Royal Caribbean Returning To “All Adults Must Buy” Rule For Booze Package

October 4, 2017.

As previously reported, Royal Caribbean announced a ‘test’ of returning to their previous policy of requiring all adults in a cabin to purchase the alcohol drink package.  The cruise line changed that policy in 2015 and since then has been allowing individual adults to buy a drink package.  The test started on September 30 (all of 5 days ago) and it was claimed that it would run for eight sailings and only on Harmony Of The Seas.

So today, half way through the first week for the test run, Royal Caribbean announced quietly, via an edit to their website and by booked guests noticing it when they tried to buy a drink package online, that indeed, effective December 31, 2017, all those 21 and older in the same cabin will have to buy the Deluxe Beverage Package, or nobody can.

The new language from RoyalCaribbean.com states:

“Onboard, the all-inclusive packages are available for purchase throughout the voyage with at least 4 days remaining. Must be purchased for the duration of the cruise; prorated price based on date of purchase. Any guest wishing to purchase a Deluxe Beverage Package must do so for all other guests 21 years and older in the same stateroom, for sailings on or after December 31st, 2017.

All other beverage packages can be purchased by individual guests, however all packages are for single guest use and cannot be shared by multiple people.”

 

Norwegian Garners Several Beverage Awards & Accolades

July 20, 2017.

Following Norwegian Escape’s Head Mixologist Marc McArthur’s win at the Diageo World Class Bartender of the Year semifinals competition on June 20, Norwegian Cruise Line is once again in the spotlight for its outstanding onboard beverage program. Led by Wesley Cort, Senior Director of Restaurant and Beverage Operations, and Luis Ortega, Manager of Beverage Operations Development, Norwegian’s beverage team is celebrating the recognition stemming from several honors received in the first half of 2017.

2017 Diageo WORLD CLASS Bartender of the Year Semi-Finals

On June 20, Marc McArthur, head mixologist aboard Norwegian Escape, took home the gold in the semi-finalist round of the WORLD CLASS Bartender of the Year competition and was awarded the title of Diageo Global Travel’s Best Bartender in the cruise industry division.

In the competition’s Mystery Box Challenge, the bartenders were asked to create cocktails using several secret ingredients, provided just 15 minutes prior to the challenge. McArthur served up two concoctions, pulling inspiration from legendary public figures – Nelson Mandela and Princess Diana. For his first drink, inspired by Nelson Mandela, McArthur combined Zacapa Rum, passion fruit, peanut butter, green chartreuse, sweet vermouth and cardamom. His second cocktail evoked the distinctively elegant spirit of Princess Diana with Matcha-infused Tanqueray 10, fresh lemon, simple syrup, gooseberries and pink peppercorn.

In the Cocktails Against the Clock Challenge, the bartenders were asked to create as many unique cocktails as they could in just five minutes. McArthur bested the competition, meticulously executing six incredible signature cocktails – Zacapa Mai Tai, Winter Old Fashioned, Sherry Martini, Marilyn Monroe, Smoke n’ Fire and the Traquila – serving up his final cocktail just before time ran out.

McArthur will now continue on to represent Norwegian at the WORLD CLASS global finals event in Mexico City on August 20. He will compete against 56 top bartenders from around the world for the coveted title of WORLD CLASS Bartender of the Year 2017.

2017 BACARDI® Legacy Cruise Competition Bartender of the Year

Earlier this year, Norwegian Cruise Line’s Wade Cleophas bested competition from more than 2500 entries across 13 different cruise lines to win the title of 2017 BACARDÍ® Legacy Cruise Competition Bartender of the Year. The finals took place in Miami on February 13 in a live competition judged by a panel of experts from the beverage industry, held at award-winning restaurant Alter in Miami’s hip Wynwood neighborhood.

