December 9, 2020- 12:01 AM
Below are the mini-cruise news stories on ships sailing from Ports beyond New York. Stories below include new ship construction progress, ship sales, Itinerary changes, coronavirus updates, port of call news and more.
December 8, 2020 - Despite thorough cleaning and safety precautions a passenger has tested positive for COVID on the current Quantum of the Seas cruise. Passengers were quickly isolated to their cabins as the ship returned to Singapore, cutting the voyage short. Testing of the 1,680 passengers and 1,148 crew showed all to be COVID free except for the single case. Royal Caribbean also used contact tracing to focus on possible impacted people.
After 3 days of a 4 day cruise the ship returned to Singapore. Passengers are isolated to their cabins and this morning breakfast was delivered to all passengers in their cabin. Additional testing is expected to occur while passengers are on board as well as the 2 weeks after they disembark.
It is expected that the entire ship will be deep cleaned and sanitized to assure that embarking passengers will not be impacted. No details have been released concerning the next cruise which was expected to sail on Thursday.
This is a another set-back for the cruise industry which is trying to return to operation and instill confidence that cruising is safe.
December 7, 2020 - The newest offering from Emerald Cruises— ocean-going super yacht Emerald Azzurra—floated out this weekend at the Halong Shipbuilding Company in Vietnam. The float out marks just over a year until guests will be able to set sail on the highly anticipated 100-passenger super yacht when she debuts in January, 2022.
“We are incredibly excited to see Emerald Azzurra successfully enter the water as the next stage of her build, the completion of the interior, commences,” said Glen Moroney, Founder and Chairman of the Scenic Group, which includes Emerald Cruises. “Once again Emerald Cruises is looking to the future and building a game-changing vessel at a time when small-ship experiences are gaining popularity. We can’t wait for past river cruise guests and new customers alike to join us on board our very own ocean-going yacht in 2022.”
Emerald Azzurra is the first custom-built ocean super yacht launched by Emerald Cruises, and will set sail on January 28, 2022 for the eight-day Best of the Red Sea itinerary round trip out of Aqaba, Jordan. Cabins are still available on this inaugural cruise starting from $3,315 per person for an Oceanview Stateroom, or guests can take advantage of the Super Earlybird savings on a Balcony Stateroom from $3,769 per person.
Once complete, Emerald Azzurra guests will enjoy a small ship cruising experience with just 100 guests in 50 deluxe suites and staterooms—88 per cent of which include an outdoor balcony. The yacht also features an onboard wellness center (including spa, gym & sauna), three tenders and a Zodiac for shore landings. Three onboard dining locales give guests the opportunity to taste local flavors and savor cocktails while taking in the views. A marina platform on the yacht’s aft allows easy access to snorkeling, paddle boarding or swimming.
December 7, 2020 - Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings today announced a partnership with AtmosAir Solutions to install continuous disinfection air purification systems across its 28 ship fleet for its three brands, Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises, according to a statement.
Norwegian said the new air filtration system technology will feature continuous active COVID disinfection through bi-polar ionization in the air and on surfaces, an all-natural solution with no harmful chemicals, radiations or by-products.
"While it is impossible to completely eliminate the risks associated with COVID-19, the AtmosAir technology is one of the many investments the Company is making to enhance its already rigorous health and safety standards,” said Robin Lindsay, executive vice president of Vessel Operations for Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd.
December 7, 2020 - Scenic Group has announced the release of its new 2022/23 Scenic Eclipse Worldwide Discovery Voyages Collection. With an extensive program now covering six continents, Scenic Eclipse will visit 35 countries across 48 voyages and provides passengers with an array of diverse destinations. The 2022/23 Program offers enhanced Antarctica program and new voyages to Northeast Passage, Japan and Sea of Cortez.
In 2019, Scenic introduced the World’s First Luxury, Discovery Yacht, the 228-guest Scenic Eclipse.
December 7, 2020 - The Chinese authorities have confirmed that permission has been granted for the first two domestic cruise ships to resume service. After weeks of reports and rumors, it has been announced the first two cruises will depart on December 9 and 10, both sailing from Hainan province as a trial program.
The first cruise is set to depart on a four-day itinerary to the Xisha Islands in the South China Sea aboard the Nanhai Zhi Meng. The 24,500-gross ton cruise ferry has been operating Chinese cruises since the end of 2016 for Hainan Cruises. The ship normally accommodates up to 900 passengers.
A second ship, the Changle Gongzhu is also scheduled to resume cruise operations the following day. The 12,000 gross ton ship is a ro-ro ferry that has been sailing in the region since 2017. It carries approximately 500 passengers.
December 6, 2020 - St. Lawrence Cruise Lines has announced that it has been awarded the Safe Travels stamp accreditation ahead of the 2021 cruising season.
The Safe Travels stamp is an international symbol designed to help travelers recognize companies around the world that have adopted global standardized health and hygiene protocols - intended to ensure that travelers can travel safely, according to the cruise line.
The company said that the accreditation was the result of enhanced health and safety measures that were developed and enacted for its fall cruise schedule. The measures are specific to overnight small ship cruising within Canada, and include guest screening, reduced passenger loads, physical distancing, masking, and a ship-wide disinfectant program.
December 5, 2020 - The AIDAperla has departed Gran Canaria on Dec. 5 on its first revenue sailing March. According to reports, 800 people are onboard the 3,250-passenger ship.
The AIDAperla is sailing a seven-night round trip from Gran Canaria with calls at Santa Cruz de La Palma, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Fuerteventura, and Arrecife / Lanzarote.
December 4, 2020 - Dreaming of traveling to new places is common these days and now destination seekers can turn their dreams into reality with vacation options to the best of Europe in 2022 featuring a myriad of cruise and cruisetour options from Princess Cruises.
On sale now, the cruise line awarded “Best Europe Itineraries” by the Women’s Choice Awards offers 178 departures on 70 unique itineraries to 114 destinations in 30 countries. The March through November 2022 Europe cruise season features five MedallionClass ships and includes the new Enchanted Princess sailing in the Baltic on Scandinavia & Russia voyages for the very first time.
Cruisers daydreaming about exploring hillside castles in the British Isles, ancient ruins of Italy, the Blue Lagoon in Iceland or the colorful architecture of St. Petersburg can find themselves immersed in these local cultures soaking up the iconic sites, savoring delicious meals and meeting the friendly locals.
December 2, 2020 - Massive demolition has occurred and construction has begun on the new cruise terminal which will be home to Virgin Voyages in mid-late 2021. THe new terminal is being constructed at the far end of the port of Miami at the pier previously used for smaller day cruise ships which would sail daily to the Bahamas. The new pier and terminal will be expanded to handle the 110,00 ton; 909 foot long Valiant Lady and Scarlet Lady. Both ships are expected to start service from Miami to the Bahamas and Caribbean.
Here is a video which shows the work that has been done to date on the new facility. See The Progress On Virgin Voyages New Pier Facilities In the Port of Miami
December 2, 2020 - Norwegian Cruise Line has announced that the Norwegian Spirit will spend sail from Auckland and Sydney Australia starding in December 2021. Scheduled to arrive in Sydney for the 2021/22 Australasian summer cruise season, the cruises will be 10- and 12-day rountrip cruises.
December 2, 2020 - TUI Cruises was planning a 35 day Caribbean Cruise departing from a German port to warmer climates. The cruise which was expected to carry onlu German nationals and visit 9 Private Islands in the Caribbean was canceled when authorities would not allow the ship to embark at German ports.
The cruise reportedly had over 1,000 passengers booked on the Mein Schiff 1 departing on December 10th 2020 from Hamburg (proposed). The itinerary was to include nine days of visits to private islands in the Caribbean, with Christmas and New Year's Eve festivities on board. Travelers would have returned Jan. 14 without interacting with anyone apart from fellow passengers and crew since no transfers or flights were needed.
