Crystal's Edie Rodriguez On New Ships, World Cruises & Near-Term Opportunities, Plus More From Cruise Shipping Miami

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Our friends from France ... at Cruise Shipping Miami

A Fun First Day, From Miami Beach

It was a busy first day here at Cruise Shipping Miami, but I wanted to share a little of yesterday's fun with you. The day kicked off with a State of the Industry session. Basically, the message is the same every year from these publicly held companies whose execs sit on stage (and are quite entertaining) — cruising is the best-value vacation ever. Rather than me trying to recap the events, read about them in CSM Today. You can also find tweets at #CSM2015.

After the state of the industry session, the trade show floor opened, where countries from all over the world were represented as well as suppliers and organizations eager to gain the ear, and get into the wallets, of the cruise lines.  

I ended the night at Joe's Stone Crabs, where Carnival Corporation treated media to a wonderful dinner of stone crabs followed by that always-delicious key lime pie.

Before returning back to our hotels, about 1,000 of us delegates descended on Story, a South Beach nightclub where Porthole Cruise Magazine sponsored a party at a place that made me feel like I was at least 90 years old but where I danced the night away with friends nonetheless. And no, the young lady in the photo below was not one of those friends.

I did manage to get some work done. Below, you'll find an interview with Crystal Cruises' Edie Rodriguez and the godmother of Viking Star, debuting in May.  — Ralph Grizzle

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Six Tips To Extract More Joy From Your Cruise

In this free special report, I’ve put together a half dozen actionable items that can make the difference between cruise vacations that are memorable and others that fail to measure up to all you had hoped they would be. I’ve cruised on hundreds of ships, as a solo traveler and with family and friends.  — Ralph Grizzle, The Avid Cruiser

Click to download the report.

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Auberge de la Treille

Shore Excursions From Marseille: French Cuisine At Auberge de la Treille

You wouldn’t want to visit Provence without enjoying some of the best culinary experiences that the region has to offer. There are lots of places to do that in and around Avignon, but we found a special place not far from the Pope’s Palace and Avignon’s other attractions. The Auberge de la Treille was like an oasis with fine food …

Read more.

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Crystal's Edie Rodriguez Talks New Ships, World Cruises & Short-Term Cruise Opportunities

Crystal's Edie Rodriguez Talks New Ships, World Cruises & Near-Term Cruise Opportunities

I last interviewed Edie Rodriguez, president of Crystal Cruises, during my April 2014 voyage on Crystal Serenity. On that sailing, I discovered Crystal Serenity’s Modern Cuisine as well as Crystal Serenity’s Tastes, which Edie talks about in this podcast. A lot has changed since then. Crystal will soon have new owners, and a new ship (see Breaking News: Crystal Cruises To Get New Owners, New …

Read more.

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Avid Cruiser Podcast: An Interview With Viking Star's Godmother, Mayor of Bergen, Trude Drevland

Avid Cruiser Podcast: An Interview With Viking Star's Godmother, Mayor of Bergen, Trude Drevland

Today at Cruise Shipping Miami, I ran into Trude Drevland, the mayor of Bergen, Norway, and godmother of Viking's first ocean-going vessel, the Viking Star. I'll be on the new ship for a media preview from May 2 through May 8, sailing from Barcelona to Lisbon. If you're curious about this new ship, as we all are, be sure to keep …

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Pope's Palace Avignon

Shore Excursions From Marseille: Avignon, Once The Seat Of Catholicism, The Pope's Palace

At the beginning of the 12th century the seat of Catholicism was not in Rome but in Avignon. During the 14th century, Avignon's papal residence was home to a succession of nine popes. The Pope’s Palace is one of the largest and most important medieval Gothic buildings in all of Europe. It was once a fortress and a palace and …

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Arnold Donald

Live, From Miami Beach, The World's Largest Cruise Gathering

This week, I, and 10,000 others, are in Miami Beach attending Cruise Shipping Miami (there are also 100,000 or more spring breakers at Miami Beach's doorstep, but that's another story). We're all here to create better cruise experiences for cruise travelers. My plan is to seek out what's coming down the pike that can improve your cruise experience and relay …

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