Archive for the ‘Thomson Cruises’ Category

Thomson Cruises To Rebrand

October 11, 2017

(Courtesy Thomson)

Thomson Cruises will be re-branded and will become ‘Marella Cruises’ for the UK market.

Marella means ‘shining sea’ in Celtic.

The Mein Schiff 1, which was set to transfer to Thomson as the TUI Explorer next year, will now be named the Marella Explorer.

Other ships will get similar name changes, as the TUI Discovery 1 and 2 will become the Marella Discovery 1 and Marella Discovery 2.

There is also a deployment change for winter, 2018: the company will offer an Asia program sailing from Bangkok aboard the Marella Discovery.

For the first time in the company’s history, two ships will be based in Barbados for winter 2018. Marella Explorer will sail its first ever winter season from the Bajan paradise and will be joined by Marella Celebration, operating established itineraries,

Sister travel company ‘Thomson’ will also be re-branding later this month, moving to one aligned, global brand as TUI.

(Thomson)

Malcolm says: I like the Thomson product, but I do not like the new name.  It rhymes with ‘Marbella’ and ‘Piella’, so it sounds like a Spanish cruise line to me. Maybe it’s meant to be ‘exotic’?

Thomson is a very powerful brand and they need to be careful that they are not throwing the baby out with the bath water.

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Tui Discovery To Homeport In Southampton

August 4, 2017

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Thomson Cruises’ ship ‘Tui Discovery’ will homeport in Southampton, for the first time next year as part of its 2018 programme.

The 35,000-tonne ship is ex-Royal Caribbean’s ‘Splendour of the Seas’, built in 1996. She carries 2,000 passengers and will homeport at Southampton form September 2018, operating four new itineraries – Fantastic Fjords, Baltic Treasures, European Experience and Seeking the Northern Lights.

More details of the itineraries will be available on the Thomson web site in due course.

Talk Of Newbuilds For Thomson

TUI Group’s Chief Executive Friedrich Joussen has said Thomson Cruises may be the next cruise expansion project for the travel company, which also operates Hapag-Lloyd Cruises and TUI Cruises.

Joussen said that Thomson has older ships, and that they were looking at moving to the “TUI model” – which could include building new ships for Thomson.

TUI Cruises, aimed at the German market, started with two ex-Celebrity ships before building new ships.

Thomson Choose ted.

Thomson Cruises announced that UK-based ‘The Entertainment Department’ (ted) will be providing all entertainment on board TUI Explorer and the yet-to-be-named addition, currently sailing as Mein Schiff 2, for the German market.

With a specially-created modern package of entertainment shows and attractions, the ted offering will be ready for launch on board TUI Explorer (currently Mein Schiff 1) from May 2018, providing a balanced mix of contemporary entertainment designed to suit customers of all ages.

The content includes original theatre shows, light entertainment, musicians and children’s concepts, all of which embrace the latest technologies such as virtual reality and interactive screens.

(Thomson)

Malcolm says: You can see a slide-show of TUI discovery in her former guise of RCI’s ‘Splendour Of The Seas’: HERE

Thomson Spirit Gets A Reprieve

July 5, 2017

(Courtesy Thomson)

Thomson Cruises’ Thomson Spirit, will sail a year longer than initially planned.

The ship, Thomson’s longest serving, was due to leave the fleet in November, but will now sail until the end of summer 2018.

Spirit will be based in Palma in April 2018 before moving to Malaga in May 2018.

The decision was a result of ‘overwhelming popular customer demand’.

(Thomson)

Malcolm says: I’ve not cruised on Spirit, but I have her near-identical sister ‘Celebration’. She is a charming ‘smaller’ ship.

Thomson Celebration Review HERE:

Shrinking Ships

May 12, 2015
Not quite what I meant!

Not quite what I meant!

Have you noticed that when some ships get refitted, some public rooms disappear and additional cabins appear in the same location?

Now the cruise lines call this “an enhanced choice of accommodation”.

Well, it is only an advantage to the people who book those cabins. What about the hundreds of passengers who loose a public room or two. What about the fact that then ship will become more crowded with extra passengers from the extra cabins.

Adding more cabins is of course a method of making a ship more profitable. Even a handful of additional cabins, must generate a significant income, when viewed over a five year period. Let’s not forget those extra passengers (2+ per cabin) will also spend extra money on-board.

Losing public rooms is quite common on older/smaller ships. However even bigger/more modern ships can suffer from this unpleasant fate.

RCI’s ‘Freedom of the Seas’ (2006) had many new cabins added in her recent re-fit, including 19 in the space that was the ‘Crypt’ discotheque.

One loss of a public room which personally upset me, is the cinema on-board the ‘Thomson Celebration’

Now I do enjoy a dedicated cinema on-board a ship, but they are becoming increasingly rare. New ships just do not tend to have purpose built cinemas. It’s become too much of a luxury. It does not generate income.

Modern ships occasionally use the main Theatre for movies, have a big screen on deck or expect you to watch movies on you cabin TV – sometimes even pay-per-view.

(Thomson Spirit - Click to enlarge)

Thomson Spirit, with cinema (Click to enlarge)

(Thomson Celebration, 6 cabins replace cinema)

Thomson Celebration, 6 cabins replace the cinema.

Thomson Cruises are a prime example:

‘Spirit’ and ‘Celebration’ (ex Holland America Line) were identical ships. Both had charming dedicated cinemas. However in a recent refit, Celebration lost hers. It was replaced with six cabins (see deck plans above).

Fortunately Celebration’s sister ship, ‘Thomson Spirit’ still retains her original cinema, but for how long?

Malcolm

Thomson Celebration Review HERE: