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.
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