Norwegian Cruise Line Gives Sneak Peek Into Project Leonardo

by Daniel McCarthy
Norwegian Cruise Line Gives Sneak Peek Into Project Leonardo

Norwegian Cruise Line’s four next-generation ships will be delivered each June starting in 2022.


At Seatrade on Wednesday, Norwegian Cruise Line showcased a few details about its four next-generation ships, part of an agreement it signed with Fincantieri S.p.A. shipbuilders last month.

The ships, which will be delivered every June starting in 2022, are designed to “bring guests closer to the sea,” president and CEO Frank Del Rio said.

They will sport huge lower decks, which Del Rio called “Beach Decks,” with infinity pools and restaurants. “We’re famous for breaking molds and going against the grain,” he said.

The ships will all come in at 140,000 gross tons and will carry 3,300 guests—a number small enough to still allow the ship to enter smaller ports. “It provides flexibility to deploy these vessels around the world,” Del Rio said. More details about the new builds will be released in coming months, including some “breakthrough technologies” that will enhance the guest experience.

Norwegian Bliss
The third ship in Norwegian’s Breakaway Plus class, Norwegian Bliss, will debut in June 2018, sailing from Seattle to Alaska.

Bliss, which enters the Breakaway Plus class after Escape and Joy, will be sailing out of Seattle’s new Pier 66, a “brand new guest experience,” senior PR director Vanessa Picariello told reporters.

Bliss’s observation lounge will span the entire forward part of the ship and will provide 22,000 square feet of lounge space, each foot with access to a 180-degree view of where the ship is headed. In the middle of the lounge, Norwegian has installed a bar with a polished aluminum front and a granite top.

The ship’s “ship within a ship” complex, The Haven, has been “designed to give folks the luxury cruise experience with the bells and whistles of a big ship and the ability to sail with their families,” Picariello said.

The Haven on Bliss will have the same number of suites as on Escape, but the public area will be doubled, with a new two-story observation lounge as its centerpiece feature. The observation lounge will open at the front part of the ship, giving guests “the connection with the destination you’re sailing to,” Picariello said.

Cuba update
The Cuban-born Del Rio, who emigrated in 1961 right before his seventh birthday, told reporters that “so far Havana and Cuba in general have been very well received by our guests.”

The first five sailings “sold like nothing else we’ve ever seen before,” at meaningfully higher prices.

Norwegian’s Cuba itineraries, which started this month, leave Miami Monday afternoons and land in Havana on Tuesday morning. The ship then stays over Tuesday night and until 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, when it departs to Great Stirrup Cay, and then returns to Miami on Friday morning.

There are 15 different shore excursions in Cuba, including “The Life of Hemingway in Havana,” “The Legendary Tropicana Cabaret” and “The Art Of Cuba – Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow.” All shore excursions are OFAC-compliant.

“We’re very pleased with the performance on the shore excursions; guests were very happy,” Del Rio said. 

  2
  0
Tip of the Day
Daily Top List

Five Places to Go for Spring Travel

1. Carlsbad, Calif.

2. Aspen, Colo.

3. Kauai, Hawaii.

4. Cabo San Lucas

5. Washington, D.C.

Source: Forbes

TMR THIS WEEK
http://services.travelsavers.com/AMGService.svc/REST/GetImage?ImageID=e0eb53ad-f047-e811-ba59-782bcb66a2f2

Must-See Mediterranean Boutique Ports, Sans the Crowds

Sponsored by Seabourn Cruise Lines

As summer travel heats up, exploring lesser-known seaside towns delivers an intimate and romantic experience, minus the throngs of tourists often found at larger commercial ports. 

TMR Recommendations
Top Stories
Victory Cruise Lines Makes Inaugural Call at Port Miami
Victory Cruise Lines Makes Inaugural Call at Port Miami

Victory I sails first to Cuba on a 15-night roundtrip itinerary and then heads to Canada and New England for the summer, while Victory II prepares to journey to the Yucatan.

Cruise Lines Pull Their Weight in Social Responsibility and Conservation Battles
Cruise Lines Pull Their Weight in Social Responsibility and Conservation Battles

The industry's top cruise operators talk about their efforts to help save the ocean and improve local communities.

Almost a Century Since Its Launch, Tauck Continues to Be Driven by Guest Loyalty
Almost a Century Since Its Launch, Tauck Continues to Be Driven by Guest Loyalty

The variety of products offered by Tauck allows travel agents to shuffle clients between river, land, and sea adventures, to give them the exact vacations they want.

AmaWaterways Talks Emerging Markets, Onboard Security, and European Overcrowding
AmaWaterways Talks Emerging Markets, Onboard Security, and European Overcrowding

The cruise operator is taking steps to open up the market to lure in the ocean cruiser who has not yet considered river cruising.

Royal Caribbean Will Return to Turkey Next Year
Royal Caribbean Will Return to Turkey Next Year

Along with sailing again to Turkey, the line is upgrading Mariner of the Seas for Millennials and bolstering its Espresso agent reservation system.

Travel Agents and Cruise Lines Look Ahead at CLIA Cruise 360
Travel Agents and Cruise Lines Look Ahead at CLIA Cruise 360

Major cruise operators talk about the 'why' behind their brands and the opportunities for travel agents to grow their cruise business over the next five years.

News Briefs
TMR Report Cards
Advertiser's Voice
Advertiser's Voice: Luxury Retreats