Some intriguing new cruise ships are on the way, including Norwegian Breakaway, which will breakout with a major party in New York in May.
In England in June, Royal Princess is due to debut with a long-awaited new design from Princess Cruises. After a summer in the Med, the ship will cross the pond, arriving in Fort Lauderdale in late October.
For a virtual tour of Carnival Sunshine.
Serious ship makeovers are all the rage
Celebrity Cruises has been “izing” its older ships. Multi-restaurant choices -- originally the idea of Norwegian Cruise Line -- and a glamorous contemporary style were a big hit on Celebrity Solstice in 2008. Even though four more Solstice-class ships were set to roll out of Germany’s Meyer Werft shipyard through 2012, Celebrity decided to “Solsticize,” as much as possible, its older Millennium Class ships. What’s Solsticizing? New restaurants, lounges and spa accoutrements were added to the line’s Constellation, Infinity, Summit, Millennium, and, by May of this year, Constellation.
Royal Caribbean also has been working backwards, remodeling and adding to a slew of its older ships some of the restaurants and special attractions that have been highly popular on its two newest ships, Oasis and Allure of the Seas.
Some of the best of 2012
In no particular order, here are some special cruises from 2012. Click on the links for my reports and reviews.
Carnival Breeze. This ship has the latest Carnival bells and whistles, with a Caribbean atmosphere, from outdoor bars to beachy hangouts.
Disney Fantasy. Disney's newest Fantasy, fourth ship in the fleet, provides some new sea vacation twists. Imagine your drawing dancing on a wall. Experience a child's makeover fit for a princess
Oasis of the Seas. On dozens of other cruises, you might just show up and meander your way through the week. Not on Oasis or on twin sister Allure of the Seas, world’s largest passenger ships. You will want to make a plan to manage your time and money.
Wind Surf. Powered by a new owner and $18 million of renovation, Windstar Cruise’s three ships are sailing again with vim, vigor, a contemporary interior, and a batch of new sails that total the size of seven football fields. Cruising on Windstar to Dominica and Les Saintes.
David Molyneaux writes regularly about cruising news, tips and trends. His cruise trends column appears monthly in U.S. newspapers and on other Internet sites. He is editor of TheTravelMavens.com