John Pond Cruise and Travel Magazine Nov. 2016

ncl_Jewel_Aerial_Horz_2.jpgNorwegian Jewel’s Australian debut   Norwegian Cruise Line’s (NCL) Norwegian Jewel, set to call local waters home from 12 November 2017. During her November 2017 to March 2018 season, Norwegian Jewel will undertake 15 incredible sailings around the South Pacific, New Zealand and Australia, visiting iconic Australian ports from Tasmania to Darwin, before making her way to Singapore.

“We are literally counting the days until Norwegian Jewel begins her Australian season, and we can’t wait to showcase our ‘Feel Free’ style of cruising to the local market. The range of accommodation, dining, activity and entertainment options on board is phenomenal and we’re anticipating high demand, and excitement, among experienced local cruise fans and first-time cruisers,” said Steve Odell, Managing Director for Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Australia. “We’re looking forward to introducing Australian passengers to NCL’s remarkable repertoire of entertainment at sea, which includes cirque, magic and comedy performances as well as Australia’s own award-winning dance production Burn the Floor, which will set the ship’s stage alight on board Norwegian Jewel,” he added.

Portraits Steve Odell.Norwegian Jewel will feature seven Sydney round-trip itineraries, including a five-day ‘Tasmanian Sampler’ departing 12 November, which is an ideal option for first-time cruisers keen to test the waters and gain first-hand experience of NCL’s unique ‘Feel Free’ cruising style.

Other highlights include a nine-day voyage taking in regional gems such as Eden, Kangaroo Island and Tasmania’s Burnie, departing 14 December 2017, and a series of ten to 16-day Australia & New Zealand itineraries departing between November 2017 and February 2018. These itineraries will take in fabulous destinations such as the striking Milford Sound and the spectacular Bay of Islands. Come February 2018, Norwegian Jewel will embark upon an 18-day adventure from Sydney to Singapore, visiting ports in far North Queensland, Darwin and Komodo Island, among others.

Packed with activities for all ages, Norwegian Jewel boasts a casino, eight complimentary restaurants, six specialty dining venues with a la carte and set-menu options, as well as cafes, a bake shop, 24/7 pizza delivery service and myriad specialty bars and lounges including cabaret, champagne, beer and whiskey, sake, mojito and the requisite poolside bar for lazy at-sea afternoon cocktails.

Mr Odell noted that passengers joining cruises remaining in Australian waters don’t require a passport, while for those exploring international waters a passport with six months’ validity is required.

Recently, the line was named “Europe’s Leading Cruise Line” for the eighth consecutive year, as well as “Caribbean’s Leading Cruise Line” for the fourth time and “World’s Leading Large Ship Cruise Line” for the third straight year by the World Travel Award.

PONANT - Le Lyrial (11).jpgPONANT Cruises with No Single Supplement   Designed for solo travellers – PONANT releases an extensive range of destinations and voyages with no additional pricing for those seeking single travel.

Select from 34 PONANT cruise itineraries spanning both Northern and Southern hemispheres with voyages that include Brazil, Indonesia, Panama, Vietnam, Portugal, the Canary Islands, Australia, Scandinavia, Melanesia and more.

Also available, three themed voyages for those that enjoy classical  music – Chopin and the Music of Spain, a Tribute to Maria Callas, and a brand new voyage with members of the Vienna State Opera cruising between Venice and Civitavecchia (Rome) on Le Lyrial.

Onboard, creature comforts prevail. Enjoy French luxury and ambiance, and experience the difference small ship cruising offers. Cool off in the swimming pool, enjoy spa therapy to ease tired muscles or simply as a pampering indulgence. An inclusive Open Bar provides guests with the chance to share the day’s experiences with new found friends over a beer, wines, champagne or, perhaps, a cocktail. Later, the choice of fine cuisine, the flavours complimented with world-class wines.

Contours - South America tour.jpgKnow about South America before you travel there   

Machu Picchu, Rio de Janeiro and Iguazu Falls are iconic attractions visitors to South America flock to but there’s a lot more to see and do across the vast continent. Contours Travel has released a list of six things to know about South America before you travel there.

South America is huge  The continent comprises 13 countries and covers 17.84 million square kilometres. This means you won’t be able to see it all in one holiday. Instead, focus on exploring one area in more depth and more slowly.

