Archive for the ‘cruising Asia’ Category

Redesigned Victoria Jenna Sails China’s Yangtze

August 17, 2016

Victoria Cruises-Jenna

NEW YORK – Having upgraded and transformed its entire fleet – including  the complete overhaul of the Victoria Katarina on two separate occasions in 2010 and 2014 – Victoria Cruises (www.VictoriaCruises.com) is celebrating its latest renovated ship, the Victoria Jenna, after its first major renovation since its launch in late 2009. The six-year-old ship benefits from a complete redesign featuring motifs of modern elegance and a brand new appearance intended to bring the vessel up to speed with the rest of Victoria Cruises’ five-star fleet.

Victoria Cruises retained the same New York-based interior design firm used for its other fleet renovations. As an American-managed company adhering to the strictest Western standards, Victoria Cruises goes to exceptional lengths to ensure the safety, comfort and performance of its vessels exceed the expectation of discerning American and European travelers.

Like its sister ships, all staterooms aboard the Victoria Jenna feature a private balcony from which guests can view the mist-shrouded Yangtze River and the optional Luxury Amenities program is also available for travelers seeking the ultimate experience.

VIP perks provided via the Luxury Amenities add-on include personalized “white glove” service, upper deck placement, access to exclusive ship areas, complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access, exclusive happy hour, and enhanced culinary privileges capitalizing on Victoria Cruises’ reputation for gastronomic excellence including a la carte service and wine and beer with dinner.

“Since the launch of the Victoria Jenna in 2009, the vessel has been surpassed by our own innovations as we’ve modernized the rest of our fleet one ship at a time,” said Larry Greenman, manager of public relations and customer service for Victoria Cruises.

“This is a particularly meaningful milestone for us as we’ve restored the six-year-old vessel’s position as the flagship at the forefront of our elegant, five-star fleet. It also signifies the completion of the extensive fleet-wide redesign we began in 2010,” noted Greenman.

The Victoria Jenna rejoined the fleet on April 11 for Victoria Cruises’ popular Three Gorges Highlights program between Chongqing and Yichang which it will continue to sail with twice weekly departures on Mondays and Thursdays.

Starting at $980 per person, based on double occupancy, the Three Gorges Highlights voyage is offered with three- and four-night options (based on river direction), encompassing views of centuries-old temples, pagodas and stone carvings nestled along the river.

A standard shore excursion package is available for $90 per person and includes tours of Shibaozhai’s famous red pagoda and the Three Gorges Dam as well as a scenic journey on a traditional sampan through Goddess Stream, surrounded by beautiful peaks and teeming with local wildlife from monkeys to mountain goats. Excursions may be substituted based on river conditions and other factors.

The Victoria Jenna is featured in tour packages offered by leading U.S. operators combining the charm and mystique of the Yangtze River with segments in historical Beijing, cosmopolitan Shanghai, the ancient Qin Dynasty capital city of Xi’an and other alluring destinations within China.

New York-based Victoria Cruises established new standards of excellence for sailing China’s Yangtze River when its first ship edged out of port in 1994. Victoria Cruises remains the service leader on the Yangtze River with each ship earning the coveted five-star rating from the China National Tourism Administration. Victoria Cruises has earned numerous awards and recognitions over the years including the 2011 TravelAge West WAVE Award Editor’s Pick for Best River Cruise Line as well as Best New River Cruise Ship in 2010 with the launch of the luxurious Victoria Jenna.  In that same year, Travel Weekly also selected the Victoria Jenna as a Silver Award Winner for the Magellan Awards’ River Cruise Ship category.  The cruise line operates a variety of itineraries on the Yangtze ranging from four to nine days.

For more information and a free color brochure or promotional DVD, contact Victoria Cruises at 136-18 39th Avenue, 12th Floor, Flushing, NY 11354; phone (800) 348-8084, (212) 818-1680; fax (212) 818-9889; e-mail contact@victoriacruises.com or visit http://www.victoriacruises.com.

 

 

 

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Victoria Offers Up to 52% Off Winter Yangtze Cruises Through Heart of China

December 3, 2015
Victoria Cruises-entertain

Entertainment aboard Victoria Cruises.

NEW YORK, NY  – Victoria Cruises, the only American-managed luxury cruise line on China’s Yangtze River, is offering guests up to 52% savings this winter. Private balcony superior staterooms for the popular three-or-four-night sail between Chongqing and Yichang starts at $470 per person, based on double occupancy, in January and February 2016, representing a savings of $510 per person.

Passengers can upgrade to a private balcony Superior Stateroom with Luxury Amenities for $670 per person, based on double occupancy, also a savings of $510 per person. Luxury Amenities include VIP perks such as “white glove” service, access to exclusive ship areas, complimentary Wi-Fi internet access and enhanced dining privileges.

By booking the Shangri-La Suite from $1,510 per person, based on double occupancy, guests will receive more spacious accommodations with Luxury Amenities, saving $1,050 per person.

Winter special sailings will sail downstream on Thursdays and upstream on Sundays.  Offering a truly spectacular way to celebrate the Chinese New Year, Victoria Cruises is also offering additional special sailings with downstream departures on Feb. 8 and 9, 2016 and upstream departures on Feb. 11 and 12, 2016 with an additional surcharge of $200 per person, based on double occupancy.

Departing from Chongqing guests will sail to Shibaozhai, known as “The Pearl of the Yangtze,” where they will observe a 12-story, 18th century wooden pagoda built without the use of a single nail. Passengers will also enjoy an educational tour of the Three Gorges Dam, the largest hydroelectric project in the world, and a small boat excursion on a traditional sampan along one of the Yangtze’s scenic tributaries.

Shore excursions are not included and cost an additional $90 per person for a comprehensive package featuring three standard excursions (may be substituted based on river conditions and other factors).

Victoria Cruises offers many interesting onboard activities such as Tai Chi lessons, acupuncture demonstrations and discussions on the Yangtze’s history. Nightly entertainment options include traditional Chinese dance and musical performances.

Already earning high marks from passengers, Victoria’s dining has introduced new culinary concepts and menus thanks to the addition of award-winning American celebrity chef Walter Staib. The culinary program for the winter special was designed by Staib and includes both western dishes and a la carte dining.

Chef Staib recently won a 2015 Emmy© Award for his Yangtze River episode of PBS’s A Taste of History,filmed aboard one of the Victoria Cruises five-star ships.

All prices are per person, based on double occupancy. Single supplements are available. Itineraries are subject to change based on river conditions.

For more information or to book, or for a list of tour operators which include the Yangtze River in their value-priced winter programs, contact Victoria Cruises toll-free at 800-348-8084 or visit www.VictoriaCruises.com.

 

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Save Up to 50% Off Winter 2015 Yangtze River Sailings with Victoria Cruises

November 26, 2014
Highlights of Victoria Cruises' onboard experience include cultural entertainment featuring traditional Chinese costumes

Highlights of Victoria Cruises’ onboard experience include cultural entertainment featuring traditional Chinese costumes

Victoria Cruises (http://www.VictoriaCruises.com) is kicking off 2015 by offering steep winter discounts on its popular four- and five-day Three Gorges Highlights program throughout January and February 2015.  Reduced rates will start at $470 per person, based on double occupancy, for a superior stateroom with private balcony – a savings of $510 per person.

Passengers can book superior staterooms featuring Victoria Cruises’ Executive Amenities from $670 per person, based on double occupancy.  Executive Amenities offer VIP perks such as “white glove” service, access to exclusive ship areas, complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access, enhanced dining privileges, shoe shine service and reserved seating for evening entertainment.

Victoria Cruises’ Executive Suites, which feature upgraded accommodations and ship placement along with the Executive Amenities previously mentioned, start at $870 per person, based on double occupancy – a savings of $720 per person.

Guests can also cruise in complete luxury by booking the Shangri-La Suite to enjoy even more spacious accommodations with VIP Executive Amenities from $1,510 per person, based on double occupancy – a savings of $1,050 per person.

For a truly spectacular experience, spend Chinese New Year’s onboard with Victoria Cruises’ special holiday with downstream departures on Feb. 19 and 20 and upstream departures on Feb. 22 and 23 with an additional surcharge of $200 per person, based on double occupancy.

Victoria Cruises’ steeply-discounted Three Gorges Highlights winter special sails upstream from Yichang to Chongqing (five days/four nights) as well as downstream from Chongqing to Yichang (four days/three nights) on Victoria Cruises’ lavish five-star vessels.

In addition to spectacular views of centuries-old pagodas nestled along the Yangtze and a scenic passage through the famous Three Gorges, a one-time shore excursion fee of $90 per person (inclusive of all standard excursions) provides travelers with additional experiences including an educational visit to the impressive Three Gorges Dam, a sampan experience along one of the Yangtze’s tranquil tributaries and a trip to Shibaozhai, often referred to as “The Pearl of the Yangtze,” a 12-story wooden pagoda located between Chongqing and Qutang Gorge in Zhong County (may be replaced with a trip to Fengdu, based on weather conditions).

Passengers can also participate in exciting onboard activities such as Tai Chilessons, demonstrations of acupuncture/acupressure and discussions on the Yangtze’s history.  Nightly entertainment options include traditional Chinese dance and musical performances (pictured below).

All prices are per person, based on double occupancy.  Single supplements are available.  Itineraries are subject to change based on river conditions.

For more information or to book, or for a list of tour operators which include the Yangtze River in their value-priced winter programs, contact Victoria Cruises toll-free at 800-348-8084 or visit www.VictoriaCruises.com.

 

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Shanghai, China will be Homeport for Royal Caribbean’s Quantum of the Seas Beginning in 2015

April 18, 2014

Royal Caribbean International announced that its newest ship, Quantum of the Seas, will make its home port in Shanghai (Baoshan), China. “We’re bringing the company’s most innovative ship to the world’s fastest-growing cruise market,” Adam Goldsein, president and COO of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd, said.

The ship will reposition to China in May 2015, following her inaugural winter season sailing out of New York Harbor to the Caribbean. In China, Quantum of the Seas will join Mariner of the Seas and Voyager of the Seas in Asia, increasing the company’s capacity in the region by 66 percent.

“Consumers in China have grown to expect the best the world has to offer, and Quantum of the Seas meets that standard like no other ship,” said Goldstein. “We are ready to accelerate the growth of this vital market with a ship that will capture the imagination of travelers looking for a one-of-a-kind vacation experience.”

“Every trend we are seeing in China tells us we can achieve real long-term competitive advantage and appealing returns on our investments in this fast-growing market by accelerating our presence there,” Goldstein said. “We will have to be nimble, but the ability to move fast is one of our strengths.”

Goldstein said the company was able to make the move because its new-ship pipeline will keep the New York region supplied with top-rate ships as well.
“We are very mindful of the importance of New York, which is why we are bringing Liberty of the Seas and then Anthem of the Seas to this market.”

Quantum of the Seas will debut in November 2014, and will spend its inaugural season sailing from Cape Liberty in Bayonne, N.J., before repositioning to China in May 2015. Beginning late June 2015, the ship will sail three- to eight-night itineraries year-round from Shanghai to Japan and Korea.

Liberty of the Seas will then arrive to Cape Liberty to sail to Bermuda, the Caribbean, and Canada and New England for the 2015 summer and autumn seasons. The Freedom-class ship will be the company’s newest and largest ship to offer cruises to Bermuda from the New York-metropolitan area.

Finally, Quantum of the Seas’ sister ship, Anthem of the Seas, which launches in April 2015, will complete her inaugural Europe season from London (Southampton), U.K., before arriving to Cape Liberty in November 2015 to continue Quantum-class cruising to the Bahamas and Caribbean for the winter 2015-16 season.

“These incredible ships will meet the sophisticated expectations of consumers in Shanghai, New York and London. Our mantra for the new Quantum class of ships is ‘this changes everything’ – and upping our game in these key markets achieves just that,” said Dominic Paul, Vice President, International, Royal Caribbean International. “Our distinctive style of high quality innovative cruises has become known to travelers around the world and we will continue to deploy our most technologically advanced ships where the demand is, with the expectation of winning new converts to cruising.”

The groundbreaking Quantum-class ships, Quantum of the Seas and Anthem of the Seas, will debut a new set of first-at-sea onboard experiences, such as Ripcord by iFLY, a heart-pounding skydiving experience; North Star, a thrilling adventure that transports guests more than 300 feet in the air on a breathtaking journey; cutting-edge transformative venues including SeaPlex, the largest indoor sports and entertainment complex at sea with bumper cars, roller skating and more; and the cruise line’s largest and most advanced staterooms ever.

Guests also will enjoy the new Quantum-class “Dynamic Dining,” a completely new culinary experience that offers a landscape of 18 restaurant concepts as vast and varied as dining in the world’s most cosmopolitan cities, including specialty restaurants created with partner-chefs Jamie Oliver, Devin Alexander and Michael Schwartz.

The Quantum Class spans 18 decks, encompass 167,800 gross registered tons, carry 4,180 guests at double occupancy and feature 2,090 staterooms. More information on Quantum class is available at http://www.RoyalCaribbean.com/QuantumoftheSeas.

Royal Caribbean International is an award-winning global cruise brand with a 45-year legacy of innovation and introducing industry “firsts” never before seen at sea.  The cruise line features an expansive and unmatched array of features and amenities only found on Royal Caribbean including, jaw-dropping, Broadway-style entertainment and industry-acclaimed programming that appeals to families and adventurous vacationers alike.

Owned by Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE/OSE: RCL), the cruise line sails 21 of the world’s most innovative cruise ships to the most popular destinations in the Caribbean, Europe, Alaska, South America, the Far East, and Australia and New Zealand. World renowned for its friendly and engaging Gold Anchor Service, delivered by every staff and crew member, Royal Caribbean has been voted “Best Cruise Line Overall” for 11 consecutive years in the Travel Weekly Readers Choice Awards.

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Victoria Cruises Celebrates 20th Anniversary with 2-for-1 Pricing on Yangtze China Cruises

March 25, 2014
Victoria Cruises is kicking off its 2014 Yangtze River sailing season with special 2-for-1 pricing on all private balcony superior staterooms on its acclaimed Three Gorges Highlights program.

Victoria Cruises is kicking off its 2014 Yangtze River sailing season with special 2-for-1 pricing on all private balcony superior staterooms on its acclaimed Three Gorges Highlights program.

Victoria Cruises (www.VictoriaCruises.com) is kicking off its 2014 Yangtze River sailing season with special 2-for-1 pricing on all private balcony superior staterooms on its acclaimed Three Gorges Highlights program in celebration of the New York-based pioneer’s 20th anniversary carrying Western passengers along China’s most popular cruise experience.

“A lot has changed since our first ship edged out of port in 1994,” said Larry Greenman, manager of public relations and customer service for Victoria Cruises. “The completion of the Three Gorges Dam, for example, has allowed us to build larger, more luxurious ships and venture into new territory with exciting, new excursions added to our program,” Greenman observed.

“We’ve also upgraded our five-star fleet and implemented technological enhancements to streamline operations for passengers’ convenience. In the culinary arena, we’ve added a la carte dining and continue improve our menus through our longstanding relationship with Celebrity Chef and Emmy award-winning host of PBS’s A Taste of History, Walter Staib,” noted Greenman.

“But while much has changed, one thing still remains constant after 20 years exceeding the expectation of discerning travelers – our knowledge and understanding of the Western passenger and our ability to cater to their specific needs with personalized service that is second to none,” said Greenman. “We remain the only American-managed company upholding Western Standards on the Yangtze River.”

Starting at $880 for the first passenger (second passenger is free when booked in conjunction with the 2-for-1 offer), Victoria Cruises’ most popular Three Gorges Highlights program is available in three- and four-night options (based on river direction) and encompasses views of centuries-old temples, pagodas and stone carvings nestled along the mist-shrouded Yangtze.

A standard shore excursion package is available for $90 for the first passenger (second package free with 2-for-1 promotion) and includes tours of the “Ghost City” of Fengdu and Three Gorges Dam as well as a scenic journey on a traditional sampan through Goddess Stream, surrounded by beautiful peaks and teeming with local wildlife from monkeys to mountain goats. Once just a brook, Goddess Stream is a recent addition to the excursion package made possible by the Three Gorges Dam, which raised the stream’s water level and extended its reach to the southern bank of the Yangtze, opposite Goddess Peak (Goddess Stream excursion may be substituted based on river conditions).

From an additional $200 per person (only charged to first guest with 2-for-1 promotion), passengers can upgrade to Victoria Cruises’ Executive Amenities Program featuring enhanced ship placement and a host of VIP additions including “white glove” service, access to exclusive ship areas, complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access, enhanced dining privileges, shoe shine service and reserved seating for evening entertainment (must be reserved in advance).

For more information or to book, or for a list of tour operators which include the Yangtze River in their China programs, contact Victoria Cruises toll-free at 800-348-8084 or visit www.VictoriaCruises.com.

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Azamara Club Cruises Offer ‘Azamazing’ Cultural Evenings on 60 Destination-Immersive Voyages for 2014

February 6, 2014
Azamara Journey

Azamara Journey

Azamara Club Cruises believes that destinations are more than just geography, but rather the sights, sounds and tastes of a region.  With its 2014 AzAmazing Evenings (http://tinyurl.com/mpqh675) program on more than 60 voyages, the cruise line is providing guests the opportunity to further their vacation by enjoying an exclusive, authentic and cultural evening event. Whether enjoying a private, three-tenors performance, set in a 19th century opera house in Livorno, Italy, or joining in a local Burmese festival, guests will find themselves immersed and living the culture rather than just seeing it during a brief visit.

Building upon its carefully crafted itineraries that coincide with major world events, the cruise line simultaneously crafts AzAmazing Evening events that reflect those moments. For example, during Azamara Journey’s “Past to Present: Normandy 70 Years Later,” (http://tinyurl.com/oh7x2bf) guests will be treated to an AzAmazing Evenings event of a D-Day Liberation Party at Cherbourg – exactly 70 years to the day that the landings took place.   Later in the year, guests sailing Azamara Journey’s “A Southern Hemisphere Holiday,” (http://tinyurl.com/dxlsze9) will enjoy a Plataforma 1, one of Rio de Janeiro’s leading samba show houses to see samba’s 500-year history come to life in an eye-popping show, complete with caipirinhas, Brazil’s national cocktail.

These signature events are complimentary and held once a voyage, typically ashore during the evening. On select voyages, the sights and sounds of a region are transferred onboard, where the ship serves as a backdrop for an evening of cultural immersion.  For example when calling at Safaga, Egypt, guests will experience an Egyptian Moulid.  This festival is part carnival and part mystical celebration, and includes ritual dancing, chanting, whirling dervishes and circus performers.

AzAmazing Evening events cover a breadth of activities including night access to some of the world’s best-known sites such as Ephesus; St. Michael’s Cave at the Rock of Gibraltar, or the Chateau Giscours in Bordeaux.  Travelers can narrow down their voyage by destinations or choose a voyage with an event that will add to their experiential portfolio.

“Since its launch, our AzAmazing Evenings program has been incredibly well-received and is providing discerning travelers unique, tailor-made experiences at intriguing destinations around the world,” said Larry Pimentel, president and CEO of Azamara Club Cruises. “Our guests look for experiential opportunities – they already come to us because we are providing longer stays and more overnights at fascinating destinations. But now after extensive research and collaboration we have created custom experiences that allow our guests to experience a destination in a way they may have otherwise never experienced – from interacting with locals at a street party or by offering them private access to world-renowned sites such as Monaco’s Oceanographic Museum.”

For a full list of Azamara Club Cruises’ 2014 AzAmazing Evening events visit, http://www.azamaraclubcruises.com/AzAmazingEvenings.

