Regent Seven Seas Cruises® to Debut New Serene Spa & Wellness™ Fleetwide

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A new experience in travel wellness, Regent guests will enhance their voyage with exclusive, destination-inspired spa treatments, rejuvenating fitness classes, nutritionally balanced cuisine and wellness tours as they journey around the world

Serene Spa & Wellness™, originally designed to perfect luxury on board Seven Seas Splendor™, will launch fleetwide ahead of Seven Seas Splendor’s maiden voyage

On October 1, 2019 Regent Seven Seas Cruises®, the world’s leading luxury ocean cruise line, announced they are introducing a new globally inspired spa brand that will debut across its five-ship fleet this winter. Serene Spa & Wellness™ will offer exclusive treatments integrating techniques and ingredients from destinations around the world, creating a tranquil haven of health, beauty and wellness that offers restorative treatments and services to soothe both the body and mind.

The groundbreaking menu of services reflects treatments originating from many of the 450 destinations to which the cruise line sails, and includes globally renowned ELEMIS facial therapies, body treatments, massages, manicures, pedicures, luxury Kérastase salon services, fitness classes, and personal training, plus a series of wellness tours and nutritionally mindful cuisine selections served in restaurants on board.

“Regent is deeply inspired by the peace and serenity that can be found in every region of our globe, and we are bringing the beautiful traditions and tried-and-true techniques of the world’s cultures into the exclusive experiences of Serene Spa & Wellness™ through spa treatments, cuisine and captivating shore excursions,” said Jason Montague, president and CEO of Regent Seven Seas Cruises. “We originally developed this innovative experience for Seven Seas Splendor™ in our pursuit to perfect luxury for our newest ship, and then decided to expand Serene Spa & Wellness™ for guests to embark on a global journey of relaxation on all Regent ships. Serene Spa & Wellness™ will set a new benchmark in luxury spas at sea.”

Experience the best of destination-inspired body and beauty treatments

Serene Spa & Wellness™ integrates globally sourced, natural ingredients that promote health and balance for the body, mind and spirit. In addition to traditional spa services, examples of globally inspired techniques and treatments offered exclusively at Serene Spa & Wellness™ on Regent Seven Seas Cruises include:

  • The Regent Massage. (Destination Inspiration: Sea Buckthorn from the Mediterranean coast)
    This bespoke full-body therapy features a synergy of rosemary, sea fennel and sea buckthorn from the Mediterranean coastlines worked into areas of tension to ease and soothe muscles while helping to detoxify. Warm eucalyptus-infused paraffin mitts and boots enhance this signature experience, deeply nourishing and hydrating hands and feet.
  • Around The World Massage. (Destination Inspirations: Basalt from China, Coconut Poultice from Caribbean, Bamboo from Asia)
    Fusing techniques from the corners of the world, this choreographed therapy is one of optimal wellness: the earthly scents of Indian cardamom, Egyptian coriander and eucalyptus soothe the mind; Swedish massage movements work freely throughout the body to relax; volcanic rocks release muscle tension and stagnant energy in the legs; bamboo stalks glide over muscles to deeply alleviate discomfort; warmed coconut poultices are delicately worked over the face, neck and shoulders; and argan oil from Morocco conditions the scalp.
  • Sea Lavender & Samphire Body Polish. (Destination Inspiration: Samphire from Northern Europe)
    Hydrate skin with a nourishing, exfoliation duo. Nutrient-rich extracts from sea lavender and samphire smooth parched, dry skin cells while a moisturizing milk of macadamia nut and sea salt moisturize to allow a thirsty skin to replenish. This lavish body experience includes half or full-body massage.
  • Deep Sea Heat Mask & Massage. (Destination Inspiration: Bladderwrack Seaweed from Baltic Coast)
    Recharge your body with a detoxifying treatment designed to alleviate deep-seated tension and muscular distress. Rich in minerals and trace elements, an aromatic, warm mask with potent algae from the Baltic Sea is applied on to the back to release tension and ease aches and pains while a back or full-body massage relaxes the body.
  • Calming Rose Facial. (Destination Inspiration: Hand-picked Organic English Roses from the United Kingdom)
    Comfort sensitive skin with a natural blend of delicate rose absolute to intensely hydrate the dermis. Luxuriously indulgent, precious rose extracts smooth fine lines, strengthening and protecting the skin’s barrier. A warm rose balm is massaged onto the hands and arms to induce relaxation. Skin is left feeling soothed and replenished with a petal softness.
  • Kérastase® Elixir Ultime 24-Carat Indulgent Ritual. (Destination Inspiration: Rose from Morocco)
    This indulgent hair ritual nourishes, protects and instantly restores hair. Relax with the aromatic scent of rose during a luxurious treatment in which camellia and marula oils and white tea extracts are massaged deep into the scalp. This highly concentrated experience provides a sublime transformation, leaving hair silky, weightless and beautiful.
  • Regent Manicure and Pedicure. (Destination Inspiration: Frangipani from the South Pacific)
    Hands and feet are soaked in a hydrating milk protein while a vitamin-rich oil strengthens nails and cuticles. Warmed frangipani oil is massaged to further replenish moisture. Includes filing, cuticles and polish.

Ask one of our Cruise Specialists for a full menu of treatments is available

 

Focusing on holistic wellness, both on ship and on shore
Serene Spa & Wellness™ services extend beyond the physical spa venue:

  • Fitness experts at Fitness by Serene Spa & Wellness™ lead popular exercise classes, such as Pilates, yoga and meditation and are available to offer advice and demonstrate the use of fitness equipment.
    Equipment includes spinning bikes, dumbbells, treadmills, Technogym® strength machines, workout mats and step benches. One-on-one training can be arranged with a fitness instructor.
  • Savor the best of world cuisine with Serene Spa & Wellness™ Selections in many restaurants on board. Drawn from a globally inspired approach to healthy living, these culinary dishes are as flavorful as they are nutritious. An extensive array of innovative options is available in restaurants across Regent’s fleet, featuring exquisite dishes influenced by a myriad of global fares including delectable plant-based cuisine.
  • Serene Spa & Wellness™ Tours offer curated shore excursions designed to enhance wellness through immersive experiences. Soak in a restorative, mineral-rich thermal spring in Rome or experience a taiji (tai chi) class on a beautiful and serene beach on Palma de Mallorca. Guests can refresh with a Mediterranean breeze as they calm their mind and strengthen their focus through a yoga class overlooking the seaside town of Taormina.
  • Experience the healing, detoxifying and tension-releasing power of the European-inspired Serene Spa & Wellness™ Hydrothermal Suite, exclusive to Seven Seas Splendor™ and Seven Seas Explorer®. Relax before or after spa treatments and enjoy Regent’s multisensory aromatherapy steam room, chill room, infrared sauna and experiential showers.

 

Serene Spa & Wellness™ opening schedule
Serene Spa & Wellness™ will launch on each Regent ship during these voyages:

Seven Seas Explorer® – Dec. 7, 2019 voyage
Seven Seas Mariner® – Jan. 6, 2020 voyage
Seven Seas Voyager® – Jan. 7, 2020 voyage
Seven Seas Navigator® – Jan. 23, 2020 voyage
Seven Seas Splendor™ – Feb. 6, 2020 voyage

Odyssey of the Seas

Introducing Royal Caribbean’s newest ship – Odyssey of the Seas

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It’s time to see just how far adventure can take you. Introducing the newest Royal Caribbean® gamechanger, Odyssey of the SeasSM. From bow to stern and St. Thomas to Santorini, it’s bold in every direction on the latest Quantum Ultra Class feat — debuting fall 2020 in Fort Lauderdale and sailing from Rome summer 2021.

 

HIGHLIGHTS YOU WILL FIND ONBOARD

ALL THE THRILLS
• RipCord® by iFLY® — Your clients can feel the freedom of freefall without even leaving the deck.

• Sky PadSM — Whether bouncing around a sugarcoated world, or a planet lightyears in the future, it’s gravity-defying fun in this bungee trampoline experience.

• FlowRider® — The surf’s always up as 30,000 gallons of rushing awesome heads your clients’ way.

 

ALL DECKED OUT
• Resort style pools — Island vibes are set to max with two uncovered pools, plenty of shady casitas, and hammocks primed for sweet ocean breezes.

• North Star® — It’s time to raise the bar on adventure — with 360-degree views of the world from 300 feet above sea level in our signature observation capsule.

• Solarium — Peaceful swimming pools, whirlpools with ocean views and ambience for days — and nights.

 

ALL FOR THE FAMILY
• SeaPlex® — The largest indoor activity space at sea serves up family friendly thrills like bumper cars, a trapeze school, glow-in-the-dark laser tag and PlaymakersSM Sports Bar & Arcade overlooking all the action.

• Adventure Ocean® — It’s time to play outside the lines with wide open play places and dedicated spaces for all types of activities for kids.

• Teen spaces — Teenagers don’t have to choose between game time and hanging out. Spaces like Social133 put them in the action, indoors and out.

• Splashaway BaySM — Pint-sized cruisers will find gallons of adventure onboard — at the fun-soaked Splashaway BaySM aqua park with slides, water cannons and more.

 

ALL OUT DINING AND ENTERTAINMENT
• Giovanni’sSM Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar — Pizza, pasta, wine — now there’s even more to love at this reimagined trattoria.

• Teppanyaki — Your clients have front row seats for authentic Far East flavors cooked in Japan’s traditional style right at their table.

• Two70® — By night, the lights go down in this open area panoramic living room, where windows become screens, and aerialists, robots and more take your clients on a journey like no other.

• Music Hall — This is the premier place for live music lovers where the industry’s best cover bands rock like the real thing.

 

CONNECT WITH US TODAY TO BOOK YOUR CRUISE ON ODYSSEY OF THE SEAS!

FALL 2020 — Sailing from Fort Lauderdale, Florida
6 to 8 Night Eastern/Western/Southern Caribbean

SUMMER 2021 — Sailing from Rome, Italy
7 to 12 Night Mediterranean, Greek Isles and Holy Land itineraries

B.B. Kings onboard Holland America

Holland America Offers Music For Your Soul

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With so many irresistible options to choose from, evenings on board a Holland America ship can and should be all about live music. Memorable performances from world-class musicians fill your journey with an unforgettable rhythm all its own. Spend your time in one place or enjoy several venues over the course of the night. We asked our advisors to share some of their favourite ways to experience music onboard Holland America.

B.B. King’s Blues Club: Bringing you the best of Memphis music, from funky and fast to soulful and smooth, you’ll enjoy dancing while listening to an eight-piece band with two vocalists, rhythm and horn sections.  And don’t forget to try one of their specialty cocktails like the Lucille and Rock Me Baby.

Postmodern Jukebox on Deck: One of the world’s hottest musical groups is bringing its exciting signature show to sea, two ways. At The Rendezvous you’ll experience a day in the life of Postmodern Jukebox at a ‘20s jazz club. Or during a state-of-the-art shipboard concert – The Golden Age – you’ll hear Postmodern Jukebox’s most iconic songs. And of course each performance features unbelievable lavish costumes and arrangements.

Billboard Onboard: Sing along with two pianists while they play the music you love from fifty years of chart-topping hits. And between sets show off your trivia skills, answering questions on the digital screens.

Rolling Stone Rock Room: The newest addition to Music Walk on the Koningsdam and Nieuw Statendam you’ll feel like your stepping into the pages of Rolling Stone magazine.  The Rolling Stone Rock Room features a five-piece live band playing iconic hits by your favorite bands covering four decades of rock and roll.

These amazing venues, along with exciting performances at The Mainstage, Lincoln Center Stage and World Stage ensure you experience the Best in Live Music and entertainment.

Autism Friendly Cruising with Celebrity Cruises

Autism Friendly Cruising with Celebrity Cruises

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We understand that cruising as a family takes extra planning. And we can only imagine the extra steps that go into planning a cruise when travelling with special needs. One of our special partners, Celebrity Cruises, offer Autism Friendly programs for all ages to help make your family cruise the best it can be.

Celebrity Cruises® offers a welcoming autism-friendly environment onboard its cruise ships. This includes sensory-friendly films and toys, dietary menu options, and overall autism-friendly training for Camp at Sea staff. In addition, Youth Staff have received autism awareness training which covers the following topics: characteristics of autism and developmental disabilities, and communication tactics, such as person-first language and terms, and skills to initiate a conversation with a parent about his or her child’s needs. Your search for special needs cruise ships ends here.

Autism-Friendly Ships

Celebrity Cruises® offers autism-friendly interactive initiatives for families, including sensory-friendly films and toys, dietary menu options, and overall autism-friendly training for Camp at Sea staff and more. Additionally, we offer a wide range of autism friendly products and services, which include:

> Priority check-in, boarding and departure
> Camp at Sea toilet-trained policy exception
> Special dietary accommodations including gluten-free and dairy-free
> Pagers/phones for parents of children while signed into the care of Camp at Sea programs (subject to availability).
> Camp at Sea flexible grouping by ability for children 3 to 12 years old

Autism-Friendly Films

Autism friendly films are presented in a low lighting, low volume environment. Guests are encouraged to freely talk and walk around during the film. These films will be offered on all autism group cruises, and cruises with at least five children with autism onboard. Dates and times will be highlighted in Celebrity Today.

Autism-Friendly Toy Lending Program

“In our efforts to deliver top-rated products with both entertainment and educational value, Celebrity Cruises® partnered with Fat Brain Toys—one of the most highly regarded toy companies among occupational, physical and play therapists—to offer an exclusive Autism Friendly Toy Lending Catalog. We also offer: non-toxic crayons, markers, water colors, building blocks, dominoes and picture books. Upon request, we will provide a tote bag with the Fat Brain Toys of your selection.

Autism-Friendly Activities

We offer activities for children of all abilities. Families are encouraged to consult with Camp at Sea staff regarding any special needs that their children may have in order to identify which activities are appropriate for their child and any possible modifications.

Cruising Social Story

“A Social Story is a written or visual guide describing various social interactions, situations, behaviors, skills or concepts. These Social Stories help individuals with autism to better cope with social situations. Celebrity Cruises® offers a Social Story Booklet about cruising to help families with autism prepare for their cruise vacation.

What Do You Offer For Teens With Autism?
• Expedited check-in, boarding and departure
• Special dietary accommodations including gluten-free
• Autism Friendly Toy Lending Program
• Autism Friendly Films
• Social Story Booklet
• Our Teen Program with teens-only hangouts and activities. Please note while some activities are hosted, supervision or one-on-one attention is not provided

What Do You Offer For Adults With Autism?
• Expected check-in, boarding and departure
• Special dietary accommodations including gluten-free
• Autism Friendly Toy Lending Program
• Autism Friendly Films
• Social Story Booklet
• Our Cruise Activities Program.
Please note while some activities are hosted, supervision or one-on-one attention is not provided (Adults are not permitted in Teen or Camp at Sea spaces)

Danube Christmas Markets Cruise

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My niece and I were so excited to take our first ever cruise and to go on a river cruise was a great way to experience Europe in a way we never thought we would.  Especially during the holiday season and visiting the Christmas Markets.

We flew from Toronto to Budapest (with KLM) with a connection in Amsterdam.  On the way home we flew from Nuremberg to Toronto (with KLM) also with a connection in Amsterdam.  Surprisingly there were quite a few storms within Europe so we were glad we decided to fly a day earlier since you never know what could happen!

HOTEL

We spent one night at the Hilton Budapest City, which is centrally located, close to the train station, restaurants and shops as well as above West End City Centre Shopping Centre.

The rooms are large and clean.  All rooms, the lounge and restaurants have complimentary WiFi.  Modern fitness facility available.  Upon check in we purchased a package that included buffet breakfast.  Buffet had a wide selection of items i.e. cereal, croissants, Danishes, sausages, cold cuts and fruits.  Coffee, tea and juices readily available.

Front desk and hotel staff were friendly and efficient and they all spoke English.

The cab ride from the airport to the hotel took about 35 mins and cost approximately EUR40.  The cab ride from the hotel to the dock was approximately 15 mins drive cost EUR25.

CRUISE 
Finally the day arrived and we travel by cab to the dock to board AMA Serena which will be our home for the next 8 days!

The AMA Serena is a beautiful vessel and is a glow with decorations to celebrate the Christmas season.  From the minute we stepped on board we were greeted by the extremely friendly staff and crew.  We were given a glass of champagne and warm towels and were seated comfortably waiting to be checked in.  Everything went very smoothly.  There is no line up or waiting at the registration desk.  I strongly believe all check in procedures should be like this!

As a part of the check in procedure we each had a photo taken which is attached on their reservation/registration system to our room key fob.  Security and safety is key so whenever you are leaving the ship for any reason (i.e. Shore excursions) you must have your key fob scanned.  This helps the crew to know who is on board the ship at any given time (no one gets left behind! J).

There are 4 decks – the Sun deck with the heated pool, walking track, navigation bridge, bicycles, sun deck and lower sun deck, the Violin deck which has the reception, main lounge and piano bar and gift shop, 32 staterooms which includes 3 suites, the massage and hair salon, the Chef’s Table Restaurant, Fitness room, the Cello Deck with 33 staterooms, elevator down to the main dining room and the Piano Deck (our deck for our voyage) with 16 suites.

Each Stateroom had twin beds (in most cases) an en-suite bathroom, flat screen TV and keyboard (featuring various news and movie channels as well as a ship safety channel), 2 wardrobes, safe, telephone, coffee table and 2 chairs, 2 robes, hairdryer, a 110V socket as well a few more 220V sockets, and a bar fridge which is stocked with water (replenished daily).  Although the beds were small they were very comfortable. Staterooms on the Violin and Cello decks have French balconies.

Staterooms on the Piano deck (our deck for the trip) do not have French balcony but have porthole windows.

All decks are easily accessible. There is an elevator which runs from the Violin to Cello deck as well as to the Main dining room.

In the lounge you will find a bar with a piano and very comfortable couches, chairs and coffee tables throughout.  Most of us loved sitting in the lounge to mingle, read a book, while having a few drinks and looking out at the beautiful scenery.  All entertainment on board takes place in the lounge.  In the lounge daily there is a light lunch at 12 noon should you not want to eat in the dining room, tea time with tea, coffee and cakes between 4 and 5pm and at 10:30pm a light snack.

Off of the lounge there is a small library with daily news from the US and Canada depending on the guests nationality.  There were 4 Canadians (including us) and of course 2 Jamaicans (my niece and I) but no Jamaican news?!?!? J

There is also a 24 hour hot beverage area with seating off of the lounge and across from the gift shop.  Here you are able to sit and have coffee, an assortment of teas, hot chocolate, lattes, cappuccinos etc. or make a hot drink and take it to the lounge.

Whether you are seated in the lounge, library or the hot beverage area, you are able to see the various cities while cruising.

The entertainment on board consisted mostly of our pianist – Peter who was also a very good singer, or depending on the city we are visiting we had various entertainers i.e. an acapella group from Regensburg.

All meals and dessert on board were exquisite.  Breakfast and lunch were usually buffet style however you were able to order off of a menu.

The crew were very helpful and accommodating and by the 2nd day they knew each guests likes and dislikes.    They had very long hours but you would never know that they were tired as they were always full of energy and with a genuine smile.

I do feel that Riverboat cruising is quite suitable for a small group but during our cruise there was a group of American Real Estate Agents and it did tend to get quite loud in the lounge at night.

As this was my first cruise and being on a small ship made me think that this is the only way to cruise.  There is a smaller number of guests and so friendships among the guests and crew are formed very quickly.

ON SHORE

Budapest, Hungary

Our first evening was an Illuminating cruise on the Danube of Budapest’s Riverfront.  Budapest at night is quite beautiful.  We cruised along the banks and saw many illuminated buildings such as the Chain bridge, Buda Castle, Hungarian Parliament Building and Fisherman’s Bastion to name a few.  We docked for the night in Budapest.  On the second day we were taken by motor coach on a city tour of Buda as well as Pest.  We visited Heroes Square, Mathias Church, Fisherman’s Bastion, the opera house and various highlights of Buda City.  We also visited the Pest side where we saw St. Stephen’s Cathedral with its spectacular views of Pest and Buda.  Our tour ended with our first Christmas Market visit.   That night we set sail for Austria.  Our first city to visit….Vienna.

Vienna, Austria

We sailed all night and woke up in Vienna, Austria.  The day began with a motor coach tour to Vienna where we drove by the opera House, the former Imperial house of the Hapsburg Emperors, Parliament, Town Hall and Vienna University.  Our tour ended in Vienna’s historic city centre where we were given a walking tour of the city, visiting St. Stephen’s Cathedral, and other historic city landmarks.   At the end of our city tour we visited the Christmas Markets of Schönbrunn and Karlsplatz Schwedenplatz, Maria-Theresian-Platz and Rathausplatz.  After a long day we had a delightful dinner on board and sailed on to Melk.

Melk, Austria

On this day we arrive in Melk and were taken again by motor coach to Melk Benedictine Abbey were we are given a walking tour.

The abbey sits perched on a rocky hill above the quaint little village of Melk. The abbey is still to this day a functioning abbey with approximately 7 monks and schools approximately 900 co-ed students.  We were not able to take photos of the interior.  The Abbey is quite spectacular with gold frescoed ceilings and columns as well as one of the largest libraries in the world.  The view from the Abbey is quite spectacular as you are overlooking the River Danube and the village of Melk.

Passau & Salzburg, Austria

We sail overnight to Passau where we are taken on a 2 hour motor coach ride to Salzburg, the home of The Sound of Music, my favourite movie J! And also of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

Enroute our tour guide gave us a little history of Salzburg and of course the movie.  For example at the end of the movie when the Von Trap family escapes the Germans over the mountain to Switzerland?  Well on the other side of that mountain…… is Germany! J

We arrived in Salzburg where we went on a walking tour through the historic town to the Christmas Market.  On the tour we pass Mozart’s birthplace, Mirabell Gardens (you know the place where Do Rei Me was filmed! J) and get a glimpse of Hohensalburg Fortress which overlooks the town.

Regensburg & Thurn and Taxis Christmas Market, Germany

We sailed overnight and arrive in Regensburg, our first Bavarian city.  Regensburg is well known for its High Gothic Cathedral and very quaint and charming cobblestone street, where we go on another walking tour of the city.  Close to the dock and next to the Stone Bridge is the oldest restaurant in Germany, Wurstkuchl (Sausage Kitchen), famous for its delicious Bavarian sausages.  Unfortunately the line-up was really long so we did not get a chance to partake is this delicious feast.

After lunch on board the ship, we are taken by motor coach (approximately 5 – 10 min drive) to the Thurn and Taxis Christmas Market.  This market is located on the grounds of the Palace Emmeram where Emperor Franz I family still resides.  The matriarch (Princess Gloria) has preserved the castle and all its surroundings and still runs the family business.  She is a collector of modern art and thus has assembled a large array of local artists and craftsmen for this very unique Christmas Market.

This was our second to last evening on board AMA Serena and so the staff and crew serenade us to say goodbye at the Captain’s Farewell Cocktail.  We were also visited by Santa Claus who has presents for all on board.

Roth & Nuremburg, Germany

The sailing from Regensburg to Nuremburg (with a technical stop in Roth) is mostly done during the morning.  The cruise enters the Main-Danube Canal (the European Panama Canal).  When we arrived in Nuremburg we were taken by motor coach on a city tour.   The city is famous for the Nuremburg Trials which was of a series of military tribunals held by the Allied forces under international and also laws of war after World War II.  Nuremburg was also known for its location of the Annual Nazi Rally’s. This was by far the coldest day on our trip and actually seeing the site and where Hitler stood making his speeches had us all thinking back to what it could have been like during his reign of terror.

At the end of our tour we are taken to the largest Christmas Market in the world which is in Nuremburg.  There is so much to see and so many people!

On this evening we are able to get a reservation to have dinner at the Chef’s Table Restaurant.  The meal consists of a delicious tasting menu accompanied by various wines.  Each course is described by the maître d’, and served by 2 waiters with a specific wine pairing.  Not only was the presentation beautiful but the meal and wine delicious.

 

 

Contributed by Kathy Gooden
Vision Travel, a Direct Travel Company

Virtuoso Offer

Virtuoso Offer with Avalon Waterways

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The “Just Right” Way to River Cruise
What defines luxury? Is it the enjoyment of the good things in life, or is it simply having things just the way you prefer them? Avalon Waterways navigates with both elegance and ease to deliver a “just right” experience – one that transports you at just the right pace, with just the right amenities, and just the right views. Along the legendary waterways of Europe, they balance enriching activities, included excursions, mouthwatering cuisine, and unmatched service to offer the perfect degree of relaxed indulgence. This is called the Avalon difference.

We’re fortunate to have a world of resources at our fingertips, thanks in large part to our partnership with Virtuoso®, an organization of the top travel agencies, travel providers, and destinations worldwide.

Through Virtuoso, we are able to offer you, our valued client, the kind of exclusive amenities, upgrades, access, and experiences that elevate your cruise including the following offer on select sailings:

~ Pre-paid Gratuities – a value of up to US $504 per stateroom depending on length of cruise

 

