NO MODERN CRUISE LINE can match Cunard Line’s legacy at sea, dating back to 1840 and its trans-Atlantic steamboat days. Cunard operated the first passenger ship lit by electricity, the first with an indoor swimming pool and the first to offer an around-the-world voyage, in 1922. During World War II, its ocean liners transported more than 2 million service personnel, prompting Churchill to credit Cunard with shortening the war by a full year. Cunard was not only the first line to carry passengers on regularly scheduled trans-Atlantic passages, but today it is the only cruise line to do so.
Cunard’s crossings as well as its other voyages are distinguished by its traditional British cruising style, focusing on the elegance and mystique of ocean travel. Jackets are required even on informal nights. Professional librarians staff vast onboard libraries. Nannies attend to the kids. “Gentlemen Dance Hosts” abound. Cunard’s vessels are designed as ocean liners with Edwardian- and Victorian-inspired interiors, not as contemporary cruising ships. In keeping with the old-fashioned, more leisurely style, Cunard passengers can expect a lineup of renowned lecturers, Shakespearean actors, West End theatrical performers and a full scones-and-clotted-cream afternoon tea in the Queens Room, complete with Cunard’s renowned White Star service.
Cunard’s three ships, the Queen Victoria, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Mary 2, each carry slightly more than 2,000 passengers. The largest, Queen Mary 2, accommodates just half as many passengers as today’s mega-ships, but it is nearly as long and almost as heavy. That means there’s ample space for everything one would need on a trans-Atlantic or world cruise, from the world’s largest floating bookshop and library to the first full-scale planetarium at sea — not to mention the industry’s only pet lodgings, featuring two kennel masters, an exercise area and room service.
Cunard delivers a formal but leisurely luxury cruise experience, a rarity these days, but the line is introducing new itineraries in a push to expand its passenger base to include more Americans, Canadians and Australians. While Cunard has scheduled 22 seven-night trans-Atlantic cruises in 2018, the newly expanded Queen Elizabeth will be dispatched first to Australia and Japan for the cherry blossom season and then, for the summer of 2019, to Alaska, where Cunard has not ventured in more than 20 years. Meanwhile, passengers can book a special Voyage du Vin on the Queen Victoria departing June 1, 2018, for tastings of Iberian wines; A Journey of Genealogy trans-Atlantic crossing on the Queen Mary 2 Nov. 4, 2018, with Ancestry.com on board; or, if you’re quick, a Dec. 8, 2017, QM2 trans-Atlantic crossing with The New York Times’ puzzle editors celebrating the 75th anniversary of the NYT’s own version of the crossword puzzle.
United Airlines announces a number of new routes.
Lufthansa is starting an innovative new carbon offset program, Compensaid, which will allow customers to purchase CO2 neutral aviation fuels. The platform allows customers to replace the fossil fuel of their flights with sustainable aviation fuel.
The Luxury Collection again teamed with artist Sofía Sanchez de Beta to unveil an exclusive capsule collection, this time with 54 pieces inspired by the Arabian Desert and Emirati culture. The ready-to-wear line includes an array of separates created with Dubai’s climate in mind, such as lightweight blouses and tunics, flowing jumpsuits, long skirts and dresses.
Welcome to Rhodes, a medieval treasure beautifully preserved throughout the centuries. Rhodes is the capital of the Dodecanese, an island ideal not only for those who want to relax, but also for those looking for an action-packed holiday! With its bright green hills, rich green valleys and uninterrupted line of golden beaches, Rhodes is truly a blessed place. “The sun island” has more sunshiny days and milder temperatures throughout the year than any other location in Greece. It is, after all, one of the country’s easternmost places and among the first to welcome summer on its impressive beaches. Add in the excellent facilities for tourism, the island’s special blend of cosmopolitan and traditional, and numerous cultural and archaeological sites, the most important being the Medieval (Old) Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and you’ve got the perfect holiday destination. While on Rhodes, don’t miss a daytrip to nearby Sými. An island of sponge divers and seamen, Sými used to have 30,000 inhabitants before the Second World War and was the richest island in the Dodecanese, despite its small size. Today, Sými attracts many visitors thanks to its beautifully preserved Neo-Classical buildings and the famous Archangel Michael monastery at Panormitis.
Google announced last month it added additional features to its price comparison tool. The tool helps users plan trips and compare rates. The new features include one that shows whether the price of a planned flight plus accommodations is low, average or high.
Singapore Airlines launched its non-stop service between Singapore (SIN) and Seattle (SEA), Sept. 3. Seattle is Singapore Airlines’ fourth U.S. destination following Los Angeles (LAX), New York (EWR) and San Francisco (SFO) to receive non-stop service to and from Singapore.
For those without accessibility issues, going to the beach can be simple. There’s nothing to do but pack up your gear, head to the shore and walk out onto the sand. For those who may be inhibited, however, the beach poses more of a challenge.