing in January and ending in April 2002.

``This will be the final season of sailings of this wonderful ship under the Seabourn banner,'' noted Meadows. ``We expect heavy demand from loyal Sun guests and those enthusiasts and cruise buffs seeking an historic voyage. We can assure them that Seabourn Sun will continue to provide an exceptional luxury cruise experience during this time.''

Seabourn is an ultra luxury cruise line with stylish vessels. The Seabourn fleet includes Seabourn Sun, Seabourn Pride, Spirit and Legend and the Seabourn Goddess I & II. Seabourn Cruise Line is a member of the exclusive World's Leading Cruise Lines alliance, which also includes Carnival Cruise Lines, Cunard Line, Holland America Line, Costa Cruises and Windstar Cruises. Together, these member lines share a commitment to quality and value, offering cruise vacations that appeal to a wide range of lifestyles and budgets and sail to some of the world's most exciting destinations.

SOURCE: Seabourn Cruise Line

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The "Last Frontier'' is proving to be the first in popularity for
Crystal Cruises travelers

LOS ANGELES, CA  March 22 -- According to the results of Crystal Cruises' 2000 post-cruise survey of more than 19,000 of its cruise guests, the luxury line's shore tours in Alaska earned the highest ratings of its worldwide programs. Based on the feedback, Crystal has charted its 2001 summer season with 40 diverse expeditions, repeating the top 10 highest rated tours of 2000. Challenging hikes, helicopter flightseeing, kayaking, river rafting, sportfishing and dog sledding offer travelers exhilarating choices.

"All of our excursions in other destinations win high marks from our guests, but the Alaska tours consistently rate above all others. This is particularly noteworthy given that our summer Alaska cruises carry guests of such a wide age range, from young children to seniors, and of varying fitness levels,'' says Adam Leavitt, Crystal Cruises' senior vice president, marketing. "Obviously, we've assembled a winning choice of touring options that capture the enthusiasm of travelers from multiple generations with different interests.''

On eight 12-day cruises from May through August, Six-Star Crystal Harmony will cruise round-trip from San Francisco for Victoria and Vancouver, British Columbia, through the Inside Passage to the Alaskan ports of Ketchikan, Sitka, Juneau and Skagway and, depending on the itinerary, Glacier Bay or Hubbard Glacier. Cruise fares start at $2,660 per person, double occupancy.

According to the 2000 survey, Crystal's top 10 highest-rated tours (and repeated in 2001) are: 

#1 -  Helicopter Glacier Trek (Juneau)  Designed for the mountaineer as well as the photo buff, this excursion offers rare glimpses of glacial moraines, crevasses, ice tubes and seracs, and comes complete with climbing boots, a harness and ice axe for the full glacier experience.

#2 -  Hike and Float the Chilkoot Trail (Juneau)  This voyage retraces the steps of gold-hungry stampeders from a century ago at the historic Gold Rush town of Dyea, at the base of the Chilkoot Trail.  The steep, two-mile trek of Chilkoot brings hikers to the shores of the Taiya River, where after a tempting repast, a river guide takes them on a scenic, 40-minute river float back to town.

#3 -  Pilot's Choice Glacier Explorer by Helicopter (Juneau) Named appropriately, in this tour, the pilot takes passengers to favorite hidden spots, venturing away from the typical routes.   Discovering the enormity of the Juneau Ice Fields, the pilot flies over a variety of glaciers and an expanse of habitat, making two landings for an up-close investigation of the frozen terrain.

#4 -  Mendenhall Glacier Helicopter Adventure (Juneau)  Here, spectators will see this 12-mile river of ice that is Alaska's most photographed glacier, with cliffs towering 200 feet featuring distinctive blue coloring.

#5 -  Champagne & Glaciers by Helicopter (Juneau)  A romantic retreat, guests will see alpine meadows, ice falls, floating glaciers and be served champagne and strawberries atop the Juneau Ice Field.

#6 -  Tatoosh Island Sea Kayaking Adventure (Ketchikan)  The adventure begins as hulled inflatable boats take shipboard guests away from civilization to the remote Tatoosh Islands. At the beach, guests paddle leisurely on double sea kayaks, learning the natural and cultural history of the Tongass National Forest, full of bald eagles, seals, sea lions and vegetation.

#7 -  Chilkoot Trail and Glacier Helicopter Flightseeing (Skagway) This flight combines the thrill of the Gold Rush with the awe of the glaciers.  Passengers soar above the town, once home to 20,000 prospectors; the Chilkoot Trail, which is the gateway to the Klondike Gold Fields; and the rugged expanse of the Valley of the Glaciers, where they will land for a walk donning glacier boots.

#8 -  Taku Glacier Lodge by Floatplane (Juneau)  Accessible only by floatplane or a small river boat, this lodge is noted for its idyllic setting, breathtaking views and honey-baked salmon.

#9 -  Misty Fjords Seaplane Exploration (Ketchikan)  This showcases the dramatic beauty of the Misty Fjords National Monument, a 2-million acre wilderness of twisting fjords, crystalline lakes, 1,000-foot waterfalls and granite cliffs. 

#10 -  Historical Sitka and Nature Walk (Sitka)  Travelers will set foot with a local guide to be immersed in the fascinating history of this district that was once that capital of Russian America.  Russian cathedrals, Totem Square, Victorian-style homes, and Southeast Alaska's forest, plant, bird and wildlife highlight this educational odyssey.

Other intriguing adventures include rainforest nature walks, mountain biking, sportfishing, wilderness safaris, birdwatching, scenic railway and motorcoach tours, streetcar rides, horseback riding and viewing the eagle preserve by jet boat.

Crystal Harmony is an elegant and spacious resort from which to witness the breathtaking glaciers and unspoiled Alaskan landscape. At 50,000 tons, carrying only 940 guests, she features expansive decks, richly appointed staterooms, full-service fitness facility, Computer University@Sea, Caesars Palace at Sea casino, a lavish spa adhering to the principles of feng shui, expansive decks, two pools, award-winning cuisine and entertainment.

Crystal Harmony and her sister ship Crystal Symphony are operated by Crystal Cruises, winners of the travel industry's most distinguished hospitality awards and guide book ratings. For the fifth consecutive year, Crystal Cruises was named best large-ship line in the 2000 readers' surveys conducted by Conde Nast Traveler and Travel + Leisure magazines. 

