This Week in Cruise: New Ships Amp Up Culinary Offerings

It’s been another busy week for new cruise ships, especially on the culinary front.

Celebrity Cruise Line showcased the dining experiences onboard the upcoming Celebrity Edge at a special preview event in New York City. The new ship will have four main dining venues, seven all-new specialty venues and 11 bars and lounges. One of the standout experiences is Le Petite Chef at the French Le Grand Bistro specialty restaurant. Held in the evenings, the one and a half hour experience will display a 4K projection in the table in which a tiny animated chef “prepares” each course on guests’ plates.

In other culinary news this week luxury line Seabourn announced the dining lineup for its upcoming Seabourn Ovation. The fifth vessel in Seabourn’s fleet, the new ship will have five restaurants, including one developed through the brand’s partnership with Michelin-starred chef Thomas Keller.

In other new cruise ship news, this week Hurtigruten reported that it has delayed the inaugural season of the Roald Amundsen until 2019 because the shipyard requires more time to complete the vessel. The ship had been originally slated for delivery this year. All guests affected by the cancellation will receive a full refund, including flight cancellation costs, the cruise line said. Additionally, they will be offered a number of discounts on alternative Hurtigruten expedition sailings.

This week Carnival Cruise Line’s newest ship, the Vista-class Carnival Horizon, got a godmother in the form of Queen Latifah. Latifah will participate in the ship’s official naming ceremony as well as a special “Lip Sync Battle: Horizon” showcase that is part of the line’s shipboard reproduction of the hit Paramount Network series. The event will be held during an invitation-only overnight gala onboard Carnival Horizon in New York City on May 23, 2018.

Fellow Carnival Corporation brand AIDA Cruises signed a contract for a third next-generation cruise ship this week, set for delivery in 2023. Like Carnival Corp.’s other next-gen ships, the new vessel will be fully powered by cleaner-burning liquefied natural gas (LNG). It will also have an estimated 2,700 staterooms and a number of other onboard features.

Finally, in river cruise news this week American Cruise Lines began construction on its second new riverboat, out of a planned five. Scheduled to debut in summer 2019, the ship will be a sibling vessel to the upcoming American Song.

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