The Marseille-based French luxury company suspended its 2020/21 Antarctica season.
'Our teams are now concentrating on future routes for our ships, taking into account the fluctuating global context. When necessary, we shall adjust our cruises, itineraries and ship positioning. In the next weeks, we should have a vision of the situation that's as realistic as possible,' said Hervé Bellaiche, chief sales and marketing officer.
The French operator expects to resume Antarctica cruises in late 2021. In the mean time, Ponant is expected to base ships in the Med and domestic French Cruises.
Currently, the L'Austral, Le Lyrial, Le Champlain, Le Bellot and Le Jacques Cartier are docked at Marseille. Le Bougainville and Le Dumont d'Urville are at Caen; In French Polynesia, Le Boréal is alongside in Raiatea, while Paul Gauguin and Le Soléal are docked at Papeete; Le Lapérouse is in drydock in Singapore, and the emblematic Le Ponant is in Genoa for refurbishment at San Giorgio del Porto.
Each docked ship has about 20 people on board for maintenance.
November 30, 2020 - The Caribbean Princess will anchor Princess Cruises' 2022 summer program in the Caribbean, sailing itineraries from Port Everglades.
The ship, a MedallionClass ship, returns to Ft. Lauderdale from April through July 2022 to sail on seven- and 14-day cruises to the Eastern and Western Caribbean with 25 sail dates to choose from.
November 30, 2020 - Swan Hellenic and Tillberg Design of Sweden have released a virtual tour video unveiling the line's new cruise ships that are currently being built at Helsinki Shipyard.
The first luxury, expedition ship for Swan Hellenic will be names the SH Minerva. -- named in honor of the former Swan Hellenic's sole ship Minerva. The ship will be launched in the winter of 2021, with the second due for delivery in the spring of 2022. The 10,500-ton polar ice-class vessel with extra-large stabilizers is being constructed in Finland at the Helsinki Shipyard Oy.
With 76 cabins and suites across four categories, the majority with balconies, SH Minerva has a high crew to passenger ratio and is aimed at replicating the personal service and immersive cultural itineraries provided by the original brand with updates reflected in the all-new vessel.
November 30, 2020 - Atlas Ocean Voyages today announced it will operate a charter flight for its 2021-2022 Antarctic expeditions. The company said it is chartering a private wide-body jet to bring guests from the United States to Ushuaia, Argentina, where they will embark World Navigator. Atlas’ private charter jet service shortens the travel time it takes for guests to reach and return from the Antarctic embarkation port and avoids the layovers and inconvenient scheduling, which are common with commercial routes, the company said.
Guests will also enjoy Atlas’ elegant and engaging service as soon as they board the private jet, all part of Atlas’ All Inclusive All the Way commitment, in which complimentary, round-trip air travel and more is always included. The World Navigator will offer 12 departures on nine-night itineraries to the Antarctic Peninsula, starting Nov. 19, 2021.
“Antarctica is the ultimate bucket-list destination and Atlas Ocean Voyages is innovating the industry again by greatly reducing the transit time for North American travelers,” said Atlas’ President Alberto Aliberti. “And our guests will enjoy Atlas’ engaging and enjoyable ambience as soon as they board our private charter jet. This innovation is part of Atlas’ All Inclusive All the Way commitment, in which we take care of the details and make it more convenient and seamless for our guests to enjoy Atlas’ once-in-a-lifetime experiences."
Guests of World Navigator’s Antarctica itineraries enjoy included, complimentary air travel from 16 major U.S. and Canada gateways. Guests will connect at Orlando, Florida, with Atlas’ private charter wide-body jet, which brings guests directly to meet World Navigator at Ushuaia. The direct service trims off at least a day’s travel time off flying from North America, the company said. Upon arrival at Ushuaia, guests will be escorted through immigration and transferred to World Navigator, while their checked luggage is delivered to their suites and staterooms. At the conclusion of their luxury expedition, guests will be hosted at a Patagonian Gaucho ranch for a farewell meal and experience, prior to boarding Atlas’ jet for home.
November 29, 2020 - The Karnika, most recently operating for now shut down Jalesh Cruises, has been beached for scrapping in India.
Targeting the Indian source market, Jalesh Cruises took delivery of the Karnika in Singapore in March 2019 as the vessel wrapped up her P&O Australia career as the Pacific Jewel. The ship was originally launched as the Crown Princess for Princess Cruises, but also served as the A'Rosa Blu for Arosa Cruises, AIDAblu for AIDA and Ocean Village Two before heading to P&O Australia as the Pacific Jewel, and then to Jalesh.
November 28, 2020 There is more construction progress on the Odyssey of the Seas as Royal Caribbean International's latest megaship left the covered building hall at Meyer Werft on Saturday.
This is a key milestone in the construction progress of the Quantum-Ultra class ship, as now the ship will be positioned at the yard's outfitting pier and most work will now turn to finishing hotel items aboard the ship.
The Odyssey of the Seas is a sister to the China-based Spectrum of the Seas, and is due for delivery from Royal Caribbean this coming spring.
November 27, 2020 As part of a restructuring plan submitted to Spanish authorities, Pullmantur could be back and sailing as soon as late 2021 with two former Celebrity Millennium class ships.
The Pullmantur Spanish cruise brand, part of a joint venture between Royal Caribbean Group and Springwater Capital, filed for insolvency earlier this year. Its ships have since been or will be scrapped. Currently the cruise line is attempting a comeback and is in talks to pick up two Celebrity ships if the plan is green lighted.
Documents show that Royal Caribbean and Pullmantur have come to a financing deal to continue operations with a new business plan, and future cruise credit program for impacted Pullmantur guests, which could be accommodated on Royal Caribbean or Celebrity Cruises brands.
November 26, 2020 Royal Caribbean International's new Odyssey of the Seas received her podded propulsion units this week at Meyer Werft, the shipyard building the Quantum-Ultra class vessel.
The German shipyard mounted the huge propulsion units to the aft of the ship as it nears its completion and float out date.
The 4,200-passenger Royal Caribbean ship is due to enter service this coming spring, delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The ship is scheduled for a debut season in Europe home-porting in Civitavecchia and sailing in the Mediterranean. Her debut in the North American market comes next winter sailing from Port Everglades on six- and eight-night Eastern and Western Caribbean cruises.
November 26, 2020 Lofoten is slated to leave the Hurtigruten fleet in 2021 and become a training ship.
Hurtigruten announced on Thursday it has signed a letter of intent with the Norway-based educational foundation Maritim videregående skole Sørlandet (Sørlandet’s Maritime High School) for the sale of the classic vessel. The 151-bed ship is due to welcome her first students in August 2021.
Through the sale agreement, Hurtigruten has reserved the rights to charter MS Lofoten from the foundation during periods outside the school year. Hurtigruten also announced it is looking into launching one or more Lofoten farewell voyages on the Norwegian coast in spring 2021,
November 25, 2020 - Ponant has announced a new itinerary for guests to see the total solar eclipse on December 4, 2021 from the Weddell Sea, which is said to be the only area in the world where the solar eclipse will be 100 percent visible.
Departing on November 30, 2021, the 15-day itinerary aboard Ponant's newest ship, Le Commandant-Charcot, will offer a once-in-a-lifetime experience with rates starting at $17,790 per person based on double occupancy, including round-trip flights to and from Santiago and Ushuaia. A 30 percent Ponant Bonus offer is also available on bookings now.
Departing from Ushuaia, Le Commandant-Charcot will sail through the Drake Passage, before arriving to the Weddell Sea ice pack on December 4. Guests will disembark onto the ice pack to witness this natural phenomenon as the moon passes between Earth and the sun.