In addition to Alaska, Crystal Cruises' destinations for 2001 and 2002 include Western Europe, Mediterranean, South America, Caribbean/Panama Canal, Africa, Asia, South Pacific, Mexican Riviera as well as the Grand Pacific Circle 100-day World Cruise. Crystal Cruises is booked exclusively through travel agents. For a complimentary brochure, call your travel professional.

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U.S. Coast Guard and Cruise Industry To Hold Workshop on
Cruise Ship Emergency Response Procedures 

Arlington, VA (March 22, 2001) – The U.S. Coast Guard and the International Council of Cruise Lines (ICCL) have scheduled a cruise ship emergency response planning workshop for March 26 & 27, in Jacksonville, Florida. This is the largest workshop on cruise ship emergency response procedures ever held.
     Workshop attendees will examine the numerous issues relating to passenger and crew safety in the event of an incident that would require total evacuation of a cruise ship while at sea. Discussion topics will include:

  • Search and rescue issues relating to a large number of passengers and crew abandoning a cruise ship.

  • Shoreside and at-sea response and coordination.

  • Inter-agency cooperation and communications.

  • Passenger considerations

The U.S. Coast Guard and the ICCL organized the workshop to review Coast Guard and
cruise industry cooperation and preparations for the unlikely event of a major incident at sea.
      According to Admiral James T. Loy, Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, "The challenge facing us, and the appropriate focus of the workshop is evaluating the systems we each have, to prevent or respond to a major passenger vessel incident at sea."
      This meeting is the first step in a long-term planning process that addresses a large scale emergency response to a simulated cruise ship incident. This process will eventually result in a cruise ship emergency response exercise at sea utilizing U.S. Coast Guard personnel and an ICCL member vessel.
      "Over sixty million people have traveled safely on cruise ships over the past two decades," said Michael Crye, president of the ICCL. "This workshop is an example of the cruise industry's continued commitment to passenger safety."
      More than 100 attendees representing various aspects of maritime search and rescue and cruise ship operations are expected to attend the workshop. Participants include representatives from:

  • The UK Maritime and Coast Guard Agency

  • The United States Coast Guard

  • The Canadian Coast Guard

  • ICCL, its member cruise lines, and other cruise vessel operators

WHEN: March 26 & 27, 2001
     WHERE:  Adams Mark Hotel, Jacksonville, Florida

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Celebrity Cruises Again Ranks Among Elite
In AOL Cruise Critics' 'Cruisers' Choice' Poll

MIAMI, March 22 -- Celebrity Cruises took top honors in America Online (AOL) Cruise Critic's annual "Cruisers' Choice" poll, with three Celebrity ships -- Century, Galaxy and the new Millennium -- ranking among the top 10 ships in the world. 

Celebrity Cruises also captured several of the top 10 rankings in the categories of Best Food, Best Fitness and Recreation Programs, Best Overall Service, Best Value for Price, and Best Cabins. 

"Celebrity Cruises prides itself on its stunning ships, which are the platform for vacation experiences that consistently deliver extraordinary gourmet cuisine, impeccable service and luxurious amenities," said Celebrity Cruises President Rick Sasso. "It's a pleasure when knowledgeable cruise enthusiasts such as those participating in the AOL Cruise Critic poll recognize us for exceeding their expectations." 

Consistently honored for its cuisine created by renowned Master Chef Michel Roux, Celebrity Cruises represented nearly half of the top 10 ships noted for offering the best cuisine, with Century, Mercury, Horizon, and Galaxy. 

Similarly, Celebrity's revitalizing AquaSpa(SM) facilities inspired cruisers to rank Millennium, Mercury, Galaxy and Century among the top 10 in the category of "Best Fitness and Recreation Programs." 

The poll's "Best Value for Price" category honored Celebrity's Century, Galaxy and Mercury. Century also ranked among the top 10 for "Best Cabins" and "Best Overall Service." 

Celebrity Cruises is the highest-rated premium cruise line in the industry and has the youngest fleet of any major cruise line. Celebrity's eighth ship, Summit, launches this fall, and an additional Millennium-class ship will make its maiden voyage in 2002. For more information, visit the Celebrity web site at

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Explore Rainforests, Rituals and Rios During Winter 2001/2002
With Delta Queen Coastal Voyages

NEW ORLEANS, March 22 -- The call of exotic birds deep in the rainforest, the majesty of a smoldering volcano and the lore of 17th-century pirate Henry Morgan highlight Delta Queen Coastal Voyages' inaugural winter itinerary to Costa Rica and Panama. The 10-night "Rainforest, Rituals and Rios" vacations begin Dec. 19, 2001, aboard the newly built yet classically designed, 224-passenger cv Cape May Light.

Passengers can get a bird's-eye view from an aerial tram in the jungle, wander through an aromatic coffee plantation and learn about banana harvesting. The exotic Kuna and Embera Indians will share their hospitality in their jungle villages, affording invaluable cultural exchanges. Then there's a transit of the Eighth Wonder of the World, the Panama Canal.

The tropical ports on the Rainforest, Rituals and Rios coastal cruise vacations include: 

San Jose, Costa Rica -- Passengers will travel through coffee and strawberry fields dotted with tiny villages enroute to the Poas National Park to experience vistas of misty mountains and an active volcano. A trek through the cloud forest past emerald lagoons, lofty peaks and undulating fields gives way to a nature preserve, home to brightly colored birds and jungle creatures. Later, passengers can join local residents, fondly known as "Ticos," for a traditional Costa Rican festival featuring home-cooked foods, regional dances and the warmth of the people. 

San Jose and Limon, Costa Rica -- During the late 19th century, San Jose was home to the arts, and this voyage of discovery will lead to the treasures housed there -- the National Museum, ensconced in an imposing fortress; the National Theatre and the impressive pre-Colombian gold exhibit. Later, passengers journey to one of nature's most mysterious spots -- the Brauilio Carrillo Rainforest -- where an aerial tram will carry them past fragrant, sweet hanging gardens which inhabit this part of the world. Afterward, the travelers descend through valleys bursting with bananas, cocoa plants and pineapple trees to the picturesque port where the crew of their coastal ship welcomes them. 

Bocas del Toro, Panama -- The lush jungles, remote rainforests and pristine coastline caught Columbus' eye when he arrived here in 1502. From Isla Colon (Columbus' Island), Cape May Light passengers will glide through sparkling waters, admiring the coastal scenery punctuated by regal mountains and typical towns, such as Changuinola, where the locals are observed going about their daily rituals. Next, the sprawling Chiquita banana plantation unfolds as passengers are whisked deeper into the Panamanian countryside to the small town of Almirante. Traversing smooth waters back through the archipelago on an open-air boat, they're likely to spy dolphins and manatees cavorting alongside. Hiking through the nature preserves on Bastimentos Island, exploring the town of Bocas del Toro independently and snorkeling along coral reefs are among the optional adventures. 

Colon, Panama -- Once a premier stop-off for wealthy travelers from around the world, Colon remains a major part of Panama's shipping industry to this day. Delta Queen Coastal Voyages passengers will sail along the Chagres River, listen to the calls of tropical birds and howler monkeys, and disembark at Fort San Lorenzo to learn the lore of 17th-century pirate Henry Morgan. Passing through Fort Sherman, one of the largest former U.S. military installations in Panama, passengers will cross the Panama Canal's Gatun locks to rejoin their coastal vessel. Optional excursions include shopping at the ship's pier or viewing the Panama Canal from a helicopter. The evening provides Panamanian entertainment. 

San Blas Islands, Panama -- Cape May Light voyagers will travel by canoe to El Porvenir in Islands of San Blas, the world of the Kuna Indians, to wander through their colorful village and view a special ceremony of song and dance. 

Portobelo Bay and Panama Canal Transit -- Whispers of kings' galleons, hidden treasure and pirates' gold envelop peaceful Portobelo Bay. The staging area welcomes ships from all over the world as they transit the Panama Canal. The Cape May Light will be elevated through Gatun Locks for the transition from one ocean to the other. 

Gamboa Rainforest Resort and Contadora Island -- The Gamboa Rainforest Resort provides more exotic experiences in the form of snorkeling, kayaking, participating in a crocodile safari or rainforest excursion. Later, passengers will cruise to beautiful Contadora Island, a favorite playground for the rich and famous, where a beach barbecue and a bonfire culminate the day.

Darien Jungle, Panama -- Today, the ancient culture of the Embera Indians welcomes voyagers into the Garachine Region of Panama. The transport will be via "cayucos," motorized dugouts that will travel up the Rio Sambu to a remote village, where passengers can witness life's simple pleasures, far from the technological trappings of the modern world. 

Panama City, Panama -- Slipping into Panama City by the light of dawn, Delta Queen Coastal Voyages passengers will discover the heritage of Old Panama. They can wander among the impressive ruins of the original city before viewing the modern pleasures of this Central American metropolis, where shopping is among the finest in the world. They can also view the residences of Panama's wealthiest families while traveling through the city enroute to Miraflores Locks. The vacation includes overnight stays at five-star hotels in San Jose and Panama City. 

The Cape May Light's "Rainforests, Rituals and Rios" voyages will operate from San Jose to Panama City, Dec. 19, 2001; Jan. 2, 16 and 30, 2002; Feb. 13 and 27, 2002; Dec. 4 and 18, 2002. Voyages from Panama City to San Jose will depart Dec. 28, 2001; Jan. 11 and 25, 2002; Feb. 8 and 22, 2002; Dec. 13 and 27, 2002. Prices for the 10-night vacation start at $2,185 per person, double occupancy. 

An "Early Booking Bonus" of $400 per person is reflected in the fares above and offered for "Rainforests, Rituals and Rios" vacations booked at least six months in advance, subject to certain restrictions. Port charges are additional. Competitively priced air transportation is available from 80 U.S. gateway cities, along with hotel extension packages in ports where the voyages begin and end. 

The cv Cape May Light and a sister ship, the cv Cape Cod Light, named for historic lighthouses, are under construction at Atlantic Marine, Inc., in Jacksonville, Fla., and will inaugurate coastal cruise service on May 5 and Aug. 4, 2001. Nine spring, summer and fall vacation itineraries and three winter vacation itineraries are scheduled. 

For reservations, call your travel agent. To request a free full-color brochure and information, call Delta Queen Coastal Voyages toll-free at 800-846-8000 or visit the Web site at Delta Queen Coastal Voyages is a subsidiary of American Classic Voyages Co. (Nasdaq: AMCV), the largest owner and operator of U.S.-flag, U.S.-crewed cruise vessels. AMCV's cruise lines explore the inland rivers and coastal regions of the Americas, and sail throughout the Hawaiian Islands. For more information, visit

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are Previewed for the Continent's Media

- Festival's new ships are true to their names -

At France's Chantiers de l'Atlantique shipyard, Festival Cruises unveiled the next stage of its growth as a leading cruise line to an international group of about 200 prominent journalists. Media representatives from all over Europe were able to visit the new flagship of the fleet, European Vision (1,566 pax, 58,600 tons), which will be christened in St. Nazaire on 22nd June 2001. On leaving he shipyard, the vessel's first voyage will be a gala promotional cruise calling at Barcelona, Genoa and Marseilles. Another highlight of the shipyard visit was the "Stars" ceremony, expressing Festival's identity as the first pan-European cruise line, which was held for European Vision's sister vessel, European Dream (1,566 pax, 58,600 tons). Her christening is scheduled for March 2002.

The European Vision keel-laying was held on 20th June 2000, meaning that the vessel will have been constructed in just 12 months - an amazing feat by 2000 shipyard technicians. Festival is investing approximately 300 million Euros in European Vision, a larger cousin of Mistral, which was built for the company in St. Nazaire in 1999. During the visit, many public areas - including lounges, restaurants, the sun deck and the climbing wall - were toured by journalists. In three months' time, the European public will be enjoying these - and the European Vision's many other state-of-the-art facilities. For the "Stars" Ceremony heralding European Dream, Chantiers de l'Atlantique's CEO, Patrick Boissier, and Festival's Chairman, George Poulides,  placed the stars of the European Union's flag on the keel block of the new vessel. The ceremony was an original touch, underlining Festival's commitment to the single European market and to European standards.

As company chairman George Poulides told the press, European Vision marks a high-point in the development of European cruising - and the new vessel is destined to be an ambassador of European excellence. The company's new flagship illustrates a number of important aspects of Festival's cruise product, including: A wide choice of expertly-designed itineraries, all featuring a blend of history, local color, charming landscapes and both well-known landmarks and smaller, surprising ports. An unsurpassed gastronomic experience, with professional and attentive service guaranteed through 107 highly-trained restaurant staff and a further 75 experts 'behind the scenes' in the Galley. An exceptional variety of international wines and menus designed by renowned international chefs. Enhancement of personal service with a pax/crew ratio of 2.2, as well as         Festival's longstanding multi-lingual crew requirement and special training courses in the "Festival Pleasures" 

·Refined design standards with an emphasis on soft colors and true comfort - a different approach from many "Las Vegas"-style cruise ships. A cosmopolitan European ambience in public rooms such as the "La Pergola" restaurant, the "White Lion" pub and the "Amadeus" night club. The application of advanced technology for operations (pod-propulsion), business (a fully-equipped conference center and business suite) and enjoyment (video games and golf simulator). Health for body and mind at the fitness center and health spa, offering thalassotherapy, aromatherapy, anti-stress massages and much more. Full facilities and event programs for children and teenagers' enjoyment.

For all these reasons - and many more - European Vision has been selected by the Italian government to host several national delegations for the next G8 Summit in Genoa. Soon the European public at large will have their first chance to sample the same VIP treatment, by   cruising with European Vision.

European Vision
The New Expression of European Excellence
Inaugural Cruise: June 2001

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MIAMI (03/21/01) -- Spacious Grecian-inspired surroundings, state-of-the-art exercise equipment and a variety of soothing "European-style" therapies will create a unique environment for personal indulgence and keeping fit aboard the 88,500-ton Carnival Spirit, Carnival Cruise Lines' newest "Fun Ship" set to debut April 29.

"Spas have become an essential part of the overall cruise experience and we've incorporated everything we've learned over the years to create this spectacular new facility," said Bob Dickinson, Carnival president. "'Today's Carnival' is all about choice and the Carnival Spirit's spa - with its vast array of sophisticated exercise equipment and pampering treatments - is just the latest example of our efforts to satisfy today's health-conscious vacationers," he added.  

Dickinson noted that the debut of the Carnival Spirit's "Nautica Spa," combined with the spas on Carnival's 14 other "Fun Ships," is expected to push the line's fleetwide spa usage past the one million mark - roughly half of the company's overall passenger base.

As the first in a new series of "Fun Ships," the Carnival Spirit's design innovations will extend to the two-level, 13,700-square-foot spa. Spanning the forward portion of Lido Deck 9 and Sun Deck 10, the expansive health and fitness club will feature a distinctive multi-level configuration, which maximizes space and provides magnificent sea views from the large picture windows that surround the facility.

Housed within the various levels will be a wide variety of state-of-the-art exercise equipment, including stationary bicycles, treadmills, and rowing, stair-climbing and Keiser pneumatic progressive resistance machines.  A variety of free weights and dumbbells will be available, as

Exercise areas are enhanced by a stunning Grecian-inspired décor, including terra cotta and ochre-accented zebrawood walls, classic Doric columns and hand-painted murals featuring a Greek vase motif with depictions of various Olympic events.

Adjacent to the workout areas is a mirrored aerobics room, which will serve as the venue for Carnival's wide range of exercise classes, including low- and high-impact aerobics, step and senior aerobics, and various stretching and relaxation sessions.  The spacious facility can accommodate large groups or be reconfigured to host several different classes simultaneously.  The Carnival Spirit will also offer a variety of exotic "European-style" treatments, including the new "aroma stone therapy," based on an ancient ritual that combines heated and scented oils with a full body massage using warm basalt stones, creating a relaxing and rejuvenating sensation. These treatments complement a sophisticated menu of full body and scalp massages, seaweed wraps, mud packs, and various slimming and toning therapies.  Treatments are conducted by the Carnival Spirit's highly trained staff, who also provide nutrition and training tips, wellness counseling sessions, and fitness evaluations such as height/weight and body fat composition analyses.

The Carnival Spirit will also feature four swimming pools and five whirlpools -- one housed within the spa itself and four others on Lido Deck 9. For those who want to exercise in the fresh sea air, there's also a padded jogging track encircling Sports Deck 11.  Ten private treatment/massage rooms, complete locker facilities, sauna and steam rooms, and a full-service Nautica Salon, further add to the total "spa at sea" experience.

As part of Carnival's Total Choice Dining(SM), cruising's most comprehensive dining program offering the widest variety of formal and casual options at sea, menus in the Carnival Spirit's main dining room, the Empire Restaurant, will offer the line's signature "Nautica Spa Fare."  These  delicious, guilt-free   dishes  are  lower  in   fat, cholesterol, sodium and calories. Meats are broiled or roasted, salads prepared with low-fat or fat-free dressings and desserts with sugar substitutes.  Vegetarian meals will also be available on all dining room menus, while the expansive two-level La Playa Grille poolside restaurant will include a diversity of healthy offerings, including an extensive salad bar and a 24-hour frozen yogurt station.

Carnival Spirit is scheduled to debut April 29 with a 16-day Panama Canal cruise from Miami to Los Angeles, followed by a three-night voyage from San Francisco to Vancouver departing May 20, a series of week-long Glacier Bay and Glacier Route Alaska cruises throughout the summer, two 12-day Hawaii cruises, and a 14-day Panama Canal sailing from San Diego to Miami departing Oct. 20. From Miami, Carnival Spirit is slated to operate a unique eight-day program to "exotic" Caribbean ports of call throughout the winter, commencing Nov. 3.

For additional information and reservations, contact any travel agent or call 1-800-CARNIVAL. Information and reservations also can be obtained via Carnival's Web site at

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Miami, March 21, 2001 -- Radiance of the Seas arrived today at the port of Miami-Dade, and claimed her place in history books as the first cruise ship where guests will be able to play billiards at sea. The first in the Radiance-class series, the 2,100-guest ship boasts more glass than any other Royal Caribbean ship, including all-glass elevators facing the sea. In addition to internet ports available in every stateroom, Radiance of the Seas is the first cruise ship to provide internet access in every crew cabin. A new generation world cruiser, Radiance of the Seas is designed to sail world itineraries to Alaska, Hawaii, the Panama Canal, Pacific Northwest and the Caribbean. At 90,090 tons, she is the fifth largest ship to call at the Port of Miami. Radiance of Seas reinforces Royal Caribbean International's commitment to the environment. She is the first ship in the Royal Caribbean fleet with vibration-free, smokeless GE gas turbine engines, which represent the cruise industry's newest technology for protecting the environment, and will result in an 80 to 98 percent reduction in exhaust emissions, as well as a reduction in oily waste.

