A Ten-Ship Weekend At Southampton – Mascot, Pathfinder or Ambassador? – Crystal Cruises Back In Dover

The Cruise Examiner for 21st August 2017

Pacific Princess

The 688-berth Pacific Princess has served as Princess Cruises’ flagship, mascot and its 50% Anniversary ship

This weekend at Southampton was one of the busiest of the season seeing five cruise ship visits on each of Saturday and Sunday, including the -ton Queen Mary 2,for a total of ten ships over the weekend, plus the -ton passenger-carrying container ship CMA CGM Corte Real on Sunday. Elsewhere, we look at fleets that feature one smaller ship in addition to their main fleet of larger cruise ships. Finally, Crystal Cruises has returned to Dover after a two-year absence.

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This Summer Book One Of Crystal’s New Getaway Voyages: Perfect For Those Who Just Want A Short Break Away

Tilbury to Bordeaux – 6th August 2016 – 7 nights in  Crystal Symphony – Cruise 6220A

Guests will love this beautiful Atlantic itinerary on board the magnificent 960-berth Crystal Symphony this summer. It includes opportunities to enhance the cruise itself with a journey to Paris,  a short distance from Honfleur, to see Versailles, the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe; and the chance to explore Guernsey and see the unique pastel-coloured houses that line the streets and discover a wealth of activities centring around goldsmiths, silversmiths, woodcarvers and clockmakers.

Fares from £1,599 per person cruise only

  • 6th August – Tilbury, England (overnight)
  • 7th August – Tilbury, England
  • 8th August – Honfleur, France (overnight)
  • 9th August – Honfleur, France
  • 10th August – Guernsey/ St. Peter Port, Channel Islands
  • 11th August – St-Malo, France
  • 12th August – Cruising the West Coast of France
  • 13th August – Bordeaux, France

Bordeaux to Lisbon – 13th August – 5 nights in Crystal Symphony – Cruise 6220B

Or, this summer why not discover the resort towns that dot the coastline of Le Verdon. Where, in it’s harbour, stands the oldest lighthouse in France,  the Cordouan light, which boasts a petite chapel and royal chamber.

When in St-Jean-de-Luz, guests can venture into a town rich in historic Basque and stunning architecture, completed with cobblestone lanes, there really is plenty to explore!

Fares from £1,220 per person cruise only

  • 13th August – Bordeaux, France (overnight)
  • 14th August – Bordeaux, France
  • 14th August – Le Verdon/Bordeaux, France
  • 15th August – St-Jean-de-Luz, France
  • 16th August – Cruising the Bay of Biscay
  • 17th August – Lisbon, Portugal (overnight)
  • 18th August – Lisbon, Portugal

For further details please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London at +44 (0)20 7723 2450 or e-mail PassageEnquiry@aol.com.

Star Cruises Owner To Acquire Crystal Cruises – Other Cruise News: TUI Cruises To Acquire Splendour of the Seas

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 9th March 2015

Crystal Serenity and Symphony

Crystal Symphony and Crystal Serenity are being sold by NYK to Star Cruises parent Genting Hong Kong

Surprise news arrived last week when NYK announced it was selling Crystal Cruises to Star Cruises owners Genting Hong Kong, and that a third ultra-luxury ship would be built. Elsewhere, Royal Caribbean Cruises announced that it was transferring its Splendour of the Seas to affiliate TUI Cruises for operation by TUI Group’s UK affiliate Thomson Cruises, something that will introduce hundreds of balconies to the UK operator’s fleet for the first time.

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To Alaska With The Pacific Princess – Top Marks For Crystal Symphony – Mein Schiff 3 On Maiden Voyage

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 16th June 2014..

Mein Schiff 3

This week, two interesting cruise reviews have arrived on our desk, one for the Pacific Princess, which is this summer offering 7-night round voyages from Vancouver to Alaska, the first time Princess has offered this itinerary in a decade, and the second on a coastal segment of Crystal Symphony’s Transatlantic voyage from New York earlier this month. For a change, and as they are both recent and topical, we thought readers might enjoy reading them. Finally, we bring news of the maiden voyage for TUI Cruises’ new Mein Schiff 3, delivered in late May by STX Finland.

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Recent Cruise Review of the 51.044-ton 960-guest Crystal Symphony

S24381KThis review by Hall Coons of a voyage in the Crystal Symphony first appeared on Liners List on June 12, 2014:

My three sons and I are just back from a trip to New England and Nova Scotia. We used the Crystal Symphony as transport from New York up to Halifax.  We were aboard Crystal Symphony for five days – she was on a longer voyage from New York to Iceland, but we only booked the segment to Halifax.  It is nice that Crystal offers these short segments on their longer cruises, as they can be used to travel between ports that do not usually offer any passenger ship services.   Our short voyage from New York also stopped at Newport, Boston, and Bar Harbor.

I am sure that most listers will not have a particularly high opinion of Crystal Symphony.  She is one of the first of the All Outside Cabin cruise  ships  and in many ways resembles the very first AOC ship, Royal Princess (i). First of all the bad news, don’t sail Crystal Symphonyif you are sailing for bold and exciting interior décor.  It is all (well mostly) very bland modern big Hotel style. Lots of beiges , glass , and neutral colors.  The only public rooms that had any notable style were the small Movie Theatre (bright white seats along with a light purple lighting) and the small wood-panelled library.  Also cabins, while very modern, are on the small size for a luxury ship.

But Oh the service!  Honestly, this ship has the best crew and best service that I have encountered in 40 years. The ship has an international crew, but they are predominately from Europe and South America. Our female dining room steward was from Brazil and her male assistant was from Spain. They both offered top notch service.  Every crew member that I encountered seemed to really be enjoying their job and all were friendly, outgoing, and interested in meeting the passengers requests.  And much to my surprise, this ship has deck stewards who really do deck steward work !  Not just selling you drinks (all are included in your ticket on Crystal) but they worked to find you a deck chair or seat, bring you some food from the Quick Service Lunch Counter (aka Trident Grill) or bring you a chilled towel.

The other outstanding feature of the Crystal Symphony is the food.  Really excellent, gourmet quality food served in a professional style.  The menus offer a wide selection of items and everything I had was excellent. Special requests were quickly handled and welcomed.  Food at the lido was also top notch, and the Trident Grill offered the usual hamburgers and hot dogs along with a lot of other choices like salads, pizzas, steak sandwiches, grilled chicken, fresh fruit, etc…. Also the free ice cream bar offered a broad array of choices along with milk shakes and ice cream floats.  Afternoon tea was an event and really a meal within itself.  Warm bouillon was served on the tenders on cool days !  I can’t say enough good things about the quality of the food, the selection, freshness…I mean really it could not have been better in my opinion.

So if you like a cruise for top notch s ervice and great food, I strongly recommend Crystal.

Other features of the ship were a really nice and big swimming pool.  A large hot tub.  A wrap around promenade deck (but not deck chairs here). Tons of open deck space.  A large deck tennis court.  Small putting green.  Secluded tanning space at the front of the ship.

Another notable feature of this voyage was that you never had to wait more than about two minutes for anything !  Even tender boarding only took a two-minute wait.  All meals quickly served, room service right on time, shows on time, boarding the ship was a breeze, and leaving the last day was quick and easy.

So as you can tell I loved the Crystal Symphony.  I hope to sail on her, or her sister, again in the next few years.  She is a bit more expensive than most ships, but you definitely get what you pay for.

For further details on Crystal Cruises please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on +44 (0)20 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk or in North America call 1-800-961-5536 or e-mail cruise@thecruisepeople.ca.

Holland America’s Maasdam Opens Montreal Cruise Season; Record 55,500 Cruise Passengers Expected in 2012, Up 46% on 2011

Crystal Cruises’ Crystal Symphony in the St Lawrence River at Quebec, en route to Montreal

Montreal’s 2012 cruise season, which starts this Saturday with the arrival of Holland America Line’s Maasdam at Alexandra Pier, will set a record: 55,500 passengers are expected to visit Montreal, up 46% over last season. From May 12 to October 24, 2012, 49,000 passengers are expected to transit through the passenger terminal during 35 scheduled international stopovers, and a further 6,500 passengers will embark on domestic cruises, primarily for the Gaspé and the Magdalen Islands in the Gulf of St Lawrence. Pictured above is Crystal Cruises’ Crystal Symphony, which will operate a 7-night round-trip cruise from Montreal on September 30.

“I am absolutely thrilled by these results that show a very promising future for Montreal’s international cruise industry as well as significant economic spinoffs for the city,” said Sylvie Vachon, president and ceo of the Montreal Port Authority, at a press conference held this morning at Iberville Passenger Terminal. Cruise lines calling at Montreal this season will include Aida Cruises, Blount Small Ship Adventures, Crystal Cruises, CTMA, Holland America Line, Oceania Cruises, Phoenix Reisen, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, St Lawrence Cruise Lines, Seabourn, Silversea and Travel Dynamics International.

“The success of the 2012 cruise season isn’t a coincidence. Those involved in this rapidly developing industry have joined forces on the Montreal Cruise Committee and have established the success of this sector as a major priority,” said the Hon Charles Lapointe, President and Chief Executive Officer of Tourisme Montréal.

Led by Tourisme Montréal and the Montreal Port Authority, the Montreal Cruise Committee brings together Aéroports de Montréal, the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal, the Old Port of Montreal Corporation, the Hotel Association of Greater Montreal, the City of Montreal, Casino de Montréal and the Société de développement commercial du Vieux-Montréal. The committee is also supported by the Ministère du Tourisme du Québec. The 2012 cruise season should generate about $14 million in economic benefits.

For more information on cruising to or from Montreal and Quebec as well as New England call The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

The Cruise Examiner for 14th November 2011 – Berlitz Guide to Cruising 2012 – Other Cruise News: US Gulf Ports Celebrate New Ships – Vancouver Sees 15% Cruise Passenger Rise

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com
by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 14th November 2011

This year’s star cruise ship has got to be Oceania Cruises’ new Marina. By outscoring all three of her stable mates from Regent as well as her three fleetmates at Oceania, she has managed to propel herself into the five-star league to be rated number 18 out of 285 cruise ships worldwide scored in this year’s “Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships.” At the same time, however, we have to wonder why two ships that have changed ownership and operation and a third that has not even changed her name yet end up with identical scores before and after the changes. Elsewhere, the US Gulf ports of New Orleans and Galveston have both greeted big new ships this weekend, with the Voyager of the Seas at New Orleans and the brand-new Carnival Magic greeted by Maroon 5 at Galveston. Meanwhile, as Seattle treads water in 2011, Vancouver has seen a 15% increase in cruise passengers with Oceania’s Regatta, the Disney Wonder and the Crystal Symphony bringing new business. Next year, however, will likely see Vancouver tread water while Seattle makes the gains, most notably with the defection of Disney Wonder from Vancouver to Seattle in 2012.

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