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Cruise News
May 1-31, 2011

Click the following links to the cruise news stories...

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Unless otherwise noted, all news items are sourced by individual cruise lines,
 cruise industry-related suppliers, and their agents.

What's on Cruise Diva's mind? A bit of editorializing, news, announcements, and travel tips--find that and more in Cruise Diva's Blog. Recent headlines appear below.

Cruise Diva

Seabourn Takes Delivery of Seabourn Quest

GENOA, Italy, May 31: Seabourn took delivery of the new 450-guest Seabourn Quest today at the T. Mariotti shipyard in Genoa, Italy. The intimate, all-suite ship is the third vessel constructed by Mariotti for Seabourn's fleet, completing a three-year expansion that increased the ultra-luxury line's capacity by more than 200 percent.

"We are very pleased and excited to take delivery of Seabourn Quest," said Richard Meadows, Seabourn's President. "She is a beautiful vessel, and I have no doubt she will earn as much praise from the experts, and as much affection from our guests as her two sister-ships. Her officers, staff and crew are ready to welcome travelers on board to experience Seabourn-style cruising on our newest ship."

Emmy and Tony Award-winning actress Blythe Danner will serve as godmother and name the ship during a glittering sunset ceremony at the port of Barcelona on June 20, 2011. That evening, the ship will depart on a 14-day Maiden Voyage to Athens, stopping at the sort of beautiful seaside towns in France, Italy, Greece and Turkey that are a hallmark of the Seabourn cruise experience.

Seabourn Quest's maiden season includes 7-day Eastern Mediterranean cruises, operating alternately between Athens and Istanbul, and Venice and Athens, as well as a 7-day Black Sea voyage. In the fall, the ship will cruise across the Atlantic Ocean from Malaga, Spain, to Fort Lauderdale, Fla., from where it will sail on a series of round trip voyages in the Caribbean. On Jan 5, 2012, Seabourn Quest will begin a 109-day Maiden World Cruise from Ft. Lauderdale to Venice on a unique eastbound course via South America, South Africa, the Indian Ocean, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, and the Mediterranean.

Seabourn Quest is the third iteration of the sleek and widely admired design that first appeared as Seabourn Odyssey in June 2009, and has been hailed as "a game-changer for the luxury segment." The second sister-ship, Seabourn Sojourn, entered service in June of 2010. For more information or reservations, contact a travel agent, call Seabourn at 1-800-929-9391 or visit

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Princess Welcomes Guide Dogs for the Blind Group

SANTA CLARITA, CA, May 27: Sea Princess recently hosted a group of 25 new graduates from Guide Dogs for the Blind and their owners for the day in San Francisco, to familiarize them with how Princess Cruises can accommodate visually impaired travelers and their canine companions.

The group was able to enjoy a tour of the ship and lunch in the dining room, while learning how Princess can provide for their needs and those of their dogs. The event was hosted in association with Dimensions in Travel, a travel agency that regularly organizes travel for Guide Dogs for the Blind clients, to give new guide dog users a feel for what to expect if they join one of the agency’s group cruises, or travel independently. Since 2004, Princess has hosted 11 Guide Dogs for the Blind groups on cruises to destinations such as Mexico and Alaska.

“Working with these clients has changed the way we travel,” said Diana Saint James, owner of Dimensions in Travel. “It’s not all about what we see when we travel anymore – it’s all of our senses. That’s what our relationship with our blind travelers has taught us. It’s a different way to see the world.”

Aboard Sea Princess guests were able to test out many of the special features offered for visually impaired travelers and their dogs. For the dogs, the ships provide special life jackets, bowls of water in the dining room, and relieving boxes with favored cedar chips. Passengers also have specially translated menus and can enjoy reserved seating in the Princess Theater with room for their dogs. During a cruise, passengers and crew are also invited to meet the dogs during a designated play time.

“These dogs are canine heroes,” said Brian Rademacher, Princess Cruises district sales manager. “It’s truly a labor of love for us to work with this wonderful organization.”

Additional information about Princess Cruises is available through a professional travel agent, by calling 1-800-PRINCESS, or by visiting the company's website at

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Xanterra Parks & Resorts Completes the Purchase of Windstar Cruises

DENVER, May 27: Xanterra Parks & Resorts completed the purchase of Windstar Cruises on Wednesday, May 25, after the sale of the assets of Ambassadors International, Inc. was approved by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware on May 19, 2011. Windstar was Ambassadors’ principal operating unit. Windstar Cruises, with headquarters based in Seattle, Wash., will sail all published 2011 and 2012 voyages, maintain its customer programs and policies and honor Windstar fares and reservations, including charter contracts.

“The first order of business for Windstar Cruises is that it is full sail ahead,” said Andrew N. Todd, President & CEO of Xanterra Parks & Resorts. “Going forward, we intend to maintain Windstar’s business and operations and invest in Windstar’s growth for the long term. We are very excited to have Windstar Cruises become part of Xanterra’s 135-year legacy in hospitality.”

Windstar Cruises operates a three-ship fleet of luxury yachts that explores the hidden harbors and secluded coves of some of the world's most sought-after destinations. These luxurious and intimate ships cruise to nearly 50 nations, calling at 100 ports throughout Europe, the Caribbean and the Americas. The company sails two ships that carry just 148 guests each and a third ship that carries 312 guests.

“Now that the sale of Windstar Cruises has closed successfully, Windstar will be financially stronger and well-positioned for long-term profitability and success under new ownership,” said Hans Birkholz, CEO of Windstar. “Windstar’s 2012 collection of luxury voyages was just announced, and we will continue to provide our guests exceptional luxury travel experiences and the highest level of service. We will also continue to strive to exceed our guests’ expectations aboard our luxury yachts for many years to come.”

Xanterra traces its history in the hospitality industry back to 1876 with the Fred Harvey Company, known throughout the West for its pioneering efforts to develop and operate first-class hotels and restaurants along the route of the Santa Fe Railroad, including the world-famous El Tovar on the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park. Harvey devised a system of alerting his restaurant kitchen staff of the imminent arrival of train passengers via the telegraph wire, thus allowing his dining room and hotel staffs to anticipate the needs of countless travelers prior to their arrival. His innovations and expertise led to first-class and luxury travel service standards that were ahead of their time. In 1968, the Fred Harvey Company was purchased by Xanterra Parks & Resorts, then called Amfac Parks & Resorts.

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Holland America Line's ms Maasdam Completes Signature of Excellence Upgrades

SEATTLE, May 27: Holland America Line's ms Maasdam recently completed a stem-to-stern, multimillion-dollar Signature of Excellence dry dock at Freeport, Bahamas, April 24. The 1,258-guest Maasdam's added facilities and features included new stateroom furnishings and bathroom upgrades; Canaletto, a complimentary Italian eatery; the sophisticated Showroom at Sea; and the stylish lounge called Mix, which combines three distinct bars into one area. Twenty-nine new Lanai staterooms also were added to Maasdam during the refit, and 16 staterooms across Verandah Suite, Outside and Inside categories were converted into Spa Staterooms. The refurbishment was part of the company's now more than $566 million Signature of Excellence ongoing fleet-wide program.

"Maasdam is our fifth ship to receive these exciting enhancements," said Richard Meadows, CTC, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs. "The ongoing Signature of Excellence program has touched all 15 Holland America ships in various ways and ensures that our fleet continues to evolve in premium amenities, programming, technologies and activities that our guests expect from Holland America Line."

Also completing dry-dock refurbishments in April were ms Eurodam, ms Volendam, and ms Veendam.

Volendam's dry dock in Singapore included new carpet in most of the public areas and restaurants. Audio and lighting enhancements were completed in the show lounge. Guest staterooms received new carpeting and soft goods, and all furniture was re-upholstered and refinished. Crew cabins and recreation areas were also updated. The hull was repainted and a number of technical maintenance repairs were performed.

Eurodam's dry dock at Freeport involved new carpets, privacy curtains along the Atrium side of the Pinnacle Grill, hull coating and some routine technical upgrades. Veendam's dry dock, also at Freeport, included routine technical updates. The aft Lido Deck retreat area was modified with a new design with more open deck space, two pools, and two hot tubs.

Signature of Excellence tops $566 Million
The industry-leading Signature of Excellence initiative is an ongoing and comprehensive program that touches every aspect of the Holland America Line experience and the investment now exceeds $566 million. Signature of Excellence features and amenities offer guests more luxurious accommodations, enhanced dining experiences, more enriching activities and exceptional levels of service. For more information, contact a professional travel agent, call 1-877-SAIL-HAL (1-877-724-5425) or visit

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Carnival Glory to Operate Extended Series of Voyages from Boston

MIAMI, May 26: For the first time, Carnival Cruise Lines will operate an extended schedule of voyages from Boston with a series of round-trip 4- and 5-day eastern Canada cruises aboard the 2,974-passenger Carnival Glory beginning in June 2012. Carnival will be the only cruise line offering short cruises from Boston to the Canadian Maritimes. On the new program, Carnival Glory will sail from the recently refurbished Black Falcon Cruise Terminal on 4-day “long weekend” cruises departing Thursdays to Saint John, New Brunswick, and 5-day voyages departing Mondays and Saturdays to Halifax, Nova Scotia; and Saint John. The program will operate June 10 to July 26, 2012. A special 7-day cruise will be offered June 3-10, 2012, with visits to Portland, Maine; Saint John, Halifax; and Sydney, Nova Scotia.

“We are thrilled to offer these 4- and 5-day cruises from Boston which is not only a world-class destination but also provides a convenient and affordable drive-to homeport for millions of Northeastern U.S. residents,” said Gerry Cahill, Carnival’s president and CEO. “Carnival Glory is a fantastic ‘Fun Ship’ with so much to offer and on these cruises guests can visit charming and historic cities in eastern Canadian Maritimes while enjoying all the fun and excitement that Carnival is known for.”

Saint John is a nature lover’s paradise, highlighted by such landmarks as Reversing Falls, where the highest tides in the world intersect with the St. John River and force it to flow backwards twice daily, and the Bay of Fundy, with its gorgeous backdrop of rugged rock formations. Also popular is Saint John’s Historic District, lined with stately Victorian homes, elegant churches and quaint boutiques and eateries.

Founded in 1749 and known as the “Gateway to the Canadian Atlantic,” Halifax is a charming yet cosmopolitan city with outstanding restaurants, shops, and museums and unique cultural experiences. Here, guests can visit Peggy’s Cove, a fishing village famous for its granite coastline, tour the city’s many lighthouses, or observe the changing of the guard at The Citadel, a centuries-old fortress. Other on-shore activities such as kayaking and hiking are also available.

Guests can also experience the many on-board facilities and features of the Carnival Glory: a 270-square-foot Seaside Theatre poolside LED screen displaying movies, concerts and other programming, a 13,300-square foot spa, four swimming pools (one with the line’s signature Twister Waterslide) along with spacious and modern play areas for children, ’tweens and teens, and Serenity, an exclusive adults-only retreat. A wide range of dining venues, from twin full-service dining rooms and a two-level casual poolside eatery featuring a 24-hour pizzeria to a sushi bar and a classic American steakhouse – are available, as well.

New York Cruises
Following its cruises from Boston, Carnival Glory will reposition to New York for a series of 4-day voyages to Saint John and 5-day voyages to Saint John and Halifax from Aug 1 through Sept 3, 2012. Carnival Glory will also offer five week-long fall foliage cruises round-trip from New York to Halifax, Saint John, Boston, and Portland, Maine. Departure dates include Sept 8, 15, 22, & 29 and Oct 6, 2012.

Norfolk Cruises
The ship will also operate a series of cruises round-trip from Norfolk, Va., in the spring and fall. Spring 6-day Bahamas departures will be available on May 15, 21 and 27. In the fall, there will be a 6-day Bahamas cruise on Oct 14 & 22; a 5-day Bahamas cruise on Oct 28, and a special 2-day cruise on Oct 20, 2012.

Reservations are currently being accepted for the Carnival Glory’s voyages from Boston, New York, and Norfolk. For additional information and reservations, contact any travel agent, call 1-800-CARNIVAL or visit

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Art on Seabourn Quest is Well-Matched to the Ship & Its Guests

Seattle, May 25: Seabourn built its outstanding reputation on the basis of its intimate, all-suite ships. So when it came to selecting a collection of artworks for the line's newest ship, the company sought pieces that possessed the same refined sensibility that pervades the rest of the guests' onboard experience.

"Seabourn Quest is the smallest new ship being built by any major line," noted Seabourn President Richard Meadows. "She possesses a unique small-ship aesthetic, and the artworks on board are also meant to reflect that, and to be viewed up close."

Dutch artist Barbara Nanning creates beautiful, vividly colored, blown glass forms with glossily finished surfaces. These are located on walls in the Main Staircase and Atrium, as well as in the Grand Salon. In a gallery near The Restaurant on Deck 4, two small sculptures of space-suited astronauts by Alberto Togni evoke an other-worldly sense as they apparently climb up into the space from somewhere below. In the main elevator lobby on Deck 5, a glass case encloses an exquisite scale model of Thunderbird, a classic, streamlined 55' wooden speedboat originally built for the Thunderbird Lodge on Nevada's Lake Tahoe. The Forward Staircase houses photographic images of the sky by Heidi Wexeler Goksøyr, Larry Vogel, Camille Seaman and Cara Weston, while landings display landscape images by the renowned Australian photographer Peter Lik. The Card Room walls, on Deck 7, are decorated with framed illustrations from antique playing cards.

Photography is an important element of the art on Seabourn Quest. In Seabourn Square, the innovative concierge lounge on board Seabourn Quest, the walls display images by iconic fashion photographers of the 20th century, including John French, Horst, Herb Ritts and Richard Avedon. The entry to The Club is filled with colorful photo-collages of great jazz artists such as Ella Fitzgerald, Fats Waller, Duke Ellington and Billie Holliday by Brian Albers. Another offbeat touch is a soft sculpture by Peter Clark crafted from a ballerina's tutu. Glass is a favored medium on board, with a variety of blown and cast glass objects in a myriad of colors, shapes and textures. In elevator lobbies on Deck 8, guests will see extravagantly decorated glass amphorae created by Eva Galligani. The hallway outside The Spa at Seabourn presents a splendid venue for displaying art. On Seabourn, six glass pieces ranging from geometric designs to amoebic organic shapes are by artists Tobias Møhl, Lotte Thorsøe, Torben Jørgensen, Trine Drivsholm, Karin Mørch and Steffen Dam.

The midships lobby on Deck 5 is given over to whimsy. On Quest, visitors are met by an impassive "Diver" sculpture by Ola Enstad, standing with arms crossed and flippered feet outspread, faceless behind his opaque facemask. The lobby outside the Colonnade on Deck 8 is a place where antique objects are displayed. Aboard Quest this spot is reserved for a variety of lovely antique porcelain plates from Delft in the Netherlands. A generous square of wall in the entry to the Observation Bar on Deck 10 calls for a bold statement, fulfilled brilliantly by vivid abstract paintings from Per Didrik Wærner.

Moderation is called for in choosing art for the suites, since they are occupied by a variety of guests with varying tastes. Seabourn provides abstract images, again by Per Didrik Wærner, that are strongly evocative of land and seascapes. There are many more art objects waiting to surprise and delight guests aboard Seabourn Quest. Like the guests themselves, they are varied, but invariably interesting, smart and fun to be with, which is why they fit in so well on a Seabourn ship. For information on Seabourn's fleet, its award-winning onboard experience and its worldwide array of cruise vacations, contact a professional travel counselor, call Seabourn at 1-800-929-9391 or visit

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A New ALOHA! American Safari Cruises Celebrates Inaugural Season in Hawaii
with Travel Credit Incentive

Seattle, WA, May 25: Hawaii bound vacationers have an extra incentive to book an inter-island yacht cruise aboard American Safari Cruises’ 36-guest Safari Explorer. To celebrate its inaugural season in Hawaii, the line is offering guests a $150 per person travel credit for reservations made from June through July 29, 2011. Sailing weeklong or 10-night active, adventure itineraries between Maui and the Big Island from November 2011 through April 2012, the all-inclusive, upscale 36-guest Safari Explorer visits Moloka’i, Lana’i and Molokini. Guests who book between June and July 29, 2011 will receive a travel credit of $150 per person or $300 per couple. The credit is intended to help guests defray air costs to the Hawaiian Islands where they will embark on their adventure cruise.

“We are confident guests will be thrilled with the experience of seeing and experiencing Hawaii up close on an upscale yacht,” said Tim Jacox, executive vice president of sales and marketing. “This is a brand new vacation option in the Hawaiian Islands, and we hope the travel credit aids in the decision-making process to try an adventure un-cruise in one of the most beautiful places on Earth.” Jacox says the un-cruise defines the active, up close and personal style of adventure travel that makes American Safari Cruises different from other cruise vacations. The Safari Explorer is the only small-group expedition yacht offering overnight cruises in the Hawaiian Islands.

Flexible yacht itineraries focus on the leeward side of the eastern-most Hawaiian Islands. The unstructured itinerary allows time for seeking wildlife such as Manta rays, dolphins and humpback whales. Outfitted for active adventures, the yacht’s well stocked water sports equipment includes kayaks, paddle boards, snorkeling gear, wet suits, sailboats and inflatable skiffs for up-close excursions. Guided snorkeling tours are a highlight throughout the trip. Two knowledgeable expedition leaders guide hiking and kayaking tours. Bicycles are also available for guest use on Moloka’i and Lana’i. Exclusive cultural tours have been arranged for guests in Moloka’i including guided hikes, visiting and restoring a family’s ancient taro terraces, “talking story” with native Hawaiians and a private, authentic Hawaiian pa’ina (feast).

The Safari Explorer has an on-deck hot tub, sauna, exercise equipment, a wine library and two large-screen TVs in the main salon. Exceptional cuisine is prepared with fresh, local ingredients and the complimentary bar offers premium spirits, fine wines and microbrews. The active spa environment includes a complimentary massage and yoga classes. All staterooms offer Tempur-pedic mattresses, flat screen TV/DVD players and iPod docks. Upper category staterooms feature Jacuzzi tubs and suites have private step-out balconies.

Itineraries feature exclusive excursions and include all from-the-yacht activities and equipment; transfers; exquisite meals; fine wine, premium spirits and microbrews; and all port charges, taxes and fees. An all-American crew has a guest-crew ratio of 2 to 1 and includes Hawaii residents who have personal knowledge of the islands. To book a Hawaiian yachting adventure or to request additional information, contact your travel agent or American Safari Cruises at 888-862-8881 or . Mahalo.

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Beatles Tribute Cruise 2012

Beatles Tribute Cruise 2012 will be sailing from Ft Lauderdale on 2/4/12 aboard the world’s largest cruise ship, Royal Caribbean’s OASIS of the SEAS for 7 nights featuring exciting ports of call, Falmouth, Jamaica, Cozumel Mexico and the exotic private island of Labadee. This FABulous cruise is set to coincide with the 48th Anniversary of the Beatles first U.S. Television appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show (2/9/64) and Super Bowl XLVI and honor the world’s greatest little Rock n Roll Band THE BEATLES by celebrating the music and stories of the Beatles with an All Star Cast of entertainers and musicians.

Beatles Tribute Cruise 2012 Entertainment:
Laurence “L J” Juber: a two-time Grammy award-winning fingerstyle acoustic guitarist, also known for his electric work as lead guitarist in Paul McCartney's Wings. Juber has released 16 critically acclaimed solo albums which feature his celebrated arrangements of popular tunes and genre-crossing compositions. BTCers will enjoy L J’s acoustic guitar concerts from the ship’s intimate stages, he will offer private guitar lessons and a Beatles Guitar Workshop.

Revolution, The Beatles Tribute as a long time headliner on Royal Caribbean Revolution brings the music, mannerisms, sounds and authentic Beatle instruments to its fantastic act. Returning Beatles Tribute Cruisers are asked to dress up in their best 60’s style gear when the band plays for a “Beatles DANCE Party” for the special BTC group. According to Greg Piper the leader of Revolution, “We've been headliner entertainers for Royal Caribbean for over 10 years--we highly recommend the Oasis, the best cruise ship on the seas.”

Tim Piper, Revolution’s John Lennon created the critically acclaimed “Just Imagine” Lennon solo about 6 years ago. This show has played to sold out audiences all over the country and Tim has something extraordinary planned for especially the BTCers.

Mark Hudson, an incredibly talented singer, songwriter and Ringo Starr’s former producer. The artist Mark Hudson’s talent, humor and style are readily apparent upon meeting him. As a veteran headliner for the FEST FOR BEATLES FANS Mark delivers his unique one-man rock band and comedy show to the Beatles Tribute Cruise for several key appearances.

Tony Bramwell, Beatle bud and childhood friend of John, Paul, George and Ringo returns to share stories of the Beatles from before they were big stars and from inside the board room of Apple Corp. Tony was a huge hit on the BTC 2011 cruise and he will introduce his latest masterpiece.

Joe Johnson, the host and creator of the nationally syndicated radio show Beatle Brunch, returns as EMCEE of BTC 2012. Joe will entertain with Beatles Trivia contests, prize give-aways and a special presentation of the Ed Sullivan Show which aired on 2/9/64. All the entertainers will be invited to join in to share their special memories of that historic moment in music history.

For information on BTC 2012 go to, The only place to make your reservations.

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Azamara’s Extended Voyages Offer More Captivating Destinations, More Overnights
& Late Stays, and More Value

MIAMI, May 24: Azamara Club Cruises is known for offering up-market travelers more time in port to explore destinations and delivering extraordinary service and culturally enriching experiences. For travelers with even more time, Azamara Club Cruises’ Extended Voyages helps fulfill their wanderlust. Up-market travelers may seamlessly join two, three, four or more consecutive voyages into one incredible regionally immersive experience. With Azamara Quest or Azamara Journey sailing in the Far East, the Mediterranean and Northern Europe, or South America, travelers simply need to pick a season before embarking on a voyage of a lifetime, ranging from 11 - to 78-nights without repeated ports of call.

In addition, guests booking consecutive voyages will receive $300 per voyage, per stateroom for voyages of eight days or less and $400 savings per voyage, per stateroom for voyages of nine days or more for even greater value on an immersive adventure. Savings double on voyages sailing Oct 1–Dec 31, 2011, if booking between June 1-July 31.

“Azamara Club Cruises is throwing open the doors to the world and inviting travelers with wanderlust to step in,” said Edie Bornstein, vice president of Sales and Marketing, Azamara Club Cruises. “Travelers can choose among 114 possible Azamara Extended Voyages combinations that repeat no more than one port and delve deeper, explore more and discover a region’s hidden gems. Throughout, guests can fully enjoy Azamara’s extraordinary service, amazing fine dining and distinctive collection of boutique wines for an unforgettable adventure.”

Guests with ample time will want to book Azamara Journey’s comprehensive 77-night voyage from Stockholm, Sweden, to Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy, departing June 27, 2012, and featuring 25 overnight stays, with four being two consecutive nights, where guests may experience the nightlife of Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Paris and Seville, Spain. This Extended Voyage features a unique Jazz in the Norwegian Fjords itinerary, which highlights the North Seas Jazz Festival, one of the world’s premiere musical festivals.

For those keen on exploring the Far East, they may prefer Azamara Journey’s Piraeus (Athens), Greece to Hong Kong, China voyage departing Oct 26, 2012. This 72-night voyage, combines six voyages – Holy Land, Egypt & Suez Canal; Luxor, Petra, Sinai & Eilat; Luxor Petra & Sinai; The Spice Coast & Ceylon; Burma & Andaman Sea Islands; Vietnam & Thailand, Christmas and New Year – for an in depth exploration of the region, plus an incredible opportunity to spend Christmas and New Year’s Eve in Hong Kong through a Land Discoveries excursion.

Also in the region, Azamara Quest departs Feb 29, 2012, on a 78-night voyage, sailing from Singapore to Piraeus (Athens), Greece. This port collector’s dream, combines six voyages – Trade Routes to the Orient; Japan & Taiwan; Manila, Sabah, Borneo, Komodo & Bali; Spice Route; Petra, Sinai & Luxor; Holy Land, Egypt & Suez Canal for an unforgettable experience.

During Extended Voyages guests have ample time to enjoy Azamara Club Cruises’ hallmark extraordinary service and more inclusive amenities, such as included gratuities for housekeeping, dining and bar staff; complimentary bottled water, sodas, specialty coffee, and teas, as well as complimentary red and white boutique wines to accompany lunch and dinner; complimentary self-service laundry; English Butler service for suite guests; and shuttle bus to city centers in ports, where available. For more information, call a travel professional, dial 1-877-999-9553, or visit the Azamara Club Cruises microsite at

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Royal Caribbean’s Radiance of the Seas Begins Her Drydock

Victoria, British Colombia, Canada, May 24: Royal Caribbean Intl’s Radiance of the Seas enters the Victoria Shipyards in Victoria, British Colombia, Canada, to start her 22-day dry dock. The ship will receive a variety of enhancements including a Samba Grill, Giovanni’s Table, Park Café, Boardwalk Dog House, Izumi, as well as 15 new staterooms.

Royal Caribbean Intl is a global cruise brand with 22 ships currently in service. The line also offers unique cruise tour land packages in Alaska, Canada, Dubai, Europe, and Australia and New Zealand. For additional information or to make reservations, call your travel agent, visit or call (800) ROYAL-CARIBBEAN.

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Take a Break with a Virtual Vacation on Paul Gauguin Cruises & 'Meet Me in Tahiti'

Experience paradise with just the click of a mouse through Paul Gauguin Cruises’ Meet Me In Tahiti social media campaign. Paul Gauguin Cruises, operator of the highest-rated and longest continually sailing luxury cruise ship in the South Pacific, the m/s Paul Gauguin, is offering the opportunity for guests to take a virtual vacation and cruise through Tahiti, tagging Facebook friends along the way. “Meet Me In Tahiti” travelers can then share memories by creating postcards – which can be emailed or posted directly to Facebook, bringing their friends into island activities such as kayaking, snorkeling or relaxing on a private beach. By visiting, virtual guests can bring friends along while getting to paradise in just five minutes.

The new campaign further illustrates the cruise company’s dedication to sharing their French Polynesia and destination expertise with past, current and future guests of The Gauguin. In just a week after launching the new campaign, more than 3,000 people from around the world have visited, and at least a third of the visitors discovered the site via links shared by their Facebook friends. Interest in Tahiti as a vacation destination has increased due to’s innovative use of Facebook Places, allowing visitors to “check-in” in Tahiti and “brag” about their virtual vacation on their Facebook wall. The rate of visitors coming from shared links is estimated to be three times higher than similar campaigns.

“We are thrilled at the initial success of our new ‘Meet Me In Tahiti’ social media campaign. Paul Gauguin Cruises is a company deeply committed to the destination of French Polynesia, its culture, its divine beauty, its people. We are proud to share our destination with the world, even virtually, and look forward to welcoming new and returning guests to our ship and islands personally,” comments Diane Moore, President, Paul Gauguin Cruises.

For information about a Paul Gauguin Cruise, contact a professional travel agent, call 1-800-848-6172, or visit

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Crystal Serenity Super-Redesign Complete After Line's Longest-Ever Dry Dock

HAMBURG, Germany, May 24: One Hamburg shipyard, two weeks, several talented designers, 500+ international staffers, 606 crew, and $25 million. Such are the ingredients for the ultra-luxurious redesign of Crystal Cruises' largest ship, Crystal Serenity. Just completed after a round-the-clock remodel at Germany's Blohm + Voss shipyard, the dry dock was the company's longest ever. All 535 staterooms, retail centers, outdoor pool deck, corridors and other spaces received a dazzling facelift, in addition to general sprucing of the entire outside and inside of the vessel.

"In the past year and a half, we have invested well over $50 million in our ships," says Crystal Cruises' President Gregg Michel. "The striking new spaces serve as a stunning backdrop to the incomparable service and choices that always characterize a Crystal vacation."

Interior designer, Keith Rushbrook, principal at the Toronto-based II BY IV Design Associates summarizes the vision: "We wanted modern classic elegance. We wanted Fifth Avenue – creme de la creme New York-inspired living and retail spaces that people love and look forward to spending time in."

Sophisticated Stateroom Remodel
All of Crystal Serenity's luxury accommodations received new appointments. While Crystal Penthouses were refreshed with new soft goods, Deluxe Staterooms, Penthouses, and Penthouse Suites were completely transformed with new, floor-to-ceiling tufted headboards, bedside cabinets, sofas, curtains, pillows and custom carpets in contemporary lines and classic stone, silk, velvet, leather and crisp linen textures. The new sofas also offer more third berths – a nice feature for Crystal's growing family clientele. Blu-ray players and flat-screen televisions were added, and new modern lighting features, plus an electronic "do not disturb" and doorbell system throughout the ship, allow guests greater personalization of their chic accommodations.

Remarkable Retail Space Re-Do
The Apropos boutique was redesigned into three dramatic shopping spaces, against a backdrop of rich Zebrano wood and herringbone rosewood, arresting black-plum-magenta carpeting and tufted leather seating. Massive sculptural aluminum screens graphically pop against gray smoked glass walls. A new area is dedicated to Christian Dior cosmetics. The Dior shop is exclusive to Crystal and is the largest of its kind that isn't land-based.

Not be outshone, the Facets fine jewelry store also received a new, private sales area and a new, overall look mirroring a jewelry box, with mother-of-pearl feature wall and beveled chrome vitrines.

Perfectly Posh Pool Deck
Guests can now lounge poolside on bright lime green, azure and mango sofas , lounge chairs, and circular pod beds, a la those recently added to Crystal Symphony's pool area.

Mood Lighting and Retouched Passageways
Lighting played a major role in the redesign. Dramatic new mood lighting enhances the romance of spaces, showcases the drama of the headboards, and warms the ship corridors, which also received new, custom carpeting on the floors and engaging art work on newly-textured walls. Thoughtful attention was given to conservation as well as style.

"We were looking to balance the luxurious interiors of Crystal Serenity with saving energy," says Nick Hogget of DPA Lighting Consultants. "Like the Crystal product, even the lighting provides the guest with choices. We wanted to make sure the guest has a wonderful experience in all the different spaces."

Still to come...
Like all remodeling projects, not all materials arrived on schedule. By end of June, the spacious Penthouse and Penthouse Suite verandahs will sport new furnishings and the stateroom design will be augmented with decorative coverlets. Silk Road will also unveil new carpets and fabrics.

Giving to Those in Need
Furnishings, electronics, and accessories removed from Crystal Serenity were donated to needy communities around the world. Donations began during the ship's final, pre-dry dock voyage up the western coast of Africa when bedspreads were donated to Senegal during the ship's call there. An extensive donation plan was instituted in Hamburg, with hundreds of sofas and televisions loaded onto eight 40-foot containers, and shipped to the Salvation Army in New Jersey.

"We not only delivered a show-stopping new look for our guests' home-away-from-home, we delivered much-needed goods to those less fortunate," says Crystal Cruises' President, Gregg Michel.

Crystal Serenity emerged from dry dock to begin a series of Baltic, British Isles, and North Cape cruises. Come August, the ship sails to the Mediterranean for a variety of late summer and fall cruises, where guests can not only enjoy the resort's new look, but exceptional value from a huge Fall Fare Sale, up to $2,000/couple "All Inclusive. As You Wish" spending credits, and other amenities.

Crystal Cruises' ethos of warm and friendly attentiveness, proffered by top-trained service staff from around the world, has earned the line a reputation for elevating hospitality to an art form. With no guest request left untended, Crystal Cruises has been the perfect choice for luxury travelers for over two decades. For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit

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Norwegian Dawn Receives Major Enhancements

MIAMI, May 23: Norwegian Dawn is currently undergoing a multi-million dollar refurbishment while the ship is in dry dock in Freeport, Bahamas. The 2,224-passenger ship is receiving extensive renovations including the addition of 28 suites; Moderno Churrascaria, the popular Brazilian steakhouse restaurant introduced on Norwegian Epic; the relocation of the Spinnaker Lounge; and flat screen televisions in all guest and crew staterooms, along with many other exciting updates. The ship will re-enter service on May 27, 2011 in Boston, her new seasonal homeport.

“Norwegian Dawn’s refurbishment is very similar to those enhancements made to Norwegian Star last year,” said Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line’s chief executive officer. “We have found Norwegian Star’s updates very well received and we expect our guests will appreciate the changes made to Norwegian Dawn as well.”

Norwegian Dawn’s refurbishment includes:

58 new suites and staterooms (available beginning on the Sept 16, 2011 sailing) including:
    o Four Deluxe Owner’s Suites ranging from 667-732 square feet;
    o 14 Family Suites from 408-452 square feet, most sleeping six;
    o 10 Family Suites with balcony from 409-495 square feet, most sleeping six;
    o 18 Inside staterooms.
• Moderno Churrascaria specialty restaurant (in the space previously occupied by Salsa, the Tex Mex restaurant) which features a large salad bar and tableside passadors serving a variety of skewered meats;
Upgraded flat screen televisions in all guest and crew staterooms broadcast on a digital signal;
Relocation and total renovation of the Gift Shop, Art Gallery, Photo Gallery, Conference Center, Spinnaker Lounge and Blue Lagoon Restaurant;
Enhancements to the Dawn Club Casino including new layout, fixed furniture and carpet;
Complete renovation of the Kid’s Crew and Teen Club to offer a more versatile layout and cater to the range of children’s ages and interests. Updates include new game systems, activities and sound and light. There will also be a room dedicated for the Under 2 Zoo where parents can accompany their children under two and enjoy age appropriate activities;
Aesthetic improvements in the Fitness area and Garden Café;
Atrium Lobby refresh including new furniture in Java Café and plant replacement;
Complete refurbishment of crew dining and recreation areas.

Technical modifications include the replacement of one engine, as well as preventative maintenance, removal and replacing of both bearings on the port and starboard azipods; application of a new hull coating; and an upgrade to the hot temperature regulation which will reduce energy consumption.

Beginning on May 27, 2011, Norwegian Dawn will sail a series of 7-day Bermuda itineraries departing from Boston every Friday with three days in Bermuda through Oct 21, 2011, followed by a 2-night cruise on Oct 28, 2011. The ship will reposition to Miami and begin sailing 10 and 11-day Southern Caribbean itineraries through April 8, 2012.

Norwegian Dawn is the second of three Freestyle Cruising ships scheduled for improvements this year. Norwegian Sun completed her dry dock renovations in March and Norwegian Spirit will enter dry dock on September 26, 2011. For more information or to book a sailing on Norwegian Dawn, call a travel professional, visit or contact Norwegian Cruise Line at 866-234-7350.

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Beatles Tribute Cruise 2012 Announced

The Beatles Tribute Cruise 2012 will be sailing from Ft Lauderdale on 2/4/12 aboard the world’s largest cruise ship, Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas for 7 nights featuring exciting ports of call, Falmouth, Jamaica, Cozumel Mexico and the exotic private island of Labadee. This FABulous cruise is set to coincide with the 48th Anniversary of the Beatles first U.S. Television appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show (2/9/64) and Super Bowl XLVI and honor the world’s greatest little Rock n Roll Band THE BEATLES by celebrating the music and stories of the Beatles with an All Star Cast of entertainers and musicians.

Beatles Tribute Cruise 2012 Entertainment:
Laurence “L J” Juber: a two-time Grammy award-winning fingerstyle acoustic guitarist, also known for his electric work as lead guitarist in Paul McCartney's Wings. Juber has released 16 critically acclaimed solo albums which feature his celebrated arrangements of popular tunes and genre-crossing compositions. BTCers will enjoy L J’s acoustic guitar concerts from the ship’s intimate stages, he will offer private guitar lessons and a Beatles Guitar Workshop.

Revolution - The Beatles Tribute as a long time headliner on Royal Caribbean: Revolution brings the music, mannerisms, sounds and authentic Beatle instruments to its fantastic act. Returning Beatles Tribute Cruisers are asked to dress up in their best 60’s style gear when the band plays for a “Beatles DANCE Party” for the special BTC group. According to Greg Piper the leader of Revolution, “WE'VE BEEN HEADLINER ENTERTAINERS FOR ROYAL CARIBBEAN FOR OVER 10 YEARS - WE HIGHLY RECOMMEND THE OASIS - THE BEST CRUISE SHIP ON THE SEAS.”

Tim Piper: Revolution’s John Lennon created the critically acclaimed “Just Imagine” Lennon solo about 6 years ago. This show has played to sold out audiences all over the country and Tim has something extraordinary planned for especially the BTCers.

Mark Hudson: an incredibly talented singer, songwriter and Ringo Starr’s former producer. The artist Mark Hudson’s talent, humor and style are readily apparent upon meeting him. As a veteran headliner for the FEST FOR BEATLES FANS Mark delivers his unique one-man rock band and comedy show to the Beatles Tribute Cruise for several key appearances.

Tony Bramwell: Beatle bud and childhood friend of John, Paul, George, and Ringo returns to share stories of the Beatles from before they were big stars and from inside the board room of Apple Corp. Tony was a huge hit on the BTC 2011 cruise and he will introduce his latest masterpiece.

Joe Johnson: the host and creator of the nationally syndicated radio show Beatle Brunch, returns as EMCEE of BTC 2012. Joe will entertain with Beatles Trivia contests, prize give-aways and a special presentation of the Ed Sullivan Show which aired on 2/9/64. All the entertainers will be invited to join in to share their special memories of that historic moment in music history.

For information on BTC 2012 go to, the only place to make your reservations.

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Dash To Savings During Norwegian’s “Freestyle Dash”

Norwegian Cruise Line launches its “Freestyle Dash” limited time offer on Tuesday, May 24, 2011 for all fleet-wide sailings of three days or longer. Guests who take advantage of the special savings will receive up to $250 per stateroom (based on cruise length and category) to spend on board for exciting shore excursions; treatments in Norwegian’s award-winning spas; or dinners in any of Norwegian’s Freestyle Dining restaurants. The three-day promotion also provides reduced deposits for popular Freestyle Cruising destinations to Alaska; Bahamas & Florida; Bermuda; Caribbean; Europe; and Hawai’i on new bookings made by May 27, 2011.

As a special bonus offer during Norwegian’s “Freestyle Dash” sales event, guests who book a Norwegian Epic cruise vacation in Europe can receive up to $300 to spend on board (based on stateroom category). Spend the summer visiting amazing ports-of-call each day then return to a variety of entertainment and dining options from around-the-world each night. Norwegian Epic’s Western Mediterranean sailings from Barcelona, Spain sets sail to Naples, Rome (Civitavecchia), Florence (Livorno), Italy; Nice (Villefranche), and Provence (Marseille), France.

To catch the “Freestyle Dash” limited time offer, contact a travel professional, call Norwegian at 888-NCL-CRUISE (625-2784), or visit

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Court Approves Sale of Windstar Business and Operations to TAC Cruise LLC

SEATTLE, May 19: Ambassadors International, Inc. ("Ambassadors") announced that the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware has granted an order approving the sale of substantially all of Ambassadors' assets, including its principal operating unit, Windstar Cruises, to TAC Cruise LLC, an affiliate of Xanterra Holding Corporation. The sale is expected to close next week.

All of Windstar's luxury yachts are sailing as scheduled, serving customers and guests with a high level of attention to their travel experience.

During a court-supervised competitive bidding process in compliance with Section 363 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, TAC Cruise LLC submitted a winning bid of $39 million in cash. Windstar will be operated as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Xanterra Holding Corporation of Greenwood Village, CO. Xanterra Holding Corporation and its affiliates have operated in the hospitality and leisure industry for more than 100 years.

"Windstar emerged as a tremendous long-term opportunity due to the line's exceptional product, loyal following and high level of guest satisfaction in the luxury travel market," said Andrew N. Todd, CEO of Xanterra Holding Corporation. "Xanterra intends to maintain Windstar's business and operations and to invest in Windstar's growth following the close of the sale."

Hans Birkholz, CEO of Ambassadors and Windstar, said, "Windstar is very pleased with the successful outcome of this sale process and expects to complete it by early next week. Windstar is excited to have its new owner join in building Windstar's world class brand. Windstar will be well-positioned for long-term profitability and success under new ownership and we will continue to provide exceptional service and extraordinary luxury travel experiences for our guests."

It is expected that Ambassadors' stockholders and holders of Ambassadors' convertible notes will not receive any distribution following the sale and these securities will likely have little, if any, value following Ambassadors' Chapter 11 proceeding.

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Disney Cruise Line Unveils New Disney Fantasy Guest Experiences

CELEBRATION, FL, May 19: The Disney Fantasy, the new Disney Cruise Line ship set to debut next spring, will bring to life many of the innovative features guests love on the recently launched Disney Dream including AquaDuck, the world’s first shipboard water coaster. But new design elements and guest experiences will give the Fantasy an identity all its own.

The Disney Fantasy is the second of two newly designed Disney Cruise Line ships that take the family cruise experience to new heights. Sister ship to the Disney Dream, which entered service in January 2011, the 4,000-passenger Disney Fantasy will sail week-long Caribbean cruises from Port Canaveral, Fla., with its maiden voyage scheduled for March 31, 2012.

“Animation Magic” at Animator’s Palate
Animator’s Palate on the Disney Fantasy brings the magic of Disney animation into the dining room with a new show called “Animation Magic.” The dinner show celebrates the magic of Disney animation and allows families to create and participate in a whole new way.

Europa Nighttime Entertainment District
On the Disney Fantasy, adult guests step into a world that’s all their own at Europa – a nighttime entertainment district exclusively for guests 18 and older that features sophisticated bars and trendy lounges inspired by the very best in European travel.

“Disney’s Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular”
A new ship means new main stage entertainment at the 1,340-seat Walt Disney Theatre. New to Disney Cruise Line, “Disney’s Aladdin – A Musical Spectacular” takes the stage on the Disney Fantasy. During this Broadway-style production, guests laugh along with the wise-cracking Genie and the cast from the classic animated Disney film, “Aladdin.”

Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique
At Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique on the Disney Fantasy, aspiring young princesses and pirates receive the full fairy tale treatment with pixie-dusted and piratical makeovers at this very special salon.

To learn more about Disney Cruise Line or to book a vacation, guests can visit, call Disney Cruise Line at 888/DCL-2500 or contact their travel agent.

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Music Aficionados to Enjoy World-Class Performances During
Cunard's Transatlantic Season

May 19: In addition to the compelling series of Cunard Insights speakers and other activities aboard a luxury cruise vacation on Queen Mary 2, the ship’s 2011 Transatlantic Crossings season will feature a robust line-up of some of the world’s most sought-after music performances. Aboard Cunard Line’s flagship, guests will have the rare opportunity to intimately experience the world-class talents of virtuoso violinist Elizabeth Pitcairn, musicians from New York's famed Juilliard School, and London’s in-demand National Symphony Orchestra under Conductor Anthony Inglis.

“At Cunard Line, we pride ourselves on providing glamorous experiences to our guests, whether it is through our formal nights or extensive entertainment options,” said Peter Shanks, president of Cunard Line. “The caliber of these accomplished musicians will certainly heighten the grand sense of occasion that our guests enjoy whilst sailing on a Cunard voyage.”

Having set sail on 17 May from New York, celebrated American virtuoso violinist Elizabeth Pitcairn will perform in partnership with one of the world’s most legendary instruments, the Red Mendelssohn Stradivarius of 1720, said to have inspired the Academy Award®-winning film “The Red Violin.” Ms. Pitcairn appears in the 10th anniversary Meridian Collection edition of the film in a special feature documentary interview.

Influenced by the musical and comedic genius of legendary Hollywood stars Judy Garland, Jackie Gleason and Victor Borge, as well as the beauty and talent of concert violinists David Oistrakh and Jascha Heifetz, Pitcairn has created her own signature style of performance. During the summer of 2011, she will become the first successive executive director of the Luzerne Music Center and Chamber Music Festival in New York in more than 30 years. An alumna of the intensive summer camp in upstate New York, she was chosen by the founders to carry on the tradition of building young artists and audiences of the future. She is an alumna and former adjunct professor at the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music, and is currently on the faculty at the Colburn School of Performing Arts in Los Angeles.

Prior to Tuesday’s embarkation, Queen Mary 2’s Entertainment Director Paul O’Loughlin presented Pitcairn and Luzerne board member Michael Conway with a donation from Cunard of $7,500 to support the school’s summer camp performing arts program for instrumentalists, composers and conductors, ages 10-18.

As part of Cunard Line’s ongoing partnership with the renowned Juilliard School, jazz musicians from the famed performing arts institution will return for a second year to demonstrate their extraordinary talents on an even greater number of Crossings. With performances scheduled in the Chart Room and the Royal Court Theatre, guests will also have the opportunity to attend fascinating Q&A sessions with the musicians. They will sail aboard these select Transatlantic Crossings: May 17, June 10, July 20, August 15 & 22, Sept 5, Oct 23, Nov 10, and Dec 12.

Following their spectacular Transatlantic Crossings in 2009 and 2010, the National Symphony Orchestra (NSO) will perform on the 7 October Eastbound Transatlantic Crossing. Once again, guests will be invited to sing with the NSO on the stage of the Royal Court Theatre.

Additionally, guests will have the opportunity to attend rehearsals with NSO Conductor Anthony Inglis and prepare for Cunard's Last Night of the Proms to be staged at the end of the Crossing. A Grammy®-nominated conductor, Inglis has been featured more times at London’s Royal Albert Hall than anyone else in the iconic venue’s history. He leads a prolific international career, appearing with some of the greatest orchestras in concert halls from Australia to Scotland.

