Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line reports that it is resuming cruises after its sole ship, Grand Celebration, was chartered by FEMA for hurricane relief. Looking further ahead, a second ship is on the way.
The Grand Celebration will resume its regularly scheduled two-night sailings on December 23 from Palm Beach to the Bahamas with special holiday events, including an appearance by Santa and a special New Year’s Eve party. The ship had been chartered by FEMA to provide housing to first responders and National Guard members engaged in relief and rebuilding efforts in the U.S. Virgin Islands following the damage caused by Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria.
The cruise line has also announced plans for a second ship, the Grand Classica, to launch in April 2018 and also offer two-night cruises to Grand Bahama Island. The new ship will make Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line the only line to offer daily departures to the Bahamas from the Port of Palm Beach, the cruise line said. It has signed a three-year agreement with the Bahamas to bring both ships to the island for two-night cruises and Cruise & Resort Stay packages.
When it sets sail December 23, the Grand Celebration will have a number of upgrades including:
- Expanded, Enhanced Casino – Grand Celebration’s Par-A-Dice Casino has doubled in size, offering more slot machines, video poker, and enhanced table games. Nearly 70 of the most popular slot games have been added to the casino, bringing the total number of slots to 125, in addition to several new video poker machines. The casino’s table games area, which includes Roulette, Blackjack, Craps, Three Card Poker and the Ultimate Texas Hold ‘Em Poker, have been divided into two comfortable areas and now also include raised maximum betting limits, the ability to make additional wages while playing blackjack, and the addition of electronic roulette machines for those who like to play without a crowd watching.
- New Adults-Only Area – The forward sun deck at the top of the ship has now become The Oasis – a complimentary adults-only area for those ages 18 and over. The area includes a bar, a hot tub, new sun loungers and several outdoor daybeds.
- Specialty Coffee Bar and Juice Bar – Baristas will prepare specialty coffees and offer gelato and pastries at the new Grand Café on Deck 9. Menu items include a variety of hot or iced specialty coffees, teas and other beverages, including smoothies and freshly squeezed juices. In the morning, guests can have chocolate croissants, Viennese pastries, muffins, and quiche. Throughout the day, the Grand Café will offer sweet treats, including homemade gelato, sorbet, cakes, tarts, cupcakes and chocolate truffles.
The new Grand Classica, set to launch in April 2018, will carry up to 1,680 guests and will have 685 staterooms, a number of restaurants and bars, a theater, two pools, four hot tubs, wellness center and spa, outdoor jogging track and more.
Additional details on the new ship, as well as on sale dates, will be announced in early 2018.