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Countdown to New Cunard Ship Begins as First Steel is Cut

Countdown to New Cunard Ship Begins as First Steel is Cut

Cunard and Fincantieri celebrated the start of construction on the 249th ship of the luxury cruise line, marking an exciting moment in the company’s 179-year history.  

The yet unnamed ship, which is being built to meet the growing global demand in luxury cruising, is set to reimagine the luxury cruise experience with an array of unique and exciting on board amenities. 

The first section of the ship is under construction at Fincantieri’s Castellammare di Stabia ship yard. The shipbuilding group previously delivered Cunard’s popular and world-renowned Queen Victoria in 2007 and Queen Elizabeth in 2010. 

The steel cutting ceremony is a keystone-event in the life of Cunard’s new ship, marking the commencement of building works that will culminate in its delivery in Monfalcone, Gorizia, Italy, in 2022. 

Of the occasion, Simon Palethorpe, President, Cunard said, “After years of planning and design, we are delighted to see building works commence on our newest ship. The 249th Cunarder will be our fourth luxury liner for the 21st century. The new ship is taking inspiration from the successes of our past, integrating the Cunard spirit with exciting new concepts and ideas that will provide a uniquely luxurious travel experience for our guests.”

Mr Gilberto Tobaldi, Castellammare Shipyard Director, Fincantieri added, “We are very proud to be embarking on this next chapter of Cunard’s history with the start of the build of their newest ship and we look forward to working with the Cunard and Carnival UK teams over the next months.”

Cunard used the auspicious occasion to announce the commissioning of a unique sculpture, masterly crafted from the first piece of metal cut for the new ship. Acclaimed sculptor Sam Shendi will complete the work, which will be displayed on board the ship for Cunard’s guests to enjoy. Shendi is an Egyptian-born, British sculptor and uses contemporary industrial material, steel, stainless steel, aluminium and fibreglass to create his figurative work. 

Shendi said, “I’m really looking forward to working with the Cunard team and to be given the challenge of creating a sculpture from the first piece of steel cut for their new ship is such a unique opportunity. It would be exciting for any artist to be part of such a long history and know that their artwork will travel the world on the ship connecting guests from all corners of the globe.”

With construction underway, the new ship’s interior designers will work alongside Fincantieri to deliver a one of a kind on board experience. Led by globally acclaimed designer Adam D. Tihany, the award winning design team includes Simon Rawlings (David Collins Studio), Terry McGillicuddy (Richmond International) and Sybille de Margerie (Sybille de Margerie Paris). Each brings experience from various world-class international hotels and resorts with the aim of delivering a new standard of Cunard luxury.


Aeroflot wins at Business Traveller Awards 2019 affirming global leadership among premium airlines

Aeroflot wins at Business Traveller Awards 2019 affirming global leadership among premium airlines

Aeroflot has won at the Business Traveller Awards for the second straight year reconfirming global leadership among premium carriers. The prestigious award in the Best Eastern European Airline category was presented by UK magazine Business Traveller at a gala-ceremony in London.

“We are pleased to receive the prestigious accolade from Business Traveller," said Aeroflot CEO Vitaly Saveliev. “Our recognition based on the opinion of discerning business travellers choosing Aeroflot has confirmed the airline’s leading positions in the premium segment of the world’s airline market. Our key competitive advantages of punctuality, optimal value-for-money and strong connectivity are instrumental in Aeroflot’s further expansion as a global player in line with our 2023 Strategy”.

The Business Traveller Awards are among the most authoritative in the industry, and have been a fixture of the business travel and hospitality annual calendar since 1988. The award programme comprises dozens of nominations to recognize the best service providers of the global travel industry. The results of the poll of the magazine’s readers are authenticated by an independent auditing company, and are widely recognised as the market’s benchmark for excellence.

Business Traveller is the leading magazine for frequent business travellers, with 14 editions worldwide. Launched in the UK in 1976, Business Traveller has become the leading magazine around the world for corporate travellers who seek out superior service whether on the road for business or pleasure.

Aeroflot has gained an array of international awards based on both passenger and expert polls. Last month, the Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) extended Aeroflot’s Five Star Global Airline rating through 2020. Aeroflot was named Best Airline in Eastern Europe for the eighth time at this year’s Skytrax World Airline Awards. The high quality of the airline’s service is sealed with the 4-Star airline status from Skytrax. Aeroflot has been granted the highest five-star rating for punctuality from the world's leading provider of travel data and insight OAG.

Source: Aeroflot News

Seabourn Offers Guests An Unforgettable And Immersive Australia & New Zealand Upcoming Season, Showcasing More Inaugural Port Calls

Seabourn Offers Guests An Unforgettable And Immersive Australia & New Zealand Upcoming Season, Showcasing More Inaugural Port Calls

 Seabourn, the world’s finest ultra-luxury travel experience, will return to Australia and New Zealand in December 2019, including a number of new exciting ports around the picturesque country. In total, Seabourn Encore and Seabourn Sojourn will make 40 calls across Australia this summer season, along with a number of diverse, insightful port calls across the island nation of New Zealand.

From December 2019 to April 2020, Seabourn’s two ultra-luxury ships will visit boutique ports, sheltered coves and hidden harbours that larger cruise ships often cannot access as well as favorite marquee ports, with a variety of onboard offerings and on-shore experiences that cater to every type of traveler.

Sailing the awe inspiring South Pacific Ocean from December to March, the cruise line will make its first ever call to Portland, Victoria, site of the first permanent European settlement in the state, when Seabourn Encore visits on March 14. Other maiden ship calls include Seabourn Encore’s first visits to Hobart (March 11), Kangaroo Island (March 15) and Adelaide (March 16). This is a very unique and exhilarating itinerary with its heavy emphasis on ports in the east and south, including New South Wales, Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia.

Seabourn Sojourn will visit six Australian ports as part of her world cruise, including her first calls to Airlie Beach, the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef (April 24) and Brisbane (April 26), officially closing the cruise season on April 29 as the last international ship scheduled to depart Sydney.

“We are thrilled to offer our guests so many choices in ultra-luxury cruising in Australia and New Zealand this year,” said Chris Austin, senior vice president of Global Marketing & Sales for Seabourn. “This fascinating, beautiful part of the world provides our guests with a wide array of extraordinary destinations and experiences in a way that only Seabourn can deliver.”

New Zealand shines aboard Seabourn Encore where guests can visit this multi-cultural nation of people from Maori, European, Pacific, and Asian origin, who are often regarded as warm and friendly. A selection of departures from December 2019 through February 2020 offer plenty of options to explore this nation of two main and many small nations in depth in locations such as Milford Sound, a UNESCO World Heritage site and New Zealand’s most famous tourist destination. Other port calls include Timaru, where the South Canterbury Museum traces the history of the region from the Maori arrival to the present; Lyttelton (Christchurch), where historic Antarctic voyages began and home of the Christchurch Botanic Gardens; and Wellington, with its crown jewel Te Papa, a museum of Australasian natural history, science and culture.

With multiple cruises around Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific, guests will witness sweeping landscapes, stunning waterfalls, pristine beaches and wildlife eye-to-eye in ultra-luxury style aboard Seabourn’s intimate ships. As the Official Cruise Partner for UNESCO World Heritage, Seabourn guests will also have the opportunity to visit iconic and cherished sites such as Daintree National Park, Sydney Opera House and the Great Barrier Reef as part of Seabourn’s pre- and post-cruise Seabourn Journeys which can be added to itineraries.

Inspired by the rising interest in mindful, healthy living, Seabourn will bring a dedicated wellness cruise to Australia and New Zealand for the first time in February 2020. Celebrated physician and best-selling author Dr. Andrew Weil will join guests on board with a team of wellness experts. Sailing from Auckland, New Zealand to Sydney, Australia through Milford Sound, the onboard itinerary will include lectures, discussions, classes and demonstrations led by Dr. Weil and his team to help guests enrich their lives for better mental and physical health.

Further highlights of the season include:

Discover the exotic isles of the Indonesian Archipelago, port in Darwin and visit the UNESCO World Heritage Great Barrier Reef before finishing in Sydney with the 24-Day Java Sea & Coral Coast cruise. Travel dates November 27 to December 21, 2019.
• The 17-Day Orchard Isles & Coral Coast itinerary departs Bali and travels along the Australian coastline to Sydney. Travel dates December 4 to 21, 2019.
• Celebrate the holiday season with the 33-Day Gems of the Southern Seas cruise which departs from Denpasar, Bali and explore the Indonesian isles, east coast of Australia and all three islands of New Zealand. Travel dates December 4 to January 6, 2020.
• Seabourn’s favourite antipodean itinerary is a 16-Day survey of all three New Zealand islands before visiting Melbourne and Sydney Harbour. Travel dates December 21 to January 6, January 20 to February 5 and February 5 to 21, 2020.
• Departing Sydney with a stop in Melbourne, 30-Day Treasures of New Zealand is Seabourn’s most immersive exploration of “The Land of the Long White Cloud,” which also visits Norfolk Island. Travel dates December 21, 2019 to January 20, 2020.
• 16-Day Wellness cruise departs from Auckland and explores both of New Zealand’s beautiful islands before sailing to Melbourne and Sydney. Travel dates February 21 to March 8, 2020.
• Ventures by Seabourn optional for-charge expedition-style excursions including Zodiacs and kayaks delivered by a world-class team of experts in a variety of fields such as marine biology, ornithology, and geology. The team also interacts with guests throughout the course of the sailing through presentations, interpretation on the outdoor decks of the ship, and even during meals. Available in select ports on itineraries departing in 2019 on November 27, December 4 & 21, and 2020 departures on January 6 & 20, February 5 & 21, March 8 & 22, and April 7.

Seabourn represents the best of ultra-luxury travel with intimate ships offering key elements that set the line apart: spacious, thoughtfully appointed suites, many with verandas and all 100% ocean front; superb dining in a choice of venues; complimentary premium spirits and fine wines available on board at all times; award-winning service and a relaxed, sociable atmosphere that makes guests feel right at home on board.



New York/New Jersey Her Art Here Themed Livery Takes Flight on United Airlines

New York/New Jersey Her Art Here Themed Livery Takes Flight on United Airlines

United Airlines has officially welcomed a one-of-a-kind livery to its fleet that was created by a New Jersey native as a tribute to the New York/New Jersey region the airline serves from its Newark Liberty International Airport hub. Designed by artist Corinne Antonelli, the Boeing 757 features iconic imagery from the two states including the historic Red Mill in New Jersey, the New York City skyline and the Statue of Liberty, as well as a globe signaling United Airlines worldwide connectivity. 

Ms. Antonelli designed the aircraft as part of United's Her Art Here contest, a competition that gave female artists the chance to use an airplane as their canvas and inspire women around the world who are interested in a career in the arts. According to the National Museum of Women in the Art, while 51% of today's artists are women less than 13% of art on display in museums in the U.S is by female artists.

"It still feels like I am dreaming! I have seen the design on paper countless times, but now to see it, at its full scale in the physical world, there are no words to describe how proud I feel. My goal as an artist is to have people experience my art rather than just view it in a gallery, therefore having it displayed on an airplane has certainly been the most rewarding feeling I've ever experienced in my art career," noted Antonelli, who lives in Washington, NJ and is studying illustration at Ringling College of Art and Design in Florida.

Her Art Here is the first-of-its-kind contest designed to find and uplift underrepresented women artists by providing a chance to have their work painted on a canvas like no other — a United Airlines aircraft. Having their designs painted on a Boeing 757 provides artists with a traveling canvas that flies on average 1.6 million miles a year and 476 cross-country trips. The aircraft is roughly 3,666 times larger than the typical 18" x 24" canvas.

The Her Art Here contest was open to those who identify as a woman, including cisgender, transgender, woman-aligned or non-binary, and reside in the United States, and asked artists to visually represent either New York/New Jersey or California, two key markets for the airline, in their own style, while combining the company's mission and what the communities in each region mean to the artist. Entries were scored by a panel of judges based on contest criteria and winners were determined based on a combination of judging scores and public voting. The California livery will be unveiled in the coming weeks.

Every customer. Every flight. Every day.

In 2019, United is focusing more than ever on its commitment to its customers, looking at every aspect of its business to ensure that the carrier keeps customers' best interests at the heart of its service. In addition to today's announcement, United recently announced that luxury skincare line Sunday Riley will make products exclusively for United customers to experience in amenity kits, released a re-imagined version of the most downloaded app in the airline industry, introduced ConnectionSaver, a new tool dedicated to improving the experience for customers connecting from one United flight to the next and made DIRECTV free for every passenger on 211 aircraft, offering more than 100 channels on seat back monitors on more than 30,000 seats.


Cunard announces new 2021 programme

Cunard announces new 2021 programme

Cunard’s three Queens to visit 123 destinations across 39 countries as surging demand sees Cunard itineraries span the globe. 17 Mediterranean destinations will be available to choose from in the new programme

Luxury cruise line Cunard is excited to release its June 2021 to January 2022 cruise schedule, which will see its three Queens visit 123 destinations across 39 countries.

With an extensive range of itineraries that span the globe, the 2021 schedule includes a variety of extended port stays, including 174 voyages with late evening departures. The schedule means guests can immerse themselves in the local cultures of a wide range of exciting international destinations, at their leisure. 

In addition to a number of evening departures, Cunard’s 2021 season includes many overnight stays in spectacular and renowned cities; including Boston, Funchal, Lisbon, Quebec, Reykjavik, Rotterdam, Shanghai, Singapore and St. Petersburg.

Simon Palethorpe, President, Cunard said: “Filled with inspiring destinations, we’re making it our priority to ensure our guests have as long as possible to explore the world’s most exquisite locations in their own time and at their own pace. After immersing themselves in the local culture, guests can look forward to enjoying our unique on board experience that offers the freedom of time and space with our exemplary White Star Service that is second to none.”

Queen Victoria will undertake an engaging European itinerary throughout 2021 including 20 Southampton roundtrip voyages. Highlights include a maiden visit to Aarhus, Denmark; a first for Cunard in its 180 year history; while extended stays in Lisbon, Reykjavik and St. Petersburg are sure to attract attention.

In 1840, Cunard became the first shipping line to offer regularly scheduled crossings. Today, Cunard alone maintain this timeless tradition, offering 23 crossings in 2021 on board the world’s only ocean liner, Queen Mary 2. 

In response to surging demand, Asia remains firmly on Cunard’s radar in 2021 with Queen Elizabeth based in the Asia-Pacific region throughout the year. Itineraries include circumnavigations of Japan, a variety of Australian and New Zealand voyages as well as a spectacular maiden call in Seogwipo City, South Korea.

Simon Palethorpe continues: “In addition to 31 wonderful round trip voyages from our home port of Southampton, we are excited that 2021 sees Cunard offer itineraries that span the globe. It is a testament to our long-standing commitment to excellence that from Southampton to Shanghai, Boston to Brisbane, Cunard has become synonymous with luxury in all corners of the world.”