Archive for the ‘Cruises’ Category

Crystal Symphony Debuts World’s First Living Wall at Sea

By Amanda Klimak CTIE   Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

LOS ANGELES, September 10, 2012 – In an industry first, ultra-luxury Crystal Cruises has unveiled the world’s first self-contained, free-standing living wall at sea, created and crafted by UK-based ANS Group Europe.  ANS Group Europe spent two days installing the living wall on the 922-guest Crystal Symphony as the ship sailed from Portland to Dover to complete its 11-night “British Isle Brilliance” voyage.

Crystal Symphony's Living Wall

Crystal Symphony's New Living Wall

Designed for an al fresco area in the ship’s Deck 11 Trident Grill, the unique living wall uses a varied and diverse selection of indoor plants to display a world map.  The living wall is 37.7 feet (11.5 meters) long and 7.9 feet (2.4 meters) high and will receive regular maintenance by Crystal Symphony’s onboard team of florists.

“In keeping with our ongoing focus on design, we wanted to create a focal point that was both highly contemporary and visually stunning,” says Alexandra Don, Crystal’s vice president, hotel design and services.  “The end result is a living wall that brings the Trident Grill to life and serves as an eye-catching backdrop to the incomparable service and choices that always characterize a Crystal holiday.”

Trident Grill Living Wall

The Living Wall at the Trident Grill on the Crystal Symphony

Joel Nash, marketing manager for ANS Group Europe added, “This bespoke project is an exciting and exhilarating scheme.  Installing living walls on a cruise ship is taking us to a completely new level and opens up all sorts of possibilities.  When you think this wall will be travelling as far north as Lapland and down to Cape Horn, it takes your breath away.”     

A living wall is a vertical garden that is pre-planted in panels and then attached to the wall or facade of a building.  Plants stay intact in their vertical positions because their root structures are anchored in two to four inches of soil kept within the panel.

 

The installation of the wall on Crystal Symphony is yet another example of Crystal’s “Crystal Clean” environmental and educational efforts both onboard and on shore.  A living wall acts as a bio filter, enhancing air quality by breaking down harmful airborne contaminants and transforming them into clean oxygen.  By absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen, it reduces greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

Crystal’s passion for taking care of guests in an inviting environment of extraordinary space, quality and choices has earned the company more “World’s Best” awards than any other cruise line, resort or hotel in history.  A keen focus on design has also earned the line numerous industry design honors, including first-ever awards from Hospitality Design magazine and the Association of Retail Environments (A.R.E.) in 2012.

For more information on Crystal Cruises and reservations, contact a Largay Travel Specialist at 1-800-322-9481, online at www.LargayTravel.com or email us at vacations@largaytravel.com




Disney on the ‘High Seas’

By vmastroianni   Thursday, March 29th, 2012

What cruise line could possibly think of having fireworks (yes, fireworks!) at sea, a pirate dance party on the pool deck, Captain Jack’s special appearance, a water slide flowing across both sides of the ship and even OVER the edge? Of course, it’s Disney, with the entrance of its new ship into the fleet, the ‘Disney Dream’.
The Dream welcomes guests onboard with all the latest in technology and design, but brings back the elegance and the ‘grandness’ of ships from the past with its sweeping staircases, nautical theme and colors, attention to every detail, and of course, everyone’s favorite Disney characters.
From the staff, to the food, to the amenities, Disney has gone all out in creating their beautiful new ship. The staff displays Disney’s commitment to excellent service with a friendly smile. The food is served to perfection, both in taste and in appearance, and the staterooms have all the features that one would expect when traveling at sea….and more! With the most comfortable bedding on the high seas, great bath products (H2O), iPod docks/alarm clocks, flat screen TV’s, excellent storage space, innovative WAVE phones for guest use onboard to keep in touch with the family, and the list goes on and on.
Entertainment onboard will amaze both adults and kids. With Disney characters participating in daily activities and leading the way in evening stage shows, the themes will delight adults and kids alike. Characters show up in all areas of the ship all day and night, whether you’re playing sports in the outdoor sports court, or walking to dinner through the main lobby area, they’re always entertaining and making guests smile. The stage shows are creative and colorful and will make cruisers of all ages smile: ‘The Golden Mickeys’, ‘Villians Tonight,’ and ‘Believe’ are each the beginning of a fun and festive night at sea.
A visit to the islands onboard The Dream would not be complete without a stop at Castaway Cay. The Disney-owned island offers everyone the opportunity to relax and unwind in a safe, extremely clean environment, and also explore and be active at the same time. With bike rentals and trails, a lookout tower with binoculars, watersports equipment rentals, excursions, beach bar service and food service, scavenger hunts and yoga, the choices are endless. The three beach areas (watersports, family beach, and “adults only”) everyone can find their own special place. And if you’re looking for some ‘special’ pampering, beach cabanas can be rented for the day ($499/family cabana, $399/adults only cabana). Renters are spoiled with beach butlers, food and beverage service, non-motorized watersports equipment, safe, refrigerators, towels, hammocks, and a comfortable seating area.
Disney’s Dining experience onboard is also a very unique experience. With three restaurants and ‘rotational dining’ each guest will be able to experience every dining venue onboard. The dining rooms hold surprises for all! And, of course, two specialty restaurants (Remy and Palo) serve the best French and Italian cuisine that you would expect from any 5-star restaurant.
Whether you’re a Disney-lover or not, the Disney cruise experience will not disappoint; the only thing missing is a casino, but with every other surprise that you find onboard, you may only realize this when you are returning home from the trip!




