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.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Windstar Cruises Announces 2-For-1 Fares on Select Fall European Sailings

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, offers exceptional values to some of the most remarkable places in the world with 2-for-1 fares on select fall European voyages plus up to $750 per person bonus savings for new bookings made now through September 5, 2010.

Wind Surf 7-Day European Voyages:
· October 17, 2010, Venice to Venice Sailing: Venice, Italy (overnight); Rovinj, Croatia; Opatija, Croatia; Trogir, Croatia; Dubrovnik, Croatia; At Sea; and Venice, Italy from $1,299 (brochure fare $3,899) per person.
· October 31, 2010, Rome to Barcelona Sailing: Rome, Italy; Portoferraio, Italy; Porto-Vecchio, Italy; Alghero, Italy; Palma de Mallorca, Spain; Mahon, Spain; and Barcelona, Spain from $1,249 (brochure fare $3,799) per person.
· November 7, 2010, Barcelona to Lisbon Sailing: Barcelona, Spain; Tarragona, Spain; Ibiza, Spain; Almeria, Spain; Malaga, Spain; Tangier, Morocco; At Sea; and Lisbon, Portugal from $1,175 (brochure fare $3,799) per person.

Wind Star 7-Day European Voyages:
· October 23, 2010, Rome to Rome Sailing: Rome, Italy; Ischia, Italy; Sorrento, Italy; Amalfi, Italy; At Sea; Cagliari, Italy; Porto Cervo, Italy; Porto-Vecchio, France; and Rome, Italy from $1,249 (brochure fare $3,899) per person.
· October 30, 2010, Rome to Barcelona Sailing: Rome, Italy; Port Cervo, Italy; Cagliari, Italy; Carloforto, Italy; Mahon, Spain; Palma de Mallorca, Spain; Valencia, Spain; and Barcelona, Spain from $1,249 (brochure fare $3,899) per person.
· November 6, 2010, Barcelona to Lisbon Sailing: Barcelona, Spain; Palma de Mallorca, Spain; At Sea; Almeria, Spain; Malaga, Spain; Cadiz, Spain; Portimao, Portugal; and Lisbon, Portugal from $1,199 (brochure fare $3,899) per person.

Wind Spirit 7-Day European Voyages:
· October 30, 2010, Rome to Rome Sailing: Rome, Italy; Port-Vecchio, France; Porto Cervo, Italy; At Sea; Amalfi, Italy; Sorrento, Italy; Capri, Italy; Ischia, Italy; and Rome, Italy from $1,249 (brochure fare $3,899) per person.
· November 6, 2010, Rome to Barcelona Sailing: Rome, Italy; Ischia, Italy; Sorrento, Italy; Amalfi, Italy; At Sea; Carloforto, Italy; Mahon, Spain; Palma de Mallorca, Spain; and Barcelona, Spain from $1,199 (brochure fare $3,899) per person.

Windstar’s 2-for-1 Europe fares are not combinable with any other promotions/programs or shipboard credit offers. Offer is valid on new bookings made August 30, 2010, through September 5, 2010. Offer valid for U.S. residents only. 2-for-1 fares are per person, double occupancy based on a 50 percent discount off brochure fares as published in the 2010/2011Windstar Cruises Sailing Atlas. Bonus Savings of up to $750 per person on select sailings, is in addition to the 2-for-1 fare and is valid on select sailings only. Rates shown are for Category B staterooms, and once allotted staterooms are sold, the promotion is closed for that sailing. Government fees and taxes additional. Full payment is required within 24 hours of making the booking. Offer is capacity controlled and may be withdrawn or modified at the discretion of Windstar.

See the Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine profile of Windstar Cruises or visit the official website at http://www.windstarcruises.com/

Monday, August 30, 2010

Share Your Experience of the Food Network / Celebrity Cruises Cruise

If you were one of the lucky ones on the Food Network cruise with Clebrity Cruises, we would love to hear from you and share the fun with our readers.

You can leave your comments here, or email us at social@prowsedge.com

Cruise articles about other cruises can be found in the CRUISE ARTICLES AND REVIEWS section of Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine

Looking forward to hearing from you!

