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Cruise News
August 1-31, 2010

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Unless otherwise noted, all news items are sourced by individual cruise lines,
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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

Carnival Magic's Major Construction Milestone Commemorated with Traditional Coin Ceremony

MIAMI, Aug 31: The magic continues! In a time-honored maritime tradition, a ceremony recently was held aboard Carnival Magic at the Fincantieri shipyard in Monfalcone, Italy, during which a commemorative coin was welded to the ship’s mast to mark a significant construction milestone. Carnival Cruise Lines’ 3,690-passenger “Fun Ship” is set to debut in Europe May 1, 2011.

The ceremony, which dates back to the ancient Romans who believed that attaching coins to a ship provided divine protection, signifies the successful completion of Carnival Magic’s exterior outfitting. Laura Buttignon, a 35-year Fincantieri veteran whose father also was employed by the shipbuilder, served as madrina, or godmother, at the ceremony. With just eight months until the ship’s maiden voyage, work continues on Carnival Magic’s dramatic interiors and unique on-board innovations.

Exclusive images and videos of the coin ceremony, as well as Carnival Magic’s fun and exciting features, are available at, a micro-site showcasing this spectacular “Fun Ship.”

“With the completion of the coin ceremony, Carnival Magic is right on schedule and we can’t wait for our guests to experience this fantastic ship,” said Gerry Cahill, Carnival’s president and CEO. “Carnival Magic captures the essence of a ‘Fun Ship’ vacation with innovative on-board spaces, delicious new dining options and fun and engaging activities to provide guests a lifetime of magical memories.”

Following the coin ceremony, thousands of talented artisans, craftsmen and workers returned to work on Carnival Magic’s one-of-a-kind features. Those include a new island-inspired watering hole, RedFrog Pub, which features its own private-label draught beer; Cucina del Capitano, an authentic trattoria that brings the heritage of Carnival’s Italian captains to the table, and an expansive outdoor sports complex offering cruising’s first-ever ropes course, outdoor weight-lifting area and gargantuan 500-gallon water dump bucket—part of the splash-tastic WaterWorks aqua park.

Spanning 15 fun-filled decks, Carnival Magic will offer other guest-pleasing features such as The Lanai, a wraparound promenade with whirlpools that extend out over the ship’s sides; Ocean Plaza, a stunning indoor/outdoor café and entertainment venue; innovative accommodations including cove balcony cabins closer to the waterline and two-bath, five-berth staterooms that should hold particular appeal to families; a mouth-watering array of formal and casual dining options offering cuisines from around the world; the relaxing Serenity adults-only retreat, and the Cloud 9 Spa, one of the largest health and wellness facilities at sea.

Carnival Magic is slated to debut in Europe with a series of 7- to 12-day Mediterranean cruises operating May 1 – Oct. 16, 2011. Following a 16-day trans-Atlantic crossing, Carnival Magic will launch 7-day Caribbean service from Galveston, Texas, Nov. 14, 2011, becoming the port’s largest year-round cruise ship. For additional information and reservations on the “Fun Ship” vacation experience, call 1-800-327-9501.

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Crystal Cruises Decks the Halls - and Everything Else - for Holiday Voyages

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 31: In its traditional six-star style, Crystal Cruises is introducing extravagantly redesigned decor aboard its two award-winning ships this holiday season. With each ship boasting distinctly different themes, thousands of glittering lights, ribbon-wrapped wreaths, reindeer in faux mink swags, candy canes, crystal ornaments - even feathers - will adorn Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity for the 2010 Christmas/New Year cruises. Respectively, the vessels sail round-trip from Los Angeles on a Dec 22 voyage to the Hawaiian Islands and round-trip from Miami on a Dec 21 Caribbean itinerary.

"Holidays aboard Crystal ships are always lavish affairs, with unforgettable banquets and parties and decorations planned for families and friends traveling and celebrating together," says Bret Bullock, vice president, entertainment.

Crystal Symphony will sport a sophisticated palette, beginning with three heralding angels, complete with lushly feathered wings and golden trumpets, overlooking the Crystal Plaza. In the Bistro, an Eiffel Tower Christmas tree with apropos coffee-themed ornaments will be lit from within, while golden- and white-feathered trees are set throughout the Avenue of the Stars and Crystal Cove.

Suiting Crystal Serenity's Caribbean destinations, tropically dressed penguins and polar bears will serve as Santa's helpers in the Palm Court lobby, with snowflakes and lighted icicles at virtually every turn. The Stardust lounge will become Santa's workshop, and a chic, cocktail-themed tree will hang upside-down in Pulse nightclub, while Silk Road and The Sushi Bar display chopstick-laden trees.

Christmas brings traditional feasts, eggnog and holiday shows, while a black-tie New Year's Eve party rings in the New Year. Clergy will be on board for religious services. Both 14-day sailings include $500 per person 'All Inclusive - As You Wish' shipboard credits. For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit

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Windstar Cruises Announces 2-For-1 Fares on Select Fall European Sailings

SEATTLE, Aug. 31: 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, offers exceptional values to some of the most remarkable places in the world with 2-for-1 fares on select fall European voyages plus up to $750 per person bonus savings for new bookings made now through Sept 5, 2010.

Wind Surf 7-Day European Voyages:
-- Oct 17, 2010, Venice to Venice Sailing: Venice, Italy (overnight); Rovinj, Croatia; Opatija, Croatia; Trogir, Croatia; Dubrovnik, Croatia; At Sea; and Venice, Italy.
-- Oct 31, 2010, Rome to Barcelona Sailing: Rome, Italy; Portoferraio, Italy; Porto-Vecchio, Italy; Alghero, Italy; Palma de Mallorca, Spain; Mahon, Spain; and Barcelona, Spain.
-- Nov 7, 2010, Barcelona to Lisbon Sailing: Barcelona, Spain; Tarragona, Spain; Ibiza, Spain; Almeria, Spain; Malaga, Spain; Tangier, Morocco; At Sea; and Lisbon, Portugal.

Wind Star 7-Day European Voyages:
-- Oct 23, 2010, Rome to Rome Sailing: Rome, Italy; Ischia, Italy; Sorrento, Italy; Amalfi, Italy; At Sea; Cagliari, Italy; Porto Cervo, Italy; Porto-Vecchio, France; and Rome, Italy.
-- Oct 30, 2010, Rome to Barcelona Sailing: Rome, Italy; Port Cervo, Italy; Cagliari, Italy; Carloforto, Italy; Mahon, Spain; Palma de Mallorca, Spain; Valencia, Spain; and Barcelona, Spain.
-- Nov 6, 2010, Barcelona to Lisbon Sailing: Barcelona, Spain; Palma de Mallorca, Spain; At Sea; Almeria, Spain; Malaga, Spain; Cadiz, Spain; Portimao, Portugal; and Lisbon, Portugal.

Wind Spirit 7-Day European Voyages:
-- Oct 30, 2010, Rome to Rome Sailing: Rome, Italy; Port-Vecchio, France; Porto Cervo, Italy; At Sea; Amalfi, Italy; Sorrento, Italy; Capri, Italy; Ischia, Italy; and Rome, Italy.
-- Nov 6, 2010, Rome to Barcelona Sailing: Rome, Italy; Ischia, Italy; Sorrento, Italy; Amalfi, Italy; At Sea; Carloforto, Italy; Mahon, Spain; Palma de Mallorca, Spain; and Barcelona, Spain.

Windstar's 2-for-1 Europe fares are not combinable with any other promotions/programs or shipboard credit offers. Offer is valid on new bookings made Aug 30, 2010, through Sept 5, 2010. Offer valid for U.S. residents only. 2-for-1 fares are per person, double occupancy based on a 50 percent discount off brochure fares as published in the 2010/2011Windstar Cruises Sailing Atlas. Bonus Savings of up to $750 per person on select sailings, is in addition to the 2-for-1 fare and is valid on select sailings only. Once allotted staterooms are sold, the promotion is closed for that sailing. Government fees and taxes additional. Full payment is required within 24 hours of making the booking. Offer is capacity controlled and may be withdrawn or modified at the discretion of Windstar. For more information including brochures, rates and itineraries contact a professional travel agent or call Windstar at 1-800-258-7245. Visit Windstar Cruises online at

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Paul Gauguin Cruises Scores Highest Guest Survey Ranking in 14-Year Sailing History

BELLEVUE, WA, Aug 30: Recently celebrating the one-year anniversary of being a member of the Pacific Beachcomber portfolio, Paul Gauguin Cruises is pleased to share news of remarkable accolades. The m/s Paul Gauguin recently achieved its highest guest survey in the ship’s 14-year sailing history, scoring a 98.9% in excellence by guests of the Aug 7, 2010 sailing to Tahiti and the Society Islands.

The survey marked notable improvements to the entire guest experience aboard The Gauguin, from booking a voyage, experiences onboard and the return trip home. Food quality, service and staff attentiveness all ranked highly on the 67-question survey. Guest surveys are completed at the end of each sailing, with The Gauguin receiving increasingly higher rankings as the year progressed.

“I am tremendously proud of the entire Paul Gauguin Cruises team. We have worked diligently to provide the most authentic and memorable experiences for our guests, and it is with great pride that I thank our agents, operations teams and crew of The Gauguin for their outstanding hard work and their continued commitment to our guests,” comments Richard Bailey, President of Pacific Beachcomber, S.C.

Additionally, fostering relationships with the travel agent community remains paramount to Paul Gauguin Cruises. Effective today, Paul Gauguin Cruises announces the extension of phone hours to accommodate the increase in phone activity and broader agent and customer base. The new hours are from Monday through Friday 6:00am to 5:30pm (PST) and Saturday 7:00am to 3:00pm (PST). Paul Gauguin Cruises also recently implemented a higher land commission of 10% for agents booking pre- and post-cruise travel. For rates and reservations for Paul Gauguin Cruises, contact a Professional Travel Agent, call 800-848-6172 or visit

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Queen Elizabeth’s Royal Spa Features Soothing and Revitalizing Treatments

August 2010: Cunard Line’s tradition of providing guests with the ultimate luxury experiences at sea continues on board with Queen Elizabeth’s Royal Spa. The tranquil 13,000 square-foot modern spa space features stunning décor in line with the art deco style of the new Cunarder, and includes two levels for treatment rooms, and fitness and pool facilities. Like her sister ships, Queen Elizabeth’s spa offers a comprehensive health and wellness programme with a spectacular Hydrotherapy Pool and Thermal Suite, with the new addition of the Royal Bath House, the centerpiece for the ultimate spa experience. Inspired by holistic, relaxing and stress-relieving treatments drawn from disciplines around the world, the Royal Spa will offer among the most luxurious and exotic treatments available in any spa resort, including being the first spa at sea to provide Remède products and treatments.

"As the world awaits Queen Elizabeth, our guests are eager to experience all the lavish amenities featured on board, including the rituals of luxury found in the Royal Spa,” said Peter Shanks, president of Cunard Line. “From couples treatment suites and new treatments, to adventurous fitness classes and premium spa product partners, Cunard continues to offer White Star Service as it provides the ultimate in rejuvenation at sea.”

In addition to the highly-sought after features of the Thermal Suite and Hydrotherapy Pool, a new fixture on board Queen Elizabeth’s Royal Spa is the Royal Bath House. This covered space is a social relaxation area that includes both the Thermal Suite and Hydrotherapy Pool, all adjacent to the main outdoor pool on Deck 9. Plush robes, slippers and other amenities will be provided. Day passes are available for those guests not booking a treatment.

Beyond the aquatics area of the spa, guests can enjoy time to rejuvenate and revitalize with treatments provided by one of Cunard’s many high-end partners. Queen Elizabeth will be the first spa at sea to offer Remède service, including Customized Facials and Massages, as well as Remède and Elemis spa products. Additionally, other new treatments and partners include:

Royal Spa Self-Scrub: A customized, do-it-yourself experience, guests work with the spa’s mixologist to create a special blend of exfoliants that buff away dead skin and impurities.
Cellulite Reduction and Revitalizing Leg Therapy by Ionithermie: This detoxifying, firming and toning treatment helps to eliminate toxins using faradic and galvanic stimuli. Alleviates water retention and also guarantees inches will be lost after just one treatment.

The Royal Spa also includes a full-service hair and nail salon using award-winning products and providing the latest services, such as:

Phyto Hair Cocktails: Phyto is a botanical blend of powerful plants and herbs that help repair the structure of the hair and nourish the scalp and follicles, roots and ends. Choose from Phyto Thirst Quencher, Rescue Remedy,Botanical Bliss or Colour Guard.
bliss® Poetic Waxing: Bliss’s famous “painless as possible” waxing removes unwanted hair from (practically) anywhere.
Award-winning St. Tropez Sunless Tanning for the face and body
Brazilian Blowout: The Brazilian Blowout leaves hair smooth, healthy and frizz-free for up to 12 weeks without the use of damaging chemicals. Through the use of a proprietary polymer system, this treatment actually enhances the condition of the hair by creating a protective protein layer around the hair shaft to eliminate frizz and smooth the cuticle, improving the health of the hair.

Refreshing Fitness
For health-focused guests, Queen Elizabeth’s fitness centre includes a fully appointed work-out facility and aerobics studio featuring signature fitness classes, including:

Walkvest®: Burn extra calories while wearing a weighted vest (two – 16 lbs.) while walking.
Walking Poles: Turn walking into a total body workout, engaging every muscle with each stride. Classes show how the use of the poles can enhance “walking” experiences to help improve stamina, posture and balance.
Aqua Tone: This special class incorporates movements with various types of water equipment, such as dumbbells, floats, aqua gloves and fins. The water resistance helps build muscles without overexertion.

Wellness Centre
To promote overall wellbeing, the Royal Spa also offers services using the ancient traditions of Chinese medicines and Ayurvedic techniques. A professionally trained acupuncturist, registered by the British Acupuncture Council, offers six different treatments to assist in alleviating stress or pain, or helping with weight loss.

Ayurveda (Sanskrit for the Science of Life) is an ancient Indian health care system and offers a wellness plan that includes guests’ preferred type of exercise, dietary choices and even way of life/hobbies around their primary “dosha” (constitution): Pitta (water and fire), Vata (ether and air) or Kapha (water and earth). Three popular balancing Ayurvedic therapies are offered that will relax and rejuvenate the spirit, whatever the dosha. And since a key part of health and wellness is education, seminars from managing arthritis to metabolism enhancement will be offered throughout each voyage.

For more information and to book a voyage aboard Queen Elizabeth, consult your Travel Agent, call toll-free 1-800-7-CUNARD (1-800-728-6273) or go to

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Huge New Penthouse & Verandah Savings for 2011 Crystal Voyages

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 26: Crystal Cruises is offering substantial new savings, up to $3,000 per couple on luxurious, butler-serviced Penthouse accommodations and up to $2,000 per couple on plush Verandah staterooms, on ten exotic 2011 voyages.

For bookings by Dec 31, 2010, guests can enjoy even greater value with the line's ultra-luxury vacations in 2011, including a summer North Cape itinerary to the Arctic Circle and land of the Midnight Sun, dramatic Panama Canal transits, South America cruises to Chile, Brazil and Argentina South America, and the grandest historical sites of the Baltic and Mediterranean. Additionally, all 2011 sailings include $500 or $1,000 per person 'All Inclusive - As You Wish' shipboard credits and complimentary air transportation from many North America gateways - free Business Class Air for Penthouse guests in Europe.

"While a Crystal cruise inherently offers an inclusive, unmatched vacation experience, this promotion enables travelers to plan in advance and reap huge savings on a broad scope of cruise itineraries," says Bill Smith, senior vice president, sales & marketing. "Even sailings more than a year out have been included in this special offer."

South America
-- Jan 5, Crystal Symphony - Los Angeles to Valparaiso
-- Feb 7, Crystal Symphony - Buenos Aires to Miami

Panama Canal
-- Jan 4, Crystal Serenity - Miami to Los Angeles
-- March 17, Crystal Symphony - Miami to Los Angeles

Baltic & North Cape
-- May 22, Crystal Serenity - Hamburg to Stockholm
-- June 13, Crystal Serenity - Copenhagen to Stockholm (North Cape)

-- Aug 26, Crystal Serenity - Barcelona to Venice
-- Oct 13, Crystal Serenity - Barcelona to Athens
-- Nov 5, Crystal Serenity - Istanbul to Venice
-- Nov 16, Crystal Serenity - Venice to Barcelona

New in 2011 is Open Dining by Reservation evening dining that adds more choices, convenience and flexibility - or Perfect Choice - to the line's acclaimed classic main and late dinner seatings. The renowned Crystal Experience has been rated "World's Best" in its category more than another cruise line, hotel or resort in history. For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit

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Carnival Unveils Carnival Magic's Online Home and Invites Fans to Offer
Personal Touches to 'Make The Magic Yours'

MIAMI, Aug. 25: Let the magic begin! As Carnival Cruise Lines unveils new details about its newest "Fun Ship," Carnival Magic, fans and fun-seekers can now learn more and join in the fun, well before the ship sets sail next year. Carnival has launched a new, interactive online home for Carnival Magic at that showcases the ship's standout features through a full-screen virtual tour and more, as well as many ways for "Fun Ship" enthusiasts to add their own unique touches to the new vessel, set to debut May 1, 2011.

Through the Make the Magic Yours campaign, which includes a wild array of contests and promotions, Carnival is inviting fans of fun to "make the Magic theirs" by submitting ideas and voting on their favorites, while supporting St. Jude Children's Research Hospital®. The campaign will run Aug. 24, 2010, through Feb. 18, 2011, and Carnival will make a donation of up to $50,000 to St. Jude. The donation to St. Jude is based upon participation and voting.

"The interactive and informative site allows visitors to explore the Carnival Magic through an immersive online experience that spotlights her beauty and fun-filled features, while also taking our reputation for participatory fun for all to a whole new level, months before the ship enters service," said Gerry Cahill, Carnival's president and CEO. "Our Make the Magic Yours campaign offers Carnival fans the chance to put their mark on the Carnival Magic and see their ideas and personalities brought to life in some of the ship's spectacular spaces."

A Magic-Filled Site
From bow to stern, Carnival offers a comprehensive look at the new and exciting features of the Carnival Magic at Visitors can view a full-screen virtual video tour of the innovative new public spaces aboard Carnival Magic including: RedFrog Pub, Carnival's first-ever pub at sea; the line's Italian captain-inspired Cucina del Capitano restaurant; an expansive indoor/outdoor café and entertainment venue, Ocean Plaza; splash-tastic Carnival WaterWorks aqua park; relaxing Cloud 9 Spa; and all of the fun and exciting youth-related spaces. More spaces will be showcased in the coming months. Guests can learn how they will enjoy each area with beautiful images, and behind-the-scenes videos, as well as share their comments via Facebook Connect or Funville, Carnival's own on-line community.

Visitors will also find the latest Carnival Magic news, interactive deck plans, and images and descriptions of different stateroom accommodations. They can learn more about Carnival Magic's Europe and Caribbean itineraries and explore the ports of calls, and view pricing. With the countdown clock showing 249 days and counting until Carnival Magic's inaugural sailing, visitors can also enjoy exclusive views of the shipbuilding process and learn more about the vessel's construction in Italy.

Fans Add Magic Touches To the Ship
Another great feature of the Carnival Magic microsite, guests can learn more about participating in a sea of fun monthly contests and other promotions that comprise the Make the Magic Yours campaign, which will continue up to Carnival Magic's inaugural sailing in May 2011. Beyond bragging rights, Carnival will be giving away great prizes, from digital cameras to a free cruise. And by participating in many elements of the campaign, fans will also do good by generating monetary donations from Carnival to support St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, one of the world's premier centers for the research and treatment of pediatric cancer and other catastrophic diseases.

Carnival will be challenging fun-seekers everywhere to name some of Carnival Magic's special features, including a gigantic 500-gallon water dump bucket, the largest at sea housed in the WaterWorks aqua park, along with the two-level mini-golf course in SportsSquare, and a delicious dish at Cucina del Capitano, Carnival's first Italian trattoria. Other opportunities include creating fun toasts, coaster sayings, and music playlists for its new island-inspired RedFrog Pub. This winter, kids will be invited to get into the act with creative ways to make the Magic theirs, as well.

Carnival will provide updates on the latest Carnival Magic-related happenings at, and on its popular Twitter profile, while the line's more than 250,000 Facebook fans can check out the updated Carnival Magic tab with engaging videos, fun polls, and a new "meet the crew" feature.

Cheers! Give Us Your Best Pub Line
Raise a glass as the Make the Magic Yours campaign begins today with the RedFrog Coaster Contest, challenging grown-up fun-atics to submit their best pub line. The winning sayings will appear on the thousands of drink coasters used each voyage in Carnival Magic's Caribbean-themed RedFrog Pub as pints of the pub's signature beer, ThirstyFrog Red, Fun Ship Specials and other beverages are enjoyed by guests.

Through Sept. 7, 2010, Carnival welcomes those ages 21 and above to submit the pub-appropriate lines they believe best capture the magical moments experienced on a Carnival "Fun Ship." Entries must be 60 characters or less and Carnival coaster-worthy, as they'll be judged by the company based on relevance, creativity and humor, then culled down to 10 finalists - nine chosen by Carnival and one wild card determined by consumer voting.

In mid-September, Carnival fans and fun-seekers will be invited to vote for their favorite sayings to choose three lucky winners who will be announced later that month. Each winner will receive a special commemorative version of their RedFrog Pub coasters and other items including a digital camera, RedFrog Pub bartending items and more. Additional information and contest rules are available at

The 3,690-passenger Carnival Magic is slated to debut in Europe with a series of 7- to 12-day Mediterranean cruises operating May 1-Oct. 16, 2011. Following a 16-day trans-Atlantic crossing, Carnival Magic will launch seven-day Caribbean service from Galveston, Texas, Nov. 14, 2011, becoming the port's largest year-round cruise ship. For additional information and reservations on the "Fun Ship" vacation experience, contact any travel agent, call 1-800-CARNIVAL or visit

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Sixthman Celebrates 25th Full-Ship Charter Cruise

On Labor Day weekend 2010, Sixthman will celebrate its 25th charter with Caribbean-bound floating festival, Sailing Southern Ground. Appropriately, the charter is hosted by a long-time member of the Sixthman family, Grammy® winner Zac Brown Band. Zac Brown Band performed on nine previous Sixthman cruises, including Cayamo, Simple Man Cruise, and The Rock Boat, before putting together their very own event. Sixthman is excited to bring Zac Brown Band fans across the country along on this special occasion, which will include non-stop live music by dozens of performers, cooking demos with Chef Rusty, cannonball contests, and more.

In the 2010-2011 season, Sixthman will host eleven different voyages, including 311's Caribbean Cruise, the second annual Kid Rock's Chillin' the Most Cruise, Lynyrd Skynyrd's fifth Simple Man Cruise, Barenaked Ladies' fourth Ships and Dip, and Sixthman's first non-music-focused vacation, the Jillian Michaels Ultimate Wellness Cruise.

Sixthman partnered with VH1 in 2010 to produce VH1 Best Cruise Ever , which has its second annual sailing April 2011. The Elvis Cruise, now in its second year under Sixthman's care, and in partnership with Graceland/Elvis Presley Enterprises, has become a huge hit with Elvis fans. Sixthman's partnership with Time Life to create the Malt Shop Memories Cruise was also a rousing success in 2010, and returning guests in 2011 look forward to Chubby Checker, Little Anthony & the Imperials, and several more fifties and sixties favorites. Sixthman also produces an Americana festival-style cruise called Cayamo, which features dozens of bands over seven days and nights, including John Prine, Patty Griffin, Indigo Girls, Steve Earle, Brandi Carlile, and more.

Sixthman was founded in 2001; its inaugural cruise The Rock Boat was hosted by Sister Hazel as a celebration for their fans' hard work promoting the band. By the time Sixthman began planning The Rock Boat 2, it had become a full-ship charter, so the cruise could be set up as a floating music festival - a vacation where everyone aboard shares a common bond: great taste in music. Now exclusively producing full-ship charters, Sixthman has never looked back. For a full list of events, check out

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Carnival Announces Unique and Magic Ways Guests Get in on the Fun on Its
Newest 'Fun Ship,' Carnival Magic

MIAMI, Aug. 24 : With 249 days until its newest "Fun Ship," the 130,000-ton Carnival Magic, sets sail, Carnival Cruise Lines today revealed a peek through the porthole at some of the ship's unique spaces and fun features. From Carnival's first-ever pub, featuring its own private label beer, to an authentic trattoria that brings the heritage of Carnival's Italian captains to the table, to an expansive outdoor sports complex featuring the first-ever ropes coarse and outdoor weight-lifting area on a cruise ship - along with cruising's first gargantuan water dump bucket - Carnival Magic is destined to be the most innovative "Fun Ship" to date. Carnival fans can journey to the Carnival Magic's new online home,, to see and learn more about this 3,690-passenger vessel.

"The Carnival Magic is packed with opportunities to share exhilarating fun, celebratory toasts and fine dining, extraordinary entertainment and blissful relaxation," said Gerry Cahill, Carnival's president and CEO. "This ship offers a truly one-of-a-kind vacation environment with spaces and features designed to provide exceptional experiences that will create magical memories to last a lifetime."

Carnival Magic offers vacationers a variety of innovative and inspirational opportunities for fun, relaxation and enjoyment including:

RedFrog Pub: An exciting new concept, the RedFrog Pub offers a laid-back Caribbean vibe with island-inspired snacks and drinks, including ThirstyFrog Red, a private-label draught beer brewed especially for Carnival Magic. Located on Promenade Deck 5, the 100-seat indoor/outdoor pub is a convivial place where guests can relax, meet new friends, sip a frozen cocktail, and nosh on Bahamian conch salad, grouper fingers, firecracker Jamaican chicken wings, and other Caribbean favorites. RedFrog Pub will also offer tastings of top-rated rums of the Caribbean and a collection of the region's best beers. With a nod to Carnival Magic's Caribbean itineraries which kick off in November 2011, RedFrog Pub's decor is decidedly British West Indies meets Key West, evoking the warmth and friendliness of a local island watering hole. Nautical-themed interiors with rich wood details, vibrant tile work, portholes, and images of ships at sea, along with foosball and shuffleboard tables and a jukebox, complete the playful pub atmosphere.

Cucina del Capitano ("The Captain's Kitchen"): An homage to Carnival's rich Italian lineage - all of the line's captains are Italian and many Carnival ships, including Carnival Magic, are built in Italy - Cucina del Capitano is a delicious dinner-time option with made-to-order Italian favorites in comfortable, relaxed surroundings. Here, guests can dine on hand-made pastas, risotto and fresh-from-the-oven Italian specialties - many served family style - complemented by a wine list specializing in Italian vintages. Many of the dishes and recipes were hand-selected by Carnival's captains. Framed archival photographs, many from the captains' personal collections, table arrangements that invite conversation, wood-beam ceilings, and ornate wrought ironwork recreate the ambiance of a cozy Italian home, while warm, attentive service makes diners feel like they're part of the family. Truly an unforgettable dining experience. Dinner carries a nominal fee. During the day, the space is utilized as a casual made-to-order pasta bar with items offered on a complimentary basis.

SportsSquare: Sports junkies rejoice. Taking Carnival's popular outdoor recreation areas to an entirely new level is SportsSquare, which features the cruise industry's first ropes course where thrill-seeking guests can traverse across nets suspended above Spa Deck 12 and offering spectacular views to the sea nearly 150 feet below. Surrounded by an eighth-mile jogging track, the expansive SportsSquare complex also includes the first outdoor weightlifting area on a cruise ship, along with Carnival's first two-level miniature golf course, a Vita exercise course, a lighted multi-purpose court for basketball, volleyball and soccer, along with ping pong and foosball tables. A full bar with a large flat-screen display is available for those who just want to relax and check out the sports action in the area or on TV. Carnival Magic's other top-deck amenities include the splash-tastic WaterWorks aqua park that will offer even more thrills with an exhilarating "Twister" spiral water slide, as well as the new Aqua Play splash park designed for youngsters and their families, featuring a gigantic, 500-gallon "dump bucket" and a host of other wet 'n wild features. Resort-style pool areas offer the perfect venue for catching rays or some Zs.

Cruisers will also find a variety of signature "Fun Ship" elements on Carnival Magic, including:

Expansive Family-Friendly Spaces - The ultimate family vacation, Carnival Magic offers more than 19,000 square feet of space catering to kids and families, including dedicated spaces for children (Camp Carnival), 'tweens (Circle "C") and teens (Club O2), with organized activities and enthusiastic counselors for each group.
Serenity - The ideal space for some adult-only "me" time, Serenity offers comfortable chaise lounges and chairs, hammocks, colorful umbrellas and two jumbo-sized whirlpools, along with full bar service specializing in frothy, icy concoctions.
Cloud 9 Spa - Guests in the mood for a workout or some personal pampering can visit this stunning and sophisticated facility. At the Cloud 9 Spa, troubles melt away as guests soak in the soothing thalassotherapy pool, unwind in the elaborate thermal suite or just take in the elegant, serene surroundings.
Stateroom Innovations - With 1,845 staterooms, Carnival Magic offers a wide array of accommodation types, including two-bathroom/five-berth cabins and connecting staterooms that hold particular appeal to families; cove balcony cabins closer to the water line; and spa staterooms providing special access and benefits.
Food, Glorious Food - Whether its authentic delicacies from India and China, a full-service meal in an elegant, two-level dining room, a late-night slice of pizza, an exquisite meal in a classic American steakhouse, or just a burger by the pool, Carnival Magic offers a tantalizing array of international cuisines sure to satisfy every palate.
Dazzling Entertainment - From a laugh-out-loud Punchliner Comedy Club, live bands along the promenade, Superstar Live Karaoke where guests sing to channel their inner rock star fronting a four-piece band, or dazzling production shows incorporating the latest special effects, nights are truly special aboard Carnival Magic.
Carnival's Seaside Theatre - This 270-square-foot LED screen and poolside seating is the perfect spot for guests to sit back, relax and watch classic and first-run movies, sporting events, news, concerts and other programming, either during the day or night.
Ocean Plaza - A place to see and be seen, Ocean Plaza is a stunning indoor/outdoor cafe and live entertainment venue where guests can dance to live music and enjoy specialty coffees and sweets - even freshly made milkshakes. Full bar service, specializing in martinis and mojitos, is also available.
The Lanai - Taking the traditional cruise-ship promenade to new heights, The Lanai is a half-mile, open-air promenade encircling Promenade Deck 5. Here, guests can stroll while enjoying spectacular ocean vistas, curl up with a good book, soak up some sun in a comfortable deck chair, or relax in one of four cantilevered whirlpools that extend out over the ship's sides.
Fun Hub - Available on any guests' Internet-connected laptop or at dozens of convenient locations throughout the ship is the Fun Hub, a social network and comprehensive shipboard intranet portal that provides access to a variety of information on Carnival Magic's services, facilities and daily activities. Carnival Magic will also offer bow-to-stern Wi-Fi and cell phone service.

Carnival Magic's many unique innovations are highlighted in an interactive micro-site,, which features a full-screen virtual tour, exclusive images and videos, construction footage and more. The site also contains details on a series of unique and exciting contests and promotions Carnival will offer for fun fans to add their personal touches on Carnival Magic leading up to the ship's maiden voyage.

The 3,690-passenger Carnival Magic is slated to debut in Europe with a series of 7- to 12-day Mediterranean cruises operating May 1 to Oct. 16, 2011. Following a 16-day trans-Atlantic crossing, Carnival Magic will launch 7-day Caribbean service from Galveston, Texas, Nov. 14, 2011, becoming the port's largest year-round cruise ship. For additional information and reservations on the "Fun Ship" vacation experience, contact any travel agent, call 1-800-CARNIVAL or visit

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Image's New Technologies Boost Photo Sales on Norwegian Epic

MIAMI, Aug. 24: Leading cruise photo concessionaire Image has implemented two state-of-the-art technologies on Norwegian Cruise Line's new groundbreaking ship, Norwegian Epic, that streamline the gallery sales process and enable guests to more easily find, manage, share and store their cruise memories. Traditionally, photos have been shown in the gallery on display boards organized by event, in no particular order. Because Epic can carry 4,100 guests, that approach was impractical due to the time it would take guests to find their photos. Image has re-engineered the display system on Epic to make all of a guest's photo prints easy to find. youFinder, Image’s proprietary patented indexing system, groups photos by stateroom and presents them together in a folder at the same location in the photo gallery throughout the cruise.

For the first time guests have the option to purchase their cruise photos in a digital format called Images on CD using the electronic Image Photo Kiosk located in the photo gallery. Image’s youFinder technology organizes all of a guest’s photos into a virtual folder and on the final day of the cruise the photo system burns the digital images onto a CD, which is delivered to the guest prior to disembarkation.

“youFinder not only makes it easier for guests to find their photos, it is a powerful behind-the-scenes tool whose capabilities we’ve just begun to tap,” said Brynley Davies, managing director of the Image Group. “And the number-one question guests have asked for years is, ‘Can I get my photos in a digital format?’ With Images on CD, we now have an answer for them.”

Norwegian Epic left Southampton June 25 on its 7-night trans-Atlantic inaugural cruise that ended in New York July 1, followed by a July 2 naming ceremony with country music star Reba McEntire serving as godmother before making the way to her Miami homeport. The ship sails alternating eastern and western Caribbean cruises from Miami through April 2011.

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Cunard’s Queen Victoria Begins Debut Americas Season with Transit Through
the Historic Panama Canal in Early 2011

August 24: Coming off the heels of Cunard Line’s historic Royal Rendezvous on 13 Jan 2011, when all three Queens – Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria, and the newly launched Queen Elizabeth – will sail into New York harbor on the same day, Queen Victoria debuts her Americas Season for sailings through the Panama Canal, visiting ports between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, including Aruba, Mexico and Los Angeles. This season’s 11-, 15- and 17-day voyages begin in New York, Fort Lauderdale, FL, and Los Angeles, respectively, with each voyage making a transit through the famous locks of the Panama Canal. A special offer is available on early bookings for these voyages, with savings of up to $1,600 per balcony stateroom.*

Depending on the voyage itinerary, guests can enjoy the best of both coasts, including exotic locales such as Acapulco, Curaçao and St. Thomas:

- Panama Canal Treasures, departs 13 January 2011 from New York, calling on Fort Lauderdale, Oranjestad (Aruba), Panama Canal transit, Puntarenas (Costa Rica), Huatulco (Mexico), Acapulco (Mexico), Manzanillo (Mexico) and Los Angeles

- Panama Canal Adventure, departs 3 March 2011 from Los Angeles, with stops in Cabo San Lucas (Mexico), Puerto Vallarta (Mexico), Ixtapa (Mexico), Puerto Quetzal (Guatemala), Panama City (Panama), Panama Canal transit, Willemstad (Curaçao) and Fort Lauderdale

- Roundtrip Panama Canal, departs roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale on 18 March 2011, calling on Charlotte Amalie (St. Thomas), Philipsburg (St. Maarten), St. George’s (Grenada), Bonaire (Antilles) and a partial transit of the Panama Canal

Every voyage on Cunard offers the opportunity to create memorable experiences and provides a sense of occasion. Aboard Queen Victoria, guests revel in the luxury of time, experiencing such Cunard hallmarks as traditional afternoon tea served by white-gloved waiters, dressing up for formal nights and Royal themed balls, an engaging variety of intellectual and stimulating pursuits – including fencing – and extraordinary dining rivaling the finest restaurants in the world.

In grand Cunard tradition, Queen Victoria is designed in the spirit of the floating palaces of the past. Having debuted in December 2007, she captured the world stage in a way few ships ever do – becoming one of the most fêted ships to be introduced in recent years and quickly establishing herself in the Cunard fleet. Every inch of the 2,000-passenger liner is infused with a sense of luxury and tradition, from the Royal Court Theatre, which includes the first private viewing boxes at sea, to the signature two-storey library with a spiral staircase and nearly 6,000 volumes. Queen Victoria features double- and triple-height public rooms that evoke the rich and well-recorded history of ocean liner and Victorian era design. Most distinctive of all, of course, is the Line’s legendary White Star Service for which Cunard is renowned. For more information about Queen Victoria or to book a voyage, consult your travel professional, call toll-free 1-800-7-CUNARD or go to

* Save up to $1,600 per stateroom is based on double occupancy and reflects typical savings in Balcony categories off Early Booking Fares on Panama Canal voyages 11-days or longer. Savings may not apply to all staterooms and vary by sailing. Early Booking Fares are initial offering fares and may not have resulted in sales in the past 90 days. Intermediate discounts may have been taken and fares may remain at a discounted level after this promotion.

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South Africa's Cape Grace Hotel Added to Crystal's 2011 Pre-/Post-Cruise Program

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 24: Cape Town's chic, contemporary Cape Grace Hotel is now available as a pre- or post-cruise "Classic Plus" Hotel Program with Crystal Cruises' ultra-luxury cruises to and from South Africa in the spring 2011. With "Classic Plus," Crystal guests can enjoy five-star hotel accommodations before or after their cruise, private car transfers, meet and assist arrangements, porterage, full breakfast, and other perks at destinations around the world. Like Crystal Cruises, the Cape Grace Hotel is renowned for its personalized service. The Cape Grace "Classic Plus" Hotel Program is available for stays of one, two or three nights following Crystal Serenity's March 29 voyage from Mumbai to Cape Town, and before the April 17 cruise from Cape Town to London. Both cruises are segments of Crystal Cruises epic 2011 World Cruise. An alternative "Classic" Hotel Program at the charming colonial Mount Nelson Hotel is also available.

Situated in the heart of Cape Town's wharf area, the Cape Grace offers an ideal location for touring, dining, shopping and even luxury yacht charters. Besides its warm, attentive service, the luxury property features a full spa and bars and restaurants offering innovative menus complemented by premium local wine selections. Rates for the Cape Grace "Classic Plus" program begin at $550 per person, double occupancy, for the first night of stay, with reduced rates available for additional nights.

"Crystal's hotel programs are designed to offer travelers a seamless vacation experience with a level of style, service, and luxury similar to their Crystal shipboard," says John Stoll, Crystal's vice president, land and port operations. "The programs also deliver a high degree of comfort, as guests know that Crystal is giving great attention to arrangements and details that ease travel in foreign destinations."

Guests can further extend the March 29 voyage from Mumbai to Cape Town with a 3-night, pre-cruise land program visiting the Taj Mahal for a fraction of the valued fare. The April 17 itinerary from Cape Town to London focuses heavily on West Africa's heritage. For more information or Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit

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Have the Slime of Your Life on two Exclusive Nickelodeon All Access Cruises

MIAMI, Aug 23: Norwegian Cruise Line and Nickelodeon are offering the ultimate family cruise vacation with two “Nickelodeon All Access Cruises” setting sail in 2011. These special Nickelodeon-themed cruises give guests access to seven days of slime-filled entertainment all day, every day aboard Norwegian Jewel, sailing from New York on Feb 20, 2011; and on the cruise line’s newest and most innovative ship, Norwegian Epic, sailing from Barcelona on July 24, 2011. Families who book an All Access Cruise between Aug 23, 2010 and Sept 13, 2010 will receive a special offer of up to $250 in on-board credits, based on stateroom category; and half off the deposit (excluding the Garden Villa and other suite categories).

Norwegian and Nickelodeon have partnered to provide families with a once-in-a-lifetime cruise vacation that is all Nickelodeon, all week long. Exclusive Nickelodeon family programming featured on the two “Nickelodeon All Access” cruises includes:

· Ultimate sliming experience offers a chance for the whole family to get slimed together.
· Meet & greets with the stars of Nickelodeon’s hottest live-action shows. Special cruise guests have included stars from iCarly, True Jackson VP, and the voice of SpongeBob SquarePants.
· This year’s star line-up is still to be announced, but promises to be just as exciting.
· Special viewings and premieres of never-before-seen episodes of Nickelodeon’s hit TV shows like iCarly, Victorious and SpongeBob SquarePants.
· Meet & greets with some of your favorite Nickelodeon characters including SpongeBob SquarePants, Dora the Explorer, Aang the Last Airbender, and many others!
· Nickelodeon’s signature messy game shows like Slime Time LIVE! and poolside events.
· Breakfast with Nickelodeon characters every day of the cruise.
· And much more!
· Plus, families can enjoy the freedom and flexibility of Norwegian Cruise Line’s Freestyle Cruising®.

The non-stop excitement and thrills of the “Nickelodeon All Access Cruise” are only available on: Norwegian Jewel sailing President’s Day holiday, Feb 20, 2011, round-trip from New York to Orlando (Port Canaveral), Florida; Nassau, Bahamas; and Great Stirrup Cay, Norwegian’s private island or Norwegian Epic departing on July 24, 2011 from Barcelona with ports of call including Florence/Pisa (Livorno), Rome (Civitavecchia), and Naples, Italy; and Palma, Majorca, Spain.

The on-board credit limited time offer includes $250 per stateroom when sailing in a Garden Villa, available on Norwegian Jewel; $150 for suites; $100 for mini-suites and deluxe balcony staterooms; $75 for balcony staterooms; $50 for ocean view and $25 for inside staterooms. To book one of the only two “Nickelodeon All Access Cruises” in 2011, call Norwegian at 866-770-NICK (6425), visit, or contact a travel professional.

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Royal Caribbean Expands Relationship With Internationally Acclaimed Artist Romero Britto

MIAMI, Aug. 23: As Royal Caribbean Intl prepares for the December 2010 launch of Allure of the Seas, the world's next largest and most revolutionary cruise ship, the global cruise line continues to unveil surprising new features and amenities that will distinguish Allure from her sister-ship, Oasis of the Seas. After announcing an integrated partnership with DreamWorks Animations and Chicago: The Musical as the ship's signature show, as well as a line-up of new dining, entertainment and shopping options, Royal Caribbean is pleased to share details of yet another new venue that will call Allure of the Seas home - the very first Britto Concept store at sea by pop culture icon, Romero Britto.

Royal Caribbean has enjoyed a long relationship with Britto, which began in 2003 when the artist designed the pool deck for the debut of Mariner of the Seas. Marking the next evolution of this partnership, the Britto Store onboard Allure of the Seas will be an engaging and interactive space for guests to enjoy the color, innovation and spirit which encapsulates Britto's art. The store will be located in the Central Park neighborhood and will display artwork along with smaller collectible pieces and sculptures of all sizes. A unique sculpture boasting Britto's well-known butterflies will grace the gardens of Central Park directly in front of the store, welcoming guests and providing a cheerful photo opportunity.

Britto will be creating two original pieces exclusive to Royal Caribbean for guests to purchase, including a custom painting which will be available as canvas Giclees, as well as a Royal Caribbean-inspired teddy bear. The artist also will attend Allure of the Seas' inaugural sailing on Dec 5, 2010, providing Britto fans a unique opportunity to interact with the artist in painting parties, autograph sessions and meet and greet events.

Within the store, which will be outfitted in black and white as a contrast to Britto's exceptionally colorful artwork, guests will have the opportunity to learn about the artist himself from a documentary of Britto's accomplishments as well as participate in wine and champagne events, art discussions, and other activities related to Romero Britto. A wide array of artwork, posters, giftware, collectibles and luggage will be available for purchase, ranging from original and limited edition Giclees, to tableware such as teapots and coasters; collectible figurines and sculptures; stationery; umbrellas; children's books; pet toys and much more. A modern day pop culture icon, Romero Britto creates contemporary masterpieces that evoke a spirit of hope and convey a sense of warmth. Embraced by the international community, Britto's paintings and sculptures are currently featured on five continents in more than 100 galleries worldwide. His original artwork, dubbed "the art of healing," brings together bright colors and playful themes with compositional elements of Cubism. Britto's artwork conveys an honesty that reflects his desire to use colors which exude happiness. His belief that "art should be accessible to all, and enjoyed by people of all ages" is a key reason his artwork appeals to art lovers ages eight to eighty.

Allure of the Seas shares the title of the world's largest and most revolutionary cruise ship with sister-ship Oasis of the Seas. An architectural marvel at sea, she will span 16 decks, encompass 225,282 gross registered tons, carry 5,400 guests at double occupancy, and feature 2,700 staterooms. Allure of the Seas will tout Royal Caribbean's exclusive neighborhood concept of seven distinct themed areas, which will include Central Park, Boardwalk, the Royal Promenade, the Pool and Sports Zone, Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Center, Entertainment Place and Youth Zone. The ship will alternate a Western Caribbean with an Eastern Caribbean seven-night itinerary from her home port of Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Additional information is available at

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Save more than 50 Percent on 2010-11 Caribbean Cruise Holiday Vacations With MSC Cruises’ Family Plan For Four

FORT LAUDERDALE, FL, Aug 23: The entire family can experience the beauty of the Caribbean during the holidays on 7-night cruises onboard MSC Poesia and save with MSC Cruises’ Family Plan offer for four guests on an affordable family vacation through Dec 31, 2010. Guests who book a balcony stateroom during the Thanksgiving, Christmas, or New Year’s Eve Caribbean cruises can save up to 50 percent off a connecting balcony stateroom for an affordable family vacation.

This special Family Plan offer applies for adjoining Category 9, 10 or 11 Balcony Superior staterooms (accommodating up to four guests) on 7-night, Eastern and Western Caribbean cruises departing from Ft. Lauderdale. These cruises sail Nov 21 (Thanksgiving), Dec 19 (Christmas), and Dec 26 (New Year’s). Family Plan rates for four begin at $697 per person plus $81.35 per person government fees and taxes (GFTs). Rates are cruise only, and subject to availability.

Destinations on the Eastern and Western Caribbean cruises including ports like Key West, Florida; Ocho Rios, Jamaica; Georgetown, Grand Cayman; Cozumel, Mexico; St. Thomas, Charlotte Amalie, U.S. Virgin Islands; Philipsburg, St. Maarten; and Nassau, Bahamas.

Family-friendly activities to enjoy during this affordable family vacation include miniature golf, tennis and basketball. MSC Poesia features a pool for children and outdoor play area. MSC Cruises also offers a complimentary kids program filled with entertainment, fun, and games from crafts to treasure hunts. Children’s programs are available for children 3-17 years old and are divided into age-specific groups.

Not only does MSC Cruises offer authentic Italian favorites like pasta and pizza, but also All-American kid-friendly staples like hamburgers, hot dogs, and delicious pastries and desserts. For more information, call 877-665-4655, or contact a local travel professional.

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Cunard Announces Fortnum & Mason at Sea and Other Luxury Retail Firsts for Queen Elizabeth

August 20: Ever since Queen Mary entered service in 1936, Cunard’s Queens have been famous for offering the best on board shopping featuring some of the finest luxury brands and gifts from around the world. The new Queen Elizabeth, which enters service in October 2010, will be no exception. Queen Elizabeth’s Royal Arcade will feature iconic products from Fortnum & Mason. Since 1707, Fortnum & Mason has been the quintessential English store situated in the heart of London’s Piccadilly and issued with two Royal warrants. On board, Fortnum & Mason will offer unique teas, preserves, biscuits and gifts.

“Decades of experience have told us that on board shopping is important to our guests and Cunard has an unrivalled reputation for providing the finest shopping at sea,” said Peter Shanks, president of Cunard Line. “Queen Elizabeth will be no exception in this regard and I am very excited with the range that will be offered by high-quality world-famous brands that are a perfect fit for our brand and our guests.”

In addition to Fortnum & Mason, shoppers on board Queen Elizabeth will be able to purchase other brands that have never before been available at sea. The new Cunarder will be the only ship in the world to feature the following luxury products:
Hackett: Men’s Designer Clothing by Hackett of London, producers of the finest authentic and classic menswear and “The home of the essential British kit”
Harris Tweed: World-renowned for their genuine hand-woven Scottish woollen fabrics
Anya Hindmarch: English fashion accessories designer who always had a passion for bespoke details; Queen Elizabeth will feature the latest bespoke designs on board
Queen Elizabeth will also offer:
Chopard: For 150 years, Chopard has offered watches and jewelery of exceptional quality, exclusively created to the highest standards in Geneva. To celebrate the launch of Queen Elizabeth, the company has produced the Chopard Queen Elizabeth watch – a limited edition watch combining the dual branding of Chopard and Cunard and available at $18,000; both luxury and heritage brands.
Penhaligons: Fragrances and gifts for men and women including perfume, aftershave, cologne, eau de parfum, body lotion and bath oil. Issued with two Royal warrants and made in England using the finest rare ingredients from bergamot to jasmine.
Aspinal of London: Founded on the fundamental premise of offering their customers the most beautiful objects of unsurpassed quality and design for home and living, Aspinal of London is best known for their hand-made leather photo albums, leather wallets and purses, leather journals, wedding albums and guest books in both classic and contemporary designs. The signature collection on Queen Elizabeth will capture the Cunard luxury trademark.

To celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s introduction, three brands have launched special items:
Clogau: The jeweler to The Queen has produced a gold Queen Elizabeth limited edition pendant exclusively for Cunard.
Rotary: A specially-commissioned Queen Elizabeth watch will only be available on board the new Cunarder.
Halcyon Days: The company has commissioned a special pill box that links the heritage of the brand with luxury at sea.
A new Cunard Signature Collection on board Queen Elizabeth will offer a premium logo collection ranging from travel accessories to designer clothing.

Cunard was the first Line to offer suit hire facilities at sea, and Queen Elizabeth will continue this valuable service with Moss Bros Hire, providing everything needed for elegant formal events.

Queen Elizabeth will be the second largest Cunarder ever built and will join her sisters, Queen Mary 2 and Queen Victoria, as part of the youngest fleet in the world. She will feature many unique Cunard traditions linking her with her sisters and their predecessors, together with all the modern day luxuries Cunard’s guests have come to expect. There will also be features that will give the vessel her own style and personality. The first Queen Elizabeth was one of Cunard’s greatest ships, and the new Queen Elizabeth will reflect her predecessor in interior grandeur, décor and style, but with a modern twist. From the outside, her distinctive black and red livery will hint at an experience that differentiates a Cunard liner from a modern-day cruise ship. This will be most evident in the ship’s adherence to liner traditions, with elegant double and triple height public rooms on a grand scale, luxuriously endowed with rich wood panelling, intricate mosaics, hand-woven carpets, gleaming chandeliers, and cool marbles. Art Deco features will pay homage to the original Queen Elizabeth, reflecting The New Golden Age of Ocean Travel.

Queen Elizabeth will depart on her sold-out Maiden Voyage on Oct 12, 2010. This 13-night celebration will leave from the company’s home port, Southampton, and will call at Vigo, Lisbon, Cadiz, Las Palmas, Santa Cruz de Tenerife (overnight call) and Funchal. For more information and to book a voyage aboard Queen Elizabeth, consult your Travel Agent, call toll-free 1-800-7-CUNARD (1-800-728-6273) or go to

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‘Tis The Season To Book A Royal Caribbean Cruise Vacation

MIAMI, August 20: This winter, Royal Caribbean Intl is asking “Why Not” to starting a new tradition and spending the holidays at sea. Whether you’re looking forward to decking the halls or simply spending some quality time with family and friends, the global cruise line is inviting cruisers of all ages to enjoy a diverse lineup of holiday celebrations, ranging from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day, aboard its cruise ships.

“There is really no better holiday value than spending your’s aboard a Royal Caribbean cruise with family and friends,” said Betsy O’Rourke, senior vice president of Marketing, Royal Caribbean Intl. “All too often, people get stressed out with holiday preparation and entertaining. Royal Caribbean takes care of all this work, providing guests the opportunity to relax and truly enjoy the holiday season with their loved ones. Additionally, the Diamond Celebration in December will offer exclusive benefits and programs to our Diamond-status Crown & Anchor Society members to recognize our most loyal guests.”

