Hapag-Lloyd Cruises Gets Top Ratings Yet Again in the Berlitz Guide to Cruising 2012: MS Europa Retains Her Lead

The ratings for Hapag-Lloyd Cruises have been improved upon in the Berlitz Guide to Cruising 2012:  and MS Europa has retained her lead position

•     MS Europa remains the only ship with 5-star-plus award
•     MS Bremen has received 4-stars-plus for the first time

MS Europa, the flagship of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises, is the only cruise ship in the world to be awarded the highest rating 5-stars plus rating in the new 2012 edition of the renowned Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships. The expedition ship Bremen received an even better rating than in previous years and was awarded 4-stars-plus for the first time.

With 1852 out of a maximum of 2000 points, the Europa received the highest rating of all 285 ships tested. The Hanseatic scored 1746 points, making her the only expedition ship to be awarded five stars. The second Hapag-Lloyd Cruises expedition ship, the MS Bremen, was upgraded and received the award 4-stars-plus for the first time with 1553 points.

Author Douglas Ward and his team tested a total of 285 cruise ships from all over the world, assessing criteria such as ship furnishings, quality and diversity in the restaurants, service and crew, entertainment and cruise experience. In this year’s edition of the Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships, they are once again awarding the rating 5- stars-plus to only one ship: MS Europa. Douglas Ward states the outstanding culinary creations of starred chef Dieter Mueller as being the reason for this decision and adds: “Europa has stood the test of time, and looks almost new. “

Sebastian Ahrens, managing director of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises, comments, “The very good ratings of our ships confirm that the consistent investments in and further developments of our range of products and services are worthwhile. Certainly, it is primarily the recent and comprehensive shipyard works on the Bremen that have contributed to our expedition ship being awarded an additional ’plus’.“

Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruising & Cruise Ships by Douglas Ward, 720 pages, paperback, is also available as an application for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.

For more information on Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ exciting destinations and itineraries visit the Hapag-Lloyd Cruises web site. For bookings, inquiries, or to request a brochure, please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

MS Hanseatic – Expedition Northwest Passage: On the Trail of the Great Discoverers – Summer 2012

https://hapaglloydcruises.files.wordpress.com/2011/06/hapag-lloyd-logo6.jpgMS HANSEATIC – Your Personal Expedition

Expedition Northwest Passage: On the Trail of the Great Discoverers

From Nome to Reykjavik (HAN1215) via Alaska (Point Hope, Barrow Strait), Canada (Herschel Island, Cambridge Bay, Jenny Lind Island, Beechey Island), Greenland (Uummannaq, Illulissat, cruising in Disko Bay, Sisimiut) and cruising through Prins Christian Sund

14 August – 8 September 2012, 25 days

From £11,540 per person in a guaranteed two-berth outside cabin Category 1, double occupancy, cruise only including charter flight Vancouver-Nome


§ Hike across the Holman hills near Ulukhaktok, Northwest Territories, with experts
§ Legendary Northwest Passage with polar bears, whales and numerous testimonies to the culture of the Inuit
§ Greenland: Enjoy the unforgettable views of drafting icebergs while cruising the Disko Bay

Early Booking Reduction: Book by January 16, 2012 and receive a 5% reduction!

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

MS Hanseatic’s New-Look Staterooms

Here are some images of the newly-rebuilt staterooms on board Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ luxury expedition ship MS Hanseatic after her recent refit at Blohm & Voss in Hamburg.

For details of expedition voyages to the Antarctic, the South Pacific, the Amazon or the Northwest Passage on board MS Hanseatic and her fleetmate MS Bremen please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London, England, on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

Things To Do In Hamburg, Headquarters of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises

Hapag-Lloyd’s famous headquarters building on the Ballindam in Hamburg

In response to a member who requested information on what do do during a cruise call in Hamburg, New York-based writer Ted Scull, author of 100 Best Cruise Vacations: The Top Cruises Throughout the World for All Interests and Budgets, made the following comments in a recent post to the Liners List on the Internet:-

The former Hamburg-Süd cargo ship Cap San Diego now serves as a floating hotel

“The Maritime Museum is ten fabulous floors with all the space in the world and thousands of ship models, many, of course, from Peter Tam’s collection which used to be housed down river in a former hotel; stupendous Miniatur Wunderland has some ships/harbor craft in its two floors of model railway settings; view from St. Michealis Church of city, river and harbor; walk through the pedestrian tunnel to the shipyard side for a great view back to the city; go for the English-speaking harbor tour from Langdungsbrücken as you get to see the container port not seen from the river walks; Cap San Diego; Ballin Stadt, an immigration museum; Hapag-Lloyd’s HQ facing the Alster and 1876 steamer St. Georg (you will hear its whistle from time to time); great city to walk; excellent transit, including one elevated line that parallels the Elbe.

“I Love Hamburg!”

The Hamburg Maritime Museum covers ten floors near the Hamburg waterfront

Fellow writer, Singapore-based Jonathan Boonzaier, who reports for the Norwegian shipping newspaper Tradewinds, adds:-

The clipper ship Rickmer Rickmers also serves as a floating restaurant

“Last year I visited the museum and stayed on board the Cap San Diego. Both are well worth a visit, along with a visit to the bright green sailing ship Rickmer Rickmers. If I were arranging a day visit to Hamburg I’d spend two hours on the Cap San Diego in the morning, have a lunchtime visit to the Rickmer Rickmers allowing an hour to explore the ship and another hour for lunch in her excellent restaurant, and then spend the entire afternoon at the Maritime Museum, where you would need at least three hours to do it justice. You can walk from the Cap San Diego to the Rickmer Rickmers in five minutes and there is a ferry service between the Rickmer Rickmers and the Maritime Museum.”

For passengers boarding Hapag-Lloyd cruise ships in Hamburg, or nearby Kiel on the Baltic coast, The Cruise People will be pleased to assist with further details. For further information on Hapag-Lloyd Cruises on board the Europa, Europa 2, Hanseatic, Bremen or Columbus 2 please feel free to call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

OnAir Now Supplies Mobile Phone Service To Three Hapag-Lloyd Ships

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises has equipped two more vessels with OnAir’s mobile phone services. MS Hanseatic (seen above in her new Hapag-Lloyd colours) and MS Bremen extend the number of vessels using OnAir’s service to three.

OnAir’s satellite service allows passengers to use their own mobile devices for calls, text messages, email and mobile data. The passengers are billed by their mobile device operator.

“MS Hanseatic and MS Bremen take passengers to the most remote parts of the world, including the polar regions, the Amazon, and the South Seas,” says Paul Goldbeck, Director IT of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises.

“We are very focused on providing excellent service and with some cruises lasting up to a month, as we have seen from our experience with MS Europa, the ability to stay in touch is crucial for our passengers.”

The OnAir service utilises the ships’ existing satellite system. The equipment can be installed during routine maintenance stops between cruises and the technology has been designed to make it simple to increase capacity according to demand.

“We have been operating on MS Europa for a year now, and it is a gratifying endorsement that Hapag-Lloyd has decided to install our mobile phone services to two further ships,” says Ian Dawkins, CEO of OnAir.  “We are all increasingly dependent on our phones and it shouldn’t be surprising that cruise ship passengers want to keep in contact.”

Swiss-based OnAir, a joint venture of Airbus and air transport IT specialist SITA, also supplies services for inflight telephony and internet connectivity.

For further imformation on Hapag-Lloyd Cruises worldwide program of luxury and expedition cruises please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

MS Hanseatic Receives New Hapag-Lloyd Cruises Colours And Cabin Renewals During Major Refit at Blohm & Voss

MS Hanseatic received full Hapag-Lloyd Cruises colours in here recent drydocking at Hamburg's famous Blohm & Voss shipyard

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises has decided to unify the colours carried by all members of its fleet. After a 13-day stay at Hamburg’s famous Blohm & Voss shipyard, the Hanseatic has re-appeared in Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ distinctive colours, an orange and blue band, as well as the orange funnel with the cruise line logo. Her comprehensive drydocking included more than 780 items, among them, the renovation and modernisation of two decks of cabins, the buffet restaurant, and the sauna and pool area. The ship returned to service today.

“With the charter contract for the Hanseatic extended until 2018, we opted to add the visual unification of the fleet. Nevertheless, the legendary former logo of the Hanseatic will be retained as a product logo on board“, said Sebastian Ahrens, Managing Director of Hapag-Lloyd Cruises. Until now, the expedition ship Hanseatic had carried the colours of the former North Atlantic liner of the same name, which had operated for the German Atlantic Line.

More than 400 shipyard workers in three shifts carried out the modernisation, which included substantial renovation of cabins on Decks 5 and 6. Plenty of wood, new fabrics, furniture and carpeting help to create a warm atmosphere, and now present a contemporary design for the Hanseatic . The Columbus Lounge buffet restaurant also features a new color design and has been renamed the “Bistro Lemaire.” Further items included the modernisation of the pool and sauna, with a new steam sauna, as well as a multi-mode shower. More than 11,482 sq ft of carpet, 621 gallons of paint and 3,937 sq ft of fabric were used in these renovations.

New service options now available on the Hanseatic include worldwide mobile telephone reception via OnAir, Wi-Fi in all cabins, an extended selection of international newspapers in full editions, as well as headsets for passengers during the excursions for better clarity for the experts to be heard.

Shining in her new splendour, the Hanseatic set sail today on a four-day cruise from Hamburg via List (Sylt) and Binz (Ruegen) to Travemuende on the Baltic.

Upcoming 2011 Expedition Cruises on the Hanseatic :


For the first time ever, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises will offer guests the opportunity to discover the fascination of the Arctic and the Northwest Passage on a shorter, 19-day cruise with MS Hanseatic. Sailing through a portion of the Northwest Passage, guests will follow the tracks of Amundsen and Franklin and explore the ice coast of Greenland as well as the untouched island world in the north of Canada. The short itinerary departs from Kangerlussuaq in Greenland on August 14, 2011, and ends in Reykjavik, Iceland, on September 2nd.


Guests will experience the heavenly and exotic island world between the Seychelles, Madagascar and Mauritius onboard the Hanseatic in November/December 2011, with a new stop in Nosy Lakandava in Madagascar. This 14-day itinerary departs from Victoria, Mahe, on November 22, 2011, and ends in Port Louis, Mauritius, on December 5th.

MS Hanseatic, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises’ small and beautifully-appointed ship, rated the world’s only 5-star expedition ship by the Berlitz Complete Guide to Cruise Ships & Cruising, was designed to provide intensive exploration in the most elegant surroundings for a maximum of 184 passengers. The Hanseatic is known worldwide for her unsurpassed ability to navigate and explore the difficult waters of the Arctic and Antarctic, with the highest ice class for passenger vessels, E4. The Hanseatic cruises the world year round, landing in unusual and remote destinations. A shallow draft and high manoeuvrability allow the ship to enter waters larger cruise vessels cannot reach.

For further photos and details of this latest modernisation please click here. For bookings, enquiries or to request a brochure, please call Gay Scruton at The Cruise People Ltd in London on 020 7723 2450 or e-mail cruise@cruisepeople.co.uk.

Expedition Cruises: Hanseatic and Bremen offer travel to the world’s best-kept secrets in their new 2012/2013 program

Expedition Cruises: Hanseatic and Bremen offer travel to the world’s best-kept secrets in 2012/2013

•     Twelve international cruises 2012/ 2013 (English/German)

•     First Time: Sea of Okhotsk

•     Environmentally conscious travel

MS Hanseatic

Hapag-Lloyd Cruises announces the arrival of its March 2012 – May 2013 expedition brochure. Their small and beautifully appointed expedition ships, MS Hanseatic and MS Bremen, will offer fully a dozen international (English/German) itineraries next season. These include travel in Antarctica, the Northwest Passage, Greenland, Spitsbergen, Norway, the Amazon, the South Seas and New Zealand.

In addition, the expedition itineraries feature new ports of call in Madagascar and Mozambique and a maiden voyage through the Sea of Okhotsk in Russia’s Far East. The Hanseatic , the world’s only 5-star expedition ship and the Bremen, a 4-star expedition ship, were created to provide intensive exploration in the most elegant surroundings for a maximum of 184 guests on the Hanseatic and 164 guests on the Bremen.

Expedition Highlights 2012 – 2013 on the Hanseatic and Bremen:


For the first time, the Hanseatic sets out to circumnavigate the Sea of Okhotsk, in Russia’s Far East, taking guests to volcanoes, geysers and glaciers. Zodiac stops on the Sea of Okhotsk include: Iony, a tiny island populated by sea lions and Shantar Islands and Malminskie Islands, natural sanctuaries for songbirds, birds of prey, seals and sea otters.

Details: from June 13-30, 2012, rates for this itinerary start at £6310 per person based on double occupancy for an outside cabin


Guests will experience lemurs in pristine nature, animals in the wild, and wonderful beaches on romantic coasts on the Hanseatic through Mauritius, Madagascar, Mozambique and South Africa. This tropic 16-day adventure will make stops at six new ports along the route, which include stops in the following ports in Madagascar: Maroantsetra, Nosy Hara, Morondava, Nosy Ve, and Toliara and a first time stop in Mozambique, at the picturesque city of Ilha dos Portugueses.

Details: from December 3-19, 2012, rates for this itinerary start at  £4520 per person based on double occupancy for an outside cabin


In 2012, the popular Northwest Passage will be offered onboard the Hanseatic . It starts in Nome/Alaska amidst impressive testimonies of the Inuit culture before the Hanseatic sails through the Canadian Arctic, the heart of the Northwest Passage and ends in Reykjavik/Iceland.

Details: from August 14 – September 8, 2012, rates for this 25-day itinerary start at £11,540 per person/based on double occupancy for an outside cabin

MS Bremen


Glaciers, icebergs, deep fjords and bays offer the setting for an unforgettable Antarctica expedition. In addition to observing bird colonies, guests will also have the opportunity to explore the Falkland Islands and South Georgia, bath in the hot springs on Deception Island and observe whales in the Antarctic Sound. All departs include round-trip airfare from Buenos Aires/Argentina to Ushuaia/Argentina.

Dates and rates for the Antarctica cruises’ in late 2012 and early 2013:

Details: November 30 – December 15, 2012, on the Bremen, rates starting at £5380 per person based on double occupancy for an outside cabin

Details: January 3 – 18, 2013, on the Bremen, rates starting at £6010 per person/ based on double occupancy for an outside cabin

Details: February 13 – March 3, 2013, on the Hanseatic , rates starting at £7440 per person based on double occupancy for an outside cabin

Expedition Travel At Its Best:

Both ships are well equipped for travel in difficult waters, holding the highest ice class ranking for passenger vessels (E4). Also shallow drafts and high manoeuvrability allow the ships to enter waters larger cruise vessels cannot reach. Guests explore the world’s best-kept secrets in zodiacs (small motorized boats) with only 10-12 guests. Onboard experts include a team of experienced scientists, expedition leaders and specialists who guide landings and offer guests the rare opportunity to observe plant and animal life up close. However, what makes these expedition adventures standout for guests is the security of knowing that highly experienced captains are guiding the vessels and have together already traveled to the Arctic and Antarctica more than 200 times.

Educational experiences are the ultimate goals of the expedition trips. Thereby also, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises is committed to promoting a responsible way of dealing with nature – among other efforts as a co-founder of the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators (AECO) and member of the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO). In addition, the Hanseatic and the Bremen use low-emission diesel oil rather than heavy fuel oil on cruises to Antarctica, and have been doing so long before the introduction of the current, stricter regulations.

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