News Archive - September 2012

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9-26-12 Norwegian Breakaway to Offer Premium Spa Experience Norwegian Breakaway will redefine relaxation and fitness at sea when the ship launches in late April 2013, featuring an expansive spa with the first-ever salt room at sea and state-of-the-art fitness facility offering a variety of exciting and innovative fitness options. The combined spa and fitness area spans two decks, encompassing more than 23,000 square feet.

Offering the ultimate in indulgent experiences, Norwegian Breakaway's tranquil Mandara Spa and thermal suite will offer guests the perfect respite from the hustle and bustle of New York City and will feature the first-ever salt room at sea. Popular in top spas around the world, salt room therapy has been proven to alleviate respiratory and skin ailments, strengthen the immune system, promote better sleep and have a long-term positive impact on overall lung function. Spa guests visiting the Salt Room will be immersed in a dramatic grotto setting as they enjoy this unique, indulgent and beneficial spa experience. The tranquil thermal suite also offers guests spectacular unobstructed views of the ocean, the opportunity to melt away on one of the 13 heated loungers, vitality pool, whirlpools, sauna, solarium and steam room, along with a full-service salon and barber shop.

The 22 treatment rooms will feature more than 50 signature services for both men and women including Elemis signature facials such as the luxurious "24 Karat Gold Facial," massages such as the Thai Herbal Poultice Massage, the Bamboo Massage and the FreestyleTM Massage; and two bliss(r) services: the bliss(r) triple oxygen treatment and the bliss(r) fatgirlslim. Norwegian Breakaway will also offer acupuncture, teeth whitening and cosmetic medical treatments, performed by a licensed medi-spa doctor, such as Botox Cosmetic, Dysport, Restylane and Perlane.

The full service salon will offer hair, nail, waxing and special kid-friendly services. The area also features a full service Barber Shop, exclusively for men, offering treatments including haircuts and traditional warm shaves.

Fitness enthusiasts and active New Yorkers will delight in the variety of cutting-edge fitness programs offered on board Norwegian Breakaway. Inspired by an "urban New York City playground," guests can choose from a range of innovative fitness options to really get their heart pumping. The ship will feature the first-ever Nexersys(r) interactive fight training modules at sea, offering guests the opportunity to engage in high-intensity, interval training against an avatar, through the use of a simulator. Boxing lovers will also enjoy Norwegian's all new "Freestyle Fight Klub," which combines Nexersys(r) training with a cardio boxing class, utilizing the fitness center's 12 heavy bags.

Those who prefer biking will delight in the first-ever "Black Light Spinning" class at sea. Guests will jump on their spinning bike and pedal away to the hottest music in a room lit entirely by black lights and neon graffiti art - giving riders a once-in-a lifetime adrenaline rush. The fitness center will also offer a variety of all-new low-impact classes such as "Spirals," a Pilates-inspired class that utilizes weighted balls for added resistance; and "Chi Balls," a group class inspired by traditional Chinese medicine, combining elements of yoga, tai chi and meditation that completely exercise both the mind and body. Additional fitness offerings include TRX, the biggest fitness phenomenon of 2012, kettle bell training, yoga, Pilates, reformers and body sculpting boot camp style classes. Guests will also have the opportunity to participate in a fitness class developed by the Rockettes, one of New York's most illustrious and beloved icons, who will christen Norwegian Breakaway as the official Godmothers. Personal training sessions will also be available, along with nutritional consultations and metabolic testing.

Guests who prefer to workout independently will enjoy the latest Technogym(r) cardio equipment and weights. All cardio equipment synchs to iPod music devices and features a large, HD screen from which guests can watch television, follow a set training program or navigate the playlist on their iPod.

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9-20-12 Carnival Offers New Orleans a Safe Halloween Experience

Tickets are now on sale for Boo at the Zoo Presented by Carnival Cruise Lines!

The annual Audubon Zoo Halloween event for children up to age 12 features trick-or-treat houses with candy, a Ghost Train, a haunted house (scary and non-scary), games with prizes and entertainment and even more fun from Carnival Cruise Lines. All games and treats are free with $17 admission (for children and adults), excluding concessions. Tickets are now available at AudubonInstitute.org or at any Audubon attraction ticket window.