To kick off the holiday season, Royal Caribbean is pulling out all the stops for guests to enjoy a bountiful and memorable Thanksgiving. Not only will the chefs in the cruise line’s main dining room feature a gourmet turkey dinner (and take care of the grocery shopping, cooking, and dishes too), but the award-winning Adventure Ocean program will provide kids with themed activities including Thanksgiving story time and arts and crafts.

What better way to alleviate the stress that typically comes along with the holiday season than indulging in the Royal treatment? Guests this winter can enjoy a wide range of exclusive and innovative onboard amenities, entertainment, and award-winning family programming, while observing the season’s traditional festivities. Most travelers won’t even have to wander much further than their own backyards to find a holiday cruise vacation to suit their interests. Royal Caribbean’s fleet offers a diverse number of holiday itineraries departing from nine easy-to-reach domestic home ports, including Bayonne, NJ, Baltimore, MD, Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale), Miami, Port Canaveral, and Tampa, Fla., Galveston, TX, Los Angeles, Calif. and San Juan, Puerto Rico.

A 7-night Eastern Caribbean Thanksgiving sailing is available aboard Freedom of the Seas, departing Nov 21, 2010, from Port Canaveral, Fla.. Freedom of the Seas offers innovative onboard amenities and entertainment options, such as the FlowRider surf simulator, an ice-skating rink, rock-climbing wall, and street parties and parades in the Royal Promenade, a boulevard that runs nearly the length of the ship, lined with boutiques where guests can get a head start on their holiday shopping.

Royal Caribbean will deck its ships with seasonal decorations to embrace the holiday spirit at sea throughout the month of December. Royal Caribbean offers Hanukkah-themed festivities lasting all eight days of the holiday, including a Rabbi aboard every ship to conduct a nightly menorah lighting ceremony and services. For those celebrating Christmas, a Catholic priest also will be aboard to lead the holiday’s observances including a midnight mass on Christmas Eve.

Other Christmas festivities sure to get families bonding and into the spirit include: classic movie screenings, guest and crew caroling, cookie decorating, special Christmas-themed Adventure Ocean programming, and holiday ice skating aboard select ships. Families may still book staterooms aboard the new Allure of the Seas for the 7-night roundtrip Western Caribbean Holiday itinerary departing from Port Everglades in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. sailing on Dec 18, 2010. In Nov, Allure of the Seas will join sister-ship Oasis of the Seas, as one of the two world’s largest and most innovative cruise ships. Allure of the Seas featuring seven themed neighborhoods and unrivaled entertainment options, featuring the DreamWork Experience, which include characters from hit movies such as Shrek and Madagascar, as well as the Tony Award-winning Broadway production “Chicago: The Musical.”

Ring in the New Year at sea with the Cruise Director and Captain’s Countdown and themed parties in every onboard lounge. Young cruisers will enjoy the extended late night party zone where kids and teens will be celebrating at their own New Year’s festivities. West Coast vacationers can celebrate the New Year aboard Mariner of the Seas’ December 26, 2010, sailing on a seven-night Mexican Riviera itinerary from Los Angeles, Calif. Mariner of the Seas is the largest and most revolutionary ship to ever sail from the west coast. For additional information or to make reservations, call your travel agent, visit or call (800) ROYAL-CARIBBEAN.

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Canyon Ranch SpaClubs On Oceania Cruises’ Ships Now Accepting Advance Reservations

Miami, August 19: Oceania Cruises is now offering its guests the ability to reserve treatments at their onboard Canyon Ranch SpaClubs® up to 90 days before departure. The world-famous Canyon Ranch operates the spas on the line’s fleet of upper-premium ships.

“Offering the ability to pre-book spa treatments is a convenience our guests will appreciate,” stated Bob Binder, the cruise line’s president. “Canyon Ranch SpaClubs have proven so popular with our guests that it makes sense to book early.”

Each Canyon Ranch SpaClub features a visually stunning state-of-the-art spa, wellness and fitness facility, plus a luxurious full-service beauty salon. The SpaClub features massage, body and skin-care treatment rooms, gym and weight room, men’s and women’s locker rooms, thalassotherapy pool, two whirlpools and Thermal Suite. The SpaClub’s array of rejuvenating spa treatments include massages and therapeutic bodywork, mud, aromatherapy, ayuvedic and seaweed treatments, facials and masks, conditioning body scrubs and therapeutic body cocoons.

Canyon Ranch fitness instructors conduct daily group and private fitness, yoga and tai chi classes for guests. In addition, on select voyages Canyon Ranch healthy living experts offer on-board presentations and workshops addressing lifestyle change, healthy living, stress management and a variety of other topics. Oceania Cruises’ guests also can savor Canyon Ranch’s incomparable Spa Cuisine which is available at breakfast, lunch and dinner in both the Grand Dining Room and Terrace Café.

Guests can make pre-request spa services up to 90 days prior to departure and when the cruise reservation is paid in full by calling toll-free 877-329-1924. A confirmation card will be waiting in their stateroom or suite on the day of embarkation. For reservations or to order a brochure, contact a travel professional, visit or call toll-free at 800-531-5658.

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Carnival Cruise Lines Launches Innovative Social Media Application for Planning Cruise Vacations

MIAMI, August 19: Carnival Cruise Lines and Razorfish today announced the launch of a groundbreaking new social commerce Facebook application that allows users to easily view, compare, select and share Carnival cruises with their Facebook friends. The application, the first of its kind in the cruise industry, allows users to engage their social network in their vacation planning through personalized newsfeed updates and even invite friends to book the same trip.

The application, available on Carnival’s official Facebook fan page (, enables the user to explore all available Carnival cruise options without leaving Facebook by providing the functionality to sort cruises by date, duration, port of call, and accommodation type. Once users decide on a particular cruise, they can share the detailed cruise information with their Facebook friends by simply clicking a button. Users can also customize their newsfeed messages, which include a link to the cruise, to invite friends to book the trip as well.

“A Carnival cruise is a very social experience and this application is a natural extension of our efforts to engage our nearly 250,000 Facebook fans in a unique and exciting way,” said Jim Berra, Carnival’s chief marketing officer. “By allowing our customers to share their cruising plans with Facebook friends, we are making it easier for them to plan group trips and encourage others to join in the fun.”

Digital marketing agency Razorfish sought to tap into the power of the online community to drive engagement with the Carnival brand. As a result, the agency helped conceptualize, create and design the application as a way to offer the cruise line’s products and services in native locations for consumers. Once users have taken advantage of the Facebook application to choose and share their Carnival cruise plans, they will be directed to the appropriate shopping cart page on to finalize the transaction.

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Holland America Line Offers Grand Experiences With Fall 2011 & 2012 Grand Voyages

SEATTLE, Aug. 18: In fall 2011 and early 2012, Holland America Line again will offer grand voyages that touch all seven continents. The ms Amsterdam and ms Prinsendam each sail two itineraries designed to discover and explore remarkable destinations--from famous landmarks to smaller, lesser-known ports. Amsterdam sails a 70-day Grand Asia and Australia Voyage in fall 2011 and then returns to world cruising in January 2012 with a 112-day Grand World Voyage that visits the South Pacific, New Zealand, Australia and the Mediterranean. Following its 68-day Grand South America and Antarctica Voyage in January, Prinsendam will depart in March to the Mediterranean and the Holy Lands for a 62-day Grand Mediterranean and Black Sea Voyage.

"Based on extensive research on our previous grand voyages and a survey of past guests, we created itineraries that feature the most coveted sights and experiences the world has to offer," said Richard D. Meadows, CTC, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs for Holland America Line. "From creative and varied menus that reflect ports of call, to tailored activities and unique amenities, Grand Voyages guests will experience Holland America Line at its finest."

Without requiring international air travel, Holland America Line's Grand Voyages make taking a dream vacation easy and more affordable. The voyages feature UNESCO World Heritage Sites, first-time calls at new destinations and extended time in port with late departures, overnights and overland tours. Grand Voyages offer an enhanced onboard cruise experience with the opportunity to fully experience the pleasures of life at sea. Activities are enhanced with local cultural entertainment and special guest headliners and lecturers. Grand Voyage dining is distinguished by a different experience every day, featuring local ingredients and regional cuisine and wines. The premium, mid-size ships selected for sailing Grand Voyages are large enough to offer the diverse amenities today's discriminating travelers expect, yet small enough to preserve an ambiance of sophistication and an extra measure of personal space. And service levels are at their highest, with nearly one crew member for every two guests, with top staff hand-selected from across the Holland America Line fleet.

Grand Asia & Australia Voyage
In fall 2011, Amsterdam wraps up the year with a 70-day Grand Asia and Australia Voyage sailing from Seattle, Wash., to Los Angeles, Calif., departing Sept. 26. Following calls throughout Asia, the cruise continues to western Australia and then explores the South Pacific. Overnights include Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, China; Tokyo and Kobe, Japan; Singapore, and Sydney and Perth, Australia.

Grand World Voyage
Amsterdam will sail its seventh circumnavigation with a Grand World Voyage roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., departing Jan. 6. The 112-day adventure first calls in the Caribbean, then moves on to South America, sailing around Cape Horn for a scenic cruise through the Chilean Fjords and then south to Antarctica. Amsterdam then sails west to Tahiti, followed by calls in Australia, the Far East and Indian Ocean, before transiting the Suez Canal and sailing through the Mediterranean and back to South Florida.

Overnight calls include the Great Barrier Reef from Sydney, Hong Kong, Mumbai, India; Barcelona, Spain; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Singapore, and Piraeus (Athens), Greece. The voyage also features a maiden call at Mangalore in Southern India. Hundreds of shore excursions, overland tours and the opportunity to visit UNESCO World Heritage sites add color to this world cruise.

Grand South America & Antarctica Voyage
Prinsendam returns to South America, Antarctica and the Amazon in 2012 on a 68-day itinerary departing roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale Jan. 4. The ship will transit the Panama Canal to South America's Pacific coast then circumnavigate the continent.

Prinsendam will spend eight days cruising the Amazon River and four days of scenic cruising in Antarctica. The itinerary also features five maiden ports of call: Bocas del Toro, Panama; Matarani, Peru; Cabedelo, Brazil, and Ancud, Chile. Overnight calls include Manaus, Brazil, in the Amazon; Rio de Janeiro; Buenos Aires, and Callao (Lima), Peru. Guests sailing on this voyage also will enjoy a scenic daylight cruise past the Romanche, Alemania, Francia and Italia glaciers in Chile.

Grand Mediterranean & Black Sea Voyage
Upon its return to Fort Lauderdale, Prinsendam embarks March 12 on a 62-day journey to the Mediterranean and Holy Lands roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale. For the first time, Prinsendam will call at Durres, Albania's second-largest city and one of Europe's oldest cities, Saint Raphael in the beautiful Cote d'Azur region of France, and Castellon de la Plana, in the Costa del Azahar region of Spain.

Overnight calls at Seville, Spain; Kusadasi (Ephesus) and Istanbul, Turkey; Piraeus (Athens); Venice, Italy; Barcelona, and Lisbon, Portugal, allow time for exploration of some of the world's most interesting destinations. This voyage can be combined with the Grand South America and Antarctica Voyage for a 130-day cruise.

Reservations are being taken for all of Holland America Line's 2011 and 2012 grand voyages, and early-booking bonus amenities for full-cruise guests include prepaid hotel service charges, shipboard credit, luggage delivery service and a complimentary shore excursion or event for select stateroom categories. Amenities vary by cruise, stateroom category and booking date. The four grand voyages are available to book for the full cruise or in segments ranging from 18- to 112-day sailings. For a 2012 grand voyages cruise brochure or for more information, consult a professional travel agent, call 1-800-522-3399 or visit

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Celebrity Cruises “Massages” Convenience & Pampering Into New Pre-cruise
Spa, Salon & Personal Fitness Appointment Booking Tool

MIAMI, August 18: Celebrity Cruises is adding spa, salon and personal fitness appointments to its ever-growing line-up of onboard experiences available for pre-cruise booking. In today’s fast-paced world, vacationers are looking to make the most of their time away from daily pressures, and Celebrity aims for this latest offering to present cruise guests with yet another way to make the most of their time onboard.

“One of the most valued elements of a Celebrity Cruises vacation is the outstanding service that we offer to our guests,” said Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, Senior Vice President, Hotel Operations. “Even the process of planning for specific experiences such as spa and salon appointments reflects our commitment to service and our ‘Designed for you’ brand platform. Our guests tell us that the more they can arrange in advance, the less they have to think about once they step aboard our award-winning ships. We've designed our more than 100 AquaSpa, salon and fitness offerings to help our guests enjoy relaxation and renewal, from men’s barber services to hot stone massages, from the Tri-Enzyme Resurfacing Facial to Brazilian Blowout Keratin treatments for hair, and more.”

Celebrity’s pre-cruise spa, salon and personal fitness appointment booking option joins a series of experiences available for guests to book online in advance of their cruise, including beverage packages, shore excursions, specialty dining reservations, and complimentary “Celebrity Select Dining” main dining room preferences. With the new pre-cruise spa, salon and personal fitness booking option, Celebrity aims to give its guests the peace of mind associated with knowing that their spa, salon, and personal fitness appointment times are secured. The option to pre-book these appointments online can help guests avoid disappointment after boarding by discovering that desired times are already taken by other guests. Among those who tend to seek specific appointment times are guests who regularly undergo acupuncture or treatments of elective injectables such as Botox, Restylane, Perlane and Dysport. With Celebrity’s newest offering, guests can book these and other appointments in advance of their cruise, no longer having to worry about finding available times after they board the ship.

By mid-November, guests will be able to book spa, salon and personal fitness appointments prior to their cruise on six of the nine Celebrity ships that will offer this option. The first ship to offer this option is Celebrity Solstice, the flagship of the premium cruise line’s stylish new Solstice Class ships. Guests sailing on Celebrity Solstice can currently book and pay for spa, salon and personal fitness appointments up to four days prior to their sailing date. Guests booked on voyages departing on Aug 21 or later on Celebrity’s newest Solstice Class ship, Celebrity Eclipse, can also book these appointments. On Aug 26, guests sailing on Celebrity Equinox’s voyages of Sept 9 or later can book these appointments. The rollout will continue through 2011, when Celebrity Cruises will launch its fourth Solstice Class vessel, Celebrity Silhouette. A complete list of dates is available at

Guests can access the ordering system via Celebrity Cruises’ website,, in the “Before Your Cruise” section. Celebrity’s electronic pre-cruise documents provide links that facilitate the pre-cruise booking of all of Celebrity’s pre-cruise booking offerings, including beverage packages, shore excursions, specialty dining reservations, and complimentary “Celebrity Select Dining” main dining room preferences.Guests also can book spa, salon and fitness services once onboard. Guests seeking to amplify special occasions such as birthdays or anniversaries by lining up experiences such as a day of pampering leading up to a romantic dinner in a specialty restaurant, also can consult with Celebrity’s onboard personal concierges to book spa, salon and fitness services.

The pre-cruise spa, salon and fitness appointment booking option is available to all guests 18 years of age and older, worldwide. Modifications and cancellations can be made online anytime up to four days prior to sailing or onboard at least 24 hours prior to the appointment. Certain terms and conditions apply. Guests sailing on Celebrity Xpedition, the 92-guest mega-yacht sailing year-round in the Galapagos Islands, can book massage treatments after boarding the ship. Pre-cruise booking of this service is not available.

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Seabourn Expands Its Roster Of ‘Masters & Commanders’

MIAMI, August 18: As The Yachts of Seabourn continues to expand its fleet of intimate, all-suite vessels, the company is also privileged to add to the roster of its most responsible, and most highly visible officers on board. The ultra luxury line has managed to attract some of the cruise industry’s most respected and popular captains, and built itself a sort of seagoing dream team to oversee its award-winning fleet. The latest to join Seabourn is Captain Dag Dvergastein, a well-known Norwegian seaman most recently with Regent Seven Seas Cruises. Englishman Captain Ian McNaught, a longtime favorite of many guests aboard the Cunard liners, joined Seabourn this year. Also joining the roster in 2010 were Captain David Bathgate, a Scot who now lives in the South of England and has sailed on virtually every sort of ocean-going vessel, and Captain Sean Whalley, another Englishman whose 25-year career includes commands in the Falkland Islands Fisheries Patrol.

“With the addition of Seabourn Odyssey, Sojourn and Quest, we have created new opportunities for the right sort of senior officers,” noted Pamela C. Conover, Seabourn’s president and CEO. “With a complement of just 200 to 450 guests, our six intimate yachts offer an unusual degree of accessibility that really appeals to captains who like to socialize with guests and share their adventures," she added.

Two of Seabourn’s captains were added to its rotation in 2009. Danish Captain Bjarne Larsen had extensive experience sailing ice-rated exploration vessels in the Arctic and Antarctic. Andrew Pedder, from Yorkshire in England, had sailed aboard Cunard liners, then served as a maritime river pilot, joined Holland America Line and later the sailing vessels of Windstar Cruises.

Captain Magnus Bengtsson was born on Sweden’s Gotland island, and had previously commanded passenger vessels in the Far East before joining Seabourn in 2008. That same year saw the welcome return of one of Seabourn’s very first captains, Norwegian Erik Lund Anderssen, who sailed as First Officer and then commanded Seabourn Pride during its, and the company’s, maiden year.