"This ship represents our ongoing commitment to introducing superior hardware to the cruise market," said Jack Williams, president, Royal Caribbean International. "With each new class of ship, there is an evolution of creativity in ship design that our brand is known for."

The variety and scope of entertainment, activity and dining options on this vessel are remarkable. Rock-climbing, basketball, volleyball, and miniature golf are available, along with a jogging track, golf simulator and large gym with treadmills facing the sea. Guests can choose to spend time in the Art Nouveau Casino Royale, enjoy colorful Vegas-style shows in the three-story Aurora Theater, or relax in comfortable armchairs in several intimate spaces and lounges with incredible views of the sea such as Jakarta Lounge and Singapore's Sling.  Five dining venues allow guests the choice of Chops Grille steakhouse, Portofino Italian restaurant, the two-story main dining room, Cascades, or the casual dining options of Windjammer Café or Seaview Café. Freshly made pizza, cappuccino or pastries can be found in Books Books & Coffee.

Royal Caribbean International is a global cruise brand with 14 ships in service and six under construction or on firm order.  For additional information about the cruise line, please visit the company's Internet web site at or

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MIAMI (03/21/01) -- Carnival Corporation (NYSE:CCL) reported net income of $128.0 million ($0.22 diluted EPS) on revenues of $1.0  billion for its first quarter ended February 28, 2001, compared to net income of $171.5 million ($0.28 diluted EPS) on revenues of $824.9 million for the same quarter in 2000.

For the first quarter of 2001, revenues increased 22.2 percent over the comparable quarter in 2000 primarily because of the consolidation of Costa's results of operations starting in the first quarter of 2001 and the introduction of new ships to the company's Carnival Cruise Lines and Holland America Line fleets.  Earnings for the first quarter of 2001 decreased compared to 2000 primarily because last year's results included significantly higher net revenue yields, which largely resulted from the unusually high-priced "Millennium sailings" over the New Year's period last year.

Commenting on first quarter of 2001 results, Carnival Corporation Chairman and CEO Micky Arison noted that, excluding the effect of the Millennium, comparable net revenue yields were down less than one percent compared to the first quarter of 2000, demonstrating a continuing improvement over what the company had reported during the last several quarters.  "It appears our strategy of aggressively pricing our cruises for those guests booking the furthest in advance of sailing has worked, especially considering the improvement in comparable net revenue yields occurred during a period of increasing weakness in the U.S. economy," Arison said.

Also during the first quarter of 2001, the company finalized contracts for the construction of two new 105,000-ton ships for its Costa Cruises brand and also transferred Carnival Cruise Lines' 1,022-passenger Tropicale to the Costa fleet.  The Costa Tropicale is currently undergoing a major refit in Italy and is expected to begin operating seven-day Mediterranean cruises in June 2001.

"The signing of these two ship construction contracts, as well as the transfer of the Tropicale to Costa's fleet, are clear indications of our ongoing efforts to increase our presence in the growing European market by building on Costa's position as the largest European-based cruise line," Arison said.

Looking to the remainder of fiscal 2001, Arison said that bookings continue to be well ahead of where they were at this time last year, although pricing remains challenging.  Cumulative booking volumes for the last three quarters of 2001 are approximately 20 percent ahead of this time last year, significantly outpacing the 9 percent increase in capacity.  "Even with the substantial increase in 2001 capacity, we still have less inventory remaining to sell than we did at this point last year," Arison added. "Although average pricing remains below last year at this point, the gap narrowed as we moved through the wave booking period." Arison also noted that the company's earnings are expected to be reduced by approximately $.01 per share in the second quarter as a result of Airtours' recent announcement that they will be taking a one-off charge related to the closing of 120 travel stores in the United Kingdom.  The company owns approximately 25 percent of Airtours.  

Also during the second quarter, the 2,124-passenger Carnival Spirit is scheduled to enter service on April 29, 2001, and will operate a summer program of Alaska voyages.  Representing the first vessel in a new class of 88,500-ton ships, the Carnival Spirit will feature a higher percentage of balconied staterooms than any other ship in the Carnival fleet and a variety of new facilities, including a wedding chapel, a two-level supper club featuring world-famous stone crabs from Joe's Stone Crab Restaurant in Miami Beach, and an outdoor wrap-around promenade. 

The company has scheduled a conference call with analysts at 11 a.m. today to discuss its first quarter earnings.  This call can be listened to, either live or on a delayed basis, at Carnival Corporation's Web site at 

Carnival Corporation is comprised of Carnival Cruise Lines, the world's largest cruise line based on passengers carried, Holland America Line, Costa Cruises, Cunard Line, Seabourn Cruise Line and Windstar Cruises.  Carnival Corporation's various brands operate 44 ships in the Caribbean, Alaska, Europe, Mexican Riviera, South America and other worldwide destinations.

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Great Lakes Cruise Company Brings French Luxury Passenger Cruising For the Discerning Traveler to the Great Lakes

ANN ARBOR, Mich., March 20 -- Le Levant, a luxurious 90- passenger cruise ship/yacht will be sailing through all five of the Great Lakes in June and September with passengers from North America. The Great Lakes Cruise Company has chartered Le Levant to sail between Toronto, Ontario and Chicago, Illinois on two voyages. Great Lakes Cruise Company President Chris Conlin states, ``Le Levant, a 2 1/2 year old ship, is not only the finest ship sailing in the Great Lakes but it is one of the finest ships sailing anywhere in the world.'' Le Levant is a new high-class vessel that looks like a streamlined private mega-yacht, and has quite a stunning low profile appearance with its royal blue (ice-hardened) hull. She was built in a yacht shipyard in St. Malo, France.

There are 45 ocean-view staterooms and all are located mid-ship and forward. Each cabin features a large ocean-view window, inlaid wood furniture and accenting, designer fabrics, two beds that convert to a queen-size bed, a television, video player, refrigerator, personal safe, and personal amenity kits in the marble-appointed bathrooms.