Boo at the Zoo Presented by Carnival Cruise Lines will be held on four nights over two weekends including: Friday, October 19 and Saturday, October 20, Friday, October 26 and Saturday, October 27 from 5:00-9:00PM each night. To ensure that each little ghost and goblin has the best possible experience, a limited number of tickets will be sold for each evening. Those interested in attending are encouraged to order tickets early for this highly popular, often sold-out annual event.

Welcome Aboard, Carnival Cruise Lines -- Children's Hospital and Audubon Zoo are proud to announce Carnival Cruise Lines, a long-standing supporter of New Orleans and the local community, as the presenting sponsor of Boo at the Zoo. New Orleans' leading cruise line will bring its signature brand of fun for all to the event, with exciting family-friendly activities and entertainment including a jack-o-lantern-filled Fun Ship replica nearly 70 feet long, pumpkin carving creations, children's decoration stations and tropical-themed treats. Carnival, which offers 4-, 5-, and 7-day voyages year-round from New Orleans, next month will welcome back Carnival Conquest from a two-week dry dock with a host of exciting new dining, bar and entertainment options as part of the company's Fun Ship 2.0 initiative.

"We're thrilled to partner with Children's Hospital and Audubon Zoo, two terrific organizations serving the families of New Orleans and the Gulf area," said Jim Berra, chief marketing officer for Carnival Cruise Lines. "Giving back to our homeport communities is extremely important to us and at this year's Boo at the Zoo event, we look forward to providing everyone a Halloween-themed taste of the fun and excitement our guests experience aboard a Carnival cruise - all while supporting a great cause."

New to Boo -- Visitors can enjoy many new features this year:

  • Carnival Cruise Lines welcome booth offering the first "treats" of the night
  • A spectacular giant Carnival cruise ship Halloween display and light show
  • Perfect a Perfect Pumpkin the Carnival Way decorating stations

    Three entertainment stages:

    • Carnival Cruise Lines performers on the Capital One Stage
    • Local favorites Papillion, Johnette Downing and Dennis & Co. in the Toddler Area in Audubon Zoo's Cool Zoo (Note: no water will be running)
    • Star Wars performers return at the Shell Wildlife Theater
    • Zombie-themed Ghost Train Ride
    • Elephant shows until dusk
    • Mascot appearances and activities courtesy of the New Orleans VooDoo Arena Football League team
    • Videogaming Experience by Games2U Nola (October 26 and 27 only)
    • Family photos by Lakeside Camera Photoworks for $6
    • New Orleans Hornets basketball team's Mathmobile and Bookmobile
    • A Haunted Maze returns by a-MAZE-ing
    • Included in admission: Dinosaur Adventures exhibit and Endangered Species Carousel!
    • Expanded areas for games and activities

    Event Information at a Glance:

    • Ticket prices are $17 per person (adult or child). Handling fees apply.
    • Adults must purchase tickets as well as all children over the age of 12 months.
    • Children under 12 months of age are admitted free.
    • Adult and children tickets are the same price.
    • Event is from 5:00-9:00 PM. Ticket holders may enter at any time during event hours.
    • A ticket is required for each person to be admitted. Event is held rain or shine.
    • Boo at the Zoo Presented by Carnival Cruise Lines is a fundraiser for Children's Hospital and Audubon Zoo. Should a ticket holder be unable to attend, the purchase should be considered a donation. There will be no refunds nor will tickets be honored at another time.
    • No outside food and beverages allowed.
    • Please note that the Zoo is not open during Boo at the Zoo Presented by Carnival Cruise Lines.
    • A special bag will be distributed to each child upon admission for trick or treating throughout the event, so there's no need to bring additional bags.

    NOTE: GHOST TRAIN RIDE MAY CLOSE AS EARLY AS 8 PM DEPENDING ON VOLUME OF GUESTS WAITING! Train ride can be scary for children under 8 years of age. Tickets will be honored ONLY for the date purchased. Those ticket holders attempting to enter on another night will be not be allowed entry.

