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Holland America Line

The Western Mediterranean is considered to be one of the most diverse and unique cruising regions, spreading over two continents (Europe and Africa), this area boasts the artistic beauties of Italy, France and Spain whilst combining the Arabic culture in areas such as Morocco and Tunisia. These particular  itineraries are perfect for those interested in art and history, who also like to combine and  experience the areas most popular landmarks,  stunning beaches, cafes bars, boutique shops and traditional markets. Highlights include, the famous Las Ramblas, Barcelona, the cosmopolitan and thriving hub of this fantastic city. A visit to Capri, is a must from Sorrento or Naples

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Barcelona, Spain is the capital of Spain’s Catalonia area, and is considered to be one of Spain’s, or even Europe’s, most cosmopolitan and beautiful cities. Examples of this, is the incredible architecture, where the modern art, combines with the dark, yet equally beautiful gothic era, with Barcelona’s very own architect, Antoni Gaudi, examples of his works are infused within the city, one of the most famous of his works, the Sagrada Familia, is an absolute must see, for any visitor. Barcelona boasts a vibrant and beautiful old town, which is the heart of this cosmopolitan city. This area is home to many museums, cafes and bars, teamed with boutiques and shops. The famous Las Ramblas, runs through the heart of Barcelona, and is fringed with shops, restaurants, bars and is also home to the beautiful, historic opera house. Barcelona has many side streets, and historic squares that offer the chance to experience true Spanish tapas, washed down with a famous Spanish drink, sangria. Barcelona, is a major departure port for many cruise lines, and is quite often featured on many itineraries, with many passengers choosing to extend their holiday, by adding on a hotel stay, either before or after their cruise

 

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Las Ramblas, Barcelona

 

 

Rome, Italy is dubbed as Italy’s la dolce vita. The port of Civitavecchia, is around an hour’s train journey away from the centre of Rome, the train service operates directly from Civitavecchia. Highlights of this great city, include the Vatican, which is home to St. Peter’s Square and St. Pater’s Basilica. Step back in time, to the time of the Roman’s, and visit the world famous Colosseum. Other highlights of Rome, include the romantic Trevi Fountain, and the well known, Spanish Steps

 

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St. Peters Square – Vatican City

 

Colosseum, Rome

 

Sorrento and Naples, Italy. Highlights from Sorrento or Naples include the world famous archaeological site of Pompeii, in the Campania area of Italy, which was buried under ash after Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 A.D. The beautiful Amalfi Coast is within easy driving distance, along the coastal roads, leading to Ravello and Positano, and the island of Capri is easily reached, where stunning coastline combines with lush green gardens

 

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Pompeii

 

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The Amalfi Drive

Stay tuned for part 2 of my blog!

 

Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: mailto:Angelina@cruiseclubuk.com or 0161 7982536

 

Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: Angelina@cruiseclubuk.com or 0161 7982536

 

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western med 6Short duration cruises of less than seven nights, are the perfect long weekend breaks, and in the past Costa Cruises has been the leader for short duration cruises, with some itineraries ranging from three to five nights, embarking in either Barcelona or Genoa, and calling into ports such as Marseilles, Corsica and Majorca, to name a few. As these durations are becoming increasingly popular, cruise lines such as MSC, Royal Caribbean, Azamara and Oceania have a handful of four and five night duration sailings, the amount of time in port is less than longer duration sailings, however there may only be one day at sea, or none at all.

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The more popular Western Mediterranean itineraries are generally durations between seven to twelve nights, and depart from ports such as Barcelona, Rome and Marseilles, and guests can expect to visit the well known ports whilst enjoying some leisurely days at sea in between. Itineraries such as these, can include porting in the Canary Islands, Tunisia and Morocco

A perfect way to cruise the Western Mediterranean region, without the hassle of flying and checking in at airports, is to sail out directly from a UK port, such as the well known Southampton, with Harwich and Dover also being popular embarkation ports. Although this is a great option, not only for ease, but for an unlimited luggage allowance, there is of course a downfall, and this is the famous Bay of Biscay, which can either be a smooth sailing experience, or can be an extremely rocky sailing experience!

