Cruise

Big Fat Cruise Wrap

This cruise wrap is bigger than some of the cruise ships featured! And yes, we’d like you to take everything we say literally.

Weather Advisory for Blue Lagoon Cruises Fiji

Due to adverse weather conditions with Tropical Cyclone Keni, please see our amendment and cancellation policy below. All guests on the below departures have been contacted by Blue Lagoon Cruises and given documentation as follows:

Friday 06 April 2018:

  • Three night “Explorer” cruise
  • Seven night “Escape to Paradise” cruise

Full refund with instructions to contact their travel agent in due course.

Monday 09 April 2018:

  • Four night “Wanderer” cruise

Defer travel until 31 March 2019 without penalty or full refund with instructions to contact their travel agent in due course.

For all queries relating to these two departure dates please email cruisecentre@bluelagooncruises.com. Please note there may be some delay in answering your email.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises reveals new details on Seven Seas Splendor

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Regent Seven Seas Cruises has unveiled details for Seven Seas Splendor’s awe-inspiring public spaces and ten sophisticated suite categories for debut in 2020. The cruise line is building upon the elegance of its existing ships with lush designs and distinguishing upgrades that will captivate travelers and exceed their expectations, as they indulge in all-inclusive luxury across the globe.

Several popular areas from sister ship Seven Seas Explorer on Decks Four and Five of Seven Seas Splendor will see some significant revisions. The Grand Staircase will now face the entrance to her largest restaurant, Compass Rose, evoking an enchanting sense of arrival for guests as they’re greeted by extraordinary decor. Fleet favourite, Coffee Connection is moving to the port side of the ship and is being expanded with a new al fresco seating area, allowing guests to savour their custom coffee creations and pastries while enjoying calm ocean breezes. Pan-Asian restaurant, Pacific Rim will remain on the port side, offering guests an unobstructed view of the eatery’s stately central sculpture from the Reception area.

In addition to the awe-inspiring public spaces, Seven Seas Splendor offers 375 airy suites, ranging from the 28 square metre, entry-level Veranda Suite, to the lavish 413 square metre Regent Suite. Each suite category has a distinctive look, with intricate design details that create an elegant and relaxing space for guests. Each well-appointed suite boasts a private balcony – some of the largest in the cruise industry – along with European king-sized Elite SlumberTM Beds adorned in sumptuous linens, and oversized bathrooms outfitted with rich marble and decorative tile.

Christmas in July Fun on the Murray Princess

Murray Princess and Cliffs

Get your Christmas fix early with Captain Cook Cruises celebrating Christmas in July on-board the PS Murray Princess on selected three, four and seven-night Murray River cruises between 6 July and 23 July 2018.

The Christmas in July cruises combine the popular three, four and seven-night cruise itineraries with Christmas in July festivities including a traditional Christmas Dinner or lunch, a range of Christmas themed activities and games, Christmas music, egg nog, and a visit from Santa with presents for all the guests.

In between celebrating Christmas its full steam ahead down the mighty Murray River to discover Australian history, culture, and wildlife on the PS Murray Princess, a modern replica of the paddle wheelers that cruised the Murray in the 1800’s.

Sit back in one of two cosy paddlewheel lounges, displaying views of the working paddle wheel, and enjoy the winter enchantment and ever changing scenery as the Murray Princess cruises past towering limestone cliffs, and along riverbanks lined with mallee scrub and red gum forests. Each day features exciting day trips to historic ports, sacred Aboriginal sites, a sheep station and woolshed, a native wildlife shelter and guided nature walks to learn about the ecology of the river.

P&O Cruises’ Ni Vanuatu Crew Members become Special Commonwealth Games Cheer Squad for Vanuatu Women’s Volleyball Stars

A contingent of Ni Vanuatu crew members from P&O Cruises’ have flown in to the Gold Coast as a special cheer squad for Vanuatu women’s beach volleyball stars Miller Pata and Linline Matauatu as they seek to win a medal for Vanuatu at the Commonwealth Games.

The crew members attending the semi-final and medal rounds of the women’s beach volleyball competition at the Games are ambassadors for the many Ni Vanuatu staff who work across the P&O fleet in line with the cruise line’s commitment to sharing the economic opportunities of cruising.

They arrived on the Gold Coast to the news that Miller and Linline had stormed into the semifinals after defeating England 2-1 in a three-set thriller.