Azamara Club Cruises offers distinct destination-immersive experiences for up-market travelers. The cruise line features voyages with longer stays and more overnights at ports to provide guests the opportunity to experience night touring at some of the most compelling destinations of Europe, Asia, South America, West Indies, as well as Central and North America.  On board the intimate Azamara Journey and Azamara Quest, guests receive exceptional and personal service and the cruise line’s authentic, exclusive and bespoke AzAmazing Evenings events that showcase the unexpected colors and flavors of a destination.   Guests also enjoy fine cuisine and boutique wines from around the world, as well as more inclusive amenities, such as included gratuities; complimentary bottled water, sodas, specialty coffee, and teas, as well as complimentary boutique wines, international beers and select standard spirits in the ships’ bars, lounges and restaurants when open; complimentary self-service laundry; English Butler service for suite guests; and shuttle transportation to city centers in ports, where available.

For more information, travelers can call their travel professional, dial 1-877-999-9553, or visit www.AzamaraClubCruises.com. Connect with Azamara Club Cruises on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/AzamaraClubCruises, on Twitter @AzamaraVoyages or follow President and CEO @LarryPimentel.

Azamara Club Cruises is a brand of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE/OSX: RCL), a global cruise vacation company that also owns Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Pullmantur, and CDF Croisières de France, as well as TUI Cruises through a 50 percent joint venture.  Together, the six brands operate a combined total of 41 ships with four under construction.  They operate diverse itineraries around the world that call on approximately 460 destinations on all seven continents.

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Royal Caribbean’s Mariner of the Seas Offers 29 New Southeast Asia Sailings for 2014-2015

November 19, 2013

Royal Caribbean International has unveiled 29 new Southeast Asia sailings aboard Mariner of the Seas. Starting in November 2014, Mariner of the Seas will homeport at Singapore and sail three- to five-night itineraries, calling at ports such as Phuket, Thailand, and Penang, Langkawi and Kuala Lumpur (Port Klang) in Malaysia.

A special seven-night itinerary, departing February 11, 2015, will overnight at Bangkok (Laemchabang), Thailand, and call at Ho Chi Minh City (Phu My), Vietnam. Mariner of the Seas’ winter season will conclude with an eight-night itinerary from Singapore to Shanghai (Baoshan), China, departing on March 7, and featuring an overnight at Hong Kong with calls at Ho Chi Minh City (Phu My) and Xiamen, China.

Mariner of the Seas is among six Royal Caribbean ships that exclusively feature the DreamWorks Experience at sea.  Guests can partake in parades, themed activities and other onboard events based on DreamWorks Animation’s popular feature-film characters, including Po of “Kung Fu Panda;” Shrek and Fiona of “Shrek;” and Alex the Lion, Gloria the Hippo, and the Penguins from “Madagascar.” The ship also is equipped with a 3-D movie theater playing the latest DreamWorks Animation films.

Royal Caribbean’s younger guests can enjoy an exhilarating line-up of activities, games and adventures rooted in the popular DreamWorks Animation films in the complimentary and award-winning Adventure Ocean children’s program.

Guests of all ages can meet their favorite characters over the DreamWorks Character breakfast in the main dining room and take advantage of plenty of photo opportunities throughout the day. Additionally, guests can tune-in to DreamWorks Animation programming on a dedicated RCTV channel in every stateroom.

Guests also enjoy the industry’s largest and most premium selection of duty-free shopping, including the first standalone IWC Schaffhausen boutique and the largest luxury and fashion watch store at sea.

The ship’s Casino Royale offers more than 30 table games and nearly 300 slot machines throughout the 9,600 sq. ft. space. Additionally, high-rollers have exclusive access to parlors for high-stakes gaming in comfort, style and privacy.

Mariner of the Seas is one of Royal Caribbean’s Voyager class of ships, which first introduced the active cruise vacation concept. The ships feature iconic Royal Caribbean International amenities such as the rock-climbing wall, ice-skating rink, a nine-hole mini-golf course, full-size basketball and sports court, and the Royal Promenade, a boulevard that stretches nearly the length of the ship and is flanked by restaurants, lounges and boutiques.

As a truly global cruise brand, Royal Caribbean International caters to an international clientele and deploys its cruise ships throughout the world. On Mariner of the Seas’ Asia cruises, Royal Caribbean offers a culturally enriching cruise experience, in which vacationers will find that the majority of fellow guests are from the Asia-Pacific region and speak languages from the region. While guests will enjoy a more authentic regional experience, including additional onboard choices that reflect the region’s tastes and flavors, English is always spoken by the ship’s staff and crew.