The main dining room is wood paneled and has round and oval tables. Dining is open seating, with unassigned seats, so you can dine with whomever you wish. Complimentary wines are included for lunch and dinner, and the cuisine is, naturally, classic French.

This is an all-inclusive cruising experience with all port charges, gratuities, shore excursions, and enrichment speakers included in the cruise fare. The crew is almost entirely French.

This year's itineraries include two 7-night cruises: one June 3 - 11 and the other September 10 - 18. New for 2001, discounts up to $850 per couple are being offered on all reservations made by April 30, 2001. Ports of call on these inland seas take in the civilized pleasures of Chicago, Windsor, and Toronto, as well as the dramatic cliffs, canyons and waterfalls that lie just beyond the shore. Passengers enjoy stops at historic Mackinac Island, Niagara Falls, Lake Superior and Saugatuck while savoring the northern wilderness and the lakes themselves.

For more information, visit their Web site at or call toll-free 888-891-0203.

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Three- and Four-day Sailings Provide a Taste of Personal Choice Cruising

Princess will offer a new series of Alaska Sampler cruises this season, designed to give busy travelers an introduction to the benefits of Personal Choice Cruising. The four voyages, ranging from three to four days in length, will sail round-trip from Vancouver and feature calls at one or two ports.

Passengers can choose from four ships offering three different itineraries. Regal Princess and Dawn Princess will sail on a four-day voyage that includes a visit to Ketchikan, departing May 9 and September 15, respectively. Sun Princess will cruise on a four-day itinerary on September 17 with a stop at Sitka. Finally, Sea Princess will offer a three-day Personal Choice Cruising Sampler calling at Victoria and Seattle, departing September 22.

"This is the perfect opportunity for individuals looking for a unique, short getaway to enjoy the many features of Personal Choice Cruising," said Dean Brown, Princess' executive vice president of sales, marketing and customer service. "Plus, we're confident that once they get a taste of cruising with Princess, they'll want to come back for more."

Designed to provide passengers with a truly customized vacation experience, Personal Choice Cruising enables passengers to do "what they want, when they want" by choosing the amenities and services that fit their individual preferences. Sampler cruise passengers will be able to pick from a variety of dining and entertainment options, including Princess' unique Personal Choice Dining program, which enables them to choose between open restaurant-style seating and traditional assigned seating for their main dining room experience. In addition, they will enjoy a wide range of alternative dining venues including a 24-hour restaurant, pizzeria, steakhouse, patisserie, sushi bar and 24-hour room service - which can be enjoyed while watching the spectacular Inside Passage scenery go by from the privacy of one of the ships' many affordable balcony cabins.

Sampler passengers can also opt to visit Princess' website and check out the Cruise Personalizer, enabling them to select their shore excursions on line prior to their departure. Guests will have a variety of shore tour choices in each port of call, and will also be able to take advantage of Princess' own Alaska Outfitters, knowledgeable local guides who can help passengers make the most of their day in port. Ketchikan visitors will enjoy activities such as kayaking, mountain lake canoeing or bike touring in this picturesque waterfront town. In Sitka, passengers can take in the town's Russian flavor or explore its natural beauty with a guided nature walk. Personal Choice Cruising Sampler passengers will have the opportunity to enjoy diverse attractions, from the charm of Victoria to the captivating culture of Seattle.

Alaska Sampler cruise fares range from $329 to $839 per person, based on double occupancy.

More information about Princess' schedules and fares is available through a professional travel agent. Brochures are available by calling 1-800-PRINCESS.

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Royal Caribbean International Ships Earn Top Rankings
 from Conde Nast Traveler &

MIAMI, FLORIDA (March 20, 2001)--- Royal Caribbean International ships received top rankings in Conde Nast Traveler magazine and on the popular AOL cruise website, Ten vessels were recognized for excellence in the areas of service, itineraries, entertainment and activities, children's programs, fitness and recreation programs, food and value for price.

"This recognition is testament to the hard work of thousands of committed employees who are determined to maintain our brand's leadership in the cruise market," said Jack Williams, president Royal Caribbean International. "These honors further energize us to continue providing guests with unparalleled vacation experiences."

In Conde Nast Traveler, Royal Caribbean ships topped the "large ship category" with the greatest number of ships in the top 25 list. First and second place for overall excellence went to Enchantment of the Seas and Grandeur of the Seas, respectively. These ships, and seven others, also singled out in the individual categories of itineraries, service, design, food, onboard programming and activities. 

In the Cruiser's Poll on, five Royal Caribbean ships made the top 10 list in the categories of best overall, best entertainment, best overall service, best children's programs, best fitness and recreation programs and best value for price. Explorer of the Seas was the big winner, earning first place in the best overall and best entertainment categories. 

Royal Caribbean International is a global cruise company currently with 14 ships in service, and six more under construction or on firm order. For additional information about the cruise line, please visit the company's Internet web site at

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Business Class Upgrades From $995 Offered
to Encourage Small-Ship Guests

Ultra luxury cruise pioneer Seabourn Cruise Line announced today that it will offer complimentary round-trip, economy class airfare from major North American gateways for guests joining a range of cruises in Europe and the Mediterranean aboard its all-suite, yacht-like fleet. The offer, which also includes value add-on business class upgrades from as low as $995, is aimed at encouraging travelers to try the newly enhanced shipboard experience aboard the 104-couple Seabourn Pride, Spirit or Legend or the 58-couple Seabourn Goddess I or II.

"We want upscale travelers who have shunned larger cruise ships in Europe to realize that there are intimate, ultra-luxury alternatives," said Rick Meadows, CTC, Seabourn's Senior VP of Sales and Marketing. "By adding free air and reduced business class to the onboard refinements such as an open bar throughout the cruise, our innovative Massage Moments on deck and other upgraded features and amenities on the Yachts of Seabourn, we intend to offer an irresistible invitation to experience Europe in Seabourn Style," Meadows stated.

The offer of included economy class airfare applies to 59 Seabourn departures of six to 14 days in length, sailing between April 19 and November 3, 2001, aboard Seabourn Pride, Spirit, Legend and Seabourn Goddess I & II. Air departures are available from 22 major gateways located in East, Central and West zones. Business class upgrades are offered at $995 per person from the East zone, $1,095 from the Central zone and $1,195 from West zone gateways. The airfare offer is combinable with BEST savings of up to 30 percent for early booking.