The P&O Pacific Partnership, which is funded by guests’ voluntary contributions on each cruise booking, is already supporting accommodation costs for Miller and Linline enabling them to compete. Miller is mother to seven month old Tommy and children cannot stay in the official athletes’ village.

AYANA sets sail: introducing the world’s largest specially built Phinisi ship –  AYANA Lako di’a

AYANA KOMODO BIRD EYE VIEW

Asia’s leading independently owned hospitality brand AYANA Hotels will set sail to the world’s largest specially built Phinisi cruise ship, AYANA Lako di’a in July 2018.

AYANA Lako di’a (translates to “safe journey” in the local language of Flores will grace the crystal waters of the Komodo Islands, located one-hour away from Bali, via air. Surrounded by exquisite scenery, the archipelago is awash with nature’s finest mountains, waterfalls, flora, and fauna. The luxury yacht offers two, three or five night luxury excursions and will visit some of Komodo Island’s most famous landmarks including a port of call to the home of the Komodo dragon. The world’s largest lizard can be found residing within Komodo National Park, which holds recognition as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and named one of the ‘Seven Wonders of Nature’.

Offshore, the azure waters are a dive lover’s paradise. Famed as one of the world’s best dive spots, and suitable for year-round diving, there is a plethora of underwater activity to captivate both novice and experienced underwater explorers. Unlike traditional Indonesia cruising, AYANA Lako di’a will visit remote dive spots and underwater wonderlands frequented by few divers. These secret dive spots offer guests the opportunity to explore rare aquatic species, swim with manta rays and dive amongst coral gardens – all with crystal water clarity. Snorkeling, SUP Yoga, trawling, and dolphin watching are just a sample of the additional water activities available to guests.

Onboard the nine-bedroom luxury Phinisi, passengers can expect five-star luxury cabins, full dining options, aqua activities and equipment, as well as professional spa treatments. Alongside AYANA’s latest resort to open in Komodo in September 2018, AYANA Komodo Resort, Waecicu Beach, this one-of-a-kind sailing experience hails a new standard of travel.

Carnival Legend departs Sydney ahead of $65M dry dock

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Carnival Legend sailed out of Sydney Heads last night for her annual northern hemisphere summer season in Alaska, ahead of an exciting dry dock taking place in May 2018.

Carnival is investing A$65 million into Funship 2.0 upgrades that will offer holiday-makers a range of new dining and entertainment features on board. The dry dock will take place in Portland, Oregon in May.

Cruise lovers hoping to be some of the very first to sail on the newly renovated ship can book Carnival Legend’s 18-day return cruise from Hawaii to Sydney, departing Honolulu on 24 September 2018.

This 19-day transpacific will sail via stunning French Polynesia, with ports including Papeete, Moorea and Bora Bora, and crossing the international dateline, before arriving back in Sydney. Carnival Legend’s Australian summer season will start on 13 October 2018.

New 2018 ‘Crystal Getaways’ set for Crystal River Cruises

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Crystal River Cruises, the World’s Most Luxurious River Cruise Line, is unveiling more than two dozen new Crystal Getaways for three of its river ships, sailing between May and November of this year. The new collection of Getaways for the all-suite, all-butler Crystal Bach, Crystal Mahler and Crystal Ravel feature multiple over nights in regal cities on six- to nine-day voyages.

The new itineraries sail along the Danube and Rhine rivers, with calls in Austria, Germany, Hungary, Switzerland, Slovakia, Belgium and the Netherlands. Guests can explore medieval fortresses and cathedrals, cobbled alleyways of charming riverside town squares, centuries of art and musical heritage, and the contrasting cosmopolitan hubs of modern society that border Europe’s waterways – all while enjoying Crystal River Cruises’ award-winning standard of luxury and service.

In addition to these new Getaways, Crystal Bach will sail three previously announced Getaways to the Netherlands and Belgium, highlighting the spectacular tulips and high season of the region in April and May.

As with all Crystal River Cruises voyages, a collection of more than 200 inclusive shore-side adventures enhance the journey. To ensure that every detail of each experience is in line with Crystal’s exacting standards of service, excursion group sizes are limited to no more than 15 guests; for larger groups, guides are available to lead the tours in German, Spanish, Portuguese and other languages upon request. Crystal Collection shore excursions offer guest transport to iconic sites and regions via spacious motor coaches that include free WiFi.

Celebrity Cruises announces partnership with Forbes Travel Guide

Celebrity Solstice - Opera House - Richard Birch

Celebrity Cruises has announced a first-of-its-kind travel partnership with Forbes Travel Guide, a global authority on luxury service.