Included for Every Avalon Guest

  • Spacious outside deluxe accommodations with enhanced soundproofing and Avalon’s exclusive Comfort Collection BedsSM for a great night’s sleep. (See deck plans for additional stateroom amenities.)
  • Large private bathroom featuring full shower with glass door, hairdryer & premium L’Occitane® bath products
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner on board daily indicated by breakfast (B), lunch (L), and dinner (D) on the itinerary pages
  • Complimentary sparkling wine with breakfast; wine, beer, or soft drinks with lunch and dinner are included daily on board your vessel
  • A professional Cruise Director who delivers educational commentary as you travel through interesting landscapes, and who assists with requests and additional excursions
  • An Avalon Adventure HostSM available as your guide for fitness activities and active excursions
  • Friendly, English-speaking staff who deliver consummate personal service throughout your journey
  • Avalon Choice® – Enjoy included sightseeing with Certified Local Guides, Guided Optional Excursions and Tours, and ample free time to explore on your own. Explore CLASSIC sights, embark on ACTIVE excursions, and make a new DISCOVERY through hands-on cultural and artistic experiences shared by local residents and experts
Tomato-Feta-Basil Macarons

Recipe: Tomato-Feta-Basil Macarons

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Surprise your friends with this savory macaron, a twist on the traditionally sweet cookie with its mild crust and tangy center of feta, fresh tomatoes and basil. When you assemble them, be sure to spread the filling gently or even use a piping bag to prevent damaging the delicate meringue cookies. We think this is a great summer time appetizer shared by our friends at Viking Cruises!

Ingredients

COOKIE:
¾ C (64 g) almond meal
¾ C (98 g) confectioners’ sugar
2 lg egg whites
¾ C (177 ml) water
¾ C (144 g) sugar

 

FILLING:
2 T (30 g) feta cheese
2 T (30 g) cream cheese
2 T (5 g) basil, finely chopped
Few drops lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
2 med ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and finely diced
Individual basil leaves (one per macaron)

Directions
Preheat oven to 340°F (170°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place a damp kitchen towel on counter. Place almond meal and confectioners’ sugar in medium bowl; stir to combine. Place 1 of the egg whites in another medium bowl and beat with an electric mixer until firm shiny peaks form. Spoon into almond mixture, folding in gently to combine. Place remaining egg white in a medium bowl and beat until soft peaks form. Set aside.

Place water and granulated sugar in a small saucepan. Place over medium low heat, stirring frequently until sugar has dissolved. Continue to boil until mixture reaches a temperature of 245°F (120°C) on a candy thermometer. Very gradually pour sugar syrup into egg white, constantly beating with an electric mixer until shiny peaks form. Add almond mixture and gently fold in.

Spoon mixture into a large pastry bag fitted with a large round tip and form 24 small disks about 2 inches across, leaving an inch of space in between. Let stand at room temperature 20 minutes. Bake for 12 minutes. Remove from oven and, leaving macarons on parchment paper, move paper to damp kitchen towel. Let cool to room temperature.

To make filling, place feta, cream cheese, basil, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a small bowl, mashing with a fork to combine. Stir in tomatoes. To assemble, spread mixture thinly between 2 macarons.

Prep time: 38 minutes.Cook time: 12 minutes.Makes 12 servings.

Recipe: Traditional English Summer Pudding

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A seasonal dessert made with sliced bread and summer fruit, this English classic dates back to Victorian times. Summer pudding highlights the fresh flavors of plump, juicy berries, while crisp, delicate phyllo, crunchy pistachios and heavenly whipped cream complete this British favorite. Shared by our partners at Viking Cruises.

Ingredients

SUMMER PUDDING:
¼ loaf brioche, crust removed
⅓ C (75 ml) water
½ tsp (1½ g) pectin
2½ T (30 g) sugar
½ C (60 g) strawberries, diced
½ C (60 g) raspberries
½ C (60 g) blueberries
½ C (60 g) blackberries
½ C (80 g) figs, diced
1 sheet gelatin

PHYLLO CRISP:
¼ sheet phyllo dough
1 T (15 g) unsalted butter, melted

BERRY COMPOTE:
1 T (20 g) strawberry jam
2 strawberries, diced
2 T (25 g) blueberries

GARNISH:
½ C (50 g) whipped cream
1 fig, cut in 5 wedges
2 T (30 ml) raspberry sauce
2 T (15 g) dried cranberries
1 T (10 g) pistachios, coarsely chopped
2 T (15 g) confectioners’ sugar
5 sprigs fresh mint


Directions

Summer Pudding: Slice brioche and cut with a 3-inch circle cutter; place inside 3-inch ramekins. Combine water, pectin and sugar, add strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries and figs; heat gently just until juice releases from berries. Remove from heat, strain over bowl. Dissolve gelatin in liquid, combine berry and gelatin mixture, spoon into ramekins and chill 1 hour. Reserve leftover berry mixture for compote.

