Did you spend your morning reading the latest hotel news and now have no idea on cruise? This wrap couldn’t have come at a better time.
Scenic Reveals New Tour Inclusions in 2018 Africa program
Scenic has launched two new itineraries in its 2018 program including Nairobi and South Africa’s Thornybush Game Reserve.
The 32 day Ultimate African Expedition has been extended by one day (from 31 days) and will now feature two nights in Durban at The Oyster Box – one of South Africa’s leading hotels – and an additional day in Nairobi.
The additional day in Nairobi provides opportunities for a tour of the local area, including the chance to feed giraffes, as well as visits to the home of famed Dutch author Karen Blixen and the original commercial tea gardens. In Nairobi, meat-loving guests can also enjoy a new Freechoice dining excursion to the famous outdoor Carnivore restaurant, while in Kenya a new Sundowners experience at Amboseli National Park has been added.
Scenic’s 24 day Grand African Safari has also been revamped to include flights from Cape Town to Hoedspruit, near Kruger National Park, ensuring more time at Thornybush Game Reserve for game drives; as well as a flight from Nairobi to Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania providing more time at Tarangire National Park.
Viking’s 20 Years of cruising celebration sale
The Viking 20th Anniversary Sale means guests can fly free when they book a 2017 New York, Bermuda & West Indies or Mid-Atlantic Crossing ocean itinerary before 31 August 2017.
New York, Bermuda & the West Indies itinerary: The 15-day cruise sails to at nine ports across the United States, Bermuda, Antigua, Guadeloupe, St. Kitts & Nevis, St Martin, The British Virgin Islands, St Thomas and Puerto Rico. Departing 13 October 2017, guests will experience the rich island cultures between New York and the Caribbean. Book any Penthouse Veranda and above and fly free. Pricing from $9,999pp for 13 October 2017 departure.
Mid-Atlantic crossing itinerary: The 12-day cruise stops at four ports across the United States, Bermuda and Portugal. Departing 6 November 2017, guests will sail in the wake of legendary navigators during a leisurely Atlantic crossing. Guests will begin where the Age of Discoveries blossomed, in Portugal’s capital of Lisbon and explore the pastel shades of Bermuda before disembarking in vibrant Miami. Book any Deluxe Veranda and above and fly free. Pricing from $5,595 for 6 November 2017 departure.
‘Hot’ Fiji Cruise Rates for Agents
Captain Cook Cruises Fiji is offering any frontline retail and wholesale agent who has completed the Captain Cook Cruises accreditation program, and one partner sharing, unbelievably ‘Hot’ rates on three, four, seven and eleven-night Fiji cruises with savings of up to $5380 per person. Prices start from as low as $480 per person for a three-night Yasawa Island Cruise, including all meals and APREN must be quoted at time booking.
Friends and children (5-17 years) also receive 25% off brochure fares. All three, four, seven and eleven-night cruises are aboard the 130-passenger, fully accommodated and newly refurbished MV Reef Endeavour small ship cruise vessel, equipped with a hydraulic platform to make getting on and off the ship easy. ‘Hot Agent’ rates for seven-night Yasawa Islands and Mamanuca and Discovery cruises start from $1120 per person twin share, save over $2960 per person.
‘Hot Agent’ rates are available until 1st September and are valid for any frontline retail and wholesale agent who have completed the Captain Cook Cruises Fiji accreditation program and one partner sharing a cabin. APREN must be quoted at time booking.
Holland America Line Offers Eight Ships and 35 Cruises on Panama Canal trips in 2017–18
Travellers who want to transit the lakes and locks of the Panama Canal will have eight Holland America Line ships and 19 cruises to choose from between fall 2017 through spring 2018. In addition to the full transits, ms Zuiderdam will offer two Southern Caribbean & Panama Canal Sunfarer itineraries that feature a partial transit through the Panama Canal.
Transits range from 14 to 23 days, and during the 2017–18 season, Holland America Line’s full and partial transits will carry more than 400,500 guests through the Central American man-made marvel.
In addition to the full transits, Zuiderdam will make sixteen partial transits between November 2017 and April 2018. The 10- and 11-day Southern Caribbean & Panama Canal Sunfarer itineraries include an exploration of the Canal’s Gatún Lake and a combination of Southern Caribbean calls in Aruba, Bonaire, Colombia, Costa Rica, Curaçao, Grand Cayman, Panama and Half Moon Cay. Cruise rates start at $2,079pp.
Azaara reveals 2018 azamazing evenings down under
Azamara Club Cruises has revealed details of new Azamazing Evening events for the boutique-cruise line’s return to Australia in 2018.
New events “A Taste of Western Australia” in Perth and “An Evening Symphony at St Paul’s Cathedral” in Wellington feature on select Azamara Journey local sailings in 2018.