Cruise for Foodies - a big success

The hugely successful “cruise for foodies” we wrote about in FOOD NETWORK AT SEA WITH CELEBRITY CRUISES in our June 10 blog is sadly coming to an end - but don’t be too sad about having missed this one, plans are underway to offer a range of additional exclusive Food Network programs in the Food Network at Sea program for 2010 and 2011. These experiences will include other trips with Food Network stars, and trips tied to specific Food Network culinary trends or topics

The 7-night Eastern Caribbean Cruise that departed August 22 from Ft. Lauderdale aboard the Celebrity Solstice, called in San Juan, St. Thomas and St. Maarten, and featured culinary demonstrations led by Iron Chef Cat Cora and Chef Aarón Sánchez from Chefs vs. City, hands-on cooking classes with Food Network chefs, a Food Network VIP Lounge & Screening Room, Battle of the Celebrity Solstice Chefs competition event and VIP Pier-side check-in.

The only cable channel dedicated to connecting viewers to the power and joy of food, Food Network established Food Network at Sea to allow consumers to not only watch the network, but to experience it first hand.

To keep track of future cruises, visit www.foodnetworktravel.com.

For cruise ship recipes take a look at the Cruise Food section at Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine that is packed full of recipes from celebrated executive chefs like Jacques Pépin and Georges Blanc from all the major cruise lines.

If you were one of the lucky ones on the cruise, we would love to hear from you. and find out all about it.

Friday, August 27, 2010

The humanitarian side of Pandaw Cruises

As we reported in our blog in July – Pandaw Cruises’ Floating Hospital - two years ago Pandaw Cruises and their passengers raised emergency funds to buy and equip a brand new hospital ship to provide much needed health care in Burma.

Three doctors and three nurses together with ten auxiliaries and crew sail seven days a week from village to village delivering babies, performing operations and providing healthcare where it would otherwise be non existent. An average of 200 patients a day are treated.

If you would like to take part in this humanitarian effort, Pandaw Cruises invites you to go on line and see the latest news about the Pandaw Charity where you can also make a donation.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

When Ships get Seized

In November last year we talked about the new experience Pandaw River Cruises were offering on the Ganges: Cruise on the Ganges - Who ever would have thought it!

Who ever would have thought that the ship would be seized.

Soon after Pandaw Cruises sent the Pandaw IV from Burma to begin operation, the partner, a Mr Raj Singh, through his company called Pandaw India, seized control of the ship. Pandaw Cruises are now suing Pandaw India in the Indian courts for either payment for the ship or its return to the rightful owners. Meanwhile a court injunction will stop Pandaw India from operating the vessel next season.

A sad development in the story of an attempt by Pandaw River Cruises to bring new and unusual destinations for cruise travelers around the world.

Pandaw River Cruises is now also having to warn its loyal passengers that a company called ‘Pandaw India’ offering cruises on the Ganges starting September 2010 is in no way connected with Pandaw River Cruises. In fact, the ship on offer, the old Pandaw IV since renamed the Bengal Pandaw, is not owned or managed by Pandaw Cruises.

The good news is that the litigation in India has not affected Pandaw operations in other countries where all is running to their usual high standards and plans to increase vessel capacity for the Mekong and other new river destinations in Asia have not in the slightest way been set back.

For more information about Pandaw River Cruises visit the Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine profile about Pandaw River Cruises or visit the official web site at http://www.pandaw.com/

Friday, August 20, 2010

The Fight Continues . . .

Since their latest success in their efforts to improve safety at sea, Kendall Carver and his colleagues at the International Cruise Victims Association (ICV) (see our last blog post - SOMETHING TO BE PROUD ABOUT ) have been keeping busy continuing their fight to eliminate crime at sea.

Their targets now are Canada and Australia where they hope to initiate the process to get similar legislation enacted.

Kendall Carver, President of The International Cruise Victims Association (ICV) spoke on a Canadian radio show, The Informed Traveller (AM770) and did an interview in Australia with ABC about why the cruise safety bill needs to be added in those countries.

Said Kendall Carver, “Clearly the need for such legislation is becoming known around the world. It only makes sense for all countries to put in place the legislation we have passed here in the US.”

Recent cases of crime at sea have brought to the attention of the public in Australia and around the world the fact that cruise crimes are an international problem and occur throughout the world.

ICV currently maintains a separate chapter in Australia, which supports both Australia and South East Asia. Mark Brimble, Vice President and Executive Committee Member of ICV, leads their efforts in these regions and will respond to any inquiries pertaining to these respective regions.

A form to contact Mark Brimble can be found at http://www.internationalcruisevictims.org/ICV_AU.html

For more about cruise crimes, cruise ship crimes and safety at sea, visit the Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine section on CRUISE CRIMES - SAFETY AT SEA

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Something to be Proud About

The historic day last month when President Obama signed Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.)’s Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act into law is a day that The International Cruise Victims Association, Inc. (ICV) can be proud of.

The non-profit corporation formed by victims and families of victims of cruise crimes is the prime reason that the new law has finally emerged and it demonstrates that a group of victims with limited funding can come together and make changes to affect an industry. The photo here shows the ICV lobbying team (including Kendall Carver – President ) at the Capitol.

After almost 5 years of existence, this group now has members in 16 different countries with a separate chapter in Australia.

Says Kendall Carver, "Hopefully this process will serve as a model for others that become victims of crimes, so that they can join together and make a difference."

The new law will increase security, law enforcement, and accountability on cruise ships in international waters. More details are at Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine's Summary of the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2009.

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

What is a Grand Voyage?

There are a lot of terms tossed about in the world of cruises and cruising – strange words and vocabulary that we’re not accustomed to hearing every day.

Prow’s Edge Cruise Magazine explains some of those terms you might be likely to hear while on board your cruise ship in Cruise Ship Vocabulary and Glossary.

But what about some of those terms like “Grand Voyage” mentioned in the latest press release about Holland America Line and their Grand Voyages in 2011 and 2012?

Also referred to as “grand world voyages” or simply “world cruises”,
grand voyages are cruises that are longer than most cruises (often over 120 days) typically offered by the luxury and premium cruise lines like Crystal Cruises, Cunard Line, Holland America Line, Fred.Olsen, P&O, Princess Cruises, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Silversea and the Yachts of Seabourn.

Many of the grand voyages, perhaps because many of them are on British cruise lines, begin and end their cruises in Southampton.

The majority of cruisers take advantage of the entire cruise itineraries offered in the “grand voyage” sector of the market, but shorter segments of the cruise are also very popular with passengers who do not have three months or more to spare, or who would rather split their cruise dollars over a number of different cruises each year, rather than just one. Such segments can be of any length from 9 to 47 days.

One of the advantages of booking an entire world cruise rather than a small segment of it is in the savings on special deals on shore excursions and even in some cases, onboard credit.

For more about such world cruises visit the recently updated page about WORLD CRUISES at Prow’s Edge Cruise Magazine

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Another reason to cruise European

European cruise lines are finally following the trend set by Yachts of Seabourn, Silversea Cruises, SeaDream and lately Regent Seven Seas Cruises in the provision of all-inclusive cruises, but they’re doing it in a slightly different way – by offering packages that cruise passengers can purchase before the cruise or on embarkation.

Thomson Cruises, for example, offers an all-inclusive drinks package that includes draft beer, spirits, aperitifs, house wines, soft drinks and a range of cocktails.

Louis Cruise Lines’ drinks package includes drinks from the bar and wine in the restaurant.

MSC Cruises offers an unlimited drinks package that includes a selection of bottled wines, mineral water, beer and soft drinks, and a second package that includes soft drinks and mineral water.

And starting in 2011, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises will be offering a new and attractive price structure for its premium ship, the MS Columbus. With the “Columbus all-inclusive package,” extras on board will become a thing of the past. For anyone booking a “Columbus all-inclusive package,” all 81 drinks on the beverages list – from soft drinks to exotic cocktails – all tips on board and even a package of two to four shore excursions per cruise are included in the price.

The larger cruise lines plying the waters of the Caribbean seem reluctant to follow the trend - though some cruise lines, like Celebrity Cruises are offering wine packages and will be offering more elaborate drinks packages in the future.

For the moment - it’s just another reason to cruise European.

For more information about all-inclusive cruises visit the ALL INCLUSIVE CRUISES page at Prow’s Edge Cruise Magazine

Monday, August 16, 2010

Swan Hellenic Takes Passengers Somewhere Different

Visitors at Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine, and readers of our blog here continuously tells us how refreshing it is to hear about cruises to destinations other than the usual Alaska or Caribbean ports of call.

To that end we bring you news of Swan Hellenic who are revisiting some classic destinations as well as discovering some hidden gems.

In May 2011, guests on ‘An Italian Serenade’ can visit the picturesque Crotone, located in the southern region of Calabria, Italy, and the small fortified town of Lazio, dominated by a large Aragonese Castle.

