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Cruise Lines Weekly Focus - WEEK 15

Here the developments for the world's leading Cruise Lines...

---------- WEEK 15 ----------

Cruise & Maritime Voyages is delighted to announce the arrival of the latest addition to our fleet, Vasco da Gama
Vasco da Gama is the sixth ship to join the CMV fleet as we celebrate 10 years in operation. Her maiden voyage sails from Singapore to London Tilbury 22 April. At 55,820gt the new ship can accommodate 1,220 passengers in 630 cabins including 120 balcony cabins and 29 suites. Following the explorer theme of the fleet, the ship is named after Portuguese explorer, Vasco da Gama, famous for being the first European to reach India by sea. Following in the footsteps of the famous explorer, her maiden voyage sails from Singapore via India to London Tilbury. Vasco da Gama’s maiden voyage sails on a spectacular 43-night voyage calling in Malaysia, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Cochin for tours to the Taj Mahal, Goa and Mumbai, Oman, Egypt, Jordan, Transit the Suez Canal, Israel, highlights of the Mediterranean, Morocco and Portugal arriving in London Tilbury. Highlights include; the beautiful beaches of Malaysia and Thailand, the Taj Mahal in India, the lost city of Petra from Jordan, shrines to ancient Pharaoh’s in Egypt, some of the holiest sites on earth in Israel, the eternal city of Rome and the souks in Marrakech. Vasco da Gama will spend the summer cruising from Germany and sail from London Tilbury 9 October on a 53-night voyage to Australia calling in Barbados, the Panama Canal, Acapulco, islands of the South Pacific, Auckland concluding in Sydney, Australia, where she will cruise for the winter season. The new ship offers a wider choice of restaurants and dining options. A first for CMV, Vasco da Gama will offer flexible dining and timings will not be restricted to specific sittings. Vasco da Gama was fully refurbished in 2015 and is having new livery painted and revised signage, plus some technical work completed before sailing from Singapore.

Source: Cruise & Maritime Voyages

Oceania Cruises Introduces New Plant-based Cuisine
Oceania Cruises unveiled the most extensive and creative plant-based menus at sea as their latest OceaniaNEXT innovation. Remaining at the forefront of culinary development, the cruise line is featuring more than 200 new healthy menu selections.

Source: Late Cruise News

MSC Cruises unveiled the striking look of its double terminal (AA and AAA) on the eastern end of PortMiami, which will be capable of handling a pair of 7,000-passenger ships simultaneously
'This will be a landmark for Miami,' MSC Cruises executive chairman Pierfrancesco Vago said Tuesday at a Seatrade Cruise Global news conference on the exhibition floor. 'We needed our home in Miami, a big brand, the capital of cruising.' Since MSC will be deploying such large ships from the port, 'We wanted to created a seamless process,' Vago said.

Aerodynamic lines, sculptural super-long (1,600-foot)roof facility has aerodynamic lines inspired by Italian yacht design, and transparent sides. The roof will be a monumental sculpture, eye-catching to planes flying overhead, residents of high-rises and passengers on the upper decks of their ships, said Bernardo Fort-Brescia, principal of Arquitectonica, the Miami firm selected to design the facility. The design, he said, is fluid. It keeps people moving within a single space, instead of parking in a remote garage and having to cross a road. The terminal will have 350,000 square feet of interior space and 2,000 parking spaces, all under one roof. Taxis, Ubers and buses will drop people at one area, while passengers who drive their own cars will go into the garage where they'll drop their luggage and proceed to check-in hands-free.

The terminal will increase the number of passengers at PortMiami by 1m per year, Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Giménez said. He called the deal with MSC, which is financing the project, a record-setting collaboration between a cruise line and the port, which will generate $1.5bn over the 50-year term of the deal.

Source: Seatrade Cruise New

The Philippines Supreme Court has reinstated the case against an official of Sulpicio Lines over the 2008 sinking of its ferry Princess of the Stars
She capsized on June 21, 2008, off the coast of San Fernando, Romblon, at the height of Typhoon Frank, which passed directly over Romblon as a Category 2 storm. Of the 849 persons on board, only 32 survived, 227 died and 592 were reported missing. The Supreme Court reversed a Court of Appeals dismissal of the reckless imprudence case against Edgar Go, Sulpicio Lines' first vice president and team leader of its crisis management committee. It has been asserted that should have canceled or discouraged the voyage considering the severe weather, but Go countered that such a decision was within the authority of the captain of the vessel, in coordination with the Coast Guard. However, the Supreme Court ruled that there was support for reckless imprudence as Go failed to monitor the movement of the vessel and instruct the captain to take shelter. It noted that Go's acts were not malicious but showed an inexcusable lack of precaution. According to an account given by four survivors, who managed to swim to nearby Sibuyan Island, passengers had been told to put on life jackets at 11:30am, and 15 minutes later, the captain gave the order to abandon ship. The ship began to list at around midday. The survivors witnessed many people jumping into the water, many not wearing life jackets. The ferry capsized at 1:00pm.

The official inquiry undertaken by the Philippines Board of Marine Inquiry found Sulpicio Lines and its captain liable for the tragedy. Its final report blamed human error, and ruled that the ship's missing and presumed dead captain, Florencio Marimon, "miscalculated" the risk of continuing the trip to Cebu despite the stormy weather. According to the report: "The immediate cause of the capsizing of MV Princess of the Stars was the failure of the Master to exercise extraordinary diligence and good seamanship thereby committing an error of judgment that brought MV Princess of the Stars in harm's way into the eye of Typhoon Frank ... The shipping firm is found negligent for its failure to exercise its duty in ensuring that they transport passengers and cargo safely to (their) destination."

Source: The Maritime Executive

Ponant Takes Delivery of Le Bougainville
Le Bougainville, the 3rd ship in its Ponant Explorers series, delivered exactly on schedule. The vessel left Sovik, Norway in the morning of April 8, and is currently sailing to Spain to begin her maiden voyage on April 15 from Malaga. Le Bougainville will be officially inaugurated on June 4. Combining an intimate size with 92 staterooms and suites, all with a private terrace or balcony, refined design, sleek lines, cutting-edge technologies, and respect for the environment, Le Bougainville is the symbol of the new generation of cruise ships flying the French flag. As with all vessels in the Ponant Explorers series, Le Bougainville is fitted with the world first “Blue Eye”. The multi-sensorial underwater salon allows guests to experience the underwater world through a couple of portholes in the form of a cetaceous eye that is looking out onto the seabed, hydrophones integrated into the keel to retransmit the natural symphony of the deep water, non-intrusive underwater lighting, and Body Listening sofas, offering a sensorial listening experience by corporal resonance.

Source: Cruise Mapper

Mystic Names World Explorer in Portugal
In a ceremony in Viana do Castelo, Portugal, Mystic Invest Chairman Mário Ferreira and singer, songwriter, supermodel, French former-First Lady, and ship’s Godmother Carla Bruni-Sarkozy christened World Explorer as Mystic Cruises’ first ocean cruise ship. “Portugal has a rich maritime history and we are very proud that World Explorer is the first luxury cruise ship to be built here. We are further honored to have Ms. Bruni-Sarkozy as the ship’s godmother,” said Ferreira. “Active and adventurous travelers will delight in sailing with the new Mystic Cruises, which will exemplify Mystic Invests’ more than 25 years’ experience in innovating travel and tourism.” Captains Alex Zakalashnnyuk from Russia, Filipe Sousa from Portugal, and Terje Willassen from Norway will master the new World Explorer and bring more than 75 years of combined experience aboard the 9,300-gross-tonnage, 200-guest World Explorer. Two more ships, the World Navigator and World Voyager will follow in 2020 from Portugal’s WestSea Viana Shipyard.

