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HAL heads to sea with Dutch masters and fresh microgreens

HAL senior execs in London last night: Smith, Narraway and Slattery
Dutch masterpieces are heading to sea with Holland America Line 's new Rijksmuseum partnership.

Through a collaboration with the most-visited national museum in the Netherlands, the Rijksmuseum at Sea created by Rijksstudio will be installed on Oosterdam during its scheduled dry dock in April 2016 and move fleet wide over the next couple of years.

Reproductions of some of the museum's famous masterpieces by painters such as Rembrandt and Johannes Vermeer will be showcased throughout the ship and a dedicated creative studio located in the Crow's Nest will display 2-3 pieces at a time that will be replenished several times a cruise where guests can explore their own creativity through free of charge guided art workshops.

In another reveal, the cruise line is partnering with microgreen specialist Koppert Cress to grow fresh ingredients onboard newbuild Koningsdam in the Culinary Arts Centre while enjoying a farm-to-table style menu for dinner.

Michael Smith, svp guest experience and product development at Holland America Line announced the two firsts for the 143 year old brand at a briefing for UK media in London's Mayfair last night.

'Dinner in the Culinary Arts Centre restaurant will see chefs prepare simple artisanal dishes in the show kitchen with a wine pairing with ingredients harvested from the Koppert Cress growing area just before serving,' Smith explained.

The microgreens have distinct flavours like mustard, garlic and liquorice but rather than being used as a garnish they will be used as integral ingredients in the recipes, Smith added.

Joe Slattery, svp global marketing and sales said Holland America Line guests love to travel, to learn and engage. 'Tonight's two reveals are more examples that underscore our new brand messaging: Savor the Journey,' he remarked.

Slattery, Smith and Lynn Narraway, md Holland America Line and Seabourn for UK and Ireland are all looking forward to the impending arrival of its 2,650-berth Koningsdam and its interior designs, by Adam Tihany and Bjørn Storbraaten.

A happy Narraway told Seatrade Cruise News that the UK market is the company's number two international source market (everything outside North America) behind Australia. 'We just recorded 6% year on year growth in the UK and  have got off to a good start in 2016 with particular interest in Europe and South America.'

With no UK-based ship this year all product is fly-cruise. She called this season's Alaska sailings, 'a hot ticket' with the friends and relatives market travelling to British Columbia a great source to draw on. '82% of those Brits who cruise with us in Alaska are new to cruise and we find it provides a great introduction to our brand and we see them repeating with us in other destinations around the world.'