No, your eyes are not deceiving you – we’ve published our Wednesday Cruise Wrap on a Thursday this week! And as you can imagine, it has led to complete and total anarchy in the Travel Weekly office.
CLIA announces 100 per cent testing on its cruise lines
Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) ocean cruise line members worldwide have agreed to conduct 100 per cent testing of passengers and crew on all ships with a capacity to carry 250 or more persons—with a negative test required for any embarkation.
CLIA also said it is confident in the industry’s ability to resume operations from US ports in a responsible, phased-in manner.
“Our actions will build off of the continued success the cruise industry has experienced with recent sailings in Europe and other parts of the world, as well as the guidance we’ve received from some of the world’s leading experts in medicine and science.
“We look forward to engaging in a thoughtful and productive dialogue with our partners and regulators in the United States to return to cruising in the region.”
Meanwhile, the associations Australasian head of international training and development, Peter Kollar, has received an award in the 2020 Seatrade Cruise Awards.
Sydney-based Kollar was given the Talent Development of the Year award in recognition of his efforts in creating extensive training and education programs for CLIA’s travel agent members.
Enchanted Princess officially joins Princess Cruises fleet
The newly completed Enchanted Princess (pictured above) was delivered to Princess Cruises today in an official handover ceremony presented via live streaming video from the Fincantieri Shipyard in Monfalcone, Italy. With the arrival of this 145,000-ton, 3,660-guest ship, Enchanted Princess expands the Princess Cruises global fleet of MedallionClass vessels.
The ceremony was virtually attended by executives from Carnival Corporation including Micky Arison, chairman of the board of Carnival Corporation; Arnold Donald, president and CEO; Stein Kruse, group CEO of Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Seabourn, Carnival Australia and Carnival UK; and Jan Swartz, group president of Princess Cruises and Carnival Australia. Fincantieri was represented by CEO Giuseppe Bono.
Enchanted Princess is the 100th cruise ship built by Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri. This milestone is significant for both companies since Crown Princess was the first ship to launch Fincantieri into the modern passenger shipbuilding business when it was delivered in 1990.
The finalisation of Enchanted Princess also marks the first ship to be completed during the time of COVID. Fincantieri was one of the first businesses to reopen in Italy, helping to energise the economy, while operating in new and innovative ways to ensure a safe and productive work environment.
Meanwhile, Princess Cruises has promoted captain Nick Nash, a 31-year veteran of Princess Cruises, to the rank of commodore of the cruise line’s global fleet. The title of commodore is an honour that is bestowed upon the most senior captain of a fleet of ships, and the position represents the highest rank attainable to a Princess Cruises mariner.
Uniworld unveils first looks at S.S. La Venezia
Uniworld Boutique River Cruises unveils its much-anticipated first look of the S.S. La Venezia, one of the newest Super Ships in its award-winning fleet of floating boutique hotels.
Sailing Northern Italy, the completely reimagined ship embodies the country’s timeless beauty, its artisan’s commitment to enduring quality and the passion Italians bring to food, art and living well.
Royal Caribbean Group extends suspension of cruising
Royal Caribbean Group will be extending the suspension of sailings to include those departing on or before 30 November 2020, excluding sailings from Hong Kong.
Celebrity Cruises will also be suspending their full 2020/21 summer program in Australia and Asia. Additionally, Azamara will be suspending their 2020/21 summer sailings throughout Australia and New Zealand, South Africa and South America.
For all bookings created by 30 November 2020, Royal Caribbean Group customers have the flexibility to cancel their cruise up to 48 hours prior to sailing and receive a full credit of the cruise fare paid for a future cruise through April 2022 and 4 May 2022, for Celebrity Cruises. The cruise company will also continue to offer its ‘Best Price Guarantee’ and ‘Lift and Shift’.
Silversea initiative wins Seatrade Cruise award for sustainability
Silversea Cruises was the winner of the 2020 Seatrade Cruise Award for Sustainability, sponsored by Cruise Baltic. The award recognizes the recipient for having shown that it put sustainability, both socially and environmentally, at the forefront of its business operations over the past 12 months.
The winner was announced on 6 October 2020, during the Seatrade Cruise Virtual event, and was determined by an independent panel of 14 experts from across the international cruise community.
The company was recognised for its pioneering Silversea Fund for the Galapagos, which is among a number of Silversea efforts aimed at enriching the communities and landscapes visited by its ships.
MSC Cruises launches 2021 Grand Mediterranean itineraries
MSC Cruises has released details of its 2021 Grand Mediterranean itineraries. The line offers weekly departures every Saturday or Sunday from Genoa or Venice, Italy.
Each Grand Mediterranean cruise is a unique experience combining two or three 7 night cruises to create an unforgettable voyage.
Over 14 or 21 days guests will visit iconic locations including the Leaning Tower of Pisa & Florence Duomo, Rome’s Colesseum & Sistene Chapel, picturesque Santorini, Old Town Dubrovnik, Pompeii and the UNESCO World Heritage site of Valletta and much more. Not forgetting the fine dining, spectacular entertainment, and pampering possibilities afforded by each elegant ship in the MSC Cruises fleet.
Sea Cloud Cruises sets its sights on starting-up in Spring 2021
Hamburg shipping company Sea Cloud Cruises has cancelled its entire winter program in the Caribbean.
Sealink partners with Enchanted Fig Tree, for new Kangaroo Island Gastronomo Dining Experience
SeaLink Kangaroo Island has partnered with Kangaroo Island’s magical dining experience, the Enchanted Fig Tree, as the exclusive transport partner, to bring together a series of wilderness dining events – Gastronomo, hosted by some of South Australia’s most celebrated chefs, from 11 December 2020 to 30 April 2021.
Kangaroo Island visitors will once again dine amongst the dappled light of the 100-year-old Fig Tree’s boughs after the venue closed to the public in 2018 when a localised fire partially burnt the property.
Over Gastronomo’s five-month season, guests will begin their culinary experience with a welcome cocktail beside the Mulberry Tree or in the property’s rustic shearing shed, before dining under the gnarled limbs and sun-dappled chambers of The Enchanted Fig Tree.
Swan Hellenic lands in Asia with a dedicated partnership
Swan Hellenic has signed a strategic partnership agreement with Tam Wing Kun Holdings Limited to provide a direct presence in Asia.
Tam Holdings offers the highest standards of service and efficiency, with over 40 years’ experience across the travel sector, representing many of the world’s leading airlines and logistics companies in Asia through offices or partners in China (Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Taiwan) Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Vietnam and Indonesia.
The partnership is a strategic agreement in line with Swan Hellenic’s long-term approach of establishing a direct presence in every market worldwide to offer the close personal service to which it is committed.
Viking.TV celebrates six months of award-winning programming
Viking.TV has broadcast more than 160 sessions featuring original cultural content and virtual Privileged Access to interesting people and places around the world.
Livestreams and archived content on Viking.TV has been enjoyed by more than two million viewers, which include past Viking travellers and Viking crew, as well as those who have not travelled with Viking. Additionally, Viking.TV was recently honoured with the “Breakthrough Award for Product Innovation” in the 2020 Silver Travel Award.
Seabourn extends Early Bonus Savings promotion
Seabourn has extended its Early Bonus Savings promotion, offering more opportunities for travel agents to earn commissions much sooner while also offering their clients an additional discount by taking advantage of the promotion.
Guests who pay their booking in full by 20 November 2020, will receive an additional 10 per cent savings off the base cruise fare, with the travel advisor earning the opportunity to receive their commission now rather than later once full payment is made.
The promotion applies to select voyages from summer 2021 through winter/spring 2022.
The line has also cancelled upcoming 2020 and 2021 voyages for three cruise ships in its fleet into Spring 2021.
The announcement applies to Seabourn Odyssey, Seabourn Ovation, and Seabourn Encore. Specific details are as follows:
- Seabourn Odyssey: with its operations pause effective through 15 January 2021.
- Seabourn Ovation: with its operations pause effective through 18 April 2021.
- Seabourn Encore: with its operations pause effective through 28 May 2021.
Holland America Line’s Rotterdam reaches next building milestone
In anticipation of Rotterdam’s float-out next week, Holland America Line celebrated the ship’s coin ceremony on 1 October, at Fincantieri’s Marghera shipyard in Italy.
Following Italian shipbuilding tradition, Mai Elmar, executive director of Cruise Port Rotterdam in the Netherlands, served as the ship’s madrina and participated in the festivities.
During the socially responsible ceremony, Dutch coins minted in 1872 to honour Holland America Line’s first Rotterdam were welded to the outside deck of the ship to bring good fortune, followed by a blessing by the shipyard chaplain. In attendance were Antonio Quintano, director of the Fincantieri Marghera Shipyard; Cyril Tatar, Holland America Group’s vice president of newbuilding services; and Nico Bleichrodt, vice president, international sales, for Holland America Line.
Costa Smeralda restarts On 10 October From Savona
After the successful restart of cruising by Costa Deliziosa and Costa Diadema, Costa Cruises ship, Costa Smeralda will also return to cruise operations with new and enhanced health protocols.
For the restart of its flagship, the first ship in its fleet to be powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG), Costa Cruises has designed a new one-week itinerary dedicated to the rediscovery of the best of Italy.
A total of five cruises are scheduled, from 10 October to 7 November, that will allow guests to visit Italian cities of art and natural parks, as well as taste traditional local cuisine.
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines sees bumper sales week following launch of World Cruise aboard new ship Borealis
The launch of Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines’ inaugural World Cruise aboard new ship Borealis has delivered a bumper sales week – including sales of almost $2 million for its launch.
On 30 September, Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines unveiled the 101-night ‘Around the World’ sailing aboard Borealis, setting sail from Southampton on 6 January 2022, with the additional option of a 105-night sailing from Liverpool.
Within hours, the cruise had become one of the best-selling itineraries since Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines paused their operations in March, with sales well exceeding £1million.
Norwegian Cruise Lines announces extension of suspension of voyages
Norwegian Cruise Lines has extended its previously announced suspension of global cruise voyages to include all voyages embarking between 1 November through 30 November 2020 for its three cruise brands.
The company will continue to work in tandem with global government and public health authorities and its Healthy Sail Panel expert advisors to take all necessary measures to protect its guests, crew and the communities visited.
Guests who are currently booked on cancelled voyages on Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises or Regent Seven Seas Cruises are asked to contact their travel advisor or the cruise line for more information.
Meanwhile, the line is also celebrating a successful first day of its Walk for Wellness challenge, with the initiative having launched on 6 October 2020.
In the first 24 hours travel partners and NCL team members from across Australia and New Zealand, stepped a combined total of 2,377 kilometres in a walking event like no other, promoting health and wellbeing within the travel community.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises extends Elevate Your Experience
Regent Seven Seas Cruises has extended its Elevate Your Experience promotion through 13 November 2020, enhancing luxury travel for their guests with a FREE Two-Category Suite Upgrade, up to a Penthouse Suite, and a reduced 10 per cent deposit on select 2021 cruises in Alaska, the Mediterranean or Northern Europe.
The cruise line has also added several additional Mediterranean itineraries to the promotion, with up to 25 per cent off.
The FREE Two-Category Suite Upgrade could see guests maximising their holiday time with a FREE 1-Night Pre-Cruise Hotel Stay when they upgrade to a Concierge Suite or have every whim taken care of by a personal butler, among other luxurious perks and amenities, if upgraded to a Penthouse Suite.