In late summer 2011 mv Minerva will make a complete circuit of the Black Sea with visits to Sinop in North Turkey, Batumi in Georgia and the ports of the Crimea.

Many of the upcoming cruise itineraries have reached capacity due to the quality of the expeditions and the breadth of locations this smaller cruise ship is able to travel to, not to mention the inclusive value; which has been Swan Hellenic’s company ethos since 1954. Guests need not worry as Swan Hellenic still have some incredible itineraries left for 2010 including ‘All Roads Lead to Rome’ (26th August), from the lower guarantee fare of £1,299 and ‘The Venetian Republic’ (9th September) from just £1,925 per person.

Swan Hellenic cruises are fast becoming sold out as the success of their 2010 cruise program reaches new heights.

Unprecedented demand for cabins over recent months has meant that Minerva now has less than 100 cabins available on cruises departing before 16th March 2011 and fewer than 50 available on her summer 2010 program.

For more information about Swan Hellenic visit the recently updated SWAN HELLENIC overview page at Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine, or visit the official web site at http://www.swanhellenic.com

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Something REALLY Different for the Holidays

If you're really looking to get away from it all for the holidays - Variety Cruises has two programs sailing over the holiday season and they're very different from the usual offerings for the season.

Rivers of West Africa and King & Pharaohs offer passengers local cuisine, intimate surroundings, and an authentic experience aboard lavish mega yachts.

The Rivers of West Africa cruise explores a land of lush vegetation and cultural beauty by way of the winding Saloun and Gambia rivers. Embarking from Dakar, Senegal, the program sails from December 17 - 24, 2010, with fares beginning at $2,490 per person. An optional seven-day land program extension in Mali and Timbuktu following the cruise is available for additional cost. Alternative holiday travel dates include December 24 – 31, 2010 and December 31, 2010 through January 7, 2011.

The Kings & Pharaohs cruise sails along the Red Sea coast, including Egypt, Jordan and other gateway ports to world famous sites of ancient history. A one-way cruise between Aqaba, Jordan and Suez, Egypt sails from December 24 - 29, 2010. Travel is available from Suez to Aqaba December 29, 2010 through January 3, 2011. Fares begin at $1,490 per person, per week.

For more information visit www.varietycruises.com, 1-866-944-8498 (Canada) and 1-800-319-7776 (US).

For an overview of Variety Cruises, visit the VARIETY CRUISES page at Prow's Edge Cruise Magazine

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

New Ships for Luxury Cruise Sector

In our last blog item we talked about the growth of the river cruises sector of the cruise industry.

The very same survey that gives us that information – see CRUISE LINE GROWTH SECTORS – comes news that it is not only the river cruises sector that is experiencing growth, but the luxury cruises sector as well.

One of the reasons for this growth, say cruise travel agents, is that luxury cruises are now no longer the prerogative of the very wealthy. Summer incentives and promotions have made luxury cruising more affordable than before. 79% of the cruise travel agents in the survey agreed that luxury cruise clients are somewhat or much more apt to make a purchase with a special offer.

Another major reason for the growth of the luxury cruise sector is the introduction of luxury on contemporary and upmarket brands in the form of exclusive suite accommodations, luxury spas, “yacht clubs” and more. The result is far greater choice in cruise ships, itineraries and shipboard experiences for those travelers seeking true luxury.

There is an the increased number of new ships being launched in the luxury cruises market. These include:


Seabourn Cruise Line: Seabourn Sojourn

Cunard Line: Queen Elizabeth


Oceania Cruises: Marina (2011)
Pearl Cruises: PearlMist
Seabourn Cruise Line: Seabourn Quest

For more about luxury cruises, visit the LUXURY CRUISES page at Prow’s Edge Cruise Magazine

Photo: Yachts of Seabourn's Seabourn Sojourn

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

River Cruises on the Rise - Who Knew?

Who knew that river cruises would be one of the top growth sectors of the cruise industry, or that luxury cruises would also be up there at the top of the list.

But that is exactly what has happened.

In our latest news item about CRUISE LINE GROWTH SECTORS the Cruise Lined International Association (CLIA) reveals the results of their survey of cruise lines and travel agents and what’s new in cruise trends and consumer attitudes.

They all agree that the demand for luxury and river cruises is growing and that the main motivating factor is the “destination”.

