Seabourn Encore Named In Singapore – Other Cruise News: “No Leisure Group” – Star Cruises From Taiwan

The Cruise Examiner for 9th January 2017

hebrideanprincess

The Hebridean Princess is now owned by the newly-formed Hebridean Island Cruises Ltd (incorporated October 19, 2016)

Saturday saw the naming in Singapore of the 604-berth Seabourn Encore, latest addition to the world’s fleet of ultra-luxury cruise ships. As promised last week, we bring you an update on the liquidation of Britain’s All Leisure Group, including the acquisition of the 50-berth Hebridean Princess by a newly-incorporated company called Hebridean Island Cruises Ltd. And finally, Star Cruises has announced a new series of 5-night cruises from Kaohsiung, Hong Kong and Manila for the 1,870-berth SuperStar Virgo.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                           (See previous columns)

Twenty-Five Years Of Cruise Line Branding – Genting’s World – Royal Caribbean Sells 51% Of Pullmantur – Two Orders For Vard

The Cruise Examiner for 16th May 2016

HAL the new

Holland America cleaned up its logo, changed its fonts and updated its tagline

This week we have a look at cruise line brands. Brands are supposed to differentiate products but with so many multiple and sub-brands these days, we wonder if they also serve to confuse. The branding of cruise lines did not really start in earnest until Carnival and Royal Caribbean started acquiring other cruise lines but has nevertheless been rampant now for a quarter century. Meanwhile, Genting Hong Kong last week confirmed an order for two 5,000-berth “Global” class ships (below) for Star Cruises in addition to its orders for Crystal Cruises and Dream Cruises, with the latter set to accept its first ship later this year. In a counter-move to the many acquisitions of recent years, Royal Caribbean last week announced that it was divesting itself of 51% of Pullmantur Cruises in Spain, but remaining as owner of its ships. And Fincantieri’s Italian subsidiary Vard announced orders for two more expedition ships from unidentified owners.

Star Cruises newbuildings

Star Cruises’ 5,000-berth “Global” class ships will echo NCL’s original side-by-side funnel arrangements

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                          (See previous columns)

Star Cruises Launches Weekly Cruise Service From China To Japan – While CMA CGM Offers Regular Passenger Service By Container Ship

SUPER STAR VIRGO

Star Cruises’ SuperStar Virgo is to sail weekly from the old port of Canton to Japan

Hong Kong-based Star Cruises will launch a direct cruise service to Japan next month to cater to the growing Chinese cruise market. The service will be in operation for a period of five months.

Starting on April 17, the line’s 1,870-berth SuperStar Virgo will enter service from the Pearl River port of Nansha, in the Chinese city of Guangzhou (formerly Canton), to make calls at Okinawa and Miyakojima in Japan. With a population of 13 million, Guangzhou is the third largest city in China, after Beijing and Shanghai. The 5-night service will depart every Sunday and return to Nansha on Fridays.

After a long cruise to Australia and back at the end of last year, SuperStar Virgo was put into service from Hong Kong and Guangzhou to Vietnam in January, and more than 17,000 people have travelled in her to Halong Bay and Da Nang in the past two months.

China’s cruise travel market is forecast to become the largest outside of North America by 2020, with an estimated 4.5 million passengers a year. At the moment, about 1 million Chinese travel overseas on cruise ships every year.

CMA CGM Bougauinville

CMA CGM’s new mega container ships carry up to 10 passengers each to visit ports throughout China

Meanwhile, for those wanting to travel to China by container ship, The Cruise People Ltd offers regular passenger service in ships carrying up to ten (10) passengers each. One line alone, French-based CMA CGM, now offers year-round service to eleven ports in China from ports such as Southampton, Rotterdam, Le Havre, Fos-sur-Mer, Brisbane, Vancouver, Oakland, Long Beach, Buenos Aires and New York.

For further details please call Miri Lopusna at The Cruise People in London on +44 (0)20 7723 2450 or by e-mail at cruisepeopleltd@aol.com.

