December 5th, 2017 by Jordan Bailey
P&O Cruises’ Oceana and Arcadia are receiving a ship-wide refresh, bringing much welcomed enhancements to two of P&O’s popular mid-size cruise ships. Here’s everything you need to know about the work that is taking place.
The elegant, intimate, and adult-only Arcadia entered the Blohm+Voss shipyard in Hamburg in November 2017. Some of the areas that underwent notable refurbishment include:
- Aquarius Pool & Bar: This area benefited from a brighter colour scheme, and furnishings, including updated chairs, tables, and wall tiles.
- Atrium: Arcadia’s main three-deck-high atrium and reception area, saw changes to a number of items, including carpets, chairs, and cushions, giving the whole area much more of a ‘wow factor’ it deserves.
- The Belvedere Restaurant: New tiled flooring creates a sense of flow in the buffet area, while teak on the walls and a marine-toned colour palette provide a distinctive maritime feel.
- The Piano Bar: A fresh new colour palette of teals, soft greens and neutrals lifts the mood during the day, and a new lighting scheme strikes a nostalgic note when the sun goes down.
- Suites: Arcadia’s range of suites have a new warm and inviting feel. New furniture – including sofa beds, armchairs, and coffee tables – creates a comfortable ambience to relax in.
Arcadia will sail around Europe and the Caribbean before heading off on her World Cruise in January 2018.
The spacious and family-friendly Oceana will emerge from a refurbishment in mid-December 2017. Some of the areas that will undergo notable refurbishment include:
Terrace Bar: A new colour scheme, lounge furniture and feature tiling will create a retreat-style space. Hot tubs will be refurbished and a new canopy offering shade over the pool and bar area will be added.
The Plaza: The main social space on the ship will see new carpets, tiling, furniture and a fresh colour scheme, which will help create a distinct identity between the dining spaces and lounges.
Magnums: The Champagne bar will glow with a new luxurious colour scheme. New bar stools, lounge chairs, and sofas will enhance this elegant venue.
Yacht & Compass: In addition to a new dance floor, the bar will benefit from a strong new identity inspired by the nautical decor.
Youth spaces: The children’s clubs will receive updated entertainment equipment, soft-play features for younger cruisers, and redecorated walls.
When she returns from her refurbishment, Oceana will offer cruises to Europe and the Caribbean, before kicking off brand new Dubai & Arabian Gulf fly-cruises in early 2019.
To see the new enhancements for yourself, speak to one of our friendly sales team today on 0800 368 9059 who will be happy to help you book your next P&O Cruises holiday.
November 30th, 2017 by Jordan Bailey
A cruise is the perfect type of holiday to choose for all the family to enjoy. On cruise there is something for everyone, from children clubs and play parks for the little ones, to rock climbing walls and unlimited ice cream for the teens, to adult-only retreats, spas, and fantastic entertainment. Choosing not just the right cruise line for your family needs, but also the right ships is important. Here are 5 top cruise ships we recommend for that dream family holiday…
Symphony of the Seas
The largest cruise ship in the world launches in 2018. Symphony of the Seas is filled with fun activities and amazing experiences. Sailing in the Mediterranean from Barcelona during summer 2018, the ship will then reposition to Miami for the winter months. There’s everything you could ever think of on this behemoth. From ice skating and rock climbing, to a zip line, traditional wooden carousel, Hairspray The Musical, and a robotic bartender. This truly is the ultimate cruise ship for families.
Top things for Children: Adventure Ocean youth club, Splashaway Bay water park, traditional carousel, mini golf, AquaTheatre
Top things for Teens: Starbucks,The Living Room teen lounge, basketball, Ultimate Abyss slide, Flowrider surf simulator
Top things for Adults: Solarium, Central Park, Rising Tide Bar, Bionic Bar, Vitality at Sea Spa
Also why not try: Allure of the Seas, Harmony of the Seas, Oasis of the Seas
Norwegian Escape is one of Norwegian Cruise Line’s largest ships. There are plenty of things to do onboard.