Source: Cruise Industry News

AmaWaterways confirmed it will add a newbuild riverboat to its fleet in Europe on July 1, 2020 - AmaSiena
The 156-passenger ship will sail a variety of 7-, 10- and 11-night itineraries, visiting historical villages, iconic cities, and spectacular vineyard regions along the Danube, Rhine, Main, and Moselle rivers. The new AmaSiena will have 78 staterooms, the majority with exclusive twin balconies featuring panoramic views from both an outside and French balcony. She will also offer 4 suites (350 ft2 / 32.5 m2), 6 pairs of connecting staterooms as well as 12 triple occupancy staterooms specifically designed for multi-generational families. Other amenities include a heated swimming pool with a swim-up bar on the Sun Deck, a fitness room, classes led by a trained Wellness Host, a fleet of bicycles, massage and beauty salon services. Passengers can also enjoy complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi, Entertainment-On-Demand, “Sip & Sail” happy hour. After her debut in July 2020, AmaSiena will offer a variety of popular itineraries. Highlights include 10-night Rhine & Moselle Delights and 11-night Rhine & Moselle Fairytales itineraries between Amsterdam and Basel that allow guests extended time ashore to explore the Middle Age castles and vineyards that line the banks of Moselle river.

Source: Cruise Mapper

Seabourn unveils first stunning public spaces on new ultra-luxury purpose-built Expedition Ships
Seabourn has given travelers their first glimpse of select public spaces on its two new ultra-luxury purpose-built expedition ships set to launch in June 2021 and May 2022, respectively.

Source: Cybercruises

Celestyal Cruises has announced it is taking its program west in the fall of 2020 for six departures into the Adriatic visiting seven new destinations in Italy, Montenegro, Croatia and Greece
The new Adriatic itineraries will all be onboard the Celestyal Olympia as the company builds up toward year-round deployment. “Our new, 2020 Adriatic itineraries, combined with the recent launch of the ‘Eclectic’ and ‘Three Continents’ itineraries in 2019/2020, represents 33 additional weeks of operation, bringing us even closer to our objective of sailing year-round and offering our guests even more choices of destinations throughout the Aegean, Mediterranean and now the Adriatic,” said Chris Theophillides, CEO. ”We are thrilled to be visiting these new destinations at less crowded and congested times of the year to provide our guests with a much better experience and a chance to explore the magical Christmas markets and take a deeper dive into the cultural, culinary and historic treasures that these destinations offer.”The itinerary consists of four seven-night cruises departing Venice, Italy on December 5, 12, 19 and 26 and calling on Corfu and Patras, Greece, followed by Kotor in Montenegro and Dubrovnik and Split in Croatia, with fares starting at $999 per guest. Dubrovnik will also be available for guests as an embarkation port.

There will be two positioning cruises, the first on November 30 with a five-night cruise starting in Athens and ending in Venice, calling on Katakolon and Corfu in Greece, Kotor, Montenegro and Dubrovnik, Croatia. A seven-night cruise will also depart on January 2, 2021 from Venice with an overnight stay and ending with an overnight stay in Athens along with calls in Dubrovnik, Croatia, Kotor, Montenegro, Corfu and Katakolon, Greece. Fares start at $839 per guest. The move into the Adriatic follows Celestyal’s recent launch of its new “Eclectic Aegean” itinerary starting in October, 2019, which takes the line back to Istanbul and introduces guests to Volos, Greece, for excursions to the mountains of Meteora, and to Canakkale, Turkey, for excursions to Troy and Gallipoli. Celestyal also recently launched its “Three Continents” this December, with five sailings calling at Alexandria and Port Said, Egypt, at Ashdod, Israel, at Kusadasi (Ephesus), Turkey, at Limassol, Cyprus, and at Rhodes in Greece.

Source: Cruise Industry News

Antarctica21 has announced its new 2020-2021 expedition schedule with 40 air-cruises this season
Joining the company’s fleet of expedition vessels and aircraft, the new M/V Magellan Explorer will make its maiden voyage on November 28, 2019. “With the introduction of Magellan Explorer, we now have a modern vessel custom-designed for our unique Antarctic fly and cruise operations,” says Jaime Vasquez, Antarctica21’s Chairman of the Board. “We have operated air-cruise travel to Antarctica since 2003 and this new ship is the culmination of our extensive experience in this field.”

Source: Cruise Industry News

Azamara Club Cruises Launches 15 New AzAmazing Evenings
Exclusive to Azamara, AzAmazing Evenings are unique to each location and feature local talent and performances, and in many occasions hosted in historic venues, including The Odeon of Ancient Ephesus in Turkey and The Solìs Theatre in Uruguay. “Committed to our award-winning Destination Immersion programming, we are constantly looking for new and enhanced experiences ashore to deliver authentic travel moments to our guests, while immersing them with the local culture, food, and people,” said Larry Pimentel, President and CEO of Azamara Club Cruises. “From Oman to China, Spain to Australia, each AzAmazing Evenings event is tailored to the destination and allows guests to more intimately connect with the local culture.”

Source: Travel Pulse

Windstar Cruises revealed more news about its $250 Million Star Plus Initiative
At a press conference today, the Seattle-based cruise line’s President John Delaney, revealed 360-degree “views” and renderings of what guests will experience on the line’s three renovated vessels, Star Breeze, Star Legend, and Star Pride. Delaney was joined by Giorgio Rizzo and Lawrence Zammit, respectively Fincantieri Services Executive Vice President and Vice President Merchant Market Strategies and Sales for partnered shipbuilder and ship conversions specialists Fincantieri. The Star Plus Initiative is the most complex and comprehensive small ship lengthening, engine replacement, and renovation project in cruising, Windstar said. “This is the biggest investment and expansion in Windstar Cruises’ history," said Delaney. “The investment of a quarter of a billion dollars ensures to our loyal and future guests, and industry partners, that these ships will continue to sail for generations and deliver on their promise of visiting the smaller ports and waters of the world that our brand is known for. We are all proud to be part of this historic event in the small ship cruise industry."

Windstar will take half of its fleet – Star Breeze, Star Legend, and Star Pride – and renovate each ship in succession. Work on the ships begins in October 2019 and ends in November 2020. The total capacity of the expanded ships will be 312 guests.

Source: Cruise Industry News

Family Feud Live™ Takes To The High Seas With Debut On Carnival Cruise Line's Mardi Gras; Survey Says - It's Gonna Be Fun!
Carnival Cruise Line today announced it will debut the seagoing version of the iconic TV game show Family Feud™ as part of the entertainment lineup on the highly anticipated Mardi Gras, when it enters service in 2020. An exclusive partnership with Fremantle, Family Feud Live aboard Mardi Gras will feature the same format and signature set as the TV show. Two five-person teams will battle it out in rounds including Face Off and Fast Money by naming the most popular answers to survey questions for a chance to win a host of prizes in a high-energy gameplay. "Carnival Cruise Line is all about fun, family and friends just like Family Feud," said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. "As we continue to build Mardi Gras'diverse entertainment lineup, we are excited about offering this iconic game show onboard and involving our guests in a great new way to Choose Fun."

Source: Market Watch

---------- WEEK 14 ----------

Bernhard Schulte Cruise to provide technical management for Karnika

Bernhard Schulte Cruise Services (BSCS) has been awarded technical management of Indian start-up Jalesh Cruises’ new vessel, Karnika(formerly Pacific Jewel). The 70,285gt, Crown Princess-class cruise ship is presently undergoing comprehensive refurbishment at Sembcorp Marine Admiralty Yard in Singapore prior to entering service from Mumbai, India in mid-April 2019. The 2,000 passenger capacity ship will be named at a gala event in Mumbai on April 19. Karnika will operate cruises from India and Dubai for the duration of 2019.

