Hapag-Lloyd Cruises Previews Columbus 2 and Europa 2

 https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-_6xEhjc_YzQ/TWtiihcqPGI/AAAAAAAANHc/5WFuO5EhAtQ/hapag-lloyd-logo.jpgApril 2012: Columbus 2 to set her own standards in the Premium sector

The Columbus 2, with a maximum capacity of 698 passengers, is a small ship in the Premium segment, and is due to be sailing for Hapag-Lloyd Cruises from April 2012 onwards. She will offer freedom of movement and diverse facilities on a total of 11 decks, with a generous amount of space per passenger.  With a very high proportion of balcony cabins with a standard size of 20 sqm (215 sq ft), the Premium ship provides a very high standard of comfort for this market sector.

With low starting prices the Columbus will be the ideal ship for cruise newcomers. The so-called “Complete Package,” an optional extra, will enable planning as far as extra costs are concerned, including as it does all beverages and a shore excursion package. The family travel concept will incorporate selected voyages during the holiday periods complete with a children’s program, free for the under-15s (if accommodated in a cabin with two adults). New Kids’ and Teens’ Clubs will be fitted on Deck 9 especially during a shipyard overhaul before delivery in April.

The Columbus 2’s four restaurants will offer a diversity of culinary highlights in a casual to elegant-casual atmosphere. Besides the fine dining restaurant Albert Ballin and the Italian speciality restaurant Toscana there will be the Polo Grill, or the Lido Restaurant, in the open air. These are supplemented by three bars: the Ballin Bar, Martinis and the Pool Bar.

Various stages and lounges are available for the entertainment program, in particular the Show Stage on the Pool Deck with irresistible open-air summer events. An impressive feature of the Observation Lounge, located two decks above the bridge, is its all-round panoramic glazing. The Ocean Spa and the large Fitness Section assure full wellness and fitness amenities. A highlight is  the Cabanas on the highest deck 11 – there passengers can sunbathe in a very private atmosphere.

May 2013: Europa 2 to set new standards in the Luxury cruise sector

Construction of the Europa 2 is due to commence at St Nazaire on 1st September.  The keel laying ceremony will then take place on 7th February 2012 and the ship will leave dry dock five months later for interior fit. The naming ceremony is planned for the spring of 2013.

The newly-built Europa 2 will allow the company to expand its leading role in the luxury segment. All routes will have one thing in common: they are oriented to the requirements of professionals, employees as well as families. In the spring and summer, Europa 2 will offer seven-night, combinable routes to the Western Mediterranean, optionally from Barcelona to Monte Carlo, from Monte Carlo to Malta and from Malta to Venice. In the autumn, cruises will be to the Eastern Mediterranean. The Europa 2 will then spend the winter in the Arabian Sea and in Southeast Asia.

The new ship’s gastronomy and entertainment will cater to the interests of a life-style oriented target group. A spacious Wellness Section with health-related facilities, for example Body Care and Anti-Aging, are designed to keep up with the trend towards active holidays and well-being. Besides family suites, three children’s sections are planned. Nannies will offer day care and a dedicated program for children from 2 years upwards – a new feature in the family concept of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises. Entertainment will remain true to the principle of diversity and exclusivity, with production shows, music, theatre, solo artists and open air events.

Seven restaurants will offer culinary delights at no extra charge: Asia, Italy, a Brasserie Grill, a Wine Bistro, Lido, Sushi Bar, Special Dining and Fine Dining are the basic concepts, augmented by gourmet events and four bars.

For further details or advance bookings call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail us at cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk

Photos courtesy of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises, Hamburg

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ Hanseatic Sails The South Pacific in March 2012


MS Hanseatic is the only expedition cruise ship in the world to be awarded five stars by the renowned Berlitz Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships 2011.

Accompanied by experts from various fields of knowledge, a small group of no more than 184 guests will thrill at experiencing the natural spectacles and cultural treasures of the South Pacific islands.

With her shallow draught and manoeuvrability, the Hanseatic can venture where other ships can’t go and the ship’s own fleet of Zodiacs allows for truly up close adventurous excursions.

https://i0.wp.com/nlhost.de/pep/hlkf/HAN_1205G.jpgItinerary:  Papeete (Tahiti), to Lautoka (Fiji), via Huahine (Society Islands), the Cook Islands (Rarotonga, Aitutaki Atoll and Palmerston Atoll), Samoa (Apia and Fagamalo), Tonga (Neiafu, Mala, Ha’apai and Nuku’alofa) and Fiji again (Levuka and Leleuvia), 25th March – 9th April 2012, 14 nights, cruise HAN1205.

