The rebrand will see the cruise line initially rename four ships, as Marella Dream, Marella Celebration, Marella Discovery and Marella Discovery 2. New addition, Marella Explorer, starts sailing in summer 2018. Spirit won’t take the Marella name as she leaves the fleet after her final sailing next summer.
The word Marella, which means ‘shining sea’ in Celtic, was chosen by the company to reflect its spirit of exploration and discovery across the seas.
Marella Cruises offers fly cruise programmes linking 22 regional UK airports, as well as a wide Cruise & Stay programme that combines a cruise holiday with a stay at one of more than 140 hotels across 10 destinations worldwide.
To coincide with the launch of Marella Cruises, the company has unveiled new itineraries across Asia as part of its winter 2018 programme. The newly renamed Marella Discovery (currently TUI Discovery) will sail to 18 new ports of call on 14 new adult-only itineraries, including departing from Bangkok, Thailand and Langkawi in Malaysia.
Marella Discovery’s South East Asian itineraries include destinations such as Singapore, Vietnam, Cambodia and Kuala Lumpur. The ship will also sail to India, calling at Mumbai, Mangalore, Mormugao (Goa), Cochin (Kerala) and Colombo (Sri Lanka), and to the Middle East, with highlights including Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Muscat.
As with Thomson Cruises currently, tips and service charges will be included in the price, on all five ships next year.
Helen Caron, distribution and cruise director said: ‘Moving forward as Marella we’ve got brand new, modern additions to our fleet and more destinations, choice and experiences than ever before which really reflects our spirit of exploration and discovery within the new brand.’
Helen Caron continued: ‘Asia is an incredibly diverse part of the world and I have no doubt that our customers are going to love their adventures across countries such as Thailand, Malaysia, India and Oman to name a few.’
For the first time in the company’s history, two ships will be based in Barbados for winter 2018. Marella Explorer will sail its first ever winter season and will be joined by Marella Celebration, operating established itineraries.