The Cruise Cafe

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Monday, June 20, 2011

Princess, Carnival and Holland America Banning Smoking in Cabins

Princess Cruises, Carnival Cruise Lines and Holland America all announced major changes to their smoking policies. Smokers will soon be banned from lighting up in cabins on all the ships of all three lines.

The Princess smoking ban, which also applies to cabin balconies, will become effective on all sailings departing after Jan. 15.

Carnival said its ban on smoking in all cabins would take effect Dec. 1. The line will still allow both cigarette and cigar smoking on cabin balconies.

Holland America said its ban on smoking in cabins, but not on balconies, would take effect on Jan. 15.

Also, Carnival said it was limiting smoking on its ships to dance clubs, designated areas within the casino and casino bar and certain sections on the open decks.

Carnival Miracle to Offer Year-Round Cruises from NYC from April 2012

Carnival Cruise Lines will launch a year-round program of eight-day cruises to the Caribbean and Bahamas from New York beginning in April 2012 – the line’s first year-round sailings from that port.

On this schedule, Carnival Miracle will offer three uniquely different eight-day itineraries that visit a diversity of beautiful islands throughout the Caribbean and Bahamas. The itineraries include:

• Eastern Caribbean departures to San Juan, St. Thomas and Grand Turk, offered on a rotating basis April through October
• Bahamas sailings featuring stops at the private Bahamian island of Half Moon Cay, Grand Turk and Nassau, offered on a rotating basis April through October
• Bahamas/Florida cruises with port calls to Port Canaveral (Orlando), Nassau and Freeport, offered November through April

While these Caribbean itineraries are uniquely different, each offers beautiful white-sand beaches, excellent shopping and dining experiences, world-famous landmarks, historical sites and attractions, and myriad sightseeing and shore excursion opportunities, including snorkeling, scuba-diving, and water sports.

These cruises also offer the convenience and affordability of sailing from New York on a year-round basis. Residents throughout the Northeast can simply board the Carnival Miracle in New York and start their vacation right away. This program also represents a tremendous savings in airfare cost for these consumers who avoid the inconvenience often associated with air travel today.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Drinks Go Fresh and Healthy on MSC

MSC Cruises will be putting the accent on pure, fresh and fruity beverages this summer season to ensure the selection of natural drinks, cocktails and fine wines matches the healthier lifestyle choices of increasingly discerning guests.

Healthy beverage options are wide ranging throughout the MSC Cruises fleet. All vessels have a Vitamin, tea and Coffee Corner specializing in a large selection of fresh fruit squeezes and shakes. The Musica and Fantasia class ships also feature a Spa Bar dedicated to a range of healthy drinks.

The famed MSC Cruises Italian “Gelateria” remains a treasure trove for those preferring non-alcoholic drinks and offer a mouth watering array of ‘smoothies’ prepared with fresh home-made ice cream, milk and seasonal fruits.

Sizzling summer season cocktails have similarly been adapted in response to new trends that have moved away from complicated concoctions in favour of a return to the simplicity, elegance and purity of many of the truly great traditional recipes that have stood the test of time.

The all time favourite Mojito, with its clean, cool and refreshingly long tasting qualities, remains the best-selling cocktail on all the MSC Cruises liners while a close second is another world famous traditional cocktail, the Piña Colada, which is hard to rival as a sweet frozen drink of rich tropical flavours.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Princess Cruises Offers Sought-After Zumba Classes Fleetwide

Zumba Fitness, the exhilarating dance-fitness program that blends red-hot international music and contagious choreography, is rolling out to the entire Princess Cruises fleet. Since December, passengers on many Princess ships have been joining in the hip-shaking fun with complimentary classes taught by licensed Zumba instructors. The classes quickly became among the most popular activities on board, and now additional staff members will complete the official training to become licensed Zumba instructors as the program expands fleetwide.

On land, there are more than 110,000 Zumba classes held in gyms, fitness studios and even nightclubs, attracting millions of enthusiasts around the world. At sea, Princess ships offer the complimentary workouts once or twice per cruise, transforming venues such as Club Fusion, the Piazza or the outside decks adjacent to Movies Under the Stars into a high-energy Zumba fitness party.