Top things for Children: Splash Academy youth club, video arcade, family slide, mini golf, aqua park
Top things for Teens: Aqua Racer, ropes course, Entourage teen lounge, Dolce Gelato, hot tub
Top things for Adults: Headliners Comedy Club, Spice H20, 5 O’Clock Somewhere Bar, Food Republic, The Supper Club
Also why not try: Norwegian Bliss, Norwegian Breakaway, Norwegian Getaway
Independence of the Seas
Independence of the Seas is one of the most popular cruise ships sailing from the UK. Set sail for fun from Southampton and enjoy all the wonderful activities onboard. In early 2018, Independence of the Seas will receive an extensive makeover, which will add many new features, such as waterslides, laser tag, and a trampoline park.
Top things for Children: Trampoline park, Splashaway Bay, Adventure Ocean youth club, Sugar Beach Candy & Ice Cream Store, waterslides
Top things for Teens: Laser tag, Studio B ice rink, Fish & Ships, Escape Room, rock climbing wall
Top things for Adults: Solarium, Vitality at Sea Spa, Chops Grille, Casino Royale, cantilevered whirlpool
Also why not try: Freedom of the Seas, Liberty of the Seas
P&O Cruises flagship Britannia is a family friendly ship based out of Southampton. P&O is the most popular cruise line in the UK, and Britannia – the largest cruise ship built specifically for the UK – caters to all ages.
Top things for Children: The Reef youth club, children’s play area, deck games
Top things for Teens: Pizzeria, The Studio cinema, Lido Pool, Arena sports court, ice cream parlour
Top things for Adults: The Retreat, The Cookery Club, Oasis Spa, The Glass House, Limelight Club
Also why not try: Azura, Ventura
The newest ship in the MSC Cruises fleet has just launched. MSC Seaside is a revolutionary new cruise ship which will offer Caribbean cruises from Miami. The ship has been designed to maximise deck space, and with a wide promenade deck, plenty of sun lounging space, and a Miami beach condo inspired aft pool area, this is the perfect ship for relaxing in the sunny climates of the Caribbean.
Top things for Children: Arcade games, bowling, Doremiland, Forest Aquaventure Park, Club Logo
Top things for Teens: F1 simulator, zip line, poolside movie screen, XD cinema, Infinity Bridge
Top things for Adults: MSC Aurea Spa, South Beach Pool, Champagne Bar, Sports Bar, Waterfront Boardwalk
Also why not try: MSC Seaview
As you can see, there’s something for everyone to enjoy on a cruise. These are just five family cruise ships to enjoy, but there are plenty more ships and amazing activities we haven’t mentioned. Speak to one of our friendly sales team today on 0800 368 9059 to book your next family cruise!
November 21st, 2017 by Jordan Bailey
Christmas is all about spending time with the family, and creating magical, lasting memories. Imagine no slaving over the stove, no washing up, and instead more time spending time with those that matter most. Setting sail on a festive cruise with P&O Cruises is the perfect way to enjoy a stress-free and an unforgettable Christmas. Unwrap your Christmas presents on Christmas Day from somewhere in the middle of the sea, surround yourself in decadent decorations and enjoy a traditional British Christmas Dinner.
October 9th, 2017 by Jordan Bailey
P&O Cruises offers some of the best curries at sea, and to celebrate National Curry Week, P&O's Food Hero Atul Kocchar shares his top ten tips to cooking the perfect curry at home.
1: What essential spices should a curry enthusiast keep in their spice box?
For the basics, you'll need good garam masala, black peppercorns, chilli powder, tumeric, ground coriander, and coriander seeds. I also recommend to keep some onion paste and giner-garlic paste in the freezer to save time.
2: What's the best way to store spices?
Keep spices in an airtight container (preferably stainless steel), away from direct sunlight. If stored properly, whole spices can last nine to 12 months, while powdered spices can last up to six months. Buy spices in small quantities and use them as often as you can. That way you don't end up with a cupboard full of stale spices that won't deliver on flavour.
3: Is it best to use freshly ground spice or pre-ground varieties?
If possible, grind them freshly for the best results. Pound whole spices in a pestle and mortar and you’ll release their fragrant oils and flavour.
4: Any top tips on heating up oil and spices to release the best flavour?
Frying spices in hot oil means you get as much flavour out of them as possible. Check the oil is hot enough by dropping a little spice in. If it sizzles, you can add the rest of the spices. You only need to cook spices for about a minute - be careful not to burn them, as they’ll turn bitter. Slow down the cooking process by adding onions, or whatever the next stage in your recipe is.
5: How do you chop onions and keep your eyes from stinging?