It shouldn’t be a surprise then to also learn that 3 new river cruise boats are being launched this year, and that a further 5 new vessels will be setting sail next near in 2011.These include:

AmaWaterways: ms Amakaterina
Avalon Waterways: Felicity and Luminary

AmaWaterways: ms Amabella, ms Amaverde, ms Amalotus
Avalon Waterways: Panorama
Uniworld Grand River Cruises: River Antoinette

For more information about river cruises visit the RIVER CRUISES page at Prow’s Edge Cruise Magazine

Photo: AmaWaterways’ brand new ms Amakaterin built for the Russian Rivers

Monday, August 9, 2010

Who's Who of Fascinating Travel Companions

Lindblad Expeditions has announced their Global Luminaries program for 2010/2011 and the line up is impressive!

Renowned for their staff’s expertise in the regions they explore, Global Luminaries will add an extra layer of interest and insight to their expeditions with special guests drawn from the top tiers of world affairs, broadcast journalism, and exploration and research.

The Global Luminaries title refers to what these remarkable individuals contribute to the expedition community at large - a relevant global perspective. The unique program is available exclusively aboard National Geographic Explorer and affords guests the opportunity to travel and explore with world-class personalities, as fellow guests, in the intimate and conversational environment of an expedition - and not just in the context of a presentation or talk from the podium.

Some of the upcoming luminaries who will be traveling this season include:

Gro Brundtland: Former Prime Minister of Norway. UN Special Envoy on Climate Change.
· The Baltics, August 28, 2011 & Antarctica, November 26, 2011

Mary Robinson: First woman President of Ireland. Formerly the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights.
· British & Irish Isles, May 16, 2011

Mikhail Gorbachev: Former President of the Soviet Union, Nobel Peace Laureate, Cold War reformer and 20th-century visionary. President Gorbachev will meet with Lindblad guests in St. Petersburg.
· The Baltics – Aug. 28 & Sept. 5, 2011

Lech Walesa: From electrician to Labor Leader to Nobel Prize winner to the elected President of Poland, he is fascinating and will visit with us in Gdarisk.
· The Baltics – Aug. 28 & Sept. 5, 2011

Elizabeth Kolbert: Journalist, Staff Writer for The New Yorker and Author of Field Notes from a Catastrophe: Man, Nature and Climate Change.
· Ice Bears – June 23, 2011

Robert Siegel: Senior host of NPR’s award-winning All Things Considered he has reported from all over Western and Eastern Europe.
· European Odyssey, Sept. 19, 2011

John Evans: Member of an historic 10-member expedition in 1966, sponsored in part by the National Geographic Society, which became the first to summit the highest point in Antarctica.
· Antarctica – Nov. 27, 2010

Peter Hillary: Born into mountaineering royalty. Summited the highest mountain on each of the seven continents, and established a new overland route to the South Pole.
· Antarctica, Dec. 7, 17 & 27, 2010

Tim Severin: Explorer, Historian, Author and Filmmaker; has literally travelled the legendary routes of myth and established maritime and exploration historic facts.
· Antarctica, South Georgia & the Falklands, Feb. 15, 2011

For reservations contact your travel agent or for additional information on Lindblad Expeditions’ voyages to some of the most beautiful and fascinating places on earth visit www.expeditions.com or call 1-800-EXPEDITION.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Cunard - 170 years and still going strong

History was made in Liverpool recently when Her Royal Highness, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall graced the decks of Cunard Line’s Queen Victoria as the ship made her maiden call in Liverpool. The day marked The Duchess’ second visit to the ship - her first was for the ship’s naming ceremony in December 2007 when she christened the liner.

Not only did The Duchess reacquaint herself with “her” ship and crew, but she also helped Cunard commemorate the 170th anniversary of the company’s first ship, the Britannia, which set sail from Liverpool in July 1840.

In January 2011, Queen Victoria will begin her first Americas season, traversing the Panama Canal on more than one voyage and making two rare roundtrip sailings from Los Angeles to Hawaii, plus debuting her maiden Mexico Getaway voyage.

Prior to embarking on her maiden Americas season, Queen Victoria will meet Queen Mary 2 and Queen Elizabeth in New York Harbour for another spectacular Cunard Royal Rendezvous on 13 January 2011, exactly three years to the day that she met Queen Mary 2 and QE2 in New York for the first meeting of the three Queens. For more information, visit www.cunard.com/rendezvous.

For more information about Queen Victoria or to book a voyage, consult your travel professional, call toll-free 1-800-7-CUNARD, or go to www.cunard.com.