Get Away With Fran

January 15, 2010

SpongeBob and singles on NCL

Filed under: Cruise — Tags: , , , , — admin @ 10:48 am


SpongeBob and Dora the Explorer will be making regular appearances on the Norwegian Jewel, on cruises out of New York beginning in April, and on the soon-to-launch Norwegian Epic, on cruises in the Caribbean beginning in July. And that will no doubt come as great news to family cruisers; those with kids. (Actually, I can name an adult or two who would probably like to pose with the costumed characters as well.)

The appearances are part of a big partnership deal between Norwegian Cruise Line and Nickelodeon, the premier family entertainment brand. Look too for shipboard game shows like Slime Time Live! with, yes, opportunity to get slimed with the green stuff; live Nick performance shows; Nick-themed arts and crafts and games in the Kid’s Crew program, character breakfasts (for a fee) and more.

The announcement was made to press and 300 travel agents onboard the Norwegian Gem for lunch, while the ship was docked in New York, and there were hints the program could be expanded to other NCL ships as well.

But families aren’t the only cruising group NCL is hoping to draw in larger number with new offerings.

Epic studio

NCL also announced its block of interior cabins on Epic known as The Studios, would be marketed and priced for solo travelers. That means instead of paying double fare to occupy a cabin by yourself, those who “vant to be alone” can book one of The Studios cabins from $799 for a weeklong eastern or western Caribbean cruise. The cabins are tight, at 100 square feet, and all interior (no ocean views), but feature a very hip design that includes padded walls for leaning, a double bed, portholes into the hall and colored lighting that you can adjust to your mood – red for love, for instance.

Epic StudioLounge

The area is only accessible with a private keycard, and those in The Studios also get exclusive access to The Studio Lounge, a two-deck social spot with a bar, coffee service, plasma TVs, cushy seating and what’s expected to be a meet and mingle atmosphere (ie., singles hot spot).

December 17, 2009

“Ellen” audience goes cruise wild

Filed under: Cruise — Tags: , , , , , — admin @ 12:58 pm

Norwegian Cruise Line made a surprise appearance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” today with four ship officers in uniform giving every member of the studio audience – more than 300 people in all – a certificate for a seven-day cruise for two. Much screaming ensued when the giveaway was announced – you can watch the whole thing at

The episode was Day 11 of a “12 Days of Giveaways” series on the show.

“We are thrilled to present Ellen’s audience members with a cruise on one of our signature Freestyle Cruising vessels as part of our ‘Year of the Freestyle Vacation’ promotion,” said Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line’s chief executive officer.  “Ellen is one of the funniest, most engaging personalities on television today.”

DeGeneres introduced the prize by first announcing other prizes including an underwater digital camera. “You might be wondering why you are going to need all these things,” she said. After a canned plug for Freestyle cruising – “up to 20 dining options…” – she was hardly able to announce the cruise prize before the crowd went wild. A giant poster of the Norwegian Epic, NCL’s newest and largest ship, which debuts in July, was displayed onstage.

In conjunction with the “Ellen” appearance, and available to all, NCL has created a special deals page.

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