NEWS


NEWS


NEWS


What will Richard Branson’s first cruise ship look like?

It’s being launched with all the hullabaloo you’d expect from the Virgin brand and global entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson. It’s the cruise for non-cruisers. The line that will change the game for ever. Scarlet Lady, Virgin Voyages’ first ship, has a tattoo parlour, ‘sailors’ instead of guests, ‘Events & Gigs’ rather than glitzy Broadway shows. But a ticket on the Scarlet Lady doesn’t come cheap.


Starting at about US$3,560 for a 5-night cruise that includes calls to Havana. You’d think though, for that price, you would be having one hell of a trip. And that’s what Virgin Voyages has promised. Wi-fi, for example, is included in the fare; there will be no cover charge for the ship’s 20 restaurants; gratuities are not required; and activities and fitness classes will be complimentary. Alcohol and shore excursions still come at an extra cost. The line also recently revealed new details around its ‘Events & Gigs’.


The Scarlet Lady will offer six original shows that include “interactive dance parties and off-the-wall participatory acts”. While there will be no cruise director, Virgin Voyages will have a range of entertainment pros that include choreographers and producers as well as theatre and circus performers.

What will Richard Branson’s first cruise ship look like?

It’s being launched with all the hullabaloo you’d expect from the Virgin brand and global entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson. It’s the cruise for non-cruisers. The line that will change the game for ever. Scarlet Lady, Virgin Voyages’ first ship, has a tattoo parlour, ‘sailors’ instead of guests, ‘Events & Gigs’ rather than glitzy Broadway shows. But a ticket on the Scarlet Lady doesn’t come cheap.


Starting at about US$3,560 for a 5-night cruise that includes calls to Havana. You’d think though, for that price, you would be having one hell of a trip. And that’s what Virgin Voyages has promised. Wi-fi, for example, is included in the fare; there will be no cover charge for the ship’s 20 restaurants; gratuities are not required; and activities and fitness classes will be complimentary. Alcohol and shore excursions still come at an extra cost. The line also recently revealed new details around its ‘Events & Gigs’.


The Scarlet Lady will offer six original shows that include “interactive dance parties and off-the-wall participatory acts”. While there will be no cruise director, Virgin Voyages will have a range of entertainment pros that include choreographers, producers as well as theatre and circus performers.

NEWS


When is the best time to buy your cruise?

They're questions that we all ask before handing over our credit card details: Are we getting the best deal? Should I have booked earlier? Should I wait? Is now the right time to book my cruise?


Cruisewatch, an American based price-monitoring website, has just revealed its latest report, which details when in 2018 was the best time to book cruise for maximum savings.


It turns out that the biggest discounts of up to 59 per cent are found within 70 days prior to departure for major cruise lines. In the US, cruisers were finding that they were getting more than half the cost off sailings on Holland America Line, Norwegian Cruise Line and Princess Cruises when booking within a week before sailing. Meanwhile, the best deals on Carnival Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean and Azamara Club Cruises were found 8-10 weeks out.


In the American cruise market, prices are known to be much more competitive than in the Asian market. But Gareth Evison, Cruise1st’s Product and Offline Marketing Manager, says that there are similarities.


“If you don’t care when you travel, where you travel to, and there are no flights involved you can often get a better deal closer to departure,” says Mr Evison.

He also adds that the lines that offer the biggest discounts are “very similar to the report”.


Cruisers are less like to see big discounts on lines such as Royal Caribbean and Carnival which have prices that are “good from day one”.


Bargain hunters should keep an eye on lines like Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises and Celebrity Cruises as they often have higher launch fares that gets reduced later.


“If you are wanting to go during school holidays you have to book early or you simply won’t get a deal. There also aren’t many three- or four-berth cabins. If you are a family or large party again book early to save disappointment,” says Mr Evison.

When is the best time to book your cruise?

They're questions that we all ask before handing over our credit card details: Are we getting the best deal? Should I have booked earlier? Should I wait? Is now the right time to book my cruise?


Cruisewatch, an American based price-monitoring website, has just revealed its latest report, which details when in 2018 was the best time to book cruise for maximum savings.


