February 26, 2009

Family Cruise News

The new Carnival Dream will feature the largest and most elaborate water park at sea, including a 303-foot-long, four-deck-high corkscrew water slide with another 104-foot-long spiral water slide that leads into a giant funnel. The ship also introduces Carnival's first 18-hole miniature golf course. The ship caters to children, 'tweens and teens with more than 19,000 square feet of space of indoor & outdoor play space and supervised programs for ages 2 - 17.

Younger children will enjoy arts and crafts, toys and games, while older children & teens will have video games such as PlayStation and Wii, a karaoke machine, air hockey and foosball tables. Teens will also have their own separate area with dance club, soda bar, video jukebox, arcade games, and internet workstations, or can enjoy Carnival's Y-Spa youth spa program. Multi-generational activities will also be offered for the whole family, including pizza-making sessions, family water play and trivia contests.

Princess Cruises has teamed with Klutz® to provide high-quality arts and crafts projects for young passengers to enjoy onboard. Custom-built kits have been designed to engage young cruisers in fun and creative activities, a unique offering in the cruise industry which will be available fleetwide.

Children will have the opportunity to participate in up to seven Klutz® activities during their cruise: to build their own storybooks; create lanyard bracelets; make “picture tags” for charm bracelets, luggage tags, or pet I.D.s; create fuzzy masterpieces with Velvet Art; craft paper flowers, weave friendship bracelets; or make thumbprint art. The new Klutz® activities are offered for young passengers of all ages, and are scheduled during the youth center’s regular activities or during the ship’s family fun fair in the atrium, where all family members can join in.

Disney Cruise Line® was named the top large cruise ship experience and top 5 best spas at sea by the readers of Condé Nast Traveler magazine. Disney recently announced a new service beginning in March that makes cruising with very young children even easier - baby supply delivery service. Guests can order items such as diapers, baby food, and infant formula before their cruise, and have them delivered directly to their stateroom.

Disney also announced 50% off for kids 12 and under. This offer is available for most sailings from March 26 through May 14, 2009. Government taxes and fees not included, and there must be full-fare guests in the same stateroom.

Royal Caribbean announced new services for guests booked in suites, designed to focus on distinctive and personalized service. New service enhancements include:

> Dedicated check-in lines
> Complimentary cabin amenities such as luxury spa robes, slippers, fruit plate, and chocolates at turndown
> Pre-dinner cheese presentation on the first formal night
> Exclusive privilege of ordering from the main dining room's menus for in-suite dining
> A selection of Mattel board games delivered to the suite
> Priority disembarkation and complimentary valet luggage service

RCCL’s Mariner of the Seas arrived in Los Angeles this week, to sail year-round on 7 night Mexican Riviera cruises. This is the largest ship to offer cruises from the West Coast, and it features the line’s iconic rock wall, a nine-hole miniature golf course, an ice-skating rink, a full size basketball court, and an inline skating track. Running nearly the length of the ship is the Royal Promenade, a boulevard of shops, restaurants, bars and lounges.

Costa Cruises will equip public areas and cabins with Sony PlayStation video game systems. Ships will feature PlayStation World, an area with PlayStation 3 consoles. There will also be PlayStations 3's available via on-demand service in cabins. The children’s and teens’ clubs will have PlayStation 2 consoles. After dark, Costa will hold “PlayStation Nights” on the lido decks of four of their ships, where gamers will play on giant screens.

For more information about finding the perfect cruise for your family, contact Suzette Mack, Family Travel Specialist, at suzette@family-treks.com

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