The NSO is one of the busiest freelance orchestras in the United Kingdom, working with Katherine Jenkins, Russell Watson and many other popular classical artists. Members of the NSO can be heard on many major film soundtracks, and among the luminaries with whom they have appeared include Reba McEntire and Sir Cliff Richard, who was backed by the ladies of the NSO string section at the Royal Albert Hall.

Queen Mary 2's Transatlantic Crossings reflect the pinnacle of civility and refinement in ocean travel. The only company offering regularly scheduled Transatlantic liner service, Cunard is sailing 21 classic Transatlantic voyages between New York and Southampton, with extended Crossings between New York and Hamburg. In addition, “Grand” voyage options are available, roundtrip from New York, combining classic European itineraries with a Transatlantic Crossing on either side. For more information on Queen Mary 2 or to book a voyage, consult your travel agent, call toll-free 1-800-7-CUNARD or go to

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Norwegian Jade’s New Canary Island Cruises Available For Booking

MIAMI, May 18: Norwegian Cruise Line today announced the addition of a series of 15 nine-day Canary Island sailings on Norwegian Jade departing Barcelona, Spain beginning Dec 8, 2011. The cruise will call on Funchal, Madeira; Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Tenerife, Canary Islands; Arrecife, Lanzarote, Canary Islands; and Granada (Malaga), Spain along with spending four relaxing days at sea. Guests also have the option to board the ship in Granada (Malaga), Spain.

The Canary Islands offer a range of unique experiences from exploring the lunar landscapes of Timanfaya National Park home to the Fire Mountains and visiting the volcanic caves to see the rare Blind Albino crabs to discovering the dense metropolis of Santa Cruz with its unique urban sculptures.

The 2,402-passenger Norwegian Jade offers Norwegian’s signature Freestyle Cruising which offers guests the ultimate in freedom and flexibility. The ship offers a range of amenities such as 14 dining options, two swimming pools, a water slide, a casino, spa and fitness center, as well as a range of stateroom accommodations, including a suite complex at the top of the ship complete with two luxurious 5,000 square-foot garden villas, a deluxe owner’s suite, three owner’s suites and 10 courtyard villas, eight of which have a separate children’s bedroom. For more information on Norwegian Cruise Line and to book a cruise, contact a travel professional, call 866-NCL-CRUISE (625-2784) or visit

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Regent Seven Seas Cruises Debuts “Grand Voyages”

FORT LAUDERDALE, FL, May 18: Regent Seven Seas Cruises is pleased to unveil its 2012 “Grand Voyages.” In response to past guest requests and heighted demand for extended sailings in Europe and South America, these new, longer itineraries are ideal for intrepid explorers

“A great number of our loyal guests are perennial travelers and seek out voyages which offer a wide range of unique experiences,” explains Mark Conroy, president of Regent Seven Seas Cruises. “Our new 2012 ‘Grand Voyages’ offer an abundance of opportunities for exploration and are certain to create life-long memories.”

· Northern Odyssey, 29 nights, London to Stockholm, departs June 3, 2012. Travelers visit the most alluring ports in the British Isles, Ireland, Iceland, Norway and the Baltic. Along the way, guests will be treated to the region’s must-see star ports such as Dublin, Copenhagen, Oslo and Stockholm, along with lesser-explored locales in Scotland, Norway and Iceland and overnight calls in Reykjavik, Oslo and St. Petersburg.

· Latin Sojourn, 27 nights, Monte Carlo to Buenos Aires, departs Nov. 9, 2012. A nearly four-week journey visiting some of the Costa del Sol’s treasures – Barcelona, Cartagena and Granada – before calling on the golden shores of North Africa and the Canary Islands. Relaxing days crossing the Atlantic are the perfect prelude to one of the most comprehensive explorations of South America’s east coast, where bustling metropolises are perfectly blended with Old World colonial charm and breathtaking nature preserves.

Fares include free round-trip airfare, free and unlimited shore excursions, and bonus savings. Penthouse Suites and higher will also enjoy a complimentary upgrade to Business Class air.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises is widely recognized as the world’s most inclusive cruise line because airfare, all-suite accommodations, award-winning cuisine, open bars, nightly entertainment, sightseeing tours and excursions, gratuities and taxes, and a free, pre-cruise luxury hotel package are included in the fares. Beginning with the 2012 summer season, guests in Concierge Level and above suites will enjoy a range of benefits from priority shore excursion and restaurant reservations to space-available upgrades and complimentary amenities. To receive a brochure or for more information on Regent Seven Seas Cruises, see a professional travel agent, visit or call toll-free 800-285-1835.

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Holland America Line's ms Rotterdam to Sail Year-Round from Rotterdam,
the Netherlands, Starting Fall 2012

Seattle, WA, May 17: In a move that’s a first for the premium cruise line, Holland America Line will deploy ms Rotterdam from Europe year-round starting in Sept 2012, on a series of extended sailings round-trip from Rotterdam, the Netherlands. The line selected the homeport of Rotterdam because of the company’s deep historical connection to the city as well its easily accessible location in Northwest Europe. Itineraries being released through spring 2013 include several regional sailings ranging from 14 to 18 days, and two extended voyages that sail 34 and 90 days.

“The city of Rotterdam is where Holland America Line has its roots, and for us to place a ship there year-round is sentimental, exciting and ground-breaking for our line and our guests,” said Richard Meadows, CTC, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs. “Sailing from Rotterdam is going to be a wonderful homeport for many of our European guests, but these longer itineraries also will appeal to travelers coming from all over the world.”

After concluding its previously announced summer season throughout Europe, ms Rotterdam sails Sept. 15, 2012 on a 14-day Spain & Portugal Explorer cruise that takes guests through the Strait of Gibraltar to Barcelona, Spain, also calling at ports in Portugal along the way there and back.

Two 17-day explorations in Sept and Oct take different routes. The Sept. 29 Moorish Empire voyage sails through the Strait of Gibraltar to Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy, and back, calling at popular ports in Spain and Portugal, while the Oct. 16 Canary Island Adventure heads south to the Canary Islands and Morocco, with overnight calls at Funchal, Madeira, Portugal and Tenerife, Canary Islands. The 18-day Canary Island Holiday departs Dec. 22 and offers the same ports of call with an additional overnight at Tenerife to celebrate the New Year. The April 9, 2013, 19-day Canary Island Adventure takes the same route as the holiday cruise but adds a call at Portimão, Portugal.

Departing Nov. 2, 2012, ms Rotterdam sets sail from the port of Rotterdam on a round-trip 34-day Caribbean Odyssey adventure that takes the ship across the Atlantic Ocean to the Caribbean and back. After calling at the Azores, the ship sails to the Caribbean, with calls at Tortola, St. Maarten, St. Lucia, Trinidad, Barbados and all three “ABC” islands — Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao — before returning to Rotterdam via calls at Funchal, Madeira, Portugal and Southampton, England.

Guests looking for a unique adventure can embark on ms Rotterdam’s 90-day Passage to the Far East cruise that departs Jan. 9, 2013. The round-trip Rotterdam voyage takes an easterly route to Asia, passing through the Suez Canal and calling at ports in Spain, Greece and India, both before and after a far-reaching journey to the Far East. Guests will enjoy several overnight stays and extended time in port during calls throughout Dubai, Malaysia and Singapore. Another cruise highlight includes an in-depth two-week exploration of Indonesia, a place rich in Dutch heritage, as well as home to many Holland America crew. In addition to the full 90-day voyage, segments ranging from 12 to 53 days are available. For more information, contact a professional travel agent, call 1-877-SAIL-HAL (1-877-724-5425) or visit

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KISS & Sixthman Announce The KISS Kruise: Wet, Wild, & Rockin'

ATLANTA, GA: Rock legends KISS have partnered with Sixthman to create the ultimate fan experience - The KISS Kruise: Wet, Wild, & Rockin'. The KISS festival at sea will take place on Carnival Destiny from Oct 13 through 17, 2011. KISS and fans will rock from Miami, Fl., to Half Moon Cay and Nassau, Bahamas.

Guests on The KISS Kruise will take a photo with the band and enjoy one big outdoor show - acoustic, with no makeup - and one indoor show in the ship's main theater. In addition to live performances by the hottest band in the world, the cruise will include a Q&A with the band, participation the biggest Halloween party the ocean has ever seen, games, theme nights, and other rowdy onboard activities. KISS will be inviting other musical acts to join them so fans can rock and roll all night and party every day.

KISS ARMY members will have first shot at booking, and will need to sign up for pre-sale before midnight on May 22, 2011. All other fans can sign up for pre-sale before midnight on May 30, 2011, to participate in the pre-sale and have priority access to the best cabins and best seats for the indoor shows. Cabins go on sale to the public on June 7, 2011. Prices include entertainment, meals, and access to many Carnival amenities. Fans can read more and sign up for presale at

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Seabourn 'Europe Suite Sale' Aims to Drive Business to Agents for 2011 Cruises

SEATTLE, May 16: Just in time for the popular summer European travel season, Seabourn is launching a "Europe Suite Sale" on 2011 summer and fall departures aboard its award-winning fleet of intimate ships, urging travelers to contact their travel agents and explore the full range of Europe's majestic treasures and historic cities from Turkey to the Greek Isles and along the Dalmatian Coast. To qualify, cruises must be booked by June 30, 2011. Fares start from $2,499 per person for seven days, representing savings of 50 percent or more.

"Our entire fleet will be sailing in Europe this summer, visiting the continent's most desirable destinations," said John Delaney, Seabourn's Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. "Agents should take a good look at the variety of cruises and departures on our Europe Suite Sale, and then contact their clients about these offers. It's a great opportunity for agents to book their clients on a Seabourn cruise and expand their business this year and into the future."

Agents should be alert to the efforts Seabourn is making to drive their clients' responses. There will be three weekly email blasts to consumers-- both past guests and prospects-- starting Monday, May 16. The sale will be featured on Seabourn's Facebook page. In addition, banner ads will appear on websites such as;;; and At, travel agents can find customizable HTML emails that they can send to their own client email lists. Direct mail brochures will also mail the third week in May.

Seabourn's Europe Suite Sale includes savings on the line's newest ship, the 450-guest Seabourn Quest, which will enter service June 20, 2011. Along with its sister ship, Seabourn Odyssey, both ships will sail the waters of the Eastern Mediterranean, operating alternating cruises to popular destinations and beautiful towns in the Greek Isles, Turkey and along the stunning Dalmatian and Adriatic coasts.

To take advantage of these fares, guests must book by June 30, 2011. Rates are based on double occupancy, are subject to space available and may increase. Certain other restrictions apply. For more information, call Seabourn at 1-800-929-9391 or visit

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Cunard Line Presents Intriguing 2011 Insights Program

May 12: With a luxury cruise vacation aboard Cunard Line, not only can guests experience The New Golden Age of Ocean Travel, they may also pique their intellectual curiosity through a variety of special presentations offered by Cunard Insights. The award-winning guest enrichment program continues in 2011 aboard the youngest fleet at sea, where guests are able to learn more about politics, entertainment, literature, science and history through renowned speakers from these and other world disciplines. Featured Insights speakers range from former vice president and editor-in-chief of Daily Variety Peter Bart, legendary British crime novelists P.D. James and Baroness Ruth Rendell CBE; to The Byrds musician Roger McGuinn and debut novelist Kitty Pilgrim, a former CNN correspondent turned novelist who features Cunard’s Queen Victoria in her debut thriller.

“A highlight of any Cunard voyage is our Insights program, providing guests with dynamic enrichment opportunities to engage their minds and passions, while enjoying the timeless experience of sailing aboard our liners,” said Peter Shanks, president of Cunard Line. “This year’s speaker line-up certainly will appeal to a broad range of interests, giving guests a chance to update on favorite subjects as well as learn about something new.”

Delving deeply into a variety of compelling and relevant topics, Cunard Insights introduces guests to fascinating experts and accomplished visionaries who reflect the Line's legacy of adventure and prestige. Intellectually invigorating experiences aboard flagship Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria and the Line’s newest ship, Queen Elizabeth, will include the following:

Entertaining Insights:
May 10 – Peter Bart: As long-time vice president and editor-in-chief of Daily Variety, Bart presided over the editorial content for the Los Angeles and Gotham editions, Weekly Variety and For the last six years he has co-hosted the long-running, weekly AMC television program “Shootout.” Bart has also written eight books, most recently Boffo! How I Learned to Love the Blockbuster and Fear the Bomb. Bart is currently sailing a Westbound Transatlantic Crossing aboard Queen Mary 2.

Oct 7 & Nov 10 – Roger McGuinn: An American singer, songwriter and guitarist, McGuinn is most famous for fronting the popular 1960s band, The Byrds. McGuinn will sail an Eastbound and Westbound Transatlantic Crossing aboard Queen Mary 2.

Educational Insights:
June 10 – Dr. Ruth Weistheimer: Best known as “Dr. Ruth,” Weistheimer is a psychosexual therapist who pioneered speaking frankly about sexual matters with her radio program, “Sexually Speaking,” in 1980. She currently serves as the Honorary President of the Council on Sexuality and Aging at the National Sexuality Resource Center. Dr. Ruth will sail the Grand Fjords & Waterfalls voyage on Queen Mary 2.

July 20 & Sept 5 – Bill Miller: Known as “Mr. Ocean Liner,” Miller has written more than 70 books about passenger ships, both past and present. He has prepared the passenger ship database for the Ellis Island Museum and currently serves as curator of 20th Century Maritime History for the South Street Seaport Museum in New York City. Miller will sail an Eastbound and Westbound Transatlantic Crossing aboard Queen Mary 2.

Aug 15 – Dr. Jeffrey Hoffman: As a NASA astronaut, Hoffman made five space flights, becoming the first astronaut to log 1,000 hours of flight time aboard the Space Shuttle. He is now Professor of Aerospace Engineering in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Hoffman will be sailing a Westbound Transatlantic Crossing aboard Queen Mary 2.

Literary Insights:
June 5 – P.D. James: British crime novelist and longtime Cunarder, James is most celebrated for her 14 novels featuring the character “Commander Adam Dalgliesh,” of which 12 have been adapted for British television. James will be sailing the Mediterranean Mosaic voyage aboard Queen Victoria.

Sept 21 – Kitty Pilgrim: As a correspondent for CNN for 24 years, Pilgrim will discuss how the adventures she experienced as a news journalist paved the way to her becoming a fiction writer. Her upcoming debut novel, The Explorer’s Code, will be released on 5 July and includes the protagonists sailing on a Queen Victoria Mediterranean voyage, similar to the ship’s Greek Isles & Ancient Wonders voyage aboard which Pilgrim will sail.

Sept 5 – Baroness Ruth Rendell CBE: Bestselling mystery author, who also writes under the pseudonym Barbara Vine, has penned more than 60 novels and is best known for weaving tales about iconic character, “Chief Inspector Wexford.” She and her friend, fellow novelist P.D. James, have been credited with reshaping the mystery and detective genre of novels. Rendell will sail an Eastbound Transatlantic Crossing on Queen Mary 2.

Diplomatic Insights:
July 8 – Lord Digby Jones: Former Minister of State for U.K. Trade and Investment, Jones currently serves as Chairman of the International Business Advisory Board at HSBC, Chairman of Triumph Motorcycles Limited, and is Corporate Ambassador for Jaguar Cars and J.C. Bamford. Jones will sail on the Mediterranean Gems voyage aboard Queen Victoria.

Aug 14 – Lord Jeffrey Archer: Hailed by Time Magazine as a “master entertainer,” Archer is a former member of Parliament and best-selling author. He is currently working on a five-part series of novels entitled The Clifton Chronicles. Archer will sail on the St. Petersburg & Baltic Explorer voyage aboard Queen Elizabeth.

July 20 – Chase Untermeyer: Untermeyer’s 35-year political career spans all four levels of the U.S. Government. He has served in the Texas House of Representatives as executive assistant to then-Vice President George H.W. Bush, Assistant Secretary of the Navy, senior White House aide, director of the Voice of America and U.S. ambassador to the State of Qatar. He is currently a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Texas Ethics Commission. Untermeyer will sail on a Westbound Transatlantic Crossing aboard Queen Mary 2 as part of the Special Relationship program, a dedicated series within Insights that focuses on the close political and cultural ties between the United States and the United Kingdom.

These 2011 Cunard Insights speakers join Cunard's illustrious legacy of welcoming world-famous guests, experts, presenters and entertainers on board; including Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Buzz Aldrin, James Taylor, Jean Chatzky, Tina Brown, Baz Luhrmann, Bill Bryson, Rona Barrett and E.L. Doctorow. For more information about Cunard Insights, Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria or Queen Elizabeth, or to book a voyage, consult your travel agent, call toll-free 1-800-7-CUNARD or go to

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Oceania Cruises Puts Fall/Winter 2011, Select 2012 Grand Voyages On Sale

Miami, May 12: Oceania Cruises has announced unprecedented savings on select 2011 and 2012 departures. Travelers can save up to 75 percent on 18 cruises, all of which include free airfare from 22 North American cities. The high-value promotion includes eight Mediterranean cruises from Sept through Nov as well as longer fall voyages that visit South America and South Africa. Closer to home, two Panama Canal passages and a 12-day Caribbean cruise are featured. The latter voyage is a round-trip from Miami aboard Oceania Cruises’ stunning new Marina, departing Dec 10.

Select sailings in 2012 include a grand South America cruise from Rio de Janeiro around Cape Horn to Valparaiso, Chile; two Asia cruises and voyages that transit the Suez and Panama canals.

In total, the line is offering 18 cruises from 10 to 35 days, with savings on starting prices that include round-trip Economy Class air.

“Rarely have consumers had the opportunity to enjoy the Oceania Cruises Experience at such affordable fares,” stated James Rodriguez, the line’s senior vice president of sales and marketing. “The rising cost of an airline ticket makes our free air promotion a better value than at any time in our history.”

The destination cruise specialists at Oceania Cruises are renowned for intriguing itineraries, gourmet cuisine and gracious and friendly service onboard elegant, mid-size ships. For more information, visit To make a reservation, see your travel agent or call toll-free 800-531-5658.

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Norwegian Epic’s Entertainment Gets Bigger For Inaugural Season In Europe

MIAMI, May 12: Norwegian Cruise Line continues to change the face of cruise ship entertainment with Norwegian Epic, its largest and most innovative Freestyle Cruising ship ever, by adding new entertainment to appeal to an international audience for her inaugural season in Europe. The award-winning Norwegian Epic will also continue to offer the popular Blue Man Group; Cirque Dreams™ & Dinner; Legends in Concert; Howl at the Moon Dueling Pianos Show; Slam Allen Blues Band*; and Nickelodeon™ on every sailing.

“Norwegian Epic has taken cruise ship entertainment to a new level with world-class performances and multiple entertainment options,” said Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line’s chief executive officer. “We had such a popular response during Epic’s inaugural season that we wanted to customize the entertainment to fit the broader, international audiences for her first season in Europe.”

Headliner’s Comedy and Musical Acts
Four unique performances will replace The Second City Comedy Troupe in Headliner’s Comedy Club. Three of the four 45-minute shows will be offered each week.

Lost Locos Ole! is a fast paced Latin music comedy features three Latin Machos who duel with their ingenious slapstick, manic comedy and flamenco guitars. The show promises pop musical parodies, musical performances ranging from Flamenco to rock, dancing from salsa to swing, all ending in a Grande Fiesta. The comedy has won accolades and been described as funny, unpredictable and spectacular.

Stephen Sorrentino, a talented musical comedian and impressionist, comes straight from Las Vegas to perform Voices in My Head, an act that has earned him the title of “Male Impressionist of the Year” by the International Guild of Celebrity Impersonators and Tribute Acts. His performance, appropriate for guests of all ages, showcases Stephen’s ability to impersonate over 180 different voices and play numerous musical instruments.

The Maestranza Spanish Ballet mixes the influences of Arabic and flamenco dance with Spanish techniques to create a sophisticated performance. The Flamenco guitarist, along with traditional Spanish castanets, provides the rhythm for the three Flamenco dancers. The performers in their colorful costumes lead the audience on a journey of passion.

The Extraordinary Voyage is a musical comedy marionette show that tells the story of a jealous husband and his beautiful wife through Mexican songs and Spanish flamenco. The “Cabaret on Stings” is performed by only two people and ends with a grand finale of 19 marionettes performing in a gypsy-like choir.

Beatles Tribute
A brand new addition to Norwegian Epic’s line-up of entertainment, the Beatles Tribute, an internationally acclaimed concert, provides guests with an authentic live performance using all original instruments. The 45-minute show will take place in the ship’s outdoor venue, Spice H20, giving guests the chance to experience an evening summer concert three nights per cruise. The tribute band will perform popular hits such as “Let it Be,” “Yesterday,” and “A Hard Day’s Night,” as they journey through the ten years of the world phenomena that was the Beatles.

Blue Man Group
Blue Man Group is best known for their wildly popular theatrical shows and concerts which combine music, comedy and multimedia theatrics to produce a totally unique form of entertainment. The blissful party atmosphere created at their live events has become the trademark of a Blue Man Group experience and is now performed for the first time ever at sea only on Norwegian Epic. The group performs eight 75-minute shows during a seven-day cruise in the ship's Epic Theater.

Cirque Dreams™ & Dinner
Famed producer/director Neil Goldberg created Cirque Dreams & Dinner solely for the Spiegel Tent, the only "big top" at sea. This one-of -a-kind, interactive entertainment and dining experience is performed in the air, while juggling dinner courses with music, mayhem and acrobatic imagination. During this two-hour show, guests marvel in amazement and become part of a celebration of spectacle and fantasy. The entire experience, available eleven shows of each sailing, is unlike anything at sea.

Legends in Concert
Internationally acclaimed Legends In Concert is known as the pioneer of live celebrity impersonator shows and possesses the greatest collection of celebrity tribute artists ever assembled. For the European season, tribute artists include Shakira, Whitney Houston and Elton John. The three celebrity tribute performers take the stage in the ship's Epic Theater for six 45-minute live shows over three days during a seven-day cruise. In addition, an “unplugged” show is performed on three additional nights in the Manhattan Room, the ship's New York-inspired supper club, providing an unprecedented dining and entertainment experience on Norwegian Epic.

Howl at the Moon Dueling Pianos Show
Performing four times per cruise in Headliners, Norwegian Epic’s comedy club, Howl at the Moon is a total entertainment experience where the talented piano players not only entertain the guests; the guests become part of the show. The fun is centered around two baby grand pianos and a full out rock show with Howl’s entertainers playing the best music from 70’s rock to hip-hop for four hours per show. Howl at the Moon, with multiple locations across the United States, encourages people to live out their inner rock star, so guests should be ready to clap, sing, dance and howl.

Slam Allen Blues Band
Slam Allen Blues Band continues to jam out on Norwegian Epic as the official Fat Cats house blues band. Slam Allen first appeared on Norwegian Epic during the ship’s inaugural launch in June, 2010 and has since become a staple. With Slam at the helm, the band develops an incredible rapport with guests and other entertainers on board in four hour-long jam sessions six nights per cruise. Slam Allen will be on a brief hiatus from July 17 through August 28, 2011. During this time, Roadside Louie and the Dusters, a Memphis-based blues band personally selected by Slam, will play in Fat Cats.

Nickelodeon Family Entertainment
Each cruise features live Nickelodeon-themed interactive shows, including: SlimeTime LIVE!; Breakfast with Nickelodeon; Nick Live Poolside entertainment; Nick-themed dance parties and opportunities for kids to visit with their favorite Nick characters.

So that guests are ensured of seeing the incredible entertainment on board, Norwegian has created advanced, online ticketing for many of these performances including Blue Man Group, Cirque Dreams & Dinner, Legends in Concert, Headliner’s Comedy and Musical Acts (one advance booking per cruise), Nickelodeon Slime Time Live!, and Breakfast with Nickelodeon. Booked guests can go to the Norwegian website,, log in to the "My NCL" section and visit a special entertainment page where they can select and reserve their desired performance. Guests may make a reservation for each show once per sailing. Online reservations for entertainment open 45 days prior to a sailing date.

Norwegian Epic will sail from Barcelona, Spain from May 22 through Oct 23, 2011. Guests will have the opportunity to visit Florence (Livorno), Italy; Rome (Civitavecchia), Italy; Naples, Italy; and Palma, Majorca, Spain, as well as enjoy two relaxing days at sea. To book a cruise on Norwegian Epic, visit; call 888-NCL-CRUISE (625-2784); or contact a travel professional.

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First-Ever TCM Classic Cruise To Set Sail

Classic film fans can begin signing up today for the first-ever TCM Classic Cruise, a new one-of-a-kind event. The TCM Classic Cruise is a partnership between Turner Classic Movies (TCM) and Sixthman, the industry leader in theme cruises. The event is scheduled for Dec. 8-12, 2011 aboard Celebrity Millennium. The four-night cruise will sail from Miami to Key West and Cozumel.

The TCM Classic Cruise will include live appearances by Hollywood legends, as well as exclusive events with TCM primetime host Robert Osborne and TCM weekend-daytime host Ben Mankiewicz. Guests will enjoy a variety of movie-themed events, including screenings, panel discussions, trivia contests and parties. Additional details will be announced in the weeks and months ahead.

"TCM is such a great network because it brings together a community of fans who share a love of classic film," Osborne said. "We're excited to invite them aboard the network's first-ever cruise for what promises to be a very fun and unique experience."

Sixthman specializes in bringing like-minded people together on vacation and recently completed its 35th full-ship charter. "We are excited to go to sea with TCM and its terrific fans," said Sixthman Founder and CEO Andy Levine said. "The TCM Classic Cruise will bring TCM's fan community together to celebrate their passion for classic films."

Celebrity Millennium accommodates more than 2,000 passengers in 1,017 staterooms, 80% of which feature an ocean view. Guests can visit or call (877) 223-7030 for more information and to sign up for the pre-sale. Cabins go on sale publicly June 1. Prices include meals, entertainment and onboard activities.

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Chef Kathryn Kelly Joins Oceania Cruises As Culinary Enrichment Director

Miami, May 11: Oceania Cruises has named Kathryn Kelly as culinary enrichment director. In this newly created position she is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the Bon Appétit Culinary Center, the first hands-on cooking school at sea. The Culinary Center debuted onboard the line’s new Marina in January 2011 and will also be featured on her sister ship, Riviera, launching in April 2012. Previously executive chef of the Culinary Center, Chef Kelly will now develop the curriculum, recruit instructors and guest chefs, as well as integrate cooking classes with the shore excursion program, in addition to teaching classes.

“We are pleased to have Chef Kelly accept this new role with Oceania Cruises,” said Bruce Himelstein, president of Oceania Cruises. “Her success overseeing the culinary center on Marina will now be realized on Riviera and transcend our entire fleet.”

Chef Kelly’s love of cooking began in her grandmothers’ kitchens. She was awarded a scholarship from Pillsbury as a “promising young chef” and subsequently worked her way through college at Seattle’s prestigious Northwest Passage restaurant, where she discovered the bounty of the Pacific Northwest. After a fulfilling career that included founding one of the earliest healthcare software ventures, leading a multi-billion dollar global outsourcing company and being named one of the Top Female Executives by the YWCA, Chef Kelly returned to her passion, cooking.

Back in the kitchen, Kelly joined the famed culinary team of SALT at the Ritz Carlton, Amelia Island. She then enrolled and graduated with honors from the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) where she continues to serve as an advisor and culinary instructor for their “Healthy Kitchens Healthy Lives” project with the Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Public Health. She is also a Fellow of the CIA. Kelly has completed her ProChef certification from the American Culinary Foundation and is a member of the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, Women Chefs and Restaurateurs and Chefs for Sustainable Agriculture. She holds two master’s degrees in Public Health and Community Medicine and completed her doctoral studies in epidemiology from the Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health.

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Windstar Cruises Unveils New 2012 Collection of Luxury Sailings

SEATTLE, May 11: Windstar Cruises, which operates a three-ship fleet of luxury yachts that explore hidden harbors and secluded coves of the world's most treasured destinations, unveils its new 2012 collection of luxury sailing voyages in the Caribbean, Costa Rica, Baltic, Italy, Mediterranean, Greek Isles and Transatlantic Crossing. Windstar's new 2012 collection of luxury sailing voyages visit enchanting destinations and provide unforgettable experiences at exceptional values. In addition to receiving the lowest introductory pricing in years, guests who book by June 30, 2011, receive a $200 shipboard credit per cabin. Windstar's Foremast Members receive an additional 5% discount on all itineraries.

New 2012 Collection of Luxury Sailings
Flavors of the Caribbean: Features a unique collection of islands highlighting diverse countries, styles, landscapes and cultures of the Caribbean. Seven-day sailings on Wind Surf from Philipsburg, St. Maarten to Philipsburg, St. Maarten visit Le Marin, Martinique; Pigeon Island, St. Lucia; Roseau, Dominica; Falmouth Harbour, Antigua; and Gustavia, St. Barts. Departures: Dec 31, 2011; Jan 14, 28; Feb 11, 25; and March 10, 24, 2012.

Passage Through Panama: Natural and manmade wonders unite on an exotic voyage encompassing Costa Rica's Pacific Coast, islands of Panama and a transit through the Panama Canal. Seven-day sailings on Wind Star from Puerto Caldera, Costa Rica to Colon, Panama visit Bahia Drake, Costa Rica; Golfito, Costa Rica; Isla de Coiba, Panama; Panama Canal Transit; and San Blas, Panama. Departures: Dec 31, 2011; Jan 7, 21, 28; Feb 11; and Mar 24, 2012.

Treasures of Northern Europe: Discover six of Northern Europe's most captivating countries. Eleven-day sailings on Wind Surf between Lisbon, Portugal and Oslo, Norway visit Le Havre, France; Dover, Great Britain; Antwerp, Belgium; and Amsterdam, Netherlands. Departures: July 16 and Aug 26, 2012.

Capitals of Scandinavia: Explore the capital cities of Scandinavia while sailing from sea to sea. Seven-day sailings on Wind Surf between Oslo, Norway to Stockholm, Sweden visit Stromstad, Sweden; Copenhagen, Denmark; Rugen, Germany; and Bornholm, Denmark. Departures: Jul 27 and Aug 19, 2012.

