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    Abu Dhabi, Dubai, regional maritime tourism authorities form ‘Cruise Arabia’ alliance

    The maritime and tourism authorities of Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Bahrain and Oman have formalised the Cruise Arabia alliance. This regional partnership will promote the Arabian Gulf as a global cruise ship destination.Dubai Department for Economy and Tourism (DET) announced on Friday that an official Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by the stakeholders at the Internationale Tourismus-Börse Berlin (ITB Berlin) travel trade convention.
    According to DET, the key objectives of the Cruise Arabia alliance include collaboration to enhance the cruise experience for passengers, attract more cruise liners to the region, improve port infrastructure, and drive economic growth in the regional cruise tourism sector.
    Issam Kazim, CEO of Dubai Corporation for Tourism & Commerce Marketing (DCTCM), said, “The growth of our cruise tourism has been largely shaped by the continuous support of our stakeholders and partners. This alliance will result in more cruise operators seeking to anchor in Dubai, capitalising on its strategic location and promoting the city’s diverse offerings, world-class infrastructure and superior air and sea connectivity.”

    Dubai is home to two world-class cruise ports, Mina Rashid (Port Rashid) and Dubai Harbour, which simultaneously accommodate nine mega-cruise vessels. Dubai’s 2023-2024 winter cruise season was launched on October 28, 2023, with the arrival of the luxury liner Mein Schiff 2, which docked at the Hamdan bin Mohammed Cruise Terminal at Mina Rashid.ADVERTISEMENTSource:
    Meanwhile, Dubai Harbour Cruise Terminal welcomed 300,000 passengers in the 2022-2023 cruise season, roughly four times the number from its debut season, with a 40 per cent increase in ship calls.

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    Luxury travel company andBeyond has announced the extension of its South America portfolio

    Conservation-led luxury travel company andBeyond has announced the extension of its South America portfolio with the launch of an expedition yacht in the Galapagos Islands. Named the andBeyond Galapagos Explorer, the 38 m (124 ft) yacht will operate on two 7-night routes in the east and west of the famed Galapagos Islands. Boasting just six suites and cabins, the yacht will cater for a maximum of 12 guests, with two expert guides present on each departure.“A uniquely biodiverse environment with the highest number of endemic species in the world, the Galapagos is a natural choice for the further expansion of our portfolio in South America. We are absolutely thrilled to finally have the opportunity to bring our brand of responsible tourism to this precious part of the world, which the Ecuadorian government has protected from over-tourism by strictly limiting the number of operating licences issued,” says andBeyond Executive Chairman & CEO, Joss Kent.
    “We have long believed that the best way to encourage our guests to help protect the world’s wild places is for our skilled guides to help travellers not only fall in love with those places, but also to gain an understanding of the threats that they are facing. This is what we are aiming to do through the introduction of our luxury yacht, where two knowledgeable guides will host just twelve guests, showcasing the wonder and mystery of this exceptional destination.”
    With only 12 guests on board, the elevated guest-to-staff ratio makes the Galapagos Explorer the most exclusive yacht operating in the islands. In addition to the highest level of guiding, the vessel will also offer beautifully appointed spacious indoor and outdoor guest areas, as well as four exquisite cabins and two luxury suites. Currently undergoing an extensive refurbishment of its interiors, the andBeyond Galapagos Explorer will set sail on its first departure on 17 June 2024.
    Situated on the equator, the Galapagos consists of 18 main islands, three smaller islands, and 107 rocks and islets. Designated a World Heritage Site in 1878, the islands are home to a remarkable variety of flora and fauna, with many species found nowhere else on earth. Notable species include the Galapagos giant tortoise, marine iguana, and blue-footed booby. The islands also feature unique geographical features, and each has created a distinct ecosystem of its own, with strict conservation measures in place to preserve the delicate balance. The Charles Darwin Research Centre, located on Santa Cruz Island, focuses on conservation efforts and conducts scientific research to protect the rare biodiversity of the islands. ​
    Operating on two different 7-night itineraries, the andBeyond Galapagos Explorer will offer the choice of discovering the east or the west of the main cluster of islands, while including the highlights of the destination in both. Highlights of the eastern itinerary include the magnificent formation of Kicker Rock, located just off San Cristóbal Island, as well as sightings of the critically endangered waved albatross in Gardner Bay on Española Island. The western Itinerary features highlights that include exploring the geographical centre of the Galapagos Islands, Sombrero Chino Island as well as close encounters with the rare Santa Fe land iguana on Santa Fe Island.ADVERTISEMENTBoth itineraries present plenty of opportunities for land and sea adventures such as snorkelling, hiking and birdwatching, as well as a plethora of unique and interesting land, air and marine species. Rates for both itineraries begin from USD 10 950 per person sharing per 7-night cruise. 
    In keeping with its stated mission to leave our world a better place, andBeyond will apply its ethos of Care of Land, People and Wildlife to its new base of operations. The company plans to extend its Oceans Without Border initiative into the area and hopes to be able to review and implement projects that support the Galapagos’ incredible land and wildlife. Furthermore, in line with its dedication to community development, it also aims to train and upskill local residents, as well as to highlight local procurement opportunities.
    For more information or to book, log on to or contact your preferred travel provider.