Dream Cruises, New Upmarket Brand For Asia – Vancouver Returns To Growth – Odds and Ends

The Cruise Examiner for 16th November 2015.

Genting Dream

The Genting Dream is the first of two 3,364-berth upmarket cruise ships being completed for Dream Cruises by Meyer Werft

Last week saw an announcement by Genting that it would be using the two ships it has on order at Meyer Werft for delivery in 2016 and 2017 to launch Asia’s first premium class cruise line. To be called Dream Cruises, the line’s new ships will have a passenger space ratio about 5% higher than Celebrity’s Solstice class vessels. Meanwhile, in Canada, the Port of Vancouver is slowly recovering from the onslaught it received from Seattle several years ago after newer and faster ships saw more Alaska cruises sailing the extra distance from Seattle. Finally, we have updates on previous stories on Crystal River Cruises and Thomson Cruises.

Felixstowe to Sydney By CMA CGM Magellan And SuperStar Virgo, 16th October, Five Days In Malaysia And Singapore Between Ships

This year, take both a passenger-carrying container ship and a cruise ship on your voyage from the UK to Australia and spend five days (November 17-22) in Malaysia or Singapore between ships. Your first ship is CMA CGM’s 10-passenger container ship CMA CGM Magellan (left), where we have double cabins available for the 31-night voyage leaving Felixstowe on October 16 for Port Kelang (for Kuala Lumpur).

Passengers dine together with the officers and are allowed to visit the bridge. The 150,269-ton UK-flag CMA CGM Magellan was built in 2010 and is equipped with a passenger lounge, indoor swimming pool and gym with rowing machine, home trainer, darts and ping pong table. The spacious cabins are en suite and equipped with two or three windows, a sofa, easy chair, coffee table, office desk and chair and refrigerator. And in the ship’s dining room, table wine is included with lunch and dinner.

Dates with cargo ships are always subject to change but the itinerary is planned as follows:

Date             Port              Times

16-Oct-15 Felixstowe
18-Oct-15 Rotterdam
20-Oct-15 Le Havre
02-Nov-15 Jeddah (no shore leave)
17-Nov-15 Arrives Port Kelang

Fares for 31 Nights Felixstowe to Port Kelang (including port charges)

Outside €3,100 (about £2,345) per person double, €3,410 (about £2,580) single. 

SuperStar Virgo sternPassengers taking advantage of these two connecting sailings are responsible for their own land arrangements in Malaysia and Singapore. Then five days after arriving in Port Kelang, it is time to catch Star Cruises’ once-only sailing of the 75,338-ton 1,870-passenger SuperStar Virgo (right) for onward connection to Sydney. She is due to arrive on the morning of Wednesday, December 9, well in time for Christmas. As a bonus, there is a choice of a drinks package or a dining package on the SuperStar Virgo .voyage between Singapore and Sydney.

The full itinerary for this cruise follows (fares for part voyages are not available):

Date             Port              Times
22-Nov-15 Sail from Singapore 2000
24-Nov-15 Jakarta (Tanjung Priok) 0800-2000
25-Nov-15 Cruising Krakatoa 0400-0600
28-Nov-15 Geraldton, WA 1100-1900
29-Nov-15 Fremantle, WA 0800-1800
30-Nov-15 Albany, WA 1300-2100
03-Dec-15 Adelaide 0800-2200
05-Dec-15 Melbourne arrives 0800
06-Dec-15 Melbourne sails 0500
07-Dec-15 Tasmania 0900-2300
09-Dec-15 Arrives Sydney 0700

Fares for 17 Nights Singapore to Sydney (including port charges) start at:

Inside         £1,325 per person double, £1,853 single
Outside      £1,640 per person double, £2,325 single
Balcony      £1,890 per person double, £2,700 single

HOW TO BOOK

If you want to sail all the way from the UK to Australia on two different types of ship then this is your opportunity. Overlanders are also welcome to join the SuperStar Virgo at Singapore. For details please call The Cruise People Ltd in London on +44 (0)20 7723 2450 or e-mail  cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

