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Articles from 2010 In June


Rescompany installs Resco SMS on over 20 vessels

Rescompany installs Resco SMS on over 20 vessels

One of the largest installations for Resco SMS was on Thomson Cruises’ 1,500-passenger Thomson Dream, the former Costa Europa, which is on a 10-year charter to the UK operator and based in the Mediterranean this summer following a major refit.

‘These installations were a mix of new customers and new ships for existing customers and while it is important for our business to gain new customers our priority is in keeping our current customers happy,’ said Peter Winqvist, managing director of Rescompany Systems.

To ensure support levels are kept at the highest levels, Winqvist noted the company has been increasing its resources.

A peek into Epic’s Courtyard complex

A peek into Epic’s Courtyard complex

Seatrade Insider got a peek at this oasis of tranquility in what is otherwise a very busy ship with Fredrik Johansson, Tillberg Design’s partner and senior architect.

‘The Courtyard was created to become almost like a ship within the ship, an opulent, slightly decadent private zone totally self-contained from the rest of the ship. It’s designed to make you feel on top of the world,’ he said.

Johansson added that the concept, on the edge of being hedonistic, is something found in many of the world’s top hotels: ‘So why should we not have it on Norwegian Epic?’

The 60 suites and villas on two private decks at the top of the vessel form that chunky part of Epic’s distinctive forward profile. The complex encompasses a courtyard pool, two whirlpools, a gym, saunas, sun deck, concierge lounge, bar/nightclub and, new on Epic, indoor/outdoor dining.

The bar/nightclub sports elements of Dubai and South Beach, with golden columns, burgundy crushed velvet sofas, plump accent pillows and ottomans. The effect is both opulent and fun. A grand piano and a small dance floor complete the room.

The space flows into the Courtyard Grill. This contemporary, elegant restaurant offers widely spaced tables draped in crisp white linens with high-backed fabric and dark-wood armchairs. Panels of string curtains add an intriguing look. Two walls contain wine cellars. There’s an al fresco dining area, too.

The spacious, multi-room accommodations have marble baths with ample dressing areas and whirlpool tubs—some with full sea views, plush fabrics and sumptuous appointments. The rooms visited by Seatrade Insider had an Asian motif with paintings of lotus flowers and rich accent colors.

There are 46 Courtyard Villas with two bedrooms and two bathrooms. Six Courtyard Penthouses include a bedroom with separate living and dining area. Eight Deluxe Owner’s Suites feature all-around floor to ceiling windows, bedroom and separate living and dining area. (There are also seven Penthouse Suites located in other areas of the ship.)

The Courtyard complex ‘attracts a new segment of luxury traveler that we don’t believe has bought a cruise before,’ said NCL’s Andy Stuart, evp global sales and passenger services. He cited younger couples and families with children who want an upscale experience within a ship that provides lots of entertainment and dining options, children’s activities and kids for their kids to play with.

Ramón Santos of corporate cruise and meetings specialists Landry & Kling, Inc. in Miami thinks the concept is ‘exciting,’ especially with the addition of the restaurant. ‘One of the neatest things for the corporate and incentive market is the whole suites/Courtyard Villas complex. You can do a buyout for a group,’ he said.

NY’s Dutch heritage inspires Nieuw Amsterdam’s $3m art collection

NY’s Dutch heritage inspires Nieuw Amsterdam’s $3m art collection

Continuing the tradition of the rest of Holland America Line fleet, Nieuw Amsterdam features art and antiques from traditional Dutch masters and works by renowned contemporary artists. HAL worked with VFD Architects of the Netherlands and Yran & Storbraaten of Norway to create a collection that complements the ship’s interior design.

‘At a cost of more than $3m, we’ve installed an array of works ranging from glass creations and oil paintings to detailed collages and unique hanging sculptures,’ said HAL’s Rick Meadows, evp marketing, sales and guest programs.

Some pieces represent the Dutch Golden Age while others, such as the atrium centerpiece, are contemporary. Passengers will be able to check out a free, self-guided iPod art tour at the ship’s information desk. The tour will also be available to download at www.hollandamerica.com and on iTunes in early July.

Included in the collection is a variation on the fleet’s Lido Pool sculpture. Designed by Bjørn Storbraaten, the piece is made of lightweight stone and doubles as an eight-foot-high waterfall passengers can walk through as they enter or leave the pool. As with its sister-sculpture aboard Eurodam, the stone is subtly engraved with the word ‘water’ in 100 languages.

Nieuw Amsterdam showcases its Dutch connection to New York throughout the ship. The atrium chandelier was created by husband and wife Italian artists Gilbert LeBigre and Corinne Roger. The piece is an abstract sculpture of the New York skyline made from translucent blocks.

As he has done for the entire HAL fleet, noted British maritime artist Stephen Card has created paintings of ships that bear the Nieuw Amsterdam name, past and present. Displayed in the mid-ship staircase are four paintings by Dutch artist Vincent Jansen that include symbols and elements related to the history and founding of New York.

Outside the Pinnacle Grill is a contemporary sculpture by Dutch ceramic artist Paula Bastiaansen, whose technique features porcelain worked into paper-thin, transparent shapes. In the aft staircase and lower Dining Room are a series of paintings by Wessel Huisman, who draws inspiration from old photographs of New York.

More New York-themed art is found throughout, including works by such stars as Andy Warhol, Richard Estes and Roy Lichtenstein, whose pieces symbolizes the artistic vibrancy of New York in the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s.

Nieuw Amsterdam staterooms blend modern, historical elements

Nieuw Amsterdam staterooms blend modern, historical elements

‘We received such positive feedback about the stateroom décor aboard Eurodam that we knew we wanted to continue this innovative direction with her sister ship,’ said HAL’s Rick Meadows, evp marketing, sales and guest programs. Nieuw Amsterdam’s rooms are ‘an evolution of Eurodam’s modern design vision and meld earthy tones into fabrics and wall coverings,’ he added.

The stateroom décor reflects contemporary art influences that tie in classic themes. Mixed-media wall art that combines classical painting with surrealist themes plus colorful abstract landscapes and historic photographs of old New York and Amsterdam adorn the walls.

The artwork is paired with sophisticated bedding, upholstery and furnishings that give a nod to the historic glamour of New York City, known as Nieuw Amsterdam to its Dutch founders.

‘With all of the exciting activities that take place on a cruise ship, we wanted to create a stateroom environment that is an escape for guests to relax and enjoy, yet at the same time remains visually intriguing,’ said Nancy Burfiend, principal, NB Design Group.

The ship’s 60 deluxe verandah suites and 50 superior verandah suites emphasize rich walnut wood and powder blue and Champagne-colored fabrics, along with contemporary leather furniture and brushed nickel finishes. Deluxe verandah suites will display reproductions of original Matisse and Picasso drawings, along with colorful Tuscany landscapes created from original woodcuts.

Superior verandah suites also use historic photographs of New York and Amsterdam and colorful reproductions of original paintings by avant-garde Dutch artist Karel Appel.

Following similar themes with understated colors and woods paired with classical art themes, the ship’s two penthouse verandah suites were designed by Architectenbureau VFD of Utrecht.

Nieuw Amsterdam’s 558 deluxe verandah ocean-view and 175 ocean-view staterooms showcase coffee, burgundy and sandstone tones in window coverings, bedding and fabrics, plus rich wood and metal accessories. Artwork includes reproductions of Surrealist oil paintings and feature classical themes combined with contemporary photography.

The 152 interior staterooms switch color schemes to light maple wood, bedding and fabric in slate and sky blue with tangerine accents.

Nieuw Amsterdam’s accommodations also include 56 luxury spa staterooms across several categories with two exclusive spa deluxe verandah suites located on the two highest decks. Named for their proximity to the Greenhouse Spa and Salon, the staterooms give special in-room amenities such as yoga mats and an iPod docking station.

All spa accommodations are decorated in a naturalist theme, with furnishings, bedding and window treatments finished in soft earth tones with bright aqua blue and charcoal accents. A water feature provides a soothing ambient background sound.

Oceania outlines comprehensive fleet update initiative

Oceania outlines comprehensive fleet update initiative

It revolves around three Oceania hallmarks: comfort, cuisine and service.

The 684-passenger Nautica, the first ship to undergo its ‘Pillars of Distinction’ update, re-entered service June 4. Sister Insignia will incorporate the changes in November and Regatta in January. All work is occurring during regularly scheduled drydocks.

Pillars of Distinction amenities and design highlights will be incorporated on newbuilds Marina and Riviera, as well.

Oceania founder Frank Del Rio, chairman and ceo of Prestige Cruise Holdings, said the initiative is to ensure an ‘unmatched’ experience in the upper premium category.

Penthouse Suites will be enhanced with more luxurious amenities and new décor highlights. Custom, tufted headboards with nail-head trim mounted on floor-to-ceiling Wenge walnut panels provide a dramatic focal point.

Oceania said the new Prestige Tranquility Beds raise the standard it set in 2003 by sparking the luxury bedding trend at sea. The bed is composed of 400 encapsulated springs in seven zones covered by two inches of memory foam; a two-inch thick cushion filled with gel and wrapped in Chamomile-infused fiber tops the mattress. Beds will be dressed with 1,000-thread-count, Egyptian cotton linens and duvets and a plush down comforter.

All accommodations will be outfitted with refrigerated mini bars, sconces and bedside reading lamps, as well as updated furnishings and bath amenities.

The Polo Grill steak house will get new décor, menus will be enhanced in Terrace Café and Toscana, and Canyon Ranch Spa Cuisine is being introduced.

Polo Grill enhancements include new leather chairs, carpeting and drapes in crimson, claret, gold and hunter.

The casual Terrace Café with both indoor and al fresco seating will expand its breakfast, lunch and dinner buffets. Sushi, sashimi and made-to-order pasta dishes will be complemented with regional delicacies in certain destinations.

Toscana, the Italian venue, will enhance its menu with a gourmet olive oil menu and new favorite family recipes from staff and crew.

In the second phase of Oceania’s Canyon Ranch partnership, breakfast, lunch and dinner menus in the Grand Dining Room and Terrace Café will add ‘Spa Cuisine’ selections developed by the culinary team at Canyon Ranch Health Resorts.

Enrichment programs are expanding with new destination experiences and, on select sailings, Canyon Ranch Healthy Living Experts will offer classes and workshops addressing lifestyle change, healthy living, stress management and other topics.

Many ports will add special shore experiences. New tours and excursions include visits to the pope’s private place of worship at the Vatican, an ‘Alaskan Chef’s Table’ and photo safaris in Kenya, among others.

Oceania said ‘Pillars of Distinction’ is an ongoing initiative, with more updates and enhancements to be announced.

Sperry Marine VisionMaster guides Aegean Odyssey

Sperry Marine VisionMaster guides Aegean Odyssey

The ship’s bridge has been refitted with a complete navigation package based on Northrop Grumman’s Sperry Marine VisionMaster FT™ technology. The scope of supply includes radars, electronic chart display and information system, gyrocompass, autopilot, ship steering system and other sensors.

SRH Marine Electronics, Northrop Grumman’s sales and service agent in Greece, was responsible for installation, commissioning, testing and technical support, as well as operator training.

The 461ft Aegean Odyssey can carry up to 388 passengers and 200 crew members was refitted to Lloyd’s Register classification requirements and will sail under the Maltese flag. Next cruise is a 15 day sailing departing June 15 from Venice to Istanbul.

‘The Sperry Marine VisionMaster FT systems provide proven technology and inherent flexibility to meet the ship’s requirements for safe and efficient navigation in a cost-effective manner,’ said J. Nolasco DaCunha, vice president of Naval Systems International at Northrop Grumman’s Naval and Marine Systems Division.

NCL sheds more light on that Epic chandelier

NCL sheds more light on that Epic chandelier

It spans three decks of the ship, with vantage points from the casino, Teppanyanki Restaurant, Wasabi Sushi Bar, Malting’s Whiskey Bar and Shaker’s Martini Bar.

The chandelier was designed by UK-based SMC Architects and Lighting Design and built in Vienna by crystal-maker Kalmar.

It consists of approximately 40,000 crystal glass pieces and will change colors in up to 255 possible variations. The design is of spiraling oval discs, each up to 30ft in circumference, and 112 suspended crystal encrusted balls of up to one foot in diameter, which orbit the main structure at varying heights.

The energy-efficient chandelier is fully illuminated by LED technology, using more than 10,000 diodes, and is fully dimmable.

The chandelier was installed in a three-week process and is currently being programmed by UK-based Project International.

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