MSC Cruises Summer 2022 Season With UK Homeport

MSC Cruises has announced the opening of sales for MSC Magnifica’s third full EX-UK season in Summer 2022. Homeporting in Southampton with a brand new terminal following a recently announced partnership with ABP Southampton, it has never been easier to reach some of Britain’s favourite European destinations and all without leaving behind any of the home comforts thanks to the return of MSC Cruises ‘Best of British’ enhancements on-board.

The 21 sailings departing from Southampton beginning in April and ending in October will see cruises ranging from 2 to 14 nights with a variety of exciting itineraries visiting classic British favourites including the Canary Islands & Madeira, the Mediterranean, Northern Europe and the Baltic Capitals. Many of the 21 sailings will begin on a Saturday ensuring guests can make the most of their holiday and have an even more seamless travel experience.

Antonio Paradiso MD MSC Cruises UK & Ireland commented, “Throughout this difficult period we have been delighted at the continued on-going feedback from agents and guests, who are eager to sail with MSC Cruises from Southampton to new destinations. We are committed to providing UK holidaymakers with the holidays they want, and travel agents with cruises they want to sell. We hope that MSC Magnifica’s third full summer season in Southampton and her brand-new itineraries created specifically with British holidaymakers in mind, demonstrates to both our guests and the trade our continued commitment to growing the UK market.

He added “The UK market is a priority for MSC Cruises and we have shown our commitment consistently over the last few years. Firstly, with our first ever full EX-UK season in 2018, then with the naming of MSC Bellissima in Southampton in 2019, followed by a second much anticipated full EX-UK season coming up this 2021 Summer season so, we are anticipating another great response to having MSC Magnifica based back in the UK next summer.”

Highlights include three itineraries to the Baltic capitals, a 12-night cruise departing in late May, and two 14-night cruises departing in July and September. Offering slightly different itineraries with added highlights on the 14-night itinerary including two overnight stays in the Swedish Capital Stockholm, and a visit to Denmark’s Skagen. The sailings include an overnight onboard stay in St Petersburg and a visit to Norway’s capital, Oslo for that perfect Instagram snap.

Developed with families in mind following guest and travel agent feedback are two spectacular 14-night Western Mediterranean cruises in July and August. These no-fly cruises begin with two sea days to give guests a chance to settle in and enjoy the ships facilities. Then the action-packed itineraries allow guests to explore seven different ports in nine days including an overnight stay in the fabulous city of Palma de Mallorca and a visit to the exclusive Monte Carlo for that added touch of glamour.

MSC Magnifica will offer four different stunning Norwegian Fjord itineraries departing throughout Summer 2022, all of which have been designed to showcase the very best of the region’s world-renowned natural landscapes. Explore much loved ports including Flamm and Stavanger, famous for their medieval history as well as recently added destinations for MSC Cruises such as Bergen, where guests can discover the Hanseatic quarter- a UNESCO World Heritage site- and Nordfjordeid, the home of Norway’s largest Viking ship,the Myklebustskipet.

In addition to new itineraries MSC Magnifica will be back with all the ‘Best of British’ enhancements that were initially showcased on MSC Magnifica in 2018, including favourite’s such as pie & mash, back bacon and sausages available in the buffet and kettles in cabins with Yorkshire Tea, which is back by popular demand.

To ensure passengers have total peace of mind when booking that much needed escape, MSC Cruises’ Stress Free Cruising programme offers guests flexible booking conditions, allowing them to change their sailing up to 15 days prior to departure, while also being guaranteed the highest level of health and safety thanks to our rigorous and industry leading onboard protocol.

ITINERARY HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE –

14 NIGHTS PERFECT FOR FAMILIES

MSC Cruises is offering a 14-night cruise to some of the Mediterranean’s most adored destinations and it’s just right for that next family break. Departing on 23rd July this no-fly cruise kicks off with two days at sea to give guests the opportunity to relax and explore the ships modern facilities. The two week sailing offers guests an action packed itinerary visiting seven different ports, stopping first in Cadiz, Malaga and Alicante, followed by a late departure from the chic island of Palma de Mallorca, a visit to the exclusive Monte Carlo and stops in the punchy cities of Lisbon and Barcelona.

Prices starting from £4,136 for a family of 4 on a cruise only basis, all food, drink and service charges included in the price. Departing 23rd July 2022 from Southampton onboard MSC Magnifica. 

CANARY ISLANDS

Join a 12-night sailing right from your doorstep and rediscover some of the Mediterranean’s most beloved destinations. Setting sail from Southampton on Sunday 01 May 2022, the itinerary explores the heart of the Canaries, first stopping in the charismatic cities of Lisbon and Funchal, followed by the beloved Canary Islands of Tenerife, Gran Canaria and Lanzarote with a final stop in the picturesque coastal city of Vigo before returning to Southampton.

Prices start from £1,139 per person based on two people sharing a cabin on a cruise only basis, all food, drink and service charges included in the price. Departing 01 May 2022 from Southampton onboard MSC Magnifica. 

Norway Your Way

With so many picturesque ports to explore in Norway join a seven-night sailing to the Norweigan Fjords to see the beloved classics as well as some new ports of call for MSC Cruises. Departing on 20th May 2022 explore the popular ports of Flamm, Bergen and Stavanger and Nordfjordeid where the views are some of the most breathtaking in Europe. With 4 ports in seven days, this action packed break will drop you right back to Southampton for ultimate easy travelling.

Prices start from £749 per person based on two people sharing a cabin on a cruise only basis, all food, drink and service charges included in the price. Departing 20 May 2022 from Southampton onboard MSC Magnifica. 

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Posted in Cruise News, MSC Cruises

Silversea’s New Ship Silver Dawn Floats Out In Ancona

Silversea Cruises’ new ship Silver Dawn touched water for the first time today during her float-out at the Fincantieri shipyard in Ancona, Italy. The fitting out phase will now begin — during which Fincantieri’s skilled craftspeople will bring the ship’s elegant interiors to life. Silver Dawn will become the 10th ship in the leading ultra-luxury cruise line’s fleet. With the delivery of both Silver Origin and Silver Moon in 2020, and with the delivery of Silver Dawn scheduled for November 2021, Silversea Cruises—and the global cruise industry in general—continues to demonstrate great resilience. 

“We proudly celebrate this major milestone in the build of our beautiful new Silver Dawn,” says Roberto Martinoli, President and CEO of Silversea Cruises. “Our long-term collaboration with Fincantieri continues to push boundaries in the ultra-luxury cruise industry, while the ongoing support and expertise of the Royal Caribbean Group has been invaluable to the ship’s build. While Silver Dawn takes influence from our beloved ships Silver Muse and Silver Moon, our guests will benefit from many pioneering enhancements aboard the tenth ship in our fleet. We look forward to revealing these in the coming months.” 

The third ship in the Muse-class series, and part of a long-term plan to grow and enhance the cruise line’s already luxurious fleet, Silver Dawn will be a sistership to Silversea’s Silver Muse, built in the Fincantieri shipyard of Sestri Ponente (Genoa) in April 2017, and Silver Moon, which was delivered in Ancona in October 2020.  

Accommodating just 596 guests in 298 ocean-view suites – 96% of which will have a private veranda – and with a crew-to-guest ratio of 1:1.45, Silver Dawn will maintain the small-ship intimacy and spacious accommodation which are the hallmarks of the Silversea experience. She will offer guests many exciting enhancements when compared to Silver Muse and Silver Moon, which will be unveiled in due course. Providing superlative comfort and an enhanced onboard experience, she will unlock authentic travel experiences for Silversea’s discerning guests in the world’s most spectacular destinations. 

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Posted in Cruise News, Silversea Cruises

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines Announces Revised ‘Back In Service’ Date For New Ship Borealis

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has today announced a revised ‘back in service’ date for new ship Borealis, in light of the latest Government lockdown.

Borealis will still be the first of the fleet to set sail, with her maiden voyage with Fred. Olsen now the seven-night ‘Sailing Around Iconic Ireland’ cruise, departing from Liverpool on 22nd May 2021. Borealis was initially due to set sail on 23rd April 2021.

Peter Deer, Managing Director at Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, said:

“When we announced our new ‘back in service’ plans in December, we had every confidence in these new dates based on the information available to us at the time.

“Since then, we have seen a third national lockdown imposed, and this must be taken into consideration for our plans in returning to service.

“Deferring Borealis’ return allows us a little more time to consider and understand the developments around Covid-19, including the roll-out of the vaccine, and how this will reflect how we operate.

“We were also conscious that guests on sailings in April and early May would be due to pay their final balances soon, which is why we have taken this decision now.

“We are really looking forward to welcoming our guests back on board with us in 2021, and I would like to stress that we will not do so until we are confident that the time is right.”

Bolette will be the second of the Fred. Olsen fleet to set sail, and will depart from Dover on 29th May 2021, followed by Balmoral from Edinburgh (Rosyth) on 9th June 2021. Due to having an extensive fly-cruise programme, Braemar will remain in lay-up until 2022.

All guests who are booked onto a cancelled sailing will be notified of the changes, and will be provided with a number of options including a no-quibble refund as part of Fred. Olsen’s Plain Sailing Guarantee.

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Posted in Cruise News, Fred Olsen Cruise Lines

Dancing Down The Danube With Dame Darcey Bussell

Former ballerina and Strictly Come Dancing judge, Dame Darcey Bussell, will join guests of luxury, all-inclusive cruise line Scenic on a special dance-themed river cruise. Travelling from Budapest to Nuremberg along the iconic Danube river, Scenic’s limited edition, eight-day Dancing down the Danube with Dame Darcey Bussell itinerary departs 20 October 2021. Prices start from just £2,320 per person, including a £200 per person discount.

Dame Darcey Bussell will join guests onboard in Budapest as the itinerary sets sail to the ‘City of Music’, Vienna. Guests will be enthralled with an enchanting private concert at the opulent Palais Liechtenstein, featuring classical Ballet and Blue Danube Waltz performances compered by Darcey herself. Whilst onboard, Darcey will reflect on her life and career, answer guest questions in a live Q+A session and host a drinks reception.

Following on from Vienna, the itinerary will take guests to Dürnstein, Melk and Regensburg, with the chance to visit the medieval Czech city of Cesky Krumlov or continue the musical theme with a visit to Salzburg – the birthplace of Mozart. Other highlights include a guided bike ride along the river from Dürnstein to Melk and the chance to meet the current owners of Artstetten Castle. Taste regional delicacies in the Wachau Valley or sample beer from one of the oldest monastic breweries in the world in Regensburg.

Scenic’s truly all-inclusive philosophy ensures everything guests need for a five-star travel experience is included in the up-front cost, including return UK flights, transfers, all meals across a choice of onboard venues, premium branded beverages, daily excursions with expert guides, a personal onboard butler, in-suite mini bar and much more.

To provide guests with maximum flexibility, all bookings are covered within Scenic’s flexible Booking Policy meaning guests can change their booking up to 60 days prior to departure without any fees*. Scenic’s dedicated Health & Safety Steering Committee oversees all health and safety policies, going above and beyond to ensure all guests’ wellbeing and safety is taken care of to the highest standard. For more information, see www.scenic.co.uk/assurance.

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Posted in River Cruising, Scenic

Regent Seven Seas Cruises Announces Largest Suite Upgrade Promotion In Its History

Regent Seven Seas Cruises has launched Upgrade Your Horizon where guests can enjoy a 2-Category Suite Upgrade, up to a Penthouse Suite, on all published cruises when booked between 4th January and 28th February 2021. 

Travellers can take the unrivalled Regent experience to new heights by relaxing and unwinding in their embarkation city with a FREE 1-Night Pre-Cruise Hotel Stay when they upgrade to a Concierge Suite. Or, they can upgrade to a luxuriously appointed Penthouse Suite and enjoy additional perks and amenities including a personal butler.

Guests from the UK sailing in Deluxe Window Suites through Master Suites can also enjoy the benefits of 10% Reduced Deposits, except for on Grand Voyages and World Cruises. 

“Following an unprecedented year, we didn’t want to limit travel options for our guests, which is why we decided to make Upgrade Your Horizon our most generous suite upgrade by opening it up to all available ships, voyages and destinations,” said Jason Montague, president and chief executive officer, Regent Seven Seas Cruises. “Regent is renowned for delivering an unrivalled experience with every luxury included, which our guests can now enjoy with heightened in-suite service-levels thanks to a FREE 2-Category Suite Upgrade in the destination of their choice.” 

Additionally, Regent Reassurance, which allows travellers to cancel for any reason up to 15 days prior to departure date and receive a 100% Future Cruise Credit, has been extended for all bookings made by 31st January 2021, for all voyages departing through 31st October 2021.

Upgraded Horizons Across the Globe

Upgrade Your Horizons offers guests the chance to enjoy enhanced levels of luxury and in-suite service levels on any ship, any voyage and in any destination. Regent Seven Seas Cruises has curated a vacation wish list to help guests choose their next unrivalled experience with every luxury included.

All ports feature free unlimited shore excursions, which complement Regent’s ever-expanding menu of complimentary luxuries including flights, gourmet cuisine in a range of specialty restaurants and al fresco dining venues, fine wines and spirits, in-suite liquor and mini bar replenished daily,entertainment, unlimited internet access, free valet laundry, gratuities, and ground transfers.

Africa

Wines, Dunes & Wildlife

  • Seven Seas Voyager®
  • Cape Town to Cape Town
  • 6th December 2022 – 15 nights

The mighty plains of Africa serve as an incredible backdrop to this cruise, which starts or ends with a FREE 3-night land programme and sails to ports in South Africa, Namibia and Mozambique. Guests on the Wines, Dunes & Wildlife cruise can take advantage of up to 20 free shore excursions which include discovering the majestic Namib desert in Walvis Bay, Namibia, or learning about the Zulu way of life in the Valley of a Thousand Hills in Durban, Africa.

Alaska

Glaciers and Glories of Alaska

  • Seven Seas Mariner®
  • Vancouver to Seward
  • 18th May 2022 for 7 nights

The magnificent Hubbard Glacier, and lush green forests and abundant wildlife of the Inside Passage await explorers on the Glaciers and Glories of Alaska cruise. Up to 58 free shore excursions can be enjoyed from a seafood feast of Dungeness crab, mussels and shrimp in Ketchikan, Alaska to a rainforest bicycle tour in Skagway, Alaska.

Asia

Culture and Cuisine of Asia

  • Seven Seas Explorer®
  • Bali to Bangkok
  • 4th February 2022 – 14 nights

As well as visiting an intoxicating collection of south east Asian destinations in Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam, guests can expand their exploration with a FREE pre-cruise 3-night land programme in Bali, Indonesia or a FREE post-cruise 3-night land programme in Bangkok, Thailand. Culture and Cuisine of Asia has up to 41 free shore excursions where guests may, for example, tour the Tiger Brewery, makers of Singapore’s national beer, or explore the Cu Chi tunnels in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

Australia & New Zealand

Kangaroos, Koalas & Dragons

  • Seven Seas Explorer
  • Sydney to Bali
  • 19th January 2022 – 16 nights

Kangaroos, Koalas & Dragons is part of Seven Seas Explorer’s maiden season in the region, which also includes sailings to New Zealand. The cruise begins in Sydney, Australia and ends in Bali, Indonesia offering up to 32 FREE shore excursions, and includes a FREE 3-night land programme in either of those fascinating ports of call. Wine and cheese tasting 1400 feet above sea level in Mooloolaba, Australia and searching for Komodo Dragons in Indonesia are highlights.

Canada and New England

First Glimmer of Fall

  • Seven Seas Navigator®
  • New York to Montréal
  • 9th September 2022 – 11 nights

The First Glimmer of Fall treats guests to the glorious shades of yellow, orange, red, purple, and brown of autumnal Canada and New England. The cruise boasts up to 70 FREE shore excursions from walking the hallowed halls of Harvard University in Boston, Massachusetts to learning confectioners’ secrets in a hands-on fudge making class in Sydney, Nova Scotia.

The Caribbean

The Caribbean: East to West

  • Seven Seas Splendor®
  • Miami to Miami
  • 13th January 2022 – 21 nights

The Caribbean: East to West cruise sails on board the ship that perfects luxury, Seven Seas Splendor, launched in early 2020. The ship visits 14 ports of call across the Caribbean including Castries, St Lucia in the east and Santo Tomás de Castilla, Guatemala in the west, plus the private islands of Great Stirrup Cay, Bahamas and Harvest Caye, Belize. Two of the 146 FREE shore excursions on offer are a relaxing rainforest yoga session in Colonial Roseau, Dominica and a pulse-racing jungle ATV adventure in Cozumel, Mexico.

Mediterranean

Delights of Greece & Turkey

  • Seven Seas Explorer
  • Athens to Jerusalem
  • 24th May 2022 – 12 nights

An overnight stay in Istanbul, Turkey and Jerusalem, Israel, are just two reasons that the Delights of Greece & Turkey is a must for luxury travellers. The voyage discovers 4 countries in the eastern Mediterranean without a single sea day and up to 73 FREE shore excursions bring ancient history and culture to life. Treasures abound at the Cyprus Archaeological Museum in Nicosia, which guests can visit from Limassol, Cyprus and there are countless Holy Land sites such as Bethlehem and Nazareth located in and around Ashdod and Haifa in Israel.

Northern Europe
The Sights of St Petersburg

  • Seven Seas Splendor
  • Stockholm to Stockholm
  • 26th August 2022 – 10 nights

Known as the ‘Window to the West’, St Petersburg in Russia has long been high on the wish list of luxury travellers owing to its unfamiliar culture and fascinating, spellbinding history. The Sights of St Petersburg cruise gives guests the opportunity to explore the city with 2-nights in port and visits locales in Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland. There’s up to 48 FREE shore excursions to be enjoyed including tours of the Hermitage Museum and House of Fabergé in St Petersburg and touring Sweden’s medieval Visby by bicycle.

South America

Brazil’s Beaches & Jungles

  • Seven Seas Voyager
  • Buenos Aires to Miami
  • 19th February 2022 – 31 nights

Brazil’s Beaches & Jungles cruise has an overnight in Montevideo, Uruguay and calls at 15 ports in Brazil including a 7-night exploration of the Amazon River. Additionally, the voyage visits Fort-de-France, Martinique and Gustavia, St Barts in the Caribbean. Guests can enjoy a FREE 3-night pre-cruise land programme in Buenos Aires plus up to 54 FREE shore excursions. Travellers can ride a cable car to the summit of the iconic Sugarloaf Mountain during an overnight in Rio De Janeiro, while an overnight in Manaus, Brazil provides opportunity to spot caiman drifting on the Amazon.

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Posted in Cruise News, Regent Seven Seas

Take A Virtual Cruise! (The Next Best Thing To Being Aboard the Actual Colossus of the Ocean)

Guest Blog by Kevin G. Chapman[i]

None of us can take a cruise these days. We all wish we could. We can share memories of cruises, pictures from our favorite ships, and videos of our favorite karaoke performances. Or, we can take a virtual cruise.

Here’s how.

Here’s your “Daily Navigator” – the itinerary for yourself and your cruising companions. Get 2-3 of your best friends/couples, make sure somebody has a video conferencing account (e.g. Zoom), and plan out your virtual cruise day together. Sure, you can do it all by yourself, but it’s way more fun with a group! It’s time to do some pretending (for a good cause – your sanity). Your specific schedule may vary, of course, and you should substitute your favorite cruise ship activities, but here’s my itinerary:

9:00 a.m. – breakfast. Pre-prepare for yourself a favorite breakfast. (Get your spouse or child who is now living at home during the pandemic to be your Cabin Steward for the day. Your Steward should prepare your breakfast and be your attendant during your virtual cruise. If you don’t have a Steward, try to make all your arrangements in advance so you don’t feel like you’re working.) Stroll to the dining room and enjoy your day-starter. Buy some oranges and make fresh squeezed juice. Get that special coffee. Take your time with it.

10:00 a.m. – lounging by the pool. If you have a pool, and it’s not too cold, then by all means lounge by your pool. No pool? No problem. Let’s face it, on a cruise ship, you didn’t really go into the pool much, if at all. What you need is a lounge chair (get it from the garage), a big, soft towel, a heat lamp, and a fan. Set yourself up in a quiet place (or put on the sounds of children playing in a pool), sit back, grab a good book (or audiobook), and lounge. Fifteen or twenty minutes later, have your Steward bring you a mimosa, made with that fresh squeezed orange juice. If you have a jacuzzi available, take a dip in that every half hour or so. Remember to wear your swimsuit, with or without your favorite coverup, even if you don’t get wet.

12:30 p.m. – lunch. Change into something fun and casual (after a shower, if you insist) and have something brought in from your favorite casual restaurant. Pair with a frozen strawberry daiquiri or a pina colada martini (recipe below). Again – take your time. Enjoy. Bring your book, or listen to your iPod while you eat.

2:00 p.m. – afternoon trivia. Set up with your friends online and play a trivia game. Pull out the old Trivial Pursuit game. Fire up your home game of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, or Jeopardy! If you’re really ambitious, have each participant come up with ten trivia questions to pose to the group. Good with audio files? Mix together a set of ten or twenty music clips and have your friends try to guess the song and artist. Give away cheap, irrelevant prizes! Fun for everyone. (I’m not a Bingo guy, myself, but if you love playing Bingo, then set up a game and go to town.)

3:30 p.m. – Karaoke! The most fun of all. Cue up your favorite karaoke song (they are all on the internet) and take turns with your friends. Everybody sings along (mandatory). Make a video on your phone (then burn it). Try an online duet if you want a challenge. (Can be moved to late-night activity at your discretion, in which case, substitute a different activity here, or return to lounging by the virtual pool and reading more of your good book.)

5:00 p.m. – Cocktails. You have the unlimited drink plan, so use it. Dress for dinner, then meet up with your zoom friends. Use a fun virtual background, or the most fun location inside (or outside) your home. A pina colada martini is great here, or your favorite scotch or cocktail. Put it in a pretty glass, and bring along a refill. Chat it up with your friends and have everyone show off their outfits. Have a joke-telling contest (everyone plan ahead).

6:00 p.m. – Photo. You’re already in your best formal night outfit, so take a photo (with or without your significant other). Get the best background you can manage, or use a green screen and a virtual background if you can manage that. A glass of champagne as a prop is always nice.

6:30 p.m. – Dinner. Bring in the fanciest meal you can get from a local restaurant. Your Steward/child can serve you (in a tux, if possible). Use your best china and silver. Get some flowers for the table. Pop a bottle of your best bubbly or wine, set up your laptop with your zoom friends so they can see you, and enjoy a leisurely meal. Over the meal, share stories of your favorite vacation spots with your dinner mates. Don’t forget a sinful dessert!

8:00 p.m. – Comedy Club. Arrange with your virtual friends to all watch together a favorite one-hour comedy special that you can all get on Netflix, DVD, or have someone cast the show onto the Zoom meeting for everyone to watch. Connect your laptop to your biggest TV if you can. I recommend Iliza Shlesinger, but your taste may vary. The point is to have everyone watches together and laughs together. Have your Steward bring you a drink while you watch. (You have the unlimited drink plan, remember.) Or, maybe this is a good time for a seltzer to hydrate.

9:00 p.m. – Final toast. It’s been a long day, or you can feel free to plan other evening activities and stretch it out. Whenever you’re ready to call it a night, gather your friends, refill your glass, and have one final toast to your virtual cruise day.

Do no dishes. Do no cleaning. That’s what your Steward is for. Enjoy yourself – it’s a cruise. It may be as close as you can get . . . for a while.

Pina Colada Martini

1½ oz. pineapple rum

1½ oz. coconut rum

½ oz. pineapple juice

Combine in a shaker with ice,

 then strain into a chilled martini glass

Garnish with pineapple chunk and a cherry

If you’re looking for a good book to read by the virtual pool . . . or if you can’t manage all the set-up to take the above virtual cruise . . . you can simulate the experience by reading a good book about a cruise:

“Take a six-night cruise to Bermuda from your couch. If you like cruising, you should get yourself a copy of Lethal Voyage. I loved it!”

— Bruce Frommert, Travelling With Bruce YouTube channel.