Silversea Expeditions

By Paul Largay   Monday, September 12th, 2011

Paul Largay sat down with Silversea Cruises VP of Sales, Steve Tucker, to talk about Silversea Expeditions voyages on the Silver Explorer.  This ship offers cruises to Antarctica and the Arctic Region, as well as many other wonderful destinations.  Cruises are exciting and adventurous, while maintaining the luxury and comfort that Silversea Cruises is known for.




Discovering the Secrets of Viking River Cruises

By Amanda Klimak CTIE   Thursday, June 23rd, 2011

The travel specialists of Largay Travel are always in search of the most unique and wonderful experiences and when it comes to river cruising, Viking River Cruises is the world leader.  So when an invitation came to enjoy a river cruise along the Connecticut River on the Lady Katherine while learning about Viking River Cruises, they just couldn’t say no. 

Largay Travel Specialists with Viking River Cruises

Largay Travel Specialists attend a Viking River Cruise Seminar

As we sailed along the lush green banks of the Connecticut River, we learned about the itineraries Viking offers from Europe to Russia and Ukraine and in Asia and Egypt.  With four new ships launching in 2012, offering spacious balconies and alfresco dining, it was a true privilege to get a behind the scenes glance of what the future holds with Viking River Cruises.  Pictured from left to right are Melissa Russo, Tina Posila, Amanda Klimak, Vivian Leonard, Annette Godin, Vira Mastroianni and Ken Sause.  Seated in front is Forrest Cramer, our trusted sales representative and friend from Viking River Cruises.

Forest took a moment to do a quick interview with Vivian Leonard, one of our Viking River Cruise specialists.




The Magnificent Crystal Symphony

By Vivian Mastropietro   Monday, February 22nd, 2010

As I arrived in Athens, the excitement was incredible.  We stayed in Athens for 1 night to view the Acropolis and the Parthenon.  It was as incredible as I thought it would be.   The following day we were picked up at our hotel and brought down to the pier.   Boarding was seamless and because of our great connection with Crystal I was able to board early.  I don’t know how they do it but from the minute we boarded, snapped our picture for our I.D. they knew us by name.  Amazing…  

The ship is simply beautiful and has just been refurbished.  Cabins are comfortable and sitting on the balcony in the morning for that cup of coffee was a special time. 

Mealtime was an extra treat.  Although the dining room served exquisite food, Nobu and Prego are the specialty restaurant and special is just what they are.    Reservations are needed but easy to obtain once you are on board.

I cannot say enough about the crew.  From the cabin steward to the Captain everyone was amazing.  A smile on the face and a pleasant greeting were always offered.  It is obvious that everyone working on board enjoys their job and they never give you the feeling that what you are asking is too much trouble.

Virtuoso Voyager Club could not have been better.  The cocktail reception was delightful and it was such a pleasure to have the opportunity to meet others who would join us on our private excursion to Ephesus, which turned out to be a highlight of the trip.

Yes from the time you step your foot on to the ship to the time you get off (with tears in your eyes), our experience with Crystal Cruises was amazing!