One-Time Only Singapore-to-Sydney Sailing, 22nd November 2015 By SuperStar Virgo, Starting at £1,325 Inside, £1,853 Outside Cruise Only

SUPER STAR VIRGOOverland travellers to Australia now have a hard tme finding a link by sea from Singapore. But this year Star Cruises is scheduling a once-only voyage from Singapore to Sydney in November by the SuperStar Virgo, with arrival at Sydney on Wednesday, December 9, well in time for Christmas. The full itinerary for this cruise follows:

Date           Port           Time
22-Nov-15 Singapore Sail at 2000
24-Nov-15 Jakarta 0800-2000
25-Nov-15 Cruising Krakatoa 0400-0600
28-Nov-15 Geraldton, WA 1100-1900
29-Nov-15 Fremantle, WA 0800-1800
30-Nov-15 Albany, WA 1300-2100
03-Dec-15 Adelaide 0800-2200
05-Dec-15 Melbourne arrives 0800
06-Dec-15 Melbourne sails 0500
07-Dec-15 Tasmania 0900-2300
09-Dec-15 Arrives Sydney 0700

Fares (including port charges)

17 Nights Singapore to Sydney
Inside £1,325 per person double, £1,853 single
Outside £1,640 per person double, £2,325 single
Balcony £1,890 per person double, £2,700 single

Option 1: It is also possible to join in Hong Kong on 15th November 2015, sailing by way of Sanya (Hainan) in China and Da Nang and Ho Ch Minh City in Vietnam, with through fares as follows:

24 Nights Hong Kong to Sydney
Inside £1,836 per person double, £2,581 single
Outside £2,276 per person double, £3,241 single
Balcony £2,631 per person double, £3,774 single

CMA CGM Magellan 2Option 2: An unusal sea travel connection is available from Europe, on board the 150,269-ton British-flag container ship CMA CGM Magellan departing Le Havre Thursday 15th October and arriving Port Kelang, Malaysia, 16th November 2015. Dine with the officers, wine included with lunch and dinner, swimming pool and gym, you may also visit the bridge. One stop at Jeddah en route but no shore leave. Time spent ashore betwen Port Kelang and Singapore is at traveller’s expense. The fares for this voyage, including port charges are:

31 Nights Le Havre to Port Kelang
Outside £2,345 per person double, £2,580 single

Note: The Singapore to Sydney voyage will be offered exclusively by Cruiseco in 2016 using Royal Caribbean’s brand-new 168,666-ton Ovation of the Seas, departing Singapore 30th November and arriving Sydney 15th December 2016. This will be part of the vessel’s maiden voyage to Australia. Please ask for further details.

HOW TO BOOK

The Cruise People Ltd in London

+44 (0)20 7723 2450 or e-mail

cruisepeopleltd@outlook.com

Norwegian Week – Other Cruise News: Genting Looking At Lloyd-Werft – Astor Returns To Australia In 2016-17

The Cruise Examiner for 10th August 2015

Pride of America

Tying in two of this week’s stories, Norwegian Cruise Line’s US-flag Pride of America was completed by Lloyd Werft in 2004.

Last week saw much news emanating from Norwegian Cruise Line. As well as producing a tidy profit, it announced returns to markets such as Asia and Australia, where it is opening new offices in Sydney and Hong Kong, as well as to South America. Meanwhile, minority Norwegian owner Genting Hong Kong, now owner of the Crystal and Star brands, is having a look at buying part of the Lloyd Werft shipbuilding business in Bremerhaven. Elsewhere, Cruise & Maritime Voyages has announced that Astor will return to Australia in 2016-17, this time sailing in both directions via Panama.

Monfalcone Shipyard Shut For Almost A Week – A New Ship For Hurtigruten – Crystal’s New Expedition Ship?