The sharpness of the knife matters. As soon as you bruise the onion it releases a series of chemical reactions. A sharp knife will cause less damage to cell walls and fewer irritants will be released - so you won’t cry so much.
6: What one gadget do you recommend investing in and why?
For the best results with spices and flavour, I recommend an electric spice grinder or a trusty pestle and mortar.
7: How hot is too hot? What’s your take on the use of chilli?
Too hot is when you can’t taste any of the ingredients in the dish. My rule of thumb is to cut a chilli in half and use a teaspoon rather than a knife to scrape out the seeds (the hottest part of the chilli). And remember, never touch your eyes afterwards.
8: What simple and effective ‘finishing touches’ do you suggest to make a plate of curry sing?
I like to garnish a curry with chopped coriander and green chillies and a pinch of fresh powdered garam masala – delicious! Always taste before serving and adjust accordingly.
9: What’s the best bit of advice your mother gave you in the kitchen?
"Success without struggle is absolutely useless; failure is a very important feeling to be able to enjoy success".
10: What one piece of advice would you pass on to budding curry chefs?
Always know your onions! Cooking onions to use in Indian food is a technical skill that takes years to perfect.
Spain, France & Italy
13 April 2018 | 14 nights | Azura
Southampton - Alicante - Barcelona - Toulon - La Spezia - Civitavecchia - Cartagena - Gibraltar - Southampton
Prices from £1049pp
Portugal & Canary Islands
21 April 2018 | 13 nights | Ventura
Southampton - Madeira - La Palma - Gran Canaria - Tenerife - Lanzarote - La Coruna - Southampton
Prices from £899pp
Spain & Portugal
4 May 2018 | 7 nights | Ventura
Southampton - Vigo - Lisbon - Oporto - St Peter Port - Southampton
Prices from £549pp
Portugal & Spain
20 July 2018 | 7 nights | Ventura
Southampton - St Peter Port - Oporto - Lisbon - Vigo - Southampton
Prices from £659pp
September 26th, 2017 by Jordan Bailey
Azamara Club Cruises has announced it is purchasing a sister ship to Azamara Journey and Azamara Quest.
Currently sailing as Adonia for P&O Cruises, the sister ship, which will be named Azamara Pursuit, will join the Azamara Club Cruises fleet from March 2018.
“We are pleased to expand our portfolio by 50%, allowing us to visit even more regions of the world through the acquisition of this sister ship,” said Larry Pimentel, President and CEO of Azamara Club Cruises. “Our loyal guests and travel partners have asked for this expansion for a long time; we are very pleased to deliver this to them.”
The ship’s décor will be updated to match the brand’s upmarket position. These updates will be similar to the renovations recently introduced on the Azamara Journey and Azamara Quest, bringing guests the experience of a boutique hotel at sea.
In a statement, Paul Ludlow, Senior Vice President of P&O Cruises, said: “yesterday we signed a contract for the same of Adonia. The sale will be completed in March 2018 and Adonia’s last cruise as a P&O Cruises ship will be D804 leaving Barbados on February 23 and ending in Barbados on March 9, 2018.”
Cruises aboard Adonia that depart after March 9 have been cancelled. Information about deployment and itineraries for Azamara Pursuit will be available in October.
August 21st, 2017 by Jordan Bailey
2019 itineraries for P&O Cruises and Cunard will soon be docking! Pre-register your interest today to be one of the first to have access to itineraries and secure your perfect cabin at excellent prices!
New collection released - pre-registration opens
On sale to Peninsular Club members
11 September (Caribbean, Baltic, and Ligurian Tier)
General sale opens
12 September (Cruises departing March - May 2019)
13 September (Cruises departing June - October 2019)
Past P&O passengers, and Cunard World Club members save 5% on all 2019 itineraries when booked by 30 November 2017. Remember, you also get extra discount when you book with Ocean World Travel!
When cruise lines release a new season of itineraries, the best fares and best cabins get snapped up quickly. By pre-registering, you'll be among the first to receive details on itineraries, dates, and prices, so that as soon as sailings go on sale, you can book early, securing your perfect cruise holiday at an amazing price. Once you have filled out the form on our website, pre-registering your interest with us, we will make sure that you are contacted by one of our cruise specialists as soon as booking opens, so that you can get the best price and perfect cabin!