Lethal Voyage is book #3 in the Mike Stoneman Thriller series, but a fully stand-alone story. NYPD Homicide detective Mike Stoneman and medical examiner Michelle McNeill make a new friend, Shirley Bloom, on their first night on a cruise ship vacation. The next night, Shirley falls to her death from the balcony of her stateroom. Michelle thinks it’s no accident, and Shirley’s philandering husband, Max Bloom, is the prime suspect. Max has a lame alibi and a million reasons for killing his rich wife. Instead of a relaxing vacation, Mike, Michelle, and Mike’s partner, Jason Dickson, get caught up in a murder investigation. They get no help from the ship’s chief of security, who wants to call it a suicide. When another body turns up stabbed to death, however, even the security chief can’t deny that there’s a murderer on board. The second victim was killed in Mike and Michelle’s stateroom! Now the chase is on to find the killer before anyone else dies on this Lethal Voyage.

You can pick up your copy of Lethal Voyage on amazon.com HERE. [link: http://getbook.at/lethal_voyage]Available as a Kindle ebook, paperback, or audiobook. If you want a personally autographed copy for yourself or as a gift, contact the author at https://www.KevinGChapman.com


[i] Kevin G. Chapman is an attorney specializing in labor and employment law and in independent author. His current project is the Mike Stoneman Thriller series. Righteous Assassin (Mike Stoneman Thriller #1), was named one of the top 20 Mystery/Thrillers of 2019 by the Kindle Book Review and is a finalist for the Chanticleer Book Review CLUE award.  Kevin has also written a serious political drama, A Legacy of One, self-published in 2016, which was short-listed for the Chanticleer Somerset Award for literary fiction. Kevin is a resident of West Windsor, New Jersey and is a graduate of Columbia College (‘83), where he was a classmate of Barack Obama, and Boston University School of Law.  Readers can contact Kevin via his website at www.KevinGChapman.com.

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Boost Your Cruise Fund With These Instant Saving Ideas

Ask any cruise-enthusiast (especially me) and they’ll tell you that cruising is the best way to see the world. You get to see the very best destinations, have everything you’ll ever need onboard your ship and get to enjoy a travel experience like no other. Once you’ve hit the open ocean, you’ll never want to see the world any other way. That’s exactly what happened to me many moons ago and after 9 months on terra firma (the longest amount of time I’ve spent on land in 10 years) I am MORE than ready to get back out into the world.

When it comes to funding your voyage, you could consider using your savings or cashing in your junior ISA (I had bonds as a child and cashed some of mine in for my first cruise) for the trip of a lifetime – click the link for more information on junior ISAs. You could even pay for your holiday well in advance via instalments, so you can spread the cost of your trip. 

However, if you’re thinking of going on a cruise, then keeping on top of your finances will ensure you have the best possible experience. Of course, that doesn’t always mean having the best cabin or the best view, it just means that you’ll get to fully immerse yourself on your voyage and not have to worry about your financial situation and any other unexpected treats you might want to spoil yourself with! In short, having a little extra spending money will go a long way. 

Here we’ll explore how you can boost your cruise fund with these instant saving ideas.

Sell, sell, sell! 

All those old smartphones, DVDs, books and CDs, furniture, old clothes and knick-knacks… if you don’t want them, someone else might! Gather together the items you no longer want or use and sell them online. You have numerous online selling platforms to choose from, so your items are bound to be spotted by eager buyers looking for a bargain. Sure, you might not make a fortune, but your profits could cover the cost of a day of treatments at the onboard spa! Or an additional shore excursion. I paid for my first cruise by selling various bits and pieces that I no longer needed, including some gold jewellery. Even now, I never dismiss things, if I think I can use them or sell them and put the money towards something else, that’s exactly what I do. 

See a penny pick it up

If your planned voyage doesn’t embark for several months in the future, then this tip could certainly boost your cruise fund. All those pennies and low-value coins we see lying around, whether it’s change in the car, coins in the depths of your handbag or notes down the back of the couch, whatever you find don’t dismiss it, put them all in a jar and you’ll be amazed at the amount you save. I put 5p pieces in a jar regularly and managed to save £100 last year, which I used on my Grand Voyage sailing.

Eat-in!

Maybe you don’t like cooking or perhaps you’re just a creature of habit, but if you have plans to eat out this week or in the foreseeable future – cancel them! Eating in and staying home will save you a small fortune and that money could be better spent on your cruise of a lifetime!

And finally, cancel those subscriptions

From gym memberships to online subscriptions, streaming services, monthly treat boxes – whatever you’re subscribed to, chances are you’re not making the most of it. So, why not cancel and save the money towards your cruise instead? Start by going through your accounts and see where your money is going each month – you might surprise yourself! This is one that I need to practice more of, as I’m a complete sucker for fried chicken and Indian food and when I try to recreate it myself, it’s just never the same!

Here’s to saving now so we can ALL splash out (literally) on our cruises in 2021 and beyond and wave goodbye to what has been an awful year for many industries, including travel. 

Partnered Post

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Posted in General Cruise Articles

P&O Cruises Extends Pause In Operations Into April 2021

P&O Cruises has extended the pause in operations into April 2021 in response to the current uncertainty around European ports of call.

P&O Cruises president Paul Ludlow said: “With hopeful news headlines clearly we do not want to extend our pause in operations any further than absolutely necessary, but given the ever changing guidance around international travel and the varying regulations in many European ports of call we felt it prudent to cancel these additional dates.

“In addition, as the final payments are due for these cruises very soon we felt it was the right thing to do for our guests.

“We are so sorry to disappoint those who were due to travel but really hope they will re-book for later in the year or for our new programme of 2022 holidays which went on sale earlier this month with strong demand, showing great confidence in cruising in the future.”

All guests with bookings on a cancelled cruise will be notified and will automatically receive an enhanced 125% Future Cruise Credit or alternatively a 100% refund by filling out a web form.

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Posted in Cruise News, P&O Cruises

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines Teases 2022 Programme With Early Launch Of Scenic Canada And Remote Spitsbergen Sailings

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has teased further details of its 2022 programme, with two brand new cruises available to book today: ‘Canada in the Fall’ and ‘Rugged and Remote Spitsbergen’. Guests booking early will also enjoy up to £250 per person to spend on board, completely free.

In June 2022, Balmoral will set sail on a 15-night voyage of discovery to some of the most rugged and remote landscapes of Spitsbergen, in the Norwegian Archipelago of Svalbard, including a crossing of the Arctic Circle to experience the eerie Midnight Sun.

An exceptional 19-night voyage to Canada is the second of the new cruises, with this exciting itinerary made possible by the impressive sailing speeds of Fred. Olsen’s new ship Borealis.

The ports have been specifically designed to offer guests exceptional opportunities ashore, taking in seven ports across three Canadian provinces, and ample opportunity to witness the wonderful autumnal beauty with national parks, forests and trails all within reach.

Those who book before 31st December will enjoy up to £200 per person to spend on board for the Spitsbergen cruise, and up to £250 per person for Canada.

Clare Ward, Director of Product and Customer Service at Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, said:

“These cruises are set to deliver some exceptional sights and experiences, both from on board and ashore. 

Canada is renowned for being one of the best places to showcase the beauty of autumn in all its glory, and these ports have been specially selected to allow our guests to witness this true wonder for themselves.

“From Sydney, guests can follow the Cabot Trail and take in the Cape Breton Highlands, explore the Forillon National Park in Gaspé, and, in Quebec, immerse themselves in the autumnal colours from Jacques-Cartier National Park.

“In Spitsbergen, Balmoral will really come into her own, with her smaller size allowing us to offer unspoilt views of many natural wonders, from sailing alongside glaciers and down narrow fjords, to the destinations themselves.

“I know our guests will be just as excited about this sneak peek into our 2022 programme as we are, with an on board spending offer which will enable them to get the most out of their holiday both on and off the ship.”

Details of the two new cruises are as follows:

Balmoral’s 15-night L2217 ‘Rugged and Remote Spitsbergen’ cruise, departing from Newcastle on 22nd June 2022. Prices start from £2,499 per person, with up to £200 per person in free on board spending money.

Ports of call: Newcastle, England – Olden, Norway – Cruising Nordfjord and Innvikfjord – Måloy, Norway – Cruising Nærøysundet – Cruising by Torghatten and Seven Sisters mountain range – Crossing the Arctic Circle –Cruising Trollfjord and Devil’s Jaw – Honningsvåg, Norway – Cruising by North Cape and The Horn – Pyramiden, Spitsbergen, Svalbard – Cruising Nordenskiöldbreen, Tempelfjorden and Tuna Glacier – Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen, Svalbard – Tromsø, Norway – Cruising by Black Glacier (Svartisen) – Cruising Nordfjord (Meløy) – Åndalsnes, Norway – Cruising Romsdalfjorden and Isfjord – Newcastle, England

Borealis’ 19-night S2226 ‘Canada in the Fall’ cruise, departing from Liverpool on 28th September 2022. Prices start from £2,999 per person, with up to £250 per person in free on board spending money.

Ports of call: Liverpool, England – Cobh, Ireland – St John’s, Newfoundland, Canada – Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada – Gaspé, Quebec, Canada – Baie-Comeau, Quebec, Canada – Québec City, Quebec, Canada – Port Saguenay, Canada – Cruising Saguenay River – Corner Brook, Newfoundland, Canada – Belfast, Northern Ireland – Liverpool, England

These itineraries follow on from two other 2022 cruises teased by Fred. Olsen earlier in the year: the 28-night ‘Black Sea Discovery with the Mediterranean’ sailing, also in September, and the 101-night World Cruise aboard Borealis setting sail in January of that year.

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines will release its entire 2022/23 programme for its new-look fleet in March.

