Azamara Pursuit To Join Two Sisters – Cruising To Chicago In 2020 – Silver Spirit To Be Stretched To 691 Feet

The Cruise Examiner for 2nd October 2017

chicago-navy-pier

Chicago’s Municipal Pier, opened in 1916, and known as Navy Pier since 1927, no longer greets cruise ships

Last week Azamara Club Cruises announced that it was acquiring the newest of the eight “R” class ships, thus giving it a fleet of three sister ships. She will be named Azamara Pursuit. Still in the all-inclusive arena, Silversea has announced that it will lengthen its Silver Spirit so as closely to approximate the size of its flagship, the Silver Muse and her planned sister ship Silver Moon. The Azamara Pursuit and lengthened Silver Spirit will both be delivered in March 2018. Meanwhile, Hapag-Lloyd’s Hanseatic Inspiration and Ponant’s Le Champlain are due to be introduced to the Great Lakes in 2020, and pre-bookings can now be made with both lines. But the question arises as to where they will berth in Chicago.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                     (See previous columns)

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Canada’s 150th Anniversary and Montreal’s 375th – Other Cruise News: – Oceania Chooses New York – Azamara Adds Alaska In 2019

The Cruise Examiner for 3rd April 2017

QM2 at Quebec

Queen Mary 2 at Quebec. The numbers cruising the St Lawrence are expected to exceed 350,000 this year.

This year sees the 150th Anniversary of Canada’s founding as a nation, so on this event we also look back fifty years to the special 100th Anniverary sailings that were offered in connection with Expo ’67 in 1967 that included stays on board. Ships such as the Shalom, Maasdam, FranconiaArgentina, Brasil and South American all offered stays at Montreal, as did the s.s. France and Michelangelo at Quebec.This year will also see a boom for cruising the St Lawrence, with traffic up more than a third on last year. Elsewhere, Oceania Cruises will be basing its Insignia at New York for the late summer this year as well as the summer of 2018. Finally, in a first for the line, Azamara Club Cruises has announced a series of eleven Alaska cruises based on Vancouver for its Azamara Quest in 2019.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                    (See previous columns)

Australians Outstrip Canadians In Their Own Port of Montreal

Montreal’s cruise season opened in May with Haimark Line’s 210-berth Saint Laurent (below) and closed last week with the Regent’s 490-berth Seven Seas Navigator.

The 210-berth Saint Laurent. In this pic she is moored in Montreal

In all, Montreal recorded 73 cruise ships visits this year, 29 more than the 44 received in 2014. Preliminary figures indicate that more than 92,000 passengers and crewmembers transited the cruise terminal this season, a near 30% increase over 2014 and a 94% hike since the creation of the Montreal Cruise Committee in 2011. The committee was established with a brief to attract more international cruise lines to the Canadian port.

The St Lawrence River cruise season generally runs from May through October, with the busiest months being September and October, for the autumn leaves. According to data collected by the Montreal Cruise Committee, clients are primarily American (72%), Australian (8.5%), Canadian (7.5%) and English (4.5%).

Like Quebec, Montreal has adopted a bad habit of counting crew members along with passengers. The cruise lines regard crew as a cost centre and passengers as the revenue centre. If we take a ratio of say 2.5 passengers to every crewmember, then 92,000 represents about 66,000 passengers and 26,000 crew.

The Maasdam departing Montreal on a cruise. On the left is  the Sailors’ Memorial clocktower on Victoria Pier. This is where the Canada Steamship Lines and Clarke Steamship Company cruise ships sailed from

Holland America Line’s Maasdam departing Montreal on a cruise. She is Montreal’s most frequent caller. 

Reducing the passenger number further means about 5,600 Australian passengers outnumbered the roughly 5,000 Canadians who took a cruise over Montreal by 12 to 13%, which is quite ridiculous. Montreal is inside in a country with a population of 35 million, while Australia has only 23 million. And Sydneysiders have to travel 10,000 miles to get to Montreal!

Perhaps as well as attracting foreign cruise lines, the Montreal Cruise Committee should start working on attracting more domestic passengers to their local port, which is just down the street, along the highway or less than a half-hour drive away from Trudeau Airport.Essentially, this research means the number of Canadians cruising through Montreal numbers only one in every 7,000 of the country’s population and the nearby Americans outnumber them almost ten to one.

By comparison, this year Vancouver is expected to handle some 805,000 cruise passengers to Montreal’s 66,000, or about twelve times as many as its St Lawrence sister port, with 228 calls compared to Montreal’s 73.

Azamara QuestIf you want to cruise from Montreal next year, The Cruise People Ltd highly recommends Cruiseco’s charter of the Azamara Quest from Montreal to New Orleans, a voyage of 32 nights, next September and October, with 19 ports and 9 overnights.  Further details of the Montreal to New Orleans cruise can be found here

Ironically, this cruise is being offered by the Australian group Cruiseco, who will be bringing several hundred more Australian passengers to Montreal next year.

One way to reach this cruise will be a Transatlantic sailing from Southampton from September 9 to 24. Further details of this Atlantic crossing can be found here. 

For further details on these or any other Montreal cruises call us in London on 020 7723 2450 or email cruisepeopleltd@aol.com.

The Trend To Mid-Size Ships: Saga Orders A Vessel From Meyer Werft

The Cruise Examiner for 5th October 2015

Saga image courtesy Meyer Werft

Artist’s concept of the new Saga ship seems to indicate a wraparound promenade deck

Last week came news from Saga that it had ordered a 55,900-ton cruise ship from Meyer Werft in Papenburg, builders almost three decades ago, in 1986-92, of such well-respected ships as the Homeric, Crown Odyssey, Horizon and Zenith. The new Saga ship, for delivery in 2019, plus a possible sister for 2021, will join the eight “R” ships that set the precedent for this size of cruise ship in 1998-2001, along with Oceania Cruises’ Marina and Riviera from 2011-12 and the Viking Ocean Cruises trio of 2015-17. Compared to the ultra-luxury ships that have tended to occupy this size bracket in the past, these ships will prove that there is a market to be met between the mass market ships carrying thousands of passengers and the ultra-luxury ships carrying just hundreds. This new class of ship will bring back passengers whose needs have not been met by the very large mass-market ships, no matter how many attractions.

A Cruiseco Exclusive Azamara Club Cruises Charter – Azamara Quest, Montreal to New Orleans (32 Nights), September 24, 2016

Montreal to New Orleans 1

MONTREAL TO NEW ORLEANS EDIT

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Discover the Atlantic Seaboard of Canada and USA ~ September 24 to October 26, 2016 Azamara Quest
Montreal to New Orleans – 32 nights – 19 ports – 9 overnights – 8 late departures. Ports Visited: Montreal ~ Québec ~ Charlottetown ~ Halifax ~ Saint John ~ Bar Harbor ~ Portland ~ Boston ~ Provincetown ~ Newport ~ New York ~ Baltimore ~ Norfolk ~ Charleston ~ Port Canaveral ~ Miami ~ Key West ~ Mobile ~ New Orleans

Fares from £6,210 per person double occupancy – Category 12 sold out

For further details online please click here

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Azamara

This Exclusive Cruiseco Charter Includes:
Transfers at the beginning and end of your holiday
All meals on board Azamara Quest
Gratuities to dining room and stateroom staff on board ship
House wine and beer served with lunch and dinner on board
Bottled mineral water throughout your cruise
Full on-board programme of entertainment, enhancement and port lectures

To book now please call The Cruise People Ltd in London on +44 (0)20 7723 2450 or e-mail cruisepeopleltd@aol.com.

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Cruiseco’s Exclusive 2016 Azamara Club Cruises Charters – Lead-in Categories Are Already Sold Out So Book Now To Get Best Fares

Azamara Quest 

The great success of the “Mediterranean Montage” and “European Enchantment” charters for 2015 have paved the way for the creation of two extended charters aboard Azamara Club Cruises in 2016.

These exclusive Cruiseco charters have been designed to ensure your time ashore is maximised with a focus on overnight stays and late departures from ports that are unique and rarely seen on cruise itineraries. Regular cruisers will be surprised and enchanted by the original approach taken by these classic journeys.

Hidden Treasures of the Mediterranean ~ 20 April to 24 May 2016 – Azamara Journey
Nice to Venice – 34 nights – 30 ports – 10 countries – 5 overnights – 15 late departures
Ports Visited: Nice ~ St Tropez ~ Sanary-Sur-Mer ~ Cassis ~ Sète ~ Palamos ~ Ibiza ~ Mahon ~ Propriano ~ Olbia ~ Amalfi ~ Trapani ~ La Goulette ~ Porto Empedocle ~ Valletta ~ Mgarr ~ Chania ~ Limassol ~ Alanya ~ Kas ~ Marmaris ~ Hydra ~ Gythion ~ Itea ~ Dubrovnik ~ Korcula ~ Hvar ~ Ravenna ~ Koper ~ Venice

Fares from £6,300 per person double occupancy – Category 11 and 12 sold out

For further details online please click here

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MONTREAL TO NEW ORLEANS EDIT Discover the Atlantic Seaboard of Canada and USA ~ 24 September to 26 October 2016 Azamara Quest
Montreal to New Orleans – 32 nights – 19 ports – 9 overnights – 8 late departures
Ports Visited: Montreal ~ Québec ~ Charlottetown ~ Halifax ~ Saint John ~ Bar Harbor ~ Portland ~ Boston ~ Provincetown ~ Newport ~ New York ~ Baltimore ~ Norfolk ~ Charleston ~ Port Canaveral ~ Miami ~ Key West ~ Mobile ~ New Orleans

Fares from £6,210 per person double occupancy – Category 12 sold out

For further details online please click here

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Azamara

    Both Charters Include:
– Transfers at the beginning and end of your holiday
– All meals aboard Azamara Journey/Azamara Quest
– Gratuities to dining room and stateroom staff aboard ship
– House wine and beer served with lunch and dinner on board
– Bottled mineral water throughout your cruise
– Full on-board programme of entertainment, enhancement and port lectures

To book now please call The Cruise People Ltd in London on +44 (0)20 7723 2450 or e-mail cruisepeopleltd@aol.com.

Azamara Quest 19 Nights Singapore to Hong Kong, Best of Thailand and Vietnam, Ex-UK November 15, 2015, From £4,285

Azamara QuestAZAMARA QUEST – SINGAPORE TO HONG KONG – 19 NIGHTS BEST OF THAILAND & VIETNAM

Includes 2 Nights Singapore & 3 Nights Hong Kong

Departing UK November 15, 2015.  From £4,285 per person

Itinerary

Fly Overnight from the UK to Singapore (2 nights hotel stay) ~ Embark Azamara Quest ~ Day at Sea ~ Ko Samui (Thailand) ~ Klong Toey (For Bangkok – 2 nights on board) ~ Day at Sea~ Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam – overnight on board ) ~ Day at Sea ~ Hue (Danang – Vietnam) ~ Hanoi (Halong Bay – overnight on board) ~ Day at Sea ~ Hong Kong (3 nights hotel stay) ~ Fly Hong Kong to the UK

Inclusive Azamara Amenities

  • Select standard spirits, international beers and wines
  • Complimentary AzAmazing Evening event
  • Gratuities
  • Bottled water, soft drinks, specialty coffees and teas
  • Self-service laundry
  • Shuttle service to and from port communities where available
  • Concierge service for personal guidance and reservations

Package Includes

  • 14-night Best of Thailand & Vietnam cruise on board Azamara Quest from Singapore to Hong Kong
  • All meals and entertainment on board
  • Raft of exclusive Azamara inclusions as detailed above under “ Inclusive Azamara Amenities “
  • Economy class travel from the UK to Singapore and returning from Hong Kong, available from London, Manchester, Newcastle, Edinburgh & Glasgow
  • 2-night pre-cruise stay at the 5-Star Mandarin Orchard Hotel in a standard double room with breakfast daily
  • Private car transfer Singapore Changi Airport to Hotel
  • Private car transfer Singapore hotel to Marina Bay Cruise Centre
  • 3-night post-cruise stay at the 5-Star Royal Plaza Hotel in a deluxe King double room with breakfast daily
  • Late checkout till 8pm on day of departure from Hong Kong
  • Private car transfer Hong Kong cruise centre to hotel
  • Private car transfer from hotel to Hong Kong International airport
  • Flight taxes
  • Port charges and fees

Fares from £4,285 Inside, £4,455 Outside or £5,715 Balcony, all per person in double occupancy with Business Class flights.

For further information on Azamara Club Cruises or any other Cruiseco cruise package please call The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruisepeopleltd@aol.com.