Carnival Freedom Sails To Alaska From Seattle In 2021

October 24, 2019.

(Andy Newman/Carnival Cruise Lines)

Carnival Cruise Line will increase its presence in Alaska, deploying Carnival Freedom from Seattle beginning in April 2021, operating on week-long Glacier Route voyages, and joining Carnival Miracle which will operate 10- and 11-day Alaska cruises from San Francisco beginning in May 2021.

Carnival Freedom’s Week-Long Alaska Voyages from Seattle

Carnival Freedom will operate 21 Alaska cruises from the Port of Seattle April 27 to Sept. 22, 2021, departing every Tuesday.  Port calls on the week-long Glacier Route voyages include Skagway, Juneau and Ketchikan, as well as Victoria, B.C., and scenic cruising of Tracy Arm Fjord.  There’s also an eight-day cruise featuring Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, Icy Strait Point, Victoria and cruising Tracy Arm Fjord.

Prior to its Alaska program, Carnival Freedom will operate a 17-day Carnival Journeys Panama Canal cruise from Galveston to Seattle April 10-27, 2021, with stops in Colombia, Costa Rica and Mexico.  Following its summer in Alaska, Carnival Freedom will reposition from Seattle to Fort Lauderdale with a 17-day Carnival Journeys Panama Canal sailing Sept. 22-Oct. 9, 2021, calling in Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala and Mexico before launching a winter schedule of six- and eight-day eastern and southern Caribbean cruises beginning Oct. 9, 2021.

Carnival Miracle’s Two- to 16-Day Voyages from San Francisco and San Diego

Carnival Miracle, which launches Carnival’s first-ever service from San Francisco in March 2020, will return to San Francisco in 2021 to operate a summer schedule of 10- and 11-day Alaska cruises that visit some of the region’s most beautiful and popular ports.  Ten-day cruises call at Juneau, Skagway, and Icy Strait Point or Ketchikan, Victoria, and scenic cruising of Tracy Arm while the 11-day cruises include calls in both Icy Strait Point and Ketchikan.  The ship will also operate a series of 16-day Carnival Journeys Hawaii cruises.  The program also includes unique four-day long weekend cruises to Ensenada.

Carnival Miracle will also sail from San Diego in 2021-22 offering two- to six-day voyages visiting a variety of destinations in Mexico and Baja California, including Ensenada, Catalina Island, and Cabo San Lucas, as well as series of 15-day Carnival Journeys cruises to Hawaii. Carnival Miracle’s San Diego-based schedule runs from Oct. 3, 2021 to April 18, 2022.

Additional Information and Reservations

Reservations for these sailings open today. To book a sailing, contact any travel agent or call 1-800-CARNIVAL.

Royal Caribbean Unveils New Features For Odyssey Of The Seas

October 24, 2019.

Royal Caribbean International has unveiled new features set for the cruise line’s newest ship, Odyssey of the Seas.  

Odyssey’s highlights include the ultimate SeaPlex activity space that delivers a dose of adrenaline with new thrills, a little friendly competition and the most interactive arcade at sea. Adding to the mix, Odyssey will debut a reimagined Adventure Ocean where young adventure seekers can choose their own immersive experiences across an entirely new layout, while a new maxed-out teen lounge with gaming consoles, music and movies will provide endless hangout options indoors and outdoors on an exclusive patio. When it’s time to refuel, guests can enjoy the new Teppanyaki restaurant serving Far East flavors, and Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar with rustic Italian dishes and a contemporary flair. Entertainment across the ship will be punctuated by high-tech signature productions in the Royal Theater and Two70, where art and multimedia merge for surrounding, jaw-dropping performances only on Odyssey.

In November 2020, the ship’s inaugural year will kick off in the Caribbean with destinations like Curaçao, Aruba, Grand Cayman and Mexico on 8- and 6-night itineraries from Fort Lauderdale, FL.   Odyssey will then sail to her homeport of Rome in May 2021 and become the first Quantum Ultra Class ship to cruise Europe for the summer. Ashore, travelers can explore storied towns in Turkey and Greece, including UNESCO World Heritage Sites like the ruins of Ephesus, the ancient Acropolis of Athens, the classic Cycladic architecture of Mykonos and more. Odyssey will share a whole new perspective of some of the world’s most legendary shores from 300 feet above sea level in the iconic North Star glass capsule, boasting 360-degree views.

New Level of Play
It’s all about the journey and adventure when guests take on Odyssey’s top deck. The Quantum Ultra Class ship will introduce the next generation of Royal Caribbean’s signature SeaPlex, the largest indoor activity space at sea, where the whole crew can partake in pastimes together or solo. The most interactive arcade to ever sail will dominate the upper level of SeaPlex with VR games for individual and group play, augmented reality walls and floors for high-tech competitions and family experiences.

Travelers can feed their need for speed while dodging and dashing their way across a full-sized sports court with the only bumper cars at sea or soar from a flying trapeze. The space will also double as a glow-in-the-dark laser tag arena, pitting Yetis and Snow Shifters against each other as they battle for survival and control of the mythical ice city in Clash for the Crystal City.

Combining the best of Quantum Class with new Royal Caribbean favorites, Playmakers Sports Bar & Arcade boasts a prime location within SeaPlex, with TVs at every angle to cheer on the home team. Offering club-level views of the competition below and onscreen, sports enthusiasts will catch every play on the court and back at home. Gameday bar fare like buffalo wings, sliders and the signature Playmakers Burger, alongside ice-cold brews, will make for the perfect snack. Guests can also enjoy classic board games, step up to the most interactive arcade at sea, play trivia and pool. Also available is the Owner’s Box VIP area for an MVP experience.

Vacationers will max out memory-making moments, whether catching waves on the signature FlowRider surf simulator and feeling the freedom of freefall on RipCord by iFly – the skydiving simulator – or scaling the 40-foot rock wall. Adrenaline seekers can also defy gravity with SkyPad, the bungee trampoline experience that transports travelers to another time, place or planet using a VR headset.

Primed to Unwind
Odyssey’s vibrant, two-level pool deck will offer a variety of options to sit back and soak up the sun with two open-air, resort-style pools and four whirlpools, surrounded by plenty of shady casitas and hammocks. Nearby, The Lime & Coconut serves up two stories of prime pool-front views and vacation-mode libations, keeping the island vibes going all day and into the night. Guests can enjoy grab-and-go, authentic Mexican fare at El Loco Fresh, from tacos and burritos, to quesadillas and an array of fresh salsas.

For a splash-filled day, the youngest globe-trotters can head to Splashaway Bay, an aqua park that boasts colorful waterslides, fountains, water cannons and more. Adults can retreat to the Solarium, an exclusive space on the top deck, for some much needed “me time,” including swimming pools and whirlpools, a full-service bar, daybeds and hidden nooks for ultimate relaxation.

Teched-Out Entertainment
The global cruise line’s 27th ship will up the ante on Royal Caribbean signature productions, featuring unrivaled talent, immersive technology and unparalleled special effects. Fusing art and technology, Two70 boasts 270-degree panoramic windows with sweeping ocean views from an expansive open area living room, which transforms in plain sight into a 135-foot-wide and 22-foot-tall screen, captivating onlookers into another world with its Vistarama technology.  As day turns into night, the iconic venue at the aft of the ship becomes a multidimensional theater – where a troupe of six agile Roboscreens come to life in sync with music, special effects and multitalented live performers and aerialists – to create unimaginable visuals.

Guests looking to hit up the dance floor can head to Music Hall for an always-changing set list of live performances but not before grabbing a drink at the Bionic Bar. While some of the best cover bands take center stage, music lovers can dance, sit back and sing along with friends, or take it all in from intimate lounge spaces.

Diverse Dining
Culinary cravings will be met with options to please every palate. Never before seen in North America is Teppanyaki, the restaurant serving authentic oriental flavors cooked in one of Japan’s traditional styles. Whether ordering top-grade steaks or succulent seafood, the Far East dishes are prepared and served with a sizzle at the table. Also joining the lineup is Giovanni’s Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar, Royal Caribbean’s new take on its signature Italian trattoria. Inviting guests to gather for authentically rustic dishes, from hand-tossed pizzas fresh out of the oven and made to order, to charcuterie delights, the elevated menu caps off this “Sunday supper” experience with a wide selection of wines and limoncellos from many of Italy’s well-known regions. Travelers can also expect to find Royal Caribbean favorites, including sushi and sashimi at Izumi, hand-cut steaks at Chop’s Grille, the Chef’s Table epicurean intimate experience and imaginative cuisine at Wonderland.

Carnival Reveals Programming for First Sky Zone Indoor Trampoline Park At Sea

Carnival Cruise Line today announced additional details on the first-ever Sky Zone trampoline park at sea aboard Carnival Panorama, debuting this December in Long Beach.

Located on Decks 6 and 7, the two-deck-high facility encompasses more than 3,000 square feet across a 12-lane trampoline court.

Sky Zone will be open all day on sea days with late afternoon and evening sessions on port days. One-hour sessions will be held throughout the cruise and available for three different age groups – 6 months to 5 years; 6-14; and 15 and older.

During “toddler time” sessions, younger cruisers can participate in the bouncy fun, accompanied by an adult. The fee is $5 per child and $5 per adult.

Older kids can check out a “challenge zone” equipped with a climbing wall, balance/jousting beam, Sky Ladder climbing apparatus, gravity-defying dodgeball games and above-the-rim basketball experiences. The one-hour sessions are $12. Custom Sky Zone socks are included in the price.

There’s also a nighttime all-ages blacklight glow party for $18 and includes a custom T-shirt. All activities can be conveniently booked once on board at the Sky Zone kiosk located adjacent to the facility.

Sky Zone is one of many family-friendly amenities that will be featured on Carnival Panorama when it debuts in Long Beach Dec. 11 – the first new Carnival ship to be homeported on the West Coast in 20 years.  Also featured will be a massive WaterWorks aqua park, extra-roomy Family Harbor staterooms, a suspended ropes course, and the line’s Seuss at Sea program, part of an exclusive partnership with Dr. Seuss Enterprises.

Carnival Panorama will sail year-round seven-day Mexican Riviera cruises beginning on Dec. 14.

Carnival Corporation & Royal Caribbean Sign Memorandum of Understanding with Government of St. Lucia

October 22, 2019.

The MOU was signed during a ceremony October 21 at the annual Florida-Caribbean Cruise Association (FCCA) Cruise Conference & Trade Show in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The ceremony included (from left) David Candib, Vice President, Development & Operations, Carnival Corporation; Marie McKenzie, Vice President, Global Ports & Caribbean Government Relations, Carnival Corporation; Micky Arison, Chairman, Carnival Corporation; Arnold Donald, CEO, Carnival Corporation; Hon. Allen Chastanet, Prime Minister, Saint Lucia; Adam Goldstein, Vice Chairman, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.; Hon. Dominic Fedee, Minister of Tourism, Saint Lucia; Miguel Reyna, Associate Vice President, Commercial Development, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.; Russell Benford, Vice President, Government Relations, Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.

Carnival Corporation and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. today announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the government of Saint Lucia to form a joint venture to manage the existing cruise pier and terminal facilities in Saint Lucia, and to design, construct and operate a new cruise port on the island.

As part of the MOU, Carnival Corporation and Royal Caribbean and the government of Saint Lucia will establish a long-term concession agreement to formalize the terms and responsibilities for the joint venture to manage and operate the current cruise pier and terminal facilities at the Port of Castries.  Additionally, the joint venture will design, finance, construct and operate a new cruise port in Vieux Fort on the southern part of the island that will be able to accommodate the latest and most innovative ships in the cruise industry.

Prime Minister of Saint Lucia Honourable Allen Chastanet has called the signing of the MOU “historic” and “a major step towards enhancing Saint Lucia’s tourism product.”

 

Together, the cruise line brands of Carnival Corporation and Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.  account for 75% of all cruise ship visits to Saint Lucia. Under the new agreement, the joint venture would optimize the experience for guests visiting Saint Lucia while developing additional cruise infrastructure to support the industry’s latest ships and promote the growth of cruise tourism on the island.

Step One Dance Company, Postmodern Jukebox and Cantaré Coming To Mainstage on Holland America

October 21, 2019.

Holland America has transformed its approach to entertainment with the introduction of three touring companies on the Mainstage: Step One Dance Company, featuring works by leading contemporary choreographers; an exclusive license for the international musical phenomenon Postmodern Jukebox to create two unique shows just for the cruise line; and the latest addition, male vocal group Cantaré.

Holland America Line’s innovative Music Walk also is expanding to three more ships by spring 2020. Music Walk offers venues with distinct musical genres: classical and chamber music, chart-topping hits, rhythm and blues and classic rock.

Throughout the year, Step One Dance Company, Postmodern Jukebox and Cantaré will tour select ships in Holland America Line’s fleet.

Postmodern Jukebox — Bringing a Vintage Style Sound to Modern Music
Postmodern Jukebox is known for transforming modern hits into vintage soul, doo-wop and roaring 20s jazz renditions that are as popular as the originals. Holland America Line features its own iteration of this musical collective that rotates among select ships performing two shows that can only be seen on board the premium cruise line. “Bandstand” features modern hits performed as if they were recorded in the 50s & 60s.  “Speakeasy” re-imagines today’s songs as standards from the 20s & 30s.

Step One Dance Company — A Transcendent Dance Experience
Innovative and exciting, Step One Dance Company brings a multimedia approach to entertainment with performances that marry vivid imagery with contemporary choreography. Step One Dance Company, comprised of six elite dancers, presents works from notable choreographers who have blended high-caliber dance with technology to create three unique shows.

“Humanity” is a vibrant and energetic exploration of the human spirit though dance and music. Utilizing state-of-the-art theater projection systems to add a new dimension to dance, the show immerses guests in a dazzling compilation of segments that are a feast for the senses as performers interact with dynamic visuals on the floor and walls. “Resonance” fuses movement and sound as the dancers interact with imagery of musical instruments.   “Stages” is a three-act ballet featuring three couples in three different stages of their relationship, fusing contemporary dance with a brilliant backdrop told by three unique styles of dance.

Cantaré — A Quartet of Pop Vocalists is Latest Addition to the Fleet
In 2020 Holland America Line welcomes the return of Cantaré, a male, pop vocal group who perform intricate harmonies. Cantaré will perform two concerts. “I’m Your Man” features songs by some of the most popular male artists of all time, and “Classics” covers timeless songs from every era.

Performances From the Most Authentic Live Music Experiences at Sea
At Music Walk, memorable performances from world-class musicians fill each cruise with an unforgettable rhythm from four distinct genres with Lincoln Center Stage, Billboard Onboard, B.B. King’s Blues Club and Rolling Stone Rock Room. Guests can spend time in one place or enjoy several venues over the course of the night.

Through spring 2020, Holland America Line is adding the chamber music of Lincoln Center Stage and chart-topping hits of Billboard Onboard to Amsterdam, Volendam and Zaandam, while on Rotterdam, Billboard Onboard joins Lincoln Center Stage, which debuted earlier this year on the ship.

Beyond the Touring Companies
Enriching and engaging Holland America Line exclusives also take center stage, such as the BBC Earth Experiences live show “Planet Earth II in Concert.”

Carnival Debuts New Safety Video Featuring Shaquille O’Neal

October 16, 2019.

As Chief Fun Officer, Shaq Drives Home the Message that ‘Safety is Serious Fun’ with Engaging Discussion of Onboard Safety Guidelines and Policies

Taking safety as seriously as it takes fun, Carnival Cruise Line is debuting an entertaining and creative new safety briefing video that outlines its onboard safety regulations.

Produced with the important goals of getting and keeping guests’ attention and improving the knowledge of safety policies, it is being shown in all 34,000-plus staterooms throughout the fleet and captioned in English and Spanish, as well as in English with audio descriptions for visually impaired guests.

“Safety is Serious Fun” stars the line’s Chief Fun Officer Shaquille O’Neal, who appears in his nautical-themed “CFO office” and guides guests through the safety messages delivered by three Carnival crew members as they tour the ship and experience the dining, entertainment and recreation features that await the 5.2 million guests who annually sail with the world’s most popular cruise line.

Shaq is joined by Entertainment Team members Estevan Velasco-Romero of Clovis, N.M.; Katelyn Stillman of Kilmarnock, Va.; and AJ Tabaldo of Santa Barbara, Calif., who encounter colleagues – and even a few towel animals – along the way, all working together to ensure that guests understand and follow safety policies.

The new safety briefing can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/JP-hdWHBEcU

 

Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve Opening In November

October 15, 2019.

Photo Credit Conrad Schutt

This November MSC Cruises will welcome its first guests onto its new private island destination in The Bahamas, Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve. Today the cruise line revealed more island experiences awaiting MSC Cruises’ guests.

A few of the newest island experiences awaiting visitors include:

Feel a new Thrill

  • Deep Sea Fishing: Catch, Tag and Release – After a short boat ride, guests can reel in an adventure-filled day as they Catch, Tag and Release to learn about the different species of regional fish and how they migrate in one of the most famous fishing areas of the world. Gray Fish, the only tagging research center in The Bahamas, will help guests as they catch and tag their fish to report information on the specific catch. Once the fish caught and tagged, it is then released.
  • Rum Rendezvous (Adults Only) – Enjoy a scenic boat ride to a stunning Bahama bank where guests can enjoy a lively, adults-only atmosphere and pristine shallow waters while sipping on complimentary rum punch, surrounded by live music and dancing.
  • Ceclo Luxury Electric Pedalo Rentals – Explore or simply slowly drift for hours in the tranquility of the beautiful Bahamian waters on the newest invention on the market, the Ceclo the luxury yacht of pedal boats, with electric assistance ready for all your adventures and made of recycled champagne cork, wood, and aluminum.
  • Glow Night-time Stand-Up Paddle Boarding – Discover the marine life after dark and enjoy a calm evening paddle under a starry sky with a specially equipped stand-up paddle board, fitted with LED illumination that allows guests to glide on a beam of light across the calm waters of The Bahamas.

    Photo Credit Conrad Schutt

Fun for the Whole Family:

  • Ocean Cay Family Club – The whole family sets out on a great adventure across the island to help Captain Doremi save the island while learning about the environment and animal species living on the land, and how to preserve the island and oceans around them.
  • The Bahama Bank Escape (Family Tour) – This tour is fun for the whole family aboard a spacious double decker power catamaran. The captain and crew take families on a charming boat ride to Bahama Banks where visitors can splash around in the shallow tropical waters, enjoy sport activities and relax on the beach with complimentary local rum punch for adults.
  • Kids Beachside Stargazing Adventure – This fun learning activity for kids allows them to discover everything about the universe, planets, stars, time and space. Led by Captain Doremi, children will help a little star find her way back home to the skies through stories, games and riddles.

    Photo Credit Conrad Schutt

The Perfect Setting for a Touch of Romance:

  • Honeymoon Harbour Stingray Adventure – Interact with a variety of different ray species including the local friendly stingrays on an adventurous boat ride to Honeymoon Harbour where guests can also enjoy the gorgeous beaches and lighthouse on Gun Cay.
  • Sunset Beach Picnic – A romantic picnic on the beach awaits couples looking for a secluded experience while enjoying the sunset and blue Bahamian sea over a bottle of wine and picnic basket of snacks.

Starting November 2019, four MSC Cruises ships will call at Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve on different days – MSC Meraviglia, MSC Seaside, MSC Divina and MSC Armonia.

Carnival To Add Fourth Ship To Galveston

October 15, 2019.

Carnival Cruise Line announced today that it will have four ships homeported in Galveston, year-round, beginning in 2021.

Carnival said that Carnival Radiance will join the Galveston-based fleet in May 2021.  In addition, Carnival Breeze will return to Galveston from Port Canaveral, becoming the newest and largest ship to operate a short cruise program from Galveston.  Carnival Dream will shift to six- and eight-day Caribbean voyages while Carnival Vista will continue its popular week-long Caribbean cruises.

All Galveston-based ships and itineraries opened for sale today.  With these four ships, Carnival Cruise Line will carry an estimated 900,000 guests annually from Galveston.

Details on Carnival Radiance to Galveston

Carnival Radiance will launch a new schedule of five- to 14-day voyages from the Port of Galveston beginning on May 14, 2021.  On this route:

  • Five-day cruises depart Sundays and feature the seaside Mexican ports of Cozumel and Progreso or Costa Maya.
  • Three different nine-day options departing Fridays will be offered – one calling at Cozumel, Limon (Costa Rica), and a partial Panama Canal transit or a visit to Colon (Panama), another featuring Key West, Grand Turk, the private Bahamian island of Half Moon Cay and Nassau, and a third stopping at Grand Cayman, Mahogany Bay (Isla Roatan), Belize, Costa Maya and Cozumel.
  • Two eight-port, 14-day Carnival Journeys cruises visiting top destinations throughout the Caribbean, Central and South America and the Panama Canal will also be offered departing Oct. 24, 2021 and Jan. 16, 2022.

