Friday, June 12, 2015

Eat Your Way through the Mediterranean

Let’s see. What would I rather do in port in the Mediterranean? Ride on a bus to an art museum followed by a folk dance show (in traditional dress) and time for craft shopping at a local artisan’s studio? Or be sampling the local cuisine and even learning how to make it from fresh ingredients I just saw them pick out at the local market? Ding, ding, ding! That’s it. Go no further.

Crystal has a new line of culinary shore excursions to entice passengers’ taste buds away from more traditional sightseeing on shore in the Mediterranean this summer and fall.

The complete story appeared in the June 12 edition of Cruise News Daily

Thursday, June 11, 2015

You’re Really Going Nowhere Now

Carnival Cruise Line said today they would no longer offer cruises to nowhere beginning in 2016 to comply with new US government rules.

The complete story appears in the June 11 edition of Cruise News Daily.

Norwegian Tweaks Dining Package

Get your knife and fork at the ready for this. Norwegian Cruise Line has tweaked the dining package for their specialty restaurants, effective August 7, and it’s much the same as the current “Ultimate Dining Package,” but the new “Specialty Dining Package” also includes the a la carte restaurants.

Another change is that the pricing is no longer based on the length of the cruise, but instead on the number of nights you want specialty dining.

Details appear in the June 11 edition of Cruise News Daily.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Bye Bye, Buffet

Pacific Jewel just debuted P&O’s new concept in Lido eateries. They say it is a game changer, that is, it’s no longer a buffet but instead, it’s the Pantry.

Designed by noted marine architectural firm, Tillberg Design, designer Petra Ryberg-Bid says the Pantry is about eating what you like instead of how much you can eat, and it’s different from any other cruise ship today.

The complete story appeared in the June 10 edition of Cruise News Daily.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Water, Water Everywhere (but don’t bring it aboard)

In an effort to stop the flow of “illegal” alcohol onto their ships Carnival Cruise Line is going to be changing their beverage policy by prohibiting more kinds of nonalcoholic beverages which may be brought aboard by passengers.

The reason is the same as Carnival always gives, that they feel the need to control all alcohol on the ship. They say it is a safety factor and will speed up the boarding process. The unspoken question, however, is always at what point customers, especially ones who are guilty of nothing, will decide the policies are just too intrusive or too much of an affront and will decide to vacation elsewhere (other cruise line or land-based resort).

The complete article appeared in the June 9 edition of Cruise News Daily

Monday, June 8, 2015

20 Years of Kreuzfahrt-ing

There was a big birthday celebration last night aboard AIDAcara. It marks the beginning of AIDA’s 20th anniversary celebration.

Christiane Herzog christened AIDAcara in Rostock on June 7, 1996, and that brought cruising to a new segment of the German market, which is the largest market in Europe.

The complete story appeared in the June 8 edition of Cruise News Daily.

Surprise Picnics

Last week we told you about Celebrity’s new “Grass is Greener” promotional campaign. In an interesting twist, Celebrity is now promoting the promotion.

They sent 400 butlers into New York, Chicago and the San Francisco Bay area to surprise unsuspecting people with taste of Celebrity.

Details appeared in the June 8 edition of Cruise News Daily.

Medevac from Carnival Sensation

The US Coast Guard performed a relatively routine medevac from Carnival Sensation on Saturday as it was sailing about 22 miles off the coast of Palm Beach. The video, however, is remarkable.

The Coast Guard received a call from the ship about 7pm that a 71-year-old man was experiencing stroke symptoms, and an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter was launched from the Coast Guard air station at Miami. Shortly, it was hovering over the cruise ship’s aft deck.

We have some outstanding video thanks to advances in video technology that shows the rescue swimmer being lowered to the deck, and this camera angle gives us some good perspective on the height from which these medevacs are performed.

As usual at first look, they make it look so simple, but as you watch the coordination between the helicopter and ship as it continues to move through the water, you realize the expertise necessary between the pilots of the aircraft and the ship. Still, the Coast Guard considers it all in a day’s work.