Tui Explorer to join Thomson Cruises fleet next year

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Tui Explorer has been unveiled the name of the latest ship to join the Thomson Cruises fleet next year.

It will become the line’s largest vessel when it enters services from its homeport in Palma, Majorca in 2018.

Currently operating as Mein Schiff 1 for the German market, the vessel will be joined at the UK arm by Mein Schiff 2 in 2019.

Tui Explorer joins Tui Discovery and Tui Discovery 2 in continuing to introduce the Tui brand to UK ahead of the re-brand which sees Thomson disappear later this year.

Tui Explorer will run all-inclusive cruises with ten dining options including a new sushi counter and The Mediterranean, an area with a glass roof inspired by open air terraces and local tavernas which will house two inclusive restaurants – a pizzeria and tapas restaurant – plus the Hot Stone Grill at an additional cost.

New cabin types include 14 family balcony cabins that measure 20 square metres, sleep up to five people and have a balcony of up to 9 square metres, and a balcony cabin with more external space.

Standard inside cabins onboard Tui Explorer are 16 square metres, larger than any other standard cabin in the fleet.

Other features include a spa split into 11 different areas including a Finnish sauna with floor to ceiling windows, a couples room and two luxury treatment suites.

An adults-only sunbathing area called The Veranda will have padded sun loungers, pod chairs and day beds.

A new feature bar, Indigo, offers ocean views from the top of the ship and is home to a casino and nightclub.

Another new venue is The Lounge, complete with colour-changing bar and a brightly coloured piano to provide live music.

On sale later this month, Tui Explorer will sail four itineraries – Cosmopolitan Classics, Highlights of the Mediterranean, Magic of Spain and Mediterranean Secrets.

Ports of call will include Barcelona, the ports for Rome and Florence, Naples and Lisbon.

Thomson Cruises managing director, Richard Sofer, said: “I’m delighted to unveil the name of TUI Explorer, our biggest and most exciting ship yet.

“As part of our continued modernisation and transformation strategy, and our commitment to offering choice and flexibility, we’ve created a whole host of new spaces onboard to meet our customers’ needs.

“We’ve got ten restaurants and ten bars, as well as more onboard activities and spaces for families including an indoor cinema and a fantastic new Kids’ Club with children’s pool and slide.

“I’m also really excited about our new flagship entertainment venue, Indigo – a huge space with incredible ocean views, sat right at the top of the ship.”

The ship, which started life as Celebrity Cruises’ Galaxy in 1996, has a capacity for 1,924 passengers.

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Cunard and a compelling story of immigration

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The Three Queen’s in Liverpool.
Cunard Line has put together a new video of Micky Arison talking about how Carnival Corp. came to own the storied brand, and it’s worth seeing if you can get the opportunity. Among other things, it sheds some light on the immigration issue that is prominent in the current political debate.

The video begins with Arison reminiscing about coming to the U.S. on Cunard’s Mauritania. It was 1954. Arison’s father, Ted, who founded Carnival, moved the family from Israel to New York where he thought there would be better business opportunities. Micky, who was 5, recalls going to school in New Jersey and being driven along the West Side Highway past the trans-Atlantic liners at the pier.

Little did he imagine at the time, Arison said, that he would grow up to play an important role in the cruise industry.

Arison said he got the idea for a liner like the Queen Mary 2 after seeing the film “Titanic,” with the nostalgic, romantic gloss it put on the ill-fated ship. The 1997 film was the first film to gross more than $1 billion.

In 1998, Carnival bought 68% of Cunard for $425 million, buying the rest later.

Arison said it is often misunderstood that Carnival conceived of the Queen Mary 2 after deciding to buy Cunard. The reality is (one of Arison’s favorite phrases) that Carnival conceived of the ship first and only bought Cunard because It needed the historic brand to make the concept work.

Ted Arison came to the U.S. via Cunard when immigration was at a low ebb. It had been 30 years since the restrictive Immigration Act of 1924 had been passed “to preserve the ideal of American homogeneity,” according to a State Department history. It would be another 10 before the law was liberalized by Congress after President Kennedy’s death.

America was as homogeneous as it would ever be in 1954. Yet it still had room for Ted Arison, born in Tel Aviv when it was part of British Palestine. That’s to America’s credit.

Open immigration is a blunt instrument. Some immigrants may turn out to be criminals. Most are ordinary like the rest of us. But some, perhaps a disproportionate number, are extraordinary, like Ted Arison. Is there any doubt that the U.S. economy is better off with Carnival Corp. headquartered in Miami instead of Tel Aviv?

Josh Leibowitz, senior vice president of Cunard North America, said the Arison video wasn’t created with the idea it would be widely distributed. But if there’s a Cunard sales event in your town, it will probably be shown. If you make time to see it you won’t be sorry.

Norwegian Joy on the way to Shanghai!

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Norwegian Joy cruise’s down the river Ems

The Norwegian Joy begins its journey to China with the passage through the Ems

28 March 2017 . For the Norwegian Joy, the first cruise ship designed by the international shipping company Norwegian Cruise Line, designed specifically for the Chinese market, the Ems Passage has begun a journey to its Chinese home port Shanghai. On Sunday, March 26, the second ship of the Breakaway-Plus class left the Meyer shipyard in Papenburg and began its 14-hour ride over the Ems.

 The transfer of the 333 meter long and 41 meter wide Norwegian Joy represents another important milestone on the way to the transfer to the shipping company on April 27th.

 “We are very pleased that Norwegian Joy has officially started its journey to China,” said David Herrera, President of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings China. “As the first ship built specifically for the Chinese market, the Norwegian Joy will offer our guests a first-class cruise experience, and we can not wait to welcome them to the fleet in June.”

 The journey of the 168,800-ton vessel began around 9:00 pm when the Norwegian Joy passed the ship’s dock sluices with the stern, leaving only 1.2 meters of space on either side of the ship. The team of the ship was under the guidance of experienced shipyards and river controllers, as well as several navigation officers who were responsible for the bow and stern maneuvers. In addition, members of local authorities and other partners were involved in supporting the maneuvers.

 After the lock, the Norwegian Joy continued the passage with the stern ahead, which ensures optimum maneuverability. Prior to reaching its provisional destination Eemshaven in the Netherlands on Monday evening, 27 March, the ship passed further bottlenecks, including the Fries Bridge in Weener, the Jann-Berghaus bridge in Leer and the Ems barrage in Gandersum. Upon arrival in Eemshaven, the Norwegian Joy will take on board other equipment and crew before the trial runs start at sea.

 About the Norwegian Joy

The Norwegian Joy, currently under construction at Meyer Werft, is the first Norwegian Cruise Line ship to be designed specifically for the Chinese market. The name Norwegian Joy emphasizes the possibilities and experiences that the ship offers to guests, the promise to feel like in “paradise on the sea”. The new ship of the Breakaway-Plus class will accommodate 3,850 guests and will be commissioned in the summer of 2017 in China.

 The Norwegian Joy is designed to provide guests with an unparalleled cruise experience, equipped with onboard equipment tailored to the specific needs of Chinese holidaymakers. The vessel has a variety of VIP cabins and suites, including The Haven by Norwegian ® , the exclusive cruise ship-to-ship luxury cruise ship from Norwegian Cruise Line, which also includes a completely new 180-degree view deck, As well as the Concierge category, which offers guests VIP services and larger balcony cabins. There are also cabins specially designed for families, a variety of cabins with connecting doors that are particularly suitable for larger families, as well as a large selection of mini suites, balcony, outdoor and indoor cabins, many of which have a virtual balcony.

 The Norwegian Joy offers exciting and innovative board activities, including the first two-level kart track, an open-air laser-day arena, racing car simulators and interactive video walls in the Galaxy Pavilion, and two water slides reaching over several decks. In addition, the Norwegian Joy will have a park-like recreational area and the largest shopping center in the fleet, from extraordinary duty-free shops to shops with world-famous luxury brands.