Oceania Cruises has announced the departure
of its president, Bruce J. Himelstein. Effective immediately Kunal S. Kamlani
will serve as Oceania Cruises president, with direct responsibility for the
sales, marketing and brand management functions, in addition to his current
responsibilities as president and chief operating officer of the lines parent
company, Prestige Cruise Holdings. "We thank Bruce for his contributions
to Oceania during his tenure with us," said Frank J. Del Rio, chairman and
chief executive officer for Prestige Cruise Holdings. We wish him well in his
future endeavours,’ Oceania Cruises said in a statement.
Royal Caribbean International’s Splendour
of the Seas enters into the Navantia ship yard in Cadiz, Spain to begin a
five-week long, $35 million dry dock where she will receive an array of new
“The revitalisations are part of the Royal
Advantagethe lines commitment to offer
vacationers the world’s most innovative cruise ships, exciting itineraries to
popular destinations, and world-renowned friendly and engaging Gold Anchor
Service,” Royal Caribbean said in a statement.
Included in the new amenities on Splendour
of the Seas will be new dining venues: Chops Grille, Izumi, the Boardwalk Dog
House, Chefs Table and the Park Café; the Royal Babies and Tots Nursery, a
Diamond lounge for Crown and Anchor loyalty guests, a Concierge Lounge for
suite guests and upgraded technology throughout.
In addition the ship will receive 124 new
balconies and a host of new stateroom amenities including flat panel
televisions. Other features being added to Splendour of the Seas include
ship-wide WIFI, a digital way finding system, electronic mustering and an
outdoor movie screen. Other enhancements to the ship will be announced in the
Upon completion of the refurbishments on
November 25, Splendour of the Seas will sail a transatlantic voyage from
Lisbon, Portugal to her seasonal homeport of Sao Paulo (Santos), Brazil. From
there she will offer a variety of South American itineraries that take
advantage of the summer season in Brazil.
Cunard Line will send its flagship, the
151,400 gross ton Queen Mary 2, for a two week refit in Germany at the end of
nrxt month. Peter Shanks, President and Managing Director of the Southampton
based company, describes in his blog what will be done on the ship that entered
service in early 2004.
“Well in late November Queen Mary 2 will be
taken out of service, and out of the water, for a planned refit in Hamburg,
Germany. She will be out of service for 14 days. I have had a number of
questions on the blog as to what we plan to do during that time. We will
release that news later this week – but I promised to reveal the news through
our blog first so – here goes;
Staterooms – We will refurbish every
stateroom on board Queen Mary 2 – all 1,310 of them. Each of the Queen’s Grill
Grand Duplex, Master and Penthouse Suites will receive a fresh individual
design. All of our Queen’s Grill Suites, Princess Grill and Britannia
Staterooms will receive new carpets, curtains, bedcovers, linen and some will
also see new soft furnishings. The designs will be very much in keeping with
the current designs and with the overall ship – but with a fresh look. I am
really pleased with how they will look and our returning loyal guests will I am
sure be delighted. I have always recognised just how important it is to feel
comfortable in your stateroom – a home from home. The designs on Queen Mary 2
are very enduring and when the ship returns to service in December her
staterooms will be more appealing and comfortable than ever.
Golden Lion Pub – our guests have worn the
Pub out. The Pub lunches are more popular than ever, the bar area is always
busy and sport and musical events are increasingly popular. So we have
completely redesigned this room. Below are a couple of shots of how the new Pub
will look. It recreates the best of British Pubs as well as the comfortable
American Country Club feel. We will achieve more comfortable seats and more of
them. We will have new and improved screens for sporting events and we will
still be able to have our famous Jazz evenings and daytime activities.
Canyon Ranch – goes from strength to
strength on Queen Mary 2. One of the highlights of our Canyon Ranch is the wet
area and Spa Pool. Well we are completely refurbishing the teak surrounds of
the pool and doing a lot of work in other areas of the spa. We will have a
range of new exercise machines in the gym area and some new and improved
features in the salon. Canyon ranch are one of our most prized partnerships –
when it comes to health, relaxation, exercise and wellness – they are the real
thing and I am so pleased we are investing in further improving the facilities.
Commodore Club – one of the most iconic bar
locations at sea up on deck 9 forward. No radical changes here – but as you can
see form the design layout below we are investing in new carpets and
refurbishing and adding to our beautiful white leather furniture.