Captain Mark Dexter, another Englishman who now lives in New Zealand, joined in 2007 and had the pleasure of taking Seabourn Odyssey into his hometown of Christchurch during its maiden World Cruise in 2009. Captain Hamish Elliott, who also joined in 2007, lives in England’s County Durham and had worked on all manner of passenger vessels from the smallest, Sea Goddess, to what was at the time the world’s largest, Queen Mary 2 before taking command of Seabourn Pride.

Captain Gier-Arne Thue-Nilsen, from Norway, was the first in his family to go to sea, and started out on North Sea oil rigs before taking up the sailor’s life. He is an avid cyclist and photographer who maintains a website gallery of his travels on Seabourn since 2002 at

Captain Karlo Buer, also from Norway, first joined Seabourn in 1989 to supervise the building of Seabourn Spirit. Since then, even with intermittent stints in shoreside positions, he has commanded every Seabourn yacht, including Seabourn Odyssey and Seabourn Sojourn during their respective maiden Voyages.

The Yachts of Seabourn fleet consists of Seabourn Pride, Sprit and Legend, each offering 104 ocean-view suites, and Seabourn Odyssey and Seabourn Sojourn, with 225 ocean-view suites. A third 225-suite vessel, Seabourn Quest, will debut in June of 2011. Seabourn’s captains command award-winning crews passionate about pleasing their guests. For more information, contact a travel agent, call Seabourn at 1-800-929-9391 or visit

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Second Annual Malt Shop Memories Cruise Announced

ATLANTA, GA: Sixthman and Time Life are proud to announce the second annual Malt Shop Memories Cruise, sailing from Port Canaveral, Florida, to Nassau, Bahamas, onboard the Carnival Sensation. The cruise leaves on Sunday, May 8, 2011, and returns on Thursday, May 12. Performers include Chubby Checker, Little Anthony & the Imperials, Shirley Alston Reeves - Original Lead of the Shirelles, The Crystals, The Original Drifters, The Tymes, and more.

Based on Time Life's acclaimed Malt Shop Memories box set, the cruise brings the sounds of the 50s and 60s to life, with live performances from the best acts from the Malt Shop era. Along with live shows, guests will enjoy onboard activities such as dance contests and lessons, theme nights, and more.

Chubby Checker joins the Malt Shop Memories Cruise just in time for the Twist's 50th birthday. Shirley Alston Reeves, co-founder and original lead singer of The Shirelles, makes a great addition to the lineup, as do The Crystals, who had several top ten hits such as "He's a Rebel" and "Da Doo Ron Ron." Sixthman and Time Life are also looking forward to welcoming Philly group The Tymes who had a hit with "So Much in Love," as well as The Skyliners whose "Since I Don't Have You" topped charts in the fifties.

"The Geator with the Heater" Jerry Blavat will again emcee the cruise, and several of the artists from 2010's cruise will return, including Little Anthony & The Imperials, The Original Drifters, and a capella doo wop groups The Del Rays, The Devotions, The Fireflys, and award-winning Elvis Tribute Artist Gino Monopoli.

The first ever Malt Shop Memories cruise took place in May of 2010; guests reported feeling transported back in time to simpler days with the best music in the world. They forged new friendships and intermingled with the likes of Frankie Avalon, Little Anthony, Lou Christie, Lesley Gore, "The Geator with the Heater" Jerry Blavat, and more. Activities included hula-hoop contests, a sock hop, wine tastings, bingo, and more.

Guests can book their vacation of a lifetime at fares start at $799 and include entertainment, meals, onboard activities, and more.

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Hurtigruten’s “Hunting The Light” Voyages

New York, NY, Aug 18: Hurtigruten is always looking to intrigue their guests, offering unique opportunities to explore remote regions and learn about different cultures--and the west coast of Norway in the winter offers another wonderful opportunity. From November 15 through March 15, Hurtigruten takes passengers on “Hunting the Light” voyages – an exploration that offers dog sledding, the nightly viewing possibility of the spectacular Aurora Borealis (or Northern Lights), overnights at the Kirkenes Snow Hotel, swims in the Barents Sea, incredible vistas, wonderful meals of local fare, and numerous presentations on the history and cultures of Norway.

Spending time in the Arctic Circle is a relatively rare and special event and Hurtigruten celebrates with a polar baptism--an ice cube ‘shower’ hosted by King Neptune himself. Guests voluntarily line up (few sit it out) and await their light, but cold, dousing; all guests receive an Arctic Circle Certificate announcing their accomplishment. Other presentations and activities on board and ashore are equally unique and special: imagine eating freshly made fish cakes while learning about the 1890 “Battle of Trollfjord;” listening to the captain’s description about life along the Norway coast; understanding the science behind the Aurora Borealis; learning how to make knots and hitches; and gaining insight into native Sámi culture--all while watching the magical polar light colors of gold, pink and blue reflect off the snow-laden coast and being on the lookout for the Aurora Borealis display. Added treats during the holiday season include visiting the town’s Christmas markets and seeing the twinkling decorations light up the shore line.

Excursions, both included and optional are equally as intriguing. Guests can enjoy a Viking feast with a Viking Chieftain in Lofotr, experience dog sledding on the frozen landscape, visit the world’s northernmost town, Hammerfest – the first town in Northern Europe to get electric street lights (1891), strike out for the North Cape and its incredible view near the top of the world, ride snowmobiles on a winter safari, visit and/or stay overnight at the Kirkenes Snow Hotel, take the Arctic Ocean plunge, or take in a midnight concert in Tromsø’s Arctic Cathedral.

The 6-day southbound, 7-day northbound and 12-day round-trip make 34 ports of call along Norway’s stunningly scenic, fjord-filled west coast. The fjords have had awards and honors bestowed on them over the years, most recently by National Geographic Traveler which named it the world’s most celebrated and iconic travel destinations. Two special promotions are being offered on bookings made by Sept. 30, 2010: “Buy Six, Get Five Free” offers a 12-day round-trip itinerary between Oct. 5 and Dec. 31 for the price of the 6-day trip, amounting to a 30% cabin discount on 22 selected sailings; “2011 Early Booking” reduces prices by 20% on most ships for sailings in 2011. Further savings of 10% are offered to passengers who sailed on any Hurtigruten ship in the past three years.

Hurtigruten is a world leader in expedition cruising, sailing to the most remote of destinations including Antarctica, Greenland and the Arctic’s Spitsbergen as well as year round along Norway's coast. Additional information on all of these adventures, as well as brochures and reservations, can be obtained from travel agents or Hurtigruten's visitor-friendly web site,; or by phone: (800) 323-7436; fax (888)-524-2145; for brochures (800) 582-0835.

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Going Green in Malta With New Crystal Adventure

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 17: This fall, Crystal Cruises' guests have the opportunity to give back and see Valetta, Malta from a different point of view on award-winning Crystal Serenity voyages this fall. A brand new Crystal Adventure invites travelers to "Go Green" in Malta, by planting trees in the island's only national park, donating food at a local charity and learning eco-conscious planting and harvesting practices at a local organic farm. The optional Crystal Adventure is available on Crystal Serenity's 12-day, Oct 19 Mediterranean/Holy Land voyage from Athens to Rome, and the 11-day, Oct 31 Mediterranean/Spain voyage from Rome to Barcelona.

"This excursion affords guests the opportunity to contribute to the local needs in Valetta, and also gain a better understanding of the environmental efforts of the destination," says John Stoll, vice president, land and port operations. "Like so many Crystal Adventures, this experience offers a new point of view for guests who want to explore destinations from a deeper, more informed perspective."

The nearly eight-hour excursion begins with a visit to Ta' Qali National Park, where guests will plant trees and learn about the park's conservation efforts. Following a guided tour and lunch at eco-conscious Ta' Zeppi Organic Farm, guests will visit a local orphan refuge, where they will donate time and food for the young residents. The Valetta excursion highlights Crystal's efforts to bring global awareness to its six-star vacation experiences, and is a prelude to its global 'You Care, We Care' program debuting in 2011.

For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit

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New Pacific Coast Voyages Added to Crystal Spring Calendar

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 13: Luxury specialist Crystal Cruises announces two brand new 7-day getaways exploring the Pacific Coast for April 2011. Sailing between Los Angeles and Vancouver aboard the award-winning Crystal Symphony, the northbound and southbound "Pacific Escape" and "Coastal Exploration" itineraries visit Santa Barbara and San Francisco, California; Seattle, Washington; Astoria, Oregon; and Victoria, British Columbia.

"Crystal's Pacific Coast cruises showcase a stunning and remarkably diverse blend of iconic West Coast highlights, from the California beaches and the Golden Gate Bridge to the plush forests of Oregon and British Columbia," says Bill Smith, senior vice president, sales & marketing. "The itineraries offer our guests new destinations, the opportunity to sail with the World's Best at an incredible value and great convenience for North American travelers. Even international guests can enjoy this sampler of some of the most beautiful places in the western U.S. and Canada."

Departing on April 10 and 17, the new voyages replace two Mexican Riviera itineraries. "The beauty of a floating resort is that you can move your hotel to other destinations when there is demand. We are keeping several fall 2010 itineraries through the Mexican Riviera, in additional to others in spring and fall 2011; the West Coast and Northwest itineraries add dimension and scope to the worldwide destinations we're offering in 2011," says Smith.

Also new in 2011 is Open Dining by Reservation evening dining that adds more choices, convenience and flexibility - or Perfect Choice - to the line's acclaimed classic main and late dinner seatings. The Crystal Experience is distinguished by unparalleled service, abundant space, extensive choices and superior quality - at an exceptional value. Celebrating 15 and 16 years as "World's Best" in its category by the readers of Travel + Leisure and Conde Nast Traveler, respectively, among many other coveted hospitality awards, Crystal has been recognized as #1 more than another cruise line, hotel or resort in history.

For bookings by Sept 30, 2010, guests will enjoy complimentary air transportation from more than 20 North American gateway cities. For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit

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Exclusive “Journeys By Design” Enrichment Program Announces Special
December Caribbean Sailing of Wind Surf

NEW YORK, Aug 13: Continuing to grow its successful Journeys by Design program, David Morris International (DMI), the expert in luxury-based unique travel, announces notable authors and journalists Tina Brown, editor-in-chief and founder of The Daily Beast, and Sir Harold Evans, author of “My Paper Chase”, will join an exclusive Caribbean getaway cruise onboard the Windstar luxury ship Wind Surf, departing from Barbados on Dec 19, 2010.

DMI’s Journeys by Design program, in collaboration with Virtuoso® luxury travel network, will offer exclusive fourteen nights of unparalleled sophisticated pleasure with private Q&A sessions, personal book signings and lectures from the celebrated couple on their careers and best-selling books.

Both from Great Britain, Ms. Brown and Sir Harold, established early on immensely successful careers in journalism and publishing. At 25 years old, Ms. Brown was chosen to be editor-in-chief of the British magazine Tatler. She moved to New York to become first, editor-in-chief of Vanity Fair, then editor-in-chief of The New Yorker. The author of four books, Ms. Brown’s most recent, “The Diana Chronicles”, a stunning biography of the Princess of Wales, was an instant bestseller. Sir Harold, knighted by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth in 2004 for services to journalism, spent 14 years as the top editor of England’s prestigious newspaper The Sunday Times. He was president of Random House Book Company for seven years. His own books on the history of America have been followed this year by a memoir acclaimed on both sides of the Atlantic, “My Paper Chase.”

Reservations are accepted exclusively through the Virtuoso network of travel professionals. To locate a Virtuoso advisor, guests can visit or call 866-401-7974. Rates include complimentary copies of both authors’ latest books.

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Contemporary Art & Ultra-Contemporary Technology Converge On The High Seas With Latest Novel Concept From Celebrity Cruises

MIAMI - August 12: Playing off the series of hip, high-tech “firsts” it has introduced in recent months, premium cruise line Celebrity Cruises is debuting the industry’s first self-guided art tours on an iPad®. Earlier this year, Celebrity introduced the first “Celebrity iLounge” – a modern lounge equipped with MacBook® workstations, a retail space featuring Apple products and accessories, and an enrichment center where certified staff present a variety of courses and offer guests tips on Mac and iPod® usage. Celebrity Cruises is itself an iPad pioneer, having become the first cruise line to present a menu and wine list on an iPad when it introduced its engaging “Qsine” specialty restaurant earlier this year.

A new addition to Celebrity’s extensive “Celebrity Life” series of onboard entertainment and enrichment activities, the iPads on each Solstice Class ship house floor plans of every deck on the ship, with select works of art flagged on every deck. A guest simply touches the screen to select the work of art he or she would like to learn more about, and the screen transitions to full details about the piece, including the title of the work, artist’s name, medium used, description and image. In addition to the art tour application, the iPads also present guests with the opportunity to explore digital versions of each Solstice-Class vessel’s in-stateroom art catalogs.

“The response to the Celebrity iLounge and to the iPad menus in Qsine was so positive, we knew our guests would relish yet another opportunity to capitalize on the latest technology in an entertaining, enriching way,” said Celebrity’s Senior VP of Hotel Operations Lisa Lutoff-Perlo. “Celebrity’s ‘Designed for you’ platform is built on our commitment to listen to our guests and offer experiences inspired by them and their sophisticated travel desires.”

With more than 14,000 works of original, contemporary art on its three Solstice Class ships alone, Celebrity Cruises is the holder of one of the world’s largest corporate collections of contemporary art. Throughout the ships, a vast range of mediums is represented, including glass, acrylics, oils, photography, digital prints, video, etchings, sculptures and collages. Approximately 15 percent of the art on each Solstice Class ship is site-specific or commissioned artwork, such as the signature living trees in enormous vases suspended within the Solstice Class ships’ sweeping, airy Grand Foyers.

Celebrity’s new iPad art tours will be available on Celebrity Solstice beginning Aug 15, and on Celebrity Eclipse and Celebrity Equinox beginning August 21. The tours currently are in English, and also will be offered in Spanish by the end of this year. Celebrity will add German and French versions in 2011. For more information, call your travel agent, dial 1-800-437-3111 or visit

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Princess Cruises Passengers to be Among First to View New FOX Television Shows

SANTA CLARITA, CA, Aug 12: In an industry first, Princess Cruises and FOX Television have joined together this summer to premiere two of FOX’s fall primetime shows across the line’s 17-vessel fleet. Throughout August, passengers on Princess ships will be among the first to view the new programs, “Lone Star” and “Raising Hope” – the only primetime network television shows to premiere at sea prior to their network debut in September.

Passengers can view the pilot episodes of both shows at special screenings on the ships’ Movies Under the Stars poolside screens or in the Princess Theater, and can later also watch the shows on their stateroom televisions. Passengers attending the screenings will also receive a FOX tote bag to use throughout their cruise. In addition, two lucky passengers at each screening will have the chance to win a large tote bag full of FOX items.

“These screenings are an exciting first for us, and we’re pleased to partner with FOX to host the first TV ‘screening room’ at sea,” said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises executive vice president. “No cruise line has ever offered the opportunity to see primetime premieres a month before they’re broadcast at home.”

The two shows premiering onboard are:

LONE STAR premieres Monday, Sept. 20 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. The series centers on a charismatic and brilliant schemer – Robert Allen (newcomer James Wolk) – who has meticulously constructed two lives in two different parts of Texas. In Houston, he’s a devoted husband charming his ultra-wealthy in-laws to cement his position in the rich family business he aims to clean out. More than 400 miles away in the suburban west Texas town of Midland, he lives a second life with his sweet, naïve girlfriend, playing the perfect boyfriend while secretly bilking local investors of their savings. As he tries to hold his two lives together, while fending off angry investors and the growing suspicions of those around him, Robert puts it all on the line hoping he can beat the odds, leave the schemes behind and keep two separate relationships afloat.

RAISING HOPE premieres Tuesday, Sept. 21 (9:00-9:30 PM ET/PT) on FOX. The half-hour comedy follows the Chance family as they find themselves adding an unexpected new member into their household. At 23 years old, Jimmy Chance (Lucas Neff) is going nowhere in life. He skims pools for a living, parties every night and still lives at home with his family. Jimmy’s life takes a drastic turn after a chance romantic encounter with a wanted felon. Months later, Jimmy learns his one-night stand is pregnant with their baby, and after she gives birth, he is charged with raising their daughter.

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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Princess Cruises Announces Details for 2011-2012 India & Africa Cruise Season

SANTA CLARITA, CA, Aug 11: Vast desert landscapes, sun-washed beaches, grand bazaars and striking shrines form the backdrop to the exotic worlds of India and Africa. Princess Cruises’ 2011-12 Exotic cruise season will offer passengers a selection of voyages featuring these distinctive destinations, including a sailing along the coast of West Africa. In total, four extended cruises offer the opportunity to visit 38 intriguing ports. Home to a variety of vibrant cultures and the world’s most unique array of fascinating wildlife, African ports delight adventurous passengers. India contrasts with the hustle and bustle of cosmopolitan cities and the more spiritual atmosphere surrounding architectural treasures such as the iconic Taj Majal. Voyages including Africa or India offer the opportunity for a multi-continent adventure, featuring ports in Europe and Asia as well. Ranging from 28 to 46 days, these extensive sailings feature either the intimate ambiance of Ocean Princess or the Aussie-style cruising of Sun Princess, which sails round-trip from Perth.

“Africa and India are filled with the magnificent sights so many of us dream about visiting,” said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises executive vice president. “Open spaces filled with roaming wildlife, colorful civilizations and rich history never fail to capture the imagination in these exotic ports. Princess pioneered cruising in many of these locales, and we continue to offer our expertise to passengers looking for an exciting adventure in these destinations.”

India brings to mind the vibrant world of Bollywood movies and spicy atmosphere. Cosmopolitan Mumbai is a gateway for travel to the Taj Mahal, the famed monument of pearlescent stones that stands as a testament to eternal love. Passengers may also visit the coconut palm-lined beaches in Cochin, a historic port town where colonial architecture display the rich cultures that influenced the city. In Goa, travelers can explore the quaint village of Old Goa, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Princess’ unique West Africa Adventure itinerary offers passengers the opportunity to explore the continent’s intriguing coastline. The Namibian ports Lüderitz and Walvis Bay boast historic German imperial style buildings and are a bird-lover’s paradise, hosting thousands of flamingos, penguins, and ostriches. Mysterious voodoo presentations and grand markets pepper Lomé, Togo with rich African flair. Known for its "teranga" (hospitality), Dakar, Senegal features natural wonders such as Lake Retba, named for its rose-pink colored waters.

In South Africa, Cape Town offers sand, surf, wineries, and stunning views of Table Mountain and the Cape of Good Hope. Port Elizabeth provides opportunities to encounter wildlife with nearby game reserves and national parks set on vast savannas. In Durban, vibrant flowers, sweet smells of spices, and cultural encounters with the fabled Zulu tribe offer a true sense of modern Africa.

Northern Africa features the pyramids and other archeological treasure of Egypt, where visitors can see many of the country’s iconic attraction when ships call at Safaga for Luxor and Karnak. Legendary Casablanca blends African, French, and Middle Eastern influences, particularly in dazzling bazaars filled with rich fabrics and antique ware.

Africa & India cruises:

Mediterranean, India & Asia – For a three-continent adventure, passengers can sail on a 28-day voyage from Rome to Singapore aboard Ocean Princess. The small ship will take cruisers to Sorrento, Athens, and Kusadasi (for Ephesus) before transiting the Suez Canal and continuing on to Sharm El Sheik, Aqaba (for Petra) Safaga (for Luxor/Karnak), Dubai, Muscat, Mumbai, Cochin, and Kuala Lumpur. Ocean Princess departs on Oct 15, 2011.

West Africa Adventure – A unique opportunity to explore the African coast, this 28-day journey onboard the small ship Ocean Princess travels from Cape Town to London (Dover). Travelers can explore a variety of African destinations plus and European ports beginning with a overnight stay in Cape Town. Calls include the Namibian ports of Lüderitz and Walvis Bay, Cotonou (Benin), Lomé (Togo), Tema (Ghana), Dakar (Senegal), Cape Verde Islands, Canary Islands, Casablanca, Seville, Lisbon, and Paris/Normandy before arriving in Dover. The sailing departs on May 6, 2012.

Africa, India & Southeast Asia – The intimate Ocean Princess also offers a 30-day journey from Singapore to Cape Town. Passengers can enjoy the small ship experience on an itinerary to Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Maldives, Mumbai, Muscat, Dubai, Mauritius, Reunion Island, Durban, and East London, plus an overnight call in Cape Town. Travelers have the option to visit the Taj Mahal in India or take a safari to Phinda Private Game Reserve in South Africa. The sailing departs on April 6, 2012 and can be combined with the West Africa Adventure for a 58 day Grand Adventure cruise from Singapore to Dover.

South Africa & Indian Ocean Odyssey – On a 46-day roundtrip sailing from Perth, travelers cover several continents during their voyage. Sun Princess will call at Asian ports such as Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Phuket, then move on to India with visits to Mumbai, Goa, and the Maldives. After crossing the Equator, the ship visits the Seychelles, and the South African ports of Richard’s Bay, Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, and Durban. The ship calls at Reunion Island and Mauritius before returning to Perth. Sun Princess departs on May 3, 2011.

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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Comedy Director Terry Hughes To Put The ‘Ho Ho Ho’ In Holiday Seabourn Sojourn Cruise

MIAMI, Aug 11: The Yachts of Seabourn is delivering a special gift for guests sailing on Seabourn Sojourn’s 2010 holiday cruise. Multiple Emmy award-winning television and film director Terry Hughes will appear as a special guest during the “Christmas & New Year’s Sojourn” voyage departing Dec. 20, 2010, from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., to Los Angeles. During the 16-day cruise, Hughes will share hilarious highlights from his experiences on some of television’s longest-running and most popular comedy shows.

After an award-studded career producing and directing British television and stage comedies in the U.K., Hughes moved to Los Angeles in 1980. He soon became one of the premier producers and directors of many hit television comedy programs, including The Golden Girls, where he garnered six Emmy nominations and two wins, as well as 3rd Rock from the Sun, and episodes of 8 Simple Rules, Friends, Blossom and That 70s Show. In addition to comedy, Hughes has also directed many television musicals, such as Sweeney Todd, for which he received another Emmy, Sunday in the Park with George, Barnum, and Mrs. Santa Claus. He also directed several feature films, including The Butcher’s Wife and Monty Python Live at the Hollywood Bowl.

Seabourn Sojourn’s holiday cruise includes a transit through the Panama Canal, and visits Cartagena, Colombia; Caldera, Costa Rica; Puerto Chiapas, Huatulco, and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico; and San Diego, Calif.

The intimate, all-suite Seabourn Sojourn entered service June 6, 2010, and offers intuitive, gracious service provided by a staff passionate about pleasing guests. The yacht carries 450 guests in 225 spacious suites with sweeping ocean views, 90 percent of which have private verandas. All suites feature separate living areas and bedrooms, writing desks with personalized stationery, iPod and MP3 connections, and spacious granite bathrooms with separate bath and shower and twin sinks.

The two-deck, state-of-the-art Spa at Seabourn features a Spa Villa for hours of pure indulgence and relaxation, as well as a Kneipp Walk, herbal bath facility and an aroma steam bath with salt inhalation. Guests can choose from four dining venues, all without any additional charge, offering gourmet experiences that rival the finest restaurants anywhere. The yacht also features six bars and lounges serving a full range of beverages including fine wines and spirits, with Seabourn’s compliments. For more information, contact a travel agent, call Seabourn at 1-800-929-9391 or visit

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311 To Host Caribbean Cruise

ATLANTA, GA: 311 and Sixthman are excited to announce 311's first ever cruise through the Caribbean next year. 311 will take over the entire Carnival Destiny cruise ship to host an amazing fan experience from March 3-7, 2011, sailing from Miami to Turks & Caicos and back.

Every other year, 311 hosts a special "311 Day" concert on March 11 and fans travel from all over the world to attend. Now that March 2011 is coming up, the band look to celebrate the month and year 3/11 by throwing their best party yet : a 4 night cruise of fun, sun & music.

To show their appreciation for their fans, 311 plan to take photos with each guest as they board the ship, host a Q&A session on the Lido Deck and take song requests for their three on-ship performances. Other performers joining 311 on the cruise include Pepper, DJ Soulman from Phunk Junkeez and more to be announced soon.

"The band and I are really excited about working with Sixthman on this cruise - and we have no doubt that it will be the trip of a lifetime for 311 fans," says Adam Raspler, the band's manager.

April Gardner of Sixthman says of the cruise, "We are thrilled to help 311 create a historic event for their most passionate fans; the band is already embracing the experience more than anyone could hope for, and the team at Sixthman are fired up!"

Read pre-sale details at On August 17, a dedicated 311 Caribbean Cruise website will be launched at And on August 18, the Pre-Sale Sign Up for cabins will ensue at 3PM EDT at that dedicated website.

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Royal Caribbean & The Culinary Institute of America Announce Winner of the
Allure of the Seas Culinary Challenge

MIAMI, Aug. 10: After hosting an eight week-long contest, which culminated with five intense hours in the competition kitchens at The Culinary Institute of America, Royal Caribbean Intl has found the next culinary superstar to lead the kitchen of the signature restaurant onboard Allure of the Seas, the cruise line's newest ship which will make her debut in Dec 2010 and share the title of world's largest and most innovative cruise ship with sister-ship Oasis of the Seas. Maureen "Molly" Brandt of Stillwater, Minn. has landed the job of a lifetime: a one-year paid contract to be the Chef de Cuisine of 150 Central Park onboard Allure of the Seas.

Brandt was one of six chefs - all graduates of The Culinary Institute of America (CIA), the world's premier culinary college - to be a finalist in the Allure of the Seas Culinary Challenge, a contest open exclusively to the CIA's network of 40,000 alumni. The six chefs participated in a two-part final challenge at the college's Hyde Park campus in New York on August 5 & 6, where they were each required to showcase their culinary prowess and creativity by participating in an interview with, as well as preparing a three-course meal for, an esteemed panel of judges from Royal Caribbean and The Culinary Institute of America.

"Partnering with the Culinary Institute and having the ability to tap into their alumni has been an amazing opportunity," said Lisa Bauer, Senior Vice President, Hotel Operations, Royal Caribbean International. "Each of the finalists truly showcased their passion and knowledge in the kitchen and we are extremely excited to have selected Molly as our new Chef de Cuisine for 150 Central Park."

After her entry video was selected as the "fan favorite" in the consumer voting portion of the contest, Brandt went on to impress the judges at the Final Challenge by serving up a menu consisting of Chilled Lobster with fennel, carrots, citrus, caviar and tempura battered lobster mitt; Provencal Lamb Loin with Dijon potato puree, ratatouille, pattypan squash and olive tapenade; and Pistachio Cake with whipped rosewater creme fraiche and carbonated raspberries.

A 2006 alumni of The Culinary Institute of America, Brant was named a Food and Wine best student chef in 2006. While in training she worked at the Food Network as a culinary extern, where she prepared food for a variety of production projects including "Iron Chef America," "Emeril Live," and "Semi-Homemade with Sandra Lee." Immediately following graduation, she spent a year as a teaching assistant in the CIA's Escoffier restaurant, before going on to work in the kitchens at many reputable restaurants in New York, Minnesota and abroad, including the critically acclaimed, Michelin starred Cafe Boulud in New York City. Currently Brandt owns her own private chef and catering company, Cook in the Kitchen in the Twin Cities. She is also the co-founder and villa chef for Flavors of Italia, a company that offers intimate, culinary-focused vacations in Northern Tuscany.

Located in the lush and tropical grounds of the ship's Central Park neighborhood, 150 Central Park will feature decor that will embrace the mellow earth tones, unique textiles and fixtures inspired by nature's four seasons. Inspired by the simple elegance concept of trend-setting restaurants in Chicago, New York and Los Angeles, each detail of 150 Central Park will be dedicated to enhancing the dining ambiance, from the tabletops to the service team uniforms. The restaurant menu and certain design aspects will be developed and determined by the winning chef of the Allure of the Seas Culinary Challenge.

Allure of the Seas shares the title of the world's largest and most revolutionary cruise ship with sister-ship Oasis of the Seas. An architectural marvel at sea, she will span 16 decks, encompass 225,282 gross registered tons, carry 5,400 guests at double occupancy, and feature 2,700 staterooms. Allure of the Seas will tout Royal Caribbean's exclusive neighborhood concept of seven distinct themed areas, which will include Central Park, Boardwalk, the Royal Promenade, the Pool and Sports Zone, Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Center, Entertainment Place and Youth Zone. The ship will alternate a Western Caribbean with an Eastern Caribbean seven-night itinerary from her home port of Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Additional information is available at

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The Real Housewives of New Jersey Travel Through Italy Aboard New Costa Deliziosa

MIAMI, Aug 10: On last night’s episode of Bravo’s popular “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” series, the stars of the show said “ciao” to the Garden State and “buongiorno” to Italy aboard Costa’s newest ship, the Costa Deliziosa. Last February, the famous Italian American housewives were among the first guests to sail on the Italian ship as she set sail on her maiden voyage. Housewives Teresa Giudice, Jacqueline Laurita and Caroline Manzo took a well-deserved getaway from the drama of the series’ second season by cruising with Costa from Venice to Naples. The ladies boarded the ship just two days after it was delivered. Giudice was joined by her husband, daughters, parents and in-laws. Laurita and her husband, who is also Manzo’s brother, brought their two children and Jacqueline’s parents. Manzo was joined by her husband and parents.

“We were thrilled to welcome the housewives of New Jersey and their families as some of the first guests to sail aboard the Costa Deliziosa,” said Maurice Zarmati, president and ceo of Costa North America. “They really made the most of the vacation experience by taking in the sights of Venice while ashore and relaxing onboard with spa treatments, Blackjack games in the casino and dancing in the disco. You could tell they were all very close and family oriented.”

The Costa Deliziosa (92,600-tons; 2,260 double occupancy) is Costa Cruises’ flagship, offering the most exclusive and innovative elements in the fleet designed for Costa’s most discerning clientele. These innovations include the ship’s avant-garde design and the use of premium materials, such as various type of marbles, granite, mother-of-pearl and Murano glass, stucco applied by spatula using the technique known as “spatolato veneziano” and other decorative interior finishes including “parchment scroll” lamé, refined Zebrano wood, Wenge timber and stylish polished and glazed steel. The stunning atrium features fine works of art, including “Sphere” by famous Italian sculptor Arnaldo Pomodoro. In addition, there are a variety of entertainment options onboard including a 4D cinema; a roller skating track; a golf simulator with an outdoor putting green, a Grand Prix race car driving simulator with the same software and technology used by the F1 champion drivers in training; the award-winning 20,000 square-foot Samsara Spa; a PlayStation World area dedicated exclusively to PlayStation3, as well as the PlayStation “on demand” in cabins.

Costa Cruises is Italy’s largest tourism group and Europe’s Number One Cruise Line. For more than 60 years its ships have sailed the seas of the world, offering the best in Italian style, hospitality and cuisine and providing dream vacations filled with fun and relaxation. The company’s 14 fleet members, each with her own distinctive characteristics and unique style, all fly the Italian flag and sail each year to 250 destinations in the Mediterranean, Northern Europe, the Baltic Sea, the Caribbean, Canada/New England, South America, the United Arab Emirates, the Far East and the Indian Ocean. Two more new ships are due to enter service by 2012.

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New Inclusive Taj Mahal Package Added to Crystal's March Cruise
 from Mumbai to Cape Town

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 10: For only $599 per person, Crystal cruise guests can add a fully escorted 3-night, pre-cruise land package to the Taj Mahal prior to the line's March 29 "Safaris and Seashells" voyage from Mumbai to Cape Town. Valued at more than $4,000 per person, the program includes Oberoi Hotel accommodations in New Delhi and the Oberoi Amarvilas Hotel in Agra, spectacular sunrise and sunset visits to the Taj Mahal, meals, transfers, transportation between Delhi, Agra and Mumbai, and a panoramic tour of Mumbai. The optional value-added Taj Mahal pre-cruise tour augments Crystal's 19-day World Cruise segment that begins in Mumbai and visits Marmagoa, India; Republic of Maldives; Mauritius; Reunion; Durban, South Africa and two nights in Cape Town.

"This package offers extraordinary value to a fascinating voyage filled with exotic experiences and fulfilling opportunities ashore and on board," says Bill Smith, senior vice president, sales & marketing. "While the combination of destinations is vibrant, Crystal's Six-Star onboard experience is as stimulating or relaxing as one chooses."

More than a dozen safari options are available in South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Botswana. In keeping with the grandness of the World Cruise, on this 19-day segment dozens of special interest guest lecturers will add insights on India and Africa, including Ambassador Tony Leon, who was a member of Parliament in South Africa recognized by President Nelson Mandela for his dynamism and political analysis. Optional extended land programs in South Africa are also available.

Promotional Two-for-One segment fares start at $13,045, per person, double occupancy, including complimentary air transportation from many North American gateways and up to $1,000 per person 'All Inclusive - As You Wish' shipboard credits. Crystal's Save Now, Save Later promotion offers guests booking any World Cruise segments by September 30 two-for-one fares, plus 20% savings on virtually any 2011 or 2012 cruise. Guests can also earn $400 in shipboard credits for each new-to-Crystal guest they refer who sails on the same voyage with Crystal's new Bonus Share the Experience program.

For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625 or visit

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Costa Favolosa, Costa Cruises’ Fifteenth Ship Set to Debut in Summer 2011

GENOA, August 9: Costa’s newest ship, the Costa Favolosa, took to the sea for the very first time last week at a ceremony held at Fincantieri’s Marghera ship yard in honor of the ship’s technical launch. The Costa Favolosa (114,500 tons; 3,000 dbl occupancy), will set sail on her first cruise in July 2011. She is the fourth of five new ships delivered or set to be delivered between 2009 and 2012 for Costa, which is Europe’s Number One Cruise Line. The total investment of these five new ships is worth 2.4 billion euros. In Spring 2012, the Costa Fascinosa, a sister ship to the Costa Favolosa, will complete Costa’s ambitious fleet expansion program.

“The launch of the Costa Favolosa confirms the strength and leadership of our company,” said Costa Crociere S.p.A. President Gianni Onorato. “Despite the ongoing effects of the economic downturn in 2010 and the uncertain outlook for global tourism, our fleet expansion program has continued uninterrupted. The strength of our brand, which comes with a guarantee of over 60 years of experience, and the quality of our product have proved to be winning assets, highly appreciated by our customers. That is confirmed also by the positive results in terms of bookings achieved this summer and forecasts suggest we will end 2010 with 2.1 million total guests for the group as a whole, which works out to an increase of around 17% compared to last year.”

The construction of each new build involves the labor of around 3,000 people, comprising both Fincantieri’s own employees and those of about 500 contracted suppliers, most of which are Italian firms. In overall terms, the fleet investment program launched back in 2000 by the Costa Crociere S.p.A. Group (comprising Costa Cruises as well as the number one brand for the German market AIDA Cruises and Iberocruceros, which operates mainly for the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking markets) is worth some 9.3 billion euros.

The ceremony for the launch of the Costa Favolosa observed the protocol laid down for such occasions by seafaring tradition. The director of the shipyard invited the Godmother, Beatrice Siri, to cut the ribbon and the bottle of champagne duly broke against the bows of the ship. Betarice Siri, new building and special projects deputy of Costa Cruises, has been directly involved in the construction of the fleet’s last six ships, including the Costa Favolosa, and on March 8, 2010 she received the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic from the President of the Republic, Giorgio Napolitano. After the opening of the valves and the gradual flooding of the slipway where the ship has taken shape over the last few months, the hull of the Costa Favolosa was transferred for the first time to its natural element–-the sea. The launch was preceded by the welding of a coin to the base of what used to be the mainmast in a ceremony traditionally considered to augur well.

As her name suggests (Favola is Italian for “fairy tale”), the Costa Favolosa is intended to interpret the excitement and emotion of people who view the cruise as a magical voyage in a “contemporary enchanted castle,” a perfect combination of fabulous atmosphere and state-of-the-art high-tech fun with a truly amazing range of amenities. The main innovations on board include: six new suites with private verandas and Jacuzzis; a new entertainment area for teenagers (other age groups are sure to enjoy it too), comprising 4D Cinema, PlayStation World, a bar with ice-cream, drinks and popcorn, and a Teens’ Dance Floor; a children’s game room, and a new open-air Aqua Park water playground with its own pirate galleon. Facilities will combine the very best of the Costa product: the Samsara Spa, one of the largest and most exclusive wellness centers ever built on a cruise ship; a large lido extending over two decks, with a sliding glass roof and giant movie screen; a Grand Prix driving simulator; and a golf simulator. A newly designed aft pool area will be particularly large and inviting with 1000 m2 of space dedicated to relaxation and entertainment with the added attraction of new raised whirlpool tubs.

The Costa Favolosa’s position at the cutting-edge of cruise ship building technology also extends to environmental compliance, which has always been a hallmark of Costa Cruises. Like some other fleet members, the Italian Company’s new flagship will be equipped for “cold ironing,” namely a system whereby the ship is plugged into shoreside electrical power, enabling generators to be shut down during stopovers in port.

The Costa Favolosa is set to make her debut on a three-day mini vernissage cruise departing from Venice on July 4, 2011, and calling at Dubrovnik (Croatia) and Koper (Slovenia). This will be followed by her grand inaugural cruise, which leaves Venice on July 7. This 10-day itinerary will visit Israel, Greece and Turkey with stopovers in Bari, Corfu (Greece), Haifa (Israel), Izmir (Turkey) and Dubrovnik (Croatia). Throughout the 2011 summer season the Costa Favolosa will offer 7-day cruises from Venice and Bari to Olympia (Greece), Izmir and Istanbul (Turkey), and Dubrovnik (Croatia). For more information on Costa Cruises or to make reservations, please contact a travel agent, call (800) GO-COSTA or visit

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Celebrity Cruises Introduces More Flexible Group Policy

MIAMI, Aug 6: Premium cruise brand Celebrity Cruises is announcing a new and improved group policy to better align with consumer booking trends. This change provides travel agents with options, depending upon the number of staterooms they need to hold, with one of the key benefits being more time to market and sell their group inventory.

“We want to make it easy for travel agent partners to think of Celebrity as their go-to cruise line when it comes to group space,” said Celebrity’s Senior Vice President of Sales Dondra Ritzenhaler. “We not only aim to design ships and programs that appeal to the tastes of our guests, but also to cater to the desires of our partners, especially travel agents who are vital in creating memorable vacations for their clients.”

Celebrity’s group policy will continue to offer both a no-deposit and deposit program. Celebrity’s no-deposit program will now permit travel agents to hold a maximum of 16 staterooms up to 120 days prior to the sailing date for cruises of up to eight nights and 150 days prior to the sailing date for cruises of nine nights or longer. The deposit program grants travel agents the opportunity to set aside between 17 and 50 staterooms until 120 days before the sailing date for cruises of up to eight nights and 150 days before the sailing date for cruises of nine nights or longer. Deposits are due within 30 days of creating the group space.

Travel agents are welcome to use either group booking program at any time based on need. These changes do not apply to cruisetours or Celebrity Xpedition sailings. The new group policy becomes effective Aug. 10, 2010. The new policy pertains to travel agencies operating in the United States and Canada. For more information on the group policy, travel agents can visit or call 1-800-963-0311. For more information, call your travel agent, dial 1-800-437-3111 or visit

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Windstar Cruises Unveils Its 2011/2012 Sailing Atlas Detailing
 175 Sailings & 40 Itineraries

SEATTLE, Aug. 6: Windstar Cruises, which operates a three-ship fleet of luxury yachts that explore hidden harbors and secluded coves of the world's most sought-after destinations, has published its 2011/2012 Sailing Atlas, with artwork by acclaimed artist Michael Crampton, showcasing a new collection of extraordinary voyages to enchanting destinations and a captivating Signature Collection Host Series. The 112-page 2011/2012 Sailing Atlas presents new sailings in the Caribbean, Costa Rica, Europe, The Baltic, Holy Lands, Greek Isles and Panama Canal at exceptional values for guests to discover along with day-by-day itineraries by region, ship deck plans and Windstar cruise information.

New 2011/2012 Voyages

Baltic Voyages: Architectural wonders, monuments, picturesque villages and dramatic landscapes are some of the sites on Baltic cruises:

-- 7-day sailing on Wind Spirit from Le Havre, France to Oslo, Norway departs July 9, 2011, and visits Dieppe, France; Bruges (Ostend), Belgium; Amsterdam, Netherlands (overnight); and Kristiansand, Norway.
-- 7-day sailing on Wind Spirit from Oslo, Norway to Stockholm, Sweden departs July 16, 2011, and visits Gothenburg, Sweden; Arhus, Denmark; Copenhagen, Denmark; Warnemunde, Germany; and Visby, Sweden.
-- 7-day sailing on Wind Spirit Stockholm, Sweden roundtrip departs July 23, 2011, and visits Helsinki, Finland; Tallinn, Estonia; and St. Petersburg, Russia (overnight).
-- 7-day sailing on Wind Spirit from Stockholm, Sweden to Oslo, Norway departs July 30, 2011, and visits Visby, Sweden; Warnemunde, Germany; Copenhagen, Denmark; Arhus, Denmark; and Gothenburg, Sweden.
-- 7-day sailing on Wind Spirit from Oslo, Norway to Le Havre, France departs Aug 6, 2011, and visits Kristiansand, Norway; Amsterdam, Netherlands (overnight); Bruges (Ostend), Belgium; and Dieppe, France.

Holy Land Voyages: Rich with history, ancient ruins, museums and archeological sites, the Holy Land sailings also feature optional excursions to Cairo and pre- and post-cruise programs to Jerusalem.

-- 10-day sailing on Wind Star from Athens, Greece to Ashdod, Israel departs Oct 15, 2011, and visits Santorini, Greece; Rhodes, Greece; Alanya, Turkey; Limassol, Cyprus; and Port Said, Egypt
-- 11-day sailing on Wind Star from Ashdod, Israel to Athens, Greece departs Oct 25, 2011, and visits Haifa, Israel; Port Said, Egypt (overnight); Limassol, Cyprus; Marmaris, Turkey; Patmos, Greece; and Idra, Greece.

European Voyages: Highlight of European sailings include World War II sites, charming towns, castles, fishing villages and offer an optional post tour to Paris.

-- 7-day sailing on Wind Spirit from Lisbon, Portugal to Le Havre, France departs July 2, 2011, and visits Porto, Portugal; Brest, France; Roscoff, France; and Cherbourg, France.
-- 7-day sailing on Wind Spirit from Le Havre, France to Lisbon, Portugal departs Aug 13, 2011, and visits Cherbourg, France; Roscoff, France; Brest, France; and Porto, Portugal.

Greek Isles Voyages on Wind Surf: Experience the mythical beauty, rich history, culture, limestone cliffs, whitewashed villages and sandy beaches of Greece on these cruises:

-- 7-day sailing on Wind Surf from Athens, Greece to Istanbul, Turkey departs July 16, Sept 24, and Oct 8, 2011, and visits Mykonos, Greece; Santorini, Greece; Rhodes, Greece; Bodrum, Turkey; and Kusadasi, Turkey.
-- 7-day sailing on Wind Surf from Istanbul, Turkey to Athens, Greece departs July 23, Oct 1, and Oct 15, 2011, visits Kusadasi, Turkey; Rhodes, Greece; Bodrum, Turkey; Santorini, Greece; and Mykonos, Greece.

Costa Rica Voyages: New Costa Rica itineraries offer lush jungles, pristine beaches, abundant wildlife and a Panama Canal Transit.

-- 7-day sailings on Wind Star from Puerto Caldera, Costa Rica to Colon, Panama depart Dec 31, 2011 & Feb 4, 2012, and visit Bahia Drake, Costa Rica; Golfito, Costa Rica; Isla de Cobia, Panama; Panama Canal Transit; and San Blas Islands, Panama.
-- 7-day sailings on Wind Star from Colon, Panama to Puerto Caldera, Costa Rica depart Jan 7 and Feb 11, 2012, and visit San Blas Islands, Panama; Panama Canal Transit; Isla de Cobia, Panama; Golfito, Costa Rica; Bahia Drake, Costa Rica.

Caribbean Voyages: Vibrant ports, white-sand beaches and azure waters are some of the elements that comprise these cruises.

-- 7-day sailings on Wind Surf from Barbados to St. Martin depart Jan 7, Feb 11, March 24, 2012, and visit Mayreau, The Grenadines; Pigeon Island, St. Lucia; Le Marin, Martinique; Portsmouth, Dominica; and St. Barts, F.W.I.
-- 7-day sailings on Wind Surf from St. Martin to Barbados depart Jan 14 and Feb 18, 2012, and visit Virgin Gorda, B.V.I.; Iles de Saints, F.W.I.; Pigeon Island, St. Lucia; Bequia, The Grenadines; and Mayreau, The Grenadines.

Transatlantic Voyage: -- 13-day sailing on Wind Spirit from Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain to St. Martin, F.W.I. departs Nov 20, 2011.

Windstar's popular Signature Collection Host Series returns offering guests a unique opportunity to travel with luminaries in the world of winemaking, culinary arts, photography, gardening and wealth management. Guests can taste and learn about wines from top winemakers Daniel Baron of Silver Oak Cellars; Chris Figgins of Leonetti Cellar; Tor and Susan Kenward of Tor Kenward Family Wines; Bob Iantosca of Gloria Ferrer and Julia Iantosca of Lasseter Family Winery; as well as David Gianulias and Todd Rustman of Levendi Winery. Chef Fabio Viviani of Firenze Osteria and fan favorite of "Top Chef" season five will delight food connoisseurs with his culinary arts. Guests will discover the art of photography with celebrity and travel photographer John Russo. Garden designer Anthea Guthrie will share her passion for gardening and design tips. And, Todd Rustman will discuss the principles of wealth management.

Windstar Cruises is currently implementing its latest phase of its Degrees of Difference initiative featuring added amenities and enhancements to the fleet, in the areas of dining, accommodations, entertainment, spa, fitness and shore excursions. This new initiative takes the ships to a new degree of excellence and delivers an experience that continues to raise the bar. To order Windstar's 2011/2012 Sailing Atlas, contact a travel professional, call Windstar Cruises at 1-800-258-7245 or visit

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Cruise West Announces a New 2011 Itinerary - Wild Alaska Seafari

SEATTLE, WA, Aug 6: Cruise West, a global leader in small-ship explorations, has announced a new 5-night itinerary, Wild Alaska Seafari, dedicated to showcasing Alaska’s wildlife like never before.

“We are continually looking for new and innovative ways to explore this beautiful land,” shared Dick West, Cruise West’s Chairman and Managing Director. “Unlike the big ships, our captains have always had the liberty to take small ‘detours’ to ensure that guests are able to experience wildlife the way it should be enjoyed – up-close and personal. We have extended that philosophy into an adventure of a lifetime with Wild Alaska Seafari.”

Since its inception, nearly 64 years ago, Cruise West has delivered an authentic and genuine exploration experience. Company founder, Chuck West, practically invented Alaska tourism, leading him to be called “Mr. Alaska” by his contemporaries. His dream of taking adventurous travelers up-close to Alaska took root in his days as a bush pilot. After a period of offering sightseeing and flightseeing tours, he was soon showing his guests Alaska’s interior and pristine waterways on both land tours and the first small-ship cruises. Today, his legacy of adventure and hospitality lives on in this second generation, family-owned company, operated by his son, Dick West.

“Alaska is core to our business and to our company culture,” commented Dietmar Wertanzl, Cruise West’s President and CEO. “It is often a guests’ first experience with Cruise West and it provides a perfect backdrop to showcase the benefits of small-ship cruising. Although I have sailed in Alaska several times, I am excited about experiencing this new itinerary alongside our guests.”

The new Wild Alaska Seafari was designed to provide guests with the experience closest to a true explorer. While the major ports and places have been identified, the sequence and timing will be determined by Mother Nature and the captain of the Spirit of Alaska. The captain will have the authority to adapt the timing to ensure that guests experience each sight at its most spectacular. On select journeys, there will be professional photographers onboard, for those guests who would like guidance on how to capture the “ultimate shots” of these magical locations.

· Programming has been designed for the more active traveler, so inflatable raft excursions have been planned during the day and evening, to maximize the adventure experience.
· Routes will be carefully timed to ensure that the ships’ location is designed for the best possible light, a photographer’s dream.
· Guests will visit Pelican, a town that is only accessible by ship. This small fishing village is a quiet boardwalk experience with no roads.
· Guests will enjoy a journey to the West Chichagof-Yakobi Wilderness, a pristine wonderland.
· The Icy Strait represents more than 13 unique shore opportunities along the more than 100 miles of coastline. Each cruise experience will differ depending on the whims of the wildlife and the captain’s instincts for the best guest experience.
· Overnight anchorages will highlight ‘Quiet Places of Solitude’ and allow guests to reflect onboard, away from the glitz and glamour of the city.
· Pre-night package includes a presentation by local photographers and an early morning photo shoot at stunning Eagle Beach.

Wild Alaska Seafari can be combined with an optional 5-night land tour within Denali National Park and Preserve, home to Mount McKinley, North America’s largest mountain. The Denali experience provides guests with a plethora of choices to customize their experience, including a visit to the home and kennel of Mary Shields, the first woman to run the Iditarod, a Tundra Wilderness Tour of spectacular landscapes, and optional excursions like rafting or flightseeing.

In addition, Cruise West will continue to offer the following itineraries in 2011. For each itinerary, Cruise West provides an all-inclusive experience that includes a shore excursion in every port.

· Alaska’s Inside Passage – 7 nights, roundtrip from Juneau
· Gold Rush Inside Passage – 10 or 11 night adventures sailing from Seattle to Juneau (or reverse)
· Glacier Bay Highlights- 4 nights, roundtrip from Juneau
· Glaciers of Prince William Sound – 4 nights, roundtrip from Anchorage

Across all of their Alaska itineraries, guests may choose from multiple departure dates. The Wild Alaska Seafari dates include June 1, 6, 11, 16, 21, 26, 2011, July 1, 6, 11, 16, 21, 26, 31, 2011, and Aug 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 2011. Guests can save $700 per person by paying in full by Sept 24, 2010. For further details, visit, call 800-296-8307, or contact a travel professional.

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Holland America Line Introduces Intimate Approach to Shipboard Entertainment

SEATTLE, Aug. 5: With the recent launch of the 2,106-guest ms Nieuw Amsterdam, Holland America Line is showcasing its new approach to shipboard entertainment, opting to bring more intimacy to evening shows. Exemplifying this new direction is the singing group Cantare, a quartet of male performers with a pop music repertoire covering several eras.

"With this new approach we've focused on getting top-notch performers, and you'll see more faces from Broadway, 'American Idol' and other well-known performance outlets gracing our stage," said Richard D. Meadows, CTC, executive vice president, marketing, sales and guest programs. "We're looking to share meaningful entertainment experiences with our guests through the quality of the music and performances, as well as deliver increasingly innovative and enriching options."

Several production shows will debut aboard Nieuw Amsterdam, including "N.Y.C.," a musical tour of the Big Apple; "Ladies Night," a fun and fabulous all-female revue; "Live from the Avalon Ballroom," an extravaganza of ballroom dance and music; "Garage Band," a '60s and '70s musical set in an automobile service center, and "It Takes Two," a revue of famous duets and duos. Following the shows' run aboard Nieuw Amsterdam they will expand across the fleet by the end of 2010.