Celebrity is the first cruise line to secure a fleet wide partnership with Forbes Travel Guide, and hold itself to the highest luxury service standards in the world, further proving the brand’s commitment to world-class service.

Integrating its vast experience in assessing and verifying service and facility at the finest hotels and resorts in the world, Forbes Travel Guide now shares the same standards of luxury service to support Celebrity in the brand’s ongoing quest to raise the bar on service excellence.

For 25 years, Celebrity’s commitment to world-class service has been the brand’s calling card – the main reason why guests cruise with the brand year after year. From their stateroom attendant to their intuitive waiters, flair bartenders, and knowledgeable sommeliers, someone is always there with a smile and a helping hand.

Uniworld’s S.S. Beatrice sets sail on maiden voyage

Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection’s newest Super Ship, the S.S. Beatrice, set sail today on her maiden voyage along the Danube from Budapest to Giurgiu, with a land extension in Bucharest. Debuting with a fresh, sleek yacht-like design, the S.S. Beatrice is the first vessel in the brand’s award-winning fleet of floating boutique hotels to be upgraded to a Super Ship.

The S.S. Beatrice boasts yacht-style light wood with blue and white finishes throughout. Its renovated lobby features elegant mirrors, marble floors, a white Murano chandelier with blue shades, and a grand staircase made of nickel and black iron – a signature design element of Uniworld’s Super Ships. The ship’s redesigned lounge includes sofas and chairs with hand-made upholstery, a parquet floor and upholstered ceiling panels, solar shades, and new USB ports allowing guests to recharge anywhere they are sitting. The artwork throughout the ship includes pieces from Pablo Picasso, Alexander Calder and Pino Signoretto.

The ship offers four dining options all inspired by famous Austrian composers, including Mozart’s, the ship’s main restaurant; Wolfgang’s bar and lounge and newly added Schubert’s and Max’s. For guests seeking an immersive culinary experience onboard the S.S Beatrice, Max’s restaurant offers intimate cooking classes where guests can create local European cuisines alongside the chef. Menu highlights at Max’s include broccoli coleslaw, regional Bohemian bread pudding dumplings and homemade apple strudel.

Escape the Aussie Winter with up to 30 per cent off select Europe Adventure Cruises with Peregrine

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As the weather cools down and Aussies are looking to escape the winter chills, Peregrine Adventures has released a number of Adventure Cruise deals to the Northern Hemisphere.

With up to 30 per cent off, travellers can explore Hidden Gems of Greece in an eight day adventure with highlights including the islands of Amorgos, with its unusual rock hewn monastery, and Sifnos, known for its incredible cuisine. Local guides will take travellers to the charming villages of Lefke, Marpissa and Naoussa. Travellers can save 30 per cent off the 1 August 2018 departure that was $5,345 now from $3,741 (save from $1,604 per person twin share*).

Travellers can also soak up the sun for 30 per cent less on Peregrine’s eight day Cruise Spain, Portugal and Morocco . Travelling between Lisbon and Malaga, these itineraries visit Alhambra Palace in Granada, the jagged coastline of the Algarve Coast and wildlife in Ria Formosa National Park. This trip is onboard the four-star Harmony G that has 21 cabins meaning there’s never more than 40 travellers. The deal is $3,664 twin share for departures leaving 26 May and 2 June 2018 (was $5,235 – a saving of $1,571 per person twin share*).

There’s also 30 per cent off Iceland’s Wild West Coast eight day cruise where travellers will explore the far-flung west where only a fraction of tourists visit. Departing on 7 July 2018, this cruise is down to $4,039 from $5,770 per person twin share** (a saving of $1,731).

Take $100 off all 2018 Oceania Packages exclusive to Creative Cruising

Today Creative Cruising, Australia’s leading independent cruise wholesaler ,launched an exclusive $100 off incentive with Oceania Cruises.

This offer is applicable to any 2018 Oceania Cruises sailing with a minimum of three nights pre or post accommodation, booked and deposited before 31 May 2018. Alongside this offer, Creative Cruising has created some spectacular packages with incredible savings for their Travel Agency partners to on-sell to their clients.

With savings of up to $2,800 (per twin share) for select European sailings, clientscan discoverthe Mediterranean in luxurious style on intimate ships catering to just 684 or 1,250 guests.