    Audubon Zoo will close at 3 pm each day to prepare for the evening event.

    Tickets can be purchased online at AudubonInstitute.org or at any Audubon attraction ticket window. A "print at home" option allows tickets to be e-mailed and printed from any computer. Tickets also can be placed at Will Call. No tickets will be mailed.

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    9-18-12 New York's "Rockettes" to Christen Norwegian Breakaway

    Norwegian Cruise Lines announces partnership with the Rockettes, the Radio City Christmas Spectacular and Radio City Music Hall. Members of the legendary New York dance company will be part of the onboard guest experiences for select cruises.

    NEW YORK - September 18, 2012 - Norwegian Cruise Line and MSG Entertainment announced today that the Rockettes, one of New York's most illustrious and beloved icons, will christen Norwegian Breakaway as the official Godmothers, further strengthening the ship's strong ties to New York. The christening ceremony will take place in New York City on May 8, 2013 on board Norwegian Breakaway, the largest ship to homeport year-round in New York. The partnership with the Rockettes will include Norwegian Cruise Line as the designated "Official Cruise Line" of the Rockettes and Radio City Music Hall, and as the "Official Partner" of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular. As part of their role as Godmothers, two Rockettes will sail aboard the first six sailings of Norwegian Breakaway, beginning May 12, 2013, and the first sailing of each month thereafter, taking part in special events for guests to enjoy.

    "Norwegian Breakaway is being designed as New York's ship and we want everyone to know that this is the "must-sail" cruise ship from New York in 2013 and beyond," said Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line's chief executive officer. "I strongly believe that the Rockettes, one of the most beloved and recognizable New York icons, are the perfect choice to serve as the ship's Godmothers. The Rockettes not only epitomize New York, they are known as strong role models and talented stars. We couldn't be more pleased to have these renowned dancers as the Godmothers of New York's ship, Norwegian Breakaway."

    "We are thrilled to announce our partnership with Norwegian Cruise Line as we bring together three of our iconic New York based properties in the MSG Entertainment portfolio, Radio City Music Hall, the Radio City Christmas Spectacular and the legendary Rockettes," said Melissa Ormond, president, Madison Square Garden Entertainment. "This signature partnership will provide Norwegian Cruise Line with unprecedented access to the Rockettes, Radio City and the Christmas Spectacular, providing their customers an opportunity to experience firsthand these New York icons. The Rockettes have been beloved by millions of fans for the past 85 years in New York and it is such an honor to celebrate their legacy as the official Godmothers of the largest ship ever to homeport in New York City."

    The larger partnership across the MSGE properties, Radio City Music Hall, the Radio City Christmas Spectacular and the Rockettes, will create expansive brand exposure for Norwegian Cruise Line at Radio City Music Hall, including onsite venue presence during the 2012 production of the Christmas Spectacular. Guests attending this year's Christmas Spectacular at Radio City Music Hall can participate in the "Spectacular Sweeps," a sweepstakes that can be entered right from their seats with the opportunity to win one of two cruises for a family of four on Norwegian Breakaway.

    Norwegian Cruise Line will have a year-round display in Radio City Music Hall's Grand Lounge that features an 11-foot replica of Norwegian Breakaway, along with information on the ship's unique attributes, entertainment, dining, destinations and more.

    Onboard Norwegian Breakaway, the Rockettes, with their unparalleled grace, athleticism and precision technique that has made them part of the fabric of New York City for 85 years, will be showcased with a variety of offerings, including a historical retrospective in the ship's library, exclusive fitness class designed by the Rockettes, featured beverages and more. On select sailings, guests will have the exclusive opportunity to meet two of the Rockettes. Sailing on the first six cruises from New York, as well as the first sailing of every month, two Rockettes will offer special fitness classes, photo opportunities, meet and greet speaker series and more.

    "Having two Rockettes on board select sailings is going to be a very special opportunity for our guests to have more interaction with these incredibly talented and dynamic women," added Sheehan. "This truly takes the role of Godmother to a new level as the Rockettes will be a special part of Norwegian Breakaway's unique cruising experience."