Throughout the cruising year, Holland America Line's more than 200 entertainers perform more than 90 shows on the 15 ships in the fleet. In addition to the resident performers, guests also can enjoy a variety of entertainment including comedians, musicians and magicians.

On several ships, performances take place in the new Showroom at Sea, a modern-day take on the classic nightclub that features state-of-the-art technology and a different show and themed atmosphere nightly. The Showroom at Sea is aboard Nieuw Amsterdam, as well as ms Veendam, ms Rotterdam, ms Statendam and ms Ryndam as part of the $525 million Signature of Excellence enhancement program.

The Showroom at Sea features a completely redesigned main stage that introduces a new seating layout and an enlarged dance floor. A new sound system, enhanced lighting and high-tech video projections transport guests into diverse environments as scenery and decor leap off the stage and into the audience.

Holland America Line's creative team has earned more Tony, Emmy, Grammy and Oscar nominations than any other in the cruise industry. Hugh Durrant -- a costume, set and theatrical designer -- has won Emmy awards for his work with Cher and others, and fashion icon Bob Mackie, who created many of Holland America Line's costumes, has a long history of award-winning designs for celebrities.

Built at Fincantieri's Marghera yard near Venice, Italy, Nieuw Amsterdam was named by Her Royal Highness Princess Maxima of the Netherlands July 4, 2010. After a series of 12-day Mediterranean sailings, the ship embarks on a fall trans-Atlantic crossing to the Caribbean to sail seven-day eastern and western itineraries from November 2010 through March 2011.

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

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Global Luminaries Program Offers Fascinating Travel Companions
Lindblad Expeditions

NEW YORK, N.Y. August 2010 – Lindblad Expeditions has announced their Global Luminaries program for 2010/2011. Renowned for their staff’s expertise in the regions they explore, Global Luminaries will add an extra layer of interest and insight to their expeditions with special guests drawn from the top tiers of world affairs, broadcast journalism, and exploration and research. The Global Luminaries title refers to what these remarkable individuals contribute to the expedition community at large - a relevant global perspective. The unique program is available exclusively aboard National Geographic Explorer and affords guests the opportunity to travel and explore with world-class personalities, as fellow guests, in the intimate and conversational environment of an expedition - and not just in the context of a presentation or talk from the podium.

Some of the upcoming luminaries who will be traveling this season include (a complete list can be found at

World Affairs:
Gro Brundtland: Former Prime Minister of Norway. UN Special Envoy on Climate Change.
· The Baltics, August 28, 2011 & Antarctica, Nov 26, 2011

Mary Robinson: First woman President of Ireland. Formerly the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights.
· British & Irish Isles, May 16, 2011

Mikhail Gorbachev: Former President of the Soviet Union, Nobel Peace Laureate, Cold War reformer and 20th-century visionary. President Gorbachev will meet with Lindblad guests in St. Petersburg.
· The Baltics – Aug. 28 & Sept. 5, 2011

Lech Walesa: From electrician to Labor Leader to Nobel Prize winner to the elected President of Poland, he is fascinating and will visit with us in Gdarisk.
· The Baltics – Aug. 28 & Sept. 5, 2011

Elizabeth Kolbert: Journalist, Staff Writer for The New Yorker and Author of Field Notes from a Catastrophe: Man, Nature and Climate Change.
· Ice Bears – June 23, 2011

Robert Siegel: Senior host of NPR’s award-winning All Things Considered he has reported from all over Western and Eastern Europe.
· European Odyssey, Sept. 19, 2011

John Evans: Member of an historic 10-member expedition in 1966, sponsored in part by the National Geographic Society, which became the first to summit the highest point in Antarctica.
· Antarctica – Nov. 27, 2010

Peter Hillary: Born into mountaineering royalty. Summited the highest mountain on each of the seven continents, and established a new overland route to the South Pole.
· Antarctica, Dec. 7, 17 & 27, 2010

Tim Severin: Explorer, Historian, Author and Filmmaker; has literally travelled the legendary routes of myth and established maritime and exploration historic facts.
· Antarctica, South Georgia & the Falklands, Feb. 15, 2011

For reservations contact your travel agent or for additional information on Lindblad Expeditions’ voyages to some of the most beautiful and fascinating places on earth visit or call 1-800-EXPEDITION.

About Lindblad Expeditions: Lindblad Expeditions is an expedition travel company that offers voyages in the Galápagos, Antarctica, Baja California, Alaska, Costa Rica, Panama, Egypt, the Arctic and beyond. The company works in alliance with the National Geographic Society to inspire travelers to explore and care about the planet. As pioneers of global exploration, the organizations work in tandem to produce innovative marine expedition programs and to promote conservation and sustainable tourism around the world.

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Windstar Cruises Announces 2-For-1 Fares on Select
Costa Rica & Panama Canal Voyages

SEATTLE, Aug. 4: 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, offers great value with 2-for-1 fares on select winter Costa Rica and Panama Canal voyages on new bookings made now through Aug 14, 2010.

Exotic Costa Rica Sailings on 148-guest Wind Star
Seven-day sailings on Wind Star feature Costa Rica's lush jungles, pristine beaches and abundant wildlife. Cruises depart from Puerto Caldera and visit San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua as well as a variety of ports in Costa Rica: Playas del Coco, Quepos, Bahia Drake, Curu and Tortuga Island. The selected departures offering special 2-for-1 fares include:

-- Jan 8, 2011 Sailing: 2-for-1 sale fare from $1,575 per person, double occupancy;
-- Jan 15, 2011 Sailing: 2-for-1 sale fare from $1,675 per person, double occupancy;
-- Feb 5; Feb 12; Feb 19; March 5; March 12; March 19; and March 26, 2011 Sailings: 2-for-1 sale fare from $1,775 per person, double occupancy.

Wind Star offers a 7-day holiday cruise roundtrip from Puerto Caldera departing Dec 19, 2010. The ship is decorated with beautiful holiday decorations including trees, wreathes, garlands and lights. A holiday menu is specially prepared by the ship's executive chef featuring roasted turkey and traditional accompaniments in addition to other culinary delights. Special sale fares from $1,699 per person, double occupancy

Wind Star's New Year's 7-day sailing departs Dec 26, 2010, from Puerto Caldera. During the sailing, a festive New Year's Eve party complete with party favors, live music, official countdown by the captain and champagne toast is conducted. Special sale fares from $1,699 per person, double occupancy.

Wind Star's Panama Canal Voyage
The 15-day Panama Canal voyage on Wind Star departs St. Martin on December 4, 2010, and cruises to Puerto Caldera featuring a transit of the legendary Panama Canal. Ports of call include: St. Barts, F.W.I.; Tortola, B.V.I.; Virgin Gorda, B.V.I.; Willemstad, Curacao; Oranjestad, Aruba; Isla De Coiba, Panama; Quepos, Costa Rica; and Tortuga Island, Costa Rica. Special 2-for-1 fares from $3,575 per person, double occupancy.

Costa Rica & Panama Canal Shore Excursions
To complement these sailings, Windstar's Shore Excursion program features 28 adventures encompassing sea explorations, snorkeling, cultural and historical experiences, as well as walking and hiking journeys that can be purchased online at

New Shore Excursions for Costa Rica and Panama Canal Sailings include:

-- Whale Watching Excursion in Bahia Drake, Costa Rica: Cruise with a naturalist on a whale watching vessel in Drake Bay on the Osa Peninsula where whales, dolphins, sea turtles swim in clear blue tropical waters;
-- Palo Verde by Boat in Playa del Coco, Costa Rica: Cruise on a river boat through one of Costa Rica's most celebrated national parks to view wildlife such as peccaries, armadillos, monkeys, jaguarondis and crocodiles;
-- Brimstone Fortress and Colonial Plantation in Basseterre, St. Kitts: Comprehensive exploration of St. Kitts highlighting island architecture, squares, monuments, Brimstone Hill Fortress and Colonial
Plantation House;
-- Savegre River Float Adventure in Quepos, Costa Rica: Enjoy landscapes, scenery and wildlife during a river float on the Rio Savegre, one of Central America's most beautiful rivers;
-- The Best of Colonial Granada in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua: Enjoy a colorful horse drawn carriage ride through 500 years of history in colonial Granada before a relaxing boat excursion on Lake Nicaragua and visit to the Convent of San Francisco to view ancient stone idols and pre-Columbian sculptures;
-- Mighty Masaya Volcano in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua: Guided tour of the Masaya Volcano where plumes of steam billow endlessly from fumaroles;
-- Eco-Lodge Sojourn in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua: Experience an authentic experience with nature during a day visit to Morgan's Rock Hacienda & Eco-Lodge which includes a refreshing swim at a private beach;
-- Royal Dolphin Swim in Roadtown, Tortola: Swim with a dolphin in a natural lagoon setting at Prospect Reef Resort.

Windstar's special 2-for-1 Costa Rica and Panama Canal fares are not combinable with any other promotions/programs. 2-for-1 fares are per person, double occupancy, based on a 50 percent discount off brochure fares as published in the 2010/2011Windstar Cruises Sailing Atlas and the 2011/2012 Windstar Cruises Sailing Atlas. Rates shown are for Category B staterooms on Wind Star. Rates shown on already reflect 2-for-1 savings. Offer is combinable with one shipboard credit, upgrade or package offer. Taxes additional. Offer is capacity controlled and may be withdrawn or modified at the discretion of Windstar. Offer is valid on new bookings made now through Aug 14, 2010. For more information including brochures, rates and itineraries contact a professional travel agent or call Windstar at 1-800-258-7245. Visit Windstar Cruises online at

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Celebrity Cruises Offers Onboard Credit On Select Caribbean Sailings

MIAMI, August 2: Celebrity Cruises is offering a wide range of Caribbean sailings this winter, and a new booking promotion aims to sweeten the deal. Now through Aug. 14, 2010, guests who book select Caribbean cruises in certain staterooms can receive up to a $200 onboard credit per stateroom. The promotion applies to Caribbean cruises of seven nights or longer sailing between Oct 2010 and April 2011, including all three of Celebrity’s Solstice-class ships. Guests who book veranda staterooms, Concierge Class staterooms, AquaClass staterooms (available only on Solstice-class ships), and suites now through Aug. 14, 2010, can receive an onboard credit in the amount of $100 per veranda stateroom, $150 per Concierge Class stateroom, $150 per AquaClass stateroom (available only on Solstice-class ships), and $200 per suite.

Celebrity’s Caribbean destinations include St. Johns, Antigua; Oranjestad, Aruba; St. George’s, Grenada; Willemstad, Curacao; Scarborough, Tobago and San Juan, Puerto Rico. Guests can apply their onboard credit toward reservations at Celebrity Cruises’ specialty restaurants, such as Murano, which serves a blend of classic and modern Continental cuisine. Cruisers can also spend their onboard credit on the expanded selections of beverage packages, spa treatments and shore excursions. Onboard credit is quoted in US Dollars, is not redeemable for cash, and will expire at 10 pm on the last night of the cruise. Celebrity Cruises reserves the right to impose a fuel supplement of up to $10 per person per day. Cruisers are invited to call their travel agent, visit the Celebrity web site at, or call 1-800-437-3111 to learn more.

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New Crystal Adventures Offer New Perspectives

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 2: This fall, Crystal guests can see what backstage life is like at the Monte Carlo Ballet, how the ponies live at St-Tropez's Polo Club, view Mexico's Sierra Madre mountains from a private plane and Copper Canyon by privately chartered rail, among other "private access" experiences. The ultra-luxury line is offering nearly 100 brand new Crystal Adventures with its fall itineraries, offering travelers distinctly new perspectives on the destinations.

"Crystal's well traveled guests continually seek fresh and exclusive ways to see destinations," says John Stoll, vice president, land and port operations. "We design our Crystal Adventures to appeal to a broad range of interests and offer travelers more choices."

On 20 distinctive voyages this fall, Crystal's award-winning ships explore the Mediterranean, Black Sea, Holy Land, Canary Islands, British Isles, New England/Canada, Panama Canal and the Mexican Riviera. Many of the latest highlights ashore include VIP access and unique points of view:

Exclusive Access
-- Private visit to Venice's Doges Palace before it opens to the public for the day
-- Guided behind-the-scenes tour of the Monte Carlo Ballet, including the costume department
-- Behind-the-scenes visit to the Polo Club St-Tropez, exploring the stables and luxury clubhouse, and visit with the polo ponies.

New Points of View
-- Explore Reykjavik's hot springs, lava fields, trails and mud banks
-- In a private plane, soar over the Sierra Madre mountain range to Guadalajara to experience its musical, spiritual and artistic culture (from Puerto Vallarta)
-- Bay of Fundy discovery with guidance from a resident marine biologist highlighting the indigenous wildlife (St. John, New Brunswick)
-- Mountain biking adventure featuring spectacular island views on Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Spain.

With promotional, Two-for-One cruise fares, Crystal's fall fare include generous 'All Inclusive - As You Wish' shipboard spending credits ($500-$1,000 per person, depending on itinerary). For many voyages, complimentary air transportation is included - Business Class Air for Penthouse guests - as well as family incentives and discounted verandah staterooms and Penthouses. For more information, Crystal reservations, and complete promotional details, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit

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HRH, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall Visits Cunard’s Queen Victoria in Liverpool

August 2: History was made last week when Her Royal Highness, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall graced the decks of Cunard Line’s Queen Victoria as the ship made her maiden call in Liverpool. The day marked The Duchess’ second visit to the ship - her first was for the ship’s naming ceremony in December 2007 when she christened the liner. Not only did The Duchess reacquaint herself with “her” ship and crew, but she also helped Cunard commemorate the 170th anniversary of the company’s first ship, the Britannia, which set sail from Liverpool in July 1840.

“Cunard is honored that Her Royal Highness named this fine ship, and delighted that she continues to display such an interest both in the ship and in the crew. The Duchess will always be warmly welcomed on board,” said Peter Shanks, president of Cunard Line.

In January 2011, Queen Victoria will begin her first Americas season, traversing the Panama Canal on more than one voyage and making two rare roundtrip sailings from Los Angeles to Hawaii, plus debuting her maiden Mexico Getaway voyage. Prior to embarking on her maiden Americas season, Queen Victoria will meet Queen Mary 2 and Queen Elizabeth in New York Harbor for another spectacular Cunard Royal Rendezvous on 13 January 2011, exactly three years to the day that she met Queen Mary 2 and QE2 in New York for the first meeting of the three Queens. For more information, visit

For more information about Queen Victoria or to book a voyage, consult your travel professional, call toll-free 1-800-7-CUNARD, or go to More about the royal visit can be found on Cunard's blog:

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Carnival Launches New Superstar Live Karaoke

MIAMI, August 2: With the band warmed up, amps cranked, spotlight set, and the adoring crowd ready to explode, Carnival guests will take the stage, grab the mic and live out their music-star daydreams on the open seas. Introducing Superstar Live Karaoke, Carnival Cruise Lines’ newest entertainment feature puts guests into the act, fronting a live band and performing their favorite songs to a packed house.

Superstar Live Karaoke combines two popular forms of entertainment – live music by talented musicians and karaoke by Carnival’s singing sailors – and cranks it up. It is fun for all when aspiring singers or fun-seekers have their moment in the spotlight while a few hundred of their friends, family and fellow guests cheer them on and sing along. Following a high-energy introduction, the would-be music legend hits the stage to belt out a favorite tune accompanied by talented musicians playing the electric guitar, bass, drums and keyboards, as well as versatile backup singers to provide sweet harmonies.

“We’re thrilled to bring this new entertainment option to the Carnival vacation experience. Superstar Live Karaoke takes Carnival’s participatory fun to a new level with our guests unleashing their vocal talents and fulfilling their musical fantasies while fronting a great live band,” said Gerry Cahill, Carnival’s president and CEO.

Those interested in living their dream as a super star--for one night, at least--simply sign up with the on-site host in the designated Superstar Live Karaoke lounge on board. Participation is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Guests can channel their inner rock star, pop idol, Motown legend and country crooner, selecting from a list of more than 100 song titles that span a wide variety of musical styles and genres from artists including ABBA to Zac Brown Band and everything in between.

For those about to rock, there are plenty of classic songs from AC/DC, The Beatles, Pat Benatar, Bon Jovi, Joan Jett and others, as well as contemporary hits by artists such as The Black Eyed Peas, Kelly Clarkson, Lady Gaga and Maroon 5. Guests can add a twang with current and classic country songs made famous by Garth Brooks, Patsy Cline, Taylor Swift, Rascal Flatts, Shania Twain, and others, or pay their respects to soul, rap and R&B greats by performing songs by Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson, Wilson Pickett and Sir Mix-A-Lot, among many others.

The program, which recently debuted aboard Carnival Conquest and Carnival Valor, premieres on the Carnival Pride this week. Superstar Live Karaoke will be introduced to the line’s 12 Fun Ships that operate itineraries of seven days or longer by year’s end.

Carnival is the largest and most popular cruise line in the world, with 22 “Fun Ships” operating voyages ranging from three to 16 days in length to The Bahamas, Caribbean, Mexican Riviera, Alaska, Hawaii, Canada, New England, Europe, and Bermuda. The line currently has two new 130,000-ton ships on order – Carnival Magic, set to debut from Europe May 1, 2011, and Carnival Breeze, scheduled to enter service in spring 2012. For additional information and reservations on the “Fun Ship” vacation experience, contact any travel agent, call 1-800-CARNIVAL or visit

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