Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Disney Cruise Lines New Itineraries and Ports for 2012

For the first time ever, Disney Cruise Line® will set sail from three new ports in 2012 – New York, Seattle and Galveston – making the Disney family cruise vacation more accessible to your Clients around the country. There are also more itinerary choices than ever before, including one special voyage to Hawai‘i.

Platinum/Gold Castaway Club Members, bookings will open via phone at 8 a.m. EDT on Thursday, April 7, 2011. All others can book beginning at 8 a.m. EDT on Friday, April 8, 2011.

New York Sailings
Beginning May 25, 2012, the Disney Magic® will sail a total of 20 cruises from New York.
  • 8-night Bahamian cruises include a day at Disney’s Castaway Cay and a stop at Port Canaveral, gateway to the Walt Disney World® Resort. As part of this itinerary, your Client will receive a one-day Park Hopper® Ticket and roundtrip transportation between the ship and resort.
  • 5-night Canadian/New England cruises will visit Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Saint John, New Brunswick.
  • 2-night cruises are perfect for Clients looking for a quick getaway at sea over a weekend.
Seattle Sailings
Beginning May 28, 2012, the Disney Wonder® will sail a total of 14 cruises to Alaska from the Port of Seattle, Wash.
Galveston Sailings
Beginning Sept. 22, 2012, the Disney Magic will sail 12 cruises from the Port of Galveston, Texas.
Los Angeles Sailings
In addition to 7-night Mexican Riviera cruises, the Disney Wonder will set sail on Disney’s first-ever voyage to Hawai‘i on April 29, 2012.
The Disney Dream™ will continue to sail 3-, 4- and 5-night Bahamian cruises. The new Disney Fantasy™ will offer Eastern and Western Caribbean itineraries, beginning with the maiden voyage on March 31, 2012. Sail dates for both ships are now available through December 2012.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Virgin Islands for the Caribbean Virgin

So you are ready to leave the country and set forth on a Caribbean adventure but with all the islands to choose from, where do you begin? Perhaps you should start at home. The U.S. Virgin Islands, 1100 miles southeast of Miami, are an excellent entrée to the Caribbean without leaving the comfort and security of home. Sure you'll actually leave the United States mainland, so it feels as if you've left the country, but language, currency, drivers license, banking are all the same so you won't have to feel out of your element. In fact, you don't even need a passport to travel to the USVI! So for the Caribbean virgins out there, the USVI is a great starting point. Maybe that's why they're named the Virgin Islands!

The US Virgin Islands are comprised of three magnificent islands: St Thomas, St Croix and St John. They are all uniquely different and are located close enough together so that which ever island you make your home base, you can easily take a day trip to the others via high speed ferries or a catamaran. The British Virgin Islands are also just a short hop away and can also be seen on a day trip, but these islands do require a passport.

All three of the USVI have a myriad of accommodations available. Luxury all inclusive resorts, grand hotels, condos, villas, private guest houses to small inns are options for your choosing. Camping is even an option on St John.

A US Driver's license is acceptable for car rental, just keep in mind that a tiny bit of the British influence still remains and driving is on the left side of the road, with the driver's seat on the right side of the vehicle. At first, it's a little nerve-wracking, but in no time you will learn to follow the other drivers and suddenly you are an expert. With your own vehicle it is so much easier to explore the island and try all the beaches, restaurants and attractions that are available. There are of course taxis and buses for those not wanting to drive.

St Thomas is known primarily for its heavy concentration of duty free shops in the capital city of Charlotte Amalie. It is a bustling stop on the cruise ship routes and is the busiest cruise-ship harbor in the West Indies. This small island is only 12 miles long and 3 miles wide, but there is a lot of activity for such a small space. Rich in history, it is delightful to walk the narrow passageways in town where chic shops now occupy ancient Danish warehouses that once stored pirate loot. Don't miss the opportunity to go to Fort Christian, the oldest standing building in the Virgin Islands and home to a great museum offering a glimpse into the island's multicultural history. Fascinating Blackbeard's Castle, which is now a restaurant and hotel, is also an interesting look into a 17th century tower.

St Croix, the largest of the three US Virgin Islands, is a little more tranquil than St Thomas although the capital city of Christiansted does offer numerous shopping venues. The real attraction of St Croix is Buck Island National Park. Several tour operators offer day trips to this protected underwater national monument, which has excellent underwater trails for snorkelers filled with brightly colored corals and marine life.

St John, the smallest of the three, is really the most beautiful and least developed. Two thirds of St John is a national park with guided trails and a third of the park is underwater. Laurence Rockefeller donated his acquired land on the island to the United States' National Park Service in 1956, provided that the lands remain protected from any future development. These early eco conscious provisions make this is a stunning island with perfect white sand beaches that stretch for miles. St John is a peaceful, non-commercialized natural wonder with postcard perfect beaches and views. Accessible only by boat, there are no cruise ship ports, airports or high-rise buildings; just a simple, natural, beautiful island.

Whether you are a Caribbean veteran or a 'virgin' to the West Indies, everyone should visit the US Virgin Islands at least once. They are a national treasure of beauty and diverse cultures that deserve to be fully experienced.

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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Celebrity Cruise Line Solstice Reveiw.....Solstice Review

From the moment you are handed your mimosa as you step on board to the moment you step off at the end of your cruise this ship entertains you, relaxes you and makes you feel like you have pampered in luxury.

The public areas are spacious and this feeling is enhanced by tranquil lighting. The pedestrian traffic flow through the ship works incredibly well. There is an amazing choice of bars, lounges and eating options. As you'd expect, there is, the usual high standard main restaurant and the casual buffet style Oceanview cafe. The main dining room is stunning and the food was above par for a main dinning room. There are also four specialty restaurants, that are well worth trying: Silk Harvest serving Asian cuisine, Tuscan Grille steakhouse, Murano French cuisine and Blu. Although they all carry a surcharge they're well worth trying for something different or for a special occasion.

The Blu restaurant is reserved primarily for guests staying in AquaClass cabins. These are ideal for those looking for that little extra bit of peace, quiet and luxury. AquaClass guests also have their own spa area, The Persian Garden, with its steam rooms and aromatherapy this makes this grade of cabin great value.

 Celebrity promised a new cabin layout, which results in 15 percent more space and creative solutions, such as lots of storage areas for clothes and luggage, flat-panel televisions, and a “shaving bar” suggested by Celebrity’s “leading ladies,” a panel of five ordinary women who gave their input into what they wanted most in staterooms and bathrooms.The Celebrity Solstice “stateroom” is very modern, spacious, and comfortable.  When you open the door to the room, you won't believe how big it is. It was like a small hotel room, not the typical closet that you find on so many ships. The added bonus was the size of the balcony, with its table and chairs. The modern bathroom had a lot of room to move and store cosmetic items. (Also note that the “public” bathrooms around the ship were ultra modern and very cool in design and features – urinals had famous quotes to read – the details on this ship are amazing!). The room was clearly designed with people in mind. Even the life jackets were placed for easy access under the bed (along with your suitcases which easily fit under there). Celebrity also provides you with a hair dryer, a small fridge (which comes stocked), a safe, and items that you can use on a complimentary basis which you can purchase (such as an umbrella, bath robe, etc).

The Solstice is calming, relaxing, and classy but not stuffy. Celebrity has a luxury line of ships in the Solstice class....and have done an outstanding job. Clients looking for something more than a party ship atmosphere, food and wine lovers, or those looking to cruise in a luxurious ship without luxury pricing will enjoy the Celebrity Solstice.

The Solstice sails the Caribbean in the winter, and the Mediterranean in the summer.
                          SAMPLE 8-DAY CARIBBEAN ITINERARY - Prices from $749 to $1149 per person

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Monday, February 14, 2011

Romance in Disney....Love is in the air at Disney World

Disney isn't just for kids. Disney is carriage rides through a resort that resembles the old South. It is a dinner that culminates in a delicious desert while outside the sky fills with a spectacular fireworks display over Cinderella's castle. It is a private desert party for two during Illuminations, or on the beach at the Grand Floridian. How about dinner on a luxury yacht? All this and more can make any girls swoon. From visits with the characters to help you pop the question, to candle lit dinners you can have it all. Disney is full of quaint out of the way areas to sit and watch the world pass with your honey, to dancing the night away or a Cirque show. If you like couples spa treatments there are many to be had here. With the great spas on property.Drink around the World and taste the beverage of that land.  I can be here all night. If you can imagine it you can do it at Disney World, and it is definitely not just for kids and families.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

2011 Emerging Vacation Trends..

If vacations are any indication of a better economy then it is improving somewhere. Our phone has been ringing of the hook and 80% of it is Disney World and nearby parks, and cruises. Families are booking both of these daily. Getting a room for a school vacation before summer is getting difficult. So, if you are planning Disney or a cruise this summer book soon. The Disney Dream did not have any inside cabin available through the summer at all. April vacation rooms in Disney is getting scarce.

Last year people did staycations or short vacations. 4 ad 5 night cruises were popular. This year 7 night cruises are back up there. People want the larger ships, and many good prices can be found on many of the smaller ships. With Disney, Free dining was available through the summer for those who booked early. Right now there is 40% off and other discount.

Families tend to book about 4-5 months out. The young (in their 20's) tend to make last minute vactions, and those over 40 plan about 6 months or more out, from what I see in my customers.

Lesson to be learned is, to book what you like at a price you are happy with and go enjoy your vacation! Call us for your vacation needs especially for this summer. Book now for the best selections to where you want to go.

We take the stress out of planning and researching your vacation, 
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