A cost effective way to cruise, is by sailing on a repositioning cruise, these cruises generally sail from the Mediterranean, over to the Caribbean, or from the Caribbean over to the Mediterranean. These itineraries can usually be found in April, May, September, October and into early November. These itineraries usually embark in Barcelona or Rome, and call into various Western Mediterranean ports, the Canary Islands and Morocco, before heading to the Caribbean

Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: Angelina@cruiseclubuk.com or 0161 7982536

 

Follow us on our social media channels for Exclusive Offers – Cruise News – Blogs – Competitions & much more:

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The Western Mediterranean is considered to be one of the most diverse and unique cruising regions, spreading over two continents (Europe and Africa), this area boasts the artistic beauties of Italy, France and Spain whilst combining the Arabic culture in areas such as Morocco and Tunisia. These particular  itineraries are perfect for those interested in art and history, who also like to combine and  experience the areas most popular landmarks,  stunning beaches, cafes bars, boutique shops and traditional markets. Highlights include, the famous Las Ramblas, Barcelona, the cosmopolitan and thriving hub of this fantastic city. A visit to Capri, is a must from Sorrento or Naples

 

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Royal Square, Barcelona

The Western Mediterranean as a cruising region, offers a spectrum of culture and arts, combined with beautiful beaches and a laid back atmosphere. Itineraries offered within this region include ports of call within, Spain, Italy and France, and sometimes include stops in Lisbon for Portugal, the Canary Islands, and Casablanca and Tangier for Morocco, and Gibralter

It was once considered best to visit the Western Mediterranean region during spring and the summer months, however cruise lines such as MSC and Costa are beginning to offer all year round itineraries within this area, with Barcelona and Marseilles (France),  still being included on the itinerary, they are now sailing further southwards towards Morocco and into the Canaries.

 

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Some of the larger ships usually visit the bigger ports, including destinations, such as Barcelona, Rome and Florence. The vast majority of cruise lines, including Royal Caribbean, Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, Holland America and Norwegian Cruise Line, tend to offer itineraries either starting in these ports, or featuring them on their itineraries

Costa Cruises and MSC Cruises are based from Italy, and can offer shorter cruise itineraries at much lower prices. For a more British feel, P&O Cruises and Cunard offer a variety of sailings, whilst the luxury cruise lines such as Azamara, Crystal, Silversea, Seabourn, Oceania and Regent Seven Seas offer itineraries to smaller ports of call such as Cannes, Capri and Portofino and often spend much longer in port.

Stay tuned for part 2 of my blog!!!

 

Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: Angelina@cruiseclubuk.com or 0161 7982536

 

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Fresh from our day aboard Holland America Lines Zuiderdam in Liverpool on Saturday 5th August 2017.

This was my first visit onboard a Holland America ship and upon arrival i was surprised to learn that the guest capacity is less than 2,000 as the ship looked like it could accommodate more. Having said that I found everywhere to be spacious.

From the moment we walked on every staff member we passed welcomed us and said good morning, a small gesture that goes along way!

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The wide teak decks give it a traditional look, with ample sunbeds and space surrounding the pool area at the aft of the ship. Plus you have a short walk to the Lido Market which provides casual dining for breakfast, lunch or dinner, all with a panoramic view out to sea. The different themed stations were easy to locate. My favourite was the pre made scrumptious sandwiches, ideal for on the go.

Explorations Café – powered by the New York Times is the place to get cakes and coffees, with plenty of book and table games to enjoy. Next door is the Crow’s Nest bar with panoramic views out to sea.

The other pool onboard has a sliding roof to accommodate the ever changing weather. This is where Dive In is located – offering grilled burgers or hot dogs

Dining venues

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The Pinnacle Grill had an amazing interior, from the quirky ceiling to the glass art work around the walls.