Packages include special cruise fares,$100 land credit, choice of FREE on-board beverage package, shore excursions andmore! Call the Creative Cruising Reservations team today to discover special fares on award-winning itineraries to alluring destinations including Tahiti, New York and Rome!

Regent Seven Seas Cruises culminates multimillion dollar, fleet-wdie refurbishment program by unveiling newly redesigned Seven Seas Mariner

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In the final phase of Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ US$125 million refurbishment program, the company completed its bow-to-stern upgrade of Seven Seas Mariner, elevating the ship to the level of elegance set by Seven Seas Explorer and providing a consistent look and feel to the entire fleet. Seven Seas Mariner completed a 20-day drydock at Chantier Naval de Marseille, and has re-emerged with dramatic new culinary experiences, elegant new suite designs, and completely renewed elegant guest spaces.

Offering an even more elevated dining experience, all restaurants on board Seven Seas Mariner received a stylish redesign with enhanced art and décor. The newly updated steakhouse on Seven Seas Mariner, Prime 7, is now unlike any other restaurant in Regent’s fleet, with unique, rectangular light fixtures that are reminiscent of a sculpture across the ceiling, and cream-colored, pillow-backed chairs contrasted by sapphire walls and wood finishes.

The flagship restaurant Compass Rose is completely reimagined, with a popular menu offering guests an unprecedented level of personal customisation and choice, as well as a stunning new look with grand crystal chandeliers, rich wooden accents and celestial blue furnishings.

Replacing Signatures is Chartreuse, already a guest favourite aboard Seven Seas Explorer and Seven Seas Voyager. The restaurant boasts new furnishings, china, flooring and décor, along with a completely new menu that highlights modern French cuisine. Further enhancements were also made to La Veranda, allowing guests to indulge their palate while surrounded by a flawless ambiance.

Master Chef Nobu Matsuhisa to host culinary experiences aboard Crystal’s Serenity Baltic Voyage

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Crystal Cruises announced today that renowned chef Nobu Matsuhisa will join Crystal Serenity’s June 19, 2018 “Baltic Bliss” sailing from Stockholm to London. Planned for the sailing are special dinners, curated menus, book signings and other celebrations hosted by the master chef, whose Silk Road and The Sushi Bar (on Crystal Serenity) and Umi Uma (on Crystal Symphony) are the only Nobu restaurants at sea.

During the sailing, guests will have several opportunities to personally mingle with Nobu, and of course, indulge in his signature cuisine.
Two Omakase (meaning “chef’s choice”) dinners will showcase Nobu’s specialties, with one hosted in Silk Road prepared by Nobu and his personally trained chefs, including a signed copy of his cookbook. The other, an intimate “Ultimate Omakase Sushi Bar and Connoisseur’s Vintage Dinner,” will feature multiple courses prepared by Nobu, paired with rare sake and wines selected by Sake Master Hazu and Crystal’s own head sommelier. The special dinner will accommodate just nine guests at The Sushi Bar.

In addition to these exclusive dining experiences, Nobu will host cooking demos, book signing sessions, and sake tastings with Sake Master Hazu. Special programming will also include special flower design classes with Nicolai Bergmann of the Flower & Design Studio in Tokyo.

The “Baltic Bliss” voyage departs Stockholm for London on June 19, 2018, calling in Helsinki, Finland; Tallinn, Estonia; St. Petersburg, Russia; Berlin/Warnemunde, Germany; and Copenhagen, Denmark. Fares start at US$7,003 per person, double occupancy.

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Labor senator calls for corporate watchdog to investigate Rex

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Australian Border Force extends cruise ban by three months

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STUDY: Investing in additional staff training critical for travel industry’s future workforce

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South Australia’s pubs and cinemas to seat 80 people from June, as WA plans eased regional travel restrictions

by Christian Fleetwood

The moves from each state come as Jacinda Ardern weighs in on the Australian state border row, which she said would need to be sorted out before the trans-Tasman bubble gets the green light.

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Aviation Wrap: Air NZ shrinks exec team, Etihad’s new Sydney-London route + MORE

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Weekly webinar series to connect agents and suppliers

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G Adventures extends suspension of trips, launches another agent challenge

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Tourism

Giants in need: How the dependency on tourism endangers the wellbeing of captive elephants

by Dr Jan Schmidt-Burbach

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Woman dies after falling from balcony at Sydney hotel

by Huntley Mitchell

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Government’s $60bn JobKeeper cost error could see program extended for tourism sector

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