For additional information or to make reservations, vacationers should call their travel agent; visit RoyalCaribbean.com; or call (800) ROYAL-CARIBBEAN. Follow on Facebook at Facebook.com/RoyalCaribbean or on Twitter @RoyalCaribbean.

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Save up to 50% on Victoria Cruises Winter ‘Three Gorges Highlights’ Yangtze River Sailings in China

November 19, 2013
Victoria Cruises sails the Yangtze River in China.

Victoria Cruises sails the Yangtze River in China.

Victoria Cruises is offering steep winter discounts on its popular four- and five-day Three Gorges Highlights program, throughout January and February 2014. Reduced rates start at $470 per person, based on double occupancy, for a superior stateroom with private balcony – a savings of $510 per person.

Executive Suites, which feature upgraded accommodations and ship placement along with VIP amenities such as “white glove” service, access to exclusive ship areas, complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access, enhanced dining privileges, shoe shine service and reserved seating for evening entertainment, start at $870 per person, based on double occupancy – a savings of $720 per person.

For the ultimate experience, guests can book the Shangri-La Suite and enjoy even more spacious accommodations with VIP Executive Amenities from $1,510 per person, based on double occupancy – a savings of $1,050 per person.

Executive Amenities are also offered to passengers traveling in standard cabins at a reduced rate of $670 per person, based on double occupancy – a savings of $510 per person.

Victoria Cruises’ steeply-discounted Three Gorges Highlights winter special sails upstream from Yichang to Chongqing (five days/four nights) as well as downstream from Chongqing to Yichang (four days/three nights) on Victoria Cruises’ lavish five-star vessels.

In addition to spectacular views of centuries-old pagodas nestled along the Yangtze and a scenic passage through the famous Three Gorges, a one-time shore excursion fee of $90 per person (inclusive of all standard excursions) provides travelers with additional experiences including an educational visit to the impressive Three Gorges Dam, a sampan experience along one of the Yangtze’s tranquil tributaries and unforgettable sightseeing in the “Ghost City” of Fengdu.

Passengers can also participate in exciting onboard activities such as Tai Chilessons, demonstrations of acupuncture/acupressure and discussions on the Yangtze’s history. Nightly entertainment options include traditional Chinese dance and musical performances.

All prices are per person, based on double occupancy. Single supplements are available. Itineraries are subject to change based on river conditions.

For more information or to book, or for a list of tour operators which include the Yangtze River in their value-priced winter programs, contact Victoria Cruises toll-free at 800-348-8084 or visit www.VictoriaCruises.com.

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Aranui III Celebrates 10 Years Sailing Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia; 14-Day Journey Starts at $2346

February 1, 2013
Aranui III celebrates 10 years sailing through remote Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia (photo credit - Danee Hazama & Julien Avrial)

Aranui III celebrates 10 years sailing through remote Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia (photo credit – Danee Hazama & Julien Avrial)

The new year marks the 10th anniversary of the Aranui III (www.Aranui.com) plying the waters of exotic French Polynesia with an itinerary that includes Tahiti and the remote Marquesas and Tuamotu Islands. The Aranui III is a well-appointed passenger-cargo vessel that offers 17 departures of the two-week cruise with rates starting at $2,346 per person, based on double occupancy.

In celebration of the 10th anniversary, the Aranui III will change the itinerary of its March 16 sailing by combining visits to Puamau and Atuona on Hiva-Oa to one day on March 21 and adding a stop in Bora Bora on March 28. In Puamau, travelers will visit an archeological site followed by lunch and a visit of Paul Gauguin’s grave and the village in Atuona. The visit to Bora Bora includes a picnic on the white sand beach of Motu, a private island, highlighted by roasted pig, shellfish curry and pumpkin pie, snorkeling and swimming with the sting rays.

The Aranui III departs from the Tahitian city of Papeete on a regularly scheduled 14-day journey.