Dedicated domestic cruise operation
Jalesh Cruises is promoted by Amit Goenka of Essel Group, a multi-billion-dollar Indian conglomerate company with interests in media, entertainment and tourism, and has recently received a US$10m investment from a wholly-owned subsidiary of Delta Corp Limited, India’s largest casino gaming company. The Indian cruise business has been conceptualised by experienced cruise veteran Jurgen Bailom, president & ceo of Zen Cruises, who has spent the past twelve months developing the onboard cruise product that includes unique entertainment formats, itineraries and shore excursion programmes.

Bernhard Schulte Cruise Services will be exhibiting on stand 2287 at the upcoming Seatrade Cruise Global taking place between April 8-11, in Miami.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News

Europa 2 debuts Australia’s west coast in 2021

The west coast of Australia is a new addition to Europa 2’s 2020/21 itineraries recently announced by Hapag Lloyd Cruises. Other cruises will head for the Mediterranean, western and northern Europe, the Caribbean, Oceania, Asia and across the Indian Ocean to Africa. Fashion, art, sport and music enthusiasts can also choose from a range of themed formats.

Western Australia premiere
On the maiden Western Australian 16 day route in January 2021, guests can look forward to sandboarding in the desert, seeing giant red tingle trees in the Valley of the Giants and experience encounters with dolphins, emus and koalas. The cruise starts in Melbourne, calling at Adelaide, Kangaroo Island and Albany, Australia’s oldest town, Busselton in the Margaret River wine region, followed by Fremantle (Perth), Geraldton and Exmouth. The cruise end in Bali, after several sea days.

Themed cruises
A FASHION2NIGHT themed cruise is scheduled for a Hamburg to Kiel, via the Kiel Canal and Copenhagen May, 2020 sailing and an eight-day FASHION2SEA cruise from Lisbon to Mallorca from July 30 to August 7 2021.

ART2SEA in South Africa
In 2021, the ART2SEA cruise heads to South Africa – taking guests from Cape Town to Namibia, Port Elizabeth, Durban, Mossel Bay and back to Cape Town. Guests will gain insights into the international art world and visit exclusive exhibitions, galleries and museums. Art experts will be on hand to share their expertise.

On Europa 2 UNPLUGGED cruises in the Mediterranean in August 2020 and Western and northern Europe guests in July 2021 singers and songwriters Heather Nova and Simon Webbe will provide an acoustic set in the ship’s theatre.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News

Costa Cruises is increasing its number of calls to Valletta in 2020

The announcement was made on aboard Costa Fascinosa in Valletta this week for 32 round trip Malta cruises operated from late March to early November 2020. Costa Cruises is a long standing caller to Valletta bringing over 474,000 passenger movements on circa 200 calls between 2014 and 2018.

A return after four years
Stephen Xuereb, CEO of Valletta Cruise Port and COO of Global Ports Holding, commented, ‘We are pleased that after an absence of four years, Costa will be re-introducing calls in Q3 of 2020. This means that in 2020, we will be welcoming around 110,000 passenger movements aboard a total of 37 calls as compared to 38,000 passenger movements aboard 18 calls in 2019.’

The Hon. Konrad Mizzi, Minister for Tourism highlighted that the cruise industry positively impacts the local economy, being comprised of a cluster of activities and subsectors.

Vision 2025
More than 800,000 passenger movements are expected be hosted by Valletta Cruise Port in 2019. He highlighted that the Ministry together with the participation of stakeholders is actively working on a ‘Vision 2025’, a new strategy for the tourism industry including the cruise sector, which will be finalized by end of year.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News

American Jazz is the name of 2020 modern riverboat

American Cruise Lines is calling the third new vessel in its modern riverboat series American Jazz. Due in 2020, it follows this year's American Harmony and 2018's American Song.

Slightly larger
American Jazz will be slightly larger than both of those vessels, and it will feature the same advanced, patent-pending opening bow and retractable gangway seen on American Song and American Harmony. Already well under construction at Chesapeake Shipbuilding in Salisbury, Maryland, American Jazz is on schedule to begin cruising the Mississippi next year.