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 6th July 2015

MegaStar Taurus

Will Star Cruises’ little 72-berth MegaStar Taurus join the newly-acquired Crystal Cruises fleet under a new name?

Last week saw the closure of Fincantieri’s main shipyard at Monfalcone due to a court order seizing certain portions of the yard used to store waste products. A government decree was then passed on Friday so that work can recommence at the yard, which is building two large cruise ships for Carnival and Princess plus the first of its new Seaside class for MSC. Meanwhile, Hurtigruten has acquired a passenger vessel in Portugal that it intends to convert to an expedition ship and unconfirmed rumours from Singapore have Star Cruises’ luxury small ship Megastar Taurus about to join the Crystal fleet.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                           (See previous columns)

Summer Down Under By SuperStar Virgo – This November, Hong Kong to Sydney From £2,965 or Singapore to Sydney From £2,785

SuperStar VirgoStar Cruises has announced that its flagship, the SuperStar Virgo (pictured above), will depart from Hong Kong on November 15 and Singapore on November 22 on an epic 48-day voyage through ports in Southeast Asia and Australia to Sydney.

At 75,338 tons and with 1,870 berths, the SuperStar Virgo is similar in size to the former Queen Elizabeth 2, and with sister ship SuperStar Leo (now Norwegian Spirit) was one of the world’s first Freestyle ships with mutliple bars and restaurants.

PACKAGES

As part of this voyage and in conjunction with cruise supplier Cruiseco, we are offering two line voyages,one from Hong Kong to Sydney on November 15, and one from Singapore to Sydney on November 22, on the UK market.

Hong Kong to Sydney
November 15, 2015, with flights ex-UK the 13th
Including return flights to the UK and post-cruise accommodation in Sydney
Fares from £2,965 per person twin share

Singapore to Sydney
November 22, 2015, with flights ex-UK the 20th
Including return flights to the UK and pre- & post-cruise accommodation
Fares from £2,785 per person twin share

ONBOARD PROMOTION

Bonus Dining packages, beverage packages and on-board credits are available dependant on cruise length. For these two packages guests can choose either dining OR beverage package for all cabin categories. 

SuperStar packages

HOW TO BOOK

Please call The Cruise People Ltd in London on +44 (0)20 7723 2450 or e-mail  cruisepeopleltd@aol.com. If you’re travelling overland and need to span the sea please also call for our passage-only fares.

Virgin Cruises – Greece & Cruising – Star Cruises To Revisit Australia

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 29th June 2015

virgin cruises

Virgin Cruises’ website, where interested parties can tell Virgin what they think its new cruise product should include.

anchorLast Tuesday saw the announcement by Virgin Cruises that it would be building three 2,800-berth ships at Fincantieri in Italy. Although little has been said about the product itself, we have a look at what this new brand could be like and perhaps should be like. Elsewhere, while Greece looks as if it could soon go back to the drachma, we look at what remains of a once thriving Greek cruise fleet. And, finally, Star Cruises returns to Australia with its SuperStar Virgo later this year.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                           (See previous columns)

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.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                                                    (See previous columns)

Quantum of the Seas To Go To China – Holland America Expands UK Program (Again) – Who Needs A North Star Capsule When You’ve Got This?

THE CRUISE EXAMINER at Cybercruises.com by Kevin Griffin

The Cruise Examiner for 21st April 2014..

QuantumoftheSeas

Last week, Royal Caribbean International shocked the industry by announcing that from June 2015, its newest ship, the 167,000-ton Quantum of the Seas (above), will be based year-round in Shanghai. We take a look at the repercussions for Royal Caribbean and what the other Asia players, Costa, Princess and Star, are up to as well. Meanwhile, Holland America has been quietly growing its UK round-trip cruise market to the extent that in 2015 it will be offering thirteen round-trip UK cruises with a dedicated ship, the Ryndam, and boat trains that come right alongside at Harwich. And finally, we have an interesting look at some overhead views.

FOR THIS WEEK’S STORY                                                                                              (See previous columns)