PRESS RELEASE_MIAMI (March 28, 2018) – In a traditional maritime handover ceremony held earlier today at the Fincantieri shipyard in Italy, Carnival Cruise Line officially took delivery of the new 133,500-ton Carnival Horizon, the 26th ship in its fleet.
The 3,954-passenger ship will reposition to Barcelona, Spain, where it will depart April 2 on an inaugural 13-day voyage – the first of four sailings from the European port. The ship will then operate a trans-Atlantic crossing before arriving in New York May 23, 2018, for a pierside overnight gala and naming ceremony featuring the ship’s godmother, Grammy award-winning musical artist and acclaimed actress Queen Latifah.
Following a summer schedule of four-day Bermuda and eight-day Caribbean sailings from New York, Carnival Horizon will shift to Miami for a year-round schedule of six- and eight-day Caribbean cruises beginning Sept. 22, 2018.
Carnival Horizon offers several unique and exciting features, including a new Dr. Seuss-themed WaterWorks aqua park, part of the line’s exclusive partnership with Dr. Seuss Enterprises, Bonsai Teppanyaki, the line’s first teppanyaki venue, and Guy’s Pig & Anchor Smokehouse|Brewhouse serving up “real deal” barbecue favorites created by Food Network star Guy Fieri, as well as four new craft beers brewed on board.
The second in the line’s highly successful Vista-class, Carnival Horizon also offers fun innovations like the bike-ride-in-the-sky aerial attraction SkyRide, an IMAX Theatre, the Havana section with tropics-inspired staterooms and its own pool, and Family Harbor featuring extra-roomy accommodations and the Family Harbor Lounge. Like its name implies, Carnival Horizon also includes food and beverage outlets offering amazing views with both indoor and al fresco seating options at venues such as Bonsai Sushi, Fahrenheit 555 steakhouse and Library Bar.
“Carnival Horizon is an absolutely stunning ship offering so many ways to ‘Choose Fun’ both inside and out,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “In addition to the many exciting innovations previously introduced on Carnival Vista, Carnival Horizon offers some new one-of-a-kind features and attractions that make this ship truly special allowing our guests to create a lifetime of wonderful vacation memories,” she added.
Finishing up a season cruising throughout Asia, Sapphire Princess departs today on a 28-day voyage from Singapore to London, before beginning European voyages to sought-after destinations in the Mediterranean and Northern Europe including Monte Carlo, Lisbon, Brussels, St. Petersburg and an opportunity to cruise the Norwegian Fjords during Summer Solstice.
“Sapphire Princess is the latest ship to debut many of the signature offerings we know our guests value, enjoy and look forward to experiencing when they travel the world with Princess,” said Jan Swartz, Princess Cruises president. “This investment continues our $450 million ‘Come Back New Promise,’ a multi-year ship renovation campaign,” added Swartz.
New and enhanced offerings aboard Sapphire Princess include:
PRESS RELEASE_MIAMI (March 26, 2018) – Carnival Paradise returns to year-round cruise service today from Port Tampa Bay following an extensive month-long dry dock that added a variety of spaces and innovations, including a spectacular water park, 38 new staterooms, 98 balconies added to existing accommodations, and an array of exciting food and beverage concepts.
Carnival Paradise departs this afternoon on a five-day Caribbean cruise to Cozumel and Grand Cayman – part of the ship’s year-round sailings from Tampa that also include four-day cruises to Cozumel and five-day cruises to Cozumel and Mahogany Bay (Roatan), Key West or Grand Cayman. The ship also offers four- to eight-day cruises to Cuba featuring day-long and overnight calls in Havana, as well as visits to popular ports throughout the Caribbean.
“We can’t wait for our guests to check out the fantastic new features aboard Carnival Paradise, which returns to service better than ever offering an exciting combination of itineraries featuring top destinations in the Caribbean, Mexico and Cuba,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line.
The new features added during dry dock include:
PRESS RELEASE_MIAMI, March 23, 2018 – Thirty-six months, 4,700 shipbuilders and crew, and one common goal: to deliver the ultimate family adventure. Royal Caribbean International honored the instrumental project team of Symphony of the Seas during the highly anticipated delivery event at STX France shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France today. Michael Bayley, President and CEO of Royal Caribbean International, Richard Fain, Chairman and CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., and Laurent Castaing, General Manager of STX France, led the traditional flag-changing ceremony, which symbolizes the ship’s official delivery from the ship builder to Royal Caribbean. The maritime ritual was followed by a celebration of the industry’s best, the crew whose hard work and meticulous collaboration came together to create the world’s largest cruise ship.