Seabourn announced last week that, beginning with the European season, it will be adding an extended series of enhancements to its small-ship onboard product, which is widely accepted as among the most luxurious vacation options available.

Initial immediate refinements will be:

  • Complimentary wines and spirits in bars and lounges throughout the cruise;
  • Free mini-massages for guests sunning on deck, by the pools and spas;
  • Designer robes and towels of fine Egyptian cotton.

Seabourn Pride, Spirit and Legend each had innovative French Balconies added to 36 of their 277-square foot suites at the end of 2000. At the same time, the ships were entirely redecorated and refurbished at a cost of approximately $9 million each.

Already renowned for the exceptionally personalized service and attention to detail on its yacht-like vessels, the company likewise enjoys a sterling reputation for providing sumptuous accommodations, superb cuisine and for its ability to deliver exclusive and memorable experiences ashore in its various ports of call.

Even in the major ports of call, the exclusive number of guests allows for a customized style of delivering the destination - such as private visits to popular sites and unique events possible only for limited numbers of travelers. Thus Seabourn guests can, for instance, visit such attractions as the Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel in private after normal closing hours.

The airfare offer may be withdrawn from some or all of the departures based on capacity control. Not all zones offer business class service for all sailing dates.

For more information, consult a professional travel agent, call Seabourn Cruise Line at 1-800-929-9391 or visit

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Seattle -- Holland America Line has announced that the first two ships of its next series of five new 85,000-ton cruise ships will be named the ms Zuiderdam and ms Oosterdam, respectively taking their names from the south and east "Vista" points of the compass. The names follow the "-dam" naming tradition used for the company's passenger ships since the late 19th century.

The five ships collectively are named "Vista Series," to represent both the ships' forward-looking design and the future direction of the company in expanding its leadership as the highest-rated premium cruise line.

"This new class of ships will be the most advanced and most luxurious ever built for Holland America Line," said A. Kirk Lanterman, chairman and CEO. "'Vista,' selected from names proposed by employees in a contest, is a fitting name for this new series of ships that will carry our company forward into the 21st century. These ships will help Holland America meet the future requirements of our discriminating guests by providing extensive on-board amenities and a larger percentage of verandah staterooms than ever before."

The 1,848-passenger ships, under construction by Italian shipyard Fincantieri Cantieri Navali S.p.A, are scheduled to be delivered in September 2002, July 2003, January 2004, September 2004 and May 2005. The five ships will increase Holland America's lower berth capacity by 9,240, or 70 percent, to a total of 22,588.

The first ship, the Zuiderdam, will be deployed first on seven-day Caribbean cruises, then on seven-day cruises in Alaska.

The Vista-class ships feature innovative "exterior elevators," located on both sides of the vessel and vertically transversing 10 decks, providing guests with panoramic sea views. The ships also include a wide range of spacious accommodation categories. Fully 85 percent of the staterooms feature an ocean view, with 80 percent of those offering private verandahs.

The 951-foot-long ships build upon the hallmarks of the Holland America brand, displaying extensive multi-million-dollar art collections and including numerous dining options, from elegant full-service meals to casual Lido Restaurant service. The ships also will continue other trademark features of Holland America ships, including the Explorers Lounge, Ocean Bar, an exterior covered promenade deck encircling the entire ship, a large Lido pool with a retractable dome, and Holland America's signature "Crow's Nest" observation lounge.

The ship also will offer a new "cabaret-style" show lounge complementing a new three-deck main show lounge. Other new features include a disco, a casual "round-the-clock" café, an Internet cafe, the largest spa facilities in the fleet, Internet/e-mail data ports in all staterooms, an extensive Club HAL children's facility with inside and outside play areas, a concierge lounge for the exclusive use of Penthouse and Deluxe Verandah Suite guests and two interior promenade decks.

The new vessels' propulsion system includes a full-scale diesel-electric power plant, backed up by a gas turbine as an additional power source, giving the vessel the capability to operate on either diesel or gas turbine power. The ships also will use the Azipod propulsion system, allowing for greater maneuverability, enhanced operating efficiencies and environmental benefits.
For more information, consult a professional travel agent, call 1-877-SAIL-HAL (877-724-5425) or visit

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Carnival Settles Port Charges Suit

MIAMI (AP) - Carnival Cruise Lines settled a class-action lawsuit claiming the company had inflated port charges to increase its profits.

Port charges, usually ranging from $50 to $150 per passenger, are added to the price of cruises to cover docking fees that governments collect from cruise lines. Lawsuits filed in 1996 accused Carnival of collecting port charges that exceeded the docking fees they paid.

Carnival agreed to give vouchers worth $25 to $55 to 4.5 million people who sailed on its cruises between April 19, 1992, and June 4, 1997, The Miami Herald reported Thursday. The vouchers can be used for a future cruise, or redeemed for cash at 15 or 20 percent of face value.

Carnival also agreed to pay up to $5 million in attorney fees.

Class members have until April 10 to opt out of the settlement, the largest ever in a class-action lawsuit involving port charges. Miami-Dade Circuit Court was expected to approve the deal in May.

Carnival continued to deny any wrongdoing. The company said it never told customers that port charges were strictly reimbursement for docking fees.

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Wall Street worries about cruise fleets' pricing

By Michael Connor

MIAMI (Reuters) - The big cruise lines have been steadily filling their rapidly expanding fleets with passengers looking to escape an especially harsh North American winter, but as they get ready to release quarterly results, Wall Street is worried that ticket prices may not be high enough.

Analysts are expecting profit declines for the winter quarter from the top three cruise lines, starting with industry leader Carnival Corp. which plans to release its fiscal first-quarter results on Wednesday.

Cruise stocks, including those of Royal Caribbean, the world's No. 2 operator, and Britain's P&O Princess Cruises, which ranks third, have in recent weeks given up much of their bounceback gains after a sustained decline last year. Wall Street was briefly cheered by the demise of some discount rivals in the North American market.

Investors had lifted cruise stocks throughout the 1990s, but were spooked last year by worries about the U.S. economy slowing and possible drags on ticket prices from a shipbuilding boom still underway.