It turns out that the biggest discounts of up to 59 per cent are found within 70 days prior to departure for major cruise lines. In the US, cruisers were finding that they were getting more than half the cost off sailings on Holland America Line, Norwegian Cruise Line and Princess Cruises when booking within a week before sailing. Meanwhile, the best deals on Carnival Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean and Azamara Club Cruises were found 8-10 weeks out.


In the American cruise market, prices are known to be much more competitive than in the Asian market. But Gareth Evison, Cruise1st’s Product and Offline Marketing Manager, says that there are similarities.


“If you don’t care when you travel, where you travel to, and there are no flights involved you can often get a better deal closer to departure,” says Mr Evison.

He also adds that the lines that offer the biggest discounts are “very similar to the report”.


Cruisers are less like to see big discounts on lines such as Royal Caribbean and Carnival which have prices that are “good from day one”.


Bargain hunters should keep an eye on lines like Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises and Celebrity Cruises as they often have higher launch fares that gets reduced later.


“If you are wanting to go during school holidays you have to book early or you simply won’t get a deal. There also aren’t many three- or four-berth cabins. If you are a family or large party again book early to save disappointment,” says Mr Evison.

NEWS


Royal feasts coming to Dream Cruises

Dream Cruises’ signature culinary program, Taste the Dream – Wine and Dine at Sea, returns this year with two internationally renowned celebrity chefs. Titled “A Taste of the Palace”, the program will feature tasting menus by chefs Darren McGrady and Ivan Li. Chef McGrady was the former British Royal Family chef to Queen Elizabeth II and Diana, Princess of Wales, as well as Prince William and Prince Harry. Chef Li, of Family Li Imperial Cuisine, hails from a family of imperial high court officials who served the Qing dynasty in China.


The chefs will be making their debuts on board Genting Dream and World Dream. Chef McGrady will share some of the Royal Family’s most-loved dishes, including Princess Diana’s favourites: tomato and dill mouse, stuffed aubergine with a roasted rosemary bell-pepper sauce, and bread and butter pudding. Chef Li will be making delicacies such as Tofu of Jade – a green-pea mash created especially for Empress Cixi − and Chinese-style Leopard coral grouper confit, a slow-cooked fish course.

Royal feasts coming to Dream Cruises

Dream Cruises’ signature culinary program, Taste the Dream – Wine and Dine at Sea, returns this year with two internationally renowned celebrity chefs. Titled “A Taste of the Palace”, the program will feature tasting menus by chefs Darren McGrady and Ivan Li. Chef McGrady was the former British Royal Family chef to Queen Elizabeth II and Diana, Princess of Wales, as well as Prince William and Prince Harry. Chef Li, of Family Li Imperial Cuisine, hails from a family of imperial high court officials who served the Qing dynasty in China.


The chefs will be making their debuts on board Genting Dream and World Dream. Chef McGrady will share some of the Royal Family’s most-loved dishes, including Princess Diana’s favourites: tomato and dill mouse, stuffed aubergine with a roasted rosemary bell-pepper sauce, and bread and butter pudding. Chef Li will be making delicacies such as Tofu of Jade – a green-pea mash created especially for Empress Cixi − and Chinese-style Leopard coral grouper confit, a slow-cooked fish course.

NEWS


Hurtigruten’s ship of the future

It will eventually be fuelled by fish. It’s already a hybrid. And when it travels in the Polar regions it will run silently on batteries. Welcome to the future of cruising. We are all more conscious of our effect on the environment – many of us carry reusable coffee cups to work or shy away from single-use plastic straws at the pub.


Now, Norwegian cruise line Hurtigruten has launched a ship called the Roald Amundsen that appears to match those aspirations. It is the first hybrid-powered cruise ship in the world, propelled by electric motors and internal combustion engines – not dissimilar to the Toyota Prius.


The new ship will cater for over 500 passengers and has an ice-strengthened hull which will be used when she sails the Arctic region. But instead of having dance floors and swimming pools on board, Hurtigruten prides itself on the fact that Roald Amundsen will host naturalists and lecturers to educate guests about conservation, as well as six battery packs to power the ship.


There will be no plastic cups on board and if guests wish for their stateroom not to be cleaned, they can simply hang a sign that says “Green Stay” on their doorknob. The money saved on detergent, water, etc is then donated by Hurtigruten to a good cause or charity.

Hurtigruten’s ship of the future

It will eventually be fuelled by fish. It’s already a hybrid. And when it travels in the Polar regions it will run silently on batteries. Welcome to the future of cruising. We are all more conscious of our effect on the environment – many of us carry reusable coffee cups to work or shy away from single-use plastic straws at the pub.


Now, Norwegian cruise line Hurtigruten has launched a ship called the Roald Amundsen that appears to match those aspirations. It is the first hybrid-powered cruise ship in the world, propelled by electric motors and internal combustion engines – not dissimilar to the Toyota Prius.


The new ship will cater for over 500 passengers and has an ice-strengthened hull which will be used when she sails the Arctic region. But instead of having dance floors and swimming pools on board, Hurtigruten prides itself on the fact that Roald Amundsen will host naturalists and lecturers to educate guests about conservation, as well as six battery packs to power the ship.


There will be no plastic cups on board and if guests wish for their stateroom not to be cleaned, they can simply hang a sign that says “Green Stay” on their doorknob. The money saved on detergent, water, etc is then donated by Hurtigruten to a good cause or charity.

NEWS


Princess Cruises
rolls out new entertainment

Princess Cruises is bringing avant-garde fashion and classic rock together in its new musical theatre production, Rock Opera, debuting on Sky and Enchanted Princess. Rock Opera has been created exclusively for Princess Cruises. The show will be brought to life by special guest America’s Got Talent rock tenor Brian Justin Crum and Australian dancer Emma Sammut.


Rock Opera takes our guests on a musical journey, featuring our eight-piece live orchestra playing iconic rock songs,” says Denise Saviss, Princess Cruises’ Vice President of Entertainment Experience.


“Our production and costume-design team were inspired by one of New York City’s most glamorous evenings of the year, the Met Gala,” says Ms Saviss.


Sky Princess and Enchanted Princess guests should anticipate an unforgettable evening of music that transcends language and celebrates the diversity of our crew and guests from around the world. Rock Opera features songs in English, Spanish, Latin and a Princess first – sign language.”

Princess Cruises rolls out new entertainment

Princess Cruises is bringing avant-garde fashion and classic rock together in its new musical theatre production, Rock Opera, debuting on Sky and Enchanted Princess. Rock Opera has been created exclusively for Princess Cruises. The show will be brought to life by special guest America’s Got Talent rock tenor Brian Justin Crum and Australian dancer Emma Sammut.


Rock Opera takes our guests on a musical journey, featuring our eight-piece live orchestra playing iconic rock songs,” says Denise Saviss, Princess Cruises’ Vice President of Entertainment Experience.


“Our production and costume-design team were inspired by one of New York City’s most glamorous evenings of the year, the Met Gala,” says Ms Saviss.


Sky Princess and Enchanted Princess guests should anticipate an unforgettable evening of music that transcends language and celebrates the diversity of our crew and guests from around the world. Rock Opera features songs in English, Spanish, Latin and a Princess first – sign language.”

NEWS


Top Hat on Cunard

Luxury cruise line Cunard and SilverBlue Entertainment will launch the musical Top Hat exclusively on board Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria this September. 


Winner of three Laurence Olivier Awards including Best New Musical, Top Hat is a romantic comedy set in the 1930s Hollywood Golden Age and is known for its dazzling costumes and set design as well as iconic tap dancing.


The show is based on RKO’s 1935 motion picture of the same name and features music and lyrics by famed American composer Irving Berlin. 

The musical will be performed at sea for the first time exclusively on Cunard, premiering in the Royal Court Theatre on board Queen Victoria September 3 and Queen Elizabeth September 17. The story follows Jerry Travers, a man who dances his way across Europe on a legendary voyage to win the heart of society girl Dale Tremont.


Top Hat perfectly matches the Frank Matcham-style theatres on board Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth, which complements this visually outstanding show perfectly,” says Matthew White, the production’s original stage show director. White also co-adapted the stage script from the film and is now assisting with adapting the show for its at-sea debut.


For more information about Cunard visit www.cunard.com

Top Hat comes to Cunard

Luxury cruise line Cunard and SilverBlue Entertainment will launch the musical Top Hat exclusively on board Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria this September. 


