Welcome to the Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine Blog where we keep you up to date with things about cruises that are part of cruise news, useful, interesting and even irrelevant but fun in the world of cruises and cruising.

Sunday, January 31, 2010


Have you ever heard of a “babymoon cruise”?

Well, many couples who enjoy cruising and who are expecting may well have heard of such a thing.

A “babymoon cruise” is a cruise designed for expectant couples - a last chance fling before the baby arrives.

Not many cruise lines actively package or market babymoon cruises but most travel agents and booking offices will know what you mean when you ask about them.

The bottom line about babymoon cruises, however, is that you need to do a lot of the research yourself, to make sure you make the right decisions.

Prow’s Edge Cruise Magazine takes a look at some of the things to consider in planning a “babymoon cruise” including:

• Considering your destination
• Considering the cruise ship
• Considering the itinerary
• Finding out about the medical facilities on board
• Finding out about the medical facilities along the route
• Checking cruise line policies about pregnant passengers
• Talking to your doctor about your cruise
• Checking the airline restrictions for pregnant passengers
• Checking your travel insurance

For more detailed tips, visit the Prow’s Edge Babymoon Cruises page at www.prowsedge.com/cruises-advice-babymoon-cruises.html
High fashion on the High Seas

It's not enough just to know about what to wear on a cruise ship - we need to know where to buy that all important new wardrobe, and how to do it sensibly so that the money spent buys you a wardrobe that is useful all year long and not just for a few days on the Caribbean sea.

Did you know, for example, that there is such a thing as a "cruise collection" and that it is offered by most of the major fashion houses like Chanel, Dior and Ralph Lauren, and that cruise collections are also now being targeted at men by the likes of Yves Saint-Laurent, Dolce & Cabbana, Gucci and Armani.

Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine offers a few tips on where to buy "high fashion" at http://www.prowsedge.com/cruises-advice-high-fashion.html and if you want to share your own views on the subject, please visit our forum pages on the subject of high fashion on a cruise ship and join in the discussion.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Like it or not, Crime at Sea IS a Problem

Did you know that every month there is at least one sexual assault on cruise passengers somewhere in the world?

And did you know that in 2009 alone there were more than 25 cases of passengers mysteriously going over board (which is more than two every month) – and that many of those cases have never been solved?

Given the number of passengers travelling on cruise ships every day these figures are not a tidal wave of horror, but, like it or not, crime at sea IS a problem and cruise passengers have to learn to be aware of this issue.

Prow’s Edge Cruise Magazine tackles the problem head on in the expanded SAFETY AT SEA section of the web site and helps readers find out how to avoid becoming a victim of crime at sea and a few tips as to what do should you be a victim of crime at sea.

Prow’s Edge also takes a look at the truth about drug-facilitated sexual assault and at how the International Cruise Victims Association has had such an impact on establishing legislation to protect passengers at sea, the result of which is The Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2009.

The International Cruise Victims Association, speaking for the victims of crimes at sea and their families, continues to fight for more safety at sea, troubleshooting and pinpointing things of concern - such as the practice on some ships of offering unlimited drinks for one price, which is clearly a step towards excessive alcohol and related crimes.

For more information about the International Cruise Victims Association (ICV) visit: http://www.internationalcruisevictims.org/

The information in the Prow’s Edge SAFETY AT SEA pages is not about spoiling your enjoyment of your cruise, or to sensationalize the issue, but to make you more aware of what is actually happening around you, how to make your vacation as safe as possible and how to cope with a stressful situation should it arise.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Still More Theme Cruises on Offer

A week ago Prow's Edge brought you news about some of the new theme cruises, specifically those offered by MSC Cruises and Fred Olsen Cruise Lines. Today we continue the news with the offerings from two more cruise lines.

Hurtigruten has an expanded roster of even more fascinating Theme Voyages possibilities for 2010. All of which take place aboard the company's fleet of modern vessels as they make their way along Norway’s spectacular fjord-filled, 1,250-mile west coast, on 6- to 12-day sailings between the cosmopolitan city of Bergen and the Arctic town of Kirkenes -- a route named the “world’s most beautiful voyage” by Lonely Planet’s “Bluelist.”

Theme Voyages combine music, history, the culinary arts, national celebrations and traditional arts and crafts spiked with informative talks and activities. For more information see the Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine news page about this at www.prowsedge.com/cruises-news-280110-hurtigruten.html or visit the Hurtigruten web site at www.hurtigruten.us

MSC Cruises invites their passengers to celebrate the sun, sand, and surf with MSC for its 2010-11 Caribbean cruises onboard MSC Poesia to experience a line-up of popular Baseball Greats and Big Band themes departing from Fort Lauderdale.

The Baseball Greats theme cruises, on offer from November 2010 to February 201, include free interactive guest/player activities, question-and-answer sessions with the players, and a guest pitching contest as well as a free autograph session at the end of the cruise.

The 16-piece Les DeMerle Big Band, with vocalist Bonnie Eisele, will be featured on two MSC Poesia Big Band sailings. The band has also accompanied many performers such as Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Jr., The Manhattan Transfer, Mel Torme and Al Jarreau.

For more information about MSC Cruises and its selection of theme cruises, visit www.MSCCruisesUSA.com

For general information about theme cruises see the Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine information page about cruises at www.prowsedge.com/cruises-type-theme.html

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Constantly Changing Face of the Cruise Industry

One of the exciting things about the cruise industry is that it is constantly evolving. New cruise ships enter service (see New Ships for 2010), new cruise lines are being established, and existing companies are rebranding.

Azamara Club Cruises, for example, is the the result of reshaping the original Azamara Cruises brand.

Azamara Cruises – the two-ship brand launched in 2007 with the 694-guest Azamara Journey and sister ship Azamara Quest – became “Azamara Club Cruises,” last month with a newly refined focus, and a series of new attributes designed for upmarket, experienced travelers.

Azamara Club Cruises President & CEO Larry Pimentel and his team
have reshaped the new Azamara Club Cruises, whose most distinguishing new attributes will be in effect by April 2010.

Said Pimental, “Azamara Club Cruises will distinguish itself by delivering the destination like no other line.”

Azamara Club Cruises will visit 140 ports in 50 countries in 2010, with itineraries featuring more overnight stays to allow guests to immerse themselves in communities and cultures.

“We’re going to slow down the tempo, and allow our guests to not just see the destination, but to live it,” said Pimentel. “Consider destinations like St. Tropez or St. Petersburg, Russia. If you’ve experienced them only by day, you haven’t really experienced them. With Azamara, through more overnight stays and late-night stays, you can.”

Among the overnight locations are Istanbul, Turkey; Sorrento, Italy, which offers a host of tour options along the Amalfi Coast and Capri; a full three days and two nights in St. Petersburg, Russia, on Azamara’s Scandinavia and Russia Itineraries; and multiple overnight stays in Azamara’s Southeast Asia region, including Ho Chi Minh City, Bangkok, Singapore and Hong Kong.

The destination focus of Azamara Club Cruises inspired the brand’s new tag line – “You’ll love where we take you”

For more information about Azamara Club Cruises call your travel agent, dial 1-877-999-9553, or visit the official web site at www.azamaraclubcruises.com

or visit the Prow’s Edge Cruise Magazine profile for Azamara Club Cruises at www.prowsedge.com/cruise-lines-azamara-cruises.html

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

New Cruise Shipping Event Slated for November

For those of you interested in the trade side of the cruise industry, UBM International Media, organizers of the annual Cruise Shipping Miami, the world's largest and most important international tradeshow and conference serving the cruise industry, announced today the launch of Cruise Shipping Asia. The inaugural event will take place Nov. 16-18, 2011, at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore.

Organizers expect the new event to unlock the region’s potential as Asia emerges as the industry’s next major growth market. In 2010, Asian cruise passenger numbers are predicted to rise by 40 percent, to more than 1.5 million.

“Globalization of the cruise passenger is one of the key areas of growth for the cruise market,” said Michael Kazakoff, vice president, UBM International Media. “As the industry expands from a North American base to passengers worldwide, we see Asia’s growing number of passengers as a strong indication that this region will continue to expand.”

The event will include a tradeshow and conference program focusing on the Asian cruise market.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Track Your Cruise Ship at MarineTraffic.com

While we're on the subject of cruise ships tracking weather in the latest news item at Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine, did you know that while the Princess cruise ships help to track global weather patterns for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), you can track all the the cruise ships and find out where they are, and where they're headed.

MarineTraffic.com offers and easy to use, interactive map that allows you to locate any ship anywhere in the world and find out it's exact position.

Simply choose the area your cruise ship is in from the options on the left hand navigation bar, make sure the option for passenger vessels is selected and let MarineTraffic.com do all the work. Click on the blue tags on the map to find out the deatils which will include the name of the ship, the plotted course if she is underway, the estimated time of arrival at the next port of call, the falg under which she sails - and more.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

DOGS AT SEA? Oscar leads the way!

Aqua Expeditions hosted Oscar the Top Dog on a 3-day expedition aboard the M/V Aqua last month during the first-ever "World Woof" global community service tour.

A non-profit global initiative, the World Woof Tour featured Oscar the Top Dog making stops in 35 countries in an effort to inspire dog adoption across the globe.

More information about Oscar (and some very handsome photos of him) can be found at his web site at http://www.worldwooftour.com

The 2009 World Woof Tour included Oscar and his crew visiting rural areas in Africa, Thailand, Russia, Nepal and China, and finishing aboard the M/V Aqua with stops in communities along the Amazon River.

For more information about Aqua Expeditions, exploring the more remote and pristine areas of the Pacaya-Samiria Reserve in the upper Amazon River and its tributaries, visit www.aquaexpeditions.com.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

New Ships for 2010 - Good news about the cruise industry for 2010

Celebrating 35 years, the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) and its members are forecasting a year of growth and continued success in 2010.

One of the big markers of the state of the industry is the number of new ships being introduction.

After introducing 14 new ships representing a total investment of $4.7 billion in 2009, the CLIA fleet is set to invest an additional $6.5 billion and welcome 12 new vessels this year.

Important too is the diversity of the new cruise ships. The new ships in 2009 and those coming in 2010 range in capacity from 101 passengers to 5,400 passengers and have been and are being built for everything from roaming the globe in sheer luxury to sailing the waters of Europe's most famous rivers and the coastlines of North America.

The newest members of the CLIA fleet are set to include:

• Royal Caribbean International: Allure of the Seas (5,400 passengers)
• Norwegian Cruise Line: Epic (4,200 passengers)
• Celebrity Cruises: Celebrity Eclipse (2,850 passengers)
• MSC: MSC Magnifica (2,550 passengers)
• Costa Cruises: Deliziosa (2,260 passengers)
• Holland America Line: Nieuw Amsterdam (2,100 passengers)
• Cunard Line: Queen Elizabeth (2,092 passengers)
• Seabourn Cruise Line: Seabourn Sojourn (450 passengers)
• Avalon Waterways: Felicity and Luminary (138 passengers)
• Pearl Seas Cruises: Pearl Mist (110 passengers)
• American Cruise Line: Independence (101 passengers)

Looking even further ahead, CLIA member lines have 26 new ships on order between 2010 and 2012 - 23 ocean-going vessels and three built for river/coastal cruising. This represents a net increase in capacity of 18 percent, or 53,971 beds.

For more information abut the CLIA forecast for 2010 take a look at the Prow’s Edge news page at www.prowsedge.com/cruises-news-200110-Cruise-Lines-International-Association-CLIA.html
Dispelling the Myths about Keeping Fit and Healthy at Sea

As Kevin Retief says in his article Fitness at Sea - Keeping Ship Shape on a Cruise , "In the old days, the cruise gym was a pokey little room in the bowels of the ship, there was no such thing as an on-board spa, healthy eating meant skipping dinner, and getting through the day without several cocktails under your belt was practically unheard of. Today, things are different."

Indeed they are.

Keeping fit and healthy on a cruise is no longer the chore it was many years ago, and in fact, better health on a cruise is part of the focus, and a large part of the fun of cruising today.

And if you're still a cynic about that, a brand new feature at Prow's Edge KEEPING FIT AND HEALTHY ON A CRUISE - A Healthy Cruise - It’s not a Myth gives some pointers on how to change your attitudes and see the fun of the healthy and fit options on board your next cruise.

Healthy alternatives at the dinner table are not limited to a plate of greens and a glass of water, the spa is not as elitist as you might think, the gym is not there to punish you, and active shore excursions can provide lots of healthy fun without you even realizing it.

The Prow's Edge Forum too offers comments and opinions from fellow travelers on all sorts of topics including health at sea.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A new idea in cruise brochures - Cruise West thinks big and introduces a large format "magalog"!

Cruise West, a global leader in small-ship cruising, today unveiled it’s first issue of Explorer – a large format “magalog” that breaks away from the glossy, cookie-cutter brochures that have traditionally dominated the cruise industry.

Starting on January 18th, 400,000 copies of Explorer will land in the hands of customers, prospective cruisers, and travel agents across the United States. When the magalog is received, the outside panel is a teaser visual that provides no hint as to what the reader will discover inside. As the reader unfolds it not once, but twice – a nearly newspaper sized page is revealed, measuring roughly 21-1/2”x 21-1/2.”

“When we spread the competitive brochures out across our conference table, it was hard to tell them apart,” said Dave Remer, Creative Director of remerinc, Cruise West’s Agency of Record. “Not only were the covers and content identical, but the size, shape and slick finish did very little to differentiate their brands. We wanted to break that mold in order to ensure that marketing materials from Cruise West get noticed from the moment they arrive on doorsteps. As readers unfold this magalog, they will become engaged with it on a personal level – something that doesn’t happen with traditional brochures.”

Dietmar Wertanzl, Cruise West President & CEO shared “Our company delivers a clear alternative to mega-ship cruising… a more personal, informative, and interactive experience. This magalog reflects those same virtues.”

Cruise West takes great pride in the fact that their small ships tread lightly on the environment. In keeping with that commitment, Explorer has been designed to print on recyclable paper using soy based ink. And in the coming weeks, Explorer will also be made available online.

If you would like to subscribe to either the print or digital version of Explorer, please visit cruisewest.com to request a brochure.

For a look at Dietmar Wertanzl's "View from the Bridge" at Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine in which he discusses Cruise West's belief that conservation and preservation of wildlife and the environment is not optional - it is obligatory - take a look at www.prowsedge.com/views-dietmar-r-wertanzl.html

Monday, January 18, 2010

Two New Theme Cruises

News now about two new theme cruises on offer from Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines and MSC Cruises.

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has teamed up with the English Bridge Union to offer an EBU -sanctioned bridge tournament on board Balmoral, hosted by well-known player and Daily Express bridge correspondent, Paul Hackett.

There will be opportunities for both experienced and novice players to join in the tournaments, taking place on the 12-night cruise Canary Islands cruise from Dover 3rd May 2010, and Paul Hackett will be giving talks and commenting on each day’s play.

For more information on Balmoral and this particular cruise itinerary, visit www.fredolsencruises.co.uk

And for something completely different, MSC Cruises is inviting you to grab your cowboy hat and boots for some two-stepping to The Bellamy Brothers on MSC Cruises’ Country Music cruise while enjoying the sunny skies and balmy breezes of Caribbean ports on MSC Poesia’s 7-night, February 20, 2010 sailing.

Howard and David Bellamy, The Bellamy Brothers, have been a constant in country music for more than 30 years with 21 singles and more than 50 hits on both the pop and country charts. One of their most famous songs, “Let Your Love Flow,” received the distinguished BMI Five Million Performance Award and was No. 68 on BMI’s Top 100 Songs of the Century.

For more information about this and MSC Cruises’ other theme cruises, visit www.MSCCruisesUSA.com or a local travel professional.

Or visit the Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine page on theme cruises at www.prowsedge.com/cruises-type-theme.html

Costa Cruises, named ''one of the top ten cruise lines'' by the readers of Condé Nast Traveler, is about to take delivery of her newest ship, the Costa Deliziosa.

If you want a preview of the Costa Deliziosa, take a look at www.costadeliziosa.com.

Photo courtesy Costa Cruises

The preview showcases the ship’s cutting-edge design, including the use of premium materials such as various types of marble and granite, stucco applied by spatula using the technique known as “spatolato veneziano,” decorative interior finishes including “parchment scroll lame,” refined Zebrano wood, Wenge timber, Murano glass and stylish polished and glazed steel.

In addition, you'll get to take a look at her innovative features including a 4D cinema, golf simulator and award-winning Samsara Spa. Also online is a preview of the famous works of art featured onboard from Arnaldo Pomodoro and Mario Donizetti, one of the most well-known contemporary artists in Italy.

The ship will be inaugurated in on February 23 in Dubai -- marking the first time a ship has been named in an Arabian city.

For more information about Costa Cruises visit the Costa Cruises profile at Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine at www.prowsedge.com/cruise-lines-costa-cruise-lines.html or visit the official Costa Cruises web site at www.costacruise.com/B2C/USA/Default.htm

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Despite the gloomy reports of struggling economies and stagnating unemployment figures - cancellations of new cruise ship projects - cruise lines are telling Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine that bookings for many cruise lines are actually on the up this year.

Crystal Cruises, for example, has now enjoyed its highest January sales in more than five years. While the record bookings were primarily for Baltic and Mediterranean cruises, Crystal enjoyed a surge of reservations for closer-in World Cruise segments, as well as strong sales for fourth quarter cruises in New England/Canada and its 2010 holiday cruises.

For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit www.crystalcruises.com.

Oceania Cruises is similarly reporting success this year, reporting record breaking bookings when its new flagship Marina went on sale for the first time exclusively to the line’s past guests. Reservations for the day exceeded the line’s previous record by 26%. In its booking debut, nearly 50% of Marina’s released inventory covering 5 inaugural winter season sailings sold in less than 12 hours.

Reservations for Marina’s inaugural season are open to the general public on January 18.

For more information or to order a brochure, contact a travel agent, visit www.OceaniaCruises.com or call toll-free 800-531-5658.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Roger Allnutt Takes Readers "Down Under"

In two new features in the Reviews section of Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine, Roger Allnutt, a freelance travel writer based in Canberra, Australia, and a long-time member of the Australian Society of Travel Writers, takes readers "Down Under" and shares two experiences of cruises in Australia.

One explores the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef aboard the Coral Princess and another discovers the fun of a paddlesteamer journey on one of the two major rivers of Australia, the River Murray.

Also for those in the area, Roger contributes an article on Fiji with Captain Cook Cruises.

Roger Allnutt travels widely around the world researching material for publication in newspapers and magazines in Australia, New Zealand, US, Singapore and other parts of the world. When not traveling, his other interests include food and wine, classical music and theatre and playing tennis.

Roger is happy to accept commissions and can provide material on many parts of the world. He can be reached at Roger.Allnutt@bigpond.com.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Sunny Costa Rica and Caribbean Winter Sailings At Incredible Savings For One Week Only

Windstar Cruises, which operates a three-ship fleet of luxury yachts that explore hidden harbors and secluded coves of the world’s most treasured destinations, begins a one-week sale today on 2010 Winter Costa Rica and Caribbean sailings.

With most of the United States under a deep freeze, Windstar offers incredible savings on sunny and warm Costa Rica and Caribbean voyages. Cruise fares start from $1,199 per person, double occupancy on January 16 through March 20, 2010 sailings.

Wind Star’s 7-day Costa Rica cruise departs and returns to Puerto Caldera, Costa Rica, visiting picturesque San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua; Playas del Coco, Quepos, Bahía Drake, Curu (National Wildlife Refuge), and Tortuga Island, Costa Rica.

Wind Spirit’s new 7-day St. Martin roundtrip itinerary features pristine beaches, lively island culture, and additional daytime sailing. Port of calls include St. Kitts, Tortola, Jost Van Dyke, Virgin Gorda and St. Barts.

Wind Surf’s 7-day roundtrip sailings from Bridgetown, Barbados call on a variety of vibrant ports on northbound and southbound itineraries. The northbound itinerary includes St. Kitts, St. Martin, St. Barts, Guadeloupe, Iles des Saintes and St. Lucia. The southbound itinerary includes Bequia, Dominica, St. Lucia, Mayreau, Grenada and Tobago.

Windstar’s one-week sale is not combinable with any other promotions/programs. Taxes additional. Offer is capacity controlled and may be withdrawn or modified at the discretion of Windstar. Offer is valid on new bookings only and full payment required. Sale ends January 16, 2010.

For more information including rates and itineraries contact a professional travel agent or call Windstar at 1-800-258-7245. Visit Windstar Cruises online at www.windstarcruises.com.

Or for reviews on Windstar Cruises visit the review pages of Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine at where you will find two articles about Windstar - one at www.prowsedge.com/cruises-caribbean-windstar.html and one at www.prowsedge.com/cruises-atlantic-windstar.html

Monday, January 11, 2010

m/s Paul Gauguin Sails Under a New Umbrella

Originally completed in 1997 for Radisson Seven Seas Cruises (now Regent Seven Seas) the m/s Paul Gauguin was designed specifically to sail the shallow seas of Tahiti and French Polynesia.

In 2004, the m/s Paul Gauguin was bought by Paul Gauguin Shipping Limited, and now that Regent Seven Seas has completed its contract, the m/s Paul gauguin has set sail on its inaugral cruise under a new umbrella.

Executive Vice President, Paul Gauguin Shipping Limited, Roy Grimsland has promised to “continue to provide the same luxury product for which Paul Gauguin is known worldwide.”

The ship is 513 feet long, 71 feet wide and has a draft of 16.9 feet. She can accommodate 332 passengers with a staff of 215, one of the highest guest-per-staff ratios at sea (1.5:1). The m/s Paul Gauguin has undergone more than $25M in refurbishments since its inaugural sail in 1998.

For an experience of a cruise aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin, visit a Prow’s Edge Cruise Magazine review at http://www.prowsedge.com/cruises-tahiti-regent-seven-seas.html

There are also details of the m/s Paul Gauguin inaugral cruise this week at www.prowsedge.com/cruises-news-110110-paul-gauguin-cruises.html
Australia Day Spectator Cruises

If you happen to be in Australia either pre- or post- cruise for Australia Day on January 26th, you may be interested in the news that Captain Cook Cruises is offering a variety of Australia Day cruises including the Australia Day Lunch Cruise, Ferry Race Cruise and Tall Ships Race Cruise to ensure you are in the middle of all the Australia Day action. Book your cruise now to secure early bird prices.

The Australia Day Lunch Cruise includes a fabulous festive buffet featuring a selection of seafood and an open bar of still and sparkling wine, local and imported beers and soft drinks.

The Ferrython is one of Australia’s favourite free spectator events. Watch the whole race on Captain Cook Cruises Ferry Race Cruise.

If the majestic Tall Ships race is your preferred event, Captain Cook Cruises Tall Ships Race Cruise is for you as they race from Bradley’s Head, finishing under the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

The Australia Day Lunch Cruise departs from No 6 Jetty, Circular Quay on Tuesday 26 January at 10.45am and returns at 2.24pm. Early bird prices are adults $159, normally $199 and children (5 -14yrs) $99.

The Ferry Race Cruise and Tall Ships Race Cruise depart from No 6 Jetty, Circular Quay on Tuesday January 26. The Ferry Race Cruise departs at 10.45am and returns at 12.15pm and the Ferry Race Cruise departs at 12.30pm and returns at 2.00pm. Early bird prices are adults $39, normally $49 and children (5-14yrs) $25.

For further information and bookings visit www.captaincook.com.au.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Rick Sasso Shares His "View From the Bridge"

A popular and well-respected figure in the cruise industry, Rick Sasso, President and CEO, MSC Cruises, is making his 40th year in the travel industry. After holding key positions at Costa Cruises and Chandris Cruises, Rick joined the team that launched Celebrity Cruises in 1990 and served as the line’s president from 1995-2001.

In 1999 the National Association of Cruise Only Agencies (NACOA) named him “Cruise Industry Executive of the Year”. In 2004, he was named to head the management team of MSC Cruises USA, the fast-growing Europe-based cruise company, in the North American market.

Today, Rick Sasso shares his view from the bridge for Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine with his thoughts on the changing face of the cruises now being offered to passengers and how MSC Cruises fits into the mix.

For the full story "MSC Continues to Offer Guests the ‘Art of Cruising’ on Itineraries Around the World" by Richard E. Sasso, visit www.prowsedge.com/views-rick-sasso.html

For more information on MSC Cruises, visit the Prow's Edge cruise lines section for www.prowsedge.com/cruise-lines-msc-italian-cruises.html or visit the official MSC Cruises web site at www.msccruises.com/cruises.asp

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Maine Windjammer Cooking Earns Rave Reviews

Imagine cooking three “squares” a day for 30 hungry guests in a kitchen the size of a walk-in closet? Don’t even think about using mixers, Cuisinarts or a gas stove…you are restricted to using hand utensils and piling logs into an antique wood stove that’s often tilted as you sail past the islands off mid-coast Maine!

Welcome to the world of Windjammer Cooking!

The good news is that two of the chefs battling these conditions have shared a recipe each for the Captain’s Table pages of Prow’s Edge Cruise Magazine at http://www.prowsedge.com/cruises-chef-paul-dorr.html and at http://www.prowsedge.com/cruises-chef-cara-lauzon.html.

More good news is that sailors and landlubbers alike can now recreate even more of these delicious dishes at home, using the newly released cookbook, Windjammer Cooking: Great Recipes from Maine’s Windjammer Fleet.

The 154-page cookbook, a collaboration between each of the 12 captains in the Maine Windjammer Fleet and Smith/Kerr Associates, LLC, features chapters about each windjammer, including histories of the vessels, 115 breathtaking, full-color photographs, and 60 recipes.

An introductory chapter describes the windjamming experience and guides the reader to the various islands in the Penobscot Bay area—the sailing grounds of the fleet—and a charming treatise on the traditional Down East Lobster Bake, which is a hallmark of every windjammer cruise.

Windjammer Cooking: Great Recipes from Maine’s Windjammer Fleet is available at a retail price of $27.00, the book is available in select bookstores or online at www.sailmainecoast.com.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Historic remnants of Douglas Mawson’s mono-plane uncovered in Antarctica

While looking for suitable shore-side landing spots for guests travelling onboard the visiting expedition ship Orion, Mawson's Huts Foundation team member Mark Farrell has uncovered remnant metal piping from Douglas Mawson’s single-propeller mono-plane, taken with Mawson almost a century ago on his 1911 Antarctic expedition.

Built just eight years after the Wright brothers' first flight, this aircraft was the first produced by the Vickers factory in Britain, and the first taken to either polar region.

