This Week in Cruise: Strong Sales, Costa Magica, Princess to Yorktown

Cruise bookings continue to soar in early 2023, as unabated consumer demand continues. For example, Atlas Ocean Voyages reported strong European bookings last week. 

Built in 2004, Costa Magica has been purchased by a Greek high-speed ferry operator and renamed Mykonos Magic. Parent Carnival Corporation had previously indicated that it would be selling several Costa ships.

Princess Cruises announced that it will call, for the first time, at Yorktown, VA, within “Virginia's Historic Triangle.” Island Princess and Emerald Princess will call at the port in summer 2024. Guests will have the opportunity to explore seaside Yorktown, as well as Colonial Williamsburg and Jamestown

Elsewhere, cruise lines are starting up the 2023 season on North American rivers. American Cruise Lines has begun service on the Mississippi and its new San Francisco Bay and California rivers itinerary on American Jazz will start later this month.

Separately, this week Travel Agent is sailing the Mississippi River on American Queen VoyagesAmerican Queen with John Waggoner, founder and chairman, and Cindy D’Aoust, president. Separately, we recently spoke to D’Aoust about her plans and vision for the brand.  

In another major one-on-one interview, sister brand Luxury Travel Advisor today published a chat with Andrea DeMarco, the new president of Regent Seven Seas Cruises, about what travel advisors can expect from the brand going forward. 

Products and Destinations

On the product side, Princess introduced new boutique fitness experiences, and Atlas will introduce new Epicurean Adventures with special "Gastronomic Guests" sailing on select voyages between April and October 2023. Among the guests is well-known Chef Rudi Scholdis.

On the destination side, San Diego is a port increasingly popular with cruise lines, as evidenced by Holland America Line’s and Azamara’s previously announced Grand or World cruises. So, last week Travel Agent looked at a potpourri of "What's New in San Diego” for cruisers, including attractions, hotels, restaurants and exhibitions.

Tour operators continue to expand their offerings on cruise ships. Abercrombie & Kent gave a preview of its 2024-25 Luxury Expedition Cruises portfolio, which will comprise 17 cruises touching all seven continents. For example, a July 12, 2024, “North Pole Expedition Cruise: The Ultimate Frontier” will set sail on Ponant’s luxury icebreaker, Le Commandant Charcot.

As Wave Season continues, Scenic Cruises and Emerald Cruises, both part of Scenic Group, have a bonus offer through February 17, 2023. It provides a savings of an additional $500 per couple when booking select 2023 river or ocean cruises.

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