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    Conservation-led luxury travel company andBeyond has partnered with Quark Expeditions to expand their operations to a fourth continent. Together, the partners have created A Taste of the Wild Life; A Masterclass with Kris Tompkins. Brought to you by andBeyond and Quark Expeditions, with Kris Tompkins, the 18-night land and sea adventure gives travellers an intimate glimpse into what is being done to protect the exceptional landscapes and wildlife inhabitants of Chile and Argentina, as well as the Antarctic Circle. The trip also offers an opportunity to gain first-person insight into the events described in the documentary A Wild Life, which tells the story of Kris and Douglas Tompkins and the contributions that they have made towards nature conservation in South America.The trip will be accompanied by Kristine (Kris) McDivitt Tompkins, president and co-founder of Tompkins Conservation, an American conservationist, and former CEO of Patagonia, Inc. Kris and her late husband Douglas Tompkins have protected approximately 14.8 million acres of parklands in Chile and Argentina through Tompkins Conservation and its partners, making them among the most successful national park-orientated philanthropists in history. Throughout the trip, Kris will share personal stories of the work that has gone into protecting and rewilding large swathes of the Patagonian wilderness. These will include a presentation on the efforts involved in the creation of a national park. There will also be a screening of the Wild Life documentary, followed by a Q&A session with Kris on her story.
    “We are thrilled to be working closely with other organisations that reflect our own values,” says Pedro Barraza, &Beyond Managing Director South America. “&Beyond has a long-standing relationship with Kris Tompkins and her teams, with our conservation experts from Africa having provided advice and support to both Rewilding Chile and Rewilding Argentina in preparation for their wildlife reintroduction projects. We also relish the opportunity to partner with Quark Expeditions, whose Polar Promise principles reflect our own motto of Care of Land, Wildlife and People.”
    “This new partnership aligns perfectly with our commitment to go responsibly in all that we do,” says Thomas Lennartz, Vice President of Sales and Client Experience at Quark Expeditions. “We look forward to working with &Beyond to deliver awe-inspiring guest experiences in Patagonia and Antarctica, and Kris Tompkins’ expertise will be an incredible complement to the best expedition team in the industry.”
    The Masterclass itinerary kicks off in Chilean Patagonia at the Torres del Paine National Park, where travellers will immerse themselves in the work being done by the Cerro Guido Foundation to reintroduce and protect Chile’s most endangered species. Staying at the historic Estancia Cerra Guido, guests can not only learn the way of the land from local gaucho, who care for the farm’s livestock, but will have the unique opportunity for a first-hand glimpse of the conservation work being done to preserve the area’s rich flora and fauna. Accompanied by expert puma researchers and trackers, they will immerse themselves in activities that form part of this groundbreaking project.
    Those keen to learn more about the surrounding landscapes can also opt for a scenic overland excursion through Torres del Paine. Those in search of more physical activity can explore the region on horseback or spend the day fishing, while history buffs will enjoy the opportunity to tour an authentic Patagonian ranch, discovering ways of life and traditions that go back hundreds of years.ADVERTISEMENTLeaving Patagonia, the itinerary continues to Cabo Froward (Cape Froward), where travellers can explore the mountains, glaciers and forest of this exceptional landscape, as well as enjoy a taste of the rich and vibrant culture of Punta Arenas. Travelling on to Ushuaia, the erstwhile explorers are introduced to the Ultramarine, a vessel specifically built for exploration of the polar regions. Departing via the Beagle Channel, travellers will have the opportunity to photograph the area’s beautiful landscapes and sea birds before heading into the vastness of the Southern Ocean. Over the next three days there is plenty of opportunity to enjoy the facilities offered by the ship and join in captivating presentations on photography, wildlife, glaciology and history. Explorers can while away the time by planning which of the included activities they would prefer to try first, from sightseeing from a scenic flight above the vessel to Zodiac cruises, hiking among some of the world’s most untouched landscapes, sea kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding and more.
    As guests finally come close to landfall on the Antarctic Peninsula, Zodiac boats will whisk them away to explore majestic bays and channels, exploring penguin rookeries, scanning the horizon for humpback and minke whale, or keeping an eye out for leopard seals. Travellers can select from a vast array of additional adventures, all under the oversight of the dedicated Expedition Team, and drink in the magic that surrounds them, from crackling iceberg and glaciers to isolated research stations and vast, pristine expanses. Should conditions be conducive, the group will cross the Antarctic Circle and witness the midnight sun casting its ethereal glow on the icy landscape.
    Heading back across the Drake Passage, guests will enjoy some time to reflect on their once-in-a-lifetime experiences and on the new understanding of this largely unknown and unexplored region. There will also be plenty of opportunity to listen to more enthralling stories shared by Kris and the Expedition Team on board the vessel.    A Taste of the Wild Life: A Masterclass with Kris Tompkins runs from 25 February to 15 March 2025, and is available at a cost of USD 34,400 per person sharing with a minimum of 8 guests and with a maximum of 14 guests. The itinerary cost includes a group contribution of USD 10,000 made in support of the Tompkins Conservation Project Fund at Re:Wild. For more information visit or speak to your preferred travel provider.