Best of the Baltic: East and West convergence of Baltic culture, architecture and history highlighted by an overnight in St. Petersburg, Russia. Eight-day sailings on Wind Surf from Stockholm, Sweden to Stockholm, Sweden visit Mariehamn, Finland; St. Petersburg, Russia (overnight); Helsinki, Finland; Tallinn, Estonia; and Sandhamn, Sweden. Departures: Aug 3 and 11, 2012.

Islands of Italy: Experience classic Rome and the unspoiled, intimate islands popular with Italian locals. Seven-day sailings on Wind Spirit, Wind Star and Wind Surf from Rome to Rome visit Ischia, Italy; Sorrento, Italy; Lipari, Italy; scenic cruising by Stromboli, Italy; Porto Cervo, Italy; and Porto Vecchio, France. Departures: Apr 21, 28; Aug 4; and Oct 6, 2012.

Classic Mediterranean: Discover the ancient wonders and modern lifestyles of classic Greek and Italian cities. Seven- and eight-day sailings on Wind Spirit and Wind Star between Rome (Civitavecchia), Italy and Athens (Piraeus), Greece visit Ischia, Italy; Sorrento, Italy; Lipari, Italy; Giardini Naxos, Italy; Gythion, Greece; and Monemvasia, Greece. Departures: Apr 28; Jul 7; Aug 11; Oct 27; and Nov 3, 2012.

Greek Isles & the Mysteries of Malta: A true microcosm of the Mediterranean - Greek, Italian, and Arabic and North African influences are artfully represented in the architecture, cuisine and culture of this journey. Seven-day sailings on Wind Spirit between Athens (Piraeus), Greece and Valletta, Malta visiting Gythion, Greece; Argostoli/Cephalonia, Greece; Butrint National Park, Albania; Siracusa, Italy; and Gozo, Malta. Departures: Jun 30; Jul 7; Aug 11, 18; and Oct 20 and 27, 2012.

Transatlantic Crossing: Sail across the Atlantic Ocean reconnecting, recharging and indulging in Windstar luxury on a twenty-one day journey on Wind Star from Colon, Panama, to Hamilton, Bermuda and ending in Lisbon, Portugal. Departure: Mar 31, 2012.

Windstar's 2012 voyages are available to book now. For more information on Windstar's 2012 itineraries, please visit or call 1-800-258-7245.

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Snowbird Relocation 12-Night Cruise with MSC from the Big Apple to the Sunshine State this Fall

FORT LAUDERDALE, FL, May 10: Set sail on a spectacular, 12-night positioning cruise from New York City departing on MSC Poesia Oct. 29 to the beautiful waters of the Caribbean and disembarking in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on Nov. 10--the official start of MSC’s Caribbean cruise season. Snowbirds relocating from the Northeast to the Sunshine State for the winter can take advantage of this “Colors of the Caribbean” cruise calling in Ochos Rios, Jamaica; Cristobal, Panama; Puerto Limon, Costa Rica; and Cozumel, Mexico. According to MSC Cruises’ North American president and chief-executive-officer, Rick Sasso, this cruise is a feasible option for those travelling to Florida for the season and others just seeking a cruise vacation.

“Not only is a cruise one of the most cost-effective vacations to travel in style, but for snowbirds relocating to Florida for the winter, this itinerary provides a worry-free option by avoiding airlines, baggage fees, and other inconveniences allowing them to make the most of their journey south,” said Sasso.

Other Eastern, Western, and Southern Caribbean cruise itineraries for roundtrip sailings from Fort Lauderdale include: Key West, Florida; Nassau, Bahamas; Costa Maya, Mexico; Cozumel, Mexico; Roatan, Roatan Island, Honduras; Montego Bay, Jamaica; St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands; San Juan, Puerto Rico; Willemstad, Curacao; Oranjestad, Aruba; Cartagena, Colombia; Cristobal, Panama; St. John’s, Antigua; Saint George’s, Grenada; Fort-de-France, Martinique; and Philipsburg, St. Maarten.

MSC Poesia features 1,275 staterooms (with 80 percent oceanview and 827 with private balconies); the luxurious MSC Aurea Spa for the ultimate in pampering, health and wellness; four main restaurants (including the Kaito Sushi bar and L’Obelisco specialty restaurant with both Italian and international cuisine); 12 bars and lounges; a children’s play area with a Stone Age theme – and more. For more information, visit, call 877-665-4655, or contact a travel professional.

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The World’s Best Visits London, Another First For SeaDream Yacht Club

Miami, FL: The afternoon of Saturday May 7, 2011 saw the stylish, 112-guest mega yacht SeaDream I arrive in London for the very first time, mooring alongside the HMS Belfast at Tower Bridge. For two days – Sunday, May 8 and Monday, May 9 - SeaDream Yacht Club showcased SeaDream I to over 400 UK travel industry professionals and the media, with a series of exclusive invitational events. Says SeaDream’s President, Bob Lepisto: “Bringing SeaDream I to the UK was a long-held dream of both mine and the Owner/Chairman, Atle Brynestad… and to bring her to the pool of London over such a sunny weekend has been an absolute delight. Her arrival and departure were also greeted with much enthusiasm by crowds of well-wishers and tourists who crammed the towpaths and piazzas around the Tower of London and St Katherine’s Dock, making our visit all the more special.”

Each vessel (SeaDream I, SeaDream II) has just 56 staterooms, a crew of 95 and the two yachts are the only locations at sea to be certified members of the Thai Spa Association; and to have outside open-seating a la carte restaurants able to accommodate every guest, not just a privileged few. Voyage-only fares are inclusive of open bar, complimentary champagne, wines with lunch and dinner, use of recreational and water sports equipment (subject to local conditions) and gratuities. For more information, contact 800-707-4911 or .

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Celebrity Cruises Partners With ArtCenter/South Florida to Offer Creative,
Interactive Program Led by Master Artists

MIAMI, May 9: Celebrity Cruises has long been recognized for its vast, exceptional collection of contemporary art. With hundreds of original works by both recognized and emerging artists exhibited on every ship in the fleet, and the recent introduction of self-guided tours on an iPad(TM), Celebrity aims to offer guests who appreciate art ample opportunities to enjoy it. And now, the line is offering an opportunity for guests to create original works of their own, within one of the entirely new venues on Celebrity Silhouette, "The Art Studio." Located within the distinctive Lawn Club area on the top deck of Celebrity's newest ship, The Art Studio will offer guests a wide variety of lectures, demonstrations and interactive classes ranging from jewelry creation to sketching to painting, all led by master artists, through Celebrity's new partnership with ArtCenter/South Florida.

When Celebrity Silhouette debuts in July of this year, and throughout the ship's European season, guests will have the opportunity to participate in interactive sessions with two master artists sourced through the brand's new partnership with ArtCenter/South Florida: Leslie LaCombe and Armando Droulers.

-- Leslie LaCombe worked in the art departments of film and television for many years. She then studied silver jewelry design with accomplished artist Billy King in Mexico, and soon found her work on display at a prominent local gallery. She has traveled extensively in Southeast Asia, India and Europe, with the various cultures inspiring many of her works. Today, LaCombe resides in Miami, teaches at ArtCenter/South Florida, and continues to produce handcrafted precious stone and metal jewelry in her studio located on Miami's famed South Beach.
-- Armando Droulers is an art historian, artist and educator who studied at Bard College, Academia de Arte Federico Brandt, New World School of the Arts, and the University of South Florida. He lectures extensively on art and culture, and also organizes art tours and cultural events across the globe. Droulers has lived in Europe, the Middle East, Latin America and the U.S., and speaks fluent English, Spanish and French. On Celebrity Silhouette, Droulers will teach drawing, watercolor and collage classes, offer presentations on the history and art of the destinations the ship visits, and will lead art and wine lectures in the ship's sophisticated CellarMasters wine bar, and sketching courses in various ports of call.

Celebrity Silhouette is one of five sleek Celebrity ships offering premium vacation options in Europe this year, from six cosmopolitan departure ports. CelebritySilhouette sets sail in July, enhancing guests' precious vacation time with a host of industry-first venues and experiences within The Lawn Club. In addition to The Art Studio, the new venues include the interactive "Lawn Club Grill," where guests can select and grill their own meats side-by-side with Celebrity's expert chefs, or have them cooked to order; the relaxing, private, wi-fi-equipped cabanas called "The Alcoves," and "The Porch," a breezy, casual dining spot offering sandwiches, coffees and captivating views of the sea and the ship's lush lawn. Celebrity Silhouette also will present another entirely new venue, "The Hideaway," an intimate, quiet space reminiscent of a childhood tree house.

Opened in 1984, ArtCenter/South Florida is an established access point for well-known and emerging artists and curators. As a Miami-Dade, Florida-based non-profit, the mission is to advance the knowledge and practice of contemporary visual art and culture in the Miami-Dade area. The educational branch offers 125 classes annually for all skill levels, provides summer Art Camp for Kids and is involved in extensive community outreach. Its Lincoln Road location in Miami affords the Center and all of its programs a high level of visibility.

Celebrity Cruises' iconic "X" is the mark of the world's top-rated premium cruise line, with spacious, stylish interiors; dining experiences elevated to an art form; personalized service, with a guest-to-staff ratio of nearly 2:1; unexpected, trendsetting onboard activities, all designed to provide an unmatchable experience for vacationers' precious time. Celebrity sails to Alaska, Australia/New Zealand, Bermuda, California, Canada/New England, the Caribbean, Europe, Hawaii, the Pacific Coast, Panama Canal, South America, and year-round in the Galapagos Islands. Celebrity also offers immersive cruisetour experiences in Alaska, Australia/New Zealand, Canada, Europe and South America. One of the fastest-growing major cruise lines, Celebrity's fleet currently consists of nine ships, with two additional Solstice Class ships scheduled to join the fleet: Celebrity Silhouette in July 2011, and Celebrity Reflection in Fall 2012. For more information, dial 1-800-437-3111, visit or call your travel agent.

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Crystal Spices Up Southern European Cruises With More Culinary Excursions

LOS ANGELES, May 9: Ever the gourmand cruise line, this fall Crystal Cruises has cooked up more than 30 experiences throughout southern Europe that will give intimate and savory insights into the diversity of the area's culinary cultures. New and favorite Crystal Adventure highlights include:

Cooking Lessons/Classes, with tasting and occasional market shopping, will cover:

-- Spanish tapas (Barcelona)
-- Romanian "sarmale cu mamaliguta" (Constanta)
-- Cycladic island fare (Megalochori/Santorini)
-- Turkish meze (Istanbul)
-- Croatian honey-sauteed prawns and feta cheese-stuffed calamari (Cavtat/Dubrovnik)
-- French flower-based dishes (Pont-du-Loup/Cannes)
-- Aristocratic Italian taught by a Countess in stunning Tiepolo Palace (Venice)

Wine Tasting, Viticultural activities will abound in:

-- Tuscany/Livorno-Taste local reds and olive oil at a 700-year-old estate owned by the family behind Vespa scooters.
-- Yalta-Sip exquisite, perhaps royal, wines at Massandra Winery--the world's largest wine collection, founded by Russia's winemaking "forefather," Prince Leo Golitsyn.
-- Spain-Explore medieval, underground wine caves, followed by Valencian wine-tasting.
-- Odessa-Inhale a sensory wine and food experience at Shabo Wine Culture Center.
-- Greece-Learn why the Robola Winery has a worldwide following.
-- Romania-Sip award-winning wines on par with France's Champagne region.

Traditional Meals Inside Local Home, Guests may further:

-- Devour brochettes, pasta, or grappa inside Italian farmhouses
-- Be an honored guest at a traditional Romanian barbeque
-- Dance traditional Greek Sirtaki at lunch at a stone mansion outside Olympia

Historical and Educational Explorations, Additional gastronomic opportunities include:

-- Biking the forgotten dirt roads of farmers and winemakers in Croatia's Konavle Valley
-- Sampling world-famous Ston oysters outside Dubrovnik
-- Tasting the Imperial family's favorite recipes at Yalta's Livadia Palace
-- Touring a Turkish tea plantation in Trabzon

The newly-redesigned Crystal Serenity will sail waters from the Canary Islands all the way to Israel and the Ukraine from early August through December. Complimentary shipboard classes with regional guest chefs, wine experts, and mixologists will also be offered on three "Wine and Food"-themed cruises through the area on 8/2, 10/1, and 10/24. Crystal Cruises' extensive, innovative culinary choices include the ultra-luxury line's coveted cheese and wine cellars, overseen by on-board, certified sommeliers. New "Open Dining by Reservation" adds more flexibility and options to evening dining. For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit

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Blythe Danner Will be Seabourn Quest's Godmother

SEATTLE, May 9: One of America's most beautiful, intelligent and respected actors will do the honors as godmother to the intimate, all-suite Seabourn Quest when it is named at the port of Barcelona on June 20, 2011. Blythe Danner will preside over a glittering sunset ceremony in the Spanish Mediterranean city's harbor, attended by the ship's guests and crew, prior to its departure on a 14-day Maiden Voyage to Athens, Greece.

"Blythe Danner perfectly embodies the blend of style and sophistication, of emotional depth with a unique sense of fun that sparks the social atmosphere on board a Seabourn ship," says Richard Meadows, Seabourn's President. "We couldn't be more thrilled to have her officially name our newest ship."

Blythe Danner earned a Tony Award for her Broadway debut in Butterflies Are Free (which originated at Westport Country Playhouse) and has received nominations for her roles in Harold Pinter's Betrayal,A Streetcar Named Desire and Stephen Sondheim's Follies. On television she won two Emmy Awards for her role on Showtime's "Huff" and was nominated twice for "Will and Grace" and for Joyce Carol Oates' "We Were the Mulvaneys." She received a Golden Globe nomination for Anne Tyler's "Back When We Were Grownups." Her film roles include Woody Allen's Alice, The Great Santini, Meet the Parents, Meet the Fockers, Mr. and Mrs. Bridge with Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman, and Sylvia with her daughter Gwyneth Paltrow. She holds honorary doctorates from Williams College, Hobart/William Smith College and her alma mater, Bard College. She has been involved with environmental issues for more than 35 years and serves on the advisory board of Union of Concerned Scientists, Environmental Media Association in L.A., Environmental Advocates in Albany, and Energy Visions in NYC. She also serves on Planned Parenthood's board of advocates and is a member of the advisory board of the Bruce Paltrow Fund at the Oral Cancer Foundation, named after her husband.

Seabourn Quest is the third iteration of the sleek and widely admired design that first appeared as Seabourn Odyssey in June 2009, and has been hailed as "a game-changer for the luxury segment." The second sister ship, Seabourn Sojourn, entered service in June of 2010. Seabourn Quest's maiden season includes seven-day Eastern Mediterranean cruises, operating alternately between Athens and Istanbul, and Venice and Athens, as well as a seven-day Black Sea voyage. On January 5, 2012, Seabourn Quest begins a 109-day World Cruise from Ft. Lauderdale to Venice on a unique eastbound course via South America, South Africa, the Indian Ocean, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, and the Mediterranean. For more information or reservations, contact a travel agent, call Seabourn at 1-800-929-9391 or visit

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Memorial Day Promotion From Carnival Allows Military Personnel to Book Up To Three
Fun Ship’ Staterooms at Discounted Rates

In honor of Memorial Day, Carnival Cruise Lines is offering a promotion throughout May that allows active and retired military personnel to book up to three “Fun Ship” staterooms at discounted rates for themselves and their friends and family members. Reservations must be made between now and May 31, 2011, to qualify for this special offer, which is available in conjunction with a variety of 3- to 8-day “Fun Ship” departures through April 30, 2013, including voyages to The Bahamas, Caribbean, and Mexico.

