Wednesday, 21 May 2008

Costa Cruise Line to sceen Euro 2008 matches

Football lovers will not miss out this summer as Costa promises all matches in the European Championships will be screened live across the whole fleet.
All 12 ships in the fleet will show games beamed live from Austria and Switzerland between 7th June and 29th June.

The 3,780-passenger Costa Serena and Costa Concordia – will install an 18m² screen on the central lido decks to ensure that everyone who wishes will have a good view.

Fans will be able to relax in an exclusive arena with the capacity to seat 1000's or ajourn to a more traditional football viewing environment, the Bar Sport which is a feature of both ships

Tuesday, 20 May 2008

River cruising set for unparalleled growth

Graham Clubb the UK Chairman of Viking River Cruises has announced the companies intention to increase the size of their fleet from 21 to 50 vessels within the next five years.

He also said that Trade sales saw an 80% rise in 2007 and that Viking River Cruises intend to introduce ‘no-fly’ cruises, using Eurostar from the UK, on the rivers Seine, Rhone and Rhine.
Additional flights from more regional airports are also being introduced.

Stuart Perl, managing director of Peter Deilmann River and Ocean Cruising, said: “We are looking at increasing the size of the fleet specifically because of the increase in demand from the UK market.”

9 river cruise vessels are currently operating alongside their ocean-going cruise ship.

The number of passengers from the UK who took a river cruise last in 2007 was around 118,000, with Viking cruises prices averaging about £2,200 per person cruise-only rates with Peter Deilmann came in at around£1,400 pp.

Revenues being much higher than the £1,000 average cost of a cruise on Ocean Village, or £1,500 with P&O Cruises.

Thursday, 15 May 2008

Spirit of Adventure marks 200th anniversay of Darwins birth

The Spirit of Adventure will cruise around Central America and up the coast of South America in 2009, to mark the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin's birth.

352-passengers will have the opportunity to visit the Galapagos Islands, Costa Rica and experience the amazing Amazon Rainforest next year.

The worlds most famous Naturalist, who was born 200 years ago explored Antarctica, the High Andes and Galapagos, the ship will follow the route he took as he undertook the research which led him to formulate his now famous theory of evolution.

The cruise will Depart 21st February 2009 from Chile, then northwards to Peru and Ecuador where passengers will join the MV Galapagos Explorer II for a 3 day mini cruise to visit the Charles Darwin Research Centre.

offer the 18 night cruise at prices which start at only £4,354 pp for this trip of a lifetime.

Friday, 9 May 2008

Barrhead Travel Cruise Day

Barrhead Travel's Cruise day Saturday the 3rd of May was their most successful ever since their move to the superstore in Oswald Street, Glasgow. 250 people were invited in advance and many, many more came along on the day

Elaine Robb and Luke Smith from CCS set up a Scelectrix that was a great success with kids of all ages but and many other distractions were not enough to distract the visitors from their purpose of booking their next years cruise.
A lot of hard work went in to the preparation for this from the Cruise Direct and Barrhead travel team who throughout the day provided excellent customer service, looking after the refreshments and helping the clients at every turn. All had the opportunity to talk to a consultant and if they wished an appointment one of the cruise line staff.

The day really was a great success for all concerned.

Independence of the seas, a personal recomendation

The Independence of the Seas is the third of the Freedom Class Ships and it is wonderful. It has something for everyone, you will not be disappointed.
From an Inside stateroom to the Suites there are new nicely decorated spacious cabins.
Do not miss the shows as they are fantastic if you miss one then you can catch up on the television in your stateroom.
The kids facilities are really good and they have their own section to play in depending on their age. The food is wonderful, you can eat in the main dining room at 6.30 or 8.30 or if you choose, eat in the Windjammer or one of the specialty restaurants. You will find a wide range of food in all of these restaurants so you will not be limited for choice. All in all a fantastic experience.

Anne - cruise consultant CruiseDirect

Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Azamara Journey Caribbean and Panama Canal cruises

Azamara Cruises have detailed their winter 2009-2010 programme of Caribbean and Panama Canal cruises.

Azamara Journey, the 694 passenger cruise liner, underwent a $19 million restoration before launching in 2007, it will sail between December 2009 and mid April 2010 and will visit 23 ports in 15 countries.

Part of the Royal Caribbean cruises family the small luxury ship brand will make first time calls at Castries, St. Lucia; Willemstad. Curacao; San Diago and California.

The ship will also anchor off of the seven-mile island of Bequia in The Grenadines, which is a favoured port of call for small cruise ship and yachts because of its attractions and unspoiled atmosphere.

San Diago rather than Los Angeles will be the turnaround port for each of the two 16-night Panama Canal sailings; one of the ships will be departing westbound from Miami on December 18, 2009 and the other will be departing eastbound to Miami on January 3, 2010.

During both of the Panama Canal sailings, Azamara Journey will call at Port Antonio, Jamaica; Cartagena, Colombia; Puntarenas, Costa Rica; San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua; Willemstad, Curacao; and Acapulco, Cabo San Lucas and Huatulco, Mexico.

A new 10-night Easter voyage will be sailing from Miami 1, 2010 and will call a St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands; Marigot, St. Martin; Roseau, Dominica; Basseterre, St. Kitts, and Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands.

A rotation of the three different 12-night Caribbean itineraries from Miami January to March 2010 will feature a balance between beach, shopping and nature intensive ports. These will include Bequia; Castries; Roseau, Dominica; St. Croix, US Virgin Islands; Falmouth, Antigua; Fort de France, Martinique; Gustavia, St. Barts; Pointe-a-Pitre, Guadeloupe; plus others.

Shore tours include visiting the Monteverde Cloud Forest in Costa Rica from the suspended bridges crossing the treetop canopy, the Morne Trois Pitons National Park in Dominica and Mexican cooking experience in Huatulco, passengers can learn to cook classic dishes such as enchiladas, stuffed chillies and Oaxaca chicken stew.

Thursday, 1 May 2008

First Impressions - A visit to the Ventura

The first impression of Ventura upon arrival at Southampton was how tall she is. A very modern design with more balcony cabins and open deck space than I had imagined.

The atrium is spectacular with mood changing light effects. A very bright and open space with comfortable sofas and easy chairs.

The most amazing children's centre and children's facilities on any ship that I have been on was one of the highlights of this ship visit.

The cabins - although smaller than I had hoped - were well equipped and fitted to a high standard. I was disappointed with the balcony cabins on Riviera Deck as they are all sheltered by a large overhang above. Also the mini suites on C and D deck are overlooked by cabins on A, B, and R deck. This should be made aware to customers either in the brochure or on Amadeus.

Food, as usual, was plentiful and well presented - and it didn't taste too bad either.

Although only an overnight ship visit, I feel the experience of seeing Ventura and sampling her facilities will provide valuable information for the future.

Karen - CruiseDirectUK