Travelers can take advantage of a special 10% discount offered on select sailings throughout the year including a “Spring Discount” for the Feb. 23 sailing, a “Promotional Discount” for the April 6 itinerary, a “Pre-Summer Discount” for the June 8 sailing and a “Senior Special” for the Aug. 31 itinerary.

Travelers will board the Aranui III for a “Freighter to Paradise” complete vacation experience through 800 miles of the most spectacular and remote islands in exotic French Polynesia including Tahiti, the Tuamotu Islands and Marquesas Islands.

Travelers booking a stay aboard the Aranui III can choose from four different cabin categories – Suite, Deluxe, Standard and Class C – each providing different room configurations.

The Suites are large outside cabins (some with a balcony) featuring a queen-size bed, refrigerator and private bathroom facilities with a bathtub. Rates for a suite start at $5,331 per person.

The Deluxe rooms are large outside cabins designed with a queen-size bed, refrigerator and private bathroom facilities with a bathtub. Rates for the deluxe option start at $4,879 per person.

The Standard rooms are outside cabins with two lower berths and private bathroom facilities. Prices for the standard room start $4,018 per person.

The Class C option is described as a dormitory style room with upper and lower berths, air conditioning but without private bathroom facilities. Prices start at $2,346 per person.

All rates quoted are per person and do not include port tax, cruise tax and tourism tax, which may total up to $350 depending on stateroom category, as well as a fuel surcharge of $100 per person.

The cruise includes three meals with complimentary wine daily, guided excursions outlined in the itinerary, picnic and meals on shore. Optional excursions such as scuba diving and fishing are additional.

For more information or to book an Aranui III vacation, call 800-972-7268 or visit http://www.aranui.com.

 

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Crystal Cruises Includes Complimentary 3-Day Beijing Adventure on New Spring China Voyages

November 20, 2012

Crystal Cruises is taking guests off the ship and through Beijing’s most historic and cultural sites for three nights next spring, as part of two new 2013 cruises to China. For the first time in four years, the all-inclusive Overland Adventure will be featured as a complimentary pre- and post-cruise package on two different luxury cruises, both sailing aboard Crystal Symphony for 10 days before and after the unique land trip:

  • · An “All China” voyage, departing March 23, offering extended time in several of the country’s greatest cities, as follows: Hong Kong (overnight)-Xiamen-Shanghai (two nights)-Dalian-Beijing/Zingang.
  • · A “Pan-Asia” sailing, departing March 30, offering not just a taste of several Asian countries, but plenty of time in port, with several overnights, as follows: Beijing/Zingang-Dalian-Shanghai (overnight)-Pusan, S. Korea-Nakasaki-Kôbe, Japan (two nights). Travelers can sail all the way to North America by also adding the following Kôbe-Vancouver voyage, through Russia and Alaska (Crystal’s only Alaska cruise in 2013), afterward.

“These cruises offer incredible itineraries for easily exploring a region that is fascinating, extremely vast, and growing very quickly in terms of travel popularity,” explains John Stoll, vice president of land and port operations. “To also spend three nights and days immersed in one of the area’s greatest cities, with the benefit of still traveling in Crystal’s signature Six-Star style while on land, brings even more value and destination enrichment to these vacations.”

The Beijing land program provides in-depth exploration of the city and surrounding’s most popular landmarks — like Tiananmen Square, The Great Wall, Olympic Park, and The Forbidden City — as well as exclusive access to intimate cultural experiences – like a rickshaw tour through Beijing’s complex alleyways/hutongs and a spectacular dinner and performance at the government’s Great Hall of the People. Throughout, Crystal provides expert guidance, enriching insight, luxury accommodations, traditional meals, transportation (including transfers between Beijing and the ship), porterage, gratuities, and English-speaking escorts.

Until October 31, all-inclusive “Book Now” fares for the voyages, with Beijing trip included, start at $4,620 and $4,400, for March 23 and 30’s cruises, respectively, with additional savings for combining “back-to-back” sailings. The cruises are also available without the Beijing trip starting at $3,820 and $3,600, respectively.

Crystal’s exclusive, eye-opening luxury shore-side experiences are cornerstones of its Crystal Adventures program, helping earn the line top ratings for two decades.

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

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