April 26, 2014
Voyager of the Seas

Voyager of the Seas

The Australian summer cruise season officially ended on 18 April with Royal Caribbean Line’s Rhapsody of the Seas sailing from Sydney.

Proving that cruising is still one of the most popular holiday choices with Australians, RCL Cruises Ltd’s two brands, Celebrity Cruises and Royal Caribbean International, hosted a record 190,000 guests, 12% up on last cruise season.

RCI's Adam Armstrong congratulates "WOW'' winner

RCI’s Adam Armstrong congratulates “WOW” winner

During the season, Royal Caribbean held the world’s first Instagram Film Festival which culminated in a grand finale event on board Voyager of the Seas. The creator of the winning “wow” moment won a cruise on the brand new Quantum of the Seas.

Some of the other milestones celebrated included Celebrity Solstice’s fifth birthday plus her maiden calls to Napier in New Zealand and Newcastle, where she was welcomed with an official gun salute at Fort Scratchley.

Another exciting event in New Zealand was Voyager of the Seas meeting up with Celebrity Solstice in Wellington and Tauranga, temporarily increasing local populations by over 8,000 people.

Voyager of the Seas also made her maiden calls in Brisbane and Darwin.

The upcoming 2014/15 summer cruise season looks set to be even bigger. Highlights will be Celebrity Century arriving in October 2014 for her three month season which will feature 11 sailings, before she leaves the Celebrity Cruises fleet in April 2015. Celebrity Solstice will depart Honolulu on 5 October 2014 for a 17 night cruise to Sydney via French Polynesia and Voyager of the Seas will arrive in Sydney on 8 December 2014, fresh from a $75 million refurbishment.

Sandra Tiltman    Photos: John Pond

Lawn Club on Celebrity Solstice

Lawn Club on Celebrity Solstice



April 26, 2014


Bayswater Road, Kings Cross is now home to New Hampton, a sophisticated new bar located on the ground floor of the building that once housed the famous Hampton Court Hotel, one of Sydney’s grand hotels of yesteryear.

New Hampton, with its rustic appearance and air of sophistication, opened its doors in March, bringing a new vibe to the area, which continues to transform. Having two separate bar areas, a nightclub, pokies room plus separate smoking area, there’s plenty of space to move around. Solid timber bars, exposed wooden beams and handcrafted tiles set into the concrete flooring all create an intimate and warm atmosphere.

IMG_5293The fine dining restaurant, HARVEST @ New Hampton, has a range of modern Australian dishes with a twist of French flair. The menu includes a Chargrilled Beef Sirloin and Fillet on the bone, a dish unique to the venue. For those wanting a taste of everything Harvest has to offer, there is also a degustation menu that combines all of the chef’s signature dishes.

Head Chef, Ben Palmer, has designed the menu around familiar themes and plenty of flavour. Ben said “I’ve created a menu for a relaxed dining experience. It is well refined and not overly complex and uses only the freshest seasonal Australia produce on offer”.

New Hampton serves over twenty wines by the glass, featuring wines from Australia, France, Italy, New Zealand and the United States. The cocktail menu is a mixture of classic cocktails and some new creations, including the Hampton Ice Tea, Chocolate Sazerac and Belvedere Caramel Martini.

“A combination of high energy with our signature relaxed vibe is what makes us truly unique,” said New Hampton owner, Kieran Coleman.=

Sandra Tiltman