Sydney named best cruise destination by Cruise Critic
Sydney has been named the best cruise destination in Australia and New Zealand in the first ever Cruisers’ Choice Destination Awards.
NSW Minister for Trade, Tourism and Major Events Stuart Ayres welcomed the accolade, which was bestowed on the Harbour City by Cruise Critic, the world’s leading cruise review website.
“This award is based on the reviews and opinions of passengers to Sydney over the past year and is a fantastic achievement.
“It goes to show our tourism industry is truly putting on a first-class show, delivering unforgettable experiences and shore excursions to guests,” Ayres said.
Destination NSW Chief Executive Officer Sandra Chipchase said Sydney is an essential stop for cruiseliners.
“As one of the world’s most dynamic and beautiful cities, Sydney continues to be a ‘marquee’ port and gateway to Australia, offering travellers an abundance of pre- and post-cruise ship options,” Chipchase added.
Olympians make splash on P&O Cruises
Champion Olympians Cate and Bronte Campbell were making a splash onboard P&O Cruises’ Pacific Dawn on the weekend, with the swimming sisters taking some time out on the high seas on their first ever cruise.
The popular duo enjoyed their first swim since they left the Olympic pool in Rio last month, taking a dip in Pacific Dawn’s pool before trying their hand at some of the top deck P&O Edge Adventure Park activities including the flying fox and segways.
Onboard the three-night food and wine themed cruise to talk about healthy eating in their role as Uncle Tobys’ ambassadors, the sisters drew a big crowd at a special Q&A session with guests, afterwards signing autographs and giving fellow passengers the chance to wear their Olympic medals.
The sisters also made waves on the bridge, with the ship’s Captain and crew giving them a special tour during their time onboard.
Cate and Bronte hosted an exclusive Uncle Tobys’ breakfast with guests and took part in healthy breakfast presentations to passengers over the three days, discussing Uncle Tobys’ role in nourishing the active Australian lifestyle.
The sisters also raised more than $700 for P&O’s charity Save the Children though the special Uncle Tobys’ breakfast and a passenger auction of a swimming costume donated by the girls.
The pinnacle of expeditions with Ponant
Four new yachts will soon be added to the Ponant fleet, confirming the cruise line’s position as the world leader in luxury expeditions. The first two will arrive in time for the Summer 2018 season and the other two for Summer 2019.
Combining great design, cutting-edge technology, a small capacity and respect for the environment, these new ships will enable Ponant to offer an ever-wider range of destinations.
Le Lapérouse, Le Champlain, Le Bougainville, Le Kerguelen: the names of the 4 ships in the PONANT EXPLORERS series pay tribute to great French explorers who set sail to discover new continents.
This choice reflects Ponant’s loyalty to the French flag, the safest in the world according to the Paris MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) ranking for flags in 2013 and 2014. Ponant is the only cruise ship operator flying this flag, a guarantee of environmental quality, ship safety and good working conditions.
The names of the 4 ships also pay tribute to Ponant’s expertise in luxury expeditions and to its legitimacy as world leader: the PONANT EXPLORERS are designed to gain access to the most inaccessible locations and to go further, where others do not go.
The European Waterways’ 2017 Collection
September sees the launch of European Waterways’ new 2017 brochure, featuring a wide choice of exclusive hotel barge cruises on the canals, rivers and lakes of mainland Europe and the British Isles – France, Italy, Scotland, Ireland, England, Germany, Belgium, Holland and Luxembourg.
The new, full-colour, fully-illustrated brochure, enlarged to 88 pages, highlights all of the company’s 17 vessels, including images of the latest to join the fleet; new, double-decker, hotel barge Finesse, which this year successfully completed its first season on the scenic River Saône and Canal du Centre in Southern Burgundy.
2017 will see more cruises being operated in the delightful Champagne region of France aboard the 12-passenger Panache – pages 66-69 of brochure; and a double-page spread on pages 12-13 highlights the popular Wine and Whisky regions and indicating the barges which cruise there.
Why Agents Help Drive American Queen Steamboat Company’s Expansion
“We’re pinching ourselves,” said Ted Sykes, president and chief operating officer of American Queen Steamboat Company.
The river cruise line is selling out its cruises on the Mississippi River and in the Pacific Northwest, and it is now pressured to increase capacity and expand its network or itineraries.
According to Sykes, as of August, American Queen bookings for future cruises have more than doubled the numbers from last year, and last year’s bookings during the same time were more than double the year before. By this summer, October 2017 was already sold out.
“What drives this is agented FITs,” Sykes said. “We’re an agent’s product: high-end, sophisticated and a complex sale, and agents have sent such a volume of FITs that we don’t have space for our large groups that supported us when we launched. We really need more capacity. Practically everything is going out 100 percent full.”
Celebrity Cruises reveals stunning $11 million makeover
On the eve of her arrival down under for her fifth consecutive season, Celebrity Cruises has revealed details of the extensive AUD$11.25 million revitalisation planned for Australia’s favourite cruise ship*, Celebrity Solstice, including “A Taste of Film” cinema experience under the stars, new Lawn Club cabanas, an authentic Japanese sushi restaurant and an all-new digital photo gallery.
Australians will be the first to experience Celebrity Solstice’s myriad of exciting new features. After making her debut as the first international cruise ship to return to Sydney for the summer season on 8 October, the 2,850-guest ship will cruise to Singapore where she will enter dry-dock on 22 October. Emerging nine days later, Celebrity Solstice will then sail into her Sydney home-port on 14 November.
“Since her very first season down under, Celebrity Solstice has won the hearts of Aussies to become Australia’s favourite cruise ship,” says Adam Armstrong, Managing Director of Celebrity Cruises in Australia and New Zealand.