Cruise News – June 27, 2014
Viking Star Floats Out in Italy
Viking, known for its river cruises, celebrated the float-out this week of its first ocean-going ship, the 930-passenger Viking Star, set to debut in spring 2015, with a season of cruises in the Baltic and the Mediterranean.
The all-veranda stateroom ship, with such innovative features as an infinity pool that cantilevers off the back, was moved from dry dock to water in a traditional ceremony at Fincantieri’s Marghera shipyard outside of Venice.
“Today is a proud day for our entire Viking family, as we are one step closer to launching a new era of ocean cruising,” said Viking Cruises Chairman Torstein Hagen. “Viking Star’s maiden season was sold out before she even touched water, which just demonstrates how enthusiastic our guests are for destination-focused ocean cruises.”
The ship was moved to an outfitting dock for final construction and interior build-out. Two sister ships, Viking Sea and Viking Sky will follow.
The Viking ocean ships borrow experience from the line’s successful river cruise operation, with destination-focused itineraries and excursions, beer and wine with lunch and dinner, and WiFi included in the cruise fare.
Ponder How Many Whos in Whoville? on Carnival Freedom
Carnival Cruise Lines officially debuted its new Dr. Seuss Bookville on Carnival Freedom – added as part of the ship’s recent multimillion dollar makeover.
In the Seuss-themed space, kids and their parents can hang out amid iconic décor and funky furnishings inspired by the popular books – and participate in fun activities including Seuss-inspired games. Bookville will also be featured on the new Carnival Vista when it debuts in 2016.
As part of the fleetwide Seuss at Sea experience, characters also pop up elsewhere including at a Green Eggs and Ham breakfast and in a Seuss character parade.
Just in time for the summer Caribbean season, the line is also debuting on Carnival Freedom its new Camp Ocean children’s program, with more than 200 ocean-themed activities.
Carnival hosts more than 700,000 kids a year, officials said.
Tauck Welcomes Savor
Tauck welcomed its newest river ship, the 130-passenger ms Savor, with a christening in Bingen am Rhein, Germany.
Like sister ship ms Inspire, launched in April, Savor has the unusual feature of eight 225-square-foot lower deck “loft” cabins with windows that open, among its accommodations. Dining includes the option of a casual steakhouse. On board are not one but four Tauck Directors, organizing tours and handling day-to-day details.
Savor will spend its first season on the Danube.
- Fans of the New York Jets will want to join players on the team’s first-ever fan cruise. The 4-day sailing is on Celebrity Constellation, embarking from Fort Lauderdale on March 26….
- The 2015 Grand World Voyage on Holland America Line’s Amsterdam, embarking January 5 from Fort Lauderdale, will visit 45 ports in 25 countries on six continents in 114 days (an early booking deal runs through the end of July)….
- Pearl Seas Cruises, a sister company to American Cruise Lines, launched its inaugural cruise from Baltimore on the brand-new, 210-passenger Pearl Mist. The ship will spend its first season on a series of cruises in the Canadian Maritimes and Great Lakes.
— Fran Golden