AS CRUISE SHIPS BECOME LARGER, they also become greener. This movement to make cruising eco-friendly comes at a time when cruise ships draw fire for their negative effects on the environment. A typical cruise ship with 3,000 passengers aboard puts out 1 million gallons of gray water; 210,000 gallons of sewage; 25,000 gallons of oily bilge water; and 50 tons of garbage and solid waste on a 10-day voyage. By one estimate, a medium-sized ship emits the same volume of air pollutants as 5 million cars going the same distance. Air quality on deck can reach the same unhealthful level as that measured on the streets of the world’s most polluted cities.
No wonder cruise ships are making strides to become greener, even though they make up less than 1 percent of the world’s 50,000 commercial maritime vessels. A new generation of passenger ships (an estimated 87 new cruise vessels come on line by 2026) will add the latest in eco-technology, and current fleets, from engine room to stateroom, are becoming far less polluting than ever before.
Holland America Line is among the leaders in securing a green card for cruising. An environmental officer sails aboard every vessel, and the staff is eco-educated. Two systems are in place to treat bilge water; towels are reused; bathrooms are equipped with low-flow faucets and showerheads; cleaning supplies are nontoxic; cabin windows are tinted to curb the use of air-conditioning; silicon paint on the hulls reduces drag; and, where provided, ships plug into less-polluting power stations when in port. Holland America also installed special computer programs to help prevent collisions with whales.
Likewise, Celebrity Cruises crushes glass; recycles aluminum and tin; and on the 2,852-passenger Solstice, 216 solar panels and 7,000 LED lights cut energy demands in half. Disney Cruise Line recycles 280 tons of water from its air-conditioning system to do laundry and swab the decks. Royal Caribbean Cruises eliminated disposable utensils, excess packaging and plastic water bottles. Lindblad Expeditions, a leader in small ship eco-touring, supplies its dining rooms with locally sourced, sustainably harvested seafood. Carnival Cruise Line installed recycling bins and sends its replaced furniture, appliances and linens to charities rather than landfills. And for its cruises in Africa on the Zambezi Queen, AmaWaterways relies on battery power at night, with hot water provided by a solar heating system.
The future looks even greener. Eco-minded passengers who drive hybrid vehicles on land will soon be able to vacation at sea on hybrid cruise ships. Hurtigruten’s newest vessel, the 530-passenger Roald Amundsen, will be the first of its kind powered by fully electric hybrid technology, promising periods of completely emission-free sailing. And Ponant promised to put the world’s first electric hybrid-powered icebreaker cruise ship into operation in 2021.
New Orleans has a full roster of activities, events and festivals enticing guests throughout February and March.
IHG® Business Edge: Working Together with SMEs for a smarter way to manage travel
With Black History Month and Women’s History Month right around the corner, it’s time to highlight and recognize South African women working hard to make the travel industry better.
Since Cheval Blanc, an extraordinary, newly designed and refurbished 72-room hotel owned by Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessey, launched in September 2021, it has been the talk of the town. Le Tout-Paris remarks about its WOW factor … and the hard-to-get reservations for the 30 seats at Plenitude, the intimate, first-floor gastronomic outlet headed by chef Arnaud Donckele, who earned three Michelin stars at Cheval Blanc Saint Tropez. Reservations are also recommended for Limbar, the ground-floor bakery/café/tea shop/bar where we watched Pastry Chef Maxime Frédéric preparing desserts and an absolute must-have for dinner at Le Tout-Paris, the 7th-floor, all-day brasserie. This brightly colored space, with its raised seating and Fauve-like floor tiles and the adjacent Milanese restaurant, Langosteria, both have access to terraces facing the Seine River, with amazing views encompassing Notre Dame to the Eiffel Tower.
Located in the South Pacific, The Islands of Tahiti are just eight hours by air from California. Surrounded by pristine, crystal-clear blue waters, the 118 islands and atolls offer natural beauty, authentic island culture and unique French Polynesian style. The Islands of Tahiti are world-renowned for white-sand beaches, stunning turquoise lagoons and varied landscapes ranging from coral atolls to volcanic mountain peaks. Privacy comes naturally in The Islands of Tahiti and offers visitors the space to relax and reconnect and to be Embraced By Mana. Mana is the life force and spirit that connects all things in The Islands of Tahiti.
Nevada-based The Spa at Green Valley by Well & Being and The Spa at Red Rock by Well & Being celebrate the start of 2022 with new health, wellness and spa treatments available through March 31. Both spas offer an array of treatments for guests wanting to relax and unwind before 2022 kicks into full gear.
Now through Jan. 28, JEOPARDY! and Lindblad Expeditions team up for a viewer promotion, the JEOPARDY! Explore Alaska Sweepstakes. The contest will award 10 winners and their guests with an eight-day, small-ship cruise of Alaska’s coastal wilderness.
Go ahead, take a nice, deep breath. Because a Seabourn voyage is all about this moment you’ve come so far in life to embrace. It’s not an escape, it’s an arrival.
It’s time to start dreaming of your next trip. Here’s some destination inspiration for you. Take a visual journey through Santorini, Greece, with us.