    Starting with their inaugural New York City performance in 1927, the Rockettes have wowed audiences for the last 85 years. From appearances on the Tony Awards, Project Runway, Dancing with the Stars and the Super Bowl Halftime Show to Presidential inaugurations, the Rockettes are the epitome of teamwork and the embodiment of the belief that "together we're better." Each dancer achieved their lifelong dream of becoming a Rockette through hard work, determination, dedication and dreaming big. Known for their rich history, unrivaled talent, strength, dynamism, precision and athleticism, the Rockettes have become one of the nation's most beloved icons. As the stars of the annual Christmas Spectacular production, the Rockettes entertain more than one million people each year and have played to 75 different cities across the country with the national touring production.

    Known as the showplace of the nation, Radio City Music Hall has hosted some of the biggest names in entertainment and music since it opened its doors on December 27, 1932. More than 300 million people have come to the Music Hall to enjoy stage shows, movies, concerts and special events, as well as the annual Christmas Spectacular production. The 2012 edition of the Christmas Spectacular invites audiences to take part in the Rockettes Celebration! This year's production commemorates 85 years of the past, present and future of the Rockettes featuring dazzling dance numbers, beloved favorites, breathtaking special effects and a brand new showcase featuring the Rockettes' most extraordinary costumes through the years, alongside beloved favorites that have been in the show since its inception.

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    9-17-12 Celebrity Reflection in North Sea after Shipyard Conveyance Celebrity Cruises' highly-anticipated Celebrity Reflection has left the Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg, Germany, and is sailing to the North Sea. The 1,047-foot long, 121-foot wide vessel crossed the Ems River in about 10 hours - an amazing feat, considering the scale of the ship and the geography of the shipyard required the Captain to steer the ship backward, assisted by tugboats fore and aft.

    Preparations for the transit - known as "the conveyance" - include removing power lines and railway tracks that normally pass over the river, to allow the ship to pass through. The journey must take place when wind conditions are calm and at high tide to ensure ample depth of water in the river to prevent the possibility of the ship scraping its multi-million-dollar paintwork.

    Thousands of spectators lined the river to watch and enjoy the conveyance. Traveling at less than four miles per hour, Celebrity Reflection joins four award-winning Solstice Class sister ships which have made the same complex journey prior to officially entering service. Following sea trials and the completion of finishing work while in Emshaven, The Netherlands, Celebrity Reflection will host an invitation-only preview sailing before embarking October 12 on her first cruise from Amsterdam.

    Celebrity Reflection boasts a number of industry firsts, including AquaClass Suites, Signature Suites and the ultra-luxurious Reflection Suite - the first to include a glass shower extending out over the edge of the ship. The ship also will feature designer boutiques, Celebrity's signature specialty dining venues and glamorous main dining room, and expanded AquaSpa by Elemis experiences.

    After presenting vacations from Amsterdam to Belgium and France to Barcelona, Celebrity Reflection will cross the Atlantic Ocean to arrive in Miami December 1 and depart for its inaugural Caribbean sailing December 5, following invitation-only promotional sailings. The sleek, new ship will offer guests a series of seven-night Eastern Caribbean itineraries roundtrip from Miami, Fla.

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    9-17-12 Norwegian Star Hits Explorer of the Seas in Bermuda Examiner.com is reporting that while in Bermuda about 1:30 p.m. on Friday, Sep. 14, the Norwegian Star broke loose from her moorings and was pushed by the wind into the Royal Caribbean Explorer of the seas moored at the next berth. This happened as passengers watched from shore and aboard both ship.

    The 45 knot winds (52 miles per hour) broke the aft mooring lines holding Norwegian Star to the dock. Soon the wind moved the Star from the dock and into the nearby Royal Caribbean International Explorer of the seas. Both ships sustained some hull damage.

    After hitting the Explorer the Star set both anchors and started the bow thrusters to add to their ability to maintain a position. Also, a rescue craft was launched to investigate damage to each ship. Both ships were considered not to be in any immediate danger of sinking due to the collision, although repairs are needed.

    Norwegian soon asked port authorities for two tug boats to be sent immediately to assist the Star get back on her mooring at the dock. The requested tug boats arrived at the Star about 30 minutes after the request. Another 15 minutes passed while a pilot boarded the Star and the ship was pushed back into her berth.

    No reports of injuries from passengers or crew were reported. Because the situation occurred over a few minute time span, crew was able to prepare for the event. The time facilitated ensuring nobody was put at risk for significant harm. However, the event did inconvenience a number of passengers waiting to disembark or re-embark the ship after spending time in Bermuda. The ship was due to sail back to the USA Friday evening, so many were wrapping up their time in Bermuda.

    The Norwegian Star sailed back to the USA as planned Friday evening. Also, the Explorer of the seas will return on schedule as well. At this time there are no statements from either cruise line about when the ships will receive repairs to their hulls or if the repairs will affect any upcoming scheduled cruises. In past incidents there were mixed results repairing ships while sailing normal schedules with some ships coming out of service long enough to make hull repairs, although that is a last resort move.

    Pictures and reports show several dents to the starboard aft waterline area of the hull of Norwegian Star. There are few pictures circulating at this hour of any damage to Explorer of the seas. Reports from passengers aboard the Explorer indicate a small dent is present but nothing more.

    This is not the first time ships have broken free of moorings in high winds. Further it is not the first time Royal Caribbean authorities are dealing with one of their ships being hit by another cruise ship while their ship sat docked in port.

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    9-10-12 Cunard's Queen Victoria to Cancel Oct 3 Voyage Cunard's Queen Victoria has suffered mechanical failure that affected the ships propulsion system, meaning it can only sail with a fraction of its usual speed. With hundreds of passengers on board and 981 crew the ship is currently off the Portuguese coast in the Atlantic Ocean

    Queen Victoria will be able to continue the voyage to Southampton safely without the use of one engine or one propeller. A company spokesman said, "Cunard needs to carry out some essential maintenance work on Queen Victoria and has therefore taken the regrettable but unavoidable decision to cancel a 16 night Mediterranean voyage due to depart from Southampton on October 3."

    "The work relates to one of Queen Victoria's propulsion units. Although there are no safety issues relating to this maintenance, it does preclude the ship achieving the speeds required to deliver the voyage itinerary and therefore it is necessary to take the ship out of service for a short period."

    The dry dock will take place in Bremerhaven in Germany until October 17 with a two night voyage sailing from the city, a spokesman said.

    Queen Victoria will then set out on her 23 night Caribbean voyage as brochured on October 19.

    Peter Shanks, MD and President of Cunard, said: "We are very sorry to disrupt our passengers' travel plans. "We are doing all we can to minimise the impact on our passengers and to help everyone affected find suitable alternative holidays."

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    9-6-12 Cruise Industry Expands U.S. Economy

    America-based Cruise Lines create jobs and spending Washington, DC, September 6, 2012 - The North American cruise industry continued to expand its contribution to the U.S. economy in 2011 according to an independent study commissioned by Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA). Direct purchases by CLIA's 26 member lines and their passengers and crew totaled approximately $19 billion resulting in $40.4 billion in total economic impact. The related cruise industry spending generated nearly 350,000 jobs paying $16.5 billion in wages to American workers.

    After a strong rebound in 2010 from the recessionary impacts of 2009, the North American cruise industry continued to expand in 2011 at a pace that matched the growth for key operating metrics the previous year. The continuing expansion allowed the industry to reach new highs for capacity and the number of passengers sailing on CLIA member cruise lines, with the North American cruise industry outpacing the growth of overall economic activity in the U.S. America continued to be the economic driver for the industry, providing close to two-thirds of all global passengers and 60 percent of all cruise embarkations.

    "In this uncertain economic environment, we are pleased to demonstrate the importance of the North American cruise industry to the U.S. economy in creating jobs and positively impacting the residents of all 50 states through direct and indirect spending," said Christine Duffy, CLIA's president and CEO. "These findings are further evidence that the industry's ability to provide outstanding choice and value that resonate strongly with consumers work in beneficial ways for the country's economy as well."

    "The Contribution of the North American Cruise Industry to the U.S. Economy in 2011" was prepared for CLIA by Business Research & Economic Advisors (BREA) of Exton, Pennsylvania. The key findings include:

    Total economic impact on the U.S. economy grew by 6.8 percent to $40.42 billion in 2011, with direct spending by the cruise industry growing by 4.8 percent to $18.9 billion; total employment grew by 5.4 percent to 347,787 and wages and salaries jumped by 8.3 percent in 2011.

    The North American cruise industry benefited every state economy through direct purchases of goods and services, with approximately 80 percent of the impact concentrated in ten states - Florida, California, New York, Texas, Alaska, Washington, Georgia, Massachusetts, Illinois and Colorado.

    • #1 Florida cruise passenger and crew visits totaled 8.94 million in 2011, a 2.6 percent increase, with direct spending of $6.7 billion and 130,950 jobs that generated $5.76 billion in income.
    • #2 California cruise passenger and crew visits totaled 979,000, generating $1.86 billion in direct spending and creating 42,254 jobs that paid $2.3 billion in wages.
    • #3 New York, with 896,000 passenger and crew visits, accounted for 6.6 percent of the industry's direct expenditures ($1.25 billion), generating 16,608 jobs paying $944 million in income.
    • #4 Texas received just over $1.12 billion in cruise industry direct spending, creating 17,316 jobs paying $917 million in income.
    • #5 Alaska received just over 4.8 million passenger and crew visits in 2011, a 1.4 percent increase over the previous year, which accounted for 5.4 percent of the industry's direct spending ($1.02 billion generating 22,493 jobs paying $962 million in wage income.

    Worldwide, 16.3 million people took cruise vacations on CLIA member lines in 2011, an increase of 10.1 percent over the previous year. U.S. cruise passengers totaled 10.4 million, or 63.5 percent.

    U.S. ports handled 60 percent of all global cruise embarkations, with 9.83 million passengers sailing from American ports, a 1.4 percent increase over 2010.

    The top ten U.S. cruise ports - Miami, Port Everglades, Port Canaveral, New York, Galveston, Tampa, Seattle, Long Beach, New Orleans, Los Angeles - accounted for nearly 86 percent of all U.S. embarkations

    Net capacity, measured by lower berths, grew by 4.1 percent in 2011 to 320,304

    Capacity growth remained concentrated in Europe - 18 percent

    Within North America, deployed capacity increased by 5.4 percent, led by Bermuda (36 percent), Hawaii (32 percent) and Alaska (19 percent)

    Further information about the contribution of the North American cruise industry to the U.S. economy may be found at http://www.cruising.org/pressroom-research/market-research

    About CLIA The nonprofit Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) is the world's largest cruise industry organization. CLIA represents the interests of 26 member lines and participates in the regulatory and policy development process while supporting measures that foster a safe, secure and healthy cruise ship environment. CLIA also is engaged in travel agent training, research, and marketing communications to promote the value and desirability of cruise vacations with thousands of travel agency and travel agent members across North America. For more information about CLIA, the cruise industry, and CLIA-member lines and travel agencies, visit www.cruising.org. CLIA can also be followed on the Cruise Lines International Association's Facebook and Twitter fan pages, and CEO Christine Duffy can be followed @CLIACEO and cruising.org/ceoblog.

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    9-5-12 Disney to Add 2013 Cruises from Galveston

    In early 2013, Disney Cruise Line will offer a variety of new itineraries departing from Galveston, Texas, providing even more cruise options for guests. In addition to six-night Western Caribbean sailings, new choices include four-night Caribbean getaway cruises and eight-night itineraries that take guests to Walt Disney World Resort and Disney's private island in the Bahamas, Castaway Cay.

    "We are excited to add even more variety to our offering of itineraries from the Port of Galveston," said Disney Cruise Line President Karl Holz. "The addition of shorter getaway cruises and voyages that call on our most popular port of call, Disney's Castaway Cay, rounds out an impressive array of itinerary options from Galveston."

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