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Posted in Cruise News, Fred Olsen Cruise Lines

P&O Cruises Iona To Feature 30 Bars And Restaurants, Menus By Marco Pierre White And Destination-Inspired Dishes

P&O Cruises new ship Iona will feature 30 bars and restaurants, new menus by Marco Pierre White; destination-inspired dishes and the “best burger at sea”.

Iona is also set to be home to new restaurants created exclusively for the ship including The Keel and Cow gastropub; Ripples gelateria and The Glass House serving a tapas menu designed by Spanish chef José Pizarro.

The Chef’s Table is also new and developed for Iona’s gala celebration nights by Marco Pierre White and Eric Lanlard. The menu features wine recommendations by Olly Smith who has also curated a wine selection for The Glass House.  

Guests at The Chef’s Table will be able to order gazpacho soup, incorporating P&O Cruises Marabelle Gin distilled on board; fillet of turbot with a viennoise crust; New England lobster mornay and classic beef Wellington. Biscuit glace, comprising of a hazelnut parfait, raspberry coulis and almond tuile, and dark and milk chocolate Tonka bean tear drop are just two of the desserts available.

Menus inspired by Spain and Norway, the countries Iona will visit, also feature on the new ship. P&O Cruises is collaborating with Spanish chef José Pizarro and Norwegian chef Kjartan Skjelde as well as Norwegian cook Marte Marie Forsberg to create dishes for Iona.

London, UK

José is bringing his talents to Iona with a tapas menu for The Glass House as well as creating street style dishes for Taste 360. Kjartan has created a bespoke six-course tasting menu exclusively for Epicurean while Taste 360 and Iona’s freedom dining restaurants will feature Norwegian dishes by Marte Marie.

Also new for Iona is P&O Cruises partnership with Snowflake Luxury Gelato to create Ripples gelateria which will offer gelato cakes; sundaes; customisable sticks; ice cream cookies and a gelato afternoon tea.  

Other highlights on board include:

·        The Limelight Club
A three-course meal and entertainment provided by some of Britain’s best-loved performers. Dishes will include –
–        H. Forman & Son Mojito cured salmon with cucumber jelly, lemon aioli, pickled cucumber and nori crisps
–        Pavé of line-caught sea bass with a pancetta, broad bean, shallot and pea fricassée, lemon and herb gnocchi and white wine parmesan cream
–        Dark and white chocolate mascarpone bomba, raspberries and amarula ice cream.

·        Anderson’s Bar and Library
P&O Cruises Marabelle Gin will be created in the world’s first gin distillery at sea.

·        Epicurean
Fine dining with exquisite dishes inspired by British and Norwegian ingredients to reflect Iona’s itineraries

Norwegian tasting menu at Epicurean
Regional Nordic flavours feature in the six-course tasting menu created by award-winning chef Kjartan Skjelde. Dishes will include –
–        Fillet of lightly smoked mountain trout with horseradish cream, pickled cucumber and puffed rye
–        Fillet of Jæren coastal lamb, potato cream mayonnaise, white onions, baby carrots,  hispi cabbage, jus gras, butter emulsion and chive oil
–        White chocolate espuma and cloudberry sorbet with meringue, caramelised white chocolate and cloudberries.

Eric Lanlard’s Afternoon Tea at Epicurean
The ultimate indulgence: master pâtissier Eric Lanlard gives his take on afternoon tea. This features savoury porcini and pancetta éclairs, pistachio petit choux with red berries, marble swirls red velvet cake pops and orange blossom and bee pollen scones.

Contemporary bars and restaurants:

·        The Glass House
Restaurant offering light bites, lunch and evening meals and a tapas menu designed by José Pizarro with wines selected by Olly Smith.

·        The Keel and Cow
Gastropub serving dry-aged steaks, British classics and The Prime Minister burger. This P&O Cruises signature burger “the best burger at sea” features an 8oz dry aged prime beef patty, Isle of Wight blue cheese, dry cured bacon, beefsteak tomatoes,  pancetta jam, onion marmalade, roasted garlic mayonnaise and pickled gherkins in a saltedbun.

Casual dining:

·        Vistas Café Bar
Café serving Eric Lanlard’s pâtisserie and sweet treats with Costa coffee and teapigs™ tea.

·        The Quays – Fusion; Hook, Line & Vinegar, Boardwalk Diner
A sociable piazza offering Asian food at Fusion, fish and chips at Hook, Line & Vinegar and American style classics including hot dogs and burgers at Boardwalk Diner.

·        The Olive Grove
Mediterranean restaurant with a menu featuring antipasti, paella, tagines and sharing platters.

·        The Beach House
Designed with families in mind and serving hearty grills and seafood inspired by Latin America and the Caribbean.

·        Taste 360
Burgers, hot dogs, oven-baked pizza and José Pizarro’s menu of authentic street food.

·        Ripples
Gelateria, in partnership with Snowflake Luxury Gelato, serving gelato cakes, sundaes, customisable sticks, ice cream cookies and a gelato afternoon tea. 

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Posted in Cruise News, P&O Cruises
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