Rates start at $229 per person for three-day cruises; $259 per person for four-day cruises; $329 per person for five-day voyages; $379 per person for six-day departures; $459 per person for 7-day voyages; and $589 per person for 8-day sailings. Nine- to 12-day European voyages start at $879 per person. Voyages to the Caribbean, Mexico, Bahamas, Caribbean operate from 12 convenient North American homeports along the east and west coasts and Gulf of Mexico. Europe cruises depart from Barcelona, Spain. The promotion is valid for individual bookings only. Military personnel must provide proof of service. Eligible military personnel must sail to take advantage of this offer. Certain other restrictions apply.

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Victorious Stars to Sail on This Summer’s “Nickelodeon All Access Cruise” on Norwegian Epic

MIAMI – May 9: Nickelodeon and Norwegian Cruise Line have announced the addition of Daniella Monet and Leon Thomas III, stars of Nick’s hit live-action series Victorious, to the talent roster for this summer’s “Nickelodeon All Access Cruise.” Monet (Trina) and Thomas (Andre) will set sail aboard Norwegian Epic on July 24, 2011, joining iCarly’s Jennette McCurdy (Sam), and Nathan Kress (Freddie), as well as Tom Kenny, the voice of SpongeBob SquarePants. Departing from Barcelona, Spain, this seven-day cruise offers stops at ports of call in some of the most beautiful locales in the Mediterranean, including Florence/Pisa, Rome, and Naples, Italy; and Palma, Majorca, Spain.

Norwegian and Nickelodeon are providing families with a once-in-a-lifetime Mediterranean cruise vacation that offers a unique family entertainment experience on board Norwegian Cruise Line's newest, largest and most innovative cruise ship to date. On land, families can explore the ruins of the lost city of Pompeii, visit the world-famous aquarium on the island of Majorca, and take an excursion to the Leaning Tower of Pisa before ending the day on a beautiful Mediterranean beach. Only on the “Nickelodeon All Access Cruise,” families can enjoy Nickelodeon’s exclusive entertainment, including:

• An ultimate sliming experience that offers an opportunity for the whole family to get slimed together;
• Meet and greets with the stars of Nickelodeon’s hottest live-action shows including Jennette McCurdy and Nathan Kress from iCarly and Daniella Monet and Leon Thomas from Victorious;
• Special viewings and premieres of never-before-seen episodes of Nickelodeon’s hit TV shows like iCarly, Victorious and SpongeBob SquarePants;
• Meet and greets with popular Nickelodeon characters, including SpongeBob SquarePants, Dora the Explorer, Aang the Last Airbender and many more;
• Nickelodeon’s signature messy game shows like Slime Time LIVE! and poolside events;
• Breakfast with Nickelodeon characters every day of the cruise;
• Plus, families can enjoy the freedom and flexibility of Norwegian Cruise Line’s Freestyle Cruising®.  In addition to all of Nickelodeon’s top-notch entertainment offerings, the specialty cruise will also include Nick-themed Sailaway; Club Nick parties; and the opportunity for every family to get slimed.

To book the last “Nickelodeon All Access Cruise” of 2011 call Norwegian Cruise Line at 866-770-NICK (6425), visit, or contact a travel professional.

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Grand Princess Returns to Service After Princess Cruises' Most Extensive Drydock Ever

SANTA CLARITA, CA, May 6: Following the most extensive drydock in Princess Cruises history, today the first passengers set sail aboard the completely transformed Grand Princess in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. The ship's remarkable 24-day drydock that transformed it from top to bottom also made the vessel a media star with daily video updates that attracted more than a half million views. The Grand Princess Drydock Journal captured the dramatic process with 26 video updates plus more than 300 photos of the daily progress at the shipyard in the Bahamas, including the unforgettable removal of Skywalkers nightclub from the ship's stern and the complete demolition and rebuilding of the atrium to create the new Piazza. Hosted by Grand Princess Cruise Director Martyn Moss, the video series delved behind the scenes with reports on all aspects of the drydock process.

The video journal also offered different perspectives on the project with interviews of key players in the revitalization, including the ship's Captain Tony Herriott and Chief Technical Officer Gilberto Vinci, plus Senior Vice President of Technical Services John Gunner and Project Manager Steve Storey, who explained what it takes to coordinate 1,400 contractors working around the clock. The videos also shared such tidbits as the time it took to cut Skywalkers from the ship (10 hours) and the amount of new carpeting installed (about 50 square miles).

"This drydock has been a monumental effort, and we're very proud of the teamwork by everyone involved to create this sparkling 'new' ship ready to start a season of Europe sailings," said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises executive vice president. "We know our passengers will appreciate the updated decor, fresh new feel, and especially all the wonderful added features."

Now that the ship has been transformed, passengers will find a completely new Piazza atrium, several new eateries - including Alfredo's Pizzeria and the Crown Grill - and the line's first specialty tea lounge called Leaves. Also included in the renovation were seven new window suites; remodeled casino, boutiques and art gallery; enhancements to the Horizon Court, Lotus Spa, and wedding chapel; and the addition of Crooner's Martini Lounge. The new nightclub, The One5, that replaced Skywalkers, will open May 21.

The drydock video journal covered nearly every area involved in the refurbishment project, including work on the underside of the ship, upholstery work, engine control room, new shore power connection, lifeboat updates, new speakers for Movies Under the Stars, mural painting, theater renovations, and a report from the executive chef who was responsible for feeding all the contractors.

Grand Princess set sail today on a 16-day British Isles Passage voyage to its summer homeport of Southampton, England, from which it will sail a season European itineraries, including Mediterranean cruises and a number of shorter "Interlude" voyages. Additional information about Princess Cruises is available through a professional travel agent, by calling 1-800-PRINCESS, or by visiting the company's website at

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Silversea Publishes 2012 Voyage Brochure

Ft. Lauderdale, FL, May 5: Silversea has unveiled its new full-color, 200-page 2012 Voyages brochure. The visually captivating picture-book details over 200 itineraries exploring seven continents, over 100 countries, and more than 450 destinations. Plus, for the first time, the brochure features a Microsoft Tag 2D bar code on its back cover that enables smartphone users to view The World of Silversea, the company's exciting new video that invites travelers to step aboard and experience the award-winning luxury and pampering ambiance of Silversea.

"We're delighted to be able to offer travelers an engaging interactive experience by incorporating the latest mobile tagging technology in our new brochure," said Linda Schultes, Silversea's vice president of worldwide marketing. "Not only will you be able to read about the unique rewards of an all-inclusive, ultra-luxury cruise vacation, but by accessing our new video from your mobile phone, you'll get to see the experience come to life."

The 2012 Voyages brochure opens with an easy-to-read, voyage-by-voyage summary followed by a section revealing the hallmarks of Silversea's unique luxury lifestyle. The balance of the brochure provides detailed worldwide cruise itineraries by region, including highlights of shore excursions, descriptions of land programs, deck plans and general information. And new for 2012 is a pricing summary booklet inserted into the back cover pocket.

2012 Highlights:

Passport to Luxury: The company's popular "Passport to Luxury" promotion is available on all voyages in 2012, with the exception of Silver Explorer expedition cruises. The multi-tiered program provides an Onboard Spending Credit of up to $1,500 per suite ($750 per person).

World Cruise 2012: Silver Whisper will embark Jan 6 from Fort Lauderdale on her first-ever World Cruise, a remarkable 115-day journey that concludes in glamorous Monte Carlo. On this magnificent odyssey, her guests will visit 45 ports in 27 countries stretching from the Caribbean and South America to Africa, the Far East, Arabia and Europe. Along the way, they will enjoy multi-day stays in 13 major cities and exclusive insider access to seldom seen global treasures.

Grand Voyages: Created for the sophisticated traveler who has the time and passion to indulge in travel on a grand scale, this special collection offers extended voyages from 24 to 61 days. These unique odysseys combine the luxury of sailing aboard the line's elite, all-suite ships with expanded journeys to diverse regions of the world, featuring visits to must-see traditional ports, as well as exotic destinations that are off the beaten path -- all on one cruise.

West Africa Expeditions: Silversea has created three new West Africa expedition itineraries for 2012 that visit the once colonized northwest countries, travel along coastlines infamous for their historic role in the slave trade, and explore the southern waters where vast seabird colonies are sustained by the nutrient-rich upwelling of the icy Benguela current.

For a complimentary copy of the 2012 Voyages brochure, visit and click on the "ORDER A BROCHURE" tab or call toll-free (877) 215-9986.

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Paul Gauguin Cruises Announces 2012 Sailing Schedule

BELLEVUE, WA, May 5: Paul Gauguin Cruises, operator of the highest-rated and longest continually sailing luxury cruise ship in the South Pacific, the m/s Paul Gauguin, announces its 2012 sailing schedule, full of exciting new experiences and one-of-a-kind itineraries. The sailing schedule includes three new itineraries, as well as a number of special guest speakers and events. Additionally, guests will enjoy extraordinary savings--receiving 50% off standard cruise fares plus FREE airfare from Los Angeles.

2012 Sailing Schedule Highlights:

- South Pacific Discovery: Introducing a new 20-night hotel-and-cruise journey to Australia, New Caledonia, Fiji, Tonga, Cook & Society Islands. Departing January 23, 2012, guests enjoying the exclusive package are invited to explore the shores of nine distinctive islands in five archipelagos on a single voyage.

- Island of Whales: Departing September 1, 2012, the ship’s new Australs & Society Islands cruise sails to Rurutu, the “Island of Whales,” at the height of whale-watching season.

- Fiji, Tonga, Cook & Society Islands: Departing October 27, 2012, and November 20, 2012, The Gauguin sets sail on a new journey taking guests not only to the Cook and Society Islands, with their unique cultures and striking views, but also to the remote isles of legendary Fiji and intriguing Tonga.

- Culinary Sailings: Michelin-starred Chef Jean-Pierre Vigato will join the June 23, 2012, sailing to Tahiti & the Society Islands. As The Gauguin’s special guest, the famed Parisian chef will prepare gourmet dishes and offer demonstrations of his culinary techniques.

- Cousteau Sailings: Jean-Michel Cousteau will join The Gauguin on the July 11, 2012, sailing to the Society Islands & Tuamotus; the November 20, 2012, sailing to Fiji, Tonga, Cook & Society Islands; and the December 1, 2012, sailing to the Marquesas, Tuamotus & Society Islands. Mr. Cousteau will offer a series of lectures with videos of his work in the world’s oceans, as well as accompany several dives from the ship.

With an endless amount of innovative hotel programs and excursions, Paul Gauguin Cruises is the perfect luxury vacation to celebrate any occasion, all within the magical wonders of the South Pacific. For rates and reservations for Paul Gauguin Cruises, contact a professional travel agent, call 800-848-6172, or visit

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SeaDream Yacht Club Launches Its Dramatically Redesigned Website

Miami, Florida, May 4: SeaDream Yacht Club has launched it’s dramatically redesigned website at for consumers and travel professionals alike, with easier to navigate tabs to information about its mega-yachts, their destinations, amenities, special offers and more. There are more than 75 downloadable photos, several videos, new itinerary maps, up-to-date port descriptions and details of SeaDream’s diversity of land adventures. And a new interactive deck plan tool enables site visitors to view yacht details, images and three-dimensional stateroom diagrams. Visitors can link to the SeaDream Blog, download and request a brochure, and sign up for “yacht mail.” And travel professionals can use the Online Booking Engine to make new reservations, order brochures and at the same time sign up for educational webinars.

“The redesigned site provides the quality, look and feel of the yachting experience unique to SeaDream I & SeaDream II” said Bob Lepisto, SeaDream’s President. Adding: “In the case of our new website—a picture really is worth a thousand words. The terrific array of high quality images gives a thorough representation of the SeaDream yachting lifestyle.”

If the urge to explore yachting should strike while internet users may be on-the-go, SeaDream now has a BlackBerry® application. SeaDream can be found on all the main mobile platforms including iPhone® and Android™. For more information contact 800-707-4911 or .

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Carnival Breeze to Operate 6- & 8-Day Cruises From Port of Miami Beginning In Nov 2012

MIAMI, May 3: Miami-based Carnival Cruise Lines and the Port of Miami have announced that the line’s newest ship, the 130,000-ton Carnival Breeze, will launch year-round 6- and 8-day Caribbean cruises from Miami beginning in November 2012. The 3,690-passenger Carnival Breeze will be the sixth Carnival Cruise Lines ship homeported in Miami. Collectively, these vessels are expected to carry roughly 1 million guests annually – the most of any Carnival homeport.

“The Port of Miami is a long-standing and valued partner and we’re pleased to build upon that relationship by basing the Carnival Breeze in Miami year-round,” said Gerry Cahill, Carnival president and CEO. “Our company has been based in Miami since it was founded nearly 40 years ago and we can’t wait to welcome this exciting and innovative new ship to our hometown.”

Port Director Bill Johnson noted that Carnival is the Port of Miami’s largest cruise line. “The Carnival Breeze adds to an already distinguished fleet that includes some of the most modern and exciting ships on the seas today.”

As Carnival’s newest “Fun Ship,” Carnival Breeze will offer a host of exciting innovations, including expansive top-deck areas such as WaterWorks, an aqua park with exhilarating water slides and other attractions; SportSquare, an open-air recreation complex with a ropes course, mini-golf, and outdoor fitness area; The Lanai, a wraparound promenade with whirlpools extending over the ship’s sides, and a 270-square-foot poolside LED screen displaying movies, and other programming. ues, with iconic images of palm trees and other island-inspired elements adorning hallway corridors.

Convenient Six-Day Caribbean Schedule from Miami
As part of its innovative Miami-based cruise schedule, Carnival Breeze will offer a year-round 3-port, 6-day cruise program operating Sundays-Saturdays beginning Dec 2, 2012. This schedule will be offered on alternating weeks and will feature visits to three popular ports of call: Grand Turk, B.W.I.; Ocho Rios, Jamaica; and Nassau, The Bahamas. Although uniquely different, each of these destinations features beautiful white-sand beaches, excellent shopping, dining and sightseeing experiences, and a wide variety of water sports opportunities, along with a laid-back island ambiance that embodies the essence of a Caribbean cruise.

Port-Intensive Eight-Day Itineraries From Miami
Expanding upon its role as the leader in Caribbean cruising, Carnival Breeze will offer two distinctly different 4-port, 8-day itineraries year-round from the Port of Miami operating Saturday-Sunday beginning Nov 24, 2012. Each of the Carnival Breeze’s 8-day cruises from Miami will provide guests with ample opportunities to sample the best that the Caribbean has to offer, from sunning and relaxing on gorgeous beaches to shopping for duty-free bargains and savoring delectable island cuisine. The Saturday-to-Sunday rotation is particularly attractive as it maximizes consumers’ vacation time, with eight full days of cruising across two weekends.