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    Holland America Line Enhances Alaska Cruisetours with McKinley Chalet Resort Room Upgrades

    Holland America Line is elevating its award-winning Alaska Cruisetours in time for the 2024 season with room upgrades at McKinley Chalet Resort and a new, included tour in Dawson City, Yukon. Alaska Cruisetours combine an Alaska cruise with an overland tour to Denali, and Holland America Line is the only cruise line that extends those tours into the Yukon.Balconies will be added to 28 river-view rooms at McKinley Chalet Resort — Holland America Line’s hotel property at Denali National Park — upgrading them to the Denali Suite category. In addition, a new Deluxe category of non-balcony rooms with suite amenities is being introduced. For the excursions, guests on select Denali and Yukon Cruisetours will have a new “Klondike Gold Tour” that expands on the region’s famed gold rush experience. The tour visits the original discovery claim site that launched the gold rush and Gold Dredge 4.
    “We are consistently evolving our Alaska Cruisetour product by adding new amenities that will enhance the overall experience and opportunities to learn more about the destination,” said Dan Rough, Holland America Line’s vice president of revenue management. “Increasing the balcony rooms at McKinley Chalet Resort offers even more visitors the opportunity to take in the incredible views, and adding the Deluxe category allows additional guests to have an elevated stay at the property.”
    New Balcony Suites and Deluxe Rooms Added at McKinley Chalet ResortHolland America Line’s McKinley Chalet Resort, nestled at the entrance of Denali National Park, is adding balconies to 28 existing river-view rooms. The property will now offer 84 Denali Suites — giving more guests stunning balcony views of Denali National Park or the Nenana River. Holland America Line also will upgrade 45 non-balcony rooms to feature all the suite amenities, creating a new Deluxe room category. 
    Special Deluxe and Suite amenities include a s’more kit to enjoy at Denali Square, Pendleton blankets, premium bathrobes and a Keurig coffee machine. Standard rooms are included in the Alaska Cruisetour fare, and Deluxe and Suite room upgrades are available to book for an additional fee.
    New ‘Klondike Gold Tour’ Included at Dawson CityThe new Klondike Gold Tour is complimentary for all guests on select Alaska Denali and Yukon Cruisetours that include Dawson City. Guests will visit the Discovery Claim National Historic Site that started the Klondike Gold Rush and enjoy time at Gold Dredge 4, a preserved wooden-hulled dredge once used to mine gold in the Klondike River Valley. A Parks Canada guide shares the history of gold dredging in the area and about the first discovery of gold in the Yukon.ADVERTISEMENT“The Yukon Territory is where the Klondike Gold Rush began, and we’re excited to include this new tour to Gold Dredge 4 that will give our guests a first-hand encounter with an important part of North American history and in-depth insight into this era,” added Rough. “Holland America Line is the only cruise line that shows the beginning and end of the Klondike trail, from Skagway all the way to the Yukon.”
    Guests can delve deeper into the Klondike Gold Rush on an Alaska cruise or Cruisetour on additional shore excursions in Skagway, including visiting the Gold Rush Training Camp and panning for gold, taking the White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad to Liarsville Gold Camp, and visiting the Gold Rush Cemetery and Historic Skagway Inn (the largest brothel in Skagway during the gold rush era).
    Highlights of 2024 Yukon and Denali Cruisetours:
    Holland America Line is the only cruise line to offer an Alaska cruise combined with an overland tour to Denali and the Yukon.Yukon and Denali Cruisetours range from nine to 18 days and include either a three- or four-day Inside Passage cruise on Koningsdam or Zaandam, or a seven-day Glacier Discovery cruise on Nieuw Amsterdam or Noordam; a two-or three-night stay at Denali; a journey into the Yukon and additional city visits.Yukon and Denali Cruisetours feature one or two nights in Dawson City, affording guests more time to relive gold rush history.Highlights of 2024 Alaska Cruisetours
    Nieuw Amsterdam and Noordam offer Denali Cruisetours from nine to 14 days.All Denali Cruisetours include a seven-day Glacier Discovery cruise featuring Glacier Bay, plus either College Fjord or Hubbard Glacier (depending on the direction), Inside Passage, up to three nights at McKinley Chalet Resort, and additional city visits.McKinley Chalet Resort and Denali SquareEvery Cruisetour includes a stay at the McKinley Chalet Resort at the entrance to Denali National Park. The property is Holland America Line’s 68-acre hotel on the Nenana River. The resort features a reception hall, dining facilities and guest rooms.
    Centrally located between the McKinley Chalet Resort and riverfront guest rooms, Denali Square is a gathering area with restaurants, an amphitheater, fire pits for keeping warm or making s’mores, outdoor seating, retail shops offering local goods and more. Walking paths in and around Denali Square show off the property’s mountainous landscapes and beautiful setting.
    For more information about Holland America Line, consult a travel advisor, call 1-877-SAIL HAL (877-724-5425) or visit

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    Luxury Cruise Expert Mundy Cruising Launches The Ultimate Luxury Cruise: 105 Days From £239,999 PP

