Three lines will base ships in Shang­hai next year

China Daily (USA) - - LIFE TRAVEL - By XULIN

Next year, some over­seas cruise com­pa­nies plan to in­tro­duce new­ships to China, re­in­forc­ing their long-term com­mit­ment to the mar­ket in the coun­try. The cruises will cater to the de­mands of the Chi­nese cus­tomers, who have be­come savvy about cruis­ing in re­cent years.

Here are three cruises that will home­port in Shang­hai in 2017, with voy­ages to Ja­pan and South Korea.

AIDA­bella

The Ger­man cruise ship AIDA­bella is op­er­ated by AIDACruises, which is owned by global cruise com­pany Costa, a com­pany within the Car­ni­val group.

“For sure we will keep its Ger­man her­itage on board. It’s life­style-ori­ented and will be well ac­cepted by fam­i­lies with multi-gen­er­a­tions,” says Felix Eich­horn, pres­i­dent of AIDA Cruises.

For many Chi­nese, “made in Ger­many” means high qual­ity and they now have the op­por­tu­nity to en­joy a pre­mium cruise ex­pe­ri­ence.

Guests can en­joy a Ger­man beer fes­ti­val at sea — taste dif­fer­ent Ger­man beers and watch tra­di­tional Bavar­ian per­for­mances. They can have bites of au­then­tic Ger­man dishes and Chi­nese cui­sine such as hot­pot, and buy well­known Ger­man brands in­clud­ing Ri­mowa in the du­tyfree shops.

Those who travel with chil­dren can have kids of dif­fer­ent ages looked af­ter by pro­fes­sion­als, and chil­dren can also play with their peers.

This year marks the 10th an­niver­sary of Costa’s en­try into the China mar­ket.

Ma­jes­tic Princess

Ma­jes­tic Princess will ar­rive at Shang­hai in July. It of­fers lively en­ter­tain­ment on board such as danc­ing. Fam­i­lies can watch two Las Ve­gasstyle pro­duc­tion shows that cost more than $6 mil­lion to pro­duce.

On­board guests will have a breath­tak­ing ex­pe­ri­ence by strolling on a glass-floored walk­way at sea, which it claims is the first one in China. They can also en­joy wine and have meals with a fan­tas­tic sea view.

Among its 20 restau­rants and bars, Har­mony serves clas­sic Can­tonese dishes. It’s cre­ated in part­ner­ship with chef Richard Chen, for­merly atWingLei Restau­rant, Wynn Las Ve­gas Re­sort, the first Chi­nese restau­rant in North Amer­ica that was awarded a Miche­lin star.

With an area of about 1,100 square me­ters, its duty-free shops boast luxury brands such as Cartier and Bul­gari.

“Many Chi­nese have a deep de­sire to travel the world. Cruis­ing is the eas­i­est way to have an in­ter­na­tional ex­pe­ri­ence on a short trip,” says Jan Swartz, pres­i­dent of Princess Cruises. The com­pany is owned by the global cruise com­pany Car­ni­val Cor­po­ra­tion & plc.

She says cruis­ing is like be­ing in a float­ing ho­tel: “It’s still great value com­pared with a land va­ca­tion.”

Wang Ping, vice-pres­i­dent and gen­eral man­ager of Car­ni­val China, at­tributes the line’s suc­cess to the boom­ing mar­ket and its un­der­stand­ing of the guests.

Ac­cord­ing to her, Western­ers just like to re­lax on board and sun­bathe, but Chi­nese guests want to broaden their hori­zon and im­prove them­selves via a trip.

“Our guests like to learn things, so we of­fer var­i­ous pro­gramssuchas cours­eson­cook­ing and Western din­ing man­ners. We also want to at­tract them to spend more days on a voy­age, so they can en­joy fa­cil­i­ties and ac­tiv­i­ties on board. ”

Nor­we­gian Joy

Nor­we­gian Joy will set out from Shang­hai in June. It can carry 3,850 guests.

Chi­nese artist Tan Ping de­signed its hull art­work — a color­ful phoenix. The myth­i­cal bird, which is said to be the ruler of all birds, is “aus­pi­cious” in Chi­nese cul­ture.

“We want to make a good first im­pres­sion with our best ship. As our first ship in China, it’s es­pe­cially de­signed for our Chi­nese guests,” says David J. Her­rera, pres­i­dent of Nor­we­gian Cruise Line Hold­ings China.

It will of­fer as many as 28 restau­rants and pubs on board, in­clud­ing a tea­house. Guests can have wide choices of din­ing ex­pe­ri­ences such as China’s re­gional cuisines and French and Ja­panese dishes.

“Food is es­sen­tial for any cruise line. In China, meals are more im­por­tant be­cause you send much time din­ing with fam­ily and friends. Of course we have to pri­or­i­tize that on our ship,” Her­rera says.

He says he en­joys the multi­gen­er­a­tion travel in China — fa­ther, mother, chil­dren and grand­par­ents.

“We need to at­tract ev­ery­one in the fam­ily,” he says. “Our ac­tiv­i­ties on board are ap­peal­ing to all of them.”

PRO­VIDED TO CHINA DAILY

Vis­i­tors en­joy their leisure on board a PrincessCruises ship.

PRO­VIDED TO CHINA DAILY

In­done­sia’s is­land of Bali has long been fa­vored by for­eign tourists.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.