– Huahine – magnificent mountain landscapes and picture-perfect beach.
– Cook Islands: The South Seas,  Swimming and snorkelling in the Blue Lagoon (optional arrangements not included in the cruise price).
– Tonga, the empire of King George Tupou V.

Prices start from £ 4,490 per person (guarantee suite of category 0, double occupancy, cruise only)

To book this cruise please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail us at cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk

Image courtesy of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises.

Ultra-Luxury Cruising from Hapag-Lloyd Cruises

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises' Europa 2, due for delivery in spring 2013

https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-_6xEhjc_YzQ/TWtiihcqPGI/AAAAAAAANHc/5WFuO5EhAtQ/hapag-lloyd-logo.jpgAt Cruise Shipping Miami 2011, Sebastian Ahrens, managing director of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises, made a significant contribution to the discussions on ultra-luxury cruising today with these comments.

In the years beyond 2010 Mr Ahrens describes the cruise market as having become a mass market phenomenon, but with the onset of the affluent baby boom ultra-luxury forms of travel are emerging that are becoming significant volume markets in their own right. Tied to this is the advent of an age of “non-ostentation” compared to earlier years, when luxury cruising had often been a means of showing off. Younger people entering the market today tend to think differently.

People are more interested in health, space, experience, authenticity, individuality and sustainability, as well as that most valued of commodities, time. Superficialty, ostentation, excess, noise and status are now giving way to enlightenment, authenticity, conscientiousness, discretion and symbolism. More intelligent approaches are  expected rather than sales and hype.

Mr Ahrens also outlined Hapag-Lloyd’s new Europa 2 product, to be introduced in the spring of 2013. Her cruises will not be as long as offered in the past by earlier Europa’s, but will be offered instead in 7-day segments that can also be taken as 14-day or 21-day vacations, with the ship triangulating on three ports, say Barcelona, Monte Carlo and Valletta in the western Mediterranean, or Venice, Athens and Istanbul in the eastern Med, with 7-day sectors offered between turnaround ports that repeat.

As to the ship itself, in addition to more verandahs and premium and spa suites, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises will pay more attention to the children of the affluent. While parents will be able to make their own “private arrangements” around their cruise holidays, children will now be attracted by a new brand co-operation with Steiff, the world’s oldest maker of teddy bears, and a new bear, Captain Knopf, will be introduced to take advantage of this.

Not only that, but the bears will be backed up by a program of children’s books. On board, children will be looked after in three different age groups, something quite different from what was offered in previous ships that carried the name Europa.

The Europa 2 will have seven plus one service restaurants, including a sushi bar, and free seating with open timing. And no extra tariff will be charged at any of the ship’s restaurants. This will be backed up by authentic culinary events.

Entertainment will consist of a mix of production shows, solo artists and theatre and the music and talks on board, as well as the decoration (by Partner Ship Design) will be more contemporary in nature.

In addition, the new ship will concentrate on fitness and wellness and there will be a broad range of interactive services, television, video, music, news, internet and services for information and reservations, all provided in cooperation with Siemens Media4Cruise.

Finally, in the winter time the Europa 2 will not perform world cruises, but shorter voyages in warm waters, for instance the Far East. The present Europa will meanwhile continue her program of world cruises for the ultra-luxury market while the Columbus 2, presently sailing as the Insignia, will look after the premium market.

For further information please consult The Cruise People at http://www.cruisepeople.co.uk/luxury.htm or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk

Images courtesy of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises and Steiff.

Hello to the world of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises!


Welcome to The Cruise People’s blog that will take a look at Hapag-Lloyd Cruises from a UK perspective. Why should anyone consider a cruise with Hapag-Lloyd? As one of the cruise line’s UK Preferred Agents, we will be giving you some of the reasons to do so as this blog develops.

The next two or three years will see many new developments from this line, a Columbus 2 in 2012, a Europa 2 in 2013 and more 7-night cruises for career people with families who seek the best, and a great choice of expedition voyages on board Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ renowned Bremen and Hanseatic, both of which have received recent makeovers. Try the Amazon to Peru or the Northwest Passage across Canada’s north.

Please feel free to contribute or to call Gay Scruton or Kevin Griffin at 020 7723 2450 to discuss anything to do with Hapag-Lloyd Cruises and we will be pleased to assist. Our own web site is at http://www.cruisepeople.co.uk while the English-language site for Hapag-Lloyd Cruises is http://www.hl-cruises.com, or you can e-mail us at cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk