On Location: Holland America to Start Tours of Its Art Collections

ONBOARD THE MS WESTERDAM, SITKA, AK—Onboard Holland America's reward cruise for its top 100 producers, or Centurions, Travel Agent learned that the line plans to unveil museum-like tours of the art and antiques collections that adorn each of the fleet's ships by the end of 2006. Together, the collections are worth tens of millions of dollars. The MS Westerdam is the first ship in the fleet to have the tours. Cruisers simply sign out an iPod, and then listen to the 40-to-50 minute tour, which includes "walking directions, interviews with artists, background music and photo images displayed on the iPod screen to help guests locate each piece." The tours are free of charge. Travel Agent picked up the cruise for the second half of the journey Tuesday, and was on hand as Holland America Centurions enjoyed a complimentary whale watching excursion that took them around the scenic, tree-studded island archipelagos on the outskirts of the state capital, Juneau. A few humpback whales and a bald eagle made a brief appearance as Centurions looked on. Officials from the line have promised more news to come before the trip is over.

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