Fred Olsen cruise liner, MS Black Watch at the Pier Head, Liverpool
Fred Olsen’s transatlantic Liverpool cruise liner Black Watch has scooped a string of awards voted for by passengers.
The ship, which will undertake a record 14 cruises from Liverpool’s Pier Head this year, topped three small ship categories in Cruise Critic’s prestigious UK Cruisers’ Cruise Awards 2015.
The 28,631 gross tons liner, which carries 804 passengers, was named best for service, best for shore excursions and best for value.
The awards are based on reviews submitted on the Cruise Critic website by UK-based holidaymakers who cruised during 2014.
Black Watch was built as Royal Viking Star for the now defunct five star-rated Royal Viking Line’s long distance ocean cruising, and will sail the first Liverpool – Canada transatlantic crossings since 1971 this year.
The spacious liner will undertake two return voyages from Liverpool Cruise Terminal to Canada in May and August, the first direct sailings to Canada since Canadian Pacific’s flagship SS Empress of Canada closed ocean liner services from her Liverpool homeport 43 years ago.
Nathan Philpot, sales and marketing director for Fred Olsen Cruise Lines, said: “At Fred Olsen Cruise Lines, we believe in providing the very best customer experience that we can on our cruise holidays, from start to finish. We are renowned for our ‘service with a smile’ on our smaller, more intimate ships, which is why 58% of cruise guests choose to return to the ‘friendliest fleet afloat’ each year – one of the highest repeat rates within the travel industry.
“We would like to thank all those valued cruise guests who voted for Fred Olsen, and we look forward to welcoming you on board with us again in the very near future.”
Black Watch’s cruise season from Liverpool begins next month with a 13-night sailing to the Canary Islands at Easter followed by a further 13 cruises, including a two-night Dublin mini-cruise in December, a 25 night voyage to the Adriatic and a journey through the Norwegian Fjords in May.
Her sister ship Boudicca was Fred Olsen’s previous Liverpool cruise liner.