Wade’s winning creation – the ‘Legend Reviver’ – was inspired by classic cocktails with spices reminiscent of exotic destinations. The cocktail, featuring BACARDÍ® OCHO (8) ANOS, was mixed with star anise infused sweet vermouth, caramel/cinnamon syrup with drops of whisky barrel aged bitters and finished with a mist of Absinthe.  His perfectly presented cocktail was artistically finished off with a garnish resembling the sails of a merchant ship and the wings of the BACARDÍ bat. A key element of the competition was the requirement for finalists to promote their cocktail around the world.  In the three months that Wade was promoting Legend River Reviver, Norwegian sold almost 2000 servings of the specialty drink.

 

2017 Vista Awards Best Beer and Wine Programs

Rounding out Norwegian Cruise Line’s beverage kudos for the first half of 2017, the line was recognized as having the Best Beer Program and the Best Wine Program out of all hotels, cruise lines and casinos at the 2017 Vista Awards, held on Tuesday, February 28 during the VIBE Conference, the premiere on-premise beverage conference for beverage executives. Norwegian was the only cruise line honored at the awards.

VIBE Vista Awards recognize the top performers in the beverage industry through the creation, training, execution, management and ongoing positive results of beverage programs. Entries were reviewed by a panel of Johnson & Wales University beverage faculty, staff and alumni and were judged on positive beverage sales initiatives, efficient operational innovations and training and service programs producing high quality standards.

 

Princess Cruises Sip & Sail Cruise Promotion

June 20, 2017.

Sale Features Free All-Inclusive Beverage Package and Specialty Dining for Two

Princess Cruises is offering the Sip & Sail cruise promotion with free all-inclusive beverages, plus an early booking bonus offer of free specialty dining for mini-suite and suite bookings made before July 5, 2017. All six to 49 day cruises and cruisetours to destinations around the globe sailing Summer 2018 to Spring 2019 are included in the sale.

Guests booking balcony, mini-suite or suite categories will receive a free All-Inclusive Beverage Package for two people, plus reduced fares as well as free Unlimited Soda & More Packages for third and fourth guests.

The All-Inclusive Beverage Package includes any individual beverage item such as soda, juices, shakes and floats, bottled water, cocktails, spirits, wines, beers, specialty coffees and tea, up to $10 retail value, purchased at all bars, public lounges and dining venues. Additionally guests can enjoy discounts on bottles of wine purchased in the bars, dining room or in stateroom.

Guests can also book and receive these offers with a special reduced deposit of only $100 per person for first through fourth guests in a stateroom.

Note that guests not wanting the beverage package can opt for onboard credit instead.  Sailings of 6-9 days can receive $150 per guest. Guests booking sailings 10-12 days can receive $200 per guest. Guests booking sailings 13 or more days can receive $250 per guest. Mixing and matching the All-Inclusive Beverage Package and OBC is not allowed on the same booking. Both guest 1 & 2 must choose the same amenity.

Examples of Sip & Sail cruise deals include:

  • Alaska cruise — 7 days: $1,649 balcony stateroom; $1,899 mini-suite stateroom
  • Alaska cruisetour — 11 nights: $2,649 balcony stateroom; $2,949 mini-suite stateroom
  • Caribbean cruise — 7 days: $1,399 balcony stateroom; $1,699 mini-suite stateroom
  • Mexico & California Coast cruise — 7 days: $999 balcony stateroom; $1,249 mini-suite stateroom
  • British Isles cruise — 12 days: $2,949 balcony stateroom; $3,449 mini-suite stateroom
  • Majestic Grand Asia cruise —14 days: $2,599 balcony stateroom; $2,999 mini-suite stateroom

More information about the Sip & Sail cruise sale is available at princess.com/cruisedeals.

All prices are per person based on double occupancy. The “Sip & Sail” cruise deal runs from 12:00 a.m. PDT on June 20, 2017 through 11:59 p.m. PDT on August 31, 2017 and is available to residents of the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, Mexico and Bermuda.