    Luxury cruise expert Mundy Cruising has launched an extraordinary programme, The Ultimate Luxury Cruise, which combines iconic destinations, amazing travel experiences and superlative accommodations to create a 105-day journey, departing Tokyo on 14th April 2025 and finishing in Dubrovnik on 26th July 2025.Customer research at the top end of the market by Mundy Cruising has revealed a range of travel trends and priorities for its discerning client base, including longer trips, slow travel, iconic experiences, bucket list destinations and a desire to return to gentler (and arguably Pre-Covid) times.
    Above all, these would-be travellers have stressed how important it is that these key needs are fulfilled in the most exclusive and luxurious way possible. Or, as one respondent answered in the research, “It ain’t what you do, it’s the way that you do it”.
    “I remember that song from over 40 years ago,” said Edwina Lonsdale, Managing Director of Mundy Cruising. “And, as the leaders in luxury cruising in the UK, we could hardly disagree. Why not, we thought, create a cruise which allows people to visit some on the best places on the planet, on some of the very best ships, and in the absolutely very best suites available on those ships?”
    The journey includes a plethora of bucket list destinations and experiences including Cherry Blossom in Japan, Hot Springs and Snow Monkeys, cruising Glacier Bay National Park, viewing black and brown bears, crossing the Rockies on the magical Rocky Mountaineer train, living the high life in New York, a leisurely transatlantic crossing, voyaging northwards for the Norwegian Fjords, Midnight Sun and North Cape, crossing Europe in style on the magical Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, exploring Venice, cruising the Adriatic coast to Athens, and exploring the Greek Islands and Montenegro on an exclusive 32-guest sailing yacht.
    Every step of the way, each experience offers the ultimate in luxury, combining the top suites on the very best ships in the world, First and Business Class air travel, classic rail journeys and beautiful hotels. ADVERTISEMENTAlex Loizou, Director of Sales, Marketing and Operations at Mundy Cruising, said: “Our clients are looking to indulge themselves in a gentler way. Covid gave them a sense of urgency, with plenty of items on their ‘to do’ lists, but despite that urgency, they are not prepared to compromise. In response, we created this amazing journey as an example of the many bespoke travel experiences we take pleasure in curating.”
    Mundy Cruising’s Ultimate Luxury Cruise includes:
    Spring in Tokyo: Regent Suite on Regent’s Seven Seas Explorer: 12th April 2025
    First Class flight to Tokyo, and 12-day Japan cruise during the country’s beautiful cherry blossom season visiting enchanting temples in Kyoto, taking a sombre history lesson in Nagasaki and discovering vibrant Tokyo.
    The Regent Suite, at over 3,000 square feet – larger than most people’s home, features rare works of art, an in-suite spa retreat and Steinway piano, with a spectacular ocean view from private balconies that include a Tresse Minipool high atop the ship. 
    Japan and Alaska: Grand Wintergarden Suite on Seabourn Cruises’ Seabourn Quest: 27th April 2025
    Embark Seabourn Quest to explore more of Japan’s treasures, including Hakodate’s famous hot springs and snow monkeys, before voyaging on to Alaska. Here, highlights include visiting the National Monument of Glacier Bay and the chance to spot black and brown bears, wolves, moose, eagles, seals and whales among the wild Alaskan landscape, finishing in cosmopolitan Vancouver.
    The Grand Wintergarden Suite, with its spacious terraces and glass-enclosed solarium with tub and daybed, is perfect for a cool weather cruise with stunning scenery. With 1,402 square feet of space, there is plenty of space for entertaining. 
    Canada: Rocky Mountaineer GoldLeaf Rail Journey: 16th May 2025