The schedule includes an 8-day southern Caribbean itinerary that will feature Grand Turk, La Romana (Dominican Republic), Curacao, and Aruba, along with an 8-day eastern Caribbean route visiting St. Thomas/St. John, Antigua, Tortola and Nassau. Combined with its 6-day cruises, Carnival Breeze guests are offered unprecedented opportunities to visit a diversity of sunny, tropical Caribbean destinations, with nearly a dozen ports of call featured among the various itineraries.

Prior to the launch of year-round Caribbean service from Miami, Carnival Breeze will debut with a summer schedule of 12-day Mediterranean cruises from Barcelona operating June 3 to Nov 6, 2012. Reservations for Carnival Breeze’s new European and Caribbean itineraries open May 4, while the ship’s many features and colorful new stateroom designs are highlighted at For additional information and reservations contact any travel agent, call 1-800-CARNIVAL or visit

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P&O Cruises takes delivery of Adonia, the ‘pathfinder’ ship

P&O Cruises has taken delivery of the latest addition to its fleet, Adonia, today May 3 at 3pm. Adonia is currently in the Bahamas undertaking a refit before coming to Southampton for her inaugural celebrations and maiden season. At 30,000 tons and carrying just 710 passengers, Adonia is able to reach many lesser visited, off the beaten track, ports of call, yet is big enough to provide an extensive range of modern on board facilities. Exclusively for adults, Adonia will offer an atmosphere that is intimate and refined–and the on board excellence for which the company is renowned.

Adonia will be named by Dame Shirley Bassey, DBE in a glittering ceremony in Southampton on Saturday May 21, 2011. Dame Shirley will be joined on the stage by actor Hugh Bonneville, most recently acclaimed as the Earl of Grantham in ITV’s Downton Abbey and soon to appear in a nautical Captain’s role in ‘Dr Who’.

“Dame Shirley is Britain’s most successful female artiste ever; a national treasure who defines the word ‘superstar’, Hugh is one of Britain’s most popular actors. We are Britain's favorite and most successful cruise line and can trace our roots back further than any other line. All in all it’s a perfect combination and one which will give Adonia the best start to her life with P&O Cruises“ said P&O Cruises managing director, Carol Marlow. “Adonia will be the jewel in the P&O Cruises crown and will celebrate all those things our regular passengers love about cruising with us – a classic dance floor, Crow’s Nest observation lounge, formal nights, classical music recitals, guest speakers, silver service dining and a dedicated card room. Loyal cruisers and those new to cruising alike will be charmed by the refined P&O Cruises experience Adonia will offer,” Marlow added.

Over 500 invited guests will witness the naming ceremony on Adonia’s Lido deck in Southampton Docks on Saturday, May 21, prior to the vessel’s maiden voyage the following day, a 16 night cruise to the Western Mediterranean, which includes calls to Alghero in Sardinia; Portofino in Italy; Sete in France; Port Mahon and Barcelona in Spain.

Adonia facts
Built in 2001, Adonia has all the facilities you would expect of a modern ship, with a classic and refined interior style. Adonia’s main restaurant will be the Pacific Restaurant and there will be two further Select dining venues, Italian ‘Sorrento’ and the Ocean Grill by Marco Pierre White. There will also be a buffet restaurant, with some al fresco dining and a barbecue area out on the Lido deck.

For entertainment, Adonia will have eight bars, including P&O Cruises signature ‘Crow’s Nest’ observation lounge; Andersons, the familiar club-style lounge bar; and Raffles, which will also offer a coffee shop menu throughout the day with pastries, chocolates, hot drinks and afternoon tea. There is also a traditional library with fireplace and views on three sides. Adonia will also feature The Curzon Lounge, where passengers can enjoy a drink with a sea view during the day, and by night enjoy a performance by the Headliners theatre company, concerts, dancing, or after dinner speakers.

There will be the signature Oasis Spa, offering a range of treatments and therapies such as hot stone massages and body scrubs, Aromatherapy, and reflexology. There is also a well equipped gym with panoramic sea views. Adonia’s well appointed cabins will feature Egyptian cotton linen, tea and coffee making facilities so popular with British passengers, and over 75% of the cabins will have a private balcony.

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InnerSea Discoveries Christens Two Expedition Vessels for Inaugural Season in Southeast Alaska

Seattle, WA, May 2: With the crack of a champagne bottle against each hull, InnerSea Discoveries officially inaugurated its fleet of two expedition vessels soon to set sail on active adventure “un-cruises” in Southeast Alaska. friends, family, employees and business partners gathered dockside outside the company’s Seattle office on Friday, April 29 to celebrate the successful refurbishment and launch of the new brand’s 68-guest m/v Wilderness Discoverer and 60-guest m/v Wilderness Adventurer.

Making the celebration even sweeter, the company reports its first season sailing weeklong and two-week cruises in Alaska is sold out with only a few cabins left on its two 15-day cruises sailing between Seattle and Juneau. “The response we’ve had for our adventure cruises in Alaska has been outstanding,” said Tim Jacox, executive vice president of sales and marketing. “We have successfully tapped into a market of travelers looking for fun, active vacations in nature. We’re already booking 2012.”

After beating a native Tlingit drum and leading the crowd in a chant of “It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood,” Principal and CEO Dan Blanchard led the heartfelt ceremony thanking employees and business partners for their part in making the dream of a new small ship adventure cruise line become a reality. The company also owns sister brand American Safari Cruises which has been in business for 13 years.

“This is a proud, happy day,” said Blanchard. “The successful refurbishment and launch of these two expedition ships is a culmination of hard work by many people. The ships are ready to sail to Alaska, and we are more than excited to welcome our guests on board for adventures in the wilderness.”

Blanchard asked dedicated employee Naomi Sture to help with the christening ceremony, a maritime tradition to ensure good luck and safe voyages. Sture has been a sales consultant with InnerSea Discoveries and sister brand American Safari Cruises since 2006 and has been an integral part of the company’s growth and success. Ral West, a long-time friend of Jacox and Blanchard, also helped christen the ships.

The two ships, originally constructed to maximize up-close, adventurous itineraries, have undergone complete refurbishment inside and out. All guest cabins are above deck with large, view windows, eco-friendly memory foam mattresses and bath amenities, flatscreen televisions with DVD players and iPod docking stations. The main lounge has been designed to feel like a cross between a National Park lodge and a quaint neighborhood pub with a bar top made from salvaged Alaskan yellow cedar. Each ship also has a sauna, exercise equipment, complimentary on-deck yoga classes, a large resource library, well-stocked DVD library and board games and a hot tub with a view.
InnerSea Discoveries’ un-cruise adventures sail between Juneau and Ketchikan (and reverse) from May through September on a Western Coves and Eastern Coves itinerary. When combined, it becomes the two-week Ultimate Adventure. Setting it apart from other cruise line itineraries, InnerSea Discoveries’ ships spend less time in port and instead spend time tucking into hidden bays and coves for adventure activities in Alaska’s wilderness. Guided hiking and kayaking trips will be daily activities.

Prices include a transfer day of embarkation and disembarkation and all activities except optional excursions. Port charges of $167 per person per week, massages, wine, spirits, beer, and gratuities are extra. Reservations are currently being taken for 2012 “un-cruises” supported by a 16-page brochure and full web site descriptions. To book the ‘un-cruise’ or to request additional information, contact your travel agent or InnerSea Discoveries at 877-901-1009 or .

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Seabourn Unveils Newly-Designed Website

SEATTLE, May 2: Seabourn has launched a new website at its familiar internet address,, with a fresh look and many new features and functionalities - all of which were designed to make the online experience more intuitive, easier and more user-friendly. One of the most significant features of the new website is the new "My Seabourn" account, where guests can easily access their bookings and manage their reservations online. Guests can add options such as spa appointments or shore excursions, or print out their customized itinerary, which integrates both the cruise schedule and any options they may have booked in advance. They can also adjust their personal onboard preferences, choosing from a variety of options such as beverage preferences for their complimentary in-suite bar, bed configuration, choice of pillows, dining, suite amenities and many other customized features.

"We redesigned the website to provide an engaging, friendlier and smoother online experience for our guests," said John Delaney, Seabourn's Senior Vice President of Marketing and Sales. "Planning a vacation is an important decision," he explained, "and we wanted to make it as easy as possible for them to obtain the information they need to research and plan for their Seabourn cruise vacations."

The website reflects a more elegant and contemporary feel, capturing the essence of a Seabourn cruise. New menus and options were added, making it easier for visitors to navigate through the site and explore the Seabourn cruise experience. There are more and larger photos of each intimate ship and of nearly every aspect of the onboard lifestyle. Virtual tours are linked with detailed deck plans, as well, all giving visitors a thorough impression of what it is like to sail on a Seabourn cruise. Other enhancements include an elevated social media profile, including a drop-down menu with links to Seabourn's various social media sites. Facebook's popular "Like" button is also placed throughout the website, allowing guests to share their vacations with friends and family on the popular social networking site. Another new vacation-planning feature allows guests browsing the website to add an itinerary or shore excursion they are interested in to a list of personal favorites under their "My Seabourn" user account, for later review or confirmation.

Based on guest and user feedback, the company also created a "Customer Care" button at the right top corner of each page, providing a one-stop shop for visitors seeking the best way to contact a Seabourn representative, or to quickly browse through FAQ's for the answers to any questions they may have.
Seabourn is in the final weeks of completing a three-year fleet expansion that doubles the number of ships and triples its guest capacity. The line's new class of ships, beginning with Seabourn Odyssey in 2009, has been acclaimed as a "game changer" for the luxury segment. Carrying just 450 guests each, in expansive ocean-view suites, Seabourn Odyssey, and sisters Seabourn Sojourn and Seabourn Quest, have received rave reviews from critics, travel agents and luxury cruisers. Combined with their smaller sisters, Seabourn Pride, Seabourn Spirit and Seabourn Legend, the line is able to offer a wide variety of exotic luxury cruising options exploring more than 200 destinations around the world. To browse Seabourn's new website, for more information on its worldwide cruises or to make a reservation, contact a travel agent, call Seabourn at 1-800-929-9391 or visit

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Crystal Announces Golf Theme on Hawaiian Holiday Cruise

LOS ANGELES, May 2: In a real "hole-in-one" for golf fans, Crystal Cruises is adding a golf theme to its 12/21-1/4 Hawaiian holiday sailing. The round-trip-LA Crystal Symphony voyage joins two other golf-themed cruises already scheduled on Crystal Serenity in 2011: 7/22-8/2 in Britain and 11/27-12/8 in Portugal/Spain. Legendary pro golfer Billy Casper will headline all three.

With 51 PGA tour wins, many consider Casper the best putter of his era. On each cruise, guests can absorb stories and tips during informal lectures by Casper and other athletic stars, such as Emmy-winning sportscaster Jim Huber. They can also mingle and play with the PGA pros at some of the most stunning championship courses in the world, including:

-- Poipu Bay (Kauai)--top Hawaiian course surrounded by ancient places of worship
-- Royal Portrush (Belfast)--designed by course-architect great, Harry Colt
-- Carden Park (Liverpool)--Jack Nicklaus/Golden Bear "thinking golfer's" fairway with spectacular views
-- Royal Dublin (Dublin)--Ireland's second-oldest links
-- El Saler (Valencia)--one of Golf Magazine's "100 Greatest Courses in the World"
-- Golf Club Del Sur (Canary Islands)--home to several PGA European tour competitions, surrounded by 8,000 palm trees
-- Palheiro (Funchal)--coastal ridge greens on a 200-year-old estate.

Crystal provides transportation, caddies, warm-up time, lunch, '19th hole' get-togethers, TaylorMade club rentals or cleaning of your clubs and shoes, team-pairing, parties, awards, and private clinics with PGA instructors like John Clark and Bill Stutzer. "We make it all easy," says John Stoll, vice president land and port operations. "We sail everyone to paradise in luxury, where golf enthusiasts can pursue their passion at world-class locales, while loved ones see the sites or indulge their own vacation desires."

Two-for-One fares include free air from two-dozen North American cities (or air credit), up to $1000/person "As You Wish" spending credits, and additional savings for family/friend groups, early payment, or new-to-Crystal travelers. Crystal Cruises' Feng Shui spa and gym, personal trainers, nutrition and exercise classes, exclusive workout equipment, and dietary choices offer guests extensive opportunities to enhance their health and fitness regimes on every sailing. For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent. Call 888-799-4625. Visit

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Azamara Club Cruises Celebrates First South America Season

MIAMI, May 1: Azamara Journey will sail to vibrant South America for the first time this upcoming October to deliver the regions colors, cultures, and best-kept secrets. In honor of the ship’s inaugural season in the region, Azamara Club Cruises is offering up to 50 percent savings and up to a $1,000 ChoiceAir credit for up-market travelers to join in the celebrations on an amazing Azamara voyage. Not to be left out, up-market travelers also can enjoy the same offer on select Southeast Asia voyages aboard Azamara Quest.

Featuring longer stays and more overnight stays at more than 45 percent of port visits, Azamara Club Cruises’ guests can enjoy an immersive travel experience and take advantage of night tourism in destinations where the nightlife is even more vibrant than the day’s. On select South America voyages aboard Azamara Journey, guests can celebrate Christmas in South America with an overnight in Punta Del Este, Uruguay; herald in the New Year aboard, with VIP views of the New Year’s Eve fireworks off of Copacabana Beach, and then join in the revelry on shore at 1 a.m.; or spend three days in the cosmopolitan city of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

While Azamara Journey plies South American waters, Azamara Quest rediscovers Southeast Asia and its many ancient gems. Guests will not only enjoy the extraordinary service, for which Azamara is renowned, but they can immerse themselves in the respective cultures at each destination through three full days at Bangkok, Thailand, and overnight stays in Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi (Halong Bay), Vietnam. Azamara Quest also will sail up Bangkok’s Chao Phraya River, closer to the many attractions in the fascinating city.

Guests enjoy Azamara Club Cruises signature extraordinary service and more inclusive amenities, such as included gratuities for housekeeping, dining and bar staff; complimentary bottled water, sodas, specialty coffee, and teas, as well as complimentary red and white boutique wines to accompany lunch and dinner; complimentary self-service laundry; English Butler service for suite guests; and shuttle bus to city centers in ports, where available.
The offer is only valid for new U.S. and Canada individual bookings for select voyages, made from May 1 to June 30, 2011. Guests booking a Club Oceanview stateroom, a Club Veranda stateroom, or Club Continent Suite will receive $500 ChoiceAir credit per guest, while those booking a Club Ocean Suite or Club World Owner’s Suite will receive a $1,000 credit per guest. Travelers must quote option code “CHS” at the time of booking and offer is subject to availability. Additional details are available through the Special Promotions link at the bottom of

ChoiceAir offers guests access to highly competitive airfares, more flight options and full control and visibility of their air arrangements. Guests enjoy exceptional, dedicated service that includes day-of-travel support to help them get to their voyage, even if they encounter flight delays or cancellations requiring a last-minute change or diversion to the next port of call. ChoiceAir is available through a travel professional, directly from Azamara Club Cruises, and online at For more information, travelers can call their travel professional, dial 1-877-999-9553, or visit Azamara Club Cruises at

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Cruises Guide & Cruise Forum featured on ABC's GOOD MORNING AMERICA — In case you missed the story, you can still watch it online at
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CDC Inspection Scores for all ships inspected

Cruise News Archive
Past cruise news items listed by month

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