Thomson Cruises has seen an almost 40% increase in passengers on cruise holidays in the last five years, with numbers in the last year alone having risen by nearly 20%.
TUI Discovery 2 (the former Legend of the Seas) boasts 915 cabins, 40% of which offer balconies plus all inclusive drinks including pour-yourself beer and wine taps in Islands, included in the price of the holiday.
Launching on TUI Discovery 2’s maiden voyage, new onboard app ‘Navigate’ will enable customers to view their onboard account, information about facilities and entertainment schedules, and book onboard extras such as spa treatments, excursions and tables in the a la carte restaurants.
The app, which is free to use, will be hosted on the ship’s network and will open on any browser, meaning passengers aren’t required to download it or purchase wi-fi packages.
Also brand new for TUI Discovery 2 is Virtual Reality Experience, where guests can use HTC Vive headsets to play games, make 3D paintings or explore universes; and Green Screen Room, an onboard photobooth that allows passengers to take a picture with a background of their choice.
New shows as part of the onboard entertainment include Brexfactor, Chaplin, Festival Live and Steel City.
A time-lapse video which shows a behind-the-scenes look at the ship’s transformation in dry dock.
Based in Malaga this summer, TUI Discovery 2 will visit Barcelona, Valencia, Ibiza, Porto, Lisbon and Marseille before repositioning to Tenerife in September, visiting ports in the Canaries, Morocco and Madeira.
In December, TUI Discovery 2 will make its way to Montego Bay, Jamaica where it will begin its winter season in the Caribbean visiting Central American destinations such as Cuba, Belize, Panama, Costa Rica and Colombia.
Managing director of Thomson Cruises, Richard Sofer, said: 'We’re delighted to be launching TUI Discovery 2, the second in our pipeline of four new additions to our fleet. The move to name this latest addition to the fleet TUI Discovery 2 is part of the re-brand which will see the whole of Thomson transition to TUI later this year.
Also joining the fleet from May 2018 is the newly announced TUI Explorer, currently sailing with TUI Cruises as Mein Schiff 1.