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We were fortunate enough to enjoy a 4 course meal onboard:

Starter

Soup

Main

Desert

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I’m not a fussy eater and found everything very satisfying. Plates were more than hot, service was excellent and of course the desert was devine.

If you’re looking for quality dining and the added touch the staff bring to your sailing then this is the cruise line for you. Especially if you like live music. Holland America Line won’t disappoint.

Update coming November 2017, adding music venues and more

Follow us on our social media channels for Exclusive Offers – Cruise News – Blogs – Competitions & much more:

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Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

 

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Holland America Cruise Lines have now introduced the Explore 4 once again by booking selected 2018 and 2019 sailings, these booking have to be made and confirmed by the 17th November 2017 and passengers will receive all 4 of these fabulous offers.

  1. Drinks package worth upto $1000.00 per stateroom
  2. Speciality Dining Experience
  3. Reduced fares for 3rd and 4th guests
  4. A 50% reduced deposit

If your in the position to book a Suite Cabin you will receive all of the above offers plus $200.00 onboard credit.

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Holland America have also announced the introduction of the lines New Chocolate Surprise – the ultimate Decadent Dessert Parade. The Chocolate Surprise will take place on the last Gala evening on every cruise. This will enable passengers to sit in the comfort of their seats whilst the chocolate surprises are being dished out, saving them the energy to walk to and from the Buffet area, this will also be available to guests in the main public areas as they can relax and sip a cocktail whilst enjoying the evenings entertainment. The parade that will last up to an hour is just another new addition that will add to Holland Americas ever growing list of culinary innovations.

The Chocolate surprise menu will comprise of bite size desserts that will be any sweet toothed persons passion, the servers will pass through the decks with silver trays handing out milk chocolate raspberry tarts, chocolate dipped marsh mallows, double chocolate cupcakes, chocolate macaroons with grand marnier, chocolate cones with lemon curd and also bittersweet chocolate and butter cream.

Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Follow us on our social media channels for Exclusive Offers – Cruise News – Blogs – Competitions & much more:

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Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: Colin@cruiseclub.com 0161 798 2511

 

If you have read my previous blog you will be fully read up on my trip to Amsterdam, here is part 2, our second day began with opening our curtains and seeing our ship MS Koningsdam  from our window, followed by the mother of all breakfasts at our hotel, there was so much to choose from, especially if your a sucker for fresh bread like me, and the most amazing cumin flavoured cheese, so much so I even bought some to bring home, the price I paid i shall not disclose!

MS Koningsdam is Holland America’s newest ship launched in April 2016 she is their largest in their fleet to date and the first in their Pinnacle class. And what a ship she is, I’ve seen quite a few whilst working here at Cruise Club UK but wow this is by far the most impressive ship for me

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Much more modern than I expected, Koningsdam has a bright open feel, what I loved most was the pale greys and creams with a splash of bright orange, pink and green flowers, beach towels and napkins giving an edge that makes her stand out from the others

Koningsdam, inkeeping with her Dutch heritage is a mix of contemporary and classic design which is significant of the Holland America line, her name also lends well to her roots “Koning,” means king in Dutch, and is a salute to King Willem-Alexander, the Netherland’s first king in over 100 years.

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We began our tour in the Atrium which was light and airy, followed by the spa and pool deck, including the exclusive concierge area with private sun loungers and hydrotherapy pool. Dining plays a large part on any cruise and you wont be disappointed on this ship. The Lido restaurant has a more upmarket feel to any other buffet restaurant, instead of one large serving area they have smaller individual themed service stations for different types of food.  The main restaurant was spectacular, bright and colourful with creams and yellows, the pictures you may have seen do not do this justice at all. There are also a number of new speciality restaurants and innovations including the Culinary Arts Center, new ala carte dining such as Tamarind, Canaletto and Sel de Mer. Then there was my favourite Blend by Chateau Ste. Michelle, where you can blend your own wine whilst sampling a variety of grapes to help create your perfect wine

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Artwork features heavily on the ship and with a modern feel you can discover creative new art around every corner, the Koningsdam has been decorated with a music theme and the art certainly blends well with this

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Club Hal is popular for families, I was even told that their kids clubs are one of the best at sea, although I would say Holland America isn’t a cruise line that first springs to mind they are very welcoming for the younger generation

Public areas flow with the same style of openess and space, plenty sunbeds around the pool with a retractable roof for when the weather isn’t too great, a homemade ice cream section and a modern style theatre ready for your evening entertainment

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All in all I was extremely impressed with this ship, my first Holland America experience, my only complaint was that we had to leave for our flight home, oh how tempted I was to become a stowaway.

Whether your a previous cruiser with Holland or similar lines, a first time cruiser or someone who likes the finer things in life I can truly recommend this ship and you will not be disappointed. She is currently sailing from Amsterdam to Northern Europe and then will move over to the Caribbean for the Winter season so if this sounds like your kind of cruise do not hesitate to contact me today marcia@cruiseclubuk.com

Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

 

 

 

 

Last weekend I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to fly to Amsterdam and sample the delights of a new promotion between Holland America and Superbreak

Superbreak are a rennouned company in the UK offering mainly hotels and theatre breaks, however this has all begun to change. They have recently expanded to offering worldwide hotels and tour packages and Amsterdam is one of their most popular breaks.

To gain an insight into what Superbreak packages have to offer a handful of travel agents were flown out for an unforgettable weekend to experience what our guests can book.

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Once we arrived in Amsterdam we met with a local tour guide who was very knowledgable in the history of the city and took a group of us on a walking tour beginning at the port walking past the train station, past the famous Dam square, the shopping district and of course the red light district, which in daylight was a bit underwhelming, until dark came and the area came to life.

Lunch was served at  Haesje Claes, a typical Dutch restaurant which was full at lunchtime. A traditional set menu was served including smoked mackeral, roast chicken and the most amazing apple and cinnamon cake for dessert.

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After lunch a wander around the flower market to see the many flowers and tulips on offer before we ventured back to our hotel, the grand Moevenpick right at the port. A beautiful hotel in an excellent location only a 10 minute walk from the central train station and situated right at the cruise terminal, we had a fantastic view of Royal Caribbean’s Vision of the Seas from our bedroom window and watched a typical sail away

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Once the evening came we were taken on a canal river boat dinner cruise, where we sailed through the canals of Amsterdam whilst being wined and dined with a 4 course meal and unlimited wine. Again a set menu which we had pre ordered but were given a choice of either meat, fish or vegetarian. The hosts offered a fantastic service and we saw a lovely sun set whilst onboard before arriving back at the dock, where we treated ourselves to a couple of cheeky drinks before heading back to our hotel for a well deserved nights rest before our visit to Holland America’s new MS Koningsdam on Sunday morning.

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To read more please see my next blog by clicking HERE

Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Email me to discuss your dream cruise: marcia@cruiseclubuk.com

 

Holland America  140 Years of Experience:

    Why Not check our May Mailer offers based on the following itineraries:

 Adriatic & Western Med

Southern Caribbean

Far east

Cruise Asia and the Pacific with Holland America Line

The large fleet with the teak wrap around decks, large cabins’ Dining venues diverse in every way to suit all passengers taste’s Entertainment program to surpass anything and activities on board.

Many awards for service such as the International 5 star diamond award for the Hospitality given from the moment you step on board:

Verandah room

Having experienced Holland America 1st hand  when we visited the new ship Konningsdam in 2016 Whilst in the wonderful Amsterdam.So with all  these great characteristics  what more do you need when sailing either around the Mediterranean or the Far east, America the world is your Oyster.

Audience clapping at Main Stage

The med is a popular destination for a 1st time cruiser thinking is this for me or not, but once you have stepped on board and had the 1st cocktail sat up on deck just watching the world go by, getting ready for your evening and that 1st culinary experience you can make your own if you like,  or just sit back and let the wonderful chefs work their magic.