Fleet of five planned
American Cruise Lines plans a total of five modern riverboats. In 2019, while work is under way on American Jazz, sister ship American Song is sailing on the Columbia and Snake rivers and American Harmony is scheduled to begin service on the Mississippi in August. In addition to the modern-style riverboats, American fields Victorian-style paddlewheelers and coastal vessels. Itineraries span the coastal and inland waterways of New England, Alaska, the Pacific Northwest, the Mississippi River system and the Southeast.

River Cruising Round Table
Charles Robertson, chairman and CEO, American Cruise Lines, is a panelist on the 'River Cruising Round Table,' April 9 at Seatrade Cruise Global.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News

V.Ships Leisure to provide more Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection services

V.Ships Leisure is partnering with The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection to provide a tailored suit of management services related to the sourcing of qualified deck, engine and hotel crew, marine procurement, compliance support with maritime rules and regulations, and technical support.

These partner services will be implemented on the first of three yachts planned for The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection fleet. This first one, currently under construction at Hijos De J. Barreras Shipyard in Vigo, Spain, is scheduled to enter service in February 2020. As earlier reported, V.Ships Leisure has been assisting the start-up cruise line with port operations for the past year.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News

Big news from Mystic Cruises

Mystic Cruises is set to name its first ocean-cruise new build, World Explorer, during star-studded festivities Saturday night in Portugal with supermodel, singer and songwriter Carla Bruni as the godmother. But the company isn't stopping there.

Seatrade Cruise Global announcement
Portuguese entrepreneur Mário Ferreira's venture is building a series of expedition ships and opening a US office, as earlier reported, however more news about his US market endeavor is coming during Seatrade Cruise Global. Ferreira put Douro River cruising on the map and is constructing his ocean ships at WestSea Viana.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News

---------- WEEK 14 ----------

 Celebrity Summit Debuts Following Celebrity Revolution

The Celebrity Summit is ready to be introduced following her Celebrity Revolution refurbishment earlier this month, part of a fleetwide $500 million upgrade program. The Celebrity Summit now has completely redesigned staterooms and suites; the addition of The Retreat for suite guests, with exclusive new sundeck and redesigned lounge; reimagined restaurants, bars and lounges and a fully redesigned spa and casino. Celebrity Summit is one of the most popular ships in the Celebrity Cruises fleet and we’re excited to share the revolutionized design with the world,” said Lisa Lutoff-Perlo, President and CEO, Celebrity Cruises. “Celebrity Summit is better than she’s ever been – with modernized spaces and exciting new experiences, and she’s the first of our ships to feature our partnerships with American Ballet Theatre and Chef Daniel Boulud. Nearly every space on Celebrity Summit has been modernized, with attention paid to the smallest detail,” said Brian Abel, Senior Vice President, Hotel Operations, Celebrity Cruises. “We couldn’t be more proud of the work that our teams have done for Summit’s ship’s ‘Revolution’ and the months of hard work leading up to this moment. The Celebrity Summit transformation began on February 17, 2019, in Freeport, Grand Bahama, and lasted 31 days. Staterooms saw an all-new stateroom design in partnership with HBA and refreshed suite design by Kelly Hoppen as well as Celebrity’s eXhale bedding featuring Cashmere mattresses. In addition, the cruise line completely redesigned stateroom bathrooms, with state-of-the-art finishes and fixtures. A total of 30 new staterooms, including 13 new AquaClass Staterooms, seven new Ocean View Staterooms and 10 new Inside Staterooms were added to the ship. Notable public space changes include an all-new exclusive open-air hideaway known as The Retreat Sundeck for suite guests designed by Hoppen, featuring a new hot tub, cabanas, loungers, artwork, and more. There is also The Retreat Lounge formerly Michael’s Club an exclusive 24/7 lounge for suite guests designed by Hoppen, offering complimentary beverages, gourmet bites and concierge service

Source: Cruise Industry News

Regent Doubles Bandwidth, Adds More Amenities

Regent Seven Seas Cruises today announced it is nearly doubling internet bandwidth size across its fleet by January 2020. Guests will begin to benefit from bandwidth expansion starting April 2019, the company said. Signing on to Wi-Fi will be smoother through a login web page that appears when guests connect to the ship’s network, and guests will have a more streamlined login process enabling unlimited complimentary and effortless web surfing. The company is also adding free unlimited valet laundry service for guests sailing in Master and Grand Suites. All guests who sail in a Master Suite or Grand Suite on the cruise line’s ships will enjoy the added benefit of free unlimited valet laundry service starting in April 2019. A new Digital Guest Survey will help Regent track guest experiences and feedback in real-time. The digital survey replaces end-of-cruise paper guest satisfaction questionnaires. Guests may easily provide feedback through this web-based questionnaire during the voyage and the feedback is automatically sent to the ship’s officers and company leaders in Miami. This new system will be deployed fleetwide by October 2019. Nearly doubling bandwidth provides Regent guests with an even faster and easier free internet experience to stay in touch and share their travel experiences with their family, friends and business associates at home while sailing around the world,” said Jason Montague, Regent Seven Seas Cruises president and chief executive officer. “Across our fleet we continue to refine the small details, such as creating a faster internet, including free valet laundry service for Master and Grand Suite guests, and deploying a tool for real-time guest feedback. This significant investment demonstrates our commitment to providing guests with an unrivaled experience.

Source: Cruise Industry News

Steel cutting ceremony for Saga’s Spirit of Adventure

A steel cutting ceremony has been held for Spirit of Adventure, Saga Cruises’ second newbuild and sister ship to Spirit of Discovery, launching in July. The event took place today at Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, marking the start of construction for the 999-passenger vessel. Spirit of Adventure is due to start sailing from Dover in August 2020. Today marks a special moment in Saga Cruises’ history – the first steel-cutting of Saga’s second purpose-built cruise ship, Spirit of Adventure,' chief operating officer Nigel Blanks said.

Interior designed by AD Associates- Spirit of Adventure’s bold and contemporary look is being masterminded by British design agency AD Associates. Spirit of Adventure will be a 58,250gt vessel measuring 774.3ft in length with a beam of 102.4ft. She will sail from Dover in August 2020 with itineraries featuring the Norwegian Fjords, the Caribbean and the Mediterranean.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News

China's Wenzhou is to welcome its largest cruise ship

The southern Chinese city Wenzhou is to have three homeport cruises by Costa Atlantica this year, starting April 12. It is the largest cruise ship to call at Wenzhou. Wenzhou International Cruise Port launched trial operation in December 2017 and commenced official operation in August 2018. Currently, the port has one cruise berth that can accommodate ships up to 100,000gt, with a designed annual passenger handling capacity of 220,000 people.

East China ports- Currently, there are two cruise ports in Zhejiang province, including Wenzhou International Cruise Port and Zhoushan Archipelago International Cruise Port. Wenzhou, close to Shanghai, aims to develop itself to be a major cruise port in the East China region as part of its short-term development plan.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News

After years away, Costa ships are coming back 'home' to Genoa

Costa Fortuna's call in Genoa today marked a return to regular service from the port by Costa Cruises. The 3,470-passenger ship is due to depart Genoa every Friday until Nov. 8 on one-week western Mediterranean cruises. Costa plans a total of 40 calls in 2019, including 34 by Costa Fortuna and three other ships in the spring and fall, expecting to generate a total of 170,000 passenger movements.

Forty calls in 2020, too- Calls in 2020 have already been confirmed, as well. Costa Fortuna will be replaced by the 3,78-passenger Costa Pacifica, which will make its inaugural call on March 23, and then return to Genoa every Friday until Nov. 13. Forty calls are planned, with a slight increase in the passenger count given the larger vessel. For Costa Fortuna and Costa Pacifica this will be a real homecoming in that both were built by Fincantieri at Sestri Ponente and introduced in Genoa. We are particularly glad and proud, after so many years, to celebrate the return of a Costa ship that will now call regularly at Genoa,' Costa president Neil Palomba said. 'This return completes our presence in the city, where we have operated through our head office for over 70 years, and is a starting point for the future.

Plan to build new cruise terminal - Palomba reiterated the plan to build a new cruise terminal in Genoa and said work continues with local institutions to identify the best solution. The new Genoa terminal will add to the Palacrociere terminal in Savona, our main homeport, where we are making significant investments, and La Spezia where, together with other companies, we have been awarded a preliminary contract to manage cruise services and build a new terminal,' Palomba added. He thanked Liguria Region President Giovanni Toti, Genoa Mayor Marco Bucci and Western Ligurian Sea Port Authority President Paolo Emilio Signorini for their support. The return of Costa Cruises to the port of Genoa is one of the signs that demonstrate the rebirth of our city,' Bucci said. 'Despite the problems we had to face recently, our development process does not stop and considers the cruise industry and tourism both essential to show all the capabilities and beauty of our city in the world. I am proud to witness such an important return to Genoa.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News

Hagen apologizes for Viking Sky, investigation support is pledged

Chairman Torstein Hagen apologized to passengers and thanked crew and rescuers as Viking Cruises pledged full support for investigations into the incident that left Viking Sky temporarily without power in stormy seas off the coast of Norway over the weekend.

Ten remain in hospital - As of Monday morning, 10 people were still hospitalized, down from the 20 who were treated shoreside for what Viking over the weekend called 'non-life-threatening' injuries. The past few days have been stressful and hectic for both guests and crew alike. I would like to personally apologize for what our guests experienced,' Hagen said. I would also like to say how impressed and grateful I am for the efforts of the national rescue services, rescue personnel, local authorities and the people along the Møre coast, and thank them for the concern and generosity they have showed our guests,' he continued.

Crew are acknowledged- Further, Hagen thanked Viking Sky's crew for their 'efforts and dedication.' After Viking Sky lost power at 2 p.m. local time Saturday, a helicopter airlift evacuated 479 people. The crew eventually were able to anchor the ship and subsequently to restore power. Escorted by two offshore supply ships and a tug, Viking Sky made its way to Molde, where it has been docked since Sunday afternoon. Most passengers have disembarked- The majority of the passengers have disembarked or are in the process of leaving the vessel and are traveling back to their homes. Viking Cruises said it will continue to follow up with them to ensure their needs are covered. We have already begun our own internal investigation and our goal is to establish a complete and thorough understanding of what happened, and we welcome the investigations that have been launched, and will fully support them,' the company said in a statement 1,373 passengers and crew- Some 915 passengers and 458 crew were aboard the ill-fated cruise. The 47,800gt Viking Sky entered service in 2017. It was deployed on a new winter Arctic program, 'In Search of the Northern Lights,' which began in January. The March 27 cruise, 'Scandinavia & the Kiel Canal,' has been canceled. The company does not anticipate any additional cancellations at this time.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News

Storylines Releases New Ship Renderings

Storylines, a residence ship start up, has released new ship renderings of the M/V Narrative, calling it the largest private residence at sea. The company said the ship, which it will acquire second hand but did not name, would be entering an Italian shipyard this January (2020) for an extensive refurbishment. The MV Narrative will undergo a massive refurbishment, her transformation integrating everything you love about home into your new Home at Sea," the company said. There will be 630 condos aboard, according to company documentation, with an "incredible amount of outdoor space, natural light and casual elegance. An initial purchase of the vessel combined with monthly assessments allow for the largest and most affordable residential development afloat," the company said on its website. "We commit to a life expectancy of the ship being approximately 21 years from the time of her conversion into a residential vessel. Once this time frame is close to expiry, Storylines will liquidate (sell) the vessel, and will take steps to proportionally distribute the collected proceeds between the resident owners. Pricing starts at $299,000 and an average entry price of $475,000 including monthly fees.

Source: Seatrade Cruise News
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