Children’s Club – one of Cunard’s best keep
secrets.We have excellent facilities –
but although they were industry leading in 2004 it is time for us to invest
further in the facilities. We will refurbish the area, including the very
latest in electronic gaming and entertainment – I am looking forward to trying
them out for myself.
Sir Samuel’s – Originally designed when the
ship came into service as a venue to offer the very best in classic wines. The
advent of Cappuccinos, Lattes and Espresso has changed our approach and the
room is very busy day and night. So time for new carpets and some new chair
covers which will give the room a real lift.
Grill Restaurants – We will lay down a new
carpet design for both the Queen’s Grill and Princess Grill Restaurants. These
will be very much in keeping with the overall design but I think will give a
lighter feel to both restaurants – which remain amongst the best restaurants at
sea or on land.
One area that I have received questions on
is Kings Court – the equivalent to The Lido area on Queen Elizabeth and Queen
Victoria. Given its location, and the fact that it covers such a large area
with many sections – some of our guests have in the past found the area can be
quite confusing – especially the first time you visit it.
To make significant changes to the actual
structure of this area would be very difficult and prohibitively expensive
given it’s scale. So we have been tackling this in different ways. We have been
looking carefully at customer flow, our food and beverage offering and in
particular how we best manage the service in Kings Court. We have plans to
increase the alternative dining opportunities and themed evenings, and removing
possible confusion by not having too many different serving stations at
breakfast. This has significantly improved the situation and we will continue
to focus here and make sure we create the appropriate experience for our
Lidl, the German discount retailer that has
operations around Europe, will start to sell cruises, hotel accommodation and
flights in the near future, the German current affairs magazine Focus says on
Lidl will book large numbers of cabins, and
hotel rooms for next summer and later perhaps seats on flights as well and then
retailer them to its customers at discounted prices.
The company’s travel offerings will be
available in catalogues at more than 3,000 retail units around Europe, the
An significant construction milestone occurred Thursday when the keel for the new Royal Princess was laid in the building dock at the Fincantieri shipyard in Italy. As the keel -- the bottom most part of the ship – was ceremoniously lowered into position, Princess Cruises and shipyard officials marked the occasion with a celebration and countdown to the ship’s debut in spring 2013.
Following a traditional blessing by a priest, the ship’s keel - which weighs approximately 500 tons - was moved into position by a huge crane onto the keel blocks. The computer-guided maneuver took only minutes, belying the more than 2 million man hours that will ultimately go into building the vessel.
The 3,600-passenger, 141,000-ton ship will remain in the building dock until its float-out. Royal Princess will launch in spring 2013.
"It’s always very exciting to mark this step in a ship’s construction, when several of the pre-built sections come together to form a new addition to our fleet, especially with a prototype design," said Alan Buckelew, president and CEO of Princess Cruises who traveled to Italy for the ceremony. He explained that Royal Princess’ evolutionary design will feature some exciting new elements and expanded spaces, while featuring the classic profile and features passengers have come to associate with Princess.
Giuseppe Bono, CEO of Fincantieri said "The keel laying in the building dock marks a fundamental step in the construction of “Royal Princess”, an innovative prototype ship for one of the most prestigious brands of Carnival Corporation, the world cruise leader, for which Fincantieri built many vessels in the past.We are particularly proud and strongly believe that Fincantieri will build the most beautiful ship in the world."
One of the most dramatic new design elements of Royal Princess is an over-water SeaWalk – a glass-bottomed enclosed walkway extending more than 20 feet beyond the edge of the vessel. From here passengers will enjoy dramatic views off the side of the ship and to the sea below. On the ship’s opposite side, an over-water SeaView bar will also extend over the waves to provide cocktails and unbeatable vistas.
On her top decks, Royal Princess will feature a new adults-only pool surrounded by seven plush private cabanas that appear to be floating on the water Two additional pools will flank a tropical island that will offer pool seating by day, and by night will become an outdoor dance club, complete with a dazzling water and light show. Princess’ signature adults-only haven, The Sanctuary, will be expanded both in size and amenities. The popular poolside theater, Movies Under the Stars, will play a starring role mid-ship with an expanded size and high-definition viewing.
Royal Princess will feature an expanded version of the company’s signature Piazza – the ship’s central atrium incorporating a myriad of dining, entertainment and retail experiences. And each of the vessel’s outside cabins will include a balcony, meaning 80 percent of all staterooms will offer this popular feature. Additional details about the ship will be released over the coming months, and a video preview of Royal Princess is available athttp://www.princess.com/learn/ships/rp/index.html