Entertainment again on board second to none even if you just want to sit there and sip your cocktail having

your after diner chat  with your new found friends you will have lots to talk about once your cruise has visited some of them wonderful destination you only thought about.

The wow factor will always be something i get when i board the many cruise’s throughout my experience just around the corner something different a hidden gem.

Sometimes keep it to yourself.

Again with the many cruise lines out there Holland America have a reward scheme called the Mariner

So build the points up and get the discounts redeemed of the cost of the next cruise and so on. So the more your cruise the more points you make.

So with are new program coming out this month with lots of different cruise options to choose maybe Holland America will be the next cruise you decided to take.

Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1). That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Don’t forget: Get up to £100 off your next cruise with Double Bonus Points

Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: Olive@cruiseclub.com 0161 798 8246

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Introducing the ELITE Beverage package from Holland America..……

The current offering from Holland America for an all inclusive drinks package is their Signature package. This is approx $45 per person per day if purchased online in advance or increases to approx $50 per person per day if taken out on board. This particular package allows unlimited wine, beers, soda soft drinks, cocktails, spirits and specialty coffees up to the value of $8 per serving.

The new ELITE package will give access to premium branded spirits and higher priced wines, beer and cocktails. Soda soft drinks, bottled water and specialty coffees are also still included. Basically, with the Elite package you have access to any drink up to the value of $15 per serving.

In addition, if you are sailing on MS Koningsdam, the Elite package also includes the Coca Cola freestyle machines which offer around 100 flavour combinations! This sounds fun to me!

If you are not looking for a fully all inclusive package, and love your wine there is also the ‘ Cellar Master Package ‘. This includes 5 bottles of wine, a standard and premium wine tasting, one pinnacle grill dinner, a commemorative bottle of wine and a wine accessory gift set. The price of this package is approx $252 per person.

For those who don’t drink alcohol there is also a soda package, which I always think is great value for money, which is approx $8 per person per day or a ‘Quench’ package which includes not only soda soft drinks but non alcoholic cocktails, non alcoholic beers, juices and specialty coffees. This package is approx $18 per person per day.

A great variety of packages available with Holland America to suit everyone’s tastes.

Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1) That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: natalie@cruiseclubuk.com  0161 798 2506

Holland America Line have endless activities on board their sailings, but that doesn’t stop there for the 5* Cruise Line. They have signed a two year brand partnership with “O, The Oprah Magazine”.

They recently announced their partnership with BBC Earth and now they have teamed up with the one and only Oprah Winfrey, America’s most loved Talk-Show Host.

This partnership will bring Oprah’s Book Club on board more than 300 sailings this year and 2018 as well as fitness classes including tai chi and meditation, Enrichment courses and demonstrations on Healthy eating, and the travel-friendly fashion of Adam Glassman, Oprah’s creative director.

During the Alaska sailing, 15th July 2017 departure from Seattle, Oprah will spend two days on board the Eurodam which will be her first trip.

They have named the sailings as “Adventure of your Life”, and have four secured as of now. These will feature special guests who are to yet to be advised.

Started in 1996 by the Queen of Talk Show herself, Oprah’s Book Club has nearly 25,000 active members who share their passion for reading. Members currently have live question and answers, videos and discussions online. You can also get involved and share your thoughts on Twitter by using the hashtag #oprahsbookclub. All books selected to be featured in Oprah Book Club are all chosen by Oprah herself.

If you have a passion for reading and cruising, this is a perfect combination for you. The amazing five star cruise line will not disappoint, that’s for sure.

Did you know here at Cruise Club UK we have a Loyalty Bonus Scheme. Book your chosen cabin type and you can receive up to 50 Bonus Points (1 Point = £1). That’s a saving of up to £50 off your next cruise booked with us.  

Email or call me to discuss your dream cruise: Michellehaslam@cruiseclubuk.com or call me directly on 0161 798 2512.