Carnival Radiance will undergo an extensive bow-to-stern $200 million renovation next year that will add all of the line’s food, beverage and entertainment innovations, bringing an exciting new option to the Galveston market. Its sister ship, the transformed Carnival Sunrise, debuted earlier this year and has quickly become a very popular addition to the Carnival fleet, which Carnival Radiance is sure to match.  The extensive 38-day renovation of the ship will add a host of new food and beverage outlets including Guy’s Pig & Anchor Bar-B-Que Smokehouse created by Food Network star Guy Fieri, Cucina del Capitano family-style Italian restaurant, Bonsai Sushi, and Caribbean-inspired RedFrog Pub, and the first Big Chicken restaurant created by Carnival’s Chief Fun Officer, Shaquille O’Neal.  All of the ship’s spaces will be transformed including the water park, youth facilities, retail shops, Cloud 9 Spa and a new Liquid Lounge home to Carnival’s dazzling, high-tech Playlist Productions shows.

Carnival Radiance will reposition to the Port of Galveston with a 12-day Carnival Journeys Panama Cruise departing Port Canaveral May 2 and arriving in Galveston May 14, 2021.

Fun-Filled Short Cruises to Mexico aboard Carnival Breeze

Carnival Breeze will become the newest and largest ship to operate a short cruise itinerary from Galveston when it kicks off year-round four- and five-day cruises from that port May 5, 2021.   The program includes:

  • Four-day long “weekend cruises” departing Thursdays and featuring a day-long visit to Cozumel.
  • Five-day voyages departing Mondays and Saturdays with stops at Cozumel and either Progreso or Costa Maya.

 

Longer Length Cruises from Galveston on Carnival Dream, Carnival Vista

Carnival Dream will shift to a new six- and eight-day cruise schedule from Galveston beginning May 8, 2021.

  • Six-day cruises visit Costa Maya, Cozumel and Belize or Mahogany Bay.
  • Eight-day cruises feature Key West, Freeport, Half Moon Cay and Nassau.
  • Carnival Freedom, which currently operates this itinerary, will be deployed to another homeport to be announced shortly.

Carnival Vista will also continue its popular week-long cruise program from Galveston with two different three-port, seven-day western Caribbean options, with stops at:

  • Mahogany Bay, Belize and Cozumel;
  • Grand Cayman, Cozumel and Ocho Rios or Montego Bay.

Sky Princess Officially Joins Princess Cruises Fleet

October 15, 2019.

 

Princess Cruises today took delivery of Sky Princess from shipbuilder Fincantieri at an official handover ceremony at the shipyard in Monfalcone, Italy.  The first ship designed from the ground up as a Princess MedallionClass ship, the 143,700-ton, 3,660-guest Sky Princess features an evolution of the design platform used for the cruise line’s previous Royal-Class ships.

The milestone handover ceremony was attended by executives from Carnival Corporation & plc including:

Micky Arison, Chairman of Carnival Corporation; Arnold Donald, President and CEO of Carnival Corporation; Stein Kruse, Group CEO of Princess Cruises, Holland America Line, Seabourn, Carnival Australia and Carnival UK, and Jan Swartz, Group President of Princess Cruises and Carnival Australia, Fincantieri was represented by Giuseppe Bono, CEO.

With the debut of Sky Princess, Princess Cruises marks the first time a ship has been purpose-built as a Princess MedallionClass™ ship. Featuring the complimentary OceanMedallion™ wearable device, MedallionClass vacations deliver an entirely new level of service and creates a vacation that is more seamless, effortless and personalized.

Considered a breakthrough in the vacation industry and a CES® 2019 Innovation Award Honoree, the OceanMedallion wearable device is complimentary for all guests and features leading-edge technology that delivers personalized service through enhanced guest-crew interactions, eliminates friction points and enables interactive entertainment.

