There is a New Ship Arriving!

Oceania Cruise Lines’ philosophy is all about casual elegance in a relaxed atmosphere. There are no tuxedos or evening gowns required on their ships at any time. The staff on board prides itself on learning passengers names, preferences and wishes, all in the interest of making the vacation experience special.

Because of the size of their ships, there is great opportunity to make new acquaintances and create friendships that last a lifetime. Additionally, arriving at a port of call is a pleasant experience with so few passengers disembarking there are no long lines.

An integral aspect of a cruise is the dining experience. Oceania Cruises features a cuisine designed by legendary Master Chef Jacques Pepin, who serves as the Executive Culinary Director for the cruise line. All ships feature an open-seating experience in their four dining rooms allowing passengers to dine when and with whom they choose each evening. If you wish a quiet lingering dinner for two, this is available to you. If you wish to dine with new friends let the party begin, Oceania staff will accommodate your group.

Oceania has enhanced their cuisine by offering selections from the fabled Canyon Ranch spa with innovative ingredients and flavors creating a true sensory experience. Healthy living is featured though many of their dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Menus are creatively designed to reflect the region and ports visited on each cruise.

Oceania’s Canyon Ranch spa experience is one of the best on the high seas. Through fitness opportunities including aerobics, Pilates or yoga, a wide selection of massages, relaxing treatments, lectures and cooking demonstrations, your quality of life will be renewed.

Oceania’s newest ship, the “Marina” is scheduled to debut in January 2011 with a guest capacity of 1258. On January 22nd her first journey will sail across the Atlantic to the Caribbean waters, through the Panama Canal, up the Pacific coast of Mexico.

The ship will have stylish bars and lounges named Martinis, The Patio, and Horizons. There will be 10 dining venues, one will be Jacques, the first restaurant at sea for world-renowned Master Chef Jacques Pepin in addition to the Polo Grill, Toscana and Terrace Café and the Grand Dining Room.

The “Marina” will feature a Bon Appetite Culinary Center, Owner’s Suites furnished exclusively in Ralph Lauren Home and Tocar Interior Designs, and a grand stairway custom-crafted by French glass master, Lalique.

The Veranda Staterooms are 282 square feet and include expansive granite-clad bathrooms. The Penthouse Suites are 429 square feet featuring a separate living area and dedicated dining area. The lavish Vista Suites and Oceania Suites will have large private teak verandas with Jacuzzi tubs and en-suite Media Room.

The exclusive offer for past-passengers to book on the new “Marina” was a huge success, nearly 50% of the cabins released for sale for the first five sailings sold in less than 12 hours. This is a remarkable tribute to the experience passengers enjoyed on previous cruises. For people who plan in advance for their vacations, Oceania Cruises offers the best travel value. Many of their cruises offer two for the price of one (from the brochure price) and free airfare. This offer goes away as the ship cabins are reserved, so planning early is a great incentive.

There are many ships available for a wonderful vacation experience each with their own personality and allure. If you are looking for casual elegance with a small ship feel and enjoy more exotic destinations, Oceania Cruises may be your best fit.

Disadvantages to Cruise Ship Travel

Cruise ship travel is not for everybody. Although many enjoy cruises, some travelers prefer other types of vacations. Before going on a cruise, take time to consider whether or not this is the best method of travel for you. Be sure to research information about the specific companies you are considering as well as read reviews from other customers. Also consider talking to those you know who have traveled on cruises before and see if it sounds like something you would enjoy. It is important to get more information than just a recommendation from someone. What one person finds fun, you may not, so it is important to find out why a person did or did not enjoy a cruise ship experience.

Some do not enjoy cruises simply because of the nature of traveling on a boat. Those who are prone to motion sickness may not enjoy being on a boat because of the high likelihood of experiencing sea sickness. Severity differs for everybody, and sea sickness usually is not serious, but it can still be an unpleasant experience and can ruin a vacation. Consider whether or not this is something that concerns you. Medications and wrist bands help some who suffer from sea sickness, but they are not effective for everyone. For some people, sea sickness runs its course relatively quickly, but only you can decide whether or not this is a possibility you are willing to face.

Others are afraid to cruise because of the possibility of the boat sinking. Only you can decide whether or not you are a person who worries about this possibility. It may help to do some research. Any type of travel has inherent risks, of course. Some are terrified of airplane travel but sill travel on cruises. Others travel frequently on airplanes but would not consider going on a cruise. It is true that being on a boat is a different kind of experience than any other form of travel. Some are not so worried about the boat sinking but are afraid of being out in open water, unable to see the shoreline. Only you can decide whether or not being on the ocean bothers you.

Perhaps the most common fear of cruises in the last decade has been based on the media coverage of viral outbreaks on cruise ships. In the last couple years, this problem has improved, but most travelers are familiar with outbreaks of viruses such as the Norwalk virus. These viruses run rampant on cruise ships because of the large number of people in close proximity to one another for extended periods of time. Although general precautions can certainly decrease a persons’ chances of catching a virus on a cruise ship, it is true that illnesses are more difficult to avoid on a boat.

Along with viruses, crime on cruise ships has also been widely publicized. It is important to research each cruise line and get accurate statistics. Also, read reviews and information to learn how incidents are handled, and make sure you understand the level of security that will be present on the ship. Fortunately, most crime committed on cruise ships is property crime rather than violent crime, and this is relatively common with any type of travel.

Cruise Ship Review – Review of the Celebrity Mercury

The Celebrity Mercury is one of the older ships in the Celebrity fleet. This line of cruise ships have been admired by experienced and first time cruisers alike. Built in 1997 this is an impressive ship, not just in the amenities that it offers but also in the visual appeal and the classic look.

The rooms have more than adequate space for clothing and other luggage and the service is world-renown. The first thing that you will notice when you enter the ship is the grand foyer on the promenade deck. From there you can make your way up to the entertainment deck, another of the eleven decks on this relatively small ship. If you are into small and intimate settings on your cruise then this one is definitely for you.

For your shipboard entertainment, the Celebrity Mercury features the Celebrity Theater in the front of the ship and the Pavilion Night Club in the rear. The Celebrity Mercury has all the attractions of a large size ship such as a casino, a large shopping terrace, the library and even a Martini Bar. The main dining room is supplemented nicely by the ample lido deck buffet and the additional dining rooms.

As a general rule, you cannot go wrong with Celebrity cruise lines. This is a five-star fleet with a jazzy upscale feel. I personally really like smaller ships. I think that the service is better and the passenger per gross tonnage of the ship is often better than the larger ships.

The Celebrity Mercury has all that and more. A first-class cruise and an outstanding experience overall.

First Time Cruising Tips: Getting From The Airport To The Ship Port

When you are going on your first cruise, it can be a little overwhelming trying to plan all of the small details of your trip. One of the details that often falls through the cracks is this: planning transportation from the airport to the cruise port, and then back again when the trip is over. This article is going to help you explore your options for transfers.

1. Cruise Ship Transportation

Many cruise lines offer buses and shuttles from the airport to the cruise port. These prices usually range from $20-$40 each way. The nice thing about booking through the cruise ship is the fact that you know you will get to the right cruise in time. You don’t want to miss the boat!

2. Private Shuttles

There are private companies that can be booked through the airport that offer shuttles to the cruise ports. These shuttles vary in price, and you will need to check their schedule ahead of time to be sure that you will get to the cruise ship in time.

3. Taxis

You can always find a taxi at the airport, and this is a great option to get you where you need to go. Before you get in the taxi, make sure to negotiate a price so that you don’t spend too much on the trip.

4. Private Car Services

There are many private car services that will drive you where you need to go. These services can sometimes be cheaper than taking a taxi, and the cars are much nicer. Ask around at the airport (or look online ahead of time) to find a good reliable car service that can drive you to the port

All of these transportation options are good choices, they will get you where you need to go. But, make sure that you schedule a little bit of extra time to be sure that you aren’t late… because the cruise ship won’t wait!

What to Look for in Cruise Ship Reviews

Individuals who would like to go on a cruise are always advised to look for cruise ship reviews that will help them to decide on which cruise is best. However, most of them are not aware of the specifics details to look for in these reviews. Cruises are different, and a person will have different reasons for wanting to go on a cruise. The reviews will help the person to choose a cruise that focuses on their particular needs during the entire trip.

The first thing to consider is the services offered by the cruise ship. Individuals who would like to have a cruise wedding are likely to look for a cruise ship that offers this service. Those who are on a honeymoon should consider cruise with honeymoon suites, while those on retirement can look for other services. The services offered in the packages will help the individual to determine whether the cruise is right for them.

The second thing to look for is the reputation that the cruise ship has. Most of the reviews are done by professionals in the industry who know all about ships and cruises. Cruise ships that are old and prone to damage should always be avoided. Also, ships where crime has happened should be avoided. An individual should only go on a cruise which they trust since they may be spending weeks or months out at sea on the ship.

The different stops that a cruise ship makes should also be considered. Cruises travel to different destinations throughout the world. There are individuals who would not be comfortable visiting certain ports. Others are looking for specific spots because of the beauty or uniqueness that they offer. They should always read through the reviews in order to know the exact spots before choosing the cruise that they prefer.

The age groups as well as the themes catered for should also be looked at closely. There are cruise ships that do not allow children on board. Therefore, individuals who would like to travel as a family will not be able to board such a ship. Furthermore, certain ships have themes that are directed towards particular interests. Cruises that have sports themes with mini golf and swimming areas will not be enjoyable for individuals who are not sports enthusiasts.

The environment in the cruise ship is also mentioned in a lot of cruise ship reviews. The individuals should always consider this in order to ensure that they are not bored during the trip. Some cruises have a very formal atmosphere, while others have a party or carnival mood. The type of mood that the traveler would like should therefore be considered or they will definitely not enjoy themselves.

It is a fact that cruises are very expensive and individuals who go on such trips always like to get their money's worth. An individual who reads cruise ship reviews will be able to get a clear picture of what a certain cruise is like. This will help them to decide on the particular cruise before they swipe their card or open their wallet.