Winner of three Laurence Olivier Awards including Best New Musical, Top Hat is a romantic comedy set in the 1930s Hollywood Golden Age and is known for its dazzling costumes and set design as well as iconic tap dancing.


The show is based on RKO’s 1935 motion picture of the same name and features music and lyrics by famed American composer Irving Berlin.  The musical will be performed at sea for the first time exclusively on Cunard, premiering in the Royal Court Theatre on board Queen Victoria September 3 and Queen Elizabeth September 17. The story follows Jerry Travers, a man who dances his way across Europe on a legendary voyage to win the heart of society girl Dale Tremont.


“Top Hat perfectly matches the Frank Matcham-style theatres on board Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth, which complements this visually outstanding show perfectly,” says Matthew White, the production’s original stage show director. White also co-adapted the stage script from the film and is now assisting with adapting the show for its at-sea debut.


For more information about Cunard visit www.cunard.com

NEWS


Star Clipper sails Bali and Borneo

Star Clippers, the line which operates historic sailing ships, is offering a Bali-to-Bali itinerary which includes Lovina Beach in the north of Bali, where the sands are volcanic and black.


The journey visits Senggigi beach on Lombok and the island of Gili Sudak. Undoubtedly, one of East Java’s most iconic landmarks is Mount Bromo – a 2,329-metre volcano which forms part of the Tengger Semeru National Park and offers unparalleled natural beauty. A hiking tour up the side of the mountain and around the 10-kilometre wide inner caldera will take your breath away. 


The line’s Borneo Westbound itinerary to Singapore includes Kinabalu National Park in Sabah, the cultural hub that is the Malaysian waterfront city Kuching in Sarawak, and finally bustling Singapore.

Star Clipper sails Bali and Borneo

Star Clippers, the line which operates historic sailing ships, is offering a Bali-to-Bali itinerary which includes Lovina Beach in the north of Bali, where the sands are volcanic and black.


The journey visits Senggigi beach on Lombok and the island of Gili Sudak. Undoubtedly, one of East Java’s most iconic landmarks is Mount Bromo – a 2,329-metre volcano which forms part of the Tengger Semeru National Park and offers unparalleled natural beauty. A hiking tour up the side of the mountain and around the 10-kilometre wide inner caldera will take your breath away. 


The line’s Borneo Westbound itinerary to Singapore includes Kinabalu National Park in Sabah, the cultural hub that is the Malaysian waterfront city Kuching in Sarawak, and finally bustling Singapore.

NEWS


Cunard dedicates cruise to Elizabeth Taylor

Elizabeth Taylor, the striking, raven-haired actress known for her glitz and glamour, also led an extravagant lifestyle. In 2011, the sale of some of her jewels sold for US$116 million at a Christie’s auction.


Now, Cunard is giving her fans an opportunity to also own some of her prized possessions. Cunard, in partnership with House of Taylor and celebrity auction house Julien’s Auctions, will be hosting a dedicated cruise to the late star on the Queen Mary 2 in October from Southampton to New York.


The ‘Property from the Lifestyle of Elizabeth Taylor’ exhibition on the ship will include items like a beaded leather Versace bike jacket she wore on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, a gilt-bronze lamp from 1901, an emerald-green silk Givenchy pantsuit as well as art and décor.


The actress’s personal items will later be auctioned off in Beverly Hills in December.

Cunard dedicates cruise to Elizabeth Taylor

Elizabeth Taylor, the striking, raven-haired actress known for her glitz and glamour, also led an extravagant lifestyle. In 2011, the sale of some of her jewels sold for US$116 million at a Christie’s auction.


Now, Cunard is giving her fans an opportunity to also own some of her prized possessions. Cunard, in partnership with House of Taylor and celebrity auction house Julien’s Auctions, will be hosting a dedicated cruise to the late star on the Queen Mary 2 in October from Southampton to New York.


The ‘Property from the Lifestyle of Elizabeth Taylor’ exhibition on the ship will include items like a beaded leather Versace bike jacket she wore on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, a gilt-bronze lamp from 1901, an emerald-green silk Givenchy pantsuit as well as art and décor.


The actress’s personal items will later be auctioned off in Beverly Hills in December.