    Enjoy two nights in cosmopolitan Vancouver, before taking to the rails. The epic Rocky Mountaineer train ride goes through some of western Canada’s most striking scenery, enjoyed with GoldLeaf service: three-course wine-paired gourmet fine dining, domed windows and an outdoor viewing platform. Stay in Fairmont’s most luxurious accommodations – the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge and Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel – as you tour the area.
    North America: Owner’s Suite on Silversea’s Silver Dawn:  28th May 2025
    Fly to New York, and board Silversea’s beautiful Silver Dawn for a transatlantic voyage including vibrant Boston and the wild and rugged coastlines of Atlantic Canada, ending on home shores in Southampton via Falmouth, Guernsey’s St Peter Port and Saint Malo in France.
    The Owner’s Suite, at 1,389 square feet, is the perfect home from home, with a butler to take care of your every need, and a large seating area as the hub of the suite, equipped with all mod cons – think a Bose sound system, an interactive 55” TV and an Illy coffee machine. 
    Norwegian Fjords: Owner’s Suite on Seabourn Cruises’ Seabourn Sojourn:  14th June 2025
    Board Seabourn Sojourn in Dover for a bucket-list adventure to Norway’s North Cape and Norwegian Fjords. Highlights include the dramatic peaks of the Lofoten Islands, crossing the Arctic Circle in Tromso and traversing the shores of Norway’s most spectacular fjords.
    The Owner’s Suite on Seabourn Sojurn, at 672 square feet, has forward facing windows perfect for the breathtaking views on this spectacular itinerary, which is all about the scenery. 
    Paris to Venice: Grand Suite on Venice Simplon-Orient-Express: 28th June 2025
    Take two days to explore the world’s most romantic city, Paris, then join an iconic journey on the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, a return to the bygone era of travel in the Art Deco 1920s carriages from Paris to Venice.
    The famous Grand Suites inspired by Paris, Venice, Istanbul, Vienna, Prague, and Budapest are adorned with hand-crafted furnishings from dark wood and embossed leather to delicate silk, with private in-cabin dining, 24-hour butler service and spacious, marble-adorned en-suite bathrooms.
    Adriatic Sea: Owner’s Suite on Silversea’s Silver Spirit: 2nd July 2025
    Depart Venice to visit mosaic-adorned Ravenna before a relaxing journey to Croatia’s most-loved islands and their hidden coves, with crystal-clear waters and spectacular red-roofed towns, including lovely Zadar and fairytale-like Rovinj.
    The Owner’s Suite, with up to 1,668 square feet of space, is a stylish apartment with spacious living room, enormous veranda, Italian marbled bathroom and afternoon canapé and champagne service.
    Return to Venice for another three days to explore, retiring each evening to one of the city’s most luxurious hotels.
    Greece and Croatia: Owner’s Residence on Explora Journeys’ Explora I:  12th July 2025
    Cruise the Adriatic to the Peloponnese, visiting the enchanting walled city of Dubrovnik and iconic Athens.
    The Owner’s Residence is the largest living space on the ship, with over 3,000 square feet of space, and spans the vessel’s full width with an infinity whirlpool on the private terrace, and spacious interior finished to the highest standards with plenty of welcome extras such as a welcome bottle of Dom Perignon 2013. 
    Island Hopping in the Mediterranean: Owner’s Suite on Ponant’s Le Ponant:  19th July 2025
    The yacht-like, 32-guest Le Ponant sets forth on an island-hopping adventure in Greece and Montenegro, sailing from the unspoilt Greek islands of Pylos and Spetses to Montenegro’s stunning Kotor and Tivat, something very exclusive to end the extraordinary journey. It would be possible to charter to whole vessel to complete the odyssey in style in the company of close friends.
    The Owner’s Suite, an ultra-modern delight of 505 square feet, includes indulgent spa treatments on this little gem of a yacht.
    Disembark in Dubrovnik for a short flight back to London on 26th July 2025.
    Prices for this 105-day Ultimate Luxury Cruise itinerary start from £239,999 per person including Business and First Class flights, all overseas transfers, five-star hotels throughout and all cruises featured.
    For more information and reservations, call 020 7399 7670 or visit