Analysts expect those same concerns to persist for some time.

"While the supply picture in 2001 is an improvement over last year due to certain withdrawals and pricing has stabilized," Bearn Stearns analyst Jason Ader said in a report this week, "there is still a significant amount of capacity to be absorbed in our view, leaving Carnival and other cruise companies very little pricing leverage."

UBS Warburg cruise analyst Robin Farley said in a report on Thursday that pricing this year may be below 1999 levels.

Analysts generally expect net yield, a closely watched industry measure of revenue per passenger, to be flat or down 1 or 2 percent for all of 2001, with quarterly comparisons improving throughout the year.

Cruise executives show no sign of slowing their fleet expansions, expected to cost tens of billions of dollars through 2006, saying cruise holidays remain a great bargain and they believe a golden era for the sector is dawning as North Americans and Europeans age.


Industry executives and analysts have said sales volume was strong during the key "wave season" for cruise vacations, which is now winding down. Carnival said last month that the first five weeks of the season produced a 20 percent uptick in bookings over last year on a 10 percent rise in berths.

"Most of them are pretty happy with the way the wave season has worked," said Lazard Freres & Co. analyst James Winchester.

Analysts surveyed by research firm First Call/Thomson Financial said Carnival, the Miami-based owner of Cunard, Holland America, Carnival Cruise and three other lines, earned 20 cents a share in its first quarter ended Feb. 28, down from 28 cents a year earlier, when strong demand from millennium-themed cruises helped results.

First Call's consensus estimate for Royal Caribbean, which is expected to report on April 24, is 26 cents a share, down from 55 cents during the first three months of 2000.

P&O Princess, the operator of Princess Cruises and P&O Cruises, is expected to earn 9 cents a share, down from 26 cents in first quarter 2000, when the company was still a subsidiary of Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Co.

Analysts said fuel costs, while up from the late 1990s, did not appear to be a major drag on early 2001 earnings.

Farley compared the present sell-off in cruise shares with one in the early 1990s as the United States went into a recession.

"Although the industry experienced a decline in passenger cruise prices in 1991," she said, "the larger cruise operators grew revenues because of capacity additions, and the total number of North American cruise passengers increased by more than nine percent."

Farley and Winchester said Carnival is the best positioned among the top companies and recommend the issue to clients. The company's operations were highly efficient and its debt load relatively light, Winchester said.

But Ader calculated that Carnival, trading on Friday at about $28, or about 16 times its projected full fiscal-year 2001 profits of $1.77, was not a bargain by historical price-earnings valuations. 

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Floating City May Become Reality

An old proposal to build an amazing floating city is stirring excitement again at Port Canaveral. It was 12 years ago that entrepreneurs began planning to dock a giant ship called the Phoenix World City at the port. The idea had been forgotten by most, but now may actually happen.

The quarter-mile giant is now being called the America World City, and the Westin hotel chain has joined the project. Westin is planning on operating three luxury high-rises on the deck.

"We've got a 50-50 chance of getting it here," port commissioner Mac McLouth said.

McLouth was cautiously optimistic about the project 12 years ago. Now, as the port's executive director, he is still cautious.

While planners have not yet built the ship, they have built a network of corporate and political backers for the project, which seems to be giving the project a new momentum.

Proponents said that the ship's presence would recast Port Canaveral as the world's foremost cruise port. The World City would hold up to 6,500 passengers. It would have its own marina in the hull, holding four 400-passenger shuttle craft.

The plan to build parts of the vessel in idle American shipyards, and to assemble the whole thing in Central Florida is generating a new and larger constituency for the ship .

Port officials said that the construction project alone would mean 6,000 jobs. The ship's operations would bring another 6,000. Backers, though, need $1 billion to build it. They hope to have the money by this summer and to have the ship sailing in about three years.

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Rex Reed, Bill Harris and Musical Guests Share Spotlight

LOS ANGELES -- Befitting its trans-Atlantic route back to the U.S., Crystal Cruises is featuring a tribute to American film and jazz aboard its only crossing of the year. Departing Lisbon for Ft. Lauderdale on Nov. 25, Crystal Symphony’s southern Atlantic voyage will host more than a dozen renowned jazz artists, celebrity guest lecturers and a classic film festival. As an additional bonus, with new pricing starting at $2,195 per person, double occupancy for the 11-day itinerary, travelers can save up to 61% off brochure prices.

In addition to daily screenings of American films, legendary film critic Rex Reed and noted Hollywood reporter Bill Harris will lead movie appreciation workshops, offer career retrospectives of renowned film directors, and provide insight on some of the entertainment world’s most intriguing personalities.

Among the musical guests scheduled to perform are The Titan Hot 6, a Nashville-based jazz band lead by Bob Draga, with pianist Jeff Barnhart and Simon Stribling on trumpet; virtuoso banjoist “Fast Eddie” Erickson; and the Peter Meijers Quartet with recording artist Rebecca Kilgore. The musicians will not only play in the ship’s main showroom, the Galaxy Lounge, but also in the intimate Avenue Saloon and Starlite nighclub. Additional accomplished ballroom dancers -- Crystal’s Ambassador Hosts -- will be aboard to serve as dance partners. By day, Dr. Paul Tanner, author of the most used textbook on the history of jazz, will be aboard to share his expertise and personal experience as trombonist with Glenn Miller, Les Brown, Henry Mancini and others.

Crystal Cruises has formulated new Value Collection tiered pricing for this departure, offering outside staterooms at only $2,195, verandah staterooms for $2,995 and penthouse staterooms starting at $4,995 (based on per person, double occupancy accommodations).

West Coast travelers who have more time can add the subsequent sailing -- a 15-day Panama Canal cruise from Ft. Lauderdale -- to return to Los Angeles.

Crystal Cruises’ 50,000-ton, 940-guest Crystal Symphony is one of the most spacious and luxurious vessels cruising the world. Her unique size in the luxury market allows for smooth sailing and a wide range of innovative facilities, generous amenities and elegant accommodations.

For the fifth consecutive year, Crystal Cruises was named best large-ship line in the 2000 readers’ surveys conducted by Condé Nast Traveler and Travel + Leisure magazines.

Crystal Cruises is booked exclusively through professional travel agents. For a complimentary brochure, please call 800.820.6663. Visit the luxury line’s website at

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