To pre-register, click on the button above, fill out the form with your contact details and state which cruise line you're interested in pre-registering for. Alternatively you can call us on 0800 368 9059. A member of our sales team will be in touch with more information as soon as it is released by the cruise line. If you have any other questions in the meantime, feel free to get in touch.
February 1st, 2017 by Matthew Bayford
Fabulous savings with P&O Cruises
We have some great deals from P&O Cruises, who have announced a price drop on lots of their cruises! See the table below for the itineraries that are included.
See something you like? Give our sales team a call – 0800 368 9050.
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Contact us for more information.
January 11th, 2017 by Matthew Bayford
We recently went aboard P&O's Aurora with Hampshire Wedding Group to stage a wedding ceremony, with the idea of showing people how easy and glamorous weddings on ships can be.
The group was divided to showcase different wedding themes, weddings for different ages and different sexualities. "I don't think people appreciate how affordable it actually is versus the normal wedding. On here you get the combined honeymoon with the wedding at the same time. You also get the ease of not having to move around... There's no worry of your make up getting ruined or your hair getting ruined and you can bring your whole family, it's wonderful!" explained Michele, the director of Ocean World Travel.
P&O Cruises 'Weddings at Sea' experience starts with champagne and flowers in your cabin and includes a personal wedding coordinator, the ceremony at sea conducted by the Captain, wedding ceremony venue with floral arrangements, wedding music, a professional photographer and of course an official copy of your Marriage Certificate.
The wedding group were amazed when showed around the different parts of the ship. With such a stunning array of areas, there were lots of places to photograph the 'big day' and as you can see the results were beautiful!
Marriages on cruise ships are not a new idea, it's perhaps that they are becoming more and more popular. Being able to combine both the wedding and honeymoon, whilst being able to bring your family on holiday is very appealing. And with most of the P&O fleet now registered to carry out weddings they are becoming a strong choice for loved up couples across the country.
Here at Ocean World Travel we can provide a number of services to make your dream wedding on board come true. If you have any ideas, give us a call and lets make them a reality.
Here's what happened on the day -
December 16th, 2016 by Francesca Bandini
We all know that P&O Cruises is building the biggest ship for the UK market ever conceived, meanwhile the Brits favourite cruise line is still investing in renewing life on board to make it exciting for past guests too.
Are you aware of the new shows onboard? Or the gastronomic experiences available on the Gala Dinner menu? Not yet? Read our article to find out more of the exclusive previews announced during a function in London last month. Discover what’s new on board P&O Cruises.
Exciting news on board P&O Cruises…
- New exciting show on board Arcadia: “Money Makes The World Go Round” the show will hit the stage at the end of November and will be mainly based on a cabaret scene. The plot is all about Lily, a young country girl who moved into town and get involved in the cabaret scene, where she met her love Harry, but their love story is signed by adversity. Who knows if love will win? Ruthie Henshall, one of the Britain’s most acclaimed West End show performers put the show in place in record time. Ruthie is working as producer and commented: “To now be wearing a different hat and overseeing the production from conception to launch is a dream come true. We have a superb team of award-winning professionals who are currently working on many of London’s biggest shows and I hope that by creating this show onboard Arcadia we are helping to shape the direction of new productions and bring a slice of the West End to the sea.”
— P&O Cruises – Agents (@POC_AgencySales) October 26, 2016
- New Gala Dinner Menu – destination led: Mytilene star rated, and much loved chef Marco Pierre White has been working on a new menu to bring on board. Local and specially selected ingredients are used to integrate these classic British dishes. The brand new menus will be available on all the ships during Gala dinner and include:
-Marco’s classic beef wellington with a wild mushroom and Medeira duxelles server with dauphinoise potatoes
-Salt Marsh lamp loin with mint, garlic and chicken mousseline
-Crispy pork cheek with chorizo patatas bravas
-Biscuite glacé- hazelnut parfait with raspberry coulis and almond tuile
Marco Pierre White stressed that the Gala night dinners have always been exceptional and they will always be now even more special thanks to the ports of call local products. In occasion of the presentation of the new menu during an event in London, we had the chance to try classic British pub food: sausage rolls and scotch eggs – nothing like the ones you have tasted before!