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    Transformative Plan Unveiled to Save America’s Flagship, The SS United States

    The SS United States, America’s Flagship, could return home to New York as a transformative economic development project unveiled today by the SS United States Conservancy, the owner of the famed vessel.The plan, developed in conjunction with two prominent New York firms, RXR and MCR Hotels, would repurpose the legendary ocean liner as a unique, mixed-use destination, including a 1,000 key hotel, numerous food and beverage destinations, multiple event venues, acres of public green space, and a world-class museum. The project could be a capstone to a decades-long effort to protect and revitalize the Hudson River waterfront, create thousands of new jobs, and generate millions in tax revenue annually.
    During her storied service career, the SS United States smashed the transatlantic speed record in 1952 using only two-thirds of her power, a record that has never been broken. From her Hudson River berth, she carried more than one million passengers, from celebrities and royalty to immigrants and tourists. She was also a top-secret convertible troop transport that could rush 14,000 troops 10,000 miles without refueling.
    The release of a redevelopment plan comes at a time when the SS United States is in peril. The ship faces possible eviction from her current pier in Philadelphia. The vessel’s landlord doubled the Conservancy’s rent without notice during the coronavirus pandemic, placing significant financial strain on the organization. The Conservancy is presently in litigation on the matter, with a trial date slated for early December.
    The conceptual plan for a privately funded, commercial redevelopment identified Manhattan’s Hudson River as the optimal “home port” for the vessel, due to its proximity to transportation and pedestrian access to the Javits Convention Center. The project would entail the redesign and reconstruction of adjacent piers, which would create acres of new public green space aboard the vessel and adjoining areas. The ship’s transformative potential is not restricted to New York. Other locations and port cities could benefit from the ship’s commercial revitalization and iconic status.
    RXR and MCR developed full schematic design drawings, extensive engineering and construction feasibility diligence in consultation with U.S. shipyards, a financial analysis to demonstrate the project’s commercial viability, and an assessment of the permitting and regulatory requirements to advance the redevelopment program. The project diligence team included Gibbs & Cox, the vessel’s original design firm, Perkins Eastman and HLW architects, and local land use and regulatory counsel.ADVERTISEMENTThe overall program was informed by MCR and RXR’s extensive experience redeveloping iconic, historic properties in New York, including Eero Saarinen’s landmark 1962 TWA Flight Center and hotel at JFK Airport as well as Manhattan’s historic Pier 57.
    The Conservancy is now seeking state and local interest from New York or other potential cities to advance its plan at a host pier location. The nonprofit organization and its development team are prepared to donate the ship and the design and engineering work completed to date to expedite progress in securing a prime location for the vessel’s revitalization.
    “The SS United States symbolizes the nation’s ambition and innovation. Our development partners have embraced the patriotic and economic significance of this monumental project. Through their extensive due diligence, they have created a bold and exciting plan that preserves the ship’s history and activates the vessel’s commercial potential,” said Susan Gibbs, president of the SS United States Conservancy, the national nonprofit organization that has worked tirelessly to save it for more than a decade.
    The ship was once a global ambassador of her namesake nation, and her red, white, and blue funnels were a source of pride and inspiration following the devastation of WWII. Although the Jet Age silenced her engines in 1969, the SS United States continues to represent an inspiring synthesis of post-war technological innovation, mid-century modern design, as well as the nation’s enduring ambition, resilience, and optimism.
    “The Conservancy’s partners and passionate supporters from across the country and around the world have created a viable path forward to save the SS United States,” added Gibbs, the granddaughter of the ship’s original designer. “But we are quickly running out of time. We know this can be a viable, transformative project. Let’s rally together to secure a home for America’s Flagship.”

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    Level Up Your Summer Holiday With These Unforgettable Beach Activities in Northern France

    Northern France is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in all of Europe – the perfect destination for a summer holiday with the family. DFDS have picked out some fun and unusual activities at some of the best beaches along France’s northern coastline to make your summer escape a holiday to remember.
    Dig for fossils at Cap Gris-Nez and Villers-sur-Mer
    Much like the south coast of England just across the Channel, the north coast of France has some fantastic places to uncover fossils, perhaps most notably the beach below Cap Gris-Nez in the Hauts-de-France region and the cliffs surrounding Villers-sur-Mer in Normandy.
    Cap Gris-Nez is the closest point between France and England, and on a clear day you can easily see all the way across the Channel to the White Cliffs of Dover. It has been a historically and strategically important site for hundreds of years – Henry VIII had a fortress built here, the ruins of which can still be seen, and during the Nazi occupation of France the German army built numerous fortifications on the cliffs as part of the Atlantic Wall defences. The beach below is a haven for fossil hunters – ammonites, fossilised wood and even shark teeth have been discovered here, so bring your hammers and brushes and explore the beach for some fossils!
    The coastline around Villers-sur-Mer has been a palaeontologist’s paradise for over a hundred years, and you only have to notice the giant bush sculpture of a dinosaur in the town centre to realise how popular it is with fossil hunters. The cliffs here, known as Les Vaches Noires, have revealed more than their fair share of fossils to amateur and professional fossil hunters over the years, and it still calls adventurous excavators from around the world to its cliffs and rocky shores. The cliffs are rich in marine fossils, as the area was once part of a shallow tropical sea, and ammonites, shells and coral can be found among the fossils – even larger creatures like plesiosaurs and ichthyosaurs have been discovered here! The nearby Paleospace Museum hold some of the finds that have been discovered in the area, and guides from the museum take groups of visitors out onto the beach to teach them about the fossils and how to find them.ADVERTISEMENTWhen fossil hunting in France, make sure you stay safe and follow any rules and laws in place to protect yourself, the cliffs, and the fossils themselves.
    See the seals in the Baie de Somme
    The Baie de Somme is home to the largest seal colony in France, with two species found in the area – the grey seal and the common (or harbour) seal. Other large marine wildlife, including dolphins, porpoises and even whales have also been spotted nearby.
    While the seals can be found in many locations in the Baie de Somme and along the northern French coast, the Pointe du Hourdel is one of the best places to observe them in all of France, as it is home to the country’s largest seal colony. They can usually be found relaxing on the sandy beaches in the area or hunting for fish in the sea.
    The seals can be seen all year round, in all weathers and at high and low tide, so whenever you visit you are more than likely to see them. Common seals give birth in the late spring/summer and grey seals in the late autumn/winter so you may also see the adorable seal pups if you time your visit well.
    Visitors are advised not to get too close to the seals, but a guide can accompany you, either on land or by kayak, if you wish to get a better view and learn more about these delightful animals and the important conservation work being done to protect them.
    Paddleboard through rock arches in Etretat
    The magnificent and much-famed cliffs at Etretat have inspired artists and writers for centuries, brought here by the spectacular coastal landscape and its brilliant white cliffs. Guy de Maupassant and Claude Monet were frequent visitors, and the town is proud of its connection to these two pillars of French art and culture.
    This dramatic coastline also provides the perfect backdrop for paddleboarding. Children and adults of all ages can take part on a guided tour along the chalk cliffs and underneath the iconic arches for a unique way to see the cliffs and get closer than most to these beautiful natural rock formations.
    After a safety briefing and a short lesson in paddleboarding technique, you hit the water and make your way along the coast – an experience that you’ll never forget! As you pass beneath the cliffs, round the rock formations and under the arches, your guide will teach you about the history and culture of Etretat and its famous cliffs – tradition states that you should close your eyes and make a wish as you pass beneath the Porte d’Aval!
    Horse Riding in Le Touquet
    What could be more exhilarating than horseback riding along a beautiful stretch of white sandy beach and really connecting with nature? In the chic and elegant resort of Le Touquet, people of all ages and experiences can enjoy a gentle walk along the beach, accompanied by an experienced instructor from the prestigious Le Touquet Equestrian Centre. Absolute beginners and those with little previous equestrian experience are more than welcome to join the Discovery Walk, which takes you on a route through the enchanting forest before opening up onto sand dunes that offer unforgettable views across the Bay de Canche.
    During the summer holidays more confident riders can take part in more advanced experiences that give you the opportunity to take your horse on a faster trot or a more rigorous gallop (provided you have the right accreditation and licenses), so you can enjoy a truly magical experience racing along the beach at sunset – a unique experience you won’t want to miss out on.
    For younger children who want to try horseback riding for the first time or who might prefer a gentler pace, a ride-in-hand experience is available for children between 2 and 10. Kids will have the chance to take their first ride on a horse, learn how to approach and pet the animal safely, and perhaps foster a lifelong passion for horses!
    DFDS offers up to 30 crossings per day on its Dover to Calais service. Fares start from £78 each way for a car and four people. Browse a selection of fragrances, cosmetics and electronics in DFDS’ duty-free shops and save up to 50 per cent off UK high-street prices.
    Upgrade your ticket to include access to the exclusive Premium Lounge with complimentary hot and cold drinks and snacks from £12 per person. Add Priority Boarding to be one of the first to board and disembark the ferry from £10 per car each way.
    DFDS offers up to three sailings per day on its Newhaven to Dieppe route, with crossings taking four hours. Fares start from £80 each way for a car and two people. 
    Facilities onboard the ship include a bar, restaurant, and a duty-free shop with a range of perfumes, cosmetics and electronics at up to 50 per cent off UK high-street prices. A quiet lounge with reclining seats is available to book and for extra privacy customers can book a cabin from £24 each way.
    Book at