Phyllo Crisp: Preheat oven to 350°F (170°C). Brush phyllo with butter, bake 12-15 minutes. Break into pieces.

Berry Compote: Combine reserved berry mixture, strawberry jam, strawberries and blueberries.

Serving Suggestion
Remove pudding from ramekins, place on plates. Add whipped cream rosettes, fig wedges, raspberry sauce, cranberries, pistachios and compote. Dust with confectioners’ sugar; garnish with mint.

Prep time: 15 minutes.Chill time: 1 hour.Cook time: 18 minutes.Makes 5 servings.

Shore Excursion Highlight: Glacier Walk & Waterfalls

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This Mindful Living Tour may be experienced on Seabourn’s Route of the Vikings voyages, British Isles & Iceland, Atlantic Isles Quest, A Viking Summer, Icealandic Summer, Northern Summer Skies, Viking Island Quest, Icelandic & Scottish Adventure, Commonwealth & Viking Route Quest, Atlantic & Maritimes Quest

GLACIER WALK & WATERFALLS: A MINDFUL LIVING TOUR

Live the dream today with this opportunity to walk on an Icelandic glacier.

Leaving the city, relax and enjoy a panoramic drive southeast, passing over Hellisheiði — a mountain that offers a magnificent view of the wide plains formed by glacial rivers. You’re headed towards the town of Hveragerði surrounded by fertile farmland. The south coast of Iceland has some of the fantastic greenhouses built to harness geothermal energy for the food and horticulture industry. The quality and taste of these naturally grown vegetables is fabulous. Continue driving east, passing small villages and farmland. The majestic mountains towering above the coastal plain are your companions. Weather permitting, you might catch a glimpse of snow-shrouded Hekla — the country’s most active volcano. In the distance lies ice-capped Eyjafjallajökull volcano, whose 2010 eruption brought Europe’s aviation industry to a standstill. Beautiful Seljalandsfoss Waterfall is a fun surprise — you can walk behind the falls for a view of the falls’ backside! At Myìrdalsjökull Glacier, meet your expert glacier guides and set out on a hike to the frozen glacial tongue named Sólheimajökull — a rugged, raw and ever-changing river of frozen water. Step onto the glacier and observe the spectacular surroundings as you walk to the ice wall. Here, you will climb the ice, equipped with ice axes, crampons and safety lines that ensure that even if lose your grip, you will not fall. Once the glacier hike is over, head back to Reykjavík, stopping for a late lunch near Skógafoss Waterfall.

Please note: It is essential that you wear warm, layered clothing in order to fully enjoy and participate in this excursion. Outer layer jackets and pants should be waterproof and windproof (jeans are not permitted). Bring gloves, a warm hat and a scarf. Excellent, sturdy hiking shoes are required to fit the crampons. This outdoor activity comes with inherent risks. Waiver must be signed and medical conditions disclosed. The walking takes place on Sólheimajökull Glacier which is a branch of the Myìrdalsjökull Glacier. Lunch is light and includes Icelandic meat soup or soup of the day, bread and dessert with tea or coffee. This is a long walking/hiking tour, suitable only for physically fit participants. The glacier walk does not require any special skills but you must follow the guide’s instruction at all times and keep to the walking paths. Minimum age is 10 years.

As an extension of the Spa & Wellness with Dr. Andrew Weil, this Mindful Living tour is designed to deliver the experience that contributes to mind and body wellness. You are invited to visit the on-board spa to speak to the Mindful Living coach to learn more about Dr. Weil and our holistic wellness program.

Eat Around the World Aboard Norwegian!

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Get ready for a culinary exploration at Food Republic on Norwegian Cruise Line

Savor a fusion of foods and cultures from around the globe without ever leaving the ship. Travel to Peru to scoop up some ceviche. Jet away to Japan and try a new kind of sushi roll. Or have a hearty helping of noodles from China. Whichever delicious food guests choose, they will enjoy exotic dishes made with the freshest ingredients – and made fresh daily. Food Republic is not a food court, but rather a chef-inspired marketplace where guests order by using a tablet at their table or at the counter.

Travel somewhere new with every delicious bite.  Food Republic can be chosen as one of the specialty dining restaurants as part of the FREE AT SEA promotion or dine a la carte for a per person charge.

Food Republic is currently available on the following Norwegian Cruise Line ships

Norwegian Bliss

Norwegian Joy

Norwegian Escape

Norwegian Encore