Here’s a quick look at what’s new this week in cruising, and how it could impact your next trip…
- The "Ship of Dreams" is sailing again -- sort of. Blue Star Line and Clive Palmer, an Australian businessman, are announcing that a full-size replica of the Titanic -- Titanic II -- will set sail in 2018. The new 2,400-passenger ship will be nearly identical to the original and will have a grand staircase, smoking room, Turkish bath, and first, second and third class cabins alongside modern technology. And yes, there will be enough lifeboats to go around.
- Calling all beer lovers: Portable, self-serve draft beer carts are coming to Carnival Cruise Line ships sailing out of Miami. The 20 carts will move around wherever crowds gather -- think: near the theater or on the sun deck -- and will serve Carnival's own ThirstyFrog Red, Bud Light, or Miller Lite. To use, just swipe your onboard spending card and you'll be able to pour yourself a cold one.
- Listen up, foodies: Ducasse Conseil, the consulting arm and training school of Michelin-starred Chef Alain Ducasse, and French luxury line Ponant are teaming up for a new project that will bring new menus of enriched culinary offerings to the line's five ships, starting this summer with the 244-passenger Le Lyrial. The rest of the rollout will go into effect by early 2017.
- Two incidents on Disney cruise ships made news this week: In one, a Disney ship sprang into action to help a couple who were having trouble with their sailboat. One of the people rescued, however, was Martin Gottesfeld, a suspected hacker from Massachusetts. Gottesfeld, according to NBC News, was then arrested for allegedly helping to launch a computer attack on Boston Children's Hospital. The man and his wife had been on the run for several weeks. In the second indecent, the Disney Wonder took on a lifesaving role, rescuing a dozen suspected Cuban migrants who were stranded in a dilapidated boat off the Cayman Islands.