Cruises have exploded this year, and this summer many lines have brought their entire fleet back into service. Others are resuming routes that were previously on hiatus. Expect new dining options, new destinations and plenty of offers to keep travelers coming back on board. Here are some of the latest updates and events from major cruise lines around the world for this summer’s busy travel season.
Seabourn launches the first expedition ship
Seabourn Venture will make its maiden voyage this month from Tromso, Norway as the first purpose-built expedition vessel for the line’s fleet of ultra-luxury vessels. With so many luxury lines branching out into expedition cruises, this is an exciting move for the cruise line and its loyal customers looking for all-inclusive cruises. It is also an indication of the changing profile of customers who are interested in more active adventure when travelling. The ship will rotate between the Arctic and the Southern Hemisphere, sailing to Greenland, Iceland, the Amazon and Antarctica.
Celebrity launches interior design partnership with Houzz
If you’ve ever looked at designing a space and wanted to recreate it for your own home, Celebrity Cruises wants to help. His new partnership with Houzz, an interior design platform for designers and enthusiasts to get inspired, allows passengers to purchase products that are part of his ship’s design to enjoy at home. They can “shop the look” created by well-known interior designers Nate Berkus and Kelly Hoppen from the line’s latest ship, Celebrity Beyond. Celebrity Cruises has created its own brand page on the design platform showcasing stateroom and public space products and is the first cruise line to make its onboard design elements available for people to purchase through such a platform.
Emerald Cruises develops luxury yacht destinations
As part of its growing list of destinations, Emerald Cruises expands sailing destinations for Emerald Azzurra and Emerald Sakara for the 2023-2024 season. New itineraries include visits to and around the Caribbean and Central America (including Panama, Costa Rica and Colombia), new stops in the Mediterranean and Adriatic (such as Sardinia, Balearic Islands, Casablanca , Gibraltar and the Canary Islands), and transatlantic voyages. In total, the cruise line will add 15 new countries to its roadmap.
Scenic Reveals Progress of Second Discovery Yacht
Although not fully completed, interested customers can watch the progress of Scenic’s all-new Discovery Yacht, Scenic Eclipse II, on a new time-lapse video. Scheduled to enter service in the spring of next year, the ship will sail from Lisbon to various Mediterranean and Scottish ports before crossing the Atlantic and between the two polar regions. In 2024, it will also add ports in Australia, Polynesia and Indonesia to its network. The ship, identical to her sibling Scenic Eclipse, comes from the line’s own shipyard in Italy, giving her greater control over the design and timing of her launch.
Celebrate Richard Branson’s 72nd birthday aboard Scarlet Lady
Be one of the privileged guests to join Richard Branson on board Virgin Voyages Scarlet Lady as it sets sail next week around the Caribbean with its famous founder on board. Richard Branson will celebrate his 72nd birthday surrounded by his beloved guests who can cheer him on by his side. Round-trip sailing from Miami to Cozumel will include a stop at the Beach Club in Bimini, and guests will have the chance to meet Branson himself. The one-time sailing departs July 17, which may not help future travelers, but is sure to excite long-time fans knowing he often interacts with his guests.
Silversea unveils 8 restaurants for new Silver Nova
Passengers on board the new Silver Nova, its 11th ship which will join the fleet next year, will offer eight iconic restaurants during its navigation. Options include the line’s signature French restaurant, La Dame, and SALT Kitchen, which bases its menus on each destination the ship sails to. Kaiseki will serve Japanese dishes as well as dishes from all over Asia, including Thai and Vietnamese. When it launches next year, it will also be the first cruise ship to be free of local emissions while in port.
MSC Cruises relaunches the gala evening
This previously suspended formal evening where guests join officers and crew for a lavish dinner, performances, photo ops and party is finally back. On pause for Covid-19, the cruise line has announced the return of the passenger favorite gala evening event this summer. The evening is free for all passengers, but it also includes special bonuses like offers on spa services and shopping. Live entertainment now has extended hours and nightclubs have reopened. So that parents can enjoy the evening, the children’s club has also extended its hours.
MSC Seascape adds new family activities
Beginning on her seven-night cruises from December this year, MSC Seascape will deliver 98 hours of live entertainment designed for families across 7,500 square feet of kid-friendly space. The cruise line wants to strengthen its family orientation with new amenities such as interactive game shows and new LEGO rooms for different age groups. Everything will be handled by the ship’s ‘corporate children’s entertainment manager’, a new position who will oversee the new facilities. In addition to the Aquapark, MSC Formula Racer and extended hours for kids and teens clubs, there are interactive opportunities like a “late show” designed for teens and a dance show designed by the same production company of the X Factor and Got Talent series.
Transformed Star Pride Debuts This Summer
Pride of the Windstar Stars is sailing again after a complete refit and expansion that complements the company’s trio of Star Plus class yachts that have received a similar update. In addition to increasing capacity from 212 to 312 passengers, the ship is more environmentally friendly with new engines, generators and advanced efficient wastewater treatment systems. New restaurants, a spa, an infinity pool, and expanded deck space were part of the update. Passengers are entitled to restaurants including a Spanish tapas restaurant by Anthony Sasso, one of the youngest chefs recognized by the Michelin Guide.
Princess departs year-round from Los Angeles
From next summer, Princess Cruises will add a new series of summer cruises from Los Angeles to bolster its already well-stocked network of sailings from the West Coast. Emerald Princess will operate 5- to 16-night itineraries during the company’s first-ever summer season to destinations including ports in Mexico, Hawaii and the California coast. With space for 3,080 guests and nearly 700 balconies, the new crossings will appeal to families looking for summer trips when the kids are out of school. The company is offering a special offer for the first week of launch until July 19 with only a $1 deposit required and $50 free spending money on board per person.
The Celestia Luxury Phinisi yacht heads for the Indonesian archipelago
This traditional Indonesian sailboat will debut next year sailing the Indonesian archipelago visiting ports like Raja Ampat, Komodo and the Spice Islands. Belonging to a brother-sister duo, Celestia focuses on intimate adventures aboard a small ship. This ship has only seven cabins and can visit some of the smaller ports in the region while providing a traditional sailing experience. Although the ships are only available for private cruises, they are small enough to appeal to intimate group events.
Regent Seven Seas unveils new menu for Sette Mari
The cruise line is very popular Restaurant Sette Mari gets a new fleet-wide menu, but not until late next year. It will launch with Seven Seas Grandeur in November 2023, but the rest of the six-ship fleet will receive the same updates. Based on the culinary team’s individual visits to various 16th-century farmhouses (masserias) in the Puglia region, the line came up with an updated menu. Dishes include zucchini alla poverella (zucchini sautéed in wine vinegar, mint and olive oil, cavatelli ai frutti di mare (a traditional seafood pasta dish), insalata di panzanella (traditional salad with crusty bread, onions and tomatoes) and branzino en agrodolce (a mild fish dish with olive oil and spices) among other delicacies.
Regent Seven Seas Grandeur takes shape
It’s not just the food that makes the passengers of the Regent Seven Seas salivate, but also a new ship that’s on the way. Company executives were excited to launch the new Regent Seven Seas Grandeur during a special keel laying ceremony at the Fincantieri shipyard in Ancona, Italy. Honoring a maritime tradition, three custom minted coins were placed in the ship’s keel to represent her sister ships (Seven Seas Explorer, Seven Seas Splendor and Seven Seas Grandeur). The ship will depart in November 2023 with voyages to the Caribbean and the Mediterranean. Celebrating its 30th anniversary, the company also launched a series of birthday trip cruises on each of his five ships.