Princess MedallionClass Vacations are resulting in high guest satisfaction scores, thanks to a portfolio of experiences specifically designed to enhance their cruise vacation, including:

  • Expedited Arrival – From curbside to poolside in a breeze: Personalization starts pre-cruise as guests become OceanReady™ before arriving at the port. Guests who arrive at the terminal having uploaded their travel documents (i.e. passports) to their profile enjoy a streamlined and expedited check-in process that gets their vacation started even sooner.
  • On-Demand Services – Food, beverage, retail orders and service delivered to your location: Using smart devices and stateroom TVs, guests have the ability to order drinks, food and retail items like sunscreen with OceanNowTM and have them delivered directly anywhere on board.
  • Family and Friends Locator – Finding travel companions and directional ship information: Accessible on portals throughout the ships and via guests’ smart devices, OceanCompassTM leverages the OceanMedallion to easily locate and chat with friends and family on board, as well as enables point-to-point wayfinding throughout the ship. OceanCompass guides guests throughout their journey, providing directional information so they can seamlessly navigate to their next point of interest.

Other innovative features of the Princess MedallionClass experience include:

  • Keyless stateroom entry: Access to staterooms is a seamless experience where each guest is securely validated as the door automatically unlocks. Personalized greetings, including loyalty level recognition and celebrations, welcome the guest on their door portal.
  • Interactive voyage timeline: Available on ship portals and via guests’ smart devices, JourneyViewTM is an interactive timeline that lets guests scroll through all of the events available on board during their voyage and bookmark activities they are interested in to their own personalized itinerary. Voyage itineraries are available as many as 60 days in advance, allowing guests to start planning before they leave home.
  • Wager-based gaming: On smart devices and on select portals via Ocean Casino™, lets guests wager real money on games including slots, poker, bingo, roulette, keno and lottery from anywhere on board.
  • Interactive game play: On portals located shipwide and on smart devices PlayOcean™ helps guests enjoy a new level of fun with interactive games, a digital scavenger hunt, customizable avatars and more. PlayOcean also transforms guests’ mobile devices into game controllers for interactive gaming on the massive Movies Under the Stars screen.

Sky Princess will start her inaugural season in Europe on a seven-day Mediterranean & Adriatic maiden voyage from Athens to Barcelona on Oct. 20, 2019. The ship will sail a series of Mediterranean voyages before debuting in North America on Dec. 1, 2019, for a season of Caribbean cruises from Ft. Lauderdale.

‘Top Chef’ Winner Kristen Kish Joins Holland America Line’s Culinary Council

October 15, 2019.

Holland America Line is adding “Top Chef” season 10 winner and acclaimed restaurateur Kristen Kish to its award-winning Culinary Council — a collection of elite, international celebrity chefs who bring global influence to dining experiences across the fleet.

Kish’s playful yet refined cuisine will be featured on the menus in the Dining Room, showcasing French and Italian traditions with a nod to her world travels and diverse upbringing. Kish’s dishes also will be featured exclusively at Pinnacle Gala, a new, luxurious pop-up dining experience in The Pinnacle Grill for cruises of 10 days or longer. The Pinnacle Gala will deliver an exquisite experience for guests to delight in an exceptional, multi-course, dinner event where the ambiance and settings are as refined as the cuisine.

Kish recently partnered with Sydell Group to launch her first restaurant, Arlo Grey, in Austin, Texas. The restaurant melds Kish’s precise technique and experience with a nostalgia for dishes from her upbringing, world travels and the bountiful ingredients of Central Texas.

Kish was born in South Korea and adopted into a family in Kentwood, Michigan.  She showed an affinity for cooking at a young age and attended the world-renowned Le Cordon Bleu culinary school in Chicago, Illinois.

Early in her career, Kish worked in many high-profile restaurants including Michelin-star Chef Guy Martin’s Sensing and Barbara Lynch’s Stir. Kish competed on Bravo’s “Top Chef” season 10, filmed in Seattle, where she won the coveted title, becoming the second female to win the prestigious competition. She went on to become chef de cuisine at Menton, a Relais & Chateaux restaurant in Boston, Massachusetts, and left in 2014 to travel the world and write a cookbook.

Kish was co-host of “36 Hours,” a Travel Channel show that partnered with The New York Times to bring the hit newspaper column to television. She also toured with her first cookbook – “Kristen Kish Cooking” – which launched in 2017.