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    Saudi Arabia announces cruise line brand, AROYA Cruises

    Saudi Arabia has launched its own cruise line brand, AROYA Cruises, designed to appeal to both GCC travellers and the wider expat communityUnder the wider PIF-owned Cruise Saudi, AROYA Cruises will offer a modern interpretation of Arabian hospitality.
    While a part of Cruise Saudi, AROYA will operate independently, described as a “seperate business unit.” It will initally sail around parts of KSA and the wider GCC, with the potential to go further afield as the company progresses.
    AROYA Cruises itineraries and packages are currently under development and will be announced at its commercial launch to be held in the coming months.AROYA Cruises’ independent operational and management team will be led by Ghassan Khan. Khan will manage the brand as a separate business unit supporting the fulfilment of Cruise Saudi’s strategic goals of welcoming 1.3 million cruise visitors by 2035 and providing 50,000 direct and indirect jobs.
    Khan said: “This is an extremely exciting time. It is a privilege to bring this cruise line to launch as a core element of Saudi’s development as an international cruising destination.”
    “This momentous step marks a historical milestone in Cruise Saudi’s ambitious strategy to create a premium cruise ecosystem in Saudi, in line with Vision 2030.” added Lars Clasen, CEO of Cruise Saudi. “AROYA Cruises will be operating as an autonomous brand within the Cruise Saudi portfolio, aiming to provide experiences and services specifically designed to embrace Arabian preferences.”ADVERTISEMENTSource: Hotelier Middle East

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