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JMAK= : ( ( . / < Tuesday 05 June 2012

Uniworld adds three ships in Asia Australians will soon have more opportunities for luxury cruising on the Yangtze and Mekong. UNIWORLD Boutique River Cruise Collection is claiming to provide “the best cruising experiences these regions have to offer” when it launches three new small ships in Asia next year. The luxury line has partnered with Pandaw in Vietnam and Cambodia and Century River Cruises in China to operate several sailings on new vessels along the Mekong and Yangtze. Joining the River Saigon, which Uniworld launched in January 2012, will be the 60-

Hurtigruten in Greenwich FOR the first time ever Hurtigruten will feature itineraries departing from and concluding in the London port of Greenwich. Outlined in the new 2013/14 Explorers Brochure, the itineraries include a new voyage which explores Norway and Scotland before finishing in Greenwich, and another that departs from Greenwich and explores the UK before heading over to Hamburg. The new brochure covers cruising in Spitsbergen, Greenland, Antarctica and Europe, and features more dates for its most popular itineraries, plus a 20% early booking discount, which is capacity controlled per departure. Highlights of the program include a new 19day Great Antarctic expedition from Ushuaia to the Falklands, South Georgia, the South Orkney Islands and Antarctica; as well as three ‘In the realm of the Polar Bear’ Spitsbergen circumnavigations. See your travel agent for a copy of the brochure.

passenger, French colonial-style River Orchid. “The demand for Vietnam and Cambodia has exceeded our expectations,” said John Molinaro, general manager, Uniworld. “We quickly sold out all of our departures for 2012, and so it made sense for us to add an additional ship on the Mekong.” In China, passengers can look forward to “an unmatched level of comfort, luxury and relaxation never before experienced on the Yangtze” onboard the new Century Legend and Century Paragon. Special features on these 398-guest vessels include an exclusive executive deck, a large indoor pool/spa area, and Uniworld Signature Suites that include “VIP benefits”, Molinaro said. Uniworld has also arranged for all of its passengers to stay in superior, centrally located five-star hotels throughout Asia. The new 2013 Asia brochure will be released this month. For details, see

Liverpool closer to turnaround THIS month UK transport authorities have granted permission for the Liverpool Cruise Terminal to operate as a turnaround port, pending the repayment of £8.8m as a lump-sum, or a total of £12.6m if phased over 15 years. Prior to this decision, restrictions put on the port in 2007 after it received grants from the UK Government and EU to develop its facilities, prohibited Liverpool Cruise Terminal from having turnarounds and thus potentially poaching cruise trade from other ports. However should Liverpool either repay the lump sum of £8.8m or £12.6m over 15 years, the Department for Transport has said it will allow turnarounds. Final removal of the grant condition by the UK Department for Communities and Local Government will be dependent on securing State Aid clearance from the European Commission, which will now be sought.

Disney sails in to the rescue FOUR Cuban men were rescued by Disney Fantasy on 27 May after they were discovered adrift on a small raft. According to reports the wayward sailors signalled for help and were rescued by crew onboard Fantasy whilst she was sailing between Port Canaveral and Grand Cayman. Once onboard, the men received food, water and medical attention.


TODAY’S ISSUE OF CW Today’s issue of Cruise Weekly features four pages of all the latest cruise news.

Yangzte Wonders

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Conditions: Prices are per person twin share ex. SYD, MEL, BNE, ADL, PER & includes taxes and fuel surcharges, valid for departures from Apr’12 – Nov’12, seasonal surcharge apply. Please check with Helen Wong’s Tours for exact departure dates. Prices & taxes are current at time of brochure printing 15 Sep ‘11. and are subject to availability and change without notice at time of booking. All other conditions as per Helen Wong’s Tours current brochure range. 3146 Lic.No.2TA4103

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¬ Click here for 2013 Avalon brochure and latest earlybird specials

South Australia to boost cruising The coastal state with the least cruising in Australia is primed for 20% more ships next season. THE South Australian Tourism Commission (SATC) aims to double the number of cruise ship arrivals by 2020, starting with a modest increase in the 2012/13 summer. Leah Clarke, SATC’s senior business manager, access development, told Cruise Weekly that South Australian ports will welcome 25 arrivals during the upcoming summer season, up from 21 in 2011/12. “Our long-term goal is to reach 43 cruise ship arrivals by 2020 and we are on track to achieve that,” she said. “Importantly, South Australia is attracting not only more cruise ship arrivals, but also visits from much larger ships carrying more passengers.” Highlights in 2012/13 are set to include

Winter Warmers

Book by June 30

Royal Caribbean’s megaliner Voyager of the Seas visiting Adelaide twice, and Holland America’s Volendam and Classic International Cruises’ MV Athena visiting all four SA ports. Increasing regional dispersal of cruise ships is a major goal of the SATC, Clarke said. “Regional ports had zero large cruise ship arrivals five years ago, and in 2012/13 there will be seven cruise ship arrivals at the regional South Australian ports of Kangaroo Island, Port Lincoln and Robe.” The increases are part of SATC’s Southern Ocean Cruising strategy to put the state on the map as a cruise destination. “We are constantly in touch with the cruise ship companies to ensure they are catered for when they visit our state – if cruise ship companies aren’t happy with a destination, they won’t return,” Clarke said. Also central to the strategy is the private ownership of Adelaide’s port at Outer Harbor. The total economic impact of cruise ships in SA is expected to top $9 million next season, up from $2.7 million in 2006/07.

Solo tariff waived for Avalon MORE than 30 Avalon Waterways European river cruises no longer have a single fare supplement, after the company decided to waive its single traveller pricing on 11 European itineraries between June to October this year. As a result, solo travellers can now save more than a third off the cost of the usual solo fare. Special solo fares are now priced from $3,406 for an eight-day Paris to Normandy’s Landing Beaches cruise along the Seine departing 14 August 2012. See your travel agent for details.

Costa Classica in Dubai

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RESPONDING to strong demand Costa Cruises has announced it will position the 1,680-guest Costa Classica in Dubai to sail week-long middle-east itineraries from November 2012. Originally slated to sail in the Mediterranean during the Northern Hemisphere’s winter 2012/13 season, Classica will now join Costa Atlantica in Dubai, and will be replaced in the Mediterranean by the larger 3,470-guest Costa Magica (from 18 November 2012). Whilst in the Med, Magica will host 12-day eastern Mediterranean voyages to Greece, Israel and Turkey, as well as 11-day western Med cruises taking in Portugal and Morocco.

Cruise Calendar Cruise Weekly’s cruise calendar details upcoming port calls of passenger cruise ships at various destinations in Australia. SYDNEY Pacific Pearl

Fri 08 June

BRISBANE Pacific Sun

Sun 10 June

CAIRNS Pacific Sun

Wed 06 June

DARWIN Dawn Princess Orion

Tue 05 June Tue 12 June

BROOME Dawn Princess

Fri 08 June

Norwegian strike called off THE Norwegian pilot strike which interrupted several cruise ship calls to the port of Oslo, and threatened disturbing services to other Norwegian ports, has been called off with the pilot unions reaching wage agreements with the relevant authorities after a week of action. All vessels 70 metres or more in length in Norwegian ports are subject to compulsory pilotage when operating in waters within the sea boundary.

Last Minute Deals This weekly column highlights hot deals on cruises departing soon – ideal for our spontaneous readers. Check out this week’s cruise bargain: 7-night Vancouver to Anchorage cruise onboard Island Princess • From: $4,039pp (suite) • Departs: 06 June 2012 • Visits: Vancouver, Ketchikan, Juneau, Skagway, and Glacier Bay and College Fjord (cruising). • Includes: Return airfares, seven-night cruise, 1 night pre and post accom. • Contact:

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One week Crystal sale

Grandeur returns to the sea

BETWEEN 04 and 08 June Crystal Cruises is hosting a one-week sales event where guests can receive up to US$800 per stateroom in complimentary shore excursion credits on select voyages. The offer is valid on new full fare cruise bookings made between 04 and 08 June and relates to 12 of Crystal Serenity’s 12-day Mediterranean itineraries, including the 06 September Athens to Istanbul voyage. For more information visit your travel agent or see

RCI’S Grandeur of the Seas has completed her US$48m bow to stern revitalisation, and now sports five new dining venues, new furniture, carpet, a new Royal Babies and Tots Nursery and a refreshed Viking Crown Lounge.

Who loves Pixar? DISNEY Cruise Line has announced it will host four new Pixar themed seven-night Californian Coastal Cruises onboard Disney Wonder. During the voyages guests will be able to interact with their favourite Pixar characters including Mr Incredible, Remy, Woody, Jessie, and Buzz Lightyear, and will be able to have an inside look into the creative process used in the development of an animated feature or short via a series of workshops. Guests will also be able to view storyboards, character sketches, environment paintings, maquettes and other inspiring concept art used to design Pixar films in a special art exhibition at sea, and will have access to the entire Pixar library of films, including a selection of rare animated shorts. The voyages will also host Pixar-themed dance parties in the Atrium Lobby as well as a range of opportunities for guests to hang out with their favorite Pixar pals. The voyages will take place between 16 September and 14 October 2012, and are priced from US$799pp. See your travel agent for details.

HAL helps Special Olympics AUSTRALIAN television icon Paula Duncan has signed on to help raise money for the Special Olympics with Travel the World and HAL. As such, Duncan will join guests onboard Holland America Line’s ms Oosterdam for a 10night Pacific Islands cruise from Sydney which departs 02 January 2013, with 5% of all ticket sales going to Special Olympics Australia. ‘I am so excited to have this opportunity to host such a fantastic South Pacific cruise,” Duncan said. Fares start from $1,499pp, see your travel agent or visit

NCL’s Norwegian Sky THE ink is currently drying on a new Memorandum of Understanding signed by Norwegian Cruise Line to purchase Norwegian Sky. Currently NCL operates the 2,002-guest Norwegian Sky under a Bareboat Charter agreement with Ample Avenue. Under the Charter agreement NCL had the option to purchase the vessel, an option which is now being exercised. According to reports the purchase price is approximately US$260 million. The transaction is expected to close shortly. At present Norwegian Sky operates three and four-night voyages year-round from Miami.

3 2 5 7 + 2 / ( POMP and ceremony P&O Cruises’ chefs have added a bit of pomp and ceremony onboard Pacific Jewel, Pacific Pearl, Pacific Sun and Pacific Dawn, cooking up special Union Jack cakes to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. Guests celebrated the Queen’s 60 year reign whilst cruising around Australia and the Pacific Islands, tucking into the Diamond Jubilee cakes and enjoying some good old fashioned Royal bunting (pictured below).

Sunsailing into Vancouver Is YACHT charter company, Sunsail, has expanded its reach into Vancouver Island, British Columbia, partnering with Island Cruising, to offer its Bareboat and Skippered Yacht charters in the region, with itineraries through the USA and Canada.

Getaway with Scenic Cruises POPULAR travel program Getaway is showcasing Scenic Tours river cruising product to the Black Sea, the Danube, the Rhine, France and Russia over the coming months. To get an insider’s look onboard the company’s Black Sea cruises, make sure you tune into Channel 9 this Saturday night as host Catriona Rowntree takes viewers onboard Scenic’s ‘Space-Ship’, the Scenic Pearl at Cernavoda.

Cunard’s Jubilee specials CUNARD is celebrating Queen Elizabeth II’s Jubilee with a 14-day ultimate upgrade sale. The offer applies across a range of stateroom categories on all three Queens, and includes an upgrade from an inside stateroom to a oceanview stateroom onboard QM2’s 15-night voyage from Fremantle to Cape Town departing 26 March 2013, priced from $2,899 per person twin share. The sale runs from today until 11.59pm on 19 June 2012, see your travel agent for details.

Spring Kimberley cruise deals CORAL Princess Cruises is offering 15% - 25% discounts off a selection of its August, September and October Kimberley Coast 2012 voyages. Travelling onboard the 72-guest Oceanic Discoverer and the 48-passenger Coral Princess between Darwin and Broome, the reduced price 10-night cruises start from $5,941pp. See your travel agent for more details.

MSC NYC package deal MSC Cruises is offering guests a special New York to Copenhagen fly/cruise package which is priced from $4,098 per person. Departing Australia on 19 April 2013, the package includes flights and a cruise from New York on 23 April which calls at ports in Portugal, Spain, the UK, Germany and Denmark. “We’re always looking to add value to the experience at MSC, and as this voyage is at sea during ANZAC Day, we will be looking at possibilities there too once we know the numbers from this market,” said MSC Cruises Australia Managing Director, Lynne Clarke. See your travel agent, or visit

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Heading North for Winter? by: Roderick Eime In a few weeks time, the first wave of Arctic cruises will begin in vessels ranging from full blown icebreakers to cruise ships with just enough ‘ice rating’ to nudge a few floating blocks. Ships venturing anywhere north of the Arctic Circle will almost always advertise some degree of ice rating, ranging from the highest, 1A Super to the just acceptable, 1D. If you are making a decision about your first adventure or expedition cruise, it is important you understand the different features and limitations of the various classes of vessels. Icebreaker The mighty icebreaker is without doubt, the ultimate expedition vessel for the polar regions. Capable of smashing through thick sheets of pack ice, these vessels can travel to the most remote reaches of the planet including the North Pole. Originally drawn from the Russian working fleet, these vessels are rudimentary in facilities compared to the large liners, but their rough’n’ready character often enhances their appeal. Nevertheless, they are modern and sophisticated with state-of-art navigational aids. Cabins are straightforward and comfortable without being lavish and dining is supplied by European chefs and is tasty and plentiful. The downside of the icebreaker is their rounded hull which makes rough open sea conditions pretty exciting. Northern itineraries are gentler, but be prepared if you are crossing the mighty Southern Ocean during their voyages in our hemisphere. Often equipped with helicopters for remote access, the icebreaker journey is the badge all true expeditioners aspire too. Oceanographic Vessel Similar to the icebreaker, the oceanographic vessel is another that typifies the spirit of adventure. Ranging from 1000 to about 6000

Ponant’s L’Austral- Icy Luxury

tonnes with passenger capacity of 50 to 80, these ice-strengthened, mainly Russian, ships were purpose built for the rigours of the arctic and are sturdy and robust. Some even spent time as spy ships in the old USSR. Their capability is limited as they cannot physically break thick ice, but they are still able to navigate a surprisingly dense pack. Their conventional hulls offer more ocean comfort and most have stabilisers. Helicopters are generally not carried. Expedition or Adventure Ship Slightly softer in expedition capacity than the rugged Russian workhorses, the expedition yacht is akin to a pocket cruise liner with an ice-rating and creature comforts similar to those found on the bigger ships. It is ideal for those used to the big ship experience, but looking for a more active, intimate alternative. Expect to find more luxurious cabins and restaurant-style dining with cocktail bars, boutiques and shiny fittings. Some vessels will provide the full range of expedition experience, while others may be less capable. More passengers will limit some shore excursion possibilities. Lengthy and ambitious itineraries can be attempted as most vessels in this class are fully ocean-going with stabilisers. Passenger capacity is typically over 100 and may range as high as 300 or more with vessels as large as 10,000 tonnes. Newbuild ships entering the market are most commonly constructed to this segment and are typified by the recent arrival of Ponant’s Le Boreal and L’Austral. Comparatively large with lashings of creature comforts, these vessels are the new face of adventure cruising, catering to well-healed passengers with a taste for luxury.

50 Years of Victory - Hardcore Nuclear Icebreaker

Cruise Weekly is Australia’s favourite online cruising publication. In production since 2007, Cruise Weekly is published each Tuesday, with a further travel industry update each Thursday. Cruise Weekly is free and is sent to subscribers via email as an Adobe Acrobat PDF document. Sign up for a free subscription at PO Box 1010, Epping, NSW 1710 Phone: 1300 799 220 Fax: 1300 799 221

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CW for Tue 05 Jun 2012 - Uniworld adds ships, Liverpool turnaround, Hurtigruten in Greenwich, SA  

15 Days from $4450 Yangzte Wonders Tuesday 05 June 2012 FOUR Cuban men were rescued by Disney Fantasy on 27 May after they were discovered a...