“Symphony of the Seas is the latest example of how our people work to push the envelope of innovation with each new ship,” said Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. Chairman and CEO Richard D. Fain. “The Oasis Class has been a trend-setting design, but the team has evolved the design to build on that success to provide even more incredible family adventures. We’re thankful to have a partner in STX France that is every bit as ambitious as we are about building technologically advanced ships.”
“It is a proud and exhilarating moment to welcome a new member to the family. Thanks to our stellar crew and partners at STX France, we now are ready to embark on this new boundless adventure that comes to life on Symphony of the Seas,” said Michael Bayley, President and CEO, Royal Caribbean International. “Symphony will take family vacationing to an all new level with energy and options never before found in one place. This ship is the perfect blend of our greatest hits we know guests love and a lineup of vibrant, new restaurants, activities and unparalleled entertainment – all purposefully designed around vacationers’ preferences.”
“Today is a day of pride for me, all STX France and sub-contractor teams as we hand over Symphony of the Seas to her owner as the largest cruise ship ever built,” said Laurent Castaing, General Manager of STX France. “Symphony will leave Saint-Nazaire yard as the ultimate example of our progress-driven spirit and commitment to innovation, which are at the heart of our partnership with Royal Caribbean, who is always challenging us in this direction.”
The 25th ship in Royal Caribbean’s fleet, Symphony of the Seas is 228,081 gross registered tons, measures 238 feet tall and spans 1,188 feet long. She will welcome 5,518 guests at double occupancy in 2,759 staterooms, including 28 additional balcony rooms that overlook the ocean or signature Boardwalk neighborhood. One Oasis Class ship, seven distinctive neighborhoods, the tallest slide at sea with the Ultimate Abyss and countless adventures for guests of all ages, the family adventure of a lifetime has surprises at every turn:
PRESS RELEASE_SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (March 23, 2018) – Beginning this summer, Princess Cruises guests sailing to the colorful Caribbean will experience a new immersive cultural experience with the “Rhythm of the Caribbean,” offering an authentic dive into island life. From the moment guests step aboard their Caribbean cruise, they will be swept away in the lively spirit of the islands with enticing cuisine, signature cocktails, exhilarating entertainment, enrichment and authentic regional experiences.
“We passionately opened our hearts and minds to the diverse local experiences to design ‘Rhythm of the Caribbean’ ultimately allowing our guests to be inspired by the wonders of the Caribbean and instill a passion for discovering new cultures and destinations,” said Rai Caluori, Princess Cruises executive vice president of guest experience and product development.
Guests can also take advantage of insider tips on must-do excursions at each port, dance beneath the stars to vibrant Caribbean rhythms and immerse themselves in one-of-a-kind cultural activities – from concerts to crafts, to enthralling presentations from local experts like shark and treasure hunters.
“Rhythm of the Caribbean” launches aboard Caribbean Princess in May 2018 and is scheduled to roll out to additional ships for the upcoming fall/winter Caribbean season. Offerings include:
Princess sails year-round to the Caribbean, with a variety of cruises roundtrip from Ft. Lauderdale. More information about the “Rhythm of the Caribbean” and cruises can be found at www.princess.com/caribbean.
Princess Cruises is a recognized destination leader in the cruise industry, named “Best Cruise Line in the Caribbean” by U.S. News & World Report for 2015 and the cruise line’s private island beach in the Bahamas, Princess Cays, was ranked among the “Top Cruise Line Private Island Destinations” by Cruise Critic for 2017.
PRESS RELEASE_London, UK (March 21, 2018) — MSC Cruises, the world’s largest privately owned cruise company and leading cruise line in Europe and South America, revealed today another industry first with the introduction of a digital cruise personal assistant as a new feature of MSC for Me, the Company’s digital innovation program. This new and ground-breaking guest service, developed in partnership with HARMAN International, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., and leader in connected technologies for automotive, consumer and enterprise markets, will debut on MSC Bellissima, which is currently under construction at the STX France shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France.
The Company also announced that MSC Bellissima, which will be MSC Cruises’ next flagship, will be christened in the port of Southampton, UK on March 2, 2019. The two announcements were made today in London at the launch of MSC Cruises’ new 2019-2020 brochure to travel agent partners and media.
“This is another example of how we are continuously innovating to better serve the needs of not only the cruise guests of today but also those of the future, as we continue to shape the future of the cruise vacation,” said Gianni Onorato, CEO of MSC Cruises. “We employ state-of-the-art technology in a uniquely comprehensive way, building it into every step of the development of our new ships, starting from their conception and design to the final guest experience. It is through our cruise expertise, the skill of our shipyard partners and our unique collaborations with world-leading digital and technology experts such as Samsung and, now, HARMAN that we are able to introduce ground-breaking technology to provide our guests with a connected experience that enhances their cruise from beginning to end.”
The virtual personal assistant for MSC Cruises guests is a conversational, voice-enabled Artificial Intelligence (AI) innovation that can communicate, learn and intelligently predict guests’ needs to make relevant suggestions. This new and unique offering will provide guests with tailored information to help simplify and enhance their MSC Cruises experience by providing quick and easy answers to questions from the comfort of their own stateroom.
PRESS RELEASE_MIAMI (March 21, 2018) – Carnival Cruise Line today began accepting reservations for the 133,500-ton Carnival Panorama, which kicks off its year-round seven-day Mexican Riviera schedule from Long Beach, Calif., Dec. 14, 2019, becoming the first new Carnival ship homeported on the West Coast in 20 years.
Prior to the launch of seven-day service, Carnival Panorama will offer a special one-time three-day cruise to Ensenada from Long Beach Dec. 11-14, 2019.
Carnival Panorama will offer a three-port, seven-day itinerary from Long Beach, departing every Saturday to stunning destinations along the Mexican Riviera, including Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlán and Puerto Vallarta. During these cruises, guests can relax on world-class beaches, visit centuries-old historical sites, and enjoy unforgettable dining and shopping opportunities and exciting experiences ashore.
“Carnival Panorama promises to be a spectacular addition to our fleet and we’re delighted to provide our guests with an opportunity to be among the first to sail on our first new ship on the West Coast in two decades,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line.
Voyages will depart from the newly refurbished Long Beach Cruise Terminal, housed in a massive 146,000-square-foot geodesic dome that once housed Howard Hughes’ Spruce Goose airplane. The expanded facility offers a streamlined embarkation and debarkation process along with stunning design elements that pay homage to the Golden State, including a mural of the Sierra Nevada mountains and replicas of the Spruce Goose.
Currently under construction at the Fincantieri shipyard in Marghera, Italy, Carnival Panorama will offer groundbreaking attractions like a bike-ride-in-the-sky attraction called SkyRide, a massive WaterWorks aqua park, and the SportSquare open-air recreation area, along with a vibrant Havana section with tropics-inspired staterooms and its own Cuban-themed bar and pool, Family Harbor featuring extra-roomy accommodations and the luxurious Cloud 9 Spa. Like its name implies, Carnival Panorama will also offer both indoor and al fresco food and beverage concepts, including the Fahrenheit 555 steakhouse, Library Bar, and Bonsai Sushi.
Additional innovations unique to this vessel will be announced at a later date.
PRESS RELEASE_Geneva, Switzerland (March 21, 2018) — MSC Cruises, the world’s largest privately-owned cruise line and market leader in Europe and South America, has announced a new partnership with award-winning Spanish chef Ramón Freixa, starting this April. Chef Freixa embodies excellence in Spanish cuisine with his innovative and modern style and will further enrich the MSC Cruises fine-dining offering.
The partnership was launched at an exclusive MSC Cruises event, hosted at Freixa’s eponymous two Michelin Star restaurant in Madrid at Hotel Unico, and will introduce exceptional main dishes and tapas developed by Chef Freixa across the fleet, as well a selection of dishes designed especially for the Christmas and New Year menus. Plans are also underway to launch a gastronomy cruise for gourmands across the world in search of the ultimate food and travel experience.
Working with MSC Cruises’ own team of elite chefs, Ramón Freixa will complete in-depth, interactive training, passing on his skill and expertise to enable all MSC Cruises’ chefs to recreate his signature dishes to the highest possible standards.
“We are delighted to welcome Chef Freixa to our already impressive line-up of international chefs and restaurateurs, each selected as leading global experts in their respective cuisines.. With their own distinct styles, flair and vision, together they create a unique fine-dining experience for our guests,” said Gianni Onorato, CEO of MSC Cruises. “We seek to work with world-class experts in their field and to collaborate with partners who hold the same core values as us. Ramón Freixa is the perfect partner for us, sharing our strong Mediterranean heritage, the desire to innovate, a commitment to excellence and a real passion for food.”
Freixa is known for his ability to create a balance between tradition and avant-garde, taking his inspiration from his Mediterranean roots. In addition to being awarded with two Michelin Stars and three Sol Repsol for his eponymous restaurant in Madrid, he has also been recognized with awards for culinary excellence as best chef and best restaurant. Having two restaurants in Madrid and one in Columbia, making appearances on Spanish Celebrity Masterchef, and authoring four books, Chef Freixa holds international appeal.
VALENCIA, Calif., March 20, 2018 – Luxury cruise line Cunard has announced a line-up of expert speakers for its second annual Transatlantic Space Week. The 9-night voyage on the line’s flagship, Queen Mary 2, departs New York October 7, 2018 and arrives in Southampton October 16, 2018. The voyage will once again coincide with International World Space Week, which has taken place from October 4, to October 10 ever since its United Nations declaration in 1999.
The transatlantic journey will feature a variety of space-themed experiences including talks from distinguished space explorers including:
Dr. Jeffery Hoffman, a former NASA astronaut and Shuttle pilot. Hoffman made five space flights, becoming the first astronaut to log 1,000 hours of flight time aboard the Space Shuttle. He is now Professor of Aerospace Engineering in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
Robin Scagell of the Royal Astronomical Society is a lifelong astronomer and the author of numerous books including Complete Guide to Stargazing, 101 Things to Spot in the Night Sky, The Urban Astronomy Guide.
Dr Lawrence Kuznetz, a former flight controller during Apollo and a 40-year veteran of the space program. Kuznetz helped to build the space shuttles and is a former Life Science Experiment Manager for the International Space Station.
“Throughout Cunard’s history the line has been synonymous with adventure and exploration, and we are excited to offer our guests the opportunity to learn about the vast wonders of space from some of the greatest explorers of our time,” said Josh Leibowitz, senior vice president, Cunard North America. “Our acclaimed Insights program creates a unique opportunity for our guests to interact with experts from around the world.”
Queen Mary 2 is the only ship to have a full-sized planetarium, Illuminations, on board, offering a variety of constellation shows and virtual reality rides throughout the day on each Transatlantic Crossing. Cunard’s partnership with the Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) allows the ship to offer specially-curated shows putting distant stars and galaxies into focus and explaining what passengers can see in the night sky at different times of the year.
PRESS RELEASE_MIAMI, FL – March 20, 2018 – Scale a volcano, race a yacht, or explore the rainforest as part of Celebrity Cruises’ new range of exciting world-opening experiences designed in collaboration with world-renowned adventurer Ben Fogle. The new excursions are an expansion of the top-rated Ben Fogle’s Great Adventures excursion series currently offered in Europe.
Ben Fogle’s Great Adventures program enables guests to explore destinations through the eyes of a local; they can experience culture, history, famous sights, wildlife and adventure at ports of calls throughout Europe, and now the Caribbean and Alaska as well.
“No one understands adventure quite like Ben Fogle, and that’s why we are further expanding our guest-favorite Ben Fogle’s Great Adventures program from nine tours to 20 tours around the world,” said Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, President and CEO, Celebrity Cruises. “Destination is a pillar of our brand and these tours will build on that while also expanding our award-winning shore excursion portfolio, taking guests to new heights – from the peak of a dormant volcano in the Caribbean to the glistening glaciers of Alaska – and opening their world like never before.”
Recently appointed Celebrity Cruises Global Destination Ambassador, Fogle has designed these new exhilarating journeys across the Caribbean and Alaska for the first time, as well as new additions in Europe.
“I’m so excited to share some of my favorite destinations as part of the new series of Great Adventures,” said Ben Fogle, Celebrity Cruises’ Global Destination Ambassador. “My new role as Global Destination Ambassador allows me to indulge my shared passion with Celebrity Cruises of opening up the world with incredible experiences. Some are not for the faint-hearted, such as climbing a volcano to its peak 3,792 feet above sea level, but the rainforest sights and sounds on the way up and views at the top are well worth the ascent.”
Fogle’s global travels have been the inspiration of these 11 new and inspiring activities, added to the Ben Fogle’s Great Adventures program, in some of the planet’s most awe-inspiring locales, including:
Ocean Yacht Racing in Antigua – Indulge that competitive spirit and set sail getting as hands-on as guests want – work the winches, trim the main sail or even take the helm and steer the yacht to victory. Or they can simply sit back and enjoy the incredible views and soak up the sun.
Mount Liamuiga Volcano Hike in St. Kitts – Climb to lofty new heights and ascend through the tropical rainforest, enjoying the incredible flora and fauna to the rim of the dormant volcano’s crater. Once at the peak enjoy the reward of stunning panoramic views, even over to neighboring islands on a clear day.
Icy Strait Point Kayak Adventure in Alaska – Become immersed in nature and paddle among the raw beauty of the Alaskan wilderness. Explore remote bays and spot the local wildlife including sea lions, eagles and even brown bears on the shore.