Learn a few words of Spanish before you go   Picking up a Spanish phrase book and learning the basic greetings and phrases will put you in good stead with the locals you encounter. Nine of the continent’s 13 countries have Spanish as their official language and even mastering just a few words of the local lingo will help you have more meaningful interactions with the people you meet.

There are a huge variety of walks on offer   South America is home to deserts, mountains, national parks, rainforests, glaciers and ice caps – all of which can be explored on foot. Whether it’s trekking up the Andes in Argentina, exploring the national parks of Brazil, journeying through the spectacular Atacama Desert or discovering one of the six Inca trails around the Sacred Valley near Machu Picchu, walking is a great way to immerse yourself in your surroundings.

You can stay in haciendas that are over 100 years old   When travelling to South America, you don’t have to stay in cookie-cutter hotels all the time. Instead, opt to stay in character-filled haciendas (farmhouses) which dot the countryside in Ecuador, Argentina, Bolivia, Chile and other South American countries. Contours Travel offers an eight-day hike through the Avenue of Volcanoes in Ecuador, with travelers staying in lovingly restored haciendas along the way.

Colombia is the home of the world’s best coffee   Australians love their coffee and Colombia is known for making the world’s finest brew. The climate, topography and tropical Andean forest all contribute to the production of such high quality beans and Australians visiting the region can see the plantation and production of coffee at work, including the harvest, sun-drying and processing. Contours Travel offers a five-day, self-drive ‘Coffee Triangle’ tour:

Australians who book three nights at the luxurious winery resort of Vina Vik Millahue Hotel in Chile will receive a free night at the five-star hotel, Singular Santiago.

Call Contours Travel on 1300 135 391 or visit www.contourstravel.com.au/tours/vina-vik Not responsible for errors or omissions, prices subject to availability, changes of terms and conditions may apply.

 

Cuba cars.jpgNORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE RECEIVES APPROVAL TO SAIL TO CUBA

Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises Will Sail a Collection of Voyages in Spring 2017 that include calls on Cuba’s Capital of Havana. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. Becomes First U.S. Cruise Operatorto Have Full Portfolio of Brands Approved to Sail to Cuba.

  The company’s first cruise to Cuba will set sail from Port Miami on Oceania Cruises’ Marina on March 7, 2017 with select Caribbean itineraries featuring calls on Havana, including many multiple-day calls to allow guests to explore Havana and its environs.  Seven Seas Mariner, of the Regent Seven Seas Cruises fleet, will call on Havana during two cruises in April 2017. Norwegian Sky will also offer a selection of four-day voyages that will overnight in Havana in May 2017.

Australian cruisers will really benefit from NCL’s addition of mighty ships that will call Australia home during our cruising season next year. JP.

Norwegian Cruise Line’s (NCL) Norwegian Jewel, set to call local waters home from 12 November 2017. During her November 2017 to March 2018 season, Norwegian Jewel will undertake 15 incredible sailings around the South Pacific, New Zealand and Australia, visiting iconic Australian ports from Tasmania to Darwin, before making her way to Singapore.

“We are literally counting the days until Norwegian Jewel begins her Australian season, and we can’t wait to showcase our ‘Feel Free’ style of cruising to the local market. The range of accommodation, dining, activity and entertainment options on board is phenomenal and we’re anticipating high demand, and excitement, among experienced local cruise fans and first-time cruisers,” said Steve Odell, Managing Director for Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Australia.

“We’re looking forward to introducing Australian passengers to NCL’s remarkable repertoire of entertainment at sea, which includes cirque, magic and comedy performances as well as Australia’s own award-winning dance production Burn the Floor, which will set the ship’s stage alight on board Norwegian Jewel,” he added.

NCL initially returns to Australian shores with the Norwegian Star in February 2017, serving as a prelude to Norwegian Jewel’s inaugural Australian season. Norwegian Jewel will feature seven Sydney round-trip itineraries, including a five-day ‘Tasmanian Sampler’ departing 12 November, which is an ideal option for first-time cruisers keen to test the waters and gain first-hand experience of NCL’s unique ‘Feel Free’ cruising style.

Norwegian Jewel: what’s on board? Refurbished in 2014 to exacting standards, Norwegian Jewel can host up to 2376 guests, enjoying personalised attention from 1069 professional crew.

Packed with activities for all ages, Norwegian Jewel boasts a casino, eight complimentary restaurants, six specialty dining venues with a la carte and set-menu options, as well as cafes, a bake shop, 24/7 pizza delivery service and myriad specialty bars and lounges including cabaret, champagne, beer and whiskey, sake, mojito and the requisite poolside bar for lazy at-sea afternoon cocktails.

Fitness fans will enjoy the on-board outdoor court action hosting basketball, dodgeball, tennis and volleyball, and kids will adore the aqua park, Sapphire pools and age-specific kids’ clubs, while gym enthusiasts can choose from a range of classes, including Zumba and yoga.

Mr Odell noted that passengers joining cruises remaining in Australian waters don’t require a passport, while for those exploring international waters a passport with six months’ validity is required.

About Norwegian Cruise Line Norwegian Cruise Line is the innovator in cruise travel with a 50-year history of breaking the boundaries of traditional cruising, most notably with the introduction of Freestyle Cruising, which revolutionised the industry by giving guests more freedom and flexibility. Norwegian Cruise Line invites guests to explore the world on one of 14 purpose-built Freestyle Cruising ships, providing guests the opportunity to enjoy a relaxed, resort style cruise holiday on some of the newest and most contemporary ships at sea. Recently, the line was named “Europe’s Leading Cruise Line” for the eighth consecutive year, as well as “Caribbean’s Leading Cruise Line” for the fourth time and “World’s Leading Large Ship Cruise Line” for the third straight year by the World Travel Awards.

 Seabourn Encore at sea.jpgSeabourne Launches New Ship

Said to be the world’s finest ultra-luxury cruise line, Seabourn has taken delivery of its newest all-suite vessel, Seabourn Encore, during an official handover ceremony at the Fincantieri shipyard in Marghera, Italy.

Seabourn President Rick Meadows said the cruise line had been looking forward to the handover for more than two years. “Seabourn Encore has become a stunning ship that will set a new standard in ultra-luxury cruising,” Mr Meadows said.  “I am very proud of our partnership with Fincantieri, and it has been a great pleasure to work together to transform raw materials into this incredible vessel that will make a great addition to the Seabourn fleet.”

Seabourn Encore will be officially christened at a ceremony in Singapore on January 7, 2017 by international recording artist and world’s best-selling Soprano, Sarah Brightman, before setting sail for Australia.  The ship will arrive in Darwin on January 22, 2017 and cruise the Queensland coast before debuting in Sydney on February 2. It will depart Australia on March 17, returning for its second season of cruises Down Under from December 2017 to February 2018.

  • Not responsible for errors or omissions, prices subject to availability, changes of terms and conditions may apply.

MORE: http://www.cruiseandtravelmagazine.net

 

 

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About John Pond, J.P.

Pioneer in television as producer of thousands of hours of TV shows on Australian and American television including Graham Kennedy, Tommy Leonetti, People in Conflict, Hollywood Bowl, Major Specials and Dr John‘s Casebook TV Shows. TV manager J. Walter Thompson & McCannErickson Advertising and head of production for Columbia Pictures TV. John changed careers to the hospitality industry working for Sydney’s top 5 star hotel as director of sales and marketing and GM. Then with Harrah’s/Caesar's World, the world’s largest hotel and casino group in Nevada. Playboy Magazine in Chicago, head of worldwide PR/Marketing, for their Resorts, Clubs, Hotels & Casinos. Producer at Fox Studios in Los Angeles. Co-creator of hit US network TV show Joker, Joker, Joker, first TV show to give away a million dollars. Writer travel articles for magazines and newspapers including Washington Post, New York Times, American Playboy as well as local Australian papers and magazines. In the USA represented many personalities including Frank Sinatra, John Wayne, Bob Hope, Mel Torme, and many other major names. John is Editor at Sea of Australia’s leading cruise magazine, Travel & Cruise writer for The Retiree Magazine, Destinations Magazine and Spectator Group of Newspapers. John reviews cruise ships, Destinations and Hotels, and is ably assisted by his Associate Editor Sandra Tiltman.
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