- Decadent chocolate Pavé Royal: Award-winning French pâtissier Eric Lanlard, has created a special indulgent chocolate cake to be featured on the special Chef’s dinner menu at the main restaurant. Eric Lanlard is already part of the P&O fleet as one of the Food Heros and commented: “I am so excited to be introducing P&O Cruises guests to my Pavé Royal, which combines my two passions chocolate and pastry…I hope guests love this dessert as much as I do”.
This mouthwatering cake is made with high quality ingredients only and contains: dark chocolate mousse, soft hazelnut meringue, crunchy praline wafer. The chocolate called Valrhona is very special as it is the favourite of the best pastry chef in the world.
- New production on board Azura: “Evolution” is a brand new show that has just started on board launched by star Jonathan Wilkes. The show combines dancers, singers and also techno- visual effects. This futuristic show is telling the story of the fight between the Fabricators and the Humanoids, the eternal quarrel will eventually be interrupted by the love explosion between the leader of Fabricators and a female humanoid. What will be the destiny of the world?
P&O Cruises senior vice president Paul Ludlow commented: “Evolution is unlike any other show we have shown on board. It is visually stunning, with mesmerizing dancing and will be a wholly immersive experience for our guests”
— P&O Cruises (@pandocruises) October 26, 2016
- New SWIMMING LESSONS: in partnership with Mark Foster P&O Cruises will provide swimming lessons and more on larger ships.
Have you been on board yet? If you have tried any of the new experiences, please leave a comment. We would love to know your thoughts….
Photo credit: © Steve Dunlop Photography
November 23rd, 2016 by Francesca Bandini
Oriana, the most loved adult only P&O ship, will be refurbished in Hamburg at the end of this month. The refit will not erase Oriana’s heritage, in fact, everything will be done to preserve her magnificent Art Deco features. However, the other areas will be having fabulous makeovers by Richmond International, a very well-known firm who have designed some of the most prestigious hotels across the world. In fact, this upcoming refurbishment has been designed to enhance the luxuriousness of the ship, which was once the biggest in the world (how times have changed!).
Looking forward to seeing her sumptuous new fabrics, soft furnishings, carpets, furniture, lighting, and colour schemes? Take a sneak peek…
How Oriana will look like after the refit?
Cabins & Suites
At P&O they know how important it is to come back to a nice cabin after a long day ashore, for this reason they will be working towards a general upgrading of the cabins with a more elegant design and furniture or restoration of the furniture. There will also be general maintenance work on the balconies. Bathrooms will be refurbished as well to keep them up to standard.
The Peninsular & Oriental Restaurants
The restaurants are certainly the most frequented areas and a good refit is certainly needed. The main restaurants will be refreshed with a new colour palette, new carpets and curtains and an improved lighting scheme. P&O is making sure that these great social spaces continue to be every diner’s dream.
Salon, Spa & Gym
Cruising is all about getting pampered so the SPA area couldn’t escape the Oriana refit! The plan is to add new equipment and enrich the treatment offers, such as a pedicure station. All the existing areas, such as sauna, steam-room, whirlpool and changing room, will be modernised and given a fresher look. The gym area will also be improved with a new layout; and don’t forget the relaxation areas which will have new features in line with the theme such as flowers, plants and natural wood.
The Conservatory and The Beach House
Central areas of the ship including the Conservatory and The Beach House will be refreshed. They are perfect for a relaxed meal/snack or intimate dinner. In fact, P&O are planning to put in more tables for two. The new décor and lighting will certainly enhance these much-loved places.
Anderson’s and Lord’s Tavern
This will be one of the most luxurious parts of the ship. The Anderson’s bar named after P&O founder Arthur Anderson will feature new stools, tables, rugs and lamps, and will be the ideal place for a pre-dinner aperitif or late night drink. Another favourite, the Lord’s Tavern, will go through an extensive refit. It will continue to feature the ever popular pub quiz and sport!
The theatre is one of the most magic and important spaces of a cruise ship, therefore the Theatre Royal will also get a new look with re-upholstered chairs and new lighting and equipment during the Oriana refit.
We are really curious to see what the Oriana refit will look like. Despite the age, (22 years in service next year!), this is still one of the most enchanting ships of the P&O fleet. The best way for you to see this new elegant decor is by booking one of the cruises sailing in 2017. Why at take a look at the adventurous sailing to the Caribbean in January from Southampton?