Adonia leaves Fathom to return to P&O Cruises and sail discovery itineraries from June 2017

Adonia, the smallest ship in P&O Cruises’ fleet, is coming back to the UK after a brief spell chartered to Carnival Corporation’s Fathom brand, which was pioneering “social impact” cruises to Cuba and the Dominican Republic.
The 700-passenger vessel will be sailing “discovery itineraries” from June 2017, taking in off-the-beaten-track ports of call across Europe, the Mediterranean, Iceland, eastern Atlantic Islands and the Caribbean. 
These include a seven night round-trip tour of Europe’s west coast to the pretty ports of Bordeaux, St Peter Port and Honfleur, and a 14 night Iceland cruise featuring Reykjavik, Isafjordur and Heimaey, plus Killybegs, Klaksvik (Faroe […]

Celebrity Cruises move closer to The Edge

 

The next generation of cruise ships moved from concept to construction this week, with the ceremonial cutting of the first piece of steel for Celebrity Cruises’ newest, and boldest, ship.

The company has been keeping details of the project firmly under wraps, but if the steel silhouette in the picture is anything to go by, the design includes an aggressive cruiser bow, along the lines of the most recent newbuilds from AIDA.

The ship, due to launch in two years’ time, will be called Celebrity Edge. The name of her twin sister, scheduled for spring 2020, has been revealed as Celebrity […]

Cruise lines stir up their plans for 2018

It’s Stir-Up Sunday this weekend, when households traditionally mix their Christmas puddings. Cruise lines are intent on getting us to focus our attention a little further into the future, to 2018.

PRINCESS CRUISES took over a hotel swimming pool in central London last night to announce their biggest-ever season of ex-UK cruises. For the first time, the line will offer more than 1 million bed-nights on sailings to northern and southern Europe.

The 2,700-passenger Sapphire Princess (above), built in Japan in 2004, will make its maiden visit to Europe to sail 16 cruises from Southampton between April and October. Fares from £799 for a […]

Hurtigruten’s new expedition ships are preparing to cruise from Pole to Pole

Hurtigruten has some adventurous plans for the first of its new expedition ships, launching in 2018. In its maiden season the Roald Amundsen, currently under construction, will be heading for the Chilean fjords, Falkland Islands, and Antarctica.
The new Hurtigruten programme also includes a large number of new itineraries and destinations – ranging from exotic jungles to frozen landscapes.
Fram will lead expedition sailings in the Caribbean and along the Atlantic coast of the United States, visiting eight countries along the coast of Central America. Ports of call  include the San Blas Islands, Fort San Lorenzo, Boscas del Toro, Puerto Limón, […]

The Wine Show’s Joe and Amelia bring their expert insight to Celebrity Cruises

Experts from ITV’s The Wine Show are taking to the seas as a result of a partnership with Celebrity Cruises.

The TV series which made its screen debut this year features actors Matthew Good (Downton Abbey) and Matthew Rhys (The Americans) learning more about  the grape from Joe Fattorini – otherwise known as Obi Wine Kanobi – and Amelia Singer.

Celebrity passengers can already choose from 400 different wines and 1,800 bottles are stored in the two-storey wine towers at the centre of restaurants on its Solstice-class ships.

The Wine Show tie-up has added new wines to the list and will result […]

Crystal’s expansion plans are re-drawn … again

Edie Rodriguez’s Crystal ball must be spinning in confusion. Expansion plans for her ultra-luxury cruise line have been torn up and re-written yet again.

She hinted to me that changes were on the way a few weeks ago, when the debut of the first 1,000-passenger Crystal Exclusive ship – originally intended for 2018 – was pushed back to 2021. The delivery date will now be even later, in 2022.

Crystal Cruises’ two existing ocean ships, Serenity and Symphony, will be given extensive makeovers in the meantime. Work will be carried out in 2017 and 2018, similar to past refurbishments, such as […]

Revealed: Sky Dome and Lanai Deck will be key features of P&O Cruises’ newest ship

Passengers will have to wait two years before they can book a holiday on P&O Cruises’ newest ship, and the maiden voyage won’t be until 2020, but the first hints of what the vessel will have in store were revealed last night.

The venue was the spectacular Sky Garden at the top of London’s Walkie Talkie building – appropriately enough for a ship that will have its own Sky Dome, an all-weather entertainment space with a pool and a stage.

The other main feature of the 5,200-passenger ship will be a broad half-mile Promenade – or Lanai Deck – that will […]

Majesty back on course after engine room fire

Cruise ship Thomson Majesty returned to harbour for repairs after fire broke out in the engine room.

The incident occurred on Friday, shortly after the 1,462-passenger vessel had left the port of Livorno, in north-west Italy.

Repairs to the 24-year-old ship were completed yesterday evening and the ship arrived in Barcelona today – although scheduled calls to Calvi and Marseille had to be cancelled.

A Thomson Cruises spokesperson told me: “We can confirm that there was a small fire on board Thomson Majesty when sailing from Livorno to Calvi on Friday evening.  It was immediately contained and extinguished and no passengers or […]

Refit adds steakhouse and new Brigadoon restaurant to Fred. Olsen’s Black Watch

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines are investing millions of pounds in a 26-day dry-dock to keep Black Watch as fresh as the day she was launched in 1972.

The company’s pride and joy – and the first ship that I ever cruised on – will be fitted with new restaurants and bars, and gains an interactive TV system, during an extensive refit to be carried out at the Blohm + Voss shipyard in Hamburg, Germany, next month.

Managing director Mike Rodwell said: “It is important that Black Watch always looks her best. We will be undertaking major upgrades to the cabins and […]

Branson promises the ‘irresistible style’ of Virgin Voyages will change cruising for good

Although Sir Richard Branson has raised about £2 billion to launch a cruise line, he admitted this week that he has yet to set foot on a cruise ship.

He doesn’t even like the word “cruise.” With three years still to go before the first Virgin passenger (or “sailor” as he wants to call them) steps across one of his gangways, he has changed the name to Virgin Voyages.

Fifteen months after first announcing the Virgin brand was taking to the seas, Branson joined his Voyages CEO, Tom McAlpin, at a press conference in Miami to confirm that Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri […]