Monthly Archives: September 2010

The 10 Most Exciting Cruise Ships

1. Celebrity Century – Celebrity Cruises This ship, refurbished in 2006, boasts rooms with private verandas and suites with personal butlers. The Martini Bar is also home to the first “ice bar” concept at sea. 

Celebrity Century

suites with personal butlers

2. Pacific Jewel — P&O Cruises Australia Launched December 2009, Pacific Jewel offers a high-wire circus and trapeze arena on the top deck and P&O’s first ever celebrity chef restaurant — Salt Grill by Luke Mangan. The spa and fitness center is as big as an Olympic-sized swimming pool and the ship has four kids’ clubs and a shopping precinct. 

An amazing high-wire circus and trapeze arena on the top deck Pacific Jewel

An amazing high-wire circus and trapeze arena on the top deck

3. MS Panorama — Avalon Waterways The MS Panorama, due to be launched in May 2011, will be the first to feature two full decks of suites with wall-to-wall panoramic windows and balconies to enjoy the view cruising along some of Europe’s major rivers such as the Rhine and Danube. 

AvalonPanorama

The Avalon Panorama is a unique "Suite Ship"

4. Queen Mary 2 — Cunard Arguably the most magnificent ocean liner ever built, the ship features the only planetarium at sea and 15 restaurants and numerous bars and lounges, including the Veuve Clicquot Champagne Bar. With book clubs and regular presentations on contemporary and historical issues, the Queen Mary 2 travels almost everywhere and is well known for a 108 day World Voyage. 

Cunard QM II

Largest, longest, widest, tallest and most expensive passenger liner in history.

5. MSC Fantasia — MSC Cruises Known for opulence,the MSC Fantasia boasts the exclusive MSC yacht club featuring a staircase of Swarovski crystals as well as a private lounge with transparent ceilings. The aqua park has 150 illuminated musical fountains and the swimming area a waterslide. 

MSC Fantasia

The aqua park has 150 illuminated musical fountains

6. Oasis of the Seas — Royal Caribbean Line The world’s largest cruise ship ever, costing over $1 billion, is divided into seven different neighborhoods. Onboard activities include a zip-line, carousel, rock-climbing walls, a 750-seat AquaTheatre amphitheatre hosting water ballet and dinner shows with the option of 25 different restaurants. 

Oasis of the Seas

Neighborhoods at sea

7. Celebrity Solstice — Celebrity Cruises On board Celebrity Solstice, real grass is used in the half-acre Lawn Club where passengers can enjoy a picnic or join a game of bocce or croquet. Watch glass blowers in action. 

Celebrity Solstice

Real grass is used in the half-acre Lawn Club

8. Ruby Princess — Princess Cruises The newest member of the Princess Cruises fleet, the Ruby Princess features poolside theatres and the cruise line’s signature outdoor cinema. The adults-only The Sanctuary features a spa-inspired setting while the kids can enjoy five swimming pools, including a swim-against-the-current lap pool. For those looking to renew their vows or lucky enough to meet their soul mate on board, the ship has the Hearts and Minds wedding chapel. 

Ruby Princess

Movies Under the Stars

9. MV Orion — Orion Expedition Cruises Designed for expedition cruising but exuding luxury, guests explore various destinations, and are transported ashore in one of the fleet of 10 Zodiacs or inflatable rubber boats. On board, enjoy a meal from award-winning Sydney chef Serge Dansereau of The Bathers’ Pavilion fame. 1 

MV Orion

Designed to access the inaccessible in 5* luxury

10. MV True North — True North Cruise through Australia’s Top End on board one of the most luxurious Australian cruise ships, True North. Six expedition vessels carry passengers up close to waterfalls and the onboard helicopter can take passengers to remote billabongs to fish or snorkel. 

MV True North

Each year, she does one circumnavigation of Australia

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5 Clauses to be aware of in your cruise contract.

Cruise Lines

A Travel Agent Will Help You With The Small Print

1. Did you know that the law governing cruises depends on the law of the country where the ship is registered which is usually the Bahamas, Liberia or Panama. 

2. Basically, prices, rooms, excursions, itineraries, and anything not guaranteed is up to the cruise line’s discretion, so you have no control over any cancellations, deviations from the advertised schedule, ports of call that the cruise line makes to your trip. 

3. Medical facilities are excellent on board but the cruise lines aren’t responsible for the malpractice of the ship’s doctors. Similarly, all spa personnel, photographers, instructors, guest lecturers and entertainers and other service personnel shall be considered independent contractors, so if anything goes wrong the cruise line do not accept responsibility. 

4. Children and retirees are second-class citizens. The survivors of children or retired passengers who die on cruise ships have no right to compensation except for burial and funeral expenses. It turns out that when passengers die on the high seas, the “Death On The High Seas Act” applies. It limits the recovery of the surviving family members to what is called pecuniary losses. This means that only lost wages and burial or funeral expenses are permitted. If you’re a child or a retiree, and not earning wages, the only compensation is for the costs of the burial. 

5. Watch the clock, you don’t have much time as there’s a one-year limitation period to file a claim, and a six-month period to write a letter to the cruise line if the passenger has been injured. So don’t miss that deadline otherwise you will not have a leg to stand on. 

Taking all into account the cruise sector is excellent value for money and absolute bargains are to be had. This sector of the vacation market is growing phenomenally so the cruise lines must be doing something right. 

Our advice is just to be flexible in relation to the itinerary and don’t get too stressed out if you receive that notification advising you of a change.

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