The plane was last seen in the mid-1970s when Antarctic researchers photographed the ice-encrusted fuselage. Unusually low tides, in combination with unprecedented melting of ice had exposed the rusty remnants, found on New Year’s Day 2010.

It is understood that remains of the larger segments of the plane, which have been immersed in sea water possibly as long as 30 years, are still visible and clearly identifiable from archival photos as part of the aircraft.

Taking advantage of excellent weather, Orion’s guests were ashore at Cape Denison at 1600 to take a rare look inside the historic Mawson’s Huts and surrounding environs, including seeing the tail plane/rudder of Mawson’s plane, left in the hut by Mawson when he departed in 1913.

Further information on all Orion Expedition Cruises to Antarctica, Papua New Guinea, Melanesia, Asia, New Zealand, the Kimberley and Arnhem Land can be obtained by visiting the website www.orionexpeditions.com

News about Orion Expeditions can also be found at Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine.

Photo by Frank Hurley

Monday, January 4, 2010


Travel Weekly’s Readers’ Choice Awards announced Crystal Cruises as the “Best in Luxury” for 2009. Voted by U.S. travel agents, industry marketing executives and CEOs of the world's largest travel companies, the Travel Weekly award joins a host of other top accolades Crystal has earned from travel agents in 2009.

Travel agents also voted Crystal “the best,” according to the most recent polls from:

* Luxury Travel Advisor magazine – Best Cruise Line for Luxury Ocean Cruises
* Recommend magazine – Best Cruise Line, Luxury
* Virtuoso travel agent consortium – Best Large Ship Cruise Line
* Ensemble travel agent consortium – Cruise Partner of the Year, U.S.
* MailPound travel industry marketing resource – Best Luxury Cruise Line
* Vacations.com travel Luxury Cruise Partner of the year

“With virtually 100% of our sales through travel agents, we are particularly pleased that our travel partners voted the Crystal Cruises’ vacation as the Best in Luxury,” says Crystal president, Gregg Michel. “Discerning travelers depend on the expertise and recommendations of trusted travel professionals, and these awards are tremendous votes of confidence in Crystal’s winning formula of service, space, quality and choices.”

Besides winning accolades from travel agents worldwide, Crystal Cruises is consistently voted World’s Best by consumers and hospitality industry critics. In 2009, Travel + Leisure and Condé Nast Traveler readers voted Crystal Cruises #1, Zagat surveyors named Crystal as their favorite and Cruise Critic editors named Crystal “Best in Luxury,” among other honors.

In the past few years, Crystal Cruises has spent more than $65 million in the chic design of its vessels. “We are so delighted that travelers, their travel counselors and other hospitality professionals have appreciated Crystal Cruises’ commitment to the highest quality vacation experience – from the attentive, gracious service of our staff to the continual reinvestment in our fleet.”

For more information and Crystal reservations, contact a travel agent, call 888-799-4625, or visit www.crystalcruises.com.or take a look at Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine at www.prowsedge.com for news and reviews of Crystal Cruises.

As the Asia Pacific Region continues to reap the benefit of the growth in the cruise industry, Hong Kong is set to lead the way in the area with the brand new Kai Tak Cruise Terminal.

Upon the commissioning of the new cruise terminal, together with the Ocean Terminal in Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong will have a total of four berths for cruise vessels. Conveniently located, these terminal facilities can berth cruise vessels of different types and sizes, providing high quality infrastructure for the long term development of the cruise industry in Hong Kong and in the region.

The government will fund, design and build the cruise terminal, and lease the terminal to a cruise terminal operator, while retaining ownership of the site and the terminal. The new cruise terminal will have two berths with no air draft limit. Upon completion, it will be able to berth the largest cruise vessels, according to the Hong Kong government.

The first berth is expected to commence operation in mid-2013; the second berth will be operational in 2014.

The government is currently considering tenders for the design-and-build contract for the terminal building.