Cruise News – August 15, 2014

Cruise News – August 15, 2014

Quantum of the Seas Floats Out with Giant Pink Bear

Royal Caribbean International used the shipyard float-out of Quantum of the Seas to preview the ship’s multimillion-dollar art collection – including a 30-foot-tall, magenta-colored polar bear.


As the 4,180-passenger ship moved from an enclosed building hall to an outdoor dock at Meyer Werft in Germany, the bear sculpture, created for the ship by Denver-based artist Lawrence Argent, was standing guard on an upper deck.

The bear weights 8 tons and is made out of 1,340 stainless-steel triangles, the line said.

The theme of the ship’s 2,980-piece art collection is “What Makes Life Worth Living.” Yup, a giant pink bear somehow fits into that. The ship officially debuts in November.

Stars of The Love Boat to Christen Regal Princess

LoveBoatPrincessCaptain Stubing will be there along with Gopher, Isaac, Doc, Julie, and Vicki when the 3,560-passenger Regal Princess debuts in North America in November. The real-life stars of The Love Boat TV series are slated to serve as the ship’s godmothers and godfathers (yes, that’s allowed by maritime tradition).

The original show, which aired on ABC from 1977 to 1987, helped turn cruising into a popular vacation option. Featured on The Love Boat were real Princess Cruises ships (and even some passengers cast as extras) along with famous guest stars in an array of happy-ending romance vignettes.

The cruise line itself is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2015.

“The show has been such a visible part of our company’s history, it made sense to kick off our anniversary celebrations with this special tribute,” said Princess Cruises President Jan Swartz.

The actors include Gavin MacLeod, a Princess pitchman since 1986; former Iowa Congressman Fred Grandy; Ted Lange; Bernie Kopell; Lauren Tewes; and Jill Whelan.

The christening festivities will take place November 5 in Fort Lauderdale.

Trivia: Charo appeared on the show nine times as entertainer April Lopez and once as Lupe Zapata De Vega Valdez, according to

Princess Cruises also announced that when Regal Princess sets sail from Fort Lauderdale, the ship will debut new, regionally focused menus reflecting cruising regions – in this case, the Caribbean. The new program will feature menu items made with local produce, spices, and seafood. The regional cruise ship menus will eventually roll out across the fleet, featuring local cuisine in places including the Mediterranean, Alaska, and Hawaii.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises Adds Free, Unlimited Internet

RSSCiPad Suite Man 058 smallFor those who want to keep up on Facebook or can’t otherwise be unplugged, the newest perk for most passengers on all-inclusive, all-suite Regent Seven Seas Cruises ships is free, unlimited Internet access.

Those in Master, Grand, Mariner, Seven Seas, Horizon, Navigator and Voyager suites get the unlimited access while those in Penthouse or Concierge suites get complimentary minutes based on cruise length – for instance, 200 minutes on a 7-night cruise.

“By introducing the industry’s only unlimited complimentary internet program aboard our ships, we continue to fulfill our guest promise to deliver the most inclusive experience available, at sea or on land,” said the line’s president, Kunal S. Kamlani.

Not coincidentally, the line recently completed a multimillion-dollar upgrade to systems, which included doubling available bandwidth. There’s Wi-Fi throughout the ships, including in all public spaces, outdoor decks, and in suites.



  • NEWSparkaBook a cruise to Antarctica with Lindblad Expeditions for the 2014-2015 or 2015-2016 season and you’ll get a complimentary vintage-inspired, limited edition parka commemorating the centennial of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expeditions – which you can festoon with patches collected along the route. Fares from $12,350 per person…
  • Book the October 13 departure of Silversea’s Silver Cloud and while cruising from Istanbul, including on the Bosporus, you can peruse an exhibition of one-of-a-kind pieces by legendary Milan jewelers Buccellati, with Luca Buccellati on board representing the family. Yes, along with lectures there will be pieces for sale. Fares from $4,650…
  • Cunard Line’s Queen Victoria is heading into dry dock in January for a multimillion-dollar retrofit that will include the creation of nine single cabins (for solo cruisers) in space that is currently part of the casino, new shaded areas on the sun deck, and additional shopping options.


— Fran Golden


Want to win a 3-night Florida hotel stay?

Vote in the 2014 Readers’ Choice Awards!

Vote in the 2014 Readers’ Choice Awards!

Don’t miss the next Porthole Cruise News: