Seabourn Encore Delivered

December 2, 2016

(Courtsey of Seabourn)

The handover ceremony of the Seabourn Encore took place om 30 Nov. 2016 at the Marghera shipyard, in Venice.

The ceremony was attended by Micky Arison, Chairman of Carnival Corporation, Richard D. Meadows, President of Seabourn Cruise Line and Arnold Donald, CEO of Carnival Corporation, while Fincantieri was represented by the Chairman, Giampiero Massolo and the CEO, Giuseppe Bono.

The ship is 40,350 tons and 210 meters long, with a cruising speed of 18.6 knots for 600 guests.

(Source Unknown)

(Source Unknown)

Encore will be officially christened at a ceremony in Singapore on January 7, 2017. International recording artist and world’s best-selling Soprano, Sarah Brightman, will be godmother of Seabourn Encore and officially name the ship during the celebration. The vessel will then depart on its Inaugural Voyage, the 10 day Gems of the Java Sea cruise, bound for Indonesia.

Seabourn Encore will spend summer 2017 in the Mediterranean, with numerous itineraries.


Fincantieri Floats Out MSC Seaside

November 27, 2016

MSC Cruises floated out of its newest and largest ship on 26/11/16, at the Fincantieri shipyard in Italy.

The 5,200-passenger ship, which will enter service in December next year and will be based year-round in Miami and sail Caribbean itineraries.

The 160,000-ton ship will be joined by a sister, MSC Seaview, in June 2018, with an option on a third in 2021.

Each ship has been especially designed for warm climes, and will feature an outdoor promenade filled with shops, bars and alfresco dining.

There will be 463,000 square feet of public space, including panoramic elevators.


Viking Line Newbuild

November 26, 2016

Viking Line has announced it has signed a letter of intent with the Xiamen Shipbuilding Industry Co. to build a passenger vessel for delivery in the spring of 2020. The new vessel will serve the Turku (Finland)-Åland Islands (Finland)-Stockholm (Sweden) route.

The vessel is intended to be a collaborative project, and the plan is to engage a number of Finnish and other European supplier.

The 63,000-ton vessel will be 218 metres in length with capacity for 2,800 guests, and the length of its cargo lanes will be 1,500 meters.

Viking Line will hire Scandinavian architects for the interior design.

“Our intention is for the vessel to run on liquefied natural gas (LNG). We have excellent experience with this from the M/S Viking Grace, the first large LNG-powered passenger vessel in the world”
said Jan Hanses, Viking Line’s CEO.

(Viking Line)

Carnival’s Fathom Cruise Line Discontinued

November 25, 2016
P&O's Adonia, now 'Fathom'.

P&O’s Adonia, now ‘Fathom’.

P&O Cruises’ much loved small ship Adonia — which has been sailing as Fathom in Cuba and the Dominican Republic — will return to the fleet in summer 2017.

Carnival Corp. gave no specific reason why the line was ceasing except that other cruise lines in the organisation now offer similar experiences. Earlier this month, the group announced the excursions pioneered by Fathom in the Dominican Republic will be available on all of the group’s other lines including P&O Cruises.

See Cruise Critic article HERE

Malcolm says: Very few commentators though that Fathom’s business model would be successful. Personally I felt that the project  was probably a loss-leader. Maybe it was  a vehicle to  forge links with the Cuban authorities, in order to get a ‘foot in the door’ in terms of US ships visiting Cuba…or am I being too cynical?  What is your opinion?

The mysterious Celebrity Edge

November 24, 2016

Blogger Tom Burke provides some interesting insight (or should I say speculation) about the ‘mysterious’ Celebrity Edge:

Tom's Cruise Blog

Project EDGE will deliver small ship itineraries with large ship amenities

Celebrity Edge (which I don’t think I’ve mentioned before today) is a class of ship, an individual ship, and a concept. It’s also shrouded in deep mystery….

The concept appeared  in December 2014 when Celebrity Cruises announced that they would be building two new ships in a completely new class, the Edge class. There are very few details about these ships. We know their dimensions: at 300m (914 feet) long, 38m (123 feet) wide and with a tonnage of 117,000, the new ships will be very slightly smaller than the original Solstice class ships and also differently proportioned – shorter, wider, and possible higher. But no further information was given, and the design of the ship is all rumours.

One rumour that’s apparently gained some traction is that the ships won’t feature a main dining room in the traditional…

View original post 443 more words

Steel Cut For Celebrity Edge

November 22, 2016


The STX shipyard in France, has cut the steel for Celebrity’s 2018 newbuild, which is named ‘Celebrity Edge’. This will be the first of four Edge-class vessels for the brand. The second ship in the class, which will follow in 2020, will be named ‘Celebrity Beyond’.

The ships will 117,000 gross tons and carry 2,900 passengers.

“Edge Class is destined to be a trailblazer in modern luxury travel,” said Richard D. Fain, Chairman and CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd. “The new ships will be on the cutting edge of innovation and the leading edge of design, so the ship names are spot on and offer a sense of how Celebrity Cruises is looking into the future.”

The company will delivery of Celebrity Edge in Fall 2018. Celebrity Beyond is scheduled for delivery in Spring 2020, and the third and fourth Edge Class ships (unnamed) in Fall 2021 and Fall 2022, respectively.

(Celebrity Cruises)


Is this the real silhouette? (STX/Celebrity)

Malcolm says: New cruise ships from the major players are nearly always shrouded in secrecy these days. All we know about the Celebrity newbuilds are their names, delivery dates, gross tonnage and lower berth passenger capacity.  What they look like on the  inside and on the outside, and what the facilities on-board will be are unlikely to be revealed until to much later on.

I wonder if the silhouette above is real? Is so what is the square in front of the funnel?

Celebrity Equinox Review: HERE

P&O “Bring The Outside In”

November 20, 2016

In case you missed the big story:

Construction of the latest addition to the fleet will get underway next year at Meyer Werft’s Papenburg shipyard in Germany. The ship will enter service in the UK in 2020. At 180,000 tons, it will have a capacity for up to 6,600 guests, making it the largest cruise ship ever built for the British market.

P&O’s latest slogan is to “bring the outside in”. In keeping with this idea, the signature heart of the ship, the Atrium, will be our boldest and brightest yet. Glass walls spanning three decks will let natural light flood in while a grand staircase, gallery and overhead walkways will provide dramatic focal points.

P&O 180,000 gt

P&O Newbuild (Courtesy of P&O)

The ship will also be the most environmentally efficient ship in the history of P&O Cruises. Powered at sea and in port by liquefied natural gas (LNG), exhaust emissions will be significantly reduced to help protect the environment.

You’ll be treated to the best British hospitality and standards of service that you know and love.

A major new entertainment hub called The Dome will be one of the star attractions of our new ship. Featuring an impressive glass roof, a pool with a retractable stage, a water feature and whirlpools, it offers a unique space whatever the weather.

P&O 180,000 gt Newbuild

Prom deck with hot tubs. (Courtesy of P&O)

By day, The Dome is the perfect place for entertainment, relaxation and informal dining. By night, the four key entertainment spaces come alive with aerial performances, roof projections and immersive shows.

There will also be much wider than normal, half-mile promenade deck, called the “Lanai” deck, allowing for al-fresco dining.


Southampton 2020

I wonder how Southampton will accommodate the new P&O ship in 2020?

The as yet unnamed ship will be able to accommodate up to 6,600 passengers, a world record! Surely none of the existing terminal buildings will be big enough.
Plus other increasingly bigger ship will occasionally be in port at the same time.
If you expand the terminal buildings, the local roads will still be inadequate – they are now, when multiple ships are in port.
Southampton will need a major overhaul in terms of it’s infrastructure.

Royal & Sapphire Princess to Homeport in Southampton, 2018

November 18, 2016


Princess Cruises has revealed that Royal Princess — christened in Southampton by the Duchess of Cambridge in 2013 — will return to the U.K. in 2018 to mark the ship’s fifth anniversary.

See full Cruise Critic article: HERE

Malcolm says: This is interesting news. P&O’s Britannia is of course essentially the same ship as Royal Princess and will operate form Southampton for part of 2018. However they are both Carnival brands, so whichever one you might choose, Carnival win.  Carnival also own Cunard as well, providing a third Carnival-brand choice form Southampton..

Sarah Brightman – Seabourn Encore’s Godmother

November 16, 2016
(Source Unknown)

(Source Unknown)

The world’s best-selling soprano Sarah Brightman has been chosen to be the godmother of Seabourn Encore on January 7th, 2017, in Singapore.

Brightman will preside over a glittering evening celebration attended by passengers and crew before the ship sails on a 10-day maiden voyage bound for Indonesia.

Brightman launched her career with the British dance troupe Hot Gossip in the late 1970s. In 1981, she made her West End musical theater debut in ‘Cats,’ and went on to star in several West End and Broadway musicals, including originating the role of Christine Daaé in ‘The Phantom of the Opera.

Brightman furthered her musical career and has sold more than 30m albums worldwide. Brightman is the first artist to have been invited to perform the theme song at the Olympic Games, twice. The first was at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics and the second at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.


Thomson Expands Caribbean Program

November 15, 2016
TUI Discovery (Courtesy TUI)

TUI Discovery (Courtesy TUI)

Thomson Cruises has unveiled its winter 2017 programme which sees long-haul destinations as the focus. There will be more Thomson ships based in the Caribbean than ever before.

From November 2017, Thomson Celebration will be moving to its new homeport of La Romana, in the Dominican Republic, meaning for the first time in its history, Thomson Cruises will have three of its ships based in the Caribbean.

All-inclusive ships TUI Discovery and new addition TUI Discovery 2, will join Thomson Celebration to will sail out of Bridgetown, Barbados and Montego Bay, Jamaica respectively.

Thomson Celebration’s move to the Dominican Republic means Thomson Cruises customers now have opportunities to team their cruise holiday with a beach stay. The addition of the tropical island retreat also means new itineraries, with Coral Islands and Caribbean Gems calling at exotic hotspots such as St Lucia, Grenada and Antigua, as well as lesser known gems like St Maarten and Martinique.

Guatemala’s port Santo Tomas de Castilla is introduced on new itinerary Exotic Explorer on TUI Discovery 2, as well as Nassau in The Bahamas as part of the repositional itinerary Atlantic Discoveries. The number of Cuban Fusion sailings on the new ship will also be increased, giving customers more chance to explore Havana during its overnight stop.

TUI Discovery will sail new itineraries Tropical Horizons and Seven Isles from Barbados, which include new ports of call of St Thomas in the US Virgin Islands and San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Direct Thomson Airways flights will now be available to the Caribbean from East Midlands, Doncaster Sheffield, Cardiff, Glasgow, Newcastle and London Stansted airports, joining existing flights from Birmingham, Manchester and London Gatwick.


Thomson Celebration review: HERE

MSC first World Cruise

MSC Cruises has announced its first-ever world cruise, which will depart on the MSC Magnifica from Genoa on Jan. 5 2019, and sail for 119 days, calling at 49 ports in 32 countries.  Staterooms are now on sale.