(ROYAL CARIBBEAN)_March 2023 – From families to couples, to groups of friends, every type of vacationer can make memories their way every day on Royal Caribbean’s #IconoftheSeas, even when it comes to where they stay. In “Making an Icon: Creating Next-level Accommodations,” the experts walk through the longest timeframe the cruise line’s ever dedicated to designing the perfect homebase, 28 different types, for everyone. Discover details about the research, design and construction of the rooms on the first-of-its-kind combination of the best of every vacation, where every detail was scrutinized to create more categories for families, more layouts with ocean views and more space for groups of three, four, five and more.
(PRESS RELEASE)_DALLAS – Omni Hotels & Resorts launched its latest lineup of programs and packages just in time for the summer season. Aimed at providing guests with a special brew of refreshing and unforgettable experiences across its portfolio of 50+ hotels and resorts nationwide, Omni has proclaimed this to be the ‘Summer of Tea,’ unveiling an imaginative lineup of tea-inspired menus in partnership with Numi Organic Tea, lobby activations, wellness offerings, and surprise & delight moments for guests of all ages, each steeped in the spirit of summer.
To sweeten the pot, Omni is partnering with SCOUT© Bags to offer an exclusive travel tote as part of its ‘Carried Away’ package, including generous hotel and resort credits toward everything from world-class dining and award-winning spa to championship golf and a myriad of outdoor activities for the entire family. Learn more about the summer experiences available now through September 2023 at www.OmniHotels.com/Summer.
By GERRY BARKER
As our ship, American Constellation, eases into Port Angeles harbor, it’s like we’re docking in a post card. Rising majestically on the horizon are the Olympic Mountains, framing the picturesque town below. It’s easy to see why the Spanish explorer who discovered the area named the harbor, “The Port of Our Lady of the Angels,” which later became Port Angeles.
There’s much to see and do in this region, and as part of a 10-night, Grand Puget Sound cruise on American
Cruise Lines, we’ll spend two days here. One day is devoted to seeing Butchart Gardens in Victoria, British Columbia. For the other, we are taking an excursion to Lake Crescent Lodge in Olympic National Park.
If you love the outdoors, and the natural beauty you can find in America’s national parks, this is your kind of travel.
(PRESS RELEASE)_Saint Nazaire, France – May 31, 2023 – MSC Cruises, the world’s third-largest and fastest growing cruise line, celebrated a key milestone today in its strategic U.S. expansion and commitment to sustainability with the Coin Ceremony for MSC World America. The event took place alongside the delivery of MSC Euribia at the Chantiers de l'Atlantique shipyard in France and marked a key phase of construction of MSC World America, the brand’s second ship in its innovative World Class and the first ship specifically designed for the U.S. cruise market powered by Liquified Natural Gas (LNG).
The time-honored maritime ceremony saw commemorative coins placed within the keel of MSC World America by two godmothers, MSC Cruises’ Silvia Turbia and Chantiers de l’Atlantique’s Séverine Blandin, as a sign of blessing and good fortune. When she begins sailing from MSC Cruises’ new, state-of-the-art terminal at PortMiami in April 2025, MSC World America will be the brand’s largest ship in North America.
(PRESS RELEASE)_BARCELONA, May 30, 2023 – Carnival Cruise Line has welcomed its first guests to experience “Carnival Fun Italian Style” aboard the cruise line’s latest addition to the fleet, Carnival Venezia, as the ship began sailing in Europe on its way to New York City. The ship departed Barcelona, Spain on a two-week transatlantic Carnival Journeys sailing on May 29 and will arrive to its new homeport at the Manhattan Cruise Terminal on June 13.
Carnival President Christine Duffy greeted the first guests embarking from Barcelona’s cruise terminal onto the ship Monday. Duffy is joining the guests and Carnival’s friendly crew for the first part of the sailing.
(PRESS RELEASE)_PORT TOWNSEND, WA— Race to Alaska is back for year seven with 39 teams registered to depart from the Northwest Maritime Center on June 5. No motors or support allowed—the Race to Alaska (R2AK) is about the physical endurance, saltwater know-how, and the bulldog tenacity that it takes to navigate the 750 cold water miles from Port Townsend, Washington, to Ketchikan, Alaska.
First place wins $10K; second place, a set of actual steak knives. Teams embark on Stage 1, “The Proving Ground,” from Port Townsend, WA on June 5 at 5:00 AM; they have 36 hours to cross the Strait of Juan de Fuca and make it to Victoria, BC. June 8 at high noon marks the start of Stage 2, “To the Bitter End,” the 710-mile trek from Victoria to Alaska.
(PRESS RELEASE)_MIAMI, FL, May 30, 2023 – Oceania Cruises, the world’s leading culinary- and destination-focused cruise line, is proud to announce that Chef Alexis Quaretti, Senior Culinary Director, has been inducted into the prestigious echelons of the Maîtres Cuisiniers de France. Quaretti joins Oceania Cruises’ Vice President of Culinary Eric Barale, who served as Quaretti’s godfather into the program. As such, Oceania Cruises is the only major cruise line to boast two Master Chefs of France.
The association of Master Chefs of France was established in 1951. Its goal is to support and promote French culinary arts around the world. This mission is embodied by the chef members, as they are ambassadors of French cuisine and culture and are responsible for relaying this heritage to their apprentices.
“It’s truly remarkable to have two Master Chefs of France leading our culinary team,” said Frank A. Del Rio, President of Oceania Cruises. “Chef Eric and Chef Alexis are both long-standing members of the culinary team, Eric being one of the first members of Oceania Cruises’ culinary family and Alexis joining us shortly after in 2004. The palpable kinship and passion throughout the culinary team prove that Oceania Cruises not only serves The Finest Cuisine at Sea® but also has the finest culinary team at sea.”
(PRESS RELEASE)_MIAMI, May 30, 2023 – Carnival Cruise Line is introducing a tremendous business growth opportunity for travel advisors through its new Your Winning Plan program. The eight-part event and competition series brings renowned experts in small business and entrepreneurship to help travel advisors build winning business plans to fast track sales and income.
Experts from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and SBA's resource partner, the America's Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network, will provide business advice at each event. As part of the only cabinet-level federal agency dedicated to small businesses, SBA leaders will provide resources to travel entrepreneurs across the country. Advisors will also hear from representatives from the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) and Carnival’s business development team with special training on social media, Carnival booking tools and the importance of developing a strong business plan, including the opportunity to create and enter their business plan in Carnival’s competition to be Your Winning Plan’s champion.
(PRESS RELEASE)_Geneva, Switzerland - May 30, 2023 - MSC Cruises and MSC Foundation announced an innovative partnership today with NatureMetrics, the pioneering nature intelligence and environmental DNA specialists.
The primary goal of this visionary project, named “eBioAtlas: Biodiversity Sampling from Cruise Liners using eDNA,” is to collect comprehensive biodiversity data for marine species using the innovative technique of DNA sampling. By collecting eDNA from seawater while on board and sending it to NatureMetrics for analysis, the team will discover and record the marine wildlife present across MSC Cruises’ routes.
(PRESS RELEASE)_Seattle, Wash., May 30, 2023 — Three Holland America Line ships are set to explore the lush landscapes and natural wonders of Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific in 2024-2025. From unspoiled islands to cosmopolitan cities, Westerdam will spend the season Down Under, while Koningsdam and Zaandam each offer a longer Legendary Voyage to the South Pacific and Hawaii.
In October 2024 Westerdam sails a westwardly South Pacific crossing, followed by the iconic Australia Circumnavigation. From December 2024 through March 2025, the ship offers a series of 14-day departures roundtrip from Sydney, Australia, or between Auckland, New Zealand, and Sydney. Zaandam’s “Tales of the South Pacific” in September 2024 is from Vancouver, Canada, to San Diego, California, or roundtrip San Diego, while Koningsdam’s “Hawaii, Tahiti and Marquesas” in February 2025 is roundtrip from San Diego.
“Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific are iconically beautiful locations, but they have so much more to offer which is why they remain high on the bucket list of travelers who are looking to see the world with the ease of a cruise,” said Beth Bodensteiner, Holland America Line’s chief commercial officer. “The Australia Circumnavigation itinerary is the most in-depth immersion a cruiser can have of the continent, and many of our Legendary Voyages make it possible to visit distant destinations from a North American homeport. These cruises are among some of the most notable we offer.”
Stay current with the latest news from the cruise lines.
Follow Gerry Barker
on All Things Cruise.