In Adelaide, a brand new “Evening of Fine Wine and Entertainment at the National Wine Centre” will feature on Azamara Quest’s first Australian itinerary for the summer cruise season of 2018/19. And back by popular demand, Azamara guests can enjoy the Tasmania Symphony Orchestra event in Hobart in February 2018.
Renowned for longer stays and more overnights in port than any other cruise line, as well as personalised service and more inclusive amenities like wine, beer, soft drinks and self-service laundry, Azamara Club Cruises hosts one complimentary Azamazing Evening on worldwide voyages of seven nights or longer.
Cruise the Murray River with Early Booking Saver Fares
Book a three, four or seven-night Murray River cruise more than 60 days prior to departure and save up to 15% with Captain Cook Cruises ‘Early Booking Saver’ (EBS) fares.
Each day features exciting day trips to historic ports and guided nature walks to learn about the ecology of the river. The four and seven-night cruise visits a sacred Aboriginal site, sheep station and woolshed and a native wildlife shelter.
The three nights Discovery Cruise travels between Walkers Flat and Murray Bridge and departs every Friday at 4.30pm with Early Booking Saver (EBS) fares starting from AU$803.00 per person, twin share.
The four nights Outback Heritage Cruise travels between Mannum and Blanchetown and departs every Monday at 4.30pm and EBS fares start from AU$1099.00 per person, twin share.
The seven nights Murraylands and Wildlife Cruise travels between Blanchetown and Murray Bridge and departs every Friday and Monday at 4.30pm with EBS fares starting from AU$1639.00 per person, twin share including a complimentary Barossa Wine & Heritage tour.
Viking Cruises six month countdown to Australian arrival
Viking Cruises’ newest ocean ship, Viking Sun, will head to Australia for the first time in February 2018, marking the brand’s debut in Australian and New Zealand waters.
The sold out Viking World Cruise from Miami to London will visit Australia in February 2018, as part of the 141 day cruise covering five continents, 35 countries and 66 ports. The cruise will visit seven ports across Australia including Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Whitsunday Islands, Cairns, Thursday Island and Darwin before heading to Asia.
Viking will also begin homeporting out of Australia and New Zealand in December 2018 on a brand new itinerary that will see Viking Spirit, the fifth ship to join the fleet in July 2018, spend three months of the year cruising between Sydney and Auckland.
A second itinerary launching in November 2018 explores the Komodo and Australian Coast from Bali to Sydney over 17-days visiting the Great Barrier Reef’s Whitsundays, Brisbane’s picturesque coastline, as well as Darwin, Townsville and Newcastle.
Crystal Skye Joins the Crystal Fleet
Crystal AirCruises has welcomed the newest member of its expanding fleet, Crystal Skye, during an official handover ceremony held at Boeing Field in Seattle, Washington. Crystal Skye is the largest privately owned tour jet in the world and is deployed for chartered service, accommodating some of the world’s most discriminating groups and travellers. Crystal Skye will be christened in Las Vegas on August 12.
With a spacious design for up to 88 guests, Crystal Skye is appointed with features rarely found in even the most luxurious private jets. She has the highest crew to passenger ratio of any twin-aisle aircraft and a non-stop range of 19.5 hours, allowing travellers to explore the far reaches of the earth while enjoying the personalised service for which Crystal is renowned worldwide.
Bespoke Crystal Exclusive Class™ seats are designed for maximum personal space and ergonomic comfort, and convert to 180-degree lie-flat beds. The expansive social lounge with stand-up bar fosters friendly camaraderie among luxury travellers. Cuisine will be prepared by an executive chef, in two state-of-the-art galleys and paired with an elegant premium wine list from the Crystal SkyeCellar.
Holland America Line’s New Chocolate Surprise Is the Ultimate Decadent Dessert Parade
Holland America Line is reinventing the traditional dessert buffet by introducing a Chocolate Surprise parade on the last gala evening of every cruise. Rather than guests having to make their way to the buffet and wait in line for a sweet treat, Chocolate Surprise brings bite-sized confections to guests in the main public areas as they enjoy the evening’s entertainment.
After dinner, waiters parade through the Promenade decks with trays of chocolate desserts, passing them out to guests in the bars and lounges as they take in music or enjoy a cocktail. The nearly hour-long parade is the newest addition to Holland America Line’s growing list of culinary innovations that put an unconventional twist on a traditional event.
The Chocolate Surprise menu includes rich, creamy and chocolaty bite-sized desserts that will delight even the sweetest tooth. As servers with silver trays pass by, guests can choose from chocolate cones with lemon curd, bittersweet chocolate and butter cream; double chocolate cupcakes; dark chocolate hazelnut pops; milk chocolate raspberry tarts; chocolate macaroons with Grand Marnier; chocolate-dipped marshmallows and caramel puffed rice treats with chocolate sauce.
P&O Cruises’ Pacific Eden’s Entertainment Takes Centre Stage
P&O Cruises’ Pacific Eden will emerges from a multi-million dollar dry dock this month with two newly refurbished entertainment venues. The 55,820-tonne vessel is currently undertaking a 12-day transformation in Singapore ahead of the start of her highly-anticipated Cairns cruise season.
Pacific Eden’s two-storey Marquee Show Lounge is being given a stylish new look and feel with a dramatic black, white and emerald-green colour scheme, custom wallpaper and unique artworks. Popular late night hot spot, The Dome, will be updated to take on a contemporary nautical theme with dark navy blue and white hues, drapes and soft lighting.
Select mini-suites and balcony cabins fitted will receive new carpets and outdoor furniture whilst the cinema, spa, gym and HQ and HQ Plus will also be revitalised. In total, 11,000 square metres of new carpet will be fitted on the 1500-guest ship.
Pacific Eden is scheduled to emerge from dry dock on August 10 ahead of a 9-night sailing from Cairns to the Conflict Islands on August 24.
Aussie ‘Explorers’ offer Captain Bilton a hand
When P&O Cruises’ Pacific Explorer departed Sydney for Mooloolaba yesterday, Captain Roger Bilton had some unexpected guests arrive on the bridge.
Two inquisitive Sydneysiders – colourful lorikeets who had bypassed check-in and normal security procedures – flew in to lend the Captain a hand in the departure from the Overseas Passenger Terminal.
The two birds stuck around just long enough to know that the Captain didn’t really need two honorary ‘first mates’ for the harbour exit manoeuvre but he appreciated their kind offer.
Both chirpers soon realised that a career at sea wasn’t for them and were soon on their way for parts unknown at their usual cruising altitude.
Trust a pair of inquisitive Sydney lorikeets to stick their beaks in to see what was going on.
Celebrity cruises’ chef’s market discoveries
Celebrity Cruises has created a unique culinary shore excursion concept in its ‘Chef’s Market Discoveries’; offering exclusive on-shore adventures designed with food-lovers and budding chefs in mind.
Guests are led on an exclusive hands-on tasting tour by a Celebrity Cruises’ chef, who teaches the secrets of sourcing and cooking fresh ingredients from the region. After a day of discovery, the journey continues back onboard the ship with a galley tour – a private glimpse at Celebrity Cruises’ talented chefs at work – followed by an intimate, specially prepared dinner using the local flavours discovered that very day.
Celebrity Cruises’ renowned food and beverage program is overseen by Associate Vice President of Food and Beverage Operations, Cornelius Gallagher – an internationally-acclaimed Michelin star chef himself. Chef’s Market Discoveries are available on nine Celebrity ships, including Celebrity Millennium, sailing Asia itineraries throughout summer, and Australia’s highest-rated cruise ship, Celebrity Solstice, sailing New Zealand and South Pacific itineraries from October to April.
See what a Chef’s Market Discovery is all about at www.youtube.com/watch?v=f_kE17FauX0
Golf Themed River Cruises from Amadeus River Cruises, Hosted by PGA Pro.
River cruising specialists have launched their new Golf themed river cruises for 2018. Accompanied by PGA teaching golf pro Frank Adamowicz, golf-fans can now combine a thrilling river cruise through Europe, discovering the continent’s finest food, wine, history & culture, with their love for golf.
Each sailing will include visits to four prestigious golf courses – considered some of the best in the world – with all green fees and golf carts included, along with a host of special inclusions such as city and walking tours.
Travellers can choose from three routes. Sailing the Seine in Northern France, along the majestic Danube or along the mighty Rhine. These eight day golf cruises are available to book now.
Golf Package prices start from $6,776 per person, based on double occupancy. Price includes estimated return international economy airfares from major Australian capital cities, arrival and departure transfers (airport to ship v.v.), golf at four different courses, green fees, shared golf carts and services of experienced golf expert and PGA teaching golf pro, Frank Adamowicz.
Holland America Line’s Explore4 Promotion is Back with Four Enticing Offers
Holland America Line’s Explore4 promotion is back with four alluring offers on more than 600 March 2018 through April 2019 cruises.
Travellers looking to book a cruise or Alaska Land+Sea Journey for next year or beyond can take advantage of all the benefits, which include complimentary beverages and specialty dining aboard ship, as well as reduced deposits and reduced fares for friends and family. Suite bookings also receive onboard spending money.
The Explore4 promotion for guests booking any category stateroom includes a Signature Beverage Package valued at US$1,400 per stateroom (based on a 14-day cruise), dinner at the Pinnacle Grill for two, reduced cruise fares for friends and kids in the same stateroom and 50 percent reduced deposits. Guests receive all benefits, and bookings must be made by Nov. 17, 2017.
Guests who book a cruise in a suite category stateroom will receive the four